Top positive review
A riveting story about vastly different governments, sexuality and family
Reviewed in the United States on August 5, 2016
I don't usually like stories with flashbacks (thankfully, the flashbacks are chronological), but this is one where the technique really pays off. Two planets rotate around each other, one has a rich biosphere and lacks many resources while the other is barely able to produce enough food for a rather small population, but is rich in resources the other planet needs. The former planet has a strict authoritarian government and unlimited luxuries for the rich and rather austere lives for the poor who have no freedom at all. This contrasts with the austere second planet where everyone is at least theoretically free in a human/computer organized anarchy, but some people manage to have more power than others despite a system that should not favour anyone over another (everyone usually works together for the common good).
This book is a must read. It also includes an english professor's reading guide at 94% that includes a brief synopsis of the social situation at the time the novel was written to help explain why the author wrote the book the way she did and then poses thought provoking questions about each chapter. I suggest that you read this guide first and then read each chapter and try to answer the questions in the reading guide and repeat until you have completed the novel. Reading the book in this way will be a far more moving and enjoyable experience.