Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Robert Sawyer

Loves Waterloo! The former One Book One Community author (in 2006 for Hominids) will be presenting his final novel in the WWW trilogy: Wonder on May 3rd. The free event takes place at the main branch of the Waterloo Public Library at 7pm. The trilogy is partly set in Waterloo and features Perimeter Institute prominently.

Wonder by Robert Sawyer ~ Reviewed by Tricia

I am a huge fan of Robert J.Sawyer's WWW Trilogy, which is set in Waterloo. I gobbled up the first two books in the series, Wake and Watch, and impatiently waited for the final one to be published this spring. Wonder was worth the wait. Sawyer has tied up several loose ends from the previous two books and done it in a way that is very clever. But let me back up a bit for those who have not read the first two. The books centre on Caitlin Decter, a once-blind teenager and math whiz who, with the aid of her Eye-pod computer, can not only see the world but can also see the world wide web. She discovers a "being" on the web who daily grows in the wisdom of the world. Webmind is Caitlin's christened name for this being. The people of the world welcome Webmind's presence as a boon to humanity but governments see it as a potentially dangerous interference and try to shut Webmind down. Wonder has Caitlin, her parents, and her friends trying to protect Webmind. The Chinese dissident that we met in the first book plays an integral part in saving Webmind as does Hobo, the chimpanzee-bonobo cross who is fluent in American Sign Language. I could not figure out how he would do it but in true Sawyer fashion he gives a very satistying solution to the ending. All three books were a delight to read and having read one a year for the past three years, I am now going to go back and read them again, one right after the other.

Robert J. Sawyer — called "the dean of Canadian science fiction" by The Ottawa Citizen and "just about the best science-fiction writer out there these days" by The Denver Rocky Mountain News — is one of only eight writers in history (and the only Canadian) to win all three of the science-fiction field's top honors for best novel of the year:

Rob is also the only writer in history to win the top SF awards in the United States, China, Japan, France, and Spain. In addition, he's won an Arthur Ellis Award from the Crime Writers of Canada as well as eleven Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Awards ("Auroras"). The ABC TV series FlashForward is based on his novel of the same name. He was born in Ottawa in 1960, and now lives just west of Toronto with his wife, poet Carolyn Clink.

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