Jun 23, 2011

Dance with dragons is here (almost)

This title will be auto-delivered to your Kindle on July 12,2011. In two weeks! In just over two weeks I'll begin to tell you how the saga continues, and you'll be reading about the hardships and miseries of our favourite characters and, yes, I know which is yours:

Cersei Lannister

Jun 18, 2011

Charles Stross: Iron Sunrise

Rachel Mansour works as a hostage negociator. As soon as she has finished a job with a psychotic performance artist harboring a nuclear warhead, she's enlisted in a secret operation. She's to investigate  an act of apparent sabotage: Moscow's (one remote interstellar colony) host star exploded, annihilating an entire solar system and forcing the evacuation of nearby colonies. the answers to such questions may lie with Wednesday, a rambunctious adolescent girl whose family is fleeing the expanding explosion, and between whose story and Rachel's the novel alternates.

This is a sequel to "Singularity Sky" but that outdoes its achievements in every particular. Character that become beliavable people. Great (but awkward) sense of humour. One faultless space-opera, full of emotion, evil but believable villains, exciting action and good dialogue.

Clever building of a fascist nazi-type society, the ReMastered who call themselves "Ubermensch" (like Nietzsche's) and, ultimately, great great read.

Jun 10, 2011

Charles Stross - The Atrocity Archives

Composed of two different text, the short novel The Atrocity Archive and the Hugo-award winner novella The Concrete Jungle, this story deals with spionage in a Lovecraftian world where higher mathematics are the key that opens gates to other dimensions. The protagonist of both stories is a computer expert named Bob Howard forced to work for a secret British intelligence organization called "The Laundry". Here horror themes are combined with retro-nazi threat and mixed with a satire of bureaucracy. First-rate book, not too easy to read but shamelessly fun.

Make no mistake, The Concrete Jungle has nothing to do with Tom deSimone's film.

In one of my favourite reviews about this book, the one entitled "Never park in a Hilbert space" by Marc Ruby™ "The Noh Hare™" in Amazon, he says:

Intrigued? If you are comfortable with computers, or at least have a handle on geek speak and enjoy twisted, funny writers whose imaginations have run wild, this is something you will want to read. Despite a large serving of sarcasm and irony, Stross also manages to deliver a genuinely interesting plot with as much action as there is esoteric muttering.

It's geeky but also hilarious and different from everything else I've read, genuinely and thuggishly original.

From SF Site

Bob Howard is working on a desk job for the "Laundry", but he's bucking for field service. We meet him on his first trial, breaking into an industrial building to destroy the traces of a dangerous discovery a young mathematician has made. It turns out that certain kinds of math knowledge lead to the ability to summon demons from other universes -- the sort of thing once done with chalked pentagrams, but much more efficiently achieved with lasers instead of chalk, and with computers to keep track of the summoning rituals. It's the job of the Laundry to keep such knowledge under wraps.

But aside from the dangerous job, the Laundry is just another Dilbertian government job environment. So the first few chapters show Bob dealing with bureaucratic hassles: stupid bosses demanding silly paperwork, dumb training classes, computer problems, etc. It's all very funny stuff. He's also dealing with his crazy sometime girlfriend, and his weird roommates. Then he gets sent to California to try to pry a beautiful redheaded Irish scientist from the clutches of the US -- it seems she might be studying some dangerous stuff. But his mission turns bad when she is kidnapped by some Islamists who may have bitten off more than they can chew. Before long, Bob is posted to a more curious part of the Laundry, with a boss straight out of classic spy fiction, and it looks like they might be dealing with a secret Nazi project -- or something even scarier...

And there is a secuel called Jennifer Morgue

Good recommendation from an even better friend :))))

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