A disturbing allegory, centered around a planet called Shikasta, which bears remarkable similarities to Earth Through time, a higher planet, Canopus, has documented the progress of Shikasta and tried to distract its inhabitants from the evil influence of the planet Shammat, but the Shikastans continue to hurl themselves toward annihilation.
Shikasta Re Colonized Planet A disturbing allegory centered around a planet called Shikasta which bears remarkable similarities to Earth Through time a higher planet Canopus has documented the progress of Shikasta and tried
My favorite quotes from this book both come from the introduction Shikasta has as its starting point, like many others of the genre, the Old Testament It is our habit to dismiss the Old Testament altogether because Jehovah, or Jahve, does not think or behave like a social worker I do think that there is something very wrong with an attitude that puts a serious novel on one shelf and, let s say, First and Last Men on another And, indeed, the overall effect is rather as though Olaf Stapledon had r [...]
i first read Shikasta fifteen years ago, and found it fantastic but very difficult Rereading it now i felt differently, it was both a lot easier but also a lot less impressive.A white woman who grew up in Zimbabwe back when it was Rhodesia become a nobel laureate in literature last year Amongst her reactions were something like what took you so long and my science fiction was my most important work Shikasta is the first book in Lessing s science fiction series, and it is very much a long, at tim [...]
No pude terminarlo Cuando iba por el tercio del libro que se me hizo eterno decid abandonarlo No quise seguir perdiendo el tiempo en una lectura que no va conmigo porque, siendo honesta, el libro no es malo, su planteamiento es bastante interesante Propone que la evoluci n de la vida en los planetas es controlada por tres milenarios imperios gal cticos rivales, quienes, a trav s de peque as intervenciones, en equilibrio con los diferentes eventos astrales, van dirigiendo el destino de las especi [...]
First read January 2005This book does three ambitious things.1 It takes the Old Testament of the Bible as inspiration for its mythical geo historical content, but instead of an angry bearded guy in charge, it has a super advanced utopian collectivist space travelling civilization colonising Earth and then struggling to maintain a shadow of hope and stability through thousands of literally star crossed years when the unfortunate planet is fed on and influenced by another, evil space travelling ci [...]
This book is so terrible that I added a new shelf refused to finish It has managed to supplant Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson as the worst book I ve had the misfortune to encounter and this includes Breaking Dawn The main problem with this book is that the writing is bad Doris Lessing won the Nobel Prize in literature for this series, so I had high hopes that at a minimum the prose would be good It s not Not even a little bit There have been precisely two moments in the 156 pages I read where [...]
This is absolutely the most janky book I have ever readom the 1st Dictionary of Nate janky JANE key adjective 1 thrown together at random patchwork 2 containing multiple elements, many of which contradict each other, and some that are mutually exclusive 3 top heavy lurching randomly in every direction at once 4 aspirations beyond achievement, and or aspirations that are impossible to achieve 5 distinctive in being completely psychotic 6 something designed over the course of eons by a lunatic chi [...]
I really wanted to like this but it was just too dull I really wanted to finish this but life is too short I got nearly two hundred pages in and just found myself dreading reading time because I knew I would have to pick this up.There s no plot for the reader to follow There are no characters for the reader to engage with There is no point to this narrative other than to show how stupid and corrupt humanity is Yeah, well, I already know that and this is not what I call entertainment.This is my f [...]
I enjoy Doris Lessing and I enjoy speculative fiction Somehow though, the combination had a tragic outcome An attempt to be clever that fails in an impenetrable epistolary mess If you want great epistolary spec fic, try The Prestige by Christopher Priest instead If you want great Lessing, read anything by her that s realist Ignore this novel Erase it if you can from you memory because Lessing was actually a super talented writer.
This work is kin to Oryx and Crake, and to a lesser extent Babel 17 conservative where it needs to be progressive, progressive where it needs to be informed, and all in all amounting to little than a done to death rehashing of various mainstream assumptions sprinkled with a few intriguing hints at veritable open fields The insensate jabbering on and on about the evils of history with nary a holistic breakdown into tiers of intra community issues and intersectional community action outside the j [...]
