RARA-AVIS: Re: RARA-AVIS recent reading/intro

From: Neddal Ayad ( nayad@mun.ca)
Date: 09 Jun 2004

Hello all, I'm new to the group and this thread seems like a good place to jump in.

A brief introduction - My name is Neddal, I'm from St. John's, NL, and I write and make noise.

Recent reads -
"Game" by Conrad Williams. I'm not sure if this novella is typical of Williams' writing as I've not read his novels or his short story collection (all SF/horror). The novella is set in and around a slightly off-kilter version of London. The plot revolves around a chance encounter gone bad, a sadistic gangster, a scam involving bad meat, and a woman who is an "arrester."
(One of a group of people who catch glimpses of the future. Problem - The visions cause them to "arrest" or black out and, uh, loose things...I can't go much more detail than that w/o blowing part of the plot.) It's a great, quick read. I hope Williams does more crime fiction soon.

"Brotherhood of Mutilation" by Brian Evenson Evenson is another horror-writer-by-day exploring noir. This chapbook
(published by the same press as the Williams book, Earthling Publications <http://www.earthlingpub.com>) is pretty bleak. The story centres around a detective who's lost a hand in the course of an investigation. As the story opens, he's drowing in self-pity when he's approached by two men who believe that he's uniquely qualified to work their case. Things get real nasty, real quick. It's shot through with a particularly dark sense of black humour that balances the bleakness. As with the Williams, it's a quick read.

"Altered Carbon" by Richard Morgan by Richard Morgan It's been getting a lot of hype in the SF community. It won the PKD award and has been optioned by Warner Bros. (I believe.) It's set in a future where people can store their personalities on a database and if killed, seriously injured can download themselves into new bodies or
"sleeves." I'm not sure what I was expecting going in, but I was a bit disappointed. Morgan has some great ideas, but the execution is sloppy and it comes off as a Gibson/Ellroy/PKD pastiche. Granted it's extremely well-done, is a fun read, and in the right hands will make a hell of a movie, but I expect more from a book that's supposed to be

Nice to meet you all.


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