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Amph Red Mars, Green Mars, Blue Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson: The Thread about these books!

Discussion in 'Archive: SF&F: Books and Comics' started by Andalite-Bandit, Jan 4, 2006.

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  1. Andalite-Bandit

    Andalite-Bandit Jedi Padawan star 6

    Apr 25, 2005
    I read this trilogy several years ago and found it to be extremely interesting, although a bit heavy on the scientific jargon and technical details.

    This series takes place over a 200 year time period and chronicles the colonization of Mars, from the first 100 settlers up to the point when a terraformed Mars holds a population in the millions. A technology developed in the 2060's extends the human lifespan dramatically, allowing the main characters to survive into the 2200's. The Martian colony is confronted with a wide range of political issues, the major ones dealing with whether or not to terraform mars, and the other one being a desire to be independent from Earth. The most interesting part of the series for me was seeing Robinsons vision of the future, especially in Blue Mars, where the entire solar system is being colonized and fusion powered ships can traverse the distances between worlds in days or weeks.

    Has anybody else read this series?

    There's a fourth book, called The Martians, which is composed of short stories. I haven't read this one unfortunately.
  2. Jabba-wocky

    Jabba-wocky Chosen One star 9

    May 4, 2003
    I prefer The Years of Rice and Salt.

    While the first book had an interesting concept, the series as a whole seemed to invoke an "epic" scale simply for the sake of doing so. The concept seemed to be litle more than following the lives of a certain number of characters. Admittedly, that can be very interesting sometimes. Here, though there were hundred page stretches were the only discernible change or progression was "who was sleeping with whom." I read Red, Blue, and Green, but I was less impressed with each one.

    Robinson seems to specialize in epics, but the problem to me that not every story written actually is, making it a hit-or-miss affair.
  3. Raja_Io

    Raja_Io Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 28, 2005
    At last! I've been looking for someone who knows the books for two years... And no one wants to borrow them because I've got them only in English, and they're quite long and I think people are a bit... um, afraid?

    At last I can discuss them somewhere :D
  4. LadyPadme

    LadyPadme Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 26, 2002

    I read this series years ago; I actually loved all the scientific jargon, and how he described the way they converted the atmosphere, got fresh water, slowed down Mars' rotation, and extended life. What I actually didn't enjoy were the characters themselves. Their interactions, IMO, seemed flat and boring. And in the end, we never found out what happened to that Japanese chick.
  5. CarrKicksDoor

    CarrKicksDoor Jedi Master star 3

    Jan 16, 2005
    Oh, I love these books and have all three of them. I tried reading The Martians once, but never could get into it, and you know, none of Kim Stanley Robinson's other books have ever held the same kind of appeal to me as these three have. I've tried reading other books he's written, but I just can't ever make it past the first chapter, which is pretty odd for me, because once I start a book, I usually finish it. I'm not sure why I had so much trouble with the other books.

    I do like these three Mars books. They're very interesting, and very intricately detailed. And I think the conflicts between Earth and Mars are reasonable.

    But the other thing I had problems with was that their method of timekeeping was too complicated for me, and although I understand that there had to be some sort of timekeeping method, one that required that much explanation in a book and required continual explanation so the reader didn't get lost really didn't work for me. I had to keep reminding myself that Jackie Boone was not, in fact, still sixteen years old.

  6. Raja_Io

    Raja_Io Jedi Master star 4

    Aug 28, 2005
    I liked the timeslip ;)

    And I found the characters interesting, especially Maya, Ann and Sax. And a shame Arkady got killed... As for Hiroko, I think it would ruin the atmosphere if we got to know what happened do her and her pack. I can't say I loved her, but, well, that was the point of this character, to be mysterious.

    The scientific jargon was... um, I think I liked it more when I was reading Green Mars (the only one I've got in Polish, as the tranlation is barely available), in English it was really difficult for me. I liked it, though, it sounded quite realistic.
    But did anyone understand Bao Shuyo's (I guess that was her name) theory?
  7. MariahJade2

    MariahJade2 Former Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 5 VIP

    Mar 18, 2001
    I've read all three and I liken it to swimming in honey. You have to work at it and it's slow going but it sure is sweet. The descriptive detail was so real it felt like you were really there. I agree about the characters being less interesting than Mars itself though.
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