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The Book of Skulls | Paperback

Released on 16 December 1999

Author: Robert Silverberg | Format: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 (2 customer reviews) | Write a review

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A finely crafted account of four friends' quest for immortality

customer Reviews

 Average rating (2 reviews)

 Good but not sci-fi

| | See all ewanfmurray's reviews (5)

This is an interesting novel about four students on a journey of self-discovery. The main story; two of the characters hope to become immortal, while the remaining two will die. This concept is skilfully developed, often forcing the reader to decide which character "deserves" to live.

Personally, I constantly felt myself yo-yoing between which characters I hope should die. Brilliantly, i still could not decide right up until the final departure. Although there are multiple moral issues raised within the story, I felt the most impressionable dilemma raised was: does anyone deserve to die more so than another?

And yeh, that's not really sci-fi, is it?

 Sex and skulduggery

| | See all theWub's reviews (135)

I like Silverberg's work, and have read a number of his books, so it's somewhat disappointing that this one left me strangely unmoved. TBoS starts out well and shows great promise at the start. The writing style is deceptively straightforward, the prose clear and precise. The foundation for a fascinating mystery is well-laid. Unfortunately predictability soon sets in which gradually dilutes the story's effectiveness. As we get to know the four would-be immortals it becomes clear what the outcome will be. Although the backstories are for the most part interesting some sections feel almost superfluous and I can't help but think that this might have worked better as a pared-down novella. Despite this, however, its never dull, it's just that I was left feeling somewhat ambivalent rather than fulfilled.

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AuthorRobert Silverberg
PublisherOrion Publishing Co (GB)
FormatPaperback - 224 Pages
IllustrationsColour 32