The Incomparable

151: Not Technically Incest


  this episode of the uncomfortable is [TS]

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  find audio books online go to audible [TS] slash and comfortable to [TS]

  learn [TS]

  the incomparable number 151 july 2013 [TS]

  welcome back to be uncomfortable this is [TS]

  a an episode that I'd like to say i look [TS]

  forward to for most of the year but i [TS]

  think the most accurate thing is that it [TS]

  takes me several months to prepare for [TS]

  this episode because this is the episode [TS]

  where we read and comment on the [TS]

  nominees for the hugo award for best [TS]

  novel and there are five nominees every [TS]

  year which means some of us read all 5 [TS]

  some of us read are not gluttons for [TS]

  punishment only read some of the five [TS]

  books that are nominated for for the [TS]

  human award for best novel representing [TS]

  the best in science fiction and fantasy [TS]

  and related jon renau long-form fiction [TS]

  for the year so we did it again we've [TS]

  done this the last couple of years and [TS]

  we're back so joining me on this journey [TS]

  to read novels that were nominated for [TS]

  awards bye-bye fans are my guest dan [TS]

  morgan hi dan welcome back i Jes and [TS]

  I've read by my calculations 3.73 of [TS]

  these novels [TS]

  alright fair enough we'll get into that [TS]

  in more detail in a bit [TS]

  Glenn Fleischman is also here Glenn good [TS]

  to have you back on his delight to be [TS]

  here and I believe I've read about 4.3 [TS]

  of the novels which is my highest score [TS]

  ever in these episodes [TS]

  wow there's some serious bragging going [TS]

  on Monty actually is also here Monty at [TS]

  one point opted out because we were [TS]

  going to record this a couple weeks ago [TS]

  and then we didn't want he said just [TS]

  wait i will read them how many did you [TS]

  read Monty i read three of them and i [TS]

  liked about one in three quarters haha [TS]

  alright and Scott McNulty my partner in [TS]

  crime who who tends to read all 5 I [TS]

  assume you read all five right Scott I i [TS]

  have read all 5 much like you but i have [TS]

  read all 5 all the way through every [TS]

  bitter bitter age do you know there were [TS]

  some pretty bad and I want to argue that [TS]

  these represent the best in science [TS]

  fiction and fantasy of the year because [TS]

  we do you want to argue for or us [TS]

  I'm arguing again [TS]

  let's see hey I have a meta argument i [TS]

  want to discuss later about that nature [TS]

  of what is the best but we can talk [TS]

  about that later [TS]

  alright let's go through the books first [TS]

  and then maybe we can get meta at the [TS]

  end i also have a6 book that i'm going [TS]

  to mention what I mean nominated for a [TS]

  nebula warden is very good much better [TS]

  than any of these books actually and [TS]

  Scott agrees with me I i know in advance [TS]

  because he's been raving about it or he [TS]

  agrees somewhat with me [TS]

  so what this is but yes just increase [TS]

  your heat i read a book from last year I [TS]

  like I don't think that this is my [TS]

  editing method with the incomparable is [TS]

  that I declare things to be fact if [TS]

  there later proven wrong i remove all [TS]

  traces of my decoration and they're [TS]

  clever i am never wrong [TS]

  alright so we should start with the two [TS]

  books that we've covered previously [TS]

  showing that we do have a nose for [TS]

  nominal works of some of some kind of [TS]

  two of these books we've done episodes [TS]

  about already haha [TS]

  john scalzi is booked redshirts was [TS]

  covered in detail in episode 201 of the [TS]

  incomparable titled insular nervous fear [TS]

  where we talked about his a very [TS]

  interesting kind of meta discussion of [TS]

  red shirts on a spaceship that is [TS]

  remarkably like the USS enterprise which [TS]

  turns out is actually inside a TV show [TS]

  and that's why the plots that their [TS]

  lives are revolving around make very [TS]

  little sense so we talked about this a [TS]

  little bit uh Glen and Scot were on that [TS]

  show dan and Monty I have you both red [TS]

  red shirts i have all right so why don't [TS]

  you guys let's start with Monty tell me [TS]

  tell me what you thought of Richard's I [TS]

  liked the middle part at the beginning I [TS]

  thought the middle part where they [TS]

  realize they were in a TV show and went [TS]

  to earth where the TV show is being [TS]

  produced that yes that at the beginning [TS]

  when they were purposely running into [TS]

  all the tropes i thought was kind of [TS]

  obvious and boring and there's about 80 [TS]

  pages after the end of the book when [TS]

  scalzi wonders often into some weird [TS]

  writing exercises that I didn't care for [TS]

  it all to kodys yeah the code as I felt [TS]

  were completely extraneous to the actual [TS]

  story and hug me up bug me a lot because [TS]

  i thought i was finally done [TS]

  kind of like one of those codes as i [TS]

  recall just because I felt like there [TS]

  was some humanity in it that maybe was [TS]

  missing from all of the winking and [TS]

  nudging that had been going on before it [TS]

  that that up but it was a an abrupt [TS]

  tonal shift to suddenly have it be like [TS]

  hey remember those funny jokes about [TS]

  those guys who died they were real [TS]

  people and people mourn their passing [TS]

  the goat cheese but i'd finally gotten [TS]

  to the point where i was accepting the [TS]

  winking indulging I was like all right [TS]

