Read Tanrı Olmak Zor İş by Arkady Strugatsky Boris Strugatsky Hazal Yalın Hari Kunzru Emre Aygün Online


Arkadi ve Boris Strugatski, entelektüel açıdan kışkırtıcı, inanılmaz eğlenceli, cesur ve eleştirel kitaplarıyla “Sovyetler döneminin en büyük bilimkurgu yazarları” sıfatını hak eden yegâne ikili. Tanrı Olmak Zor İş ise insanlığın karanlık geçmişinin kalbine yapılmış en cesur yolculuklardan biri.İnsanlık, Dünya’nın tıpatıp aynısı olan, üzerindeki insanların karanlık çağdanArkadi ve Boris Strugatski, entelektüel açıdan kışkırtıcı, inanılmaz eğlenceli, cesur ve eleştirel kitaplarıyla “Sovyetler döneminin en büyük bilimkurgu yazarları” sıfatını hak eden yegâne ikili. Tanrı Olmak Zor İş ise insanlığın karanlık geçmişinin kalbine yapılmış en cesur yolculuklardan biri.İnsanlık, Dünya’nın tıpatıp aynısı olan, üzerindeki insanların karanlık çağdan öteye gidemediği bir gezegene gözlemciler göndermiştir. Bu gezegenin gidişatına müdahale etmelerine hiçbir şekilde izin verilmeyen bu gözlemcilerin asıl amacı insanlığın karanlık çağını her ayrıntısıyla kayıt altına almaktır.Büyük bir değişimin kıyısında olan Arkanar Krallığı’nda halk baskı altında yaşamakta, yenilikler beşiğinde boğulmakta, okuma yazma bilenler linç edilmektedir. Bu gezegene gönderilmiş gözlemcilerden biri olan Anton da Don Rumata ismiyle bir asilzade hayatı yaşarken, bir yandan da dönemin aydınlarını kurtarmaya çalışır....

Title : Tanrı Olmak Zor İş
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9786053756873
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 230 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Tanrı Olmak Zor İş Reviews

  • Hadrian
    2019-03-01 11:47

    “And what if you could change the divine decrees?”“Only a higher power is capable of this.”“But still, imagine that you’re God …”Budach laughed. “If I could imagine myself as God, I’d become him!”“Well, what if you had the chance to advise God?”The premise of this story seems like a grand adventure. Scientists and observers from a future paradise earth infiltrate and study other earth-like planets. Their main principle resembles Star Trek's 'prime directive' of non-interference. But this is not another peaceful little kingdom they study. The world itself is breaking down. Warlords, such as the vicious Don Reba, hunt down and destroy any person who can read or write. That world is a lump of filth, a place in rapid and horrific decline. Language itself is breaking down, collapsing into grunts and single phrases. And for the scientists who are observing this, for our fake Don Murata, it is hard to be a god, to stand by and watch as people destroy themselves. He can try and save a few literates and talk to them, but they slip through his grasp and fade into oblivion. In the afterword, the author first says this was planned a historical adventure story, like 'The Three Musketeers'. But the events of the Khrushchev thaw and Stalin's Great Terror loom large as an influence. Don Reba was originally named Don Rebia, a crude anagram of Beria. He was Stalin's chief of police, mass murder, and pedophilic rapist.But even with the political roots of this story, it asks more discomforting questions about the 'course' of history, the development of human societies, and can be applied to many times and many places. It denies us the resolution of an easy answer, just in the sense that history itself denies us any conclusive ending.

  • Richard Derus
    2019-03-24 13:54

    Rating: 4* of fiveThe Publisher Says: Don Rumata has been sent from Earth to the medieval kingdom of Arkanar with instructions to observe and to save what he can. Masquerading as an arrogant nobleman, a dueler, and a brawler, he is never defeated, but yet he can never kill. With his doubt and compassion, and his deep love for a local girl named Kira, Rumata wants to save the kingdom from the machinations of Don Reba, the first minister to the king. But given his orders, what role can he play? This long overdue translation will reintroduce one of the most profound Soviet-era novels to an eager audience.My Review: It's hard to review a world-famous classic. I have to think the translation is faithful because it captures a voice that lesser translators more often than not miss entirely. The standard adventure plot is fun. In common with a lot of SF written in that era, we don't get a lot of well-drawn characters; in this case only one, Don Rumata himself.What makes this a classic, then? It would raise few eyebrows today, if it was a new publication. That it is 52 years old makes all the difference; that it is an excellent example of its niche solidifies the place History has given it.But anyone not already caught in the tentacles of the SF Cthulhu monster might want to pass by without slowing down too much.

  • Becky
    2019-03-22 13:40

    This is one of the best books ever! It's such a unique & nuanced look at the past human and social condition, yet so relevant to the present time for both. It tells the story of a human society on another planet that is circa the middle ages in development. A group of earthlings are monitoring this society covertly and it is through the eyes of one of the earth born humans that resides amongst this society that we get a good look into the mirror of the past and into the magnifying glass of the present. What's best is that it has a fantastical feel, yet there is nothing unreal about it - other than the existence of another planet with a human society ;)The main theme of this book and one aptly identified in the title Hard to Be a God is how the advanced human beings from earth should react to the harsh human conditions that exist within the more primitive race of humans on the planet. Should they intercept with the knowledge and technology they have in order to better their condition? A friend pointed out to me that to truly appreciate the relevance of this story to actual human events, one only has to note the environment in which the authors lived which happened to be communist Russia. For example, parallels can be drawn between the main theme of the story and the Russian Revolution of 1917. At the time of this revolution, Russian people were inert slaves and did not participate in the revolution. The Revolution was performed by a very small group of communist revolutionists comprised of intelligentsia and ethnically oppressed minorities such as Jews, Latvians, and Poles which can lead one to surmise that the Russian Revolution of 1917 was indeed forced on the Russian people by "people from another planet”! So now consider, was interference really the right thing to do? Forced advancement of the social system within Russia (and other places) didn't necessarily succeed, though the temptation of interfering was strong and seemed right. The authors do a good job in accurately portraying this truth.I highly recommend this book for those who love fantasy, but maybe want to read something a little more scholastic. And I highly recommend it for those in academia who don't delve too much into fantasy, but would like something creative, yet compatible with their sensibilities. The authors throw in a bit of scientific vocabulary here in there; sound philosophical observations; and seem to have a genuine ease in storytelling. Highly recommended!

