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Green Eyes

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  328 ratings  ·  24 reviews
A carnival worker dead of alcohol poisoning, Donnell Harrison has been reborn with new memories and a profound literary talent. To reconnect him to the world and make him pliant, the reanimation team employs Jocundra Verret, a therapist who has gained the trust of numerous subjects, but when Donnell finds his latent power to control energy, Jocundra shares his doubts about ...more
Paperback, 275 pages
Published 1984 by Millenium
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Average rating 3.69  · 
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 ·  328 ratings  ·  24 reviews

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Sep 12, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recently found this book again after 30 years. The first time I read it was about the time my youngest boy was born, 1984. I bought several new paperbacks by Ace. They were some sort of special edition & looked pretty cool together with great teasers. One was Neuromancer by William Gibson & this was the other that I still remember. Somewhere along the way I lost this one, though. It's great to get another chance to read it.

Well, I see why Neuromancer survived the purges of the past 3 decades &
Shepard shows incredible talent even on his first novel. Matching Robert Stone’s terrific dialogue and ability to make any situation pregnant with threat and meaning, a metatextual weaving in of a Jack Vance grotesque fantasy, and main story involving zombies, science, magic, a bizarre labyrinth of a house(almost as weird as the castle in The Golden), voodoo, and sense overloading description of Louisiana bayou country. There are fully formed characters that will linger in your brain, unbeatable ...more
Apr 20, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: horror-gothic
If you’re the kind of person who likes a good zombie love story (and let’s face it, who doesn’t?) then I highly recommend Lucius Shepard’s novel Green Eyes. These are definitely not the kind of zombies you find in most horror movies. This is a story with a definite science fiction slant to it. It’s very emphatically not a gorefest. As always with Lucius Shepard it’s beautifully written, highly original, intelligent and very entertaining. Not his best book, but it was first novel and as first nov ...more
Jan 08, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: hip-noir
Well, it's the first (and maybe only, ever) Lacanian zombie biopunk Louisiana bayou love story. Well written, eerie and melancholy more than terrifying, and, well...a Lacanian zombie tale. (And, no, there's no least in the usual way) Isn't that enough to make you want to read this?
Jan 01, 2015 rated it did not like it
I didn't finish it. It's extremely rare that I don't at least get through a book even if I didn't like it all that well, but this never held my interest and then got really annoying really fast. What's interesting is that when I got to the carnival scene I realized I was reading Stranger in a Strange Land again and the last book I didn't finish was Farnham's Freehold -- another book that features shallow characters, muddled motivations, great plot that draws you in only to be left as background ...more
??? 80s: i had not put this on! i read this when it came out, so thirty-three years ago... review by memory: really liked the first half, really disappointed in the second half, that is, the strange half-life and titular green eyes is absorbing in a surreal way, could have been the book in itself... but then he created an entire other world to make it make sense... i preferred it to remain unexplained and weird. oh well...
May 29, 2013 rated it liked it
Hmmmm. This is a very interesting work, one of the few that transcends the dialectic of traditional narrative and post/modern experimentalism. If this actually were a "zombie" novel it would be the best one ever written, but the zombie conceit is incidental to the work, used as a wedge with which to introduce the Louisiana milieu in all of its miscegenated glory.
This would be a nice companion piece, although far superior, to the Angel Heart film of Mickey Rourke. It depicts a world of faith he
Dec 29, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
A reclusive research project is experimenting with a strain of bacteria that re-animates the recently dead. Each zombie is assigned a therapist, who is encouraged to use subtle sexual attraction to manipulate their subject to normal functionality. But zombie Donnell Harrison and his therapist Jocundra, disgusted by the behaviors of the sleazy researchers, slowly acknowledge the growth of a real relationship and escape to the nearby Louisiana bayou country. I don't read much horror, and am not su ...more
Aaron Bellamy
Green Eyes (2.75 stars) has a lot of problems: it’s over-written, the female characters are underdeveloped (though better developed than in other Shepard outings I’ve read), the themes and narratives are all over the place, and yet, at some level, it still captivates. There are glimpses here into some of the amazing writing Shepard would put out later in his career, but also examples of the pitfalls that would continue to plague him.

