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REVIEW: Road to Mars by Eric Idle

REVIEW SUMMARY: A solid sci fi book with some statements about comedy and humans.


BRIEF SYNOPSIS:2 comedians and their robot (who attempts to unravel the secret of comedy) become embroiled in a terrorist plot.

PROS: Some great characters and decent action once you get past the slower parts of the book.
CONS: Starts out a bit slow for me, and the narrative of the secondary story gets annoying at some points
BOTTOM LINE: If you like Eric Idle and are looking for some light science fiction, this would be a book to read.

So let me begin here by saying, this book is not intended (in my opinion) to be a laugh out loud book. There is humor in the book, but its not

a Terry Pratchett type of book where you find yourself giggling out loud. The book has a main plotline covering the adventures of two comedians who are working their way through the solar system, and decide that they want to work the big show on Mars. The secondary plot involves this professor and a dissertation on comedy written by a robot that is with the two comedians.

These two plot lines intertwine throughout the book and the transitions were not always that smooth. There would be points where the perspective would jump from the comedians and thier robot directly to the professor explaining some of his problems without much more than a paragraph spacing and others where they were separated by being different chapters. Combine this with a relatively slow start (the real action does not begin until about page 80) and its a very hard book to get started with.

The characters, on the other hand, are all well represented and feel like you have seen them someplace before. This is really where Eric shines in the book in that he creates characters that are believable but recognizable.

Overall the book is a decent soft science fiction book with some humor. I will be honest and say I was expecting something more humorous. Furthermore, the slow start really kept me from getting all that absorbed and extended the experience in that I really didn’t feel drawn to the book until I passed that start.

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