This is a very depressing book, an alternate take on human history, but I like being miserable so I dug it It is very well written and I don t feel it is slow moving at all Ms Lessing does a great job of making such a seemingly far fetched story believable.One thing Am I the only person who noticed the similarity to Beelzebub s Tales to His Grandson by G.I Gurdjieff The plot and even some of the writing style are so much alike Since Ms Lessing was a student of Sufism and Idries Shah I imagine sh [...]
I think I m just reading the wrong Doris because I know people love her but this was the boringest thing ever Just a dull froth of myth sci fi IT S EARTH THE PLANET IS EARTH OMG Hated it Forget why I started it Not finishing it.
I don t recommend this book Actually I don t think it should have ever seen print Don t get me wrong, I like slow, deep books with profound spiritual and political messages, especially if their science fiction I don t recommend this book for one reason it is inexcusable boring Let me explain I liked the three page introduction, where Lessing makes some important comments about science fiction The first half of the novel, a retelling of the Old Testament with SF elements, is kind of interesting a [...]
I read this book shortly after it was first published I ve since finished re reading it in its eBook form.It was hard But then, Lessing s Briefing for a Descent into Hell was hard, and worth the trouble Shikasta was then, and remains, a book of huge scope It runs across all of human history, adding in pre history and moving forward beyond today and into the future.As I read it I fancied I discovered echoes of The Four Gated City , the final book in Lessing s Children of Violence series I still f [...]
Rating 1 of 5 stars.I had to abandon this book I read about half of it and skimmed the other half, reading some pages here and there It just didn t work for me I was bored almost all of the time The writing style is way too wordy to me, the sentences too long where they don t necessarily have to be.I neither found a coherent story, nor any characters to care for, and parts of it is too much of a lecture to me This, combined with the biblical mystical esoteric undertones was enough to finally dro [...]
This was the latest in my Nobel Laureate readings, and I started this one I think back in May It took me this long to finish it, and if it weren t for the fact that it was part of my challenge this year I may not have forced myself through it I chose this because I thought it was interesting that a Nobel Laureate had written a sci fi novel, but I ve been really careful to NOT read reviews before I read one of these books, since I m trying to stay open minded But I really wish I had chosen a diff [...]
The first volume in Doris Lessing s praised sci fi quintet is a truly curious piece of literature I almost hesitate to call Shikasta a novel, due to its erratic structure Lessing s style here brings to mind Virginia Woolf, early Jack Vance and most of all William S Burroughs It s much like The Naked Lunch, even though its sci fi setting creates a bit congruence between the individual stories, manifesto s, apologies and philosophical as well as mythological deconstructions the whole of the book [...]
I ve read some critics s reviews of Shikasta which suggest that the book is different from most science fiction in that it has well developed characters and a deeply meaningful plot Of course, the critics still hated the fact that Doris Lessing demeaned herself by writing science fiction at all, so I guess no one can win I really wanted to love this book because it is so highly regarded and a friend of mine loved it, but those were in fact the only reasons I finished it The first hundred or so p [...]
This is the third Doris Lessing book that I ve read, and I feel now like I kind of have a handle on what her work is generally like She has recurring themes and settings I started reading this on a trip, and it was probably only because I was on a trip that I powered through it That is to say, I didn t have anything else to read When I got back, I put it down and didn t touch it for a month, when I finished it while on another trip.That s not to say that this is a terrible book It s just very sl [...]
Doris Lessing was first recommended to me by Karen Spilke, my next door neighbor in the senior year at Union Theological Seminary, who read part of her Golden Notebook aloud while I was driving her car up to visit her parent s summer house near Leeds, New York I had certainly heard of Lessing before and this reading put it back in my head to get down to reading her fiction.Then, Shikasta came out, a science fiction novel by the intended Great I bought it in hardcover and two of the subsequent no [...]
