Stories of Your Life and Others by Ted Chiang · Book review

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Short story anthology. I really loved Ted's other book of short stories so I decided to give this one a read. These contain his earlier works (from the 90s) as well as the short story that inspired the acclaimed sci-fi movie Arrival.

I think he's definitely improved in his storytelling over time, so some of his earlier work is boring in comparison (one was very mathy and about how 1+1=2, another where a guy became a super genius and then it was just explaining how he was outwitting the government, felt kind of dry).

The movie Arrival I enjoyed more than the actual short story as well, it had more of an emotional impact but definitely big kudos for inspiring such an awesome movie.

The last couple were the best. Like one where all of humankind technically already "exists" in an unborn state, because if you zoomed in on sperm close enough, you could see the sperm for its children, and so on (sounds stupid but I think it's partially based on what people used to think). Also one where angels literally walk the earth and people chase them around like storm seekers chase after tornados, often with dangerous consequences.

I'll give this one a 4 overall since it does have some good stories.

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Picnic at Hanging Rock


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