Another really good science fiction, with emphasis on science, from Greg Egan. I can’t stress enough how good it feels to read a fiction novel where the author does not use fiction as an excuse for being sloppy with the fact/science. If you like me are often frustrated when reading science fiction and want to stop and ask how things work in the world you reading about Egan is an author for you. He gives answers, interesting answers. I have to admit that I think the first part was a lot better than the second part, as I would found myself asking a lot questions about the new universe and how the different parts related to each other. I thought there would be a follow-up book, maybe it will be, but today there is not. So the new species are still there to be explored. I also think it was a little easy way out of the “eternal life” dilemma and the possibilities/challenges in a world where you can copy and start your own world/history whenever you like.
The first parts where the digital copies lives are discussed and presented are very inspiring and many of the challenges already exist relation to data we upload in today’s society. How fast can we update ourselves, what happen when we lose speed, is there a way out of the downward spiral. If Greg would spend some more time on the fundamental ethical issues it would probably be even better, but I’m not sure. What I do know is that I hope that he will keep on writing science fiction, where the science part is explored with the same curiosity and joy as in the two books I have read (the other one is Diaspora).