Hyperion by Dan Simmons
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I really enjoy the way this story (or stories, as it were) are told. Seven pilgrims are on a journey to meet the Shrike, a mythical, murderous creature that can control time. Each member of the group must relate their story to the rest during the pilgrimage. Each of these stories is told in a different way, giving each character a distinct voice. Each story is also told during a particular leg of the voyage. I think each of the characters are intended to represent one of the "7 deadly sins".
Father Hoyt tells a story of pride while the pilgrims travel on a tree-ship through space. He bears the weight of his contemporary who was not satisfied to remain in ignorance but demanded that he learn the true nature of a small tribe on Hyperion.
Colonel Kassad tells a story of lust while they enter the atmosphere of Hyperion and land. He is enamored with a specter that only appears to him when he is surrounded by violence.
The poet Silenus tells a story of gluttony as they travel upriver. Gluttony here, not in the sense of consumption of food, but in the sense of selfishness. All other concerns are trivial compared to his quest to create the perfect poetry.
The scholar Weintraub tells a story of sloth as they sail the sea of grass. He dreams of the shrike, the Lord of Pain, and disobeys the shrike's order to render his daughter as an offering.
The templar Masteen is lost before he tells his tale. I'm left to assume that his is the tale of envy.
The detective Lamia tells a story of greed while they travel by cable car over a frozen mountain range. On the surface she is telling the tale of her client, Johnny. Johnny is an AI created as an experiment by the techno core, a collective of artificial intelligences. Really, though, this is the story of the fractured core, and their greed for ultimate intelligence. I really enjoyed the pulpy noir style used in telling this story.
The consul tells a story of wrath as the group retires in castle of the dead. He seeks retribution against the powers that led to death of his grandmother.
Unfortunately, we don't get closure as we're left with a cliffhanger leading into the next book. I'll definitely be reading it to see what happens next.
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Posted by Adam Jones at 1:33 PM