Recent Books — Ready Player One, Map of Time, Marooned in Realtime, Hex

A bunch of ferry line reading:

* “Ready Player One”:amazon by Ernest Cline. The first quarter was awful as the author has the characters painfully explain his world to us. After that a fun romp. But ultimately forgettable. Amazon says 4.5 stars, that is a little crazy, 2 stars in my book
* “The Map of Time”:amazon by Felix J. Palma. H. G. Wells muses on time travel, and his novel “The Time Traveller” creates a furor of public interest. Wells finds himself drawn into several fraudulent time travel scams, though one of the scams has a noble romantic goal. Actual time travelers arrive on the scene, some with good intent and some with criminal intent, to further complicate the story. The threads are all nicely tied together. Amazon says 3.4 stars, I’d go 4 stars.
* “Marooned in Realtime”:amazon by Vernor Vinge. Not sure how I missed this one, very nice tale of conspiracy and far future society. Amazon says 4.5 stars, I’d say 4.
* “Hex”:amazon by Allen Steele. Bad science fiction. Terrible characters, ridiculous plot devices. The only vaguely entertaining part is the discussion of a Dyson sphere, but go read “Rendezvous with Rama”:amazon or “Ringworld”:amazon if you like thinking about aliens and massive engineering feats. Amazon says 4 stars, this is a 1 star book.