Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Book — Glasshouse by Charles Stross

What I read:- Charlie Stross' new novel

What I expected:- Accelerando, part 2

What I got:- I love Lucy


What the blurb doesn't tell you is that the "unique experimental polity, the Glasshouse" intended to "simulate a pre-accelerated culture" is a fairly crass -- presumably satirically intended -- pseudo mid/late 20th Century environment, living in which becomes a source of terror to superior post-Acceleration folk.

Stross is an infuriating writer at times. It's bad enough that he always lards his cascades of ideas with a heavy doses of what in fanfic circles would be called "Lime" -- I find coy not-quite-smut vastly more annoying than the outright, no apologies stuff. But this -- well, I was just getting settled into the plot and looking forwards to something inventive as the Glasshouse and then ran into this. Not so much a brick wall, as a quagmire, in that momentum carried me in a chapter or two. But then I put it down, and I don't know that I'll pick it up.

In sum -- if I wanted to read social satire on the 1950s in SF, I'd go back to stuff from the heyday of Galaxy. Sorry, Charlie.

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