Rama II

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For the King of Thailand named Rama II, see Rama II of Thailand

Rama II is a novel by Gentry Lee and Arthur C. Clarke first published in 1989. It recounts humankind's further interaction with the Ramans, first introduced in Rendezvous with Rama. Written primarily by Gentry Lee, Rama II has a dramatically different writing style than the original, resulting in a more character driven narrative and far less speculative (i.e. "futuristic") mindset, ambience and human relations. Readers are advised to align their expectations accordingly.

Rama II is the first novel of the "new" Rama series, as Rendezvous with Rama is not always counted as part of it. The Rama series comprises two more sequels: The Garden of Rama and Rama Revealed.

Plot summary

70 years after the events of Rendezvous with Rama, the second Raman vessel finally enters the solar system. This time the humans are prepared and set out to unlock more of Rama's mysteries. Or so they thought.

Rama II brings new characters into a new story arc mostly unrelated to the original and largely is a setup for its own sequels.

Readers will notice a great contrast between Rendezvous with Rama and this novel. While the former depicted a utopic future and focused almost totally in the sci-fi elements, Rama II and its sequels deconstruct Clarke's vision of human colonies throughout the Solar System through a global economic crisis that forced their almost total deactivation. Then follows a very different storytelling that brings forward contemporary issues like abortion, racism, drug abuse and organized crime. Tension and violence escalate throughout the series, giving the reader a somewhat dystopic vision of the future, and a feel different from Clarke's style.

Derived works

In 1996, Sierra Entertainment released Rama, a graphic adventure game for the PC inspired by Rama II's main characters.

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