Nightflyers/Nightflyers, by George RR Martin Rothdas book review RSS
2.5/4.0 Stars

This is a double review: The first part of the review is for the recent SyFy series, _NightFlyers_, and the second part of the review is of the collection of sci-fi stories by George RR Martin, which includes and is named after its longest story, _Nightflyers_.

So, the SyFy series. It's dummmmmmb. It shares some similarities with BlindSight, so just imagine that, except everyone on the ship is an idiot. The best thing to be said about the series is that they did a great job of picking actors with really interesting faces/presentation. Basically all of the main actors are really neat to look at, without being typically Hollywood handsome. But yeah, the air-mix in their ship needed more oxygen.

The actual short stories are considerably better. They're not hard sci-fi, and many of them have silly ideas like psionics, but despite that they're generally clever and intelligent stories. Like with his fantasy political stories, they rarely go for the obvious plotting and instead tend to fold back on expectations 2 or 3 or 4 times in interesting ways. The story _NightFlyers is best in this regard, and upsets expectations several times while still having a "warm" rather than a clever ending. Another way of putting it is that GRRM tends to make plotting and writing decisions that more stereotypically sci-fi author's would not. And all the stories are just competently written and enjoyable to move through. There are one or two stories where a sci-fi nerd will see the ending at the ~50% mark of the story, but despite that I still enjoyed finishing them out. Oh right, and what are the stories about. They're all small tales, of groups of a few or a few dozen people exploring, trading, mining, or scienceing. Kind of a sci-fi version of the _Ballad of Buster Scruggs_, they just try to be small and interesting and thematic stories in the genre. Oh, and one notable bit that I have to mention; in one of the stories there is a couple where the lady is a leading scientist and the guy is technician/poet. The guy is feeling depressed. And about half way through the book the lady scientist creates an entire ********, which, you know, is pretty impressive. And within a few minutes of that she's then doing emotional labor for the technician guy. :D Anyway, it's not really the point of the story, but I thought it was a funny bit-part. Actually the more I think about it the funnier the whole story is.