So I recently got recommended this book by someone on Goodreads who I am in a book group with. After looking at it I thought it looked pretty cool although was a bit sceptical at first. After the first couple of pages I was hooked, I was drawn into this story and it was so well written I would recommend it to anyone. In a week this book by Becky Chambers became the best book I had ever read in the whole of 2016 and nothing since has beaten it.

But.. this post is not a review as I feel those are nice but very overrated, I personally like to read a book but not be ruined by the storyline by reading a review. I prefer to read reviews at the end to see if people thought the same as me and gave similar opinions to a popular book. Instead I thought we could have a little debate about the questions at the back of the book as they might spark some interesting discussions. Chat as you wish share your opinions, if you want to you can criticise mine.

Is the long way, with its emphasis on friendship and family a comfort read?

I believe the long way to be a very enlightening book as it opens your eyes to the power of friendship and family. However I would not associate it as a comfort read, it did in no way comfort me but more opened my eyes and made me realise how small we are on this angry planet.

What makes a comfort read?

I think a comfort read must be down-to-earth, very appropriate to your situation in life and one you can just read and it makes you happy.

What are other favourite comfort reads and why?

I have never really had a comfort read as I read too many books to have what I would call comfort reads. This is because every book is different and I do not believe you can class books as being comfortable as every book can be comfortable dependent on the mood you are in and the environment you are reading in. But if I were to pick a comfort read it would be Harry Potter as it is a classic and can be read over and over again.

All the characters in long way have to make the best of being stuck together on a small ship over the course of a long voyage. By the end of the book, they’ve all come to know each other very well, and like and respect each other even when they disagree. How are our own friendships created and defined?

I personally don’t know much about friendships but I believe they are created by an equal understanding of each other from both sides of the friendship. It is created on the basis of that understanding and then is developed in to something more prominent and more important. Friendships take a lot to learn, understand and gain and you have to work for ages before you have someone you can call a friend. In this sense a friend is defined as someone you can go to for support during emotional times.

Why is friendship so incredibly valuable to us?

People need friends, they need that one person who understands them and can be there to support them. Having not had friends I know how much it can damage a person inside by not having someone to talk to, not having support or someone to go to. That is why friendship is so valuable to us as humans beings as we need the support and they need the support.

The long way to a small angry planet says that family is not necessarily the one you are born into (hatch family), but also the one you make (feather family). What defines family?

A family is defined as those around you who understand and know you better than your friends. They have seen the best and worst of you and are constantly there for you. They love you for who you are and that is all that is needed.

Why and how do we create our own families from our friends and loved ones?

I believe we create families from friends and loved ones as a family is not just blood related it’s those around you who you are closest to. We create these types of families by becoming closer to our friends and making them feel a part of your actual family. It is also done by treating them the way you treat your family and making them feel important.

We can spend as much time with our colleagues at workas with our friend and family outside of work? How do we balance our personal and professional lives?

For me, balancing work life and personal life can be difficult you just have to know how to do it right. You don’t want too much work nor too much personal time. So I like to work part-time and then spend the days I am not working or in college catching up on my life and enjoying it while I am living it.

Do our colleagues at work become a kind of family as well?

Yes, they do. This is because you spend so much time around them, they come to know you and that makes them a kind of family as well. You share many memories with your work colleagues and some of those times can never be forgotten.

Science fiction semms to be big business these days, with everything from books like Wool and The Martian being bestsellers to the new Star Wars films. Are we at the dawn of a new science fiction renaissance?

Yes, the universe and space is becoming more appealing to people in society as we look up and question our existence and life. Having seen the martian in film I loved it, why? Because it took what I knew and made me question it… that is what science fiction does. So yes we are at the dawn of a science fiction renaissance because people are starting to open their minds and look at the potential of the world around them.

Science fiction is often seen as the escapist literature, and certainly the characters in the long way are trying to escape things in their own lives? Does reading provide an escape from real life?

Yes, reading provides an escape from reality because I struggle communicating my thoughts sometimes and I know that books will never judge me for who I am. Whereas the world and society can discriminate against me for being different. Also in books I can pretend I am someone else and use my imagination to get away.

What else do we do to ‘get away’?

Personally, I like to walk when I want to get away. This is because it helps me clear my head and seeing the beauty around me can really put my problems into perspective. I also do cooking, drawing, colouring, listen to music and meditate. All of these help me to escape into my own private world.

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet is one of a number of recent novels that was discovered after being self-published. It had no advertising or marketing budget and came to the attention of traditional publishers merely by strong word of mouth recommendations. Is this indictive of how the landscape of publishing is changing?

I believe this is true of how publishing is changing as the world is changing so all the parts must change with it. I feel like we are going back to traditional word of mouth as that is often the best way to find new books. I never would have found this book if it weren’t for someone recommending it to me on Goodreads.

 

Definitely read this book and comment what you think… Lets get this discussion/debate going… 🙂

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