Rainbow Mars (collection)

Larry Niven
Rainbow Mars (collection) Cover

Rainbow Mars (collection)


Much as I am a hard-core fan of LN, I did NOT enjoy this "novel". I already knew everything I needed to know about Svetz from The Flight of the Horse collection. I forced my way through, though, because you can't read ALL of LN without reading all of LN!

Larry Niven reasoned out that there was and could be no such thing as time travel - becasue it is scientifically impossible and implausible. So if so-one has a "time machine", it is not a scientific invention - it is a fantasy device. If your boss send you back in time to get a horse (as happens in The flight of the Horse, you will of course come back with a unicorn.

The impossibility of time travel and time machines has, of course, not stopped inummerable authors from writing novels about it, even some great novels. BUT they are only science fiction because we avert our eyes, spin in a circle, throw salt over our sinister shoulder, and pretend that science can encompass our pretend science.

Why do we pretend that time travel is science fiction? And telpathy and asinine psychic powers. etc.? I don't know - The Time Traveller's Wife is one of my top favourites, how would I know? It is reassuring, though, that there are a few hard SF authors out there who avoid this "easy-out" in their plots.

My rating system starts with a rating of one star for a story/novel that I ranked "C -". Ratings move up 1/2 star with each step, up to 5 stars (equivalent to a ranking of A+). I reserve 1/2 star for works rated D and lower.