  I've been enjoyed this book on its own [TS]

  self referential level right fine [TS]

  it's too late to make it tried them make [TS]

  me start caring about these guys [TS]

  yeah yeah I can see that dan I know you [TS]

  had this book on your bookshelf for a [TS]

  long time I didn't and I and I read it [TS]

  and I enjoyed it i'm a fan of skulls [TS]

  these work in general this this seems to [TS]

  me to fall pretty clearly into the he's [TS]

  got a couple different veins of writing [TS]

  i feel like i'm so i really like his [TS]

  stuff in the in the old man's war [TS]

  universe and we talked about the human [TS]

  division also a recent polycast this [TS]

  strikes me very much of reminding me of [TS]

  a the androids dream which is another [TS]

  book he wrote his well your novels yeah [TS]

  he writes he's not necessarily quite as [TS]

  successful as someone like Douglas Adams [TS]

  or terry pratchett when it comes to just [TS]

  sort of being like I'm just gonna do [TS]

  total surrealist humor he does something [TS]

  that I i think a little bit it's still [TS]

  kind of grounded in a plot and it still [TS]

  has like a dramatic side to it but it's [TS]

  also kind of if you sort of take a step [TS]

  back holy ridiculous the same time and [TS]

  entertaining especially as someone who's [TS]

  you know watched a lot of star trek in [TS]

  the past it's definitely hits those [TS]

  chords and the metafictional stuff is is [TS]

  I didn't just like it to the extent that [TS]

  Monty did I thought it was fine and I [TS]

  mean it's also i find you know we're [TS]

  talking about now and i read it two or [TS]

  three months ago and i found i forgot [TS]

  most like I remember what I remember the [TS]

  sort of general outlines of it but if [TS]

  you ask me like I had to look up a [TS]

  wikipedia page remember the names of the [TS]

  characters which I guess makes sense [TS]

  because they're red shirts but yeah it's [TS]

  a super light but yeah there were [TS]

  characters in the book they were kind of [TS]

  in well I remember the the wife of the [TS]

  guy who died [TS]

  oh yeah well I don't know yeah maybe [TS]

  that's just because i was at the end or [TS]

  maybe it's because I again I I cared [TS]

  about that it would suddenly was sad [TS]

  these guys were all died right so I mean [TS]

  I you know I give it a thumbs up but I [TS]

  don't know if I would call it my my [TS]

  favorite you know sci-fi novel or the [TS]

  best sci-fi novel of the year [TS]

  yeah I thought it was a pleasant [TS]

  diversion kind of a fun read [TS]

  I would not have guessed that it would [TS]

  be nominated for anything except that [TS]

  John Scalzi has a lot of people on the [TS]

  internet who liked him a lot [TS]

  I think I think you've hit on something [TS]

  your mom hey yes that's a cream i think [TS]

  possibly possible awards are a [TS]

  popularity contest is that what you're [TS]

  suggesting [TS]

  turns out it's true especially the huge [TS]

  well not especially but Hugo's by design [TS]

  right you can [TS]

  they're voted for by fans so obviously [TS]

  if if you who have $65 or more writing [TS]

  so that does that does remove a lot of [TS]

  people from the running [TS]

  yeah my core audience only has like [TS]

  twenty bucks that's why I wanted to work [TS]

  there are only uh only 1113 ballots cast [TS]

  also for the best level this year so [TS]

  they're not a lot of sample size [TS]

  yeah nostril you feel I feel like you [TS]

  should be able to mobilize pretty head [TS]

  about that you really want they did and [TS]

  there how many people really read again [TS]

  we're getting a little metal already but [TS]

  how many people really read enough [TS]

  novels to be able to pick five and [TS]

  savings to the best five in the sauna [TS]

  and the answer is scott is the only [TS]

  person i know they might be able to do [TS]

  that might be able to do that unless [TS]

  you're a professional reviewer working [TS]

  for some public yeah exactly instead [TS]

  what happened is your fan and you ready [TS]

  obviously and and six of them were by [TS]

  people you're a fan of anyway and you [TS]

  nominate them and red shirts with a very [TS]

  high-profile book high enough for us to [TS]

  put it on our list and do an episode [TS]

  about it and yeah I think you read I [TS]

  think you read one book because you're a [TS]

  fan of [TS]

  someone on this list and you nominated [TS]

  also and that's how it gets onto yeah I [TS]

  think that's I think that's a part of it [TS]

  this is this is part of the I mean this [TS]

  is what every awards not just the hugo [TS]

  awards oscars are like this i mean there [TS]

  are lots of things like that were you [TS]

  you people who are more visible are [TS]

  going to have a better chance of being [TS]

  that doesn't mean doesn't guarantee if [TS]

  Richards had been a disappointment for [TS]

  scholars fanbase it would have got [TS]

  nominated but he has a fanbase and [TS]

  that's really liked it and they [TS]

  nominated the power-law curve in action [TS]

  and the Wil Wheaton audiobook I know is [TS]

  very popular with people so i think that [TS]

  that it channels into the insular [TS]

  nervous fear like we talked about an [TS]

  episode 201 where there's this whole [TS]

  culture of people who are pals with each [TS]

  other and promote each other stuff and [TS]

  and that's powerful that that's a [TS]

  powerful marketing tool it's true and [TS]

  there's nothing there's nothing wrong [TS]

  with that and there's nothing wrong with [TS]

  the as long as you come into the Hugo's [TS]

  knowing that and and writing these books [TS]

  that's fine when i first started doing [TS]

  this I didn't really understand how the [TS]

