Courtney's Reviews > Gather, Darkness!

Gather, Darkness! by Fritz Leiber
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Jul 12, 08

Read in July, 2008

In it's favor: this book is short, imaginative and oddly compelling.

The downside: Like many sci fi writers of the 1950s, Fritz Leiber has a limited view of the value of women in society. His views of men aren't much better. Maybe it's just that he doesn't know how to develop character? Actually, there's a lot about the structure of this novel that is eye-rollingly silly.

"Gather, Darkness!" is a sci fi novel about a dictatorial regime of atheists who keep the common people oppressed, modeling their feudal society on the Dark Ages. Then witches bands together to wreak havoc on the oppressive hierarchy.

If I were in a deeper mood when I read this, I might have read a very 1950s-specific political message in "Gather, Darkness!" I mean, an elite tier of oppressive atheist dictators lead an oppressed populace ... hmmm, wonder who they could represent? But the morality and the political overtones of this book are a bit too simple to deserve much deep thought.

It's better as candy than as philosophy. Strange, oddly compelling, a good antidote to my literary malaise. I kept turning the pages all the way to the end.
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