I am including this book in my favorites because of the unusual impact it had on me for about 25 years I have the 1981 paperback image that s shown I read most of the book sometime soon after that It s a rather old book, but, still, I ll use the spoiler alert since what I m going to say reveals something not that far from the end view spoiler What happened was that a significant way into the narrative a female character commits suicide Within the fantasy world Lessing has created, that meant the [...]
I went back and forth over whether I liked this book It was slow to get going, and once it got going was not necessarily heavy on plot as much as heavy on social commentary It tells the story of Earth, from a science fiction worthy beginning the planet being stewarded by a benevolent alien race , through the horrors of war in the 20th Century The book was written in 1979, so much of the last part of the book is speculation, and reasonable speculation based on what was happening in the world in t [...]
This novel is the first of Lessing s classic Canopus in Argos Archives series It differs from much modern science fiction in that is defies classification In part science fiction, in part psychological religious exploration, in part modern doomsday tale, in part pseudo historical documentation, the story follows the earthly life of Geoge Sherban, human incarnation of the Canopan being Johor George Johor visits a near future Earth where human society is on the brink of total breakdown Johor Georg [...]
I read this as part of book club But I don t recommend it The story is very slow, has a lot of repetition and obvious things, and the language is hard to read too The premise is somewhat interesting, but unfortunately the delivery is very poor It gets slightly better in the last third, but IMO reading this have not been such a great use of my time sorry if this sounds rude.
I know that a book is exceptional if I ve read it than once More than twice, and it has to be extraordinary Doris Lessing s Re Colonised Planet 5, Shikasta the first in a series known as Canopus in Argos is one of those Known for her extensive corpus of mainstream, left leaning fiction, Shikasta represents her first foray into science fiction and into mysticism Her die hard fans hated her new direction and hoped it wouldn t last She d already tried their patience with Briefing for a Descent int [...]
Shikasta is the first of five volumes in Lessing s Canopus in Argos cycle Lessing herself calls these books space fiction and explains that this genre i.e a type of science fiction in her eyes is unjustifiably maligned and provides the opportunity to think beyond boundaries.Essentially, the five books together represent nothing less than a holistic view of Earth and mankind The planet Shikasta is clearly recognizable as Earth Canopus is the home planet of a superior, almost transcendental civili [...]
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I borrowed this book from the library, I noted that while it had been borrowed on at least 10 different occasions going by the date stamps at the front no one had seemed to have gotten further than the first 100 pages or so judging by the creases in the spine I have to admit I found the first half of this book really annoying The first 100 pages or so were quite confusing, the different levels of the planet and the different forces, once it became clear that it was Earth it started to make sens [...]
Wow I am happily surprised how much I liked this book My 1st try at D Lessing was THE GOLDEN NOTEBOOK, and I could not get myself into it, gave it up pretty quickly When I was researching her work, I was curious to hear she had written a series of sci fi titles The sci in this sci fi is on the light side As is the case in much of the finest science fiction, distancing us from the known world can help an author frame a story the better to make points about that same world The basic point I heard [...]
I enjoyed this science fiction rather in the direction of Stanislaw Lem Lots of diplomacy and secret agents involved as well, hardly any sci fi typical technology A little dated now in some aspects, perhaps but the general concern about humanity is hardly ever out of time.Somehow the book also presents a kind of theodicee, in that the reason of Man s depravity is due to cosmic forces , beyond the control even of the supervisors The foreseeable resolve of the story into a kind of Happy End is a b [...]
I have been going through my books and reading those I recall fondly, but forget I read this book in my twenties, and loved it I have to admit that despite my fond memories, this was a tough read, it was work But I am glad i read it.It is speculative fiction written in the form of reports and diary entries, sort of first hand sources, about the decline of human civilization and the causes of it tampering by bad aliens, of course So you have to kind of get with that narrative style, and that take [...]