  Hugo's work so I just assumed that the [TS]

  they were you know this is the best book [TS]

  of the year in science fiction and [TS]

  fantasy based on some kind of you know [TS]

  laws of the universe right and so when I [TS]

  am ready to crunch the numbers exactly [TS]

  these in the old Hugo tron 5008 products [TS]

  the best book I believe they have the [TS]

  frozen brain of Hugo Gernsback who [TS]

  actually then they asked he's not dead [TS]

  he's not that's a lie i but i mean there [TS]

  are ways to run a word contest in which [TS]

  you are it's not that you're requiring [TS]

  everyone to watch your read everything [TS]

  and even the Academy Awards I know those [TS]

  are also of course the popularity [TS]

  contests but there's this issue of if [TS]

  you were in an industry and your part of [TS]

  it and you read and observing your you [TS]

  know your message to the media then you [TS]

  may have a better sense of picking which [TS]

  the best one is or the best then you get [TS]

  the nebula whatever you know yeah yeah [TS]

  we're definitely the best fan podcast by [TS]

  us specifically well that's been proven [TS]

  by science i mean i'm pretty confident [TS]

  I'm pretty comfortable taking her second [TS]

  wards are completely valid by the way [TS]

  just so ya know somewhere in every way [TS]

  in the neutral every source alone and we [TS]

  know it because it [TS]

  of that one of the fastest of sciences [TS]

  that your results be repeatable and we [TS]

  won for best fan who might cast fan / [TS]

  news / something general podcast that [TS]

  was that just rolls right off your [TS]

  tongue there Jason admit it so much [TS]

  suffice to say the category included a [TS]

  slash and parentheses but we won that [TS]

  and we were nominated again this year [TS]

  which again scientifically proves that [TS]

  they know what they're doing and [TS]

  therefore proves that we are great [TS]

  incidentally don't vote for us in a [TS]

  podcast about science because we don't [TS]

  know anything about that you lose but of [TS]

  all the many many many awards of one [TS]

  this is the only one yes [TS]

  so anyway red shirts you know I I'm am [TS]

  agreeing with you guys I think it was [TS]

  fine and kind of funny and as a Star [TS]

  Trek fan i liked a lot of those [TS]

  illusions and I like the idea that they [TS]

  were you know that scholars playing with [TS]

  that you expect it to be the single joke [TS]

  book and it's got some more twist up its [TS]

  sleeve like Monty said that leads that [TS]

  interesting middleware they're dealing [TS]

  with a writer on the TV show and because [TS]

  this thing about writers kind of [TS]

  freezing up when they realize these [TS]

  decisions they're making likely for [TS]

  drama are affecting real people in a [TS]

  parallel universe somewhere and I we [TS]

  don't want to kotas i thought was was [TS]

  nice although a lot of fun about up [TS]

  total shift so yeah I i would not read [TS]

  this book and say oh man this is better [TS]

  be on that Hugo list but I didn't hate [TS]

  it i liked it i thought it was fine i [TS]

  just thought it was kind of light and [TS]

  funny and breezy and not anything that I [TS]

  thought this is a meaningful book that [TS]

  I'm gonna be remembering 10 years from [TS]

  now i agree with you Jason completely oh [TS]

  well the feedback episode people will be [TS]

  very angry at that I igers well though [TS]

  the only thing I described as after i [TS]

  read it i thought well this is getting [TS]

  nominated for a human [TS]

  oh yeah but because of the policies not [TS]

  because i work right [TS]

  yeah Kara yeah well I mean yeah it hits [TS]

  all the all the right notes [TS]

  let's move on and I mentioned the other [TS]

  book that we covered in a previous [TS]

  episode I look these up so I can refer [TS]

  all of our interest to them episode 117 [TS]

  titled intergalactic fedex which was [TS]

  about lois mcmaster Pujols latest [TS]

  installment in the Vorkosigan saga which [TS]

  we like and we've done [TS]

  uh we did a whole podcast about the [TS]

  earlier books in the series episode 24 [TS]

  way on way back in 24 called my word is [TS]

  foreclosed again and these are really [TS]

  fun books and this was the latest and [TS]

  it's a little different cause it's not [TS]

  about miles or miles parents it's about [TS]

  his cousin eivin and i as we said that [TS]

  at the time back in December and that [TS]

  was a podcast with Dan Scott and ran on [TS]

  it [TS]

  I this is a I thought this was one of [TS]

  the best for cosine books in quite a [TS]

  while and was again like Richards kind [TS]

  of light and funny but i liked it i I [TS]

  thought it was better than her last two [TS]

  or three again i'm not sure i would say [TS]

  it has the weight or meaning or anything [TS]

  to be at nominee but every for cosecant [TS]

  novel ever seems to have been nominated [TS]

  for a hugo or so okay we'll do that [TS]

  again the land and Monty you weren't on [TS]

  that episode did you guys read it [TS]

  yes I've never made it through a [TS]

  varicose again [TS]

  ok try to even try alright fair enough [TS]

  to Glen Gillman tell us your tell us [TS]

  your thoughts about what I've never read [TS]

  any of them although i've heard you guys [TS]

  talking about there's something a little [TS]

  daunting about when someone's created [TS]

  this world this massive set of novels [TS]

  you like if I go down that you know that [TS]

  path there's a lot to read which is [TS]

  great but it's also using sort of [TS]

  daunting to figure out where you started [TS]

  describing my 2010 Glenn I when I swear [TS]

