The Long Mars **Spoilers**

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The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Mon Jun 23, 2014 1:51 pm

Thanks to my nearly posting spoilers in my own "No Spoilers" thread, I thought I'd better start one where spoilers are allowed.



If you have not yet read The Long Mars - go no further as this thread contains spoilers. :naughty:
"Goodness is about what you do. Not what you pray to."
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Tue Jun 24, 2014 3:16 pm

Was reading the Inspector Clouseau parody this morning. Very Pratchettesque. :)

Did anyone else look up who Eugene Cernan was? I'm ashamed to say that, although the name sounded familiar, I couldn't place him. :oops:
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby bojje87 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 3:19 pm

I´m halfway through the book, and I absolutely love it, like the previous two books in The Long Earth series.

There is one thing that bothers me though, and that is the fact of the attitude of "grown-up" Paul.
Supposing that the Next are a much more intelligent species than us "normal" Homo Sapiens, why is then Paul being so condescending towards people who are not the Next?
For me, with intelligence, there also comes an understanding of each species equal worth, no matter of their intelligence. Some of the smartest people I know have a great understanding for different kinds of intelligence in different people?
Paul, in the book, is comparing humans with "dumb apes", and then again he is pointing out the worth of the ape-like trolls. These double standards don´t make sense to me from the authors point of view. Why do you think they chose to portrait Paul (and perhaps others from the Next) in this way? I would love to hear other peoples thoughts. Do you really think that Paul thinks humans are all dumb, or is he just upset with the way the Long Earth is developing? Do you think the Next would like to extinct the Homo Sapiens? And what would then be the take home message from the book, the more intelligent species, the more death and war?

I appreciate any feedback and further discussion!

Cheers!
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Tue Jun 24, 2014 3:26 pm

I haven't gotten quite that far yet. So I won't read what you have written too closely. Just to say Welcome to the site. :)
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tiffany » Tue Jun 24, 2014 4:11 pm

bojje87 wrote:I´m halfway through the book, and I absolutely love it, like the previous two books in The Long Earth series.

There is one thing that bothers me though, and that is the fact of the attitude of "grown-up" Paul.
Supposing that the Next are a much more intelligent species than us "normal" Homo Sapiens, why is then Paul being so condescending towards people who are not the Next?
For me, with intelligence, there also comes an understanding of each species equal worth, no matter of their intelligence. Some of the smartest people I know have a great understanding for different kinds of intelligence in different people?
Paul, in the book, is comparing humans with "dumb apes", and then again he is pointing out the worth of the ape-like trolls. These double standards don´t make sense to me from the authors point of view. Why do you think they chose to portrait Paul (and perhaps others from the Next) in this way? I would love to hear other peoples thoughts. Do you really think that Paul thinks humans are all dumb, or is he just upset with the way the Long Earth is developing? Do you think the Next would like to extinct the Homo Sapiens? And what would then be the take home message from the book, the more intelligent species, the more death and war?


I appreciate any feedback and further discussion!

Cheers!


I don't like analyzing books, as to why this & why that, it is Sci-Fi after all, but the way Paul & David & the other Next think is explained near the end of the book, keep reading. :D
Welcome to the forum.
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Who's Wee Dug » Tue Jun 24, 2014 9:24 pm

I'm the same Tiff, I just read and enjoy and sometimes I will give something a bit more thought but just for my own satisfaction. :mrgreen:
He willnae tak' a drink! I think he's deid! , on the other hand though A Midgie in yir hand is worth twa up yir kilt.
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby bojje87 » Wed Jun 25, 2014 9:11 am

Normally I also don´t analyze too much, it was just something that I could not get out of my mind!
I have finished the book now, and I have to say I do have another perspective now. Do you know if they will continue writing the Long Earth series?

And thanks guys for the welcoming =) Glad to be here!
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tiffany » Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:13 am

They did seem to leave the book open for another. Nothing resolved in the 'ladder' into space on that Mars & then there are the Next. I think we need to find out what happens to those very superior beings.
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Who's Wee Dug » Wed Jun 25, 2014 11:16 am

bojje87! there were five projected, don't know when though as things change in publishing schedules.
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby bojje87 » Thu Jun 26, 2014 1:32 pm

Yay =) I want to keep reading! I imagine the Next going to the Earths which are unpopulated in the Long Mars...
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Thu Jul 10, 2014 12:25 pm

Well I finished and, as I expected, the book was very much left open for the next one. There is a lot of stuff not explained, but that's ok with me as this and the other books are very much about provoking thought.

