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06 September 2010
Manic Monday: The Chrysalids by John Wyndham
Each Monday (or the closest I can get to Monday) I will be posting a Past/Present/Future Reading Post called Manic Monday. Don't hate me if I post it on a Tuesday - it just indicates how "manic" my Monday really was! If you want to see more of what I have been reading, I try and update my Goodreads account with each book I am reading.
What I just finished reading
Soulless by Gail Carriger
Blurb from Goodreads:
Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations. First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.
Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire -- and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.
With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?
Why I picked it up: Gail Carriger writes steampunk UF/PnR and my twitter friends urged me to read the novels. They were right.
Why I finished it: They were right.
I'd give it to: People who like some supernatural in their period dramas.
What I am reading now
The Chrysalids by John Wyndham
Blurb from Goodreads:
The Chrysalids is set in the future after a devastating global nuclear war. David, the young hero of the novel, lives in a tight-knit community of religious and genetic fundamentalists, who exist in a state of constant alert for any deviation from what they perceive as the norm of God's creation, deviations broadly classified as 'offenses' and 'blasphemies.' Offenses consist of plants and animals that are in any way unusual, and these are publicly burned to the accompaniment of the singing of hymns. Blasphemies are human beings; ones who show any sign of abnormality, however trivial. They are banished from human society, cast out to live in the wild country where, as the authorities say, nothing is reliable and the devil does his work. David grows up surrounded by admonitions: KEEP PURE THE STOCK OF THE LORD; WATCH THOU FOR THE MUTANT. At first he hardly questions them, though he is shocked when his sternly pious father and rigidly compliant mother force his aunt to forsake her baby. It is a while before he realizes that he too is out of the ordinary, in possession of a power that could doom him to death or introduce him to a new, hitherto-unimagined world of freedom. The Chrysalids is a perfectly conceived and constructed work from the classic era of science fiction. It is a Voltairean philosophical tale that has as much resonance in our own day, when genetic and religious fundamentalism are both on the march, as when it was written during the Cold War.
What I am reading next
I am still plugging away at Jack Kerouac's On The Road, when I am not distracted by anything else. I can't afford to buy new books until next week, so I will either be finishing On The Road or pick up something else from my bookstacks.