Next up, McMoties?

Posted By SandChigger on December 10, 2010

Probably not, but Jennifer R. Pournelle, daughter of Jerry Pournelle, has just e-published Outies, a sequel to The Mote in God’s Eye and The Gripping Hand.

Pournelle, a Research Assistant Professor in the School of the Environment at University of California, San Diego, is definitely not the same sort of half-brain-dead former-alcoholic waste that we’ve seen inherit and take over certain other science-fiction franchises (ahem), so presumably she won’t run the Moties into the ground with umpteen cash-cow-milking sequels.

Still, you have to wonder whether the world really needed another Motie book. From the product description on Amazon, it sounds like the focus is more on the human empire than the aliens. (The title appears to be taken from the “outworlds” not yet part of the empire.) Frankly, the Moties and their civilization were the really interesting part of the two books by Niven and Pournelle, not the humans with their aristocracy- and military-focused society, which grew increasing tedious in the second book.

And Pournelle has begun flogging her book in somewhat-related threads in the customer discussion forums on Amazon:

Outies (The Mote in God’s Eye) is a sequel to Niven & Pournelle’s fabulous The Mote in God’s Eye — but it stands on its own two (or three, or four) feet. Let’s see — I guess I’d call it gender-bending military-environmental science fiction with strong characters, plot, and sense of place, that really digs at what it means to be an “alien” — and what’s the relationship between sociology and biology. If you don’t have a Kindle, there’s a free Kindle Reader download for PC, Mac, etc.

Yikes… anyone want to bet this thing isn’t loaded with politically correct goodness?

About The Author

I am a bug.


20 Responses to “Next up, McMoties?”

  1. Kojiro says:

    Genderbending, eh? Rule 63 on Mote in God’s Eye.

  2. Serkanner says:

    I truly don’t see the need for a third Motie novel. I like the two ones we already have, but that’s it. So we have another spawn that tries to cash in from dad. No thanks.

  3. SandChigger says:

    I kinda wonder if she’s not using the Motie-verse as a platform for the exposition of her own trendy-wow ideas and/or theories. She’s a cultural anthropologist, after all.

    (The last time I checked today, she hadn’t come back to and replied in the thread she basically spammed.)

  4. TheDukester says:

    Ugh. More “every single SF thing ever printed needs 20 sequels” bullshit. God, I hate SF right now.

  5. J.R. Pournelle says:

    Wow. What is it y’all do here: Psychic readings? I’m impressed, if confused: Which is it: way too military-Empire, way too trendy-wow, way too many humans, or no need for any more Moties? Drop and give me twenty, but in a state of zen, while reading a Dune sequel, I guess.

    Seriously, yes, there are Moties, although probably not the Moties you expect. Yes, the title refers to Outworlds, specifically that of New Utah.Yes, there are a couple of Imperials, but those won’t be the ones you expect, either, and they are not central to the story. Well, except for The Librarian, but I don’t think he’s the sort of Imperial you meant.

    No, there isn’t much in the way of trendy-wow. Sorry to dissapoint: I don’t do touchy-feely PC trendy-wow: I do hard science and work in war zones. I do speculate about how energy technology might work on a sparsely populated, isolated world with no hydrocarbons or fissionable resources, but I think that’s called science fiction, not trendy-wow. I also speculate about how Mormonism might evolve and fraction over the course of a millenium. If you think that’s too much PC goodness, you haven’t met the New Utah TCM.

    But no, you’ll find no stern chases here. The protagonist hates space travel. And no, I plan no further sequels, and certainly not McMoties, although Asach Quinn may live to see another book. No, I’m not milking Daddy’s rep, but I can’t help being related to him. By the way, in the interest of acuracy, I’m his get, not his spawn: I can swim, but I can’t breath under water.

    Actually, I wrote the book on a bet, and it’s strongly influenced by my experiences in Iraq, but that’s another story. If you download the free chunk Amazon gives you, you can scan the character list and read the first couple of chapters for the feel of the thing – or not, as you like. No need, of course, if you have already channelled the content via some non-trendy-wow but otherwise legitimate woo-woo process..

    Regarding the unanswered thread post , I’ll see your chigger, and raise you a camel spider. Sorry, I honestly didn’t know that one post letting those who visit a relevant thread on a bookseller’s website know that a book was, well, for sale constituted spamming. Now I know. Won’t happen again. But NAH-nah-nah-NAH- nah – made ya look!

