16 03 2010

And among the tens of billions on Earth who watched a few seconds of their duel were women

who took note of their shields and understood

Not so many pages into this science fiction anthology you will come across the first story that is not even remotely science fiction, and by the time you reach the midpoint it will dawn on you that this is not, in fact, a Science Fiction anthology but a horror/fantasy/gives-me-the-skeevies anthology with a few futuristic or otherworldly themed pieces tossed in to add a bit of flavor.

I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Gene Wolfe has quick become my hero for his deft usage of subtle imagery and a carefully-controlled flow of information to imbue his writing with an eerie ephemeral ambiance that settles over you like a warm blanket on a blustery day. I cannot wait to get my hands on a complete novel of his; I want to see what he can do when his hundreds of pages are devoted to building a single world, rather than dozens of snapshots.

I mean seriously, he had a talking purple Tyrannosaurus Rex in there! How could I not feel like anything other than a kid in a candy shop?




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