  • Vit Babenco
    2019-02-26 09:01

    Different planet, different epoch, different consciousness, different psychology – how will observers or spies or watchmen from the future Earth succeed in their mission of controlling the alien history even if it resembles so much our own medieval period of dark ages.“In the depths of the forest, a mile away from the road, beneath an enormous tree that had dried up of old age, stood a lopsided hut made out of enormous logs, surrounded by a blackened picket fence. It had been here since the beginning of time, its door was always shut, and there were crooked idols carved from whole tree trunks around its rotting porch. This hut was the most dangerous place in the Hiccup Forest. It was said that this was the very place to which the ancient Pekh would come every twelve years to deliver his offspring, after which he would immediately crawl beneath the hut and expire, so the hut’s entire cellar was filled with black poison. And when the poison seeped out—that’s when the end would come. It was said that on stormy nights, the idols dug themselves out of the ground, came out onto the road, and signaled to passersby. And it was also said that sometimes the windows shone with unnatural light, sounds resounded through the forest, and a column of smoke reached up from the chimney to the sky.Not long ago, Irma Kukish, a sober simpleton from the farmstead of Plenitude (in common parlance, Stinkfield) foolishly wandered by the hut at night and peered into the windows. He came home completely incoherent, and after he recovered a little, said that the hut was full of bright light and that a man with his feet on the bench sat behind a crude table and guzzled from a barrel held in one hand. The man’s face hung all the way down to his waist and was spotted all over. It was obvious that this was the Holy Míca himself, before his conversion to the faith, a polygamist, drunkard, and blasphemer. To look at him was to be afraid. A sickly sweet smell wafted out the window, and shadows moved across the trees. People gathered from all over to hear the idiot’s story. And it all ended when the storm troopers came, bent his elbows to his shoulder blades, and hustled him off to the city of Arkanar. But people still talked about the hut, and it was now called nothing but the Drunken Lair.”This fine excerpt excellently conveys the picturesque atmosphere of the novel. And of course this exotic place is a secret base of the earthlings.“The essence of man,” Budach said, chewing slowly, “lies in his astonishing ability to get used to anything. There’s nothing in nature that man could not learn to live with. Neither horse nor dog nor mouse has this property. Probably God, as he was creating man, guessed the torments he was condemning him to and gave him an enormous reserve of strength and patience. It is difficult to say whether this is good or bad. If man didn’t have such patience and endurance, all good people would have long since perished, and only the wicked and soulless would be left in this world. On the other hand, the habit of enduring and adapting turns people into dumb beasts, who differ from the animals in nothing except anatomy, and who only exceed them in helplessness. And each new day gives rise to a new horror of evil and violence.”Can historical processes be changed from the outside? Do the outsiders have the moral rights to change them?These aren’t rhetorical questions – these questions are actual here and now, in our own home world.

  • Nilüfer
    2019-03-22 12:51

    "Bütün belalar, kardeşler, bütün belalar şu okumuşlardan çıkıyor! Önce gelmiş parayla saadet olmaz, diyorlar, sonra köylü dediğin de insan evladıdır; sonra küfre varan maniler, peşinden ayaklanma... Hepsini asacaksın bunların, kardeş! Mesela ben olsam ne mi yapardım? Evvela sorardım: Okuman yazman var mı? Öyleyse doğru darağacına!"

  • Althea Ann
    2019-03-05 11:46

    Fascinating and important work. Published in 1964, I feel that it may have been an influence on, or at least a precursor to, many of my favorite books. I saw thematic similarities with some of Iain Banks’ Culture novels, especially Inversions, and Kage Baker’s Company series.The story deals with a ‘deep’ agent from an advanced civilization, who is supposed to observe and record the feudal society he’s been planted in, without interfering. However, the society he’s working in is on the verge of a shift from feudalism to fascism. Purges of intellectuals are increasing, and the agent finds it harder and harder to maintain any kind of objectivity. Meanwhile, he also battles the tendency to lose sight of his identity; he finds himself becoming more and more like the callous, boorish aristocrat he is impersonating. But he also finds himself truly caring for his native lover…There’s a lot going on in the relatively brief book. Anton, while maintaining his cover identity as Don Rumata, tries to balance his ethics against the demands of his job. His attempts to rescue the scientists and artists that he sees as the lights of hope in a dark and ignorant world make for an exciting story. But it’s also very philosophical, exploring the ramifications of a non-interference policy, the tendency toward abuse of power, and the nature of humanity.It’s very interesting to see science-fiction themes which I’ve seen explored from American and European perspectives many times from the point of view of Russian authors. Here, the advanced, peaceful and free society which the researchers are from is, of course, one where the ideals of communism have come to full fruition. I wished I could see more of that world – and may have to seek out some of the Strugatsky brothers’ other books to explore further. However, their vision is not all starry-eyed: the world of Arkanar and its Inquisitorial brutalities are very clearly parallel to abuses and purges from Russia’s history.Highly recommended – both as a great reading experience, and for anyone interested in the various facets of science fiction as a genre.Copy provided by NetGalley - thanks for bringing this book to my attention! As always, my opinion is purely my own.

  • Milo
    2019-02-26 15:00

    I have been delaying this review for a while now. I wanted to do the Strugatsky's justice but I just haven't been able to come up with anything intelligent or witty to relate to you in honor of their work. All I can say is read the book, you won't regret it.The StoryIt starts off very symbolically with some kids playing on a one way street; this mirrors evolution and history. All these things flow in one direction and travel along with their own unalterable velocities. Now lets suppose that evolution follows a linear course. Every planet capable of housing life develops similar lifeforms as our Earth with the primates ultimately adapting into primitive versions of the human race. We superior humans, who have attained the pinnacle of perfection, ship some of our own off to these developing planets to observe and indirectly help speed along the progress of the various indigenous peoples.And so the story begins. Anton is covertly trying to further the medieval age humans with his fellow comrades. They quickly discover that evolution does not come as easily to a people who aren't ready for it. If fact the social evolution of these alien civilizations worked in the opposite direction than they had initially thought. The ignorance and prejudices of the day work against them while the effects of culture shock begin mounting. After several years spent in vain Anton begins seeing the people as little more than savages fit for being abandoned or destroyed. His mental condition gently starts to deteriorate as he spends time in a vastly different environment than he is accustomed to. He yearns for his home planet but must fulfill his responsibility to the people. It truly is hard to be a god, he realizes. The WritingOne word. Seamless. The Strugatsky combo of Boris and Arkady is so dynamic and well-meshed that I had no idea when I made the transition from one writers work to then next. I have read many works written by dual authors and it has always been relatively simple to spot the parts where one author passed the pen to the other. Not so with Boris and Arkady! (Maybe it's solely a brother/sister thing) Another thing that I always find pleasing is the structure of the sentences in stories originally written in Russian. There was something distinct added to the story when long flowing sentences were used to depict the thoughts of the author. I find this to generally be the sign of talented Russians writers.Final Summation: I promise you'll like this book. If you don't it's short so you won't hate me too much.

