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Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 9. Juni 2004

3.0 von 5 Sternen 2 Kundenrezensionen

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Produktbeschreibungen

Synopsis

This revised version of Duane Simolke's science fiction adventure Degranon features more gay characters and a sharper focus on diversity themes. On the planet Valchondria, no illness exists, gay marriage is legal, and everyone is a person of color. However, a group called "the Maintainers" carefully monitors everyone's speech, actions, and weight; the Maintainers also force so-called "colorsighted" people to hide their ability to see in color. The brilliant scientist Taldra loves her twin gay sons and thinks of them as the hope for Valchondria's future, but one of them becomes entangled in the cult of Degranon, while the other becomes stranded on the other side of a doorway through time. Can they find their way home and help Taldra save their world? "A must read." --Joe Wright, reviewer for StoneWall Society (http://www stonewallsociety.com). "A reminder of the danger of fanaticism." --Mark Kendrick, author of the gay time-travel romance Stealing Some Time. "Duane Simolke's latest offering is a fascinating scifi excursion into a world as unique as his singular vision." --Ronald L.

Donaghe, author of the series "Common Threads in the Life," which includes Common Sons and The Blind Season.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Duane Simolke wrote The Acorn Stories, Degranon, Holding Me Together, and New Readings of Winesburg, Ohio. He also edited and co-wrote the spin-off The Acorn Gathering, donating that book?s royalties to the American Cancer Society. Simolke lives in Lubbock, Texas, and received a Ph.D. in English from Texas Tech University.

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Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
While I feel somewhat bad criticizing someone's first work, Degranon is just not ready for public consumption. There is a reason it was not printed by one of the major printing houses. It feels like it was written by a thirteen year-old. I think the best way to illustrate this is to give some examples:
"Sydra instinctively reached for her laser pistol, but then remembered setting it on her desk. The Top Maintainers never allowed weapons in the upper levels of Urloan Control. Apparently, the Top Maintainers never expected the leader of the Degran cult to slip past the most advanced security systems in all of Valchondria. 'What is your aim? What did you do to them?'"
"With his access to Life Unit and his secret understanding of both temporal doorways and spatial doorways, Geln had managed to adjust the doorway enough to get it closer than any of his people had ever gotten to the time of the great kings of Degranon. And now he was taking Taldra's child there. Yes, he would let Telius live, but he would avenge Taldra's rejection, her insult."
"As the lights springing into his face and body allowed his features to emerge, they revealed a middle-aged man of immediately evident wisdom and confidence-his brown head fully shaved, his dark eyes gleaming with wonder, his simple robe stretched by a muscular body. But most surprising and impressive of all, he didn't look the least bit frightened or astounded. Instead, he merely looked delighted and curious, like an explorer who knew where he was going but not what he would find when he arrived."
Eep. I actually feel maybe the book should have between one and two stars, but because I was sucked in by a positive review (five stars!), I feel something of a need to balance it out.
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This is a dystopic novel in the tradition of 1984 and A Clockwork Orange, with a more optomistic feel, and with a time travel twist. The planets are earth-like but not Earth, and the characters all belong to groups that we would call minorities; actually, just about everything here diverges from the obvious or expected. You need to read it twice to understand all of it, but not to enjoy it.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf Amazon.com (beta) (Kann Kundenrezensionen aus dem "Early Reviewer Rewards"-Programm beinhalten)

Amazon.com: 3.4 von 5 Sternen 12 Rezensionen
1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Just a book. But one of my favorites. 4. März 2017
Von Vanessa Kings - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
This very rich sci-fi story captivated me from the beginning. From the main topic of a land where there are no minorities, no differences between races or sexual orientations, to the writing style that transports you into the story in an effortless way, I read this book in record time, unable to put it down.

It’s amazing how the author managed to create such complex society, with characters that felt real, with real struggles, doubts, and concerns. I personally found Taldra’s character fascinating, her commitment with her people and her family are exceptional and add a touch of realism that is hard to accomplish in sci-fi stories.

Degranon includes some controversial topics such as religion, oppression, authoritarianism, fanaticism and homosexuality, and although some of those topics are not explicit, they are an important part of the story development, and leave the reader thinking, after finishing the book, in our own society and cultures.

The fact that Simolke spent so many years creating and editing this book truly shows across its pages. I didn’t read the first edition, with lesser homosexual characters, but this one seemed perfect, I think the author reached a balance of the story and characters that make this book very different from others in the same genre.

I really enjoyed the story and I’m looking forward to read the sequel. I believe I had been trapped into the Degranon’s pages, which some might say “It’s just a book” ;)
2.0 von 5 Sternen Every Sci-Fi Cliche 13. Juli 2014
Von Michael Holland - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verifizierter Kauf
The planet of Valchondria was once great. They sent people out among the stars to colonize other worlds, but then they turned inward and forgot about their former glory. An engineered virus has eliminated most diseases, but there’s nothing much to live fore. An ever more oppressive regime seeks to remove every perceived source of differences between people, attempting to turn the population into docile sheep. However, some of these sheep are not so docile, such as the scientist Taldra, who wants to bring back the glory days of Valchondria by returning to space.

