Let me first clear the air… I did not finish this book.
That is my confession, so you know now, this will not be a “review”. These are my thoughts only.
LoveStar was the March book club pick for our participation in the Critical Era book club.
LoveStar is a novel firmly placed in the science fiction genre. I knew that going in. Completely. I continue to say that I appreciate and lovingly participate in the Critical Era book club. Many, many times they have expanded my reading list and some of those times the choices have been a fantastic and surprising success, others, not so much. LoveStar falls in the “not so much” category for me this time around.
As a very young reader, fantasy and/or science fiction never appealed to me. Especially those futuristic fantasies warning of impending doom or end-of-the-world stories that took place well, well off in to the future. I just never got in to it. But I also have to say, knowing this, I did pick up 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami for what was then called Opinionless book club. It was bizarre, absolutely, but I enjoyed much of it, truthfully. And the discussion following was some of the best and funniest talks we’ve had in the club. So again, knowing this, it was not that difficult for me to attempt LoveStar.
The underlying, dooming message of the book emerges easily from the start. Yes, our dependence upon technology and our ever increasing obsession with consumerism is nothing but to our detriment. Absolutely. I was readily willing to discuss and interpret these opinions and warnings, however, it was the presentation of these warnings that for me, were just far too outlandish and downright silly for me to wish to continue to the novel’s end. From the ability to “rewind” your children for better efficiency, to growing new body parts for special occasions and hooking oneself in to the REGRET machine and some such I could not proceed further. This presentation only reaffirmed my dislike in reading from this genre. It began to feel like an obligation to continue. That’s not a good approach to my reading.
So, this is not a “review” of LoveStar, no, not at all, this is merely my putting my thoughts down and a way to, I suppose, make myself feel at rest with my decision to put it away (far, far away). You may wish to read very convincing and wonderful reviews, you know, ones that did make me feel a (very brief) twinge of doubt about putting the book away…but I do encourage you to read Karli’s and Aaron’s reviews from Typographical Era.
Jackie, I believe, is perservering and will continue to the end, so perhaps more positive thoughts will follow next week from a different Literary Hoarder. But for this Hoarder, there is no love for the LoveStar and I’m moving forward with my reading schedule. (Already, a dozen more have appeared like shiny objects to distract me, but I will beaver on with the original list first!)
From Goodreads: LoveStar, the enigmatic and obsessively driven founder of the LoveStar corporation, has unlocked the key to transmitting data via birdwaves, thus freeing mankind from wires and devices, and allowing consumerism, technology, and science to run rampant over all aspects of daily life. Cordless modern men and women are paid to howl advertisements at unsuspecting passers-by, REGRET machines eliminate doubt over roads not taken, soul mates are identified and brought together (while existing, unscientifically validated relationships are driven remorselessly asunder), and rocketing the dead into the sky becomes both a status symbol and a beautiful, cathartic show for those left behind.
Indridi and Sigrid, two blissfully happy young lovers, have their perfect worlds threatened (along with Indridi’s sanity) when they are “calculated apart” and are forced to go to extreme lengths to prove their love. Their journey ultimately puts them on a collision course with LoveStar, who is on his own mission to find what might become the last idea in the world.
Steeped in influences ranging from Italo Calvino, Jorge Luis Borges, and Kurt Vonnegut to George Orwell, Douglas Adams, and Monty Python, Andri Snær Magnason has created a surreal yet uncomfortably familiar world, where the honey embrace of love does its utmost to survive amid relentless and overpowering controls.