  • Dangermousie
    2019-02-24 09:44

    It's intelligent, and philosophical, and it makes you angry, and it makes you think, and it makes you hope. It involves a planet which is in a Medieval stage of development, so Earth sends in "on the ground" observers for study purposes, who are trained to blend in. The thing is, what to a researcher on Earth "interesting development, 200 people got killed in a routine feudal coup," to the person on the ground are his friends dying. Yet, they cannot interfere, shortcircuit the curse of history and give (e.g.) the more enlightened guys guns, as that would result in more death, more innocent people (only different ones) dying. But does standing back make you less human? When you start to see people not as individuals but as masses, there's a problem. The main character, Anton, is probably one of my favorite fictional characters ever, and the end? Wow. You see him fall apart more and more during the book, as he witnesses more and more events he knows he should not interfere in, but is morally repulsed to let proceed. He is a good man, whose humanity is outraged more and more daily, and he is teetering on the edge of losing it the whole book, (view spoiler)[and when he finally is pushed over the edge? It is wrong, and he shouldn't have done it, there is no question of that. (hide spoiler)] But there is also no question that if he did not act, he would forfeit a claim to his own humanity, because it would be inhuman not to have a snapping point. And of course his actions do not make it better. The book really does make a point that people as people, matter. For example, Kira is not even a blip in a history book, she didn't matter in the grand scheme of things. But of course, she was the world to Anton, (view spoiler)[and her loss is not better for him because history does not care one way or another. (hide spoiler)] And every person who died in any of these events historians record, routine palace coups, book burnings, little wars, really mattered to somebody. But, and that's why I love it, interference does not make it better for others. These people are not ready for modernity. Interference allows you to save your own humanity, but no more. I don't know how something so hopeless comes across as so hopeful, but it does.

  • Nikki
    2019-03-01 12:58

    I was fascinated by the sound of this when I came across it in the library, because I really liked Roadside Picnic, and because the foreword mentions parallels with Star Trek and Iain M. Banks’ Culture novels. However, I found this… pretty much unreadable. There’s a sort of opaqueness I associate with reading Russian novels in translations, but in spades. Supposedly, this translation is much more readable than the old one, which was done via German, but… if that’s the case, I hate to think what the old one was like.It’s really disappointing, honestly, because the foreword makes it sound interesting, it’s blurbed by Ursula Le Guin, and the parallels mentioned are there. But I couldn’t even hold onto the meaning of the action — why did this character say that, what was the significance of that…I might try again at some other time, maybe with the other translation, or with some future translation. The setting itself — being fairly traditional-fantasy-esque — doesn’t bother me, and I did, as I said, enjoy Roadside Picnic. Hm.Originally posted here.

  • Maria
    2019-03-18 13:40

    Ooof... Puține sunt cărțile care mă învăluie în disperare, dezamăgire, absurditate și... greață. Greață față de mizeria care colcăie în oameni, față de cruzimea, egoismul, indiferența și bestialitatea macabră care le întunecă sufletul.Într-un viitor nedefinit, Anton, specialist al Institutului de Istorie Experimentală de pe Pământ, călătorește spre o altă planetă cu misiunea de a-i observa pe locuitorii acesteia, fără a interveni în evoluția generală a societății. In această lume cenușie și fără de speranță, Anton devine Don Rumata, un nobil feudal a cărui avere îi permite să se strecoare în cele mai înalte cercuri ale guvernării. Captiv într-o societate mizerabilă în care cărturarii, doctorii, poeții și artiștii sunt vânați, torturați și sfârtecați cu sălbăticie de către "Cenușii", garda de securitate a regelui,(Nu avem nevoie de deștepți. Avem nevoie doar de oameni devotați.), Don Rumata este sfâșiat în permanență între dorința de a-i salva pe cei din jur, de a-i elibera de suferința și groaza care bântuie ținutul și datoria sa, ordinele pe care trebuie să le respecte. Avem nervi minunați: știm să nu întoarcem capul când cineva este bătut măr sau executat. Avem o incredibilă stăpânire de sine: suntem capabili să rezistăm la efuziunile unor cretini iremediabili. Am uitat și de silă, suntem mulțumiți de vasele care de obicei sunt date câinilor să fie linse, apoi, pentru ca acestea să arate totuși frumos, le ștergem cu poalele hainelor jegoase. Am devenit niște monumente de impersonalitate, nici măcar în somn nu mai rostim limbile Pământului.In mijlocul acestei lumi ce amenință să-i strivească sufletul pentru totdeauna, Anton are cunoștințele și puterea care ar putea schimba soarta a mii de oameni. Măcinat de îndoieli, cuprins de deznădejde, sufocat de mediocritatea care îl înconjoară, Don Rumata se străduiește să salveze câte o fărâmă din umanitatea rătăcită a Arkanarului, pune la cale eliberarea unui doctor, ușurează evadarea unor învățați, finanțează actele de rebeliune sau negociază răscumpărarea unor cărturari. Dar fiecare act de bunătate se pierde în vâltoarea Râului, în mizeria și indiferența de fiecare zi... Unde e scăparea?...toţi, aproape fără excepţie, nu erau încă oameni în sensul contemporan al cuvântului, nu erau decât nişte lingouri, nişte piese brute din care numai secolele sângeroase ale istoriei vor şlefui cândva un om mândru, cu adevărat liber. Erau pasivi, lacomi, inimaginabil de egoişti. Din punct de vedere psihologic erau aproape cu toţii nişte sclavi – sclavi ai credinţei, sclavi ai semenilor lor, sclavi ai patimilor şi ai cupidității. Şi dacă printr-un capriciu al sorţii careva dintre ei se năştea sau ajungea stăpân, nu știa cum să profite de libertatea lui. Se grăbea iarăşi să devină un prizonier – rob al bogăției, al exagerărilor nenaturale, al prietenilor depravați, rob al robilor săi. Lăsând deoparte macabrul Universului creat, consistența narativă și abilitatea fraților Strugatski de a-și amesteca cititorii în gândurile personajului este uluitoare, pagină după pagină simți suferința, iminența dezastrului, claustrofobia și lipsa de speranță. Cu toate că elementele de science fiction se pierd destul de ușor în contextul general al romanului, secvențele introspective și armonia stilului compensează destul de ușor aceste aspecte, cel puțin pentru mine; în cele din urmă, totul depinde de așteptările cititorului.A trecut ceva timp de când nu m-a mai apăsat o carte atât de îngrozitor.