  I read that's ten of these do right now [TS]

  well there's a diagram in Captain for [TS]

  patrols the lights it's like here's how [TS]

  the books related i'm like oh my god [TS]

  this is like worse than taken any any [TS]

  book with a diagram that sometimes but [TS]

  that's so with no background I barely [TS]

  even know what the universe is about [TS]

  picked it up and I thought it was a [TS]

  lightweight but enjoyable by I could [TS]

  also tell if I bujold is a terrific [TS]

  writer she tells a good story she paints [TS]

  characters in sort of broad strokes that [TS]

  are ok and sometimes she goes in and [TS]

  then does the detail work to refine them [TS]

  a bit but this was sort of a like a [TS]

  silly slightly buffoonish story where [TS]

  everybody's kind of happy in the end [TS]

  more lesson Lee you know so i thought it [TS]

  was I thought it was enjoyable did not [TS]

  for me have the half [TS]

  of what i would expect from a hugo award [TS]

  nominated novel but I didn't read the [TS]

  other novels that were not nominated [TS]

  this year of all to read the ones that [TS]

  were kind of light on the side by side [TS]

  in the last year or last year's you know [TS]

  children and so I didn't you know I [TS]

  wouldn't you know this isn't a dune [TS]

  right i mean this isn't something of [TS]

  that nature and it's not like a [TS]

  hitchhiker's guide either and you don't [TS]

  get those every year I realized but this [TS]

  seemed like with red shirts pretty [TS]

  lightweight to be put in this category [TS]

  alongside books like that that have been [TS]

  nominated in the past I just don't know [TS]

  if this year was a weaker or stronger [TS]

  than usual and we're seeing weaker [TS]

  titles nominate yeah I it's uh she gets [TS]

  nominated every time she's got a book [TS]

  and she's won several times so it [TS]

  definitely is one of those things where [TS]

  it's almost it would be shocking if I if [TS]

  a crucial book didn't get nominated cryo [TS]

  burn which i think is in almost every [TS]

  way an inferior except maybe the last [TS]

  five pages and inferior book to capital [TS]

  for patrols Alliance you know it got [TS]

  nominated and this is a that I think [TS]

  this is much better but that's what I [TS]

  would say about it is is by bujold [TS]

  standards i think this is a this is the [TS]

  best uh your cousin book she's written [TS]

  in years and other stuff is more the the [TS]

  main novels are more serious right like [TS]

  lots is like murderface literally very [TS]

  very that some of them are very [TS]

  adventurous and some of them are are [TS]

  more comedy of manners like oh yeah [TS]

  because they seem to keep referring to [TS]

  genocides all over the place it's like [TS]

  well they're funny Genesis yeah there's [TS]

  a lot I mean there's there's war novels [TS]

  there's murder mysteries it kind of runs [TS]

  all the the genre like sort of across a [TS]

  bunch of genres and monitor cloudy okay [TS]

  I'll tell you this having read this book [TS]

  i'm like i'm actually highly inclined to [TS]

  seek out other novels because it's clear [TS]

  she writes and I'll get some advice [TS]

  about which ones to go through but but [TS]

  it was so that in that sense it was a [TS]

  good good agreed to short short version [TS]

  for me is that they this series starts [TS]

  with two books that were published i [TS]

  think many years apart but most lot lot [TS]

  of them were written together generally [TS]

  publishes an omnibus called Cordelia's [TS]

  honor but it's actually two books shards [TS]

  of honor and Barry are which are about [TS]

  miles for coast against parents meeting [TS]

  and I think I do [TS]

  best thing to do is just to start with [TS]

  those two books I'd that's what i did [TS]

  and i thought they were great and then [TS]

  you can get into the miles books as well [TS]

  after that so I read them [TS]

  chronologically by continuity instead of [TS]

  by publishing date and that's everything [TS]

  that comes in definitely anything by [TS]

  continuity but i'm having a rather [TS]

  enjoyed well I mean a couple of the [TS]

  later ones are not not-so-great [TS]

  diplomatic immunity is to me the weakest [TS]

  in the entire series from the sort of [TS]

  main novels perspective you know it but [TS]

  it's not good series and you'll enjoy it [TS]

  all and all good and it's fun it's not [TS]

  one of those things also where you get [TS]

  to the end of a book and think that [TS]

  you've been short-changed and I there [TS]

  you have to buy the next book to get the [TS]

  rest of the story it's not like that it [TS]

  sits there all self-contained plus [TS]

  there's kind of continuity that runs [TS]

  through them so I do recommend them just [TS]

  good writer house captain for patrols [TS]

  full text of the treaty Alliance title [TS]

  though is that good or should i skip [TS]

  that one [TS]

  I pass on that on all all that material [TS]

  yeah that's not so good Upton captain [TS]

  for accounting well before we move on to [TS]

  the three that we haven't we haven't [TS]

  talked about yet i'd like to talk for a [TS]

  moment about our sponsor [TS]

  oh it's that time and strangely our [TS]

  sponsor is incredibly relevant to this [TS]

  episode because our sponsor is [TS] the leading provider of [TS]

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  looking I believe every Hugo nominated [TS]

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  about is on audible of course like i was [TS]

  saying with the nervous fear john scalzi [TS]

  book redshirts read by wilwheaton now [TS]

  Jason I'm going to be going on a [TS]

  five-hour road trip this weekend [TS]

  interests recommend i get an audio book [TS]

  well it depends it do you enjoy books [TS]

  and and life [TS]

  yes I'm wiser careful i'm bid on the [TS]

  other do enjoy words and the sound of [TS]

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  that's the best place I like sounded [TS]

  that the sound of round is in your ears [TS]

  yes good alright well then i do [TS]

  recommend it now I wouldn't recommend [TS]

  that [TS]

  you listen to one of these books that [TS]

  you've already read because that unless [TS]

  you really enjoyed it but for fans of [TS]

  wil wheaton from TVs Wesley Crusher hehe [TS]

  red red shirts captain for patrols [TS]

