Title: The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet
Author: Becky Chambers
When I first picked up this book I had very little idea what it was about aside the fact that it was a sci-fi and that the cover was pretty.
I was pleasantly surprised when I started reading it to find that it was not at all like those action packed sci-fi books I’d read in the past. This book is definitely something else.
The characters in this book are really diverse. Becky Chambers has come up with one of the most diverse casts I’ve read in any book. Many of the characters are different species, from different planets and they certainly aren’t all straight. I found it refreshing to read a book which represented so many different ideas.
Speaking of ideas, this book is probably the most idealistic book I have ever read. Where this isn’t much action there are certainly many different narratives which all seem to have a ‘moral’ or represent an idea. I won’t go too far into detail here – as that could spoil the book but often I found myself comparing things and ideas that were represented in the story to things in the real world. The ideas and characters in this book were the major driving factor as the book lacks the sort of complex plots often seen in sci-fi.
One of the major issues I had with this book was the amount of perspectives spead throughout it. This book is told from the perspectives of almost every character in the book – which oftentimes made it harder to relate to the characters individually as there really wasn’t enough time to get to know all of them enough to care about them all. Sometimes I wasn’t even really sure whose head I was in.
Another issue I found was the chapter lengths. Whilst some of them were short – others were quite long making it laborious to read at times. Often when the chapters were long – there were also multiple points of view (another reason I found the amount of perspectives confusing). It may be a personal thing, but I prefer shorter chapter lengths as I feel when I turn that new chapter page that I am actually progressing through the book somewhat.
Overall, I enjoyed this book. It was a refreshing change from the sci-fi books I am used to reading. I’d highly recommend it to fans of Star Wars and to readers who are looking for something more ‘diverse’ to pop onto their reading list.
I’m rating this book 3/5.