  • Dato Kvaratskhelia
    2019-03-19 11:48

    "ხანდახან მეჩვენება, რომ არავის არაფერი შეგვიძლია, მეამბოხეთა მარადიული მეთაური ვარ და ვიცი, რომ მთელი ჩემი ძალა არაჩვეულებრივი ამტანობაა. მაგრამ ეს ძალა ჩემს უძლურებას ვერაფერს შველის. ჩემი გამარჯვებები რაღაც ჯადოსნური ძალის წყალობით დამარცხებებად იქცევა ხოლმე. თანამებრძოლები მტრები ხდებიან, ყველაზე მამაცები გარბიან, ყველაზე ერთგულები მღალატობენ ან გაქცევით შველიან თავს. და არაფერი გამაჩნია შიშველი ხელების გარდა, შიშველი ხელებით კი ვერ მისწვდები ციხესიმაგრის კედლების მიღმა წამომსხდარ მოოქრულ კერპებს.." "ჩვენს საქმეში ნახევრად მეგობრობა შეუძლებელია, ნახევრად მეგობარი ყოველთვის ნახევრად მტერია."

  • David
    2019-02-21 10:44

    I've waited a long time to read this book, due to its rarity and price, but it was thankfully recently republished and I had to get my hands on it, being such a fan of Soviet science-fiction and the Strugatsky brothers in particular (Roadside Picnic... So good).This novel imagines that Earth achieved perfect Communism, and the Moscow Historical Society sends agents out to other worlds to guide the development of the human condition with a subtle invisible hand. The protagonist, Don Rumata, is one such cosmonaut/agent, and discovers it is indeed 'Hard to be a God,' watching in dismay as the intelligentsia and dissident ideas are destroyed by the forces of Don Reba (originally Don Rebia, an all too obvious anagram of the infamous Beria of the USSR). I love that the Strugatsky brothers were able to publish such brilliant and incisive literature in a repressive communist society under the guise of criticizing feudalism's treatment of freedom of speech, the fate of freethinkers, innovators, and the intelligentsia.The book also provides room for philosophical thought, as Don Rumata talks with a persecuted doctor/thinker about what he would ask God to do about the problem of evil and the human condition, with Rumata playing the role of God explaining why each well-intentioned intervention would ultimately fail. Another philosophical conversation follows Don Rumata's conversation with 'Arata the Beautiful,' a man fighting for freedom from tyranny and oppression who asks Rumata to provide him with the proverbial 'fire from heaven' with which to strike down all the oppressors. Once again, Rumata realizes his limitations as a God, and though Arata was a man before his time, he could not oblige his request; causing Arata to tell Rumata that it would be better if he and his comrades had never come at all.A wonderful novel about oppression, the human condition, evil, satire, and imagination.

  • Evgeny
    2019-03-04 14:05

    This is one of the best Soviet science fiction books. Imagine you are sent to undeveloped planet where people still live during what looks like Earth's middle ages as a mere observer (think Prime Directive from Star Trek). You are so good at being undercover that you make real friends as well as real enemies. What happens if your enemies start killing your friends and drag the society back to dark ages in the process? You have god-like powers to stop bad guys, would you use them?The book combines fast-paced action with deep philosophical questions successfully, something very few books manage to pull off. Highly recommended.

  • Tsengoz
    2019-03-08 08:00

    Pushkin'den Gogol'e, Dostoyevski'den Tolstoy'a kadar Rus edebiyatının hangi büyük yazarını okursanız okuyun, elinizdeki kitabın kapağını kapattığınızda midenize bir yumruk yemiş gibi oluyorsunuz. İlginç roman kahramanları, zihninizde derin izler bırakan diyaloglar, beklenmedik olaylar, felsefi sorgulamalar ve edebiyatı yaşamlarımızda önemli ve değerli kılan her bir unsur...Büyük çalkantılarla geçen 19. yüzyılın ve 20. yüzyılın ilk yarısından sonra Rus edebiyatı durulur gibi olur. 2. Dünya Savaşı'nın insan ruhlarında açtığı derin yaraların üstüne bir de Stalin'in ürkütücü gölgesi düşer. Rus edebiyatının son büyük yazarları da tarih sahnesinden çekilir ve Rus edebiyatı kuraklaşmaya başlar.İşte tam bu dönemde, 1960'larda Strugatski kardeşler sahneye çıkarlar. Boris ve Arkadiy Strugatski Kardeşler 1961 yılından itibaren Noon evreni serisini kaleme alırlar. Zor Şey Tanrı Olmak, bu serinin 5. kitabı. Serinin diğer kitaplarını okumadığım için, bu romanın diğer kitaplarla ilgisini bilmiyorum. Ancak Zor Şey Tanrı Olmak, bağımsız bir roman olarak okunabiliyor. ***Spoiler***(view spoiler)[Roman, bilinmeyen bir gelecekte geçiyor. Romanın gelecek tarihte geçtiğini teknolojik ilerlemelerden değil, bütün dünyada sosyalizmin kurulmuş olmasından anlıyoruz. Eşitsizlik, savaş, şiddet, sömürü gibi kavramları geride bırakmış olan dünyadan bazı tarihçiler, toplumların gelişme aşamalarını gözlemlemek üzere diğer gezegenlere gidiyorlar. Bu gezegenlerden biri de, romanın geçtiği, ortaçağını yaşamakta olan dünya benzeri bir gezegen. Dünyalı tarihçilerimiz bu gezegende olan biteni gözlemleyebilmek ve bazı "küçük" müdahaleler yapmak üzere bu gezegendeler. Bu tarihçilerden biri de "soylu Don Rumata" kimliğine bürünmüş olan roman kahramanımız. Feodalizmin egemen olduğu bu toplumda bir darbe gerçekleşiyor. Bu darbe sonucu korkunç bir şiddet gezegene hakim oluyor. Kahramanımız Don Rumata da öncesi ve sonrası ile yaşanan trajedilere şahit oluyor. Romanın akışı içinde Rumata sürekli tarihin "nesnel koşullarını" sorguluyor: Kitlelere egemen olan şiddet, vahşet, bayağılık tarihsel koşulların zaruri bir sonucu mudur, yoksa belli toplumlara mı özgüdür? Kötülük nedir? Kötülük kötü bireylerin eylemlerinin bir sonucu mudur, yoksa bireylerden bağımsız bir olgu mudur? Farklı bireylerin tarihteki rolü ve işlevi nedir? Don Rumata bu sorgulamaları yaparken, bir taraftan da şahidi ve parçası olduğu her bir olayda, yavaş yavaş içinde yaşadığı topluma uygun hareket etmeye başlıyor. Zaman zaman mutluluğun hakim olduğu kendi dünyasında asla yapmayacağı bazı eylemleri, bu ortaçağ dünyasında nasıl yaptığını sorguluyor. (hide spoiler)]1964 yılında yazılan bu romanın, simgesel olarak Sovyet devriminin ve Sovyet sisteminin bir yorumu ve eleştirisi olduğu yorumunu yapanlar var. Gerçekten de Strugatski kardeşler satır aralarında hep şu soruları soruyorlar: Toplumların gelişimi doğal akışına mı bırakılmalı, yoksa tarihin akışı (Sovyet devriminde olduğu gibi) zorlanmalı mı? Tarihin akışı zorlanırsa "ideal toplum" hedefine ulaşım gecikir mi? Müthiş etkileyici diyalogların ve paragrafların olduğu bu roman Türkçe'ye oldukça iyi çevrilmiş, ancak bazı bölümleri okurken, yazarların anlatmak istediklerinin çok iyi yansıtılamadığını düşünmeden edemedim. İlaveten, Türk okurlarının çok yabancı olduğu Sovyet bilim kurgusu ile ilgili bir tanıtım yazısı iyi olurdu diye düşünüyorum. Kitabın yeni baskılarında bu tanıtım yazsının yer almasını umuyorum.

