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Ursula Le Guin

The dispossessed

Annares is the moon of Urras. It's habitable, but a struggle to live there, and is the home of a people devoted to freedom from state control. However, Shevek, a physicist on Annares, finds his freedom to create and discuss a new theory of time and space isn't what it should be. Thus he goes to Urras, where the scientists show a greater appreciation of his ideas, and in doing so hopes to start to heal a long-standing hatred between the two worlds. But will his actions really make any difference? The Dispossesed by Usrula le Guin is an impressive study of different kinds of freedom, but I did have some reservations concerning its plot - or lack of it.

The book alternates between Shevek's life before his journey to Urras and that after. This is a good way to bring in lots of background without keeping the reader waiting for something to happen. However, in this book Shevek's time on Urras doesn't have much of a plot either. It's only towards the end that one seems to develop, and then the book seems to end much to soon. So it's a good book for its thought provoking ideas - if we make a journey, can we ever really return to the place we left? But it's not for those who are looking for a bit more excitement.