In the short time since its publication in English, Roadside Picnic has established itself as an important novel…. The hunting trips through this alien refuse area are fascinating. The effect of the unknown on the lives of the stalkers, scientists and townspeople is moving, often heartbreaking. What makes the story work are the human reactions and relationships, the sudden details that startle the reader but are part of the normal world of the story. The characters accept their world with all its changes, and so do we.
At one point a character speculates on the notion of reason as an explicit form of instinct, through which we approach and assimilate the unknown. It occurred to me as...
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