  • [P]
    2019-03-24 11:03

    One of the things that makes alien contact attractive is the possibility of interacting with a species more advanced than our own. Outside of films, whenever we think of aliens we tend to see them as superior beings, with great knowledge to impart, more sophisticated technology, etc. In the Strugatsky’s Roadside Picnic the Russian brothers cleverly played on this idea, with the visitors being completely disinterested in human beings, suggesting, you might argue, a kind of haughtiness in their attitude towards us. But what if it is not the case? What if contact was made and it turned out that we are actually the more advanced species? Looking around me, that strikes me as really quite a depressing thought.In any case, this is the situation in Hard to be a God, only the alien planet is not simply primitive, relative to earth, but is essentially earth with the clock turned back thousands of years to the middle ages. Upon discovery of this planet human beings have taken to sending observers to live amongst the natives. The reason for this never seems particularly clear, but it is stressed to these people that their task is limited to observation, that they must not interfere or intervene, and they certainly should not reveal their purpose or real identity. Most of the agents find these rules easy enough to stick to, with the notable exception being Rumata [earth name Anton].For me, this is one of the great existential novels, with Rumata's emotional and intellectual crisis being as intense, and unrelenting, as any of Dostoevsky’s antiheroes. His role, or part, is as a womanising nobleman and dangerous, expert swordsman. In this he fails, not only because he isn’t allowed to kill anyone, but also because he cannot bear to sleep with any of the native women, who are not prone to bathing. More interestingly, he is a superior, more evolved being, who every day is forced to live amongst, to confront, the barbarous, drunken, and primitive. Moreover, the city is run by the tyrannical Don Reba, who plots and kills, and generally brutalises the locals, paying particular attention to the literate, who are captured and hung. It is in relation to this that one begins to understand the significance of the title.[From Aleksei German’s film adaptation of the book]Rumata is the God [in fact numerous characters believe him to be divine] who has the power and knowledge to alter what is happening, even put a stop to it altogether. The dilemma that he faces is a theological one, is one that is generally thought to be God’s. Think about how often you hear people cussing God, criticising Him for not doing something to prevent certain tragedies. When bad things happen He is charged with not caring, with abandoning his children. The counter argument is that if you force people to be good, then goodness essentially becomes meaningless, and if you stop all disasters, if only positive things ever happen, you prevent people from learning through adversity. God, it is said, created free will, and created the world, and then left us all to it, come what may, and this is the best thing for us. These are some of the issues Hard to be a God asks you to consider.Furthermore, Rumata is aware that he cannot make people enlightened. He could remove Don Reba, he could save individual lives [and he does], but this will actually change nothing, or very little, because the people will still be primitive. On this, I was put in mind of certain conflicts, which are deemed humanitarian, whereby the UK and/or US government has invaded countries and sought to remove a tyrannical regime, with Iraq being the most obvious example. I’m not, I ought to point out, calling Iraqis primitive, but there are parallels between that situation and Hard to be a God, as both raise questions about how much of a responsibility do we have to protect other nations, and how worthwhile is it if you cannot guarantee that the people will accept the new conditions and way of living? There is, moreover, something of Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness about the Strugatsky’s book, in that there is a certain arrogance in going into another country [or planet, in this instance] and negatively judging it against your own. In fact, Hard to be a God could be interpreted as a comment on colonial arrogance, because it suggests that perhaps ‘uncivilised’ countries ought to be left alone, be allowed to develop and work things out on their own.“And no matter how much the gray people in power despise knowledge, they can’t do anything about historical objectivity; they can slow it down, but they can’t stop it.”It ought to be clear by now that this is a weighty, complex book. I have in this review really only tentatively jabbed at all the fascinating themes and ideas contained with in it [I haven’t, for example, discussed the cyclical nature of history]. However, one thing that does demand some attention is the theory that Hard to be a God is political allegory, that the world it describes is really Russia in the 1960’s, the decade in which it was written. This is given weight by the Strugatsky’s themselves, who claimed to have started the book as a kind of Three Musketeers in Space-type historical romp, only to change their minds. They did so, it is said, due to fears that the death of Stalin, and 'the thaw' that followed, had done little to change the climate of the country, that artists and their art were still under attack, would be suppressed etc. Yet while there is clearly some of this in the book – specifically Don Reba’s hatred for writers and the literate – I feel it is reaching somewhat to suggest that this is the real or primary focus.Before finishing I want to briefly touch upon a couple of negatives, one more serious than the other. The first is that Hard to be a God is essentially plotless, and pretty repetitive. You will, I’m sure, have your own tolerance levels where this sort of thing is concerned, but it didn’t particularly bother me. More of an issue was the ending, which felt rushed to me. It was as though the Strugatsky’s had simply taken on too much, too many big questions, and couldn’t figure out how to neatly tie up their narrative, and so it ends at an arbitrary point. Yet while this is a criticism it is, in a way, also a kind of compliment too, because I wanted the book to be longer, I wanted another couple of hundred pages so that we [the reader and the authors] could really, fully ride this engrossing and challenging story out and so achieve a more natural and rewarding conclusion.

