Tag Archives: dystopia

Neverwhere – Neil Gaiman

Since I enjoyed American Gods so much, I put another Gaiman book on the list (and yes, I am following @neilhimself on Twitter).

I liked this one. Not loved it, but liked it. I think he has a very, very specific writing style, that if you aren’t really in the mood for it, can be annoying.

The synopsis from BN.com

Neil Gaiman, the genius behind “The Sandman” graphic novels — which Norman Mailer called “a comic strip for intellectuals” — delves into novel-length fiction with Neverwhere, a wild and mesmerizing story set in a bizarre and chilling underground London. Neverwhere begins innocently enough: It’s the story of Richard Mayhew, a plain man with a good heart. Unhappy in love and in life, Richard is thrust into a dark and evil world when he stops to help a young girl he finds bleeding in the street. Now Richard has much more than work and girlfriend dilemmas on his mind — now he’s wanted by two very evil, powerful, and nasty mercenaries who like to think that they are, in fact, rather gentlemanly.

I think I just have read a lot of dystopian, homeless, otherworld type books – so this kind of lost it’s “wow” factor for me. And speaking of otherworld, I did this weekend-long LARP-type thing a year or so ago, called … Otherworld. And it was awesome and all that jazz, but it’s funny because the more popular sci-fi/fantasy writers I read, the more and more I see references to certain characters in nerd events in my past.  In a way, it’s cool because I can “see” the characters very clearly in my mind’s eye.

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Unwind – Neal Shusterman

Wow – what a great book. The premise? Sometime in the near future of America. We have had another Civil War, this time over abortion. The deal that both sides struck is that while life begins at conception, parents could choose to retroactively abort a child from the ages of 13-18 by “unwinding” them. This means that they give them to the state to carve up and use as a donor – all body parts must be used – this way the person continues “living” in other people. Really freaky stuff. Of course, a few wild kids escape, find an Underground Railroad and try to stay alive.

It’s dystopian, its YA, it’s thought-provoking and its well-written. What else can you ask for?

(The other novel that I read of his – “Neverlost” was also excellent, but the end kind of petered out for me. I look forward to reading other stuff of his. His website – http://www.storyman.com/)

Update: Just found a NY Time review that speaks to the book more eloquently that I eked out. Link here!

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