Een reis naar Arcturus by David Lindsay

  • Started on: 2012-03-07
  • Finished on: 2012-03-11
  • Read in: Dutch
  • Rating: “**—”
  • Genre(s): Science Fiction


This is one of the early classics of science fiction, loved by C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien and many more. This book came from my dads collection, and I was curious what it was about.
This the story of Maskull, who, at a séance, meets his friend Nightspore and a friend of Nightspore, Krag. Pretty soon in the story things turn weird. At the séance a dead man shows up with a weird grin on his face, and he is destroyed by Krag. Krag offers to take Maskull and Nightspore on a voyage to Arcturus, to the planet Tormance. When Maskull wakes up at Tormance, in a desert, Nightspore and Krag are nowhere to be found, and Maskull has a third limb growing from his chest. This starts the weirdest journey, where Maskull meets many characters, with different bodies, different philosophies and different landscapes.
If I had to describe this book in one word, it would be weird. It flows everywhere, reading like someone is either high or dreaming. I understand that the different transformations, lands and characters represent different philosophies and/or religions, but I have a feeling a lot of that went over my head. Maybe this is a book you have to study more, and have some background information on to truly appreciate. It is fantastical, and I get how for some writers this is inspirational, but to me it was too much and too weird. I don’t think I got the story, nor the ending, and thereby missed much that there was there to enjoy. However, I kept picking the book up, intrigued by all the adventures, and keen to know what Lindsay would think up next. Three out of four stars.