  • Alex
    2019-03-01 14:53

    To those who read *that crappy SCI-FI jazz* in quest to run awayFrom grim reality of life - I must, in truth, to sayThis piece is not, my friends, at all your regular fantastic taleIt is much deeper, it was written to unveilHow cruel, ignorant, barbaric we still are - at large, as Human RaceHow progress strides its winding roads in slow, painful pace 1. Memorable 52. Social Relevance 53. Informative 34. Originality 55. Thought Provoking 56. Expressiveness 47. Entertaining 58. Visualization 29. Sparks Emotion 510. Life Changing (Pivotal, crucial, determining, defining, momentous, fateful, consequential, climacteric, transformational) 15,5,3,5,5,4,5,2,5,1 ======>> 40/10 = 4.0 of the reviews, which I have seen, says that the mission was "to help speed along the progress of the various indigenous peoples".To clarify above, as I recall it, the book says that the mission was ONLY to watch and that interference with the natural historical and social development on that planet was strictly prohibited (with the exception to allow some concealed limited humanitarian actions in saving lives of artists and scientists).It is important to stress that Strugatskys did not mean "active" "hands-on" God - they meant the God, who never interferes and instead only observes - and that is WHY for humans it is hard to be such a God! Probably it is also hard (;-) ) for English language reviewers to appreciate the enormous amount of humor encapsulated in this book, which is probably lost in translation. Here is the example of such humor ...`Румата перенес отца Кабани на скрипучие нары, стянул с него башмаки, повернул на правый бок и накрыл облысевшей шкурой какого-то давно вымершего животного. При этом отец Кабани на минуту проснулся. Двигаться он не мог, соображать тоже. Он ограничился тем, что пропел несколько стихов из запрещённого к распеванию светского романса "Я как цветочек аленький в твоей ладошке маленькой", после чего гулко захрапел.` АБС "Трудно быть Богом"`Rumata moved father Kabani on squeaky bunk, pulled off his shoes, turned on the right side and covered the bald skin of some long-extinct animal. At this point, the father Kabani for a moment awakened. He could not move and had not an ability to think. He contented himself by vocalizing several verses from the prohibited to sing secular romance "I am like a scarlet flower in your little palm", then began to snore loudly.` ABS "Hard to Be God"

  • Dorin
    2019-02-27 12:54

    Un roman SF care a insistat să fie rusesc despre comunism și feudalism, sau invers.După ce s-au rezolvat toate problemele antropologice și sociale pe Pământ, comuniștii trimit în alte lumi observatori care să ajute populația să evolueze la nivelul lor de civilizație. Romanul e povestea unui astfel de observator care nimerește în mijlocul unei societăți feudale brutale care elimină toți oamenii care știu să citească (romanul precede cu 4 ani Khmerii Roșii) și care apoi trece printr-o răsturnare de regim dramatică.Romanul începe destul de lent, foarte rusesc, și o ține așa cam până pe la jumătate, după care devine un roman SF de acțiune competent, mult mai ușor de digerat și mult mai clar în intenții. Până și propaganda comunistă (necesară pentru a publica ceva în 1964 în Rusia) e digerabilă, și, cu puțin simț politic, poți să vezi în sistemul securității medievale impuse de don Reba NKVD-ul lui Beria. Doar că lucrurile sunt suficient de ambigue, și poți să citești ce vrei.E un roman ok, care se grăbește pe final exact atunci când devine mai interesant. Sau poate devine citibil pe nerăsuflate, nu știu. În orice caz, merită citit. Traducerea românească făcută de Valerian Stoicescu e competentă, se simte efortul de adaptare făcut de traducător.

  • Rick Slane
    2019-03-09 12:52

    Somethings must have been lost in translation. Proper names and places evoked the wrong meanings for me so maybe it's my fault I didn't enjoy it more.For example here's some of my poor rewrite: "Paul Anka won't drive his Tonka truck on the Forgotten Highway to Marshall Fields! Kia is a bookworm running away from Arkansas to Iraq," Red Skelton bellowed, as he passed the Ramada Inn."Don Imus never takes a bath and corporations are people too,"cursed Holy Moses. Welcome Wagon's people apologized to Don Imus. I know this is bad but it's my perception of the translation I read.

  • Manday
    2019-03-11 14:59

    It is unfortunate this book is so hard to get a hold of, as I found it an excellent (albeit confusing) read. It tackles huge, universal themes - the nature of man kind, the course of history, the role of man in society, and many other things. I think it should be considered a classic.

  • Alberto
    2019-03-09 15:51

    The Strugatsky brothers produced a well written novel.I've enjoyed what the main character feels and how he struggles to find a way to help the people around him but without trying to change the course of events in a world in which he's an alien, coming from a more socially and technologically advanced world.It's indeed hard to be a god, in a world where most of the people enjoy drinking a lot and inflicting pain on others whose only fault is to be living in a kingdom that suppresses being human, feeling compassionate and seeking improvements in terms of knowledge.

  • Stacey
    2019-03-11 14:44

    Written by two Russian brothers in the mid-20th century in response to political pressure on art and artistic works under Khrushchev, Hard to be a God is about one man's struggle with the questions of how far to go to save others and live by his moral code, and if he can observe without interfering.The main character in this novel, known mostly as Don Rumata, is a 'historian' who has been placed on a more primitive world to live in and observe the feudal culture that exists there. In kind of a Truman Show way, a camera placed in a gold circlet on his head reports everything he sees, his interactions, the daily life of the people. This culture that he witnesses is a mix of medieval feudalism and 20th century totalitarianism, with secret police and attacks on literate, artistic individuals - writers, poets, artists, musicians, scientists, philosophers, etc.The story kind of drops its readers in the midst of Don Rumata's work. He's been an undercover historian for some time, and has been made sick to his soul by the atrocities committed under the oppressive regime. His dilemma: ordered to observe and never interfere, he feels compelled to rescue the members of the intelligentsia that he can. His role as don, or noble, is to drink and fool around with other dons and ladies, and he finds the company of the other nobles stultifying and dull. When he's not carousing, he tries to avoid the grey police, the ones who arrest and hang the 'bookworms,' as the intelligentsia are called.This novel explores several interesting issues, such as political control of art and science and intellect, how totalitarian regimes affect their subjects, what sparks rebellion, when to prevent (or not at all) abuse, and what consequences acting "for the greater good" might have. In general, these issues aren't explored deeply, but the novel does pose the questions, leaving it up to the readers to think about it further. There is a thesis - that stifling art and science and culture ruins individuals' lives, but more importantly it destroys the society as a whole.As a science fiction novel, I enjoyed Hard to be a God. It's a mix of bleakness and humor, action and silliness. The premise is interesting: sending 'operatives' to other, less-developed worlds, to study the cultures and societies that live there. The world-building is unique and convincing, a mix of Spanish and Russian cultures, medieval society and mid-century communism that have taken on their own characteristics and become a grey, depressing, and dangerous civilization.I struggled with the only female characters - one, an unscrupulous and promiscuous woman who, it is implied, "deserved what she got," and the weak saint, who is helpless without the main character and so honest and simple and true and everything else. Clearly, we have the Madonna and the whore stereotypes here, and no other female characters to balance them out. The characterizations of women are weak, insubstantial, and decidedly unoriginal.The other thing I found difficult was how distanced I felt from the story. For whatever reason, I never felt fully engaged or absorbed. Don Rumata's difficulties were thought-provoking, but the immediacy of the action was filtered too heavily by his narration. Additionally, it seemed like a clip had been taken from Don Rumata's life and work as an operative. As readers, we never really learn about how it was for him before the events that take place in the book. The context of his own life is hard to perceive.Overall, this book gives readers an interesting glimpse into classic science fiction from Russia. If you're looking for a diverse perspective, that would definitely qualify. An adventurous, dark tale that questions the results of totalitarianism, it is not difficult to read. I would recommend this book for fans of classic science fiction and more literary science fiction.See my post on The Book Adventures for read-alikes.

