Years of Salt & Rice
Escape from Kathmandu
- This is
Nepal as it was in the 80's
A throwaway novel, when compared to his masterworks like the Mars Trilogy,
this entertaining read is highly recommended for anyone who has
[or dreams of trekking] in Nepal. He evokes the
Kathmandu of the late 70s
and 80s perfectly – from named restaurants and hippie highpoints to the bustle,
muck and medieval layers of Kathmandu and its environs. Descriptions of the
town and trekking the nearby mountains ring true, although the plot itself
is too thin to support much examination.
It’s a fun book, in the style of The Ascent of Rum Doodle.
Antarctica - Kim Stanley Robinson - [journal 10/12/2006] Reading this book as we approached Antarctica on our cruise, Robinson's done it again - his geology is rock solid, [only John McPhee can write so captivatingly about plate tectonics] so much so, that once again, I started thinking of his fictional Antarctica as the real thing. As we drove thru the Beech tree forests of
Tierra del Fuego, it conjured his images of a former Antarctica covered with hardy Beech forest, to be re-discovered as fossilized beech leaf mats by Robinson's scientists. Elegantly weaving in Antarctic history, Robinson's story proceeds on multiple lines, with the modern day plotlines paralleling the explorers. The science is least fictional of any of his works, but the
climbing and trekking scenes are riveting; the crevasse scenes are white knuckle memory time for anyone's who's ever traversed a glacier, even though his mountaineers have tracking toys we never dreamed of.