A Cartographic Analysis of the Dream Stateby Pat Murphy
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Traveling across the Martian polar cap, the second TransPolar Expedition is tracing the shape of the hidden lands beneath the ice and snow. Sita, the expedition�s cartographer, has a talent for interpreting the shades and squiggles that the computer produces from satellite photos and sonic recordings. She takes ambiguous data and makes a clear and precise map of lands no one has ever seen.
But Sita knows that maps are black-and-white portraits of a world that exists in shades of gray and, like cartographers before her, she knows that dragons lurk beyond the edges of every map. At night, in the darkness of her dreams, she believes in the yeti, the messengers from the secret lands, the dark-eyed dream beasts that haunt the crevasses and move as softly as the blowing snow.
The world is not all that it seems on the surface. Beneath the polar ice lies danger and discovery.
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Brought to you by OBS reviewer Angie The main character, Sita, has learned the skill of cartography from her formal education. But what makes her the best at her craft is her intuition, and what has been passed down to her through the generations of her family going back to her great grandfather who spent his life as a tour guide in the Himalayas… always searching for – but never finding – the Yeti. As part of a scientific team on Mars, Sita searches for her own Yeti in a very unlikely place and finally discovers that maybe her great-grandfather did see his Yeti afterall! This short story just didn’t grasp me. . It was a really interesting idea about what scientists might find on Mars, but in the end I felt no connection to any of the characters. I didn’t feel like I was there in the action. This review and more at openbooksociety dot com
This review is based on the copy provided to me by the publisher, Untreed Reads, on July 30, 2012, in exchange for my fair, honest, and impartial review, via Goodreads Group Making Connections. Review of A Cartographic Analysis of the Dream State by Pat Murphy 5 Stars A literate and lyrical exploration of the polar cap of the planet Mars, of the art and science of cartography (map-making) and of the human psyche and its capacity for imaginative dreaming and projection, “A Cartographic Analysis of the Dream State” simultaneously intrigues and soothes, leaving readers blinking at the end and wondering why it is over so soon. Sita, a cartographer of the Martian landscape, is the descendant of Tibetan refugees, raised in India by a university-educated father, but she holds close the stories and legends passed on of the great-grandfather, a mountain guide in Tibet, who led expeditions on searches for the yeti-the snow creature sometimes called “the abominable snowman.” Sita believes yeti are real, not so much as they are pictured, but as inhabitants of the dreaming state, nocturnal messengers; and she believes the polar regions of Mars are just as likely to sport yeti as are the Himalayas of Tibet, if she dreams them into being-and just maybe, she will be proved accurate in thinking so.