Monday, February 25, 2013
Roadside Picnic by Arkady and Boris Strugatsky
Roadside Picnic is a post-contact novel, the aliens have come and gone long before the events in this story. It is not a story of aliens, it is the story of humans trying to understand and adapt to the changes brought by alien contact. Roadside Picnic tells a tale of increasing strangeness. The alien bits are very alien and the way in which the humans react as humans rang true to me. We have an ability to accept the strangest things as normal and struggle to use them to our advantage. The main protagonist is a simple man, not heroic, and the whole novel feels like something Philip K. Dick could have written.
I bought this book on a whim, it was a good Kindle deal of the day. If I'd bought it at full price I'd still be very satisfied. This is not a book of action, this is a novel of ideas and humanity confronting that which we may never truly understand.