Oscar Wilde said of reading,
“If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again,
there is no use in reading it at all.”
I so agree!
And I'm roaming our galaxy again
centuries into the future
through the words of
my favorite science fiction writer,
The Sun's Location in the Orion Arm
of the Milky Way Galaxy
Source: Google ~ Richard Powell
Some years ago,
Terry surprised me
on Christmas morning
with Dan Simmons'
a book I had never heard of.
Little did I know
I was embarking on
the science fiction adventure
of my lifetime,
as I began to read
of what is now known as
The Hyperion Cantos.
the four volumes of
The Hyperion Cantos
I have ever read.
Now, some readers I have run into
look down on science fiction.
They think that because science fiction
deals with an imaginary future,
futuristic science and technology,
and such topics as space travel, aliens,
and parallel universes
it is somehow not literature,
not worthy of being taken seriously.
How mistaken they are!
Excellent science fiction
is much more than shoot 'em up space cowboys
and little green men.
Science fiction at its best
plumbs the big ideas,
like the consequences of scientific and technological progress,
and it explores philosophy and psychology
to better illuminate humans, their societies, and their ethics.
another sometimes disparaged genre,
does this also.
The difference between the two
is that fantasy uses magic
and other supernatural phenomena
while science fiction works largely
within the constraints
of known physical laws.
But there is always room to speculate
and to push the boundaries beyond the known and proven.
(To read more about science fiction as a genre, visit Wikipedia.)
The very best science fiction asks the BIG questions.
It challenges our thinking,
and forces us to confront the metaphysical.
Dan Simmons tackles the BIG questions
in The Hyperion Cantos
with an audacious creativity
and a depth and range of imagination
that amazes and delights me.
The four Hyperion novels grapple with such questions as:
Who or what is God?
What is the relationship between Creator and Created?
Hands of God and Adam
Source: Wikimedia ~ Michelangelo
What is the fundamental nature of the universe
and in what direction is it evolving?
Cyclic Progressions of the Universe
What is humanity's role in the universe?
What does it mean to be human?
Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci
Sounds HEAVY indeed ~
it's all bound up in an interstellar armageddon
with one hell of a scary monster,
the Shrike or Lord of Pain,
who slays with abandon and gore.
Like the shrike birds of the family Laniidae,
Simmons' Shrike impales its victims
on the thorns of a tree or other sharp objects.
The books are emotional, exciting,
diverse, and profound;
vivid and terrifying,
bawdy and profane.
I reread them before Christmas,
then turned around and started them again!
I want to know them inside out.
I want to understand more
about how Simmons
created and crafted
his complex and heartbreaking narratives:
The Last Three Volumes
of The Hyperion Cantos
Do you like science fiction?
Have you read this series?
If so, what did you think?
I'd love to hear!