The Sparrow is an odd novel- a mixture of science fiction and religion. It is not a perfect novel but it is pretty close. Russell writes very well, the characters are interesting and believable, and the plot was fascinating and well paced. As a science fiction novel, Russell describes first contact with our neighbors at Alpha Centauri. Unlike most first contact stories, we’re doing the contacting. As a religious novel she deals with faith and what we can or should expect from God. Both threads are dealt with in a logical and thought provoking manor. It is one of the reasons it took me so long to read this book- I wanted to think about what I was reading. The themes were complex but her writing style was not. It wasn’t ponderous nor complex- something of an easy read.
I was tempted to describe some plot holes but the more I think about them the more they fade into irrelevance. And complex issues like the hasta’akala are dealt with at the end of the book. I look forward to reading her sequel: “Children of God“.
“Matthew ten, verse twenty-nine,” Vincenzo Giuliani said quietly.
“Not one sparrow can fall to the ground without your Farther knowing it.”
“But the sparrow still falls,” Felipe said.