  Alliance which we we just talked about [TS]

  that that's available unabridged is the [TS]

  audiobook just wil wheaton reading [TS]

  silently to himself the book you [TS]

  occasionally here and go haha pretty [TS]

  produced by john cage that's the [TS]

  accompanying video shot usually chuckles [TS]

  there's a coming up we're going to be [TS]

  talking about some other books they are [TS]

  available mirror grants blackout for [TS]

  example you can listen to it it as we're [TS]

  going to get to in a moment blackout has [TS]

  two narrators and so the book on the [TS]

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  adjust the series of clicks and whistles [TS]

  you can get ahead shipping perspective [TS]

  throw the Christmas there they're all [TS]

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  give it a listen and they're very nice [TS]

  people who have a huge catalogue of [TS]

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  every book practically that we've talked [TS]

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  trial and learn more about how you can [TS]

  sign up for audible this is the magic [TS]

  URL that makes us happy and makes them [TS]

  happy for sponsoring us it's audible [TS] slash incomparable and [TS]

  thanks again to audible for sponsoring [TS]

  the incomparable who was what should we [TS]

  do next [TS]

  uh let's talk about let's all throw [TS]

  celebrity dress maybe we should quit [TS]

  while we're at it let's talk about [TS]

  throne of the crescent moon by solid on [TS]

  off-net let's talk about that yeah this [TS]

  uh I i thought this was pretty good so [TS]

  let's let's who Scott do you remember [TS]

  anything about this but I remember that [TS]

  it struck me as a cool D&D campaign that [TS]

  someone wrote down haha [TS]

  well and I thought it was entertaining [TS]

  but I didn't really think I was [TS]

  surprised that was nominated for [TS]

  anything I was not disappointed that it [TS]

  was nominated but I was surprised so [TS]

  this i thought this was a fun book let [TS]

  me explain a little bit about what this [TS]

  is it's a fantasy adventure it's very [TS]

  Arabian Nights this is in a kind of [TS]

  unnamed place that is is either in the [TS]

  Middle East or it's in a middle-eastern [TS]

  analog there are some references to [TS]

  places that we might assume to be Europe [TS]

  in Asia and there's a there's a guy [TS]

  who's basically the fighter of uh of [TS]

  supernatural things he sort of a and [TS]

  he's old and grizzled but he's he's I [TS]

  couldn't decide whether he was sort of a [TS]

  an Arabian Nights Fox Mulder or an [TS]

  Arabian Nights buffy the vampire slayer [TS]

  because actually this felt to me like a [TS]

  fairly standard supernatural or or the [TS]

  supernatural brothers honestly Dan to me [TS]

  it seemed like the plot wasn't the way [TS]

  it was something I've seen before it was [TS]

  almost like the trappings where the [TS]

  thing that was interest most interesting [TS]

  about it that it was in this middle [TS]

  eastern setting and it was less familiar [TS]

  to me than any episode of Buffy or [TS]

  supernatural it was like they took a [TS]

  regular fantasy novel which is in kind [TS]

  of a vaguely Western European medieval [TS]

  right venue changed it to a vaguely [TS]

  middle-eastern venue [TS]

  yes and because we haven't seen that a [TS]

  million times it feels fresh and new [TS]

  pressure i liked the character I mean I [TS]

  the main character I I thought [TS]

  particularly again if you're comparing [TS]

  it to a lot of the typical fantasy [TS]

  novels that we read you don't have your [TS]

  young strapping hero right you had your [TS]

  old slightly decrepit hero yeah but it [TS]

  is master and apprentice right and he's [TS]

  the I seen enough of this crap I'm two [TS]

  months from retirement investment about [TS]

  one less collar to make and then i get [TS]

  that he's got his young idealistic [TS]

  sidekick [TS]

  I I certainly saw to a dnd prism like [TS]

  the old guy while he's the cleric and [TS]

  he's got a paladin who's holier than [TS]

  thou and then they meet the fighter lady [TS]

  wow it's funny because I i happen to [TS]

  know that the the [TS]

  that Saladin ran my D&D campaign with an [TS]

  acquaintance of my kool so I know he i [TS]

  know he plays DVD release has run deeply [TS]

  and cracked the code my god I mean who [TS]

  didn't start out writing writing novels [TS]

  versions of their d campaigns not me [TS]

  well and then the party argued for three [TS]

  hours or four would pay for the pizza [TS]

  don't egg lat a glass vision with dark [TS]

  here eating out of the sand some great [TS]

  stuff in it but it was was a novella or [TS]

  maybe a short story that just kept going [TS]

  on and on and on the payoff was sort of [TS]

  terrible and they had set up kind of [TS]

  weave together a bunch of different [TS]

  things were supposed to enjoy the sort [TS]

  of coincidence or whatever and it's like [TS]

  ah you know that your if it had been we [TS]

  have been nominated for Best novella or [TS]

  short story this year we probably have [TS]

  talked about it relatively positively as [TS]

  something that was fresh that that [TS]

  presented as a new viewpoint wasn't [TS]

  rehashing a lot of the common fantasy [TS]

  myths brought in you know some [TS]

  interesting unique elements in a few [TS]

  strong characters but as a novel it just [TS]

  it was too thin [TS]

  I you know it's interesting i read well [TS]

  taking a break from one of the other [TS]

  humans i read that some of that some of [TS]

  these cup of some of his short stories [TS]

  including one that is set in this world [TS]

  with the same characters it's about the [TS]

  first meeting of the master and the [TS]

  apprentice and I enjoyed that I mean it [TS]

  was a pretty quick read it was nice [TS]

  short story but it was um I i think i [TS]

  think there's some meat on those [TS]

  characters the directions and yes well [TS]

  they we may have seen some of that type [TS]

  of stuff before I still found it [TS]

  intriguing and entertaining and let me [TS]

  tell you compared to some of the other [TS]

  books [TS]

  yeah yeah ipi page through this one [TS]

  pretty pretty at a pretty good clip [TS]

