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30 Jul, 2015

Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor

/ posted in: Reading Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor Lagoon by Nnedi Okorafor
on 2014
Pages: 320
Genres: Science Fiction
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

Three strangers, each isolated by his or her own problems: Adaora, the marine biologist. Anthony, the rapper famous throughout Africa. Agu, the troubled soldier. Wandering Bar Beach in Lagos, Nigeria's legendary mega-city, they're more alone than they've ever been before.But when something like a meteorite plunges into the ocean and a tidal wave overcomes them, these three people will find themselves bound together in ways they could never imagine. Together with Ayodele, a visitor from beyond the stars, they must race through Lagos and against time itself in order to save the city, the world... and themselves.

Goodreads

Something strange is happening off the coast of Lagos.  The fish are changing.  The water is changing.  The oil isn’t flowing.

They’ve been having a bad night.  Adaora’s increasingly irrationally jealous husband hit her.  She fought back and was able to easily pin him to the ground.  She fled to the beach.  Anthony was doing a show but needed to clear his head so he went for a walk.  Agu almost killed his fellow soldiers when they decided to rape a woman.  He is running from retribution.

The three humans are brought together and then taken offshore.  They return different and with a visitor.

First contact with an alien species doesn’t go well.  Everyone has an angle.  Adaora’s husband’s pastor wants to convert the aliens to his form of Christianity.  Some people want to kidnap it for a huge ransom.  The army wants to capture the aliens.

The aliens decide that they really don’t like humans.


I like the fact that the aliens don’t contact humans until after they’ve been in discussion with the animals in the ocean to see what would make them happy.  Bats and spiders get enlightenment too but humans are a problem for them.

The humans are a problem for everyone.  There is rioting after the aliens take over all communication to announce that they are here.  With the city in chaos it is up to the humans who the aliens first contacted to show what humanity can be and it act as witnesses to what it will become.

The story is told from multiple points of view including people from all levels of society.  There are wealthy people and prostitutes and pick pockets and church people.  The city of Lagos comes across as an important character.  The mythology of the area also plays a role and gives the story a bit of a folktale feel in addition to sci-fi.

Okorafor’s books aren’t hopeful about the future of humanity.  Her characters are always surrounded by greed and evil and stupidity.  The hope in her books comes from outside forces changing people to be better.  The writing draws you into the story and keeps you engaged until the end.

There is also a quick The Gods Must Be Crazy reference that made me laugh out loud.

 

Public domain from NOAA

Imagine what the fish would become if they had their wildest desires granted!

19 Feb, 2015

The Waters Rising by Sherri S. Tepper

/ posted in: Reading The Waters Rising by Sherri S. Tepper The Waters Rising by Sheri S. Tepper
on August 31st 2010
Pages: 512
Genres: Fiction, Science Fiction
Format: Hardcover
Source: Library
Buy on Amazon (affiliate link)

Goodreads

 

A princess is dying from a mysterious illness.  A young soul carrier has been found to take her soul from Norland to her homeland across the sea.  But first the child must do a favor for the princess and retrieve a package that she has hidden.  She is told that her highest priority is to get herself and the contents of the package back across the sea to the land of Tingawa that the princess came from.

Neighboring kingdoms are controlled by an evil family who have been trained as killers by a mysterious Old Dark Man.  They have an absolute hatred of Tingawans.  They will stop at nothing to make sure the soul carrier doesn’t make it to her ship alive.

Meanwhile the waters are rising.  Eventually they will swamp all the land on Earth.  Already villages have had to move to higher ground.  While the people of Norland try to adapt to the changing landscape, the leaders of Tingawa and the Sea King have decided to plan for the eventual demise of the Earth.


This book is actually telling two different stories.  The first is the story of the evil family and why they are trying to kill the Tingawans.  That wasn’t that interesting to me.  It covered the first part of the book and did drag.  If it wasn’t for the fact that I love this author and that there is a sequel to this book now that I want to read I’d have stopped.

The second story is the plan for survival when there is no more land.  This story I was interested in.  I think this is the story that continues into the sequel.  When the book got to this part it started to really move quickly for me.

I’m looking forward to reading Fish Tails to see what happens.

**I just looked it up on Goodreads to get that link and there are characters in there from a series that I have but that I haven’t read yet.  Crap.  It looks like she is tying together her entire lifetime of books into one big finale.  Now I have read the others to properly appreciate it! **

 

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