Urth of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe

Warning: Do not read this book before reading Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun series. This book is extremely difficult to parse and I can’t imagine what it would be like without the context of the first four books.

This is a fever dream of a science fiction novel. It has scenes of arresting strangeness and delirious dialogue. It leaps about in time like a scared rabbit and finally ends up in a such a mind-bending conclusion that I probably had to set the book down. Truly strange. I’m happy I read it, but I’m not sure I could recommend it.

I’m fortunate that I had a friend to chat about this book with, because it was a book I wanted to talk about after reading. The book started to make more sense once I’d had a little time to think about these five books all together. Ambitious in scope and a strong execution. Through his efforts, Wolfe makes a strong case for science fiction as a true literary genre.

6 thoughts on “Urth of the New Sun by Gene Wolfe”

    1. Hmm. The main character is an executioner but is strangely honorable. I think it might be a little too weird for you… if you’re looking for a book to read, I think there are others I’d recommend before these ones.

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