It is a welcome answer to Lord of the Flies, that is for sure.
I think several of the books that are relatively unpopular here (Mostly because of the subject matter) are right up my alley because of what they cover. Also because it is obvious that Terry did the research.
Anyway, I like the level of understanding of people's needs and fears that Terry shows, even when they are being no where near as good as they should be.
I was very bummed about the ending, as I thought the ship should have sailed, and it would have created a huge leap in human progress if it had. From a Darwinian perspective, a huge purge of gene pool, and combining the best possible features of what remained was so obviously a positive, that I kind of worry that Terry chickened out because of the implications.
Anyway, the meat of the book up until Daphne (to me anyway, YMMV) made the really stupid decision at the end, was interesting and intelligent and compassionate.
It would be a mistake to think that they weren't also dangerous, just because reading them didn't make fireworks go off in the sky. Reading them sometimes did the more dangerous trick of making fireworks go off in the privacy of the reader's brain.