Jeff Vandermeer's Finch is one bent bit of imagining. Thought it reminded me of China Miéville's, Perdido Street Station, which blew me away, it had it's own originality and intrigue. Just think of aliens living beneath you and the world running riot with fungal rot that is slowly diminishing your life and all that you and your physical world are. Spooky! The protagonist is not the easiest fellow to like but his complexity drags you along until you don't want to let go and you need to know more about him. He's just a poor plodding detective trying to do his job.
At Empire's Edge by William C. Dietz, book one of a new duology, was almost put aside after the first few pages. I picked it up a little later and the hooks were set. I burned the words off the pages and sighed with contentment as I closed the book. Space Opera, Candy, Yum!
Surprise, surprise, some new thinking in Fantasy Land. N. K. Jemisin caught me off guard with The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms. It is a poor lass from the hinterlands come to the city as a poor prospect to vie with two psychopaths for the throne. But it is so much more. The Gods are enslaved to the whims of the city folk, but twist any and all commands to some twisted demented "Mr. Literal" response. What fun!
I have saved the most interesting for last. Some of the professional reviewers are so wrong about this author's first novel. Principles of Angels by Janie Fenn is terrific. The broken, the depraved and the deprived reign supreme in the delicious tale. The city is a brilliant closed system construct. The players are brutal beyond pale. Faint at heart be forewarned. Yet, those of you, who like me, walked through Stieg Larsson's first and brilliant tale of broken abused humans, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, without doubting the potential cruelty of the human being may enjoy this read. I could do nothing less than admire and respect the young male protagonist telling (living) this tale.
It was so shocking, I can't remember which of the three books above did me in, It was not Dietz' Space Opera, but I was just reading along minding my own business and things slipped in to a full blown stream of consciousness event. I don't think it was a psychotic break, I may have suddenly started channeling William S. Burrows (Naked Lunch), I'm just not sure. The point beyond the event is, I guess, (I don't even know why I'm making this point, but hey, this is Science Fiction, strange things happen.) there are linguistic programmers out there that don't even know they are linguistic programmers and they want your brain, they want your heart, they want your soul. It may be a talk show host, it may be a pretend news man. It may be an author. It might be me. Check the facts, just check the facts. Go find independent and opposing forces, go look at raw data. Don't roll over because you heard it before. "Doubt your doubts", as my semantics professor kept harping at me back in 1968. Read a book, Go with the flow. Don't let anybody know you're the least bit as confused as they are (except for friends that need to know they are not alone).
Obvious Music of the Moment
The Rolling Stones
19th Nervous Breakdown, Disc 1,Track 7 Forty Licks
Torn and Frayed Track 7 Exile on Main Street
Jigsaw Puzzle, Track 5, Beggars Banquet
Thank goodness for mood music to sound track your life with.
little richard, Big Universe