The Evolution of Science Fiction discussion

Gene Wolfe
This topic is about Gene Wolfe
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message 1: by Buck (new)

Buck (spectru) | 899 comments I recommended, through Overdrive, that my library acquire Shadow & Claw. They got it and notified me that I have borrowed it. So I have two weeks to read it after I finish the book that's now on my Kindle. It's actually the first two books in a tetralogy, The Book of the New Sun, consisting of The Shadow of the Torturer and The Claw of the Conciliator

I've only read one other Gene Wolfe book, The Fifth Head of Cerberus. It was quite good, literary.

I read that he has been nominated for the Hugo several times but has not won it. I wonder if anyone here has read much Gene Wolfe, and what you think of The Book of the New Sun that I am about to start, or of any of his other books.


message 2: by Jim (new)

Jim (jimmaclachlan) | 4281 comments Mod
I started reading The Shadow of the Torturer a couple of times & even tried it in audio a year ago for a group read. Didn't like it. Never finished it. It wasn't the writing, although not much happens very fast, but just the idea & world that I found disgusting & depressing. Just not a place I wanted to be. I hope your mileage varies greatly.


message 3: by Oleksandr (new)

Oleksandr Zholud | 975 comments I've only read several stories by him, but wasn't impressed. At the same time, I've heard a lot of praise, so I still plan to give him another try


message 4: by Ed (new)

Ed Erwin | 2102 comments Mod
Buck wrote: "I recommended, through Overdrive, that my library acquire Shadow & Claw...."

It is complex and tricky. Unreliable narrator, time travel loops, nothing is as simple as it seems to be, the real story is only hinted at.

That being said, I enjoyed the first book very much, not realizing what a maze of mirrors it was going to turn into later. I somewhat enjoyed the rest of it, though I didn't try very hard to untangle the puzzle.

As I was reading book 3 in public, some guy saw it and gave me a thumbs-up signal. That hasn't happened with any other book I've read. So, reading this might make you a cool kid, if you aren't one already.


message 5: by Ed (new)

Ed Erwin | 2102 comments Mod
I even tried reading Solar Labyrinth: Exploring Gene Wolfe's Book of the New Sun in the hopes that it would shed some light on the story. It did, a little. But unfortunately it raises many more questions than it answers.

I do hope to read something else by Wolfe at some point. But I will try to choose carefully. Complexity in a novel can be amazing (as "Ulysses") or too much trouble to be worth it (as "Finnegans Wake") or a bit of both (as "Lolita").


message 6: by Buck (new)

Buck (spectru) | 899 comments Ed wrote: "So, reading this might make you a cool kid, if you aren't one already. "

Cool. Yes, of course. Kid? not so much


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