  • Roxana-Mălina Chirilă
    2019-03-06 10:57

    14 februarie 2018: Zicea cineva ceva de „E greu să fii zeu” azi și mi-am dat seama că impresia mea, după mai bine de un an de când am citit cartea asta, e una de dificultate și plictiseală. Uite așa a ajuns de la 3 stele la 2.Ce-am scris la 11 iunie 2016: O carte cu tot felul de idei interesante. Câțiva oameni dintr-o societate SF supertehnologică merg să influențeze o lume rusă-spaniolă medievală și descoperă că e mai greu decât și-au imaginat. Poate pentru că oamenii pot să fie, și sunt, înțepeniți în răutățile și mediocritatea lor, în frici și intrigi, în jocuri de putere și interese mărunte.Personajul principal e un individ care se preface că e un nobil bădăran ca să se integreze în societate și începe să monologheze despre faptul că începe să se și simtă și să devină un nobil bădăran. E o carte din care poți scoate aproape orice citat și va suna în continuare bine - mi se pare că Valerian Stoicescu face o traducere interesantă, care sună românește și în care poți simți diferența între tonul elevat al naratorului și bădărănismul nobililor.Însă cumva, pare confuză. Mai ales la început nu prea înțelegeam ce se întâmplă și de ce. Mi s-a părut și puțin plictisitoare, tocmai de aceea. E însă diferită de alte SF-uri ca stil și abordare, chiar dacă nu mi-a lăsat impresia că ar fi cu adevărat reușită.

  • Rob
    2019-03-21 07:42

    ....The Strugatsky brothers approach science fiction in a very different way than western authors would and that alone makes it a shame that many of their books are out of print. They make a case for more attention to translations if my opinion. There are many more ways to look at science fiction that what the English-speaking world has to offer. Hard To Be a God is, a book that hides a lot under the fast paced surface of the story. Roadside Picnic remains their best known work but I don't think there is much between that book and Hard To Be a God to be honest. It is a work of science fiction that certainly deserves its place in the Masterworks list.Full Random Comments review

  • Vedran Karlić
    2019-03-08 12:42

    Jeste. Teško je biti Bog, baš kao što je bilo teško proći kroz dosadne dijelove ove knjige kako bi se došlo do onih važnih i dobrih stvar. Usprkos njima, sama premisa iz naslova je jasno oslikana kroz društvena zbivanja i zbog nje dobiva 5 zvjezdica.

  • Lubinka Dimitrova
    2019-03-03 07:58

    3,5 stars.

  • Hayledie
    2019-03-08 07:58

    Beni affedin resmen kitabı elimde süpürge ettim, umursamadım 2 ayda bitirdim -belki daha fazla olmuştur- fln ama mantıklı bir bahanem var.Aslında yok. Neyse yoruma geçelim.Çok uzun yazmayacağım çünkü klasik yorumlayacak kadar uzun boylu değilim lakin söylemek istediğim şeyi de içimde tutamam, çatlarım.Kardeşlerin o hikayeye gizlediği ve vermek istediği anlam yüklü mesajı az buz kavradığıma inanıyorum ki verilmek istenen mesaj çok titiz bir şekilde anlatılıyor, anlamamak imkansız. Lakin hikayenin sonu beni deli etti.Bu nasıl bir bitiş amk. Neyse diyeceklerim bu kadardı. Okuduğum ilk Strugatski kitabıydı, hatta ilk bilimkurgu klasiği idi ve ben son olmasını istemiyorum.Umalım ki okuyacağım diğer kitapları 2 ay gibi rezil bir sürede bitirmeyeyim.Sizleri seviyom.Hayledie

  • Sandra
    2019-02-24 08:01

    ***- Сущность человека, - неторопливо жуя, говорил Будах, - в удивительной способности привыкать ко всему. Нет в природе ничего такого, к чему бы человек не притерпелся. Ни лошадь, ни собака, ни мышь не обладают таким свойством. Вероятно, бог, создавая человека, догадывался, на какие муки его обрекает, и дал ему огромный запас сил и терпения. Затруднительно сказать, хорошо это или плохо. Не будь у человека такого терпения и выносливости, все добрые люди давно бы уже погибли, и на свете остались бы злые и бездушные. С другой стороны привычка терпеть и приспосабливаться превращает людей в бессловесных скотов, кои ничем, кроме анатомии, от животных не отличаются и даже превосходят их в беззащитности. И каждый новый день порождает новый ужас зла и насилия.***- Борьба со злом! Но что есть зло? Всякому вольно понимать это по-своему. Для нас, ученых, зло вневежестве, но церковь учит, что невежество - благо, а все зло от знания. Для землепашца зло - налоги и засухи, а для хлеботорговца засухи - добро. Для рабов зло - это пьяный и жестокий хозяин, для ремесленника – алчный ростовщик. Так что же есть зло, против которого надо бороться, дон Румата? - Он грустно оглядел слушателей. - Зло неистребимо. Никакой человек не способен уменьшить его количество в мире. Он может несколько улучшить свою собственную судьбу, но всегда за счет ухудшения судьбы других. И всегда будут короли, более или менее жестокие, бароны, более или менее дикие, и всегда будет невежественный народ, питающий восхищение к своим угнетателям и ненависть к своему освободителю. И все потому, что раб гораздо лучше понимает своего господина, пусть даже самого жестокого, чем своего освободителя, ибо каждый раб отлично представляет себя на месте господина, но мало кто представляет себя на месте бескорыстного освободителя. Таковы люди, дон Румата, и таков наш мир.***Арата замолчал и снова потянулся за хлебом. Румата глядел на его пальцы, лишенные ногтей. Ногти специальным приспособлением вырвал два года тому назад лично дон Рэба. Ты еще не знаешь, подумал Румата. Ты еще тешишь себя мыслью, что обречен на поражение только ты сам. Ты еще не знаешь, как безнадежно само твое дело. Ты еще не знаешь, что враг не столько вне твоих солдат, сколько внутри них. Ты еще, может быть, свалишь Орден, и волна крестьянского бунта забросит тебя на Арканарский трон, ты сравняешь с землей дворянские замки, утопишь баронов в проливе, и восставший народ воздаст тебе все почести, как великому освободителю, и ты будешь добр и мудр - единственный добрый и мудрый человек в твоем королевстве. И по доброте ты станешь раздавать земли своим сподвижникам, а на что сподвижникам земли без крепостных? И завертится колесо в обратную сторону. И хорошо еще будет, если ты успеешь умереть своей смертью и не увидишь появления новых графов и баронов из твоих вчерашних верных бойцов. Так уже бывало, мой славный Арата, и на Земле и на твоей планете.