The presumption that this is ultimately a zombie story is fals
Apr 01, 2018 rated it did not like it
This was a stinker of a first novel. Lucius later wrote some of the best short fiction of his era, but Green Eyes' style is like a really bad Victorian novelist with turrets syndrome: overly-written, endlessly introspective, meaninglessly dense.
Brian S
Jul 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
OVERALL RATING: 4 stars (8 out of 10)
Plot: 3 stars
Pacing: 4 stars
Writing Style/Quality: 5 stars
Characterization: 4 stars
World Building: 4 stars
Mar 09, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Extremely hard to follow, but an interesting scientific look into how zombies might work (voodoo zombies, not movie zombies, which are actually ghouls).
Mar 03, 2009 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ben Thurley
Jul 19, 2014 rated it liked it
There's no way to write a review of this novel – Lucius Shepard's first – which don't make it sound silly. Which it isn't. Entirely.

Sure, the story begins in a secret lab in Louisiana's bayou country, with the recently deceased being restored to life, only to be manipulated (to who knows what end?) through strange therapies of obsession and attraction. And when one of the "zombies", Harrison Donnell, along with his therapist, Jocundra Verrett, breaks out of the facility, the story fractures out
Noah M.
Oct 21, 2010 rated it it was ok
Lucius Shepard has a real problem with length. Once his works get over about 70 pages he tends to just lapse in to meaningless and rich descriptions of settings and internal mental states... In Green Eyes, the first 150 pages or so was a nicely told, richly written gothic tale of zombies, true love, and going all Bonnie & Clyde in Louisiana.

Sadly, once we need to start moving in to a third act we just fall off the deep end...turns out, the green bacteria that brought him back to life are channel
Gerry Watt
Mar 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014
This book started so well with a plot that seemed right up my street. Scientists and psychologists of questionable morality and integrity are reanimating the dead and discovering the Z-words have memories of past lives they never had and may have precognitive or other enhanced brain functions as a result of the reanimation process. This is all accompanied by the promise of Bad Things on the horizon.

This all goes to pot once one of the Zs decides to escape the project and the whole thing veers al
I think I would have liked this more if I had not already read "A Handbook of American Prayer." Both characters are about ambiguous poets with near divine powers with a beautiful woman in their lives who is deeply connected to a regional culture in a warm part of the United States. Green Eyes, however, is Shepard's first book and is not as well written as the novel he wrote twenty years later.

The first half of the book was fun; the last couple chapters were a slog.
Sep 06, 2007 rated it liked it
I think it was AuntiePam who called this "a zombie love story" - got a bit complicated at the end, but was a good read. It didn't knock my socks off, but it kept my attention. Stephen King fans might enjoy this.
Feb 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
Another reread from 1984. Definitely a good one, thought-provoking and different, and I liked the ending.
May 18, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Once again a great concept and a smashing opening section founders in the back stretch.
Sep 10, 2010 marked it as to-read
Shelves: horror-etc

*note to self. Copy from A.
Jun 28, 2012 rated it it was ok
read this one day while laying in bed sick. don't really remember it to be honest with you.
Thomas Baughman
Genre-fiction, but well worth reading. Shepard can flat-out write.
Valterz Valter
rated it it was amazing
May 23, 2015
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Apr 08, 2013
rated it it was amazing
Nov 03, 2007
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Jul 07, 2020
Jon Y.
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Sep 08, 2010
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Jul 21, 2012
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Brief biographies are, like history texts, too organized to be other than orderly misrepresentations of the truth. So when it's written that Lucius Shepard was born in August of 1947 to Lucy and William Shepard in Lynchburg, Virginia, and raised thereafter in Daytona Beach, Florida, it provides a statistical hit and gives you nothing of the difficult childhood from which he frequently attempted to ...more

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