  I thought it was kind of a mistake to [TS]

  have a cool Robin Hood type character [TS]

  and then not spend a lot of time with [TS]

  him because he's more fun than the [TS]

  stuck-up kid but also the strongest [TS]

  element is that really horrible thing we [TS]

  are the spoiler alert goes off before we [TS]

  even start the episode right spoiler [TS]

  harm's way [TS]

  this the creepy thing of the beginning a [TS]

  lot of the chapters where that guy is [TS]

  being you know essentially killed alive [TS]

  then boiled his head remover like that [TS]

  is very strong and horrifying and [TS]

  compelling and he keeps the suspense up [TS]

  and then the actual thing is oh he's [TS]

  like a sergeant and all his men will [TS]

  respond to him is like really that's the [TS]

  whole payoff of that yellow thing [TS]

  oh I was actually the most disappointing [TS]

  things the novel the whole climax I i [TS]

  really liked I mean I say that it's got [TS]

  these trappings and otherwise it seems [TS]

  pretty standard [TS]

  I like the trappings I like that the the [TS]

  Prince kind of comes and goes and he's [TS]

  he's too powerful character almost it's [TS]

  not his story but he you know that he's [TS]

  gonna cause he's going to cause some [TS]

  trouble but at the end you know you do [TS]

  end up in this situation where there in [TS]

  this palace and it's it's like it's [TS]

  almost like a runaround Aurora are far [TS]

  swear their various rooms in their [TS]

  various doors that open and don't even [TS]

  stuff and I I had trouble with geography [TS]

  and I i I just I thought really it all [TS]

  ends up to this that they run back and [TS]

  forth in a bunch of rooms and there's a [TS]

  throne and I mean it's in the title [TS]

  there's some buttons or whatever and it [TS]

  just it seemed it did seem kind of [TS]

  abrupt and that the fact that although [TS]

  we've been leading up to the moment [TS]

  where the guy takes over all the [TS]

  soldiers and that was kind of cool [TS]

  it was a whole long way to go for that [TS]

  one little thing that pill that's that [TS]

  happens so so yeah I like I mean I i can [TS]

  say that it's bog-standard and then it's [TS]

  got this interesting trappings you know [TS]

  but the trappings were the best part I [TS]

  like that and I did like the main [TS]

  character I like that he's grizzled and [TS]

  that he's world-weary but he just has to [TS]

  do this and he's you know he's had [TS]

  enough of this crap but it doesn't [TS]

  matter he still got to do it because [TS]

  nobody else will I liked all of that [TS]

  about it and don't forget the madam with [TS]

  the heart of gold [TS]

  oh yeah i mean that and I know what was [TS]

  surprising again not not not that [TS]

  different from a character you might see [TS]

  in george RR martin except that the the [TS]

  setting but the fact that she's got this [TS]

  that this guy is this this pious guy and [TS]

  he's sort of sort of yeah i know it was [TS]

  again I i thought the characters were [TS]

  interesting it was just more than I was [TS]

  realizing as i read it that it was not [TS]

  anything I hadn't read or seen on TV [TS]

  before except that the [TS]

  setting was was you know a different [TS]

  culture than we're used to but I didn't [TS]

  just like it I I a spoiler alert i think [TS]

  i like the best of the five [TS]

  yeah if you actually could have been a [TS]

  doctor who episode with small changes to [TS]

  i did like the shifting povs in the [TS]

  finale where they kind of let the action [TS]

  move you from one character to another [TS]

  where this character is out of the [TS]

  action so now another character has to [TS]

  step in and he takes over the narrative [TS]

  is also having said that I'm getting [TS]

  pretty sick of novels that insist on [TS]

  multiple point of view characters right [TS]

  i want to mention there's two other [TS]

  novels of people like this kind of [TS]

  approach these two of the ones that i [TS]

  really like that are announced the [TS]

  number of years old one is Shiva 3000 [TS]

  which is a sort of fantasy sci-fi novel [TS]

  that takes place in a universe in which [TS]

  all of india's gods may or may not exist [TS]

  it's a really great read from I think [TS]

  1999 I've read it multiple times and the [TS]

  other one is I cannot recall the title [TS]

  of it maybe we can put in the show notes [TS]

  and find myself somewhere it's a book in [TS]

  which greek science is actually way the [TS]

  world is run so the university center of [TS]

  interlocking Spears the music of the [TS]

  spheres if you throw something through [TS]

  space it throws in a straight line and [TS]

  then the velocity is gone it plummets to [TS]

  the ground and it's a beautiful [TS]

  intricate story told in that in which [TS]

  different cultures combined and they're [TS]

  different worldviews are actually all [TS]

  the gentlemen in this universe and it's [TS]

  a really beautiful II told story so [TS]

  there are ways to tell that kind of [TS]

  different point of view in which magic [TS]

  or some kind of combination science and [TS]

  magic are different and you can do and I [TS]

  think really rewarding Lee so am i right [TS]

  in there oh no so Scott and I read [TS]

  blackout as we've read the other two [TS]

  books in the series the newsflash series [TS]

  by merit grant which is a pseudonym for [TS]

  urban fantasy writer shot and McGwire [TS]

  but Monty you read it too didn't you [TS]

  yes I read blackout and I had not read [TS]

  either of the other two and Glenn did [TS]

  you read it too i was actually making my [TS]

  way across the desolate plains of the [TS]

  novel and in tweeted about it i think [TS]

  and i was given permission by you and [TS]

