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The Children of the Sky

de Vernor Vinge

Outros autores: Veja a seção outros autores.

Séries: Zones of Thought (3)

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Ten years have passed on Tines World, where Ravna Bergnsdot and a number of human children ended up after a disaster that nearly obliterated humankind throughout the galaxy. Ravna and the pack animals for which the planet is named have survived a war, and Ravna has saved more than one hundred children who were in cold-sleep aboard the vessel that brought them. While there is peace among the Tines, there are those among them--and among the humans--who seek power...and no matter the cost, these malcontents are determined to overturn the fledgling civilization that has taken root since the humans landed. On a world of fascinating wonders and terrifying dangers, Vernor Vinge has created a powerful novel of adventure and discovery that will entrance the many readers of A Fire Upon the Deep. Filled with the inventiveness, excitement, and human drama that have become hallmarks of his work, this new novel is sure to become another great milestone in Vinge's already stellar career.… (mais)
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Ordinarily, I am a strong proponent of reading fiction series in publication order, even when that sequence differs from the narrative chronology of the books. Vernor Vinge's Zones of Thought series is a rare exception to the rule. I did read it in publication order, but the second book is a distant prequel to the first, and the third is a very near sequel to the first. I think the best reading order would perhaps be neither publication nor chronology, but to read the third book after the first, and save the second for last. (I really think A Deepness in the Sky is the best of the three and could be fully appreciated as a standalone novel.)

Although this third book The Children of the Sky is nearly as long and complex as either of the others, it doesn't have their level of innovation in character or world vision, largely carrying forth some key cast and the setting of A Fire Upon the Deep. As a result, and especially in contrast to A Deepness in the Sky, it often feels like a mere epilogue to Fire. The ending of Children leaves many of its largest dilemmas and conflicts unresolved, and it pretty clearly implies that Vinge was hoping to eventually write at least one more book to further the story. So this third and sadly final book of Zones of Thought is vexed by some of the weaknesses typical of the second book of a trilogy.

I had planned to defer reading The Children of the Sky for a little longer after reading the second book, but I was prompted to pick it up sooner due to the recent death of its author. My memories of A Fire Upon the Deep were fuzzier than I would have liked, but Vinge was very artful with providing the right amount of indirect exposition so that I felt like I was on top of the story anyhow. I did enjoy the book, even though it was slighter than the other two: perhaps 50% of the readerly illumination for 70% of the reading effort, as compared to one of the others. Vinge kept me caring about his characters and he did surprise me with a couple of major plot twists. I don't want to pan a book that was in many ways admirable, but it was definitely the least of its series.

In the closing pages of the book, Vinge incidentally plays the trick that had so impressed Samuel Delany in Heinlein's Starship Troopers. The presumptively "white" humans of the story with their Nordic-sounding names all turn out to be phenotypically black.
2 vote paradoxosalpha | May 1, 2024 |
Children of the Sky (2011), the third volume of Vernor Vinge’s Zones of Thought series, is a direct sequel to A Fire Upon the Deep (1992). Set a couple of years after the Battle on Starship Hill, the story moves back and forth between human characters and the Tines, telepathic dog-like pack animals whose intelligence depends on the number and proximity of pack members. Each pack seems to have a specialty—Tycoon is an entrepreneur, Pilgrim is a scout, and Vendacious is a perfectly named villain.
The world-building is complex, original, and internally consistent. I think it must have inspired writers such as Adrian Tchaikovsky, Peter F. Hamilton, and Alistair Reynolds. The story is not so much a space opera as a planetary adventure set at the edge of the slow zone where changes in the laws of physics degrade artificial intelligence. It is a tribute to Vinge’s skill as a storyteller that we care about several of these packs as much as we do the several human characters with whom they interact.
Caveat: Vinge is not a writer who spoon-feeds the exposition, and readers are well-advised to reacquaint themselves with the slow-zone universe before diving in. ( )
  Tom-e | Apr 29, 2024 |
This is a very different book from [b:A Fire Upon the Deep|77711|A Fire Upon the Deep|Vernor Vinge|http://photo.goodreads.com/books/1316727696s/77711.jpg|1253374]. The first book was a galaxy-spanning, epic space opera with the Best Aliens Ever. This one is about political intrigue amongst and between two different species and is confined to a single planet. As in the first, though, the characters, both humans and Tines, are fully realized and interesting. I find myself already missing them and the unfolding story, which for me is a pretty good sign I will re-read the book at some point. (If that happens, I'll be raising my rating to 5 stars.) There is also an implicit promise for yet another book set on Tines' World. ( )
  Treebeard_404 | Jan 23, 2024 |
Though the weakest book in the series, Children still had some extremely strong points. For example, the Choir is explored in depth. Most of the trouble lies with the story structure. While some of the politics is clever and compelling, it does not provide enough depth or urgency to move the story along.
Still looking forward to reading more Vinge though. ( )
  MXMLLN | Jan 12, 2024 |
There are books that never go where you expect. And then there are books that never go where you want them to.

This book is both of those at different times.

First off the obvious - it's a sequel to a personal favourite story that's arguably one of the best sci fi novels ever. And no, it's not any where near as awesome. (They never are).

If you haven't read that book, this one probably won't make much sense, or even convey how wonderful the original was.

This book is a very different kind of story - the original draws the backdrop the new one plays in front of.

The contrast between the two is striking.

This book is so much smaller in scope. It encompasses only a small portion of a single planet rather than most of the Milky Way. There are only a handful of characters, not dozens of groups scattered all over, and instead of millions of civilizations of billions of people dropping like flies, tragedy here is very small scale and personal.

The biggest tragedy might be the weak ending trying desperately to segue into another (as yet unwritten) sequel.

Chunks of it are adventure tale, chunks of it naive politics, there's even a hint of romance here and there. But it's all one thing, then the next, changing jarringly from section to section. Just as I'd get into it, I'd have the rug yanked out again.

It has potential, and it's moments, but ends up falling short of what it could have been.

If you loved A Fire Upon The Deep, pick this up as a return visit to Tines World to fill in some local colour.

For me it's mostly a miss I had a hard time judging on its own merits. ( )
  furicle | Aug 5, 2023 |
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Vernor Vingeautor principaltodas as ediçõescalculado
Martiniere, StephanArtista da capaautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
Wyman, OliverNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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Two years after the battle on Starship Hill
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Ten years have passed on Tines World, where Ravna Bergnsdot and a number of human children ended up after a disaster that nearly obliterated humankind throughout the galaxy. Ravna and the pack animals for which the planet is named have survived a war, and Ravna has saved more than one hundred children who were in cold-sleep aboard the vessel that brought them. While there is peace among the Tines, there are those among them--and among the humans--who seek power...and no matter the cost, these malcontents are determined to overturn the fledgling civilization that has taken root since the humans landed. On a world of fascinating wonders and terrifying dangers, Vernor Vinge has created a powerful novel of adventure and discovery that will entrance the many readers of A Fire Upon the Deep. Filled with the inventiveness, excitement, and human drama that have become hallmarks of his work, this new novel is sure to become another great milestone in Vinge's already stellar career.

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