Annihilation, by Jeff Vandermeer ★★★★☆

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Introductory thoughts 8/2/2019

This is the same book that the film from last year was based on. It wasn’t a box office hit, but I loved it. I am looking forward to this book. If it is like the movie, it is about some alien species that alters the genetic information of its host. I think that has interesting implication for life and astrobiology. I am really looking forward to this. My biggest fear is that the detail of this story will be more difficult for me to ascertain and appreciate as the casual story I just finished (Redshirts). I will be making a conscious effort to ensure I am following along. This is book 1 of 3, about as long as the last two books I read.

Finished 8/4/2019

This was another short read. It is only the first in a trilogy. I didn’t love it as much as Redshirts, but it was an enjoyable book. It was pretty much what I expected-a science fiction novel that delves into weird biological stuff. Although, accompanied by that was a great narrator and fairly good story telling. It wasn’t as easy a read as Redshirts, but it was still short enough that I was able to stay focused as it moved quickly through the story.

It makes me want to see the movie again; I can already remember multiple differences. Those differences make me want to move on as well because the ending is very different. I remember when I watched the movie. It was really out there, but I loved it. However, the book leaves me thinking I misunderstood the movie. I thought this was some alien creature that altered the DNA of its host, sort of melding various forms of life and patterns together, but now it seems more of a copying. Woven within there is the infecting of hosts, so I still don’t think my initial idea was that far off. The book leaves me wondering. It makes me want to reread it and discuss it with others. While I may not have loved the book, I still love the premise. I don’t think my not loving the book is necessarily a bad thing. “Love” is really just saying it didn’t evoke as much emotion as I would like from a book, but it is more about the book leaving you thinking. There is no time for emotion. We can have a few moments of fear, confusion, and wonder, but as a whole its about studying this world. While not as emotionally satisfying, it is very much intellectually satisfying.

I intend to continue the series, but I will take a brief break to try other things first. 4/5 Stars.

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