The Snow Queen (Snow Queen Series #1)

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Overview

Out of print since 1986, Joan Vinge's novel is back to tell the tale of the ageless, corrupt Snow Queen and her wish to control Tiamat forever. But her rule is quickly coming to an end unless she can find a young mystic named Moon--the Snow Queen's clone.
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Overview

Out of print since 1986, Joan Vinge's novel is back to tell the tale of the ageless, corrupt Snow Queen and her wish to control Tiamat forever. But her rule is quickly coming to an end unless she can find a young mystic named Moon--the Snow Queen's clone.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780446676649
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 2/28/2001
  • Series: Snow Queen Series , #1
  • Pages: 448
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.25 (d)

Reading Group Guide

1. The Snow Queen, in part, is an exploration of what love is and what people will do for the sake of love. For love of Sparks, Moon crosses galaxies and fights death in order to return to him. For love of Moon, BZ Gundhalinu risks his career and allows himself to be renounced by the members of his social caste. Herne follows Arienrhod to a suicide death. What do you think love is? How far would you let someone else go for love of you? How far would you go and how much would you give up for love?

2. The mers are revealed to be intelligent-an intelligence bioengineered by humans. Silky, an amphibian dillyp, is an alien who relates to them and communicates with them in a way that implies intelligence. Even Pollux, the android spending this time with Tor Starhiker, subtly shows signs of intelligence, not the least of which is the implication that he's in love with Tor. The author is making some broad statements about intelligence in her novel by bestowing it upon prominent characters who are not human. But what do you think intelligence is? How do you think it is displayed or understood?

3. This novel is set extremely far into the future, after humanity has spread to colonies on other planets. We have even found and developed relationships with alien life. Do you think these humans of the future have changed or grown much in terms of the way they deal with each other and the way their communities operate compared to what you know of humans now? Do you think this is a reasonable expectation for humanity's future? In what ways do you think human-kind will change?

4. While many have remarked on the beauty of the love story, many other readers have commented that they found the Moon and Sparks love story to be too incestuous. Though we find out that their genetic makeup is unrelated, Moon and Sparks still grew up believing they were first cousins and with a decidedly sibling-like relationship. Do you think it is natural for them to have fallen in love?

5. At the end of the novel, Moon has become the Summer Queen. One of the first goals she sets is to redefine the relationships between the Winters, the Summers, and their technology by encouraging the Summers, who are now in control, not to destroy the technology still on Tiamat. Do you think that Moon's idea will work? What do you think are the major social problems on Tiamat? Do you think that Moon will be a good Summer Queen? What do you think she can and should do to help her community?

6. If Arienrhod could continue taking the water of life potion, she could live forever. What would you do with your time if you could be immortal? Do you think you could keep yourself occupied and interested in life forever? Or do you think you'd get bored?

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 25, 2006

    Joan D. Vinge's Snow Queen is marvelous!

    Like another reviewer, I read this book years ago and have since sought it across three states' libraries to no avail. The plot is intricate, the characters well crafted, the worldbuilding excellent. The motives and consequences of the characters' actions echo those of our own world's environmental dilemma. This was an excellent read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 14, 2003

    Pleased

    I read this book when I was a teenager and frankly came looking for it because I hadn't been able to find a copy anywhere to reread, its been 15 years. A book that can stick with a person that long has some pretty decent impact. I wouldn't give it to a teen to read, but for adults, its some pretty ok leisure reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2000

    Dissapointed

    I was going through the Hugo list, and unfortunately this was one of the very few remaining titles I did not read yet. I have no idea how this book won Hugo award, they must've had a shortage on science fiction novels in 1980 or they might have just given it for great efforts in trying to rip-off Herbert's Dune and Ursula's Left Hand of Darkness. Usually, the sci-fi books lack good writing, but they have, especially Hugo award winners, good plot along with decent or better scientific input. This book does not have either. The characters are all one dimensional, and it actually feels like they are all the same person. This is arguably the worst science fiction novel I have read in years ( for certain, the worst Hugo award winning book I've read), and I've read tons of them. I actualy wish I could give it zero stars. If you plan on reading all Hugo winning books, save this one for the last.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 22, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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