October Books 7) Up the Walls of the World, by James Tiptree

This is pretty good – a book with three plot lines, human researchers in a secret lab and two different alien viewpoints, of which the most memorable is the race of telepathic flying creatures inhabiting the upper reaches of a gas giant’s atmosphere. Part of it is the interaction between the three groups – when the narrative strands decisively intersect about half way through, it comes as a real structural shock to the reader. But Tiptree also uses the aliens for whom child-rearing is the highest-status occupation as a mirror to reflect and observe our own world, gender roles and power politics and all. She is of course best known for her short stories but I’d recommend this as well (to the three of you who haven’t already read it).

One thought on “October Books 7) Up the Walls of the World, by James Tiptree

  1. I’m so opposed against changing your name after marriage that I stubbornly refuse to use someone’s “new” name.
    Even better would be to start referring to the husband as Mr. Wife’s Name, but I’ve never dared doing it. I guess they would be horribly offended.

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