Thursday, June 16, 2011
The Trojan Carousel by Carl Frederick
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I seem to be making a habit of starting and finishing a book on the same long flight - this is another of those books, which proves it's a fairly quick read (since I also had time to eat, sleep, watch a film, etc.).
I love the concept of this book, and it's laid out in a style I haven't seen before, with extra sub-chapters which take the physics out of the main thrust of the novel. This works pretty well, but I'll be sorry if it means some readers miss out the more interesting paradoxes, since this seems to be a YA book with educational leanings.
I would have liked to see more physics, actually - for a large chunk of the book, the focus shifts to the rivalry between the schools, and it's not clear that the source of this rivalry is really anything to do with the ESAP teaching style and mindset. The extra physics sub-chapters dry up after chapter 16 (of 40) and it all gets a bit Lord Of The Flies for a while.
That said, it's nicely written, and the relationships between the students (as individuals and in groups) makes for compelling reading. And it does come back to conceptualising physics, at the end.