  Scott to stop [TS]

  I still read about Iran I was shamed me [TS]

  into reading it now i know that's how I [TS]

  work [TS]

  that's how I read about a third of it [TS]

  and was despairing it was told I was off [TS]

  the hook so I i stopped at Point with [TS]

  grateful that Marie I didn't want to be [TS]

  the one responsible for that [TS]

  yes I couldn't live with it alright so [TS]

  we read so famously we read two years [TS]

  ago we read feed and our are short [TS]

  review of feed was don't read feed [TS]

  because it wasn't very good it was very [TS]

  well written and this is a series set [TS]

  its it's in the future after a zombie [TS]

  apocalypse but not a complete apocalypse [TS]

  it's sort of a zombie inconvenience more [TS]

  than anything else [TS]

  electricity is still functioning there [TS]

  seems to be so there's slightly it's [TS]

  just that there are lots of dead zones [TS]

  and a lot of people die dammit now [TS]

  nobody can have big pets because i think [TS]

  the episode when we talk about feed was [TS]

  called zombie Marmaduke because if you [TS]

  get a big enough dog it can turn into a [TS]

  zombie but small dogs don't turn into [TS]

  zombies and there are bloggers and [TS]

  bloggers tell the news like it is man [TS]

  and they post things on the internet and [TS]

  they fight the power mandar but you have [TS]

  to be licensed to be a blogger yeah you [TS]

  got a contentious make sense yeah that [TS]

  doesn't that's not how blogging works [TS]

  there's an unfiltered unfettered [TS]

  internet that's available all the time [TS]

  everywhere with no maintenance required [TS]

  for cellular towers or anything to it's [TS]

  pretty incredible that's yes there's [TS]

  also ultra luxury hotels available [TS]

  really there are removing their forget [TS]

  the zombies [TS]

  yeah well that's behalf of the books do [TS]

  that basically you have to do you have [TS]

  to be there so in the first book the [TS]

  main character Georgia Mason dies toward [TS]

  the end split sorry no monumental why [TS]

  are you listening [TS]

  well thats not not as much of a spoiler [TS]

  as we thought at the time though haha [TS]

  first line of blackout is her dying yeah [TS]

  so so she dies and i thought that was [TS]

  the best thing in the book because it [TS]

  was at least a bold move by the the [TS]

  writer to do that but we didn't like [TS]

  Scott I didn't like the book and then we [TS]

  didn't like the sequel deadline in which [TS]

  is told by her brother and she and her [TS]

  brother had that their adopted and they [TS]

  have this creepy relationship which is [TS]

  never really kind of I think I think [TS]

  outwardly stated is is more than [TS]

  brother-sister they are adopted after [TS]

  all it's not entirely incest but it's [TS]

  creepy is creepy so in so in in at the [TS]

  end of deadlines we discover that [TS]

  there's a [TS]

  clone of Georgia who has come back to [TS]

  life [TS]

  what I and and all and i remember very [TS]

  clearly Scott saying don't talk so much [TS]

  about her dying in that book because [TS]

  you're gonna be disappointed [TS]

  uh so-so in blackout we have an [TS]

  alternating set of narrators we got [TS]

  Shawn and Georgia clone Georgia as as [TS]

  she figures out where she is and why [TS]

  she's a clone and he drives around [TS]

  because there's conspiracies their stuff [TS]

  to do something about mosquitoes but you [TS]

  don't really seem to care that much and [TS]

  doesn't make any sense it yeah really [TS]

  doesn't say like they have all this [TS]

  great incredible security at the place [TS]

  where the mad scientist is doing the [TS]

  research except Tommy's just get in [TS]

  there get in because they only have them [TS]

  in there they do good protocol and sing [TS]

  like roaches just getting it's covered [TS]

  with everyone because others [TS]

  oh and don't forget don't forget he [TS]

  can't be infected with the zombie virus [TS]

  for sorry can be only gets a little sick [TS]

  he's actually coming suddenly he Shaun [TS]

  Mason is is is immune to zombie listen [TS]

  you have to take antibiotics to make [TS]

  some sick but it does not make a zombie [TS]

  and that doesn't even really play into [TS]

  the plot where know you think it would [TS]

  such a thing no it's like a vampire [TS]

  hunter can become a vampire because he [TS]

  already is part of that you get Glen is [TS]

  lending money you guys didn't read the [TS]

  other two books right right now okay [TS]

  you see you maybe not yeah probably not [TS]

  yeah you made me off this will shock you [TS]

  I thought this was by far the best of [TS]

  the three yes i agree here i want to [TS]

  take one side but no matter which is I [TS]

  by far [TS]

  Shane is only Prince John I think shawna [TS]

  and shawna I liked one of the short [TS]

  stories she wrote that was nominated for [TS]

  Hugo the cell end she's yes I like that [TS]

  one very much i read multiple times [TS]

  she's extremely funny and kind and I [TS]

  didn't even know it was her when i first [TS]

  started following on Twitter recently [TS]

  when the issue came about sort of [TS]

  feminist issues she's really interesting [TS]

  funny person I sort of feel terrible [TS]

  because this the stuff is terribly [TS]

  terribly written if it's a very popular [TS]

  so there's no reason she will change [TS]

  what she's doing and she's ridiculously [TS]

  productive she's the Glen fleischmann of [TS]

  science fiction/fantasy writing when you [TS]

  throw quality of the [TS]