I am reminded of classic Sci-Fi with this series. It's a sort of "what-if" series. They have introduced a premise - what if you could step sideways into infinite versions of Earth? From that idea they have then, I think, expanded on that idea to pose such questions as: What would this ability mean for Humanity and for the Datum Earth?

In the last book we were introduced to a terrorist attack on a US city, where people were able to step away to relative safety. In The Long Mars we have an enormous natural disaster that has rendered the Datum Earth pretty much uninhabitable in vast areas. The idea of the Yellowstone super-volcano causing such damage, we are told, is quite possible and maybe even likely. So the exploration of the effect this has is really quite well investigated. Of course those people in the book were able to step away from the disaster - we wouldn't be able to. In many ways it's the sort of reverse to what we get in a lot of post-disaster fiction. In this case one realises that as we don't have that ability to step away, the outcome for us could be pretty terrible. Normal dystopian fiction says: this is what things might be like if something dreadful happened. This book is, in many ways, more frightening because the threat is real and there is no escape.

Clearly we have not seen the last of the Next. I was sort of reminded of Arthur C Clarke's "Childhood's End" and John Wyndham's "The Midwich Cuckoos" with this story arc. It's not a new idea for a story, but I do like the way that this has been handled in this book. Of course the Next would see humans as apes. As single kids they are disturbed and frustrated. Picked on in school and bored at how simple things are to them. Once they get together as a group, and are able to communicate and swap ideas, they move even further away from homo sapiens. That increased strength would make trying to converse with ordinary people, incredibly slow and frustrating. Add to that the fact that those ordinary humans were prepared to wipe them out, must surely mean that we haven't seen the last of them. I suspect even Lobsang will have problems with them.

I'm still thinking about the Mars story. I found it interesting that Long Mars and Long Earth are not synchronized. The Mars in the sky of West 1 is not the same Mars as Mars West 1. This may make the idea of cheap easy space-flight using the Gap Earth, practically useless.

And then we have the Space Elevator technology. This again is an Arthur C Clarke idea. At least he has created it in his books - I don't know if it was his idea in the first place. What I want to know is how Sally's father managed to get a small strand of the cable. Was it just lying there waiting to be picked up? He obviously didn't cut it from the main cable. Not only would that be near impossible with any tools he might have, but it also be incredibly dangerous for a cable under that much tension to be cut.

So if space travel via the Gap Earth isn't going to be useful, maybe space elevators on the various Step Earths will.

I will look forward to the next book. :)
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Who's Wee Dug » Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:29 pm

Feegled a quote from the CA's forum.
However, it must have been Terry to bring in The Pink Panther into the story, can you relate to that Tony. :mrgreen:
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Tonyblack » Thu Jul 10, 2014 4:15 pm

I certainly spotted that reference. :) I didn't like the comedy bits in this book. They felt out of place and awkward. It almost feels like they remembered this was partly a Pratchett book and therefore had to nail on some comedy bits. It's not necessary and felt intrusive. I did enjoy this book a lot, as well as the previous ones. But comedy generally doesn't work well in this series. :)
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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby The Mad Collector » Thu Jul 10, 2014 7:52 pm

OK against my better judgement I downloaded the audible version as I had a spare credit. The Long War was such an awful book and a serious low point in the writing of both Terry and Stephen with it's stock situations and 'as if by magic the heroes escape' sections, especially at the end, I came to The Long Mars with a highly negative view of the series.

However, and there has to be a however with that start, this book was much much better. The narrative flowed a lot better, the Beagles became more than just a badly written shock tactic and the concept of exploration was developed rather than just boringly listed in the previous book. Characters have been rounded out not just vague stereotypes and I actually was engrossed in the story for the first time in the three volumes.

I have to say the book read as very much a Stephen Baxter novel and I agree with Tony

Tonyblack wrote:It almost feels like they remembered this was partly a Pratchett book and therefore had to nail on some comedy bits. It's not necessary and felt intrusive.


that it really didn't work when it tried to be funny, this was proper SF and didn't need messing with as it just broke up the storyline.

All in all a vast improvement on The Long War, I may even go mad and buy a print copy ;)
One of those? Oh I'm sure I have one somewhere..

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Re: The Long Mars **Spoilers**

Postby Who's Wee Dug » Fri Jul 11, 2014 10:45 am

@Mad,All in all a vast improvement on The Long War, I may even go mad and buy a print copy)

Careful Mad no need to be rash and and rush in headlong. :lol:
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