The Long Way to A Small, Angry Planet

The Long Way to A Small, Angry Planet

Book - 2016
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"When Rosemary Harper joins the crew of the Wayfarer, she isn't expecting much. The patched-up ship has seen better days, but it offers her everything she could possible want: a spot to call home, a chance to explore the far-off corners of the galaxy and some distance from her past. And nothing could be further from what she's known than the crew of the Wayfarer."--Page [4] of cover
Publisher: New York : Harper Voyager, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2016]
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9780062444134
0062444131
Characteristics: 443 pages ; 21 cm

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shayshortt
Nov 10, 2018

The plot setup led me to believe that the main thrust story would involve the crew getting into trouble at Hedra Ka, where Galactic politics would enter into the equation, and the desire for the resources to be mined in Toremi territory would lead to problems for the Wayfarer. However, much of the story actually takes place aboard the Wayfarer on the journey out to Hedra Ka. They must travel there the long way, since there are no existing wormholes to speed their trip. From there they will punch a tunnel to a marker that will be placed at the other end by another crew. There is plenty of science working beneath the premises Chambers puts forth, but her story is character-driven, and technology is decidedly not the focus. Rather it is the development of the relationships among the crew on this journey that take center stage.

Full review: https://shayshortt.com/2018/11/09/the-long-way-to-a-small-angry-planet/

DPLSaraQT Oct 21, 2018

If you start this book expecting Firefly, you’ll be disappointed. You’ll be delighted, though, if you go into it expecting Great British Baking Show in space: high on diversity and collegiality, low on conflict or tension. So if you need a gentle cup of tea with a bit of aliens and black holes on the side, this is the book for you.

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WoodneathReads
Oct 14, 2018

This space opera had a lot of similarities to the TV show Firefly. So if you're a fan of that kind of humor and quirkiness you will probably enjoy this story. The ending definitely made me want to check out the next one in the trilogy. Right away we meet the crew of the Wayfarer and shortly after that a new crew member joins the team. She may have a mysterious past she's trying to escape. I liked that the story is told through multiple points of view and that we really get to know the characters deeply and personally. They are a diverse group of people who start off alien to each other but grow to be family. This is what I would call "cozy sci-fi" as nothing too intense or violent happens and all things sexual are implied, but not graphic. Did I just make up a new genre? --Sheri (See more of my picks by following WoodneathSheri)

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WoodneathSheri
Oct 08, 2018

This space opera had a lot of similarities to the TV show Firefly. So if you're a fan of that kind of humor and quirkiness you will probably enjoy this story. The ending definitely made me want to check out the next one in the trilogy. Right away we meet the crew of the Wayfarer and shortly after that a new crew member joins the team. She may have a mysterious past she's trying to escape. I liked that the story is told through multiple points of view and that we really get to know the characters deeply and personally. They are a diverse group of people who start off alien to each other but grow to be family. This is what I would call "cozy sci-fi" as nothing too intense or violent happens and all things sexual are implied, but not graphic. Did I just make up a new genre?

JCLS_Ashland_Kristin Sep 28, 2018

Super fun and firefly-esque

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ipacpc
Apr 26, 2018

So I just finished The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet and man, that was a good book. I got so invested in the characters, and the whole world was cool and diverse and honestly like Star Trek but better on the “not every species is bipedal” front and “not every species has binary sexes” front too with often used neutral pronouns. And normalized lgbtq+ relationships woooo!

The style it was written made it kind of seem like there wasn’t exactly an overarching story, but rather a bunch of related but unique stories in each of the crew and how they all influence what happens on the Wayfarer and I really liked that.

Sometimes that overarching story style can get...stressful...I guess, but it can be tricky to write a story that doesn’t do that and also keeps your attention. It isn’t that the book had no story at all; the main “plot” one would define as the process of getting from point A to point B isn’t the important thing, the individual interactions and side excursions and crew talks are. And the author does a great job of describing the universe through these things, no encyclopaedia reading at all (besides the actual sort of wiki page info blurbs a couple characters pull up for reference, but they were well done too).

This was a super fun read without being too intense, but also not completely empty of drama. The drama was a good amount, like quality seasoning in food that complements the dish, not covering it up. People weren’t perfect, the situations they were in and came from weren’t all nice and easy. But most everything got worked through in reasonable ways with mutual understanding and communication. I say most because there is one non-consensual resolution that I guess gets justified, but definitely highlights how some people can be manipulative and think they’re doing the right thing even if they may not be, and the issue of consent in a tricky situation anyway. (that all sounds confusing but when you read it you’ll know exactly what thing I’m talking about there.)

If you’re looking for a fun, diverse sci-fi read, I highly recommend it.

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Jacqueline_M
Feb 18, 2018

This is a lovely and very well-written book. There's a lot of attention put into the small details of the story's universe, with things like fictional species descriptions, languages, documents, and tech ideas being very well thought out. The characters are interesting and diverse, and the fact that the story is told through many different characters' viewpoints adds to rather than diminishes the story. It's a heartwarming read with lots of humour, but there are also well-executed emotional plot points. All in all, any fans of detailed and witty sci-fi will enjoy this book.

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alexafter
Jan 24, 2018

What a feel-good, sweet, and fantastic read. The book has an approachable narrative with a diverse set of character who feel authentic and genuine. I love how it tackles issues of body, family, and identity so thoroughly and kindly without being preachy.

LPL_KateG Nov 06, 2017

I went into this expecting a fun sci fi space drama, and came out with SO MUCH MORE. Becky Chambers creates a fascinating universe full of interesting and diverse species, all attempting to live together peacefully. The Wayfarer, the ship we follow in this adventure, contains a hilarious cast of characters that you grow to know and love. Underneath the quirky characters is some interesting commentary on gender, race, and identity - things that throw into question our interactions on our own small, angry planet ;) I laughed out loud several times and cried in unexpected places. If your library has hoopla, check out the audio -- https://www.hoopladigital.com/title/11675182

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Pat_Kelly
Oct 07, 2017

Loved the concept; hated the execution; The characters are so stereotyped and one-dimensional that you know what's they're going to say and what's going to happened before it happens. It's a novel best read by turning off your brain and let it excite your endorphins by reaffirming a simple view of human/alien/cosmos nature.

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ipacpc
Apr 26, 2018

ipacpc thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

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shayshortt
Nov 10, 2018

Living in space was anything but quiet. Grounders never expected that. For anyone who had grown up planetside, it took some time to get used to the clicks and hums of a ship, the ever-present ambience that came with living inside a piece of machinery… Silence belonged to the vacuum outside.

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