  6. SandChigger says:

    LOL. Marhaba w-achlan biki fi-alami! :twisted:

    Thanks for the added info. The book sounds a WHOLE lot more interesting now. You probably just made yourself another sale. (Soon as I get me a Kindle, that is.) :lol:

    Sigh… why couldn’t Frank Herbert have had a kid with a brain, too. :(

    (Oh, and one minor point: you need more palatalization in your nahs. ;) )

  7. J.R. Pournelle says:

    OK, NYEAH nyeah nyeah NYEAH nyeah!

    Just so you know that there is no need to miss out on the joys of e-reading (no spam intended here!) on the right-hand side of any e-book page on Amazon there’s a link to download a FREE Kindle Reader app for almost any device (PC/MAC/I-stuff/etc.). I’ve been having fun with that. While I don’t actually NEED to be able to read out-of-copyright 19th century literature on my phone, I am amazed that I can.

    Ironically, the first criticism I got on the first draft was “it’s like Dune. Just way too much complicated descriptive crap.” Complicated descriptive crap lovers, unite!

  8. SandChigger says:

    LOL. Well, maybe you can guess how I feel about ticking off the kind of person who could write that sort of comment? ;) You could do a lot worse than being compared to Dune!

    Thanks, but I know about the free reader app, it just hasn’t been compatible with the systems on my machines. (I haven’t updated to the most recent versions yet.) Besides, I’m really trying hard to rationalize the outlay for that Kindle! :)

  9. Hi- Just a quick update, because I think you asked, or one of the posters to another thread you were on asked (sorry, I can’t remember which thread it was on) – it’s now also available in e-Pub format from Barnes & Noble (works on Nook, Sony, etc), & soon to be up in multiple formats (including .pdf I hope) from Google e-Books. And if you really, really insist on a print version, you can request one from the website above.

  10. SandChigger says:

    OK. I think it was M. Helsdon who asked about the print version. I’m still futzing over which Kindle to get. ;)

  11. Greg Tidwell says:

    This is the kind of clelbrity drive-by I can get behind. Do I have to reread the cruddy sequel to understand what is going on in this book?

    Did you ever get to call Niven “Uncle Larry”?

  12. SandChigger says:

    :lol: I also didn’t enjoy Hand as much as the first book, but there was still some good stuff in it. (Like descriptions of the ice comet they were using as a spaceship. I like it anytime an author doesn’t just hand-wave away in-system travel. ;) )

  13. E.LeGuille says:

    Well, after reading this, I mentioned the book to my mom a few days ago. Guess what I got for Christmas? “The Mote in God’s Eye”, and “A Stranger in a Strange Place”. I never knew about the first, so I gotta thank Chigger for another book in my library!

  14. SandChigger says:

    Hey, long time no see! :)

    I really loved Mote when I first read it … way back in high school, I think! I reread it a couple years ago before reading the sequel, The Gripping Hand, and I thought the original had held up pretty well. Hope you enjoy it!

  15. E.LeGuille says:

    Dune was my highschool book, which started me in this genre. I also recently re-read Richard Jeffries’ “After London; or, Wild England”. Love that book. And my step-mom had a print of Robert Heinlein’s “Stranger in a Strange Land.” Some of the dialogue in that book just kills me.

  16. Ok, y’all, and only because somebody asked, I am driving by to let you know that it is now in print (trade paperback), for sale around & about and here. For those who are Motied out, but Middle East interested, or just want to know where I was coming from, here’s a blurb on my recent (and ongoing) environmental research/work in Iraq:
    I am headed back there shortly.

  17. Oh, and @ Greg: uh, no – just “Larry.” I could, however, tell some tales…

  18. SandChigger says:

    Hi again! Thanks for dropping by and letting us know about the trade paperback!

    (And be careful over there!)

  19. …I was indeed, and now I’m off again, only having just returned from filming in the Dubai dunes & Iraq marshes with National Geographic Television. Doesn’t that just roll off the tongue? Could have knocked me over with a – with a thing they use to knock people over with on Dune – when I got that call! I’ll be blogging this trip at the above URL -which has nothing to do with either Moties or Dune, but hopefully is of interest those of the Dune persuasion, or at least has a certain ???? ?????.

  20. SandChigger says:

    Hi, Jenny! Thanks for dropping by again and keeping us informed of things like this!

    (By the way, what was the phrase you used at the end? Looks like WordPress ate it. If you let me know, I can try to repair it.)

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