Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Reading is Fun for Mentals.

I just finished Player Piano, by Kurt Vonnegut. It's interesting, though definitely not his best. Long on theme, short on plot & characters. It's a social sci-fi novel, sort of a hybrid between Fahrenheit 451, (that's the classic novel by Ray Bradbury, NOT the full-of-shit propaganda film Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore,) and the bleaker bits of Atlas Shrugged. A man vs. society conflict- a society where mechanizaton has made human beings worthless. A little hard to get into, but a decent read with some deep insights into humanity.

I've also recently re-read Alfred Bester's The Stars, My Destination (or Tiger Tiger, if you're in Europe. It's the "Philosopher's Stone" vs. "The Sorcerer's Stone" thing. Everyone knows we Americans won't buy anything with a title that takes intelligence to understand.) This is one of my favorites- sort of a Count of Monte Cristo in space. It's the tale of a dead-end lowlife who (through an obsession for revenge) unlocks the potential he's been wasting & transcends himself. A little thin in places, but peppered with Bester's imaginative ideas which are thought through to their full social consequences.

Anyway, I'm back to Vonnegut with Breakfast of Champions. Yummy.


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