Yes, it’s an actual book review of a title I committed myself to 25 months ago. I haven’t done a similar review in 10 months.
The reviewing mill of MarzAat grinds slow. Whether it grinds fine or even produces anything useful you will have to decide.
The mill’s scheduling is also erratic. This book wasn’t even the next in the chute, but I found myself limited to what was on the kindle one day, so I started it.
It came from NewCon Press whose offerings I’ve reviewed in the past: Dark Currents and David Hutchinson’s collection Sleeps with Angels. And I’ve enjoyed them. However, even my blogger conscience was starting to feel guilty about asking for any more of their offerings without reviewing what I had been given.
In fact, the next “new” title I will be reviewing is Simon Morden’s At the Speed of Light, also from NewCon Press.
Review: The 1000 Year Reich and Other Stories, Ian Watson, 2016.
I’ve enjoyed the Watson I’ve read before. There was the amusing bit of recursive science fiction in his “The World Science Convention of 2080” (fan experiences in journeying to the event in a world where technology has regressed). There was “The Great Atlantic Swimming Race” (the link takes you to James Gunn’s The Road to Science Fiction #5: The British Way so we haven’t escaped all Gunn references), a rumination on LiveAid charity stunts. A versatile writer, he turned in a couple of effective Lovecraftian bits with “The Black Wall of Jerusalem” and “The Walker in the Cemetery”. I enjoyed what seemed to be a witty takeoff on J. G. Ballard’s Concrete Island in the short story “Long Stay” in a collection edited by Ian Whales, also associated with NewCon Press.
However, against my enjoyment of those short works, is The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction’s description of his novel The Embedding as a novel about perception molded by language with “erratic quicksilver shiftiness”. That doesn’t seem my thing, so I’ve read none of his novels. Continue reading