Rambling Thoughts from a Wandering Mind


Category: Book reviews

Utopia for Realists: a review

I recently finished reading Rutger Bregman’s book Utopia for Realists. It was quite good and a surprisingly compelling read, given that it’s full of charts and graphs.

Rather than attempting to write my own review, I’ll just send you to a review Neil Howard wrote for openDemocracy. It points out the highlights and covers many of my own criticisms of the book, and does so much succinctly than I’m able to.

Read the review. If it sounds interesting, read the book.

Logan’s Run, the novel

Did you know that the cult classic movie, Logan’s Run, was loosely based on a novel of the same name? I had no idea, until the book came up in the search results when I was trying to find the movie in my local library’s collection.

The book is quite different from the movie and, in many ways, a lot sillier. It doesn’t really rise above a pulp sci-fi adventure story, but it’s a very entertaining read. It’s quick and punchy, and at only 167 pages it’s a pretty quick read even for a slow reader like me.

Where the movie has a pretty straightforward plot, the book is wild. It’s still a linear plot, but it goes all over the place with a bunch of bizarre characters and subplots along the way. It’s got murderous children, a mentally unstable cyborg ice sculptor, and a giant maze of pneumatic tubes that rapidly take cars to all known parts of the inhabited world, including a mostly abandoned underwater city.

It’s hardly a masterpiece, but it’s very entertaining. If you like weird, sci-fi adventures, I recommend it.

One of the co-authors wrote a couple of sequels, likely to capitalize on the success of the film. Of the two sequels, the first sounds intriguing (though generally not as well-reviewed as the original) and the latter sounds like a an excuse to re-write the first novel.