Tag Archive: Dystopia

Apr 24 2017

Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters

Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters is a hell of a book. The premise is that amendments to the US Constitution in the 1860s preserved the Union and averted the Civil War, but at the cost of continuing to accept slavery in states that chose to keep their peculiar institution. In the 21st century, a …

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Apr 23 2017

The Man In The High Castle by Philip K Dick

Okay, so I came to this book from the very excellent Amazon show, and it almost seems unfair to review it now when I’ll always have the comparison in my mind. As source material for the very excellent show, it’s very rich in subject, and I was impressed by Philip K Dick’s ability to get …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/04/23/the-man-in-the-high-castle-by-philip-k-dick/

Apr 23 2017

The Foundation Pit by Andrey Platonov

Where to even begin with The Foundation Pit? The author, Andrey Platonov was born in Russia in 1899, the son of a railway worker, and later worked as a land reclamation expert. He was a fervent supporter of the Russian Revolution; during the 1920s he supervised the digging of wells, construction of ponds, and draining …

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Apr 10 2017

Shadow & Claw (The Book of the New Sun #1-2 ) by Gene Wolfe

At the end, I put down the book and said aloud, “That was a goddamn waste of time.” I get that this is just the first two books in a four (or five, if you’re a completist) book series, but damn, how can you reasonably argue that a reader has to slog through 400+ pages …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/04/10/shadow-claw-the-book-of-the-new-sun-1-2-by-gene-wolfe/

Mar 18 2017

Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown

I don’t know why I expected something lesser than what I read. I think I’d heard too many murmurs of “derivative” and “boy Katniss” but this really isn’t any of that at all. Sure, Red Rising and The Hunger Games both have dystopian settings featuring underdogs who rise to the top via brutal competitions, and …

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Feb 11 2017

Gilded Cage (Dark Gifts #1) by Vic James

So I was trying to explain to a friend why I think this book is important for the generation of YA readers who may encounter it, thinking, much like Gilded Cage’s Abi does (and I did, tbh, when I first picked it up,) that it’ll be a romantic Upstairs/Downstairs sort of novel with magical powers, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/02/11/gilded-cage-dark-gifts-1-by-vic-james/

Jan 31 2017

Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel

Ugh, I’m so fucking tired of “literary” writers slumming it in genre fiction. Authors, if you’re going to attempt dystopian fiction or science fiction or fantasy, understand: the most important thing is the world-building. You HAVE to build a convincing setting that makes sense and works according to a) rules of internal logic, and b) …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/01/31/station-eleven-by-emily-st-john-mandel/

Dec 24 2016

Fables: Werewolves Of The Heartland (Fables #17) by Bill Willingham et al

Not a great jumping on point for new readers, no matter what the press may say. I enjoyed it as a bit of filler story for Bigby on the road, and it answers a few questions raised by his time fighting in WWII, but I didn’t feel it was an essential part of the Fables …

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Oct 01 2016

The Girl With All The Gifts by M. R. Carey

This is another one of those books where I saw that a movie was coming out, and the trailer looked good enough that I felt I ought to read the book before I was inadvertently spoiled as to what happens. And then I was puzzled to discover that M. R. Carey is the pseudonym of …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/10/01/the-girl-with-all-the-gifts-by-m-r-carey/

Mar 08 2016

The Beautiful Beaureaucrat by Helen Phillips

You’d think a book this slim wouldn’t be so hard to properly review. There were things I really, really liked about it, primary among them being the all too realistic depiction of frustration and desperation at joblessness and alienation in a city that should be providing opportunities but is, instead, serving primarily as an exhausting …

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