Ringworld by Larry Niven
Published by Gollancz on 2005
Buy on Amazon
Pierson's puppeteers, strange, three-legged, two-headed aliens, have discovered an immense structure in a hitherto unexplored part of the universe. Frightened of meeting the builders of such a structure, the puppeteers set about assembling a team consisting of two humans, a puppeteer and a kzin, an alien not unlike an eight-foot-tall, red-furred cat, to explore it. The artefact is a vast circular ribbon of matter, some 180 million miles across, with a sun at its centre - the Ringworld. But the expedition goes disastrously wrong when the ship crashlands and its motley crew faces a trek across thousands of miles of the Ringworld's surface.
I remember this was one of my most favorite books in high school. However, at 36 I was just like meh. I mean it is a good book, and it is a great model for newer Sci-Fi, but It just didn’t hold my attention like it used to. I think part of the reason that I was so meh about this book was that I had the plot of a different book confused with this one and unless I am confusing Ringworld with Ben Bova’s Mars I have no I idea what that book could be. So when I got to the end, and it was not the book I thought it was well.I was unnaturally angry. Heh.
If I was to judge the book based on its own merits, then it is just an ok book. The plot was….there is not a lot happening plot wise. I was bored most of the time until I got to the end THEN I loved it. The last 20 pages were outstanding. Does it make up for the rest of the book? It stopped me from giving it a three and instead Give it a 4. I DO want to read the other Ringworld books cause I am dying to know about the Ringworld Civilization. I just hope the other books are faster paced. I can’t take much more details of flying on and on and on. Ughh.
This is considered a sci-fi classic, and many later themes in sci-fi were based on Ringworld. So it is an important book. I feel that we can hold a book up and say it is important but still think it is crap personally. I am glad that Nevin was able to make such a mark on modern sci-fi. Word of caution though, I read that a lot of feminist take issue with his books cause the women characters are one dimensional. Personally, this fails to bother me. I mean I read the Gor Saga so it is not like I can tell people how much I love Gor and then turn around and be all like well the ladies in Ringworld lacked a personality. They DO, but I feel that those people are missing the point. Teela was a product of the Birth RIight Lotteries, and the other lady doesn’t even show up until the last 20 pages, so not a lot of room to develop her. I haven’t read the other books, so I cant say if they make an appearance there or not but for THIS book I get what the author was doing. But if you are the type to shy away because of what an author believes or behavior then well….This book will piss you off. ..For the others out there I would say it depends on how much you like hard sci-fi. If you like it then read it but if you don’t then stay far away from this book. If you are fascinated with space and aliens and such then there is enough to get you through to the good part and believe me this book can be tedious at times.
Sign up to get a copy of the tools I use to run my business and a free email course on book blogging!