Cowboy Feng's Space Bar and Grill
Cowboy Feng’s Space Bar and Grille serves the best matzoh ball soup in the Galaxy, and hires some of the best musicians you’ll ever hear. It’s a great place to visit, but it tends to move around—just one step ahead of whatever mysterious conspiracy is reducing whole worlds to radioactive ash. And Cowboy Feng's may be humanity's last hope for survival.
I first read it before I knew anyth...more
Brust, as usual, is a bit overfond of letting the plot roll over the reader without a great deal of explanation. Characters often seem to know things (impo...more
Food and music are as central to the story as any of the characters. Gyros, sourdough, baby peas in vinegar. Good food is still plentiful. This is my kind of apocalypse.
I appreciate carnival and campfire tales. Give me one with music,...more
Brust says of this that it is not his best work, and I have to agree with him. It isn't bad, but the plot hook (something is attacking humanity across time and space) on which he has decided to hang his concept (the restaurant that jumps around), is too weak a scaffold, at least in the way...more
Brust has this to say about the novel: "Not one of my better efforts, I think, but...more
This is the first time I've read Steven Brust writing anything other than his assassins-and-elves Vlad Taltos series. It's, frankly, really great. Definitely better than the book's title led me to believe.
Feng's is a bar that teleports to safety to a new settlement when nuclear bombs drop. This seems like it should be a bigger plot point in the book than it is; really, after five jumps, everyone in t...more
My husband and I are at odds over the plot of Cowboy Feng's... We both love the atmosphe...more
The only correct review for this book is:
“I laughed. I cried. I fell down. It changed my life.”
The premise is pretty unique and while perhaps a stretch. And there are plot holes. But I love it. It brings together all of the things I love about Brust’s writing into one tight bundle: dialogue that is fast sharp and witty, characters with personality, a story line to unravel, and food. I d...more
Give it a chance, though, and the story goes off in a different direction. Cowboy Feng's turns out to be a pretty good, pretty clever, surprising SF action yarn. It's a quick, fun read.
But fear also drives greed. Fear can become a religion, especially when junk science is involved. Fear can make some feel superior to the majority.
Facing your fears, overcoming them... that is what this book is about.
I was re...more
Turns out all I remembered was a couple of plot twists from the last twenty pages or so. So I basically read this from scratch, but knew how it was going to end.
All said, I liked it, but didn't love it. I don't regret reading it, but I won't be pressing it into your hands either.
(Unless you LOVE Irish Folk music. If you...more
However, I doubt many readers will make it through the first hundred or so pages where nothing happens. Well, the characters hang out in the bar and grill, drink, smoke, play Irish music, and obsess about their love lives. The dour first person narration by “Billy” does nothing to develop the characters; they are just a list of names and whis...more
Overall, a very good book (Brust is a superb author, and has fun and bold writing styles) and well worth a read if you're in the mood for something a little wacky.
So, almost? But no, this one wasn't for me.
I'm not a sci-fi purist so I can't tell you if his time travel plot is derivative or implausible or whatever. But it worked for me. And even better is that it set up a situation where the heroics really were heroic. And they hurt.
So can a small group of people who call the bar "home" save the human race? Only if they can find out who keeps nuking planets and why?
(Photo by David Dyer-Bennet)