Saturday, February 27, 2010

Science Fiction Week

It's Science Fiction Week.

That's what I'm calling it. It's been a while since I've had the luxury of reading SF. And what better time of year for it? There are 10 inches of snow out there, you've been jumping over humps of snow at corners all winter, and you may have had a crying jag looking at snow at the Olympics.

And a luxury SF is. Get psyched for the big event. All those paperbacks and book club editions you've collected at sales can finally be brought into play. Read a few pages of Isaac Asimov's Foundation trilogy: has it stood the test of time? How about that Peter S. Beagle novel you've been meaning to read since you cackled at and were sympathetic with Lila the Werewolf? Isn't Clifford A. Simac one of the greatest American SF writers ever? Maybe you'll try The Death of Grass by John Christopher. Much recommended in Britain, but I don't actually have it, and it costs a fortune at Amazon.

Obviously, you won't have time to read them all--it's only a week, which might mean you can read a book, maybe two if they're slim.

I've begun reading my first SF book of the week, Kit Whitfield's In Great Water, a beautifully written novel about vicious mermaids and besieged human beings, or deepsmen and landsmen, in a Venice of some alternative history. After the deepsmen attack the landsmen again and again, the landsmen make a treaty involving the intermarriage of the races. Which leads to problems after a while. But the novel starts in medias res, with the abandonment of a weak child by his mermaid mother.

PREPARATIONS FOR SF WEEK: I got a geek haircut so I wouldn't cheat, rush around outdoors, or go back to the classics. It's better to have an SF haircut than Spock ears. This is the haircut, frozen into some psychedelic software that does give it a bit of an SF feeling. Four heads with identical haircuts, against a scene of leafy wallpaper. I don't know how I got four heads. Four heads, zero choices.


Buried In Print said...

I'll be interested to hear about your reading experience of this one: I read her Benighted a couple of summers ago and thought she raised some fascinating issues, whilst presenting a wholly entertaining story.

Frisbee said...

I like it so far. It's an SF historical novel, if there is such a thing, with the history invented. She's a very good stylist.