WarningMight contain spoilers.

Now this was a really good book. It’s easier to understand the warning against starting with the first one after reading this, because of the large jump in quality, although even the opening here is a bit weak compared to the remainder. It has the same writing style, but with vastly more compelling concepts and plotting.

I remembered from the my first reading that Amalfi the mayor is the protagonist of the last two books. That time, I followed the suggested order. Reading this after the third entry added new dimensions to the story. This time, of course, I’ve already read the whole series.

What a bleak picture the initial description of Scranton paints, with Frank Lutz in charge. Curiously, Lutz looms over the entire story but doesn’t do anything; he even dies offscreen at Frad Hoskins’s hands.

Chris is a more interesting protagonist than the last one. I can’t say I like the idea that his family will forever believe he abandoned them, but that’s a trope of the genre. What I really can’t accept is his dog being killed.

I yearn for space. It thrills and excites me. At the same, it reminds me of my limits, and how… fragile life as we know it is. I wish I could live for centuries and learn things at the same rate as some of the characters here. I can’t imagine being an ordinary citizen in that world, barred from living for centuries or learning more than humans today would believe possible.

Next in series: (#3 in Thoughts & Spoilers: Books: Cities in Flight (1955))