Blindsight by Peter Watts Doesn’t Belong on A “Best” Science-Fiction Horror List

Blindsight by Peter Watts Doesn’t Belong on A “Best” Science-Fiction Horror List

We read “Blindsight” by Peter Watts because it was listed on an on-line short-list of best science-fiction horror novels. It doesn’t belong there.

“Blindsight” sounds like it has great potential when summarized: a team of scientists on a mission to Neptune to intercept an alien vessel, which turns out to be inhospitable and filled with tentacled creatures called “scramblers.” The mission, led by a vampire (?!), goes sideways, and the AI of the human ship uses its antimatter to destroy the alien vessel, while the main protagonist hitches an escape pod back to earth, where humans are being subjected to extermination by rebelling vampires. Hmm… what?

The actual unfolding of the Blindsight story is dull, thick with scientific and psychological jargon and musings, and has no compelling characters to drive the story. Couldn’t wait for “Blindsight“ to just be over. “Blindsight” is another science fiction novel, similar to “Ancillary Justice” or the Foundation series, which are thin on character development and heavy on narrative explanations of gross details and matter-of-fact events. “Blindsight” is a definite pass. Maybe it will make a good movie one day.