A Voice in the Wilderness
Albert Birnbaum was once one of the biggest political talk show hosts around, but these days he’s watching his career enter a death spiral. A stranger offers a solution to his woes, promising to put him back on top. It’s everything Birnbaum wants, but is there a catch? And does Birnbaum actually care if there is?
This is a cute short story with many classic Scalzi tropes, but not up to the standard of wit and wisdom long-time Scalzi readers expect. Undoubtedly necessary in the greater scheme of the series but, of itself, forgettable.
Still, a good read.
Of special note is the back and forth between Birnbaum and his assistant. The rapid fire barb ...more
So in this episode we're back on earth still with the question of "Should Earth be with the Colonial Union? Or separate from it?" and obviously people don't learn from history - whoever controls the media, controls everything.
All new characters in this short episode but all wonderful characters that were beautifully written.
Can't wait for the next episode/issue/part...
*is not in evidence.
My first thought about this, the latest story in the Old Man's War universe from John Scalzi, was annoyance that I hadn't read it whilst it was being rel ...more
Scalzi's writing remains lively and competent. He has said on his blog that this format has been exciting to him, and listed the alternation as something he particularly likes. Because of this, I've searched myself to understand why it puts me off s ...more
This installment takes us to Earth, to radio personality Al Birnbaum. As the story opens, his ratings are on a downward spiral, and he's planning a tryst with a "groupie," when he's approached by a man who calls himself Michael Washington. Washington offers increased ratings in exchange for Birnbaum's slanting his show into pro-CU ...more
This episode provides great content for the cur ...more
I was at first disturbed by the series: more than 400 different races, some with very unfriendly intents toward each other, but all at about the same technological development level and strength which makes it none really prevails? It just does not fit with my idea of technological advancement and species competition.
Anyway, I decided to forget about the imposs ...more
The problem here, which Al doesn't sufficiently appreciate, is that he has no idea who the stranger works for, or what his ultimate goal is.
Episode Four of The Human Division is set on Earth, where conspiracy theories are thriving, the ...more
This brings the recent stories to light by showing the antagonist's role in things and how they can manipulate those to their needs. I really enjoyed this one despite it being another quick read (35 minutes).
I have yet to read anything in the Old Man's War despite these short chapters within the Human Division. I'm gettin ...more
It's biggest flaw is that the main character is a radio talk show host (or a slight parody of one, depending on what you think of talk show hosts) and the political situation in the story strongly resembles our own current political situation. That was both too cute and too unrealistic to make ...more
The action in this episode takes place entirely on Earth, and as readers we are left with many more questions than answers. I feel ok about that in this medium -- it's like the lovely damsel is tied to the railroad track, and MEANWHILE, BACK AT THE RANCH...
So this episode is rabble-rousing political-social assassination, tantilizing hints, and no a ...more
This chapter leaves us with some very interesting questions: who's manipulating Earth's population's opinion of the CDF and the present state of human affairs in the galaxy? To what end? Yet another cliffhanger in a ...more
update: just noticed that scalzi has now attained every possible rating from me (5 for god engines, 4 for old man's war and last colony, 3 for ghost brigades, 2 for this one, and 1 for zoe's tale). congrads!?
Then the time comes to pay the price. One he didn't see coming.
Still, it's also (likely/obviously/probably) a necessary piece of the overall puzzle. So.
(If you want to contact John, using the mail function here is a really bad way to do it. Go to his site and use the contact information you find there.)