  • Yzabel Ginsberg
    2019-03-03 10:38

    I read this one for a book club discussion. I didn't like it much.- Too full of pondering instead of being in the action, and as a result, the main character didn't appear so much like a "god who doesn't know whether he should intervene or not", than like a passive observer.- The political commentary laid it a bit too tick to my tastes. It called for something more subtle.- The female characters. Only two, and basically one is a wallflower who's obviously only here to get kidnapped or whatever, and the other is the courtesan type who "gets what she deserves—and here's to notice that in spite of all his disgust for this "backward society", our hero just goes about his business knowing all too well what he'll left in his wake (and all for nothing). Granted, there's Anka, but I don't really se the point of having her in the novel at all. As a love interest? I couldn't feel anything there, so I really don't know.- The translation: I can't compare with the original text, but the prose in general felt like something had been... lost. I probably wouldn't have liked it much more had it been for a different translation; still, it sure didn't help.

  • Nemo
    2019-03-20 07:58

    "Hard to Be a Good" of the Strugatsky brothers is a very interesting book and quite unusual to the reader who is used to the American-British science fiction.This is due to the style in which it is written, the philosophical discussions, the irony and sophisticated sociopolitical criticism expounded in the book. More surprising is the fact that this book was published in 1964 in the USSR. This is first book of the Strugatsky brothers that I read.A couple of years ago I read an English translation of the book and I have just finished reading a Spanish translation of the novel. There is a big difference in text between the two translations.I did not like these translations. I can imagine that a lot of the fine irony and humor present in the book is lost in the translations, as it was expressed by some readers in their reviews.There is an interesting difference between the titles of the English and Spanish translations of the novel. In Spanish the title is "Qué difícil es ser Dios". This gives possible different interpretations of the book.As it is mentioned in the summary, the book deals with some observers (social scientists) of Earth that are undercover mission in an alien planet inhabited by humans.The level of the human civilization of this planet is similar to the Middle Ages in Earth. The authors called it feudal-fascist society.The mission of the observers is to register (and not interfere in) the political events of this society. The main character Rumata/Anton has an internal and emotional conflict due to the fact, if he should interfere in the events of the alien society in order to help the people, who are dying and suffering in this society. But his instructions are only to observe and register these events, and never get involved in them.The society shown in the alien planet has more in common with the Nazism/Stalinism, than with a feudal society of the Middle Ages.There are many direct references to the Nazism, for instance "The Gray" is a direct reference to the SA (Sturmabteilung) and "The Black Monks" refers to the SS (Schutzstaffel). The events to the fight between them is a direct reference to the "Night of the Long Knives" (Nacht der langen Messer). Moreover in the novel, it is mentioned Ernst Rhöm ("History was about to repeat itself; another one to share the fate of Captain Ernst Röhm of Nazi fame!").However there is other interpretation of the events of the novel as a criticism of the Stalinism, as for example the persecution and extermination of the intellectuals.The interpretation of the history expounded in the book is strongly influenced by the Historical Materialism ideology.The dialogue at the end of the novel between Rumata and Budach (Budaj, in the Spanish translation) is very interesting. It is a philosophical discussion about the progress of the humanity and the nature of power. The progress and evolution of humanity it is shown as a fight agains evil.According to this dialogue the nature of God is to observe and know everything but it is powerless to change things. An interesting point of this dialogue is the following phrase:' "Man's nature (...) is characterized by his ability to adjust to everything. There is nothing in this world that man cannot adjust to." 'This fact is crucial to understand the nature of power. And this is how the tyrants oppress their subjects, and preserve the power.It is also worth mentioning the fine irony that the authors show in the novel, through the names of different places. For instance "Tower of Joy", for a place where the dungeons are; and the authors give explanations this fact, also we can find "Boulevard of Overwhelming Gratitude" and other examples like that. This fact shows the use of language as a tool of political control. I strongly recommend this book, which has different possible interpretations.I gave only 4 stars, because I did not like the translations.

  • Simon Hollway
    2019-03-08 10:45

    Oh dear. Roadside Picnic is an astonishing novel - Hard to be a God is a shocking misfire. Maybe it was the new translation only just released - 2014 Bormashenko translation published by Chicago Review Press. As soon as I smacked up against the word 'ballyhooed', I knew I was in for a rocky ride. Actually, come to think of it, even the newly commissioned 'Foreword' to the book by Hari Kunzru read like a C-grade student essay...and I quote, 'this is no reactionary celebration of aristocratic derring-do.' Yep, the clues were there at the start.Cod medieval fantasy served up in heavy-handed political satire. Might possibly appeal to the Hunger Games crowd. Have no idea why this has so many good must be me. A quick scan of most of the reviewers' thumbnail pics suggests a younger, less photoshopped crowd plus a number of cats but even they look pretty fresh. So I'm thinking that this is essentially a young adults' or a young cats' book. Don't get me wrong, I like young adults but only to look at or touch, not to actively converse or share reading lists with. I was initially intrigued by the comparisons with Iain Banks. In retrospect, those observations are at best sacrilegious but more likely libellous and the work of Satan. But Roadside Picnic was so very, very good?!!No, it must be the translation. Or is it the book?