The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles from around the web.
Jacob Wesiman, Lavie Tidhar (photo:Kevin Nixon. © Future Publishing 2013), and Patricia A. McKillip (Wikimedia Commons)
Well, if that ever happened, and I suspect it hasn’t done for a number of decades, there’s enough proof in INVADERS to demonstrate that science fiction and fantasy are now so prevalent that an author doesn’t need to be steeped in genre from the age of thirteen in order to write good genre. which is not say every story in Invaders works, either as lit fic or as genre fic. But the anthology sets out to prove a point, and it does that pretty well.
Why am I waiting on this book?
The descriptions of the short stories mentioned in the synopsis sound good. And then there is a blurb that writer/poet Jane Yolen did for the book: “I love Patricia McKillip’s novels, but even more, I am passionate about her brilliant short stories.“ I respect Jane Yolen’s opinion. I’m looking forward to the variety that a collection of short stories brings along with quality writing.
The richness of description in the book is almost overwhelming. It perfectly captures the outskirts of a bustling city, where people do what they have to do to get by, where communities are tight-knit and everyone has a past. And overlaid on top of all of it is the Conversation, the digital noise of an entire world—worlds, even, as humanity has spread to the moon and Mars and beyond.
Machines and humans and machine-humans all exist together, but it’s a messy existence. And Lavie Tidhar plunges you right into the middle of it with details so vivid you can taste the air in Tel Aviv.
The real beauty of CENTRAL STATION is not in how different it is from the present, but how similar. It paints a picture of a future where we have more, but problems aren’t solved and questions aren’t answered. New technology has only given us new ways to experience the same old struggles. To me, the true message of CENTRAL STATION is that humans never change, even as they become less human.
The one weakness is that CENTRAL STATION tries to be too much all at once. It’s a story about humanity itself, about love, war, mortality, culture, poverty, faith, prejudice, family… It gets weighed down by its own commentary, as though checking items off a “human condition” checklist. Strangely, though, this overwhelming torrent of social discussion almost works in its favor. “Too much all at once” is a sensation the denizens of Tidhar’s future are very used to.Everything about CENTRAL STATION is busy, and it’s meant to be so.
I will admit, too, that while I enjoyed the read, the ending was a touch unsatisfying. Regardless, I stand by my 5-star review. Its flaws are part of what makes it perfect, and looking back, I’m not even sure if they’re flaws at all but intentional, carefully implemented imperfections.
CARABAS recommends the book as well.
Keeping it indie and we spotted that Lavie Tidhar has a little something coming through from Tachyon Publishers: CENTRAL STATION. Having had two slipstream literary successes with alternate reality depictions of real world leaders (Osama (bin Laden) and A Man Lies Dreaming (Hitler) this is pure SF with a guy called Boris returning to Tel Aviv from Mars and life at the bottom of a space elevator. This happens to involve a child who can intercept the mind’s datastream by touch, a cousin with a cyborg fetish and a data-vampire on the run…
For more information about INVADERS: 22 TALES FROM THE OUTER LIMITS OF LITERATURE, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by Goro Fujita
Design by Elizabeth Story
For more info on DREAMS OF DISTANT SHORES, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by Thomas Canty
For more info about CENTRAL STATION, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by Sarah Anne Langton