March 08, 2005

Light Reading

Posted at March 8, 2005 10:07 AM in Science Fiction .

I've been doing a bit of non-school reading this last week. I had The Golden Compass on the plane to Pantheacon a couple of weeks ago. This last week, I read The Subtle Knife as well, which is the sequel for those that don't know. As people had told me, it wasn't quite as good as the first novel but still quite well written.

In an effort to be more financially conscientious, I'm getting more books from the library system. There were several books on my Amazon wish list that I found last week. I believe that they were recommended by BoingBoing and Cory Doctorow because I wouldn't necessarily have picked these particular needles from the book haystack without being pointed at them.

One of these is Crux, which is time kind of time travel space opera bit. I haven't read that one yet. The other was Bad Magic, which is a first novel by Stephan Zielinski. I was very surprised. It turned out to be quite a page turner. It is also, in some sense, the book that I could have written with my background. It is a "scary monsters are out there" book in a light hearted way. Basically, there are supernatural monsters in the world. In an effort at self-preservation, people learned to close their third eyes as a survival instinct under the "if I can't see them, they can't see me" principle, which turns out to actually work for the most part. People, as a whole, are oblivious but the monsters are organized and have their own plans for people. Enter our heroes, a cell of revolutionary magicians, witches, professors, and general do-gooders who have some ability (varying with the person) to at least see the monsters and affect them and a desire to save the world while not getting crushed. Some of the same themes as The Invisibles but with a completely different tone. Like I said, it is pretty light hearted in a lot of ways, kind of like Cory Doctorow's work. There are enough little references to bits and enough genuine creative parts that I know the author has been pondering and thinking through this book for a while. In any case, I recommend people to read it, especially when it comes out in paperback.

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