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Communion of Dreams Kindle Edition
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|Length: 348 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
Overall it's fairly well written and has a less straightforward plot than a lot of modern sci-fi. Dialogue is ok. A couple of things prevent me from giving it a higher rating.
(1) the first part of the book really drags. It doesn't really become "interesting" until the final third or so. it just took me a long time to get into this.
(2) a lot of characters are introduced early on, but are very thinly drawn, to the point that it gets hard to tell who's who, and many of them are not that important to the story, or disappear off the map completely for long periods of time.
The pacing of the story is very leisurely until toward the end; I think the concept behind this story might work better as a novella or a short story.
Against this background, Jim tells the story of assembling the team of investigators -- including artists, not just scientists -- and their trip to the artifact. Once they arrive it chronicles the challenges the team encounters as they try to make sense of the artifact and the deeper mysteries it represents. Like Clarke and Kubrick's "mystical" Star-Child in "2001," Downey takes his characters beyond the bounds of traditional science and into the realm of dreams and beyond. His ending surprised me and provided an intriguing take on the question "Why are we still alone?"
I really enjoyed "Communion of Dreams" and found myself wishing that it didn't end quite so quickly. I wanted to take more time to explore the world Downey created and the social conflicts that remained after the massive loss of life more than a generation earlier. A deeper understanding of those conflicts would have increased the underlying tensions in the book and made the villains feel more "real." Still, it is not faint praise to say "I wish a book was longer!" I hope Downey will return to this alternate future history and tell us more about the deeds and dreams of the people who live there.
I am not the most eloquent writer, in fact I am a sculptor and professor by trade. However I can, without hesitation, state this is one of the most fascinating books I have read in a great many years. It keeps you transfixed on the characters, their moires and social foibles, and yet allows you to see them as human...even Seth!
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who even slightly questions our role in the universe. Mr. Downey has a touch on the universal pulse of being that unique. I look forward, with great anticipation, to the other "artifacts" he has hidden for us.
Thank You James for a wonderful ride!!!
Mark Alan Mueller
Communion of Dreams