Lord of Light - Roger Zelazny

"No word matters. But man forgets reality and remembers words."

Lord of Light is a science-fiction novel written by Roger Zelazny, first published in 1967. The story sets place on a colonized planet in the future. To survive in an alien environment, the first human refugees that came by a spaceship and set foot in this place developed a technology to transfer --reincarnate-- human's soul into a new body and a magic-like technology called "Aspect". With these, they created a new society based on Hindu's caste system and rule the planet as immortal beings. Mahasamatman, or Sam, one of the former crews of the spaceship, rejected this society's way of ruling that prevents the people to advance their technology and wanted to overthrow it.

This is a hard book to read and understand. First, because of the abundance of characters in this book. Second, because of the non-linear storytelling. The book is apparently divided into 7 stories, with only the first and last chapters happening in the present. It's quite hard to tell what's happening if you miss something. After finishing the book, I needed to open Wikipedia to make sure that I didn't miss anything (and I missed a lot lol). Lastly, the dialogues and actions sometimes feel weird and I couldn't really follow it well. Sometimes important conflicts or events happen so quickly that I feel like the author were rushing things up.

That being said, the core idea of this book is really solid. I just wish that it was delivered a little bit better. There are a lot of interesting characters in the story that I really like, some of them unfortunately were not given too much time to be developed by the author.

In conclusion, I didn't enjoy reading this book as much as I wanted. However, reading the plot summary in Wikipedia made me want to give this book a second chance. Maybe I will appreciate it more when I know what should be expected.

Lord of Light
Roger Zelazny
First Published