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Preview — The Half-Made World by Felix Gilman
The Half-Made World (The Half-Made World #1)
The world is only half made. What exists has been carved out amidst a war between two rival factions: the Line, paving the world with industry and claiming its residents as slaves; and the Gun, a cult of terror and violence that crippl...more
The author takes the American West and plops it into a fictional world, with several warring factions fighting over the future of the country, none all the way black or white. The complexity of the world and characters was so engrossing, similar...more
The Half-Made World gets a solid 3 stars – it falls between 3.5 and 4 but I can’t quite bring myself to give it the coveted fourth star.
When I first read the blurbs for the book I was immediately reminded of the opening scene in Michael Moorcock’s The Weird of t...more
I can't even place it in a genre. Steampunk with magic realism? Dystopian? Or fantasy? A Western? All of those. Clang clang go the Engines of The Line. Devouring the land into gray. The Guns embody their Agents to war with the Line, but they are dem...more
The novel starts with an excellent prologue, where The General, who is losing his mind, tries desperately to cling to anyt...more
Half the fun of this book is not knowing where the plot is going and figuring out what’s going on in the worl...more
The Half-Made World gives snapshots of extensive world building but when all is said and done, I don't feel that I understand the world at all. I still don't understand the motives of the Gun and the Line and I don't even have a vague idea about what the Gun does beside oppose the Line. I can tell that Gilman knows...more
The world is divided between the settled East and the expanding into uncreation West. Some centuries ago the seemingly impassable mountains that formed the border of the settled world, opened and people started settling the lands beyond and in the process fixing them into reality.
However un-natural or supernatural things sprung out here and there, most...more
The setting of The Half-Made World starts out exciting and fresh, with its mix of cursed gunslingers carrying demon-haunted guns, and the grim, Nazi-like servant armies of steampunk sentient Engines. There's also the promise of an u...more
The Half-Made World is set in an alternate America, but Gilman has gone well past the add-a-few-inventions-that-weren’t-there-and-change-the-Civil-War kind of alternate world-building here. We have an old, established East (w...more
The Half-Made World is a steampunk Western with some helpings of magic, set in an alternate world where the land is still half-made, where reality disintegrates at the frontier. It's a wonderful fantastical stand-in for a Western, depicting a world at war caught between two inexorable factions: Gun and Line.
Gun is the spirit of t...more
The positives: the writing is solid - in particular, the descriptions of the Half Made portions of the world are cool, since the laws of physics and nature haven't been completely sorted out. The prologue was quite gripping (almost deceptively so - I feel like I was tricked...more
It has much of what one seeks in good fantasy or sci fi. There is a strong cast of characters. They're gritty, naive, willful, brave, foolhardy and any number of other highly readable traits. The world building is spectacular. It grounds itself with many if our notions on what the old west was like, then adds a technological twist, and a supernatural twist, and a little bit of the weird for good measure. The book is dark at times, but ever...more
The only part I am unclear on - is this supposed to be a standalone? If so, the author makes a really good job of building a unique world...more
A recovered letter reveals that the former General of the failed Red Republic may still be alive. Warring factions–the Line and the Gun–seek to find this General, who has knowledge of a world-changing weapon. Of course, since a noise bomb likely wiped that knowledge from the General, finding him would merely be the first step.
Leading the quest for the cultish Gun is Creedmoor, an agent who, despite multiple near-death experiences, refuses to die or quit....more
The story takes place on a vaguely familiar North American continent that is metamorphosing out of elemental chaos simultaneously with a 19th Century-like industrial revolution and westward expansion. A very interesting concept considering that...more
Thirty years ago, The General built the Red Valley Republic. At this time the world was lush with trees and grass. The world was evolving. Flash forward to present day. The world is desolate…thanks to the battle between the Lines and the rebel Guns. The Lines are focused on industry and spreading it across the world as quickly as possible. The Guns are the bandits of the world. They fight not with words but with weapons and violence.
Liv Alverhuysen is a doctor of Psychology. D...more
The story: There has been an on-going war between the Guns and the Lines. The Guns wield - well, you can probably guess what - demon possessed guns. The soldiers also possess supernatural abilities, i.e. receive communiqués in the form of orders from demons. These demons rely on humans to carry on, they give the demons life. Then there are the Lines that use sentient engines.
These battling foes converge at...more