Lockstep: Karl Schroeder's first YA novel is a triumph of weird science, deep politics, and ultimate adventure


For some reason I read that as Karl Rove. Which would be weird.

Is YA new code for brain-candy? Seems like everyone’s writing YA these days and all it really means is that there’s less complex language, if not characters and plot. And romance without the sex. Mostly.


As I said in my SF Signal review [http://t.co/vY6tAyaTcK ] m Karl could write novels set in this universe for the rest of his life, if he wanted to, given its scope.

Purchased! I was looking for a good YA sci-fi to read next - I find they are often written in a less heavy manner then ‘adult’ sci-fi which makes for a more enjoyable, and casual, read on my way to work :slight_smile:

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Interesting that Lockstep should be marketed as YA, given that it didn’t feel to me any different from, say, Ventus or Lady of Mazes or Sun of Suns, all of which feature young protagonists and a bildungsroman vibe. My review copy (plug: read the review in the March Locus) didn’t have the cover art, which I see has the iconography of “YA” (two pretty contemporary-looking kids)–but the contents just signalled “Karl Schroeder.”

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I find the knee-jerk criticism of Ender’s Game a little strange here, since the concept of Lockstep also has a lot in common with the Worthing Saga, also by Orson Scott Card: using suspended animation to travel among the stars without superluminal travel, spending most of one’s time in suspended animation while civilization goes on without you, and awaking from eons of suspended animation to find that you’ve become a god.

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Just came to say, well done to the publisher and illustrator and designers for making a cover to a sci fi novel that looks really great. Some well placed type! A good sense of composition! Well crafted illustration! Winner!

I read this in Azimov’s and really enjoyed it!

As amazing as it seems, teens and other YA readers are, in fact, human, and appreciate the same kinds of stories as the rest of us.

What I problem I see with current ‘adult-scifi’ (and other contemporary genres) is that everyone is trying to make the next Game of Thrones [IN SPACE!] so from the out start there must be a legion of main characters, an over complicated setting that’s sliding into shit [that means realism], sex for exploitation’s sake, and no happiness or good morals. Because making something arduous to read means that it’s smart, right?

Karl Schroeder’s become one of my favorite authors over the past half-dozen years, although I’m yet to be sold on the premise (everybody in a society agreeing to suspend themselves for long periods of time on a regular basis seems a little bit of a stretch), but I will be picking it up eventually (although I’ll probably wait for paperback).

But seriously, he’s an awesome writer (his Lady of Mazes is probably one of my favorite books ever and I believe is criminally underread in the SF community). One of the things I like about him is that he tends to resist the easy villains, in many of his books the conflict is driven by sympathetic people/sides who happen to have incompatible agendas (and I often go back and forth who I agree with), and even when there are “bad guys” you can usually understand why they do what they do and why they’re not the bad guy in their own heads.

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