Although Valchondria may have forgotten its colonies, at least one of them remembers where they came from. The people of Degranon are caught up in almost never ending civil wars over various interpretations of their sacred texts. At least one of these factions has discovered portals which can transport them to other worlds, and sometimes other times. Through portals to Valchondira, they send spies like Geln who seek to infiltrate the ruling parties that control their former home and bring about a revolution that will restore the planet to the Degran’s view of its former glory.

You generally expect that a story which spans planets and generations is going to take some time to come together, as the author introduces the people and cultures that are going to be the major players, but “Degranon” never quite gels. The plot seems to veer off in different directions, even up to the end. It’s one thing to keep the reader guessing about where things are going, it’s another when things are so disjointed that it appears the author didn’t have a clue either.

A big factor keeping you from getting into the story is the writing, which practically epitomizes the kind of adolescent awkwardness that many sci-fi haters characterize the whole genre with. Reading this story requires you to stumble over stiff formal dialog full of invented phrases that are repeated ad nauseam. The writing contributes to a lack of depth for the characters. The central character of Taldra is reasonably well drawn, mostly by dint of the fact that she is in almost every scene, but the rest of those around her, especially the critical roles of her sons, are not very believable. In particular, the rather pivotal character called Jase Dawn almost seems like an after thought.

“Degranon” tackles some heavy themes, such as totalitarian regimes and religious extremism. Unfortunately it does it so poorly that it never scores any points. Orwell’s “1984” or Huxley’s “Brave New World” are probably much better commentaries on such subjects, and both of them have stood the test of time, as relevant today as when they were written.
3.0 von 5 Sternen Gee, it was a struggle to read this tale... 17. Juni 2013
Von Blatimore Phil - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
I was rather disappointed with this story. The ideas had merit but it felt more like a storybook read to children. It gave me very little stimulation and involvement in the characters.

It just seemed too disjointed and the timing off. Perhaps, the issue is one of coherence since there was a lot of jumping around. Also, insufficient information e.g. tell me why this society can't have twins?

Don't get me wrong. There were some interesting revelations in the book in the aspect of taking things too literally and violence over beliefs. Honestly, I can't say the author immersed me in the story where I was satisfied after reading it. It's ok but not high on my list. I suppose Donaghe(COMMON SONS) and I have a different opinion on the subject. Actually, I selected this work reading Donaghe's review since I appreciated his writing skills. Oh well, we all see and feel things differently at times.
3.0 von 5 Sternen its hard to read 22. Januar 2014
Von RedguyDorian - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
not easy for someone hard time reading . I'm try hard people helping me. I like more of a easyer books .
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Degranon: A Science Fiction Adventure by Duane Simolke 6. Dezember 2010
Von Elisa - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Admitedly sci-fiction is not my cup of tea and that is a big gap if you want to read Degranon, since I think the main inspiration for this novel are the old fashioned classic of sci-fiction, but more the '70 and '80 style. In those year, due to the political climate, people were trying to understand the right level of government influence in your everyday life, and to do that utopian worlds were developed on fictional novels (as often happen).

Degranon has an interesting approach: is the world a better place to live if there are no differences among the men, nor of colors or of genders? If people is unable to see colors, and they see only in Black and White, then they cannot single out people due to the race; if being gay is as ordinary as being heterosexual, then it's not something you are sigled out for; if being woman, or man, doesn't influence your authority or your chances to be a leader, then it's not something you have to fight for... but to remove all differences is the path to a better world or to a tyranny? I think the most excel minds are born as a challenge to the system, and so in a society like the one at the beginning of this novel, it's only natural that you will have a situation of clash with the power.

It's interesting to notice that, even if the author himself says in the preface that Degranon included a gay theme (While I thought of Degranon as a science fiction novel that included gay themes but only minor gay characters, I found that many of my readers identified with those gay aspects. (...) With all of that in mind, I kept wondering what Degranon would be like if I rewrote some of the major characters as gay.), there is not even once the word "gay" in all the novel: the homosexuality is so blended (or recognized) in this future society, that there is not need to singling out someone as gay or heterosexual. Actually you understand someone is gay only since he is in a relationship, or he is interested in someone else of his same-sex. So I quite disagree with other reviews I read about this novel, when the reviewer warns the possible sci-fiction reader of the gay-theme of the story, since there is really little of gay in the story.

The second aspect of the novel I noticed, and liked, is an almost regression to family value; in this modern society the family has lost of importance. Dr. Lorfeltez, later Taldra, should be impartial, her quest should be to create something better for the society, but she is also a mother, and a lover, and I felt for her impossible to separate these two side of her persona. Her choices are both for her people and her sons, and when the choices clash against each other, I'm not sure she is impartial enough; that is basically something very old fashioned, she is indead a mother, and that is something that no future government can change. Taldra is also the reason why this novel is and is not gay themed: Taldra is a woman, a mother, and this is mostly her story, nothing gay here; her twin sons are gays, or at least you can understand that (two times, referring to Argen's possible partner, people use the word "boyfriend"). Now I'm not entirely sure Taldra's behaviour is healthy, and I read a tad of fanaticism in her, but I suppose her motherly nature helps in balancing it.
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