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The Claus Effect

3.54 of 5 stars 3.54  ·  rating details  ·  13 ratings  ·  5 reviews
"The Claus Effect" is a continuation of "The Toy Mill," the 1993 Aurora-Award-winning story about a malevolent, post-industrial-revolution Santa Claus and Emily, the little girl whose wish to be a Christmas Elf nearly destroys the world. The Claus Effect takes up eights years later, when events propel teen-aged Emily and West Point cadet Neil Nyman on a breakneck journey t ...more
Paperback, 241 pages
Published November 27th 2002 by EDGE Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing, Inc.
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This book is very different; dark, absurd, skewed humour, Santa Claus run amok.
Tis the season for action/adventure horror!This very weird take on the Claus etc. seemed to me to be inspired by an Invader Zim and/or a Furama holiday cartoon... but that's OK, because it's done pretty well. What sets this tale apart is the action/adventure aspects, particularly with the garnishes of international intrigue.

The Claus was very creepy indeed, as was his long-time nemesis. The elfs, too, were nasty little pieces of work, and ubiquitous as ants. The heroine and hero were brave and s
The Claus Effect started as a short story, "The Toy Mill", which won an Aurora Award in 1993. The award was well deserved. Tightly written and a clever concept, "The Toy Mill" tells the story of Emily, a little girl who wishes to become a Christmas Elf. she meets Santa on Christmas Eve, and he decides to grant her wish, sprinkling magic powder on her and taking her to the North Pole. While she's there, Emily discovers Santa isn't the kind soul from the stories, and the workshop is far from the j ...more
Jul 19, 2010 Lucas rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: sf
Even though the book is only about 240 pages long, the middle third of it is unnecessary and repetitive action sequences. They are meant to be humorous, but the jokes involving gun battles with Santa's elves are exhausted early on. The writing style of the action was off-putting, I would lose interest and skim over it sometimes. Maybe it was meant to parody pulp writing found in military themed serial novels, but things like always referring to a gun by its brand name irritated me.

Michael Healy
A brilliantly dark look at the ugly sides of humanity at the holiday. Possibly a little dated by it's early 90s setting but the themes and ideals still ring true. All underscored by a prose voice unafraid of dark humour among some genuine terror.
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David Nickle is the author of several novels and numerous short stories. His latest novel, The 'Geisters, is available from ChiZine Publications. His novel Eutopia: A Novel of Terrible Optimism was a finalist for the Aurora Award, the Sunburst Award and the Compton Crook Award. His story collection Monstrous Affections won the 2009 Black Quill Reader's Choice Award. He's a past winner of the Bram ...more
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