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Mad Scientess Jane Expat

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Microlit, or perhaps that should be micropop. [20060722|16:03]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat
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I think it's time for some fresh microlit summaries based on my recent reading.

Tim Powers: On Stranger Tides, The Drawing of the Dark, The Anubis Gates

Protagonist: Hello. I'm a battle-scarred, middle-aged bachelor, and I'm going to save the world in a painstakingly researched setting using a combination of luck, wit and magic.
Antagonists: Okay, but first we get to beat the crap out of you, kill your friends and steal your women.
Protagonist: Well, shit. All right.

George Alec Effinger: When Gravity Fails
Marid Audran: I'm a low-life street thug in an unnamed, breathtakingly illustrated North African locale. But at least I have my freedom.
Friedlander Bey: Marid, your friends are all getting killed in nasty ways. I own this town. You're going to find out who's doing this and stop them. In return, I'll make you rich. Also, I'm going to take away your freedom.
Marid Audran: Dammit.

George Alec Effinger: A Fire in the Sun
Marid Audran: I solved the murders and I'm rich. I also lost my freedom. But at least I have my friends.
Marid Audran's friends: Piss off, sellout.
Friedlander Bey: All that remains is for me to make you into a properly devout Muslim.
Marid Audran: DAMMIT!

Nick Hornby, A Long Way Down
Four protagonists: Life sucks. Think I'll jump off this building. Wait, why are you here?
Desperate man: *jumps*
Four protagonists: On the other hand, anyone fancy a cup of tea?

Add your own.

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[User Picture]From: nanila
2006-07-23 16:01 (UTC)
Yeah, he's kind of like a gamer who always role-plays the same neutral-good fighter. My favorite book was probably On Stranger Tides, but I may have been influenced by the copious amounts of swashbuckling.
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[User Picture]From: chibaraki
2006-07-22 18:45 (UTC)
Re: Tim Powers --

You forgot the Arthurian legend. But otherwise, yes. ...also I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks Tim Powers only writes one book.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2006-07-23 15:33 (UTC)
But the elaborately constructed settings! You gotta give some props for the elaborately constructed settings. Especially the one that's piratical (On Stranger Tides).

Oh, all right. How about this, then.

Arthur: Hello. I'm a battle-scarred, middle-aged king/god, and I'm going to save the world in a historical/mythological setting using a combination of luck, wit, magic and a pointy sword.
Saxons or whoever: Okay, but first we get to beat the crap out of you, kill your knights and steal Guinevere.
Arthur: Well, shit. All right.
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[User Picture]From: chibaraki
2006-07-23 15:46 (UTC)
Well the plus side is that while Tim Powers only has one book, it's a pretty good book, so I don't mind that much. And I haven't read On Stranger Tides. Maybe I should! But... yeah, the three books of his I've read? Are all HEY LOOK KING ARTHUR for... reasons I've never really been able to fathom.

But The Drawing of the Dark is about beer. How can you argue with that?
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[User Picture]From: minirth
2006-07-22 19:15 (UTC)

THe last one kills me. I LOVE IT! The book couldn't be half has good!
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2006-07-23 15:57 (UTC)
The book has its moments. There's one bit at the start, where the first three are up on the roof of this building in London, not throwing themselves off, and the fourth protagonist joins them, and he happens to be a pizza delivery guy. The incident is told from the point of view of the middle-aged English lady, and her description had me rolling.

I'd never met an American before, I don't think. I wasn't at all sure he was one, either, until the others said something. You don't expect Americans to be delivering pizzas, do you? Well, I don't, but perhaps I'm just out of touch. I don't order pizzas very often, but every time I have, they've been delivered by someone who doesn't speak English. Americans don't deliver things, do they? Or serve you in shops, or take your money on the bus. I suppose they must do in America, but they don't here. Indians and West Indians, and lots of Australians in the hospital where they see Matty [her son], but no Americans.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2006-07-23 16:04 (UTC)
Also, thanks! It was just so very, very English. I couldn't resist.
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[User Picture]From: behsharam
2006-07-24 18:34 (UTC)
These are brilliant. I don't have any to add at this point (I've been reading essays and Aristotle) but I will post some of my own when I can.

*massive internet hugs*
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