  Gigi's Glenn you're talking like yes I [TS]

  did that's called branding right there [TS]

  that isn't that is insulting you [TS]

  you did it yourself i'm in terms of [TS]

  quantity quantity relentlessness and [TS]

  she's the lex friedman of glory its [TS]

  habitat that's pretty good with ya now [TS]

  I'm sure she's a lovely lovely perfect [TS]

  this is just a terrible it's terrible [TS]

  nothing I feel like it almost is [TS]

  fanfiction that fan fiction it's it's [TS]

  something that desperately need an [TS]

  editor and shouldn't have been printed [TS]

  I almost wonder if this was something [TS]

  she wrote earlier in her life and [TS]

  brought it out of a cold out of a trunk [TS]

  novel and and put it under a pseudonym [TS]

  and then and and it sold well yeah I [TS]

  don't know that's just pure speculation [TS]

  on my part so so here's the thing I've [TS]

  been [TS]

  i wiII Scott my kind of were famously [TS]

  among listeners to this show about how [TS]

  we beat me to death and it's very rare [TS]

  that we find something and we kick it to [TS]

  death it does happen occasionally man of [TS]

  steel the Avengers with Andy and and [TS]

  some other things that we've done where [TS]

  we've kicked him to death but uh I have [TS]

  to say I think I maybe have figured out [TS]

  why i don't like these books mean yes [TS]

  the plots don't make sense [TS]

  uh characters aren't good i had no idea [TS]

  why they did what they did at the end of [TS]

  them with the writing is not very good [TS]

  at science is Ben there's a moment I i [TS]

  mentioned a weird relationship by the [TS]

  way I i think i even maybe I should [TS]

  bring up my kindle notes about this [TS]

  there's a moment in this book where I [TS]

  think she seriously expect us to be [TS]

  shocked when we discover that Shauna [TS]

  Georgia have a sexual relationship that [TS]

  they had their entire life where I [TS]

  remember my armor Scott I talking when [TS]

  we were in the midst of reading feed [TS]

  about how creepy the twins were because [TS]

  they were totally all buying each other [TS]

  and all over each other twins or or or [TS]

  brother and sister and I thought this [TS]

  year is this really really a revelation [TS]

  of any kind of shocking [TS]

  yeah it's clear from reading the book i [TS]

  mean i just read this book and I thought [TS]

  that was what's going on [TS]

  his crown I kept forgetting whether they [TS]

  were brother and sister or husband and [TS]

  white i had to go back and check out [TS]

  their adopted this effort leads not so [TS]

  they're not genetically related so it's [TS]

  not technically incest like I said [TS]

  that's our episode title that's the next [TS]

  book and serious not technically incest [TS]

  by programs either i misunderstand it [TS]

  misunderstand this or or she has an [TS]

  opinion of her readers that is vastly [TS]

  different from my opinion as a reader [TS]

  because i would like to well if you read [TS]

  these books you're not that discerning I [TS]

  wasn't sure force 3 and I you know I it [TS]

  they are you know they're mindless reads [TS]

  right and like zombies hey you know go [TS]

  ahead read your it's your time but [TS]

  they're not very good if you like [TS]

  zombies I say don't read these books is [TS]

  not if you like this could be like [TS]

  bloggers and you like government [TS]

  conspiracies man who can be unbearably [TS]

  one over by the bloggers then read these [TS]

  books is that they're zombies content is [TS]

  really low [TS]

  what is what is the CDC doing all this i [TS]

  don't okay so the villain of the piece [TS]

  is the Centers for Disease Control there [TS]

  in the evil the most evil organization [TS]

  that is he wanting to hoard all [TS]

  knowledge about the zombie the [TS]

  kellis-amberlee virus which causes [TS]

  zombie-ism because reasons because evil [TS]

  reasons hilaria reasons yes uh and so [TS]

  the heroes are some other three letter [TS]

  acronym government organization that's [TS]

  fighting a sec so yeah so bizarre the [TS]

  oversight Department of the division of [TS]

  government ecological over stairs are [TS]

  ridiculous climax in the white house [TS]

  that could now never conceivably happen [TS]

  in the White House where the president [TS]

  is running around and my biggest problem [TS]

  in there are a lot of problems with this [TS]

  is my biggest one is so there's this [TS]

  whole point where they clone [TS]

  what's-her-face George yeah and it's a [TS]

  very important plot point anything okay [TS]

  well they've done this for a reason and [TS]

  it should be a good reason right and it [TS]

  is an incredibly stupid reason they [TS]

  spend millions and millions and millions [TS]

  of dollars to clone her because the vice [TS]

  president the president is being held [TS]

  captive by the CDC the bike rack is the [TS]

  only way that he can get them out is by [TS]

  cloning this dead blogger [TS]

  so the dead bloggers can tell the public [TS]

  and the CDC because the the public will [TS]

  not trust anyone else and then the CDC [TS]

  will be forced to release the president [TS]

  you missed something that Scott you [TS]

  missed something because they're the the [TS]

  CDC's evil plan is to perfect the clone [TS]

  so she's exactly Georgia and then once [TS]

  they perfected the back it off a little [TS]

  bit so that she's not perfect they're [TS]

  going to use the perfect Georgia clone [TS]

  to sell the concept of clones to [TS]

  millionaires or something or something [TS]

  good yeah it's this month but then but [TS]

  then at the climax at the climax they're [TS]

  like okay where we have to save the [TS]

  president so let me make a phone call [TS]

  and then I'd ok the president saved what [TS]

  why did you bother clone Georgia so I [TS]

  haven't said the thing the thing that I [TS]

  think rubs me rose me wrong about these [TS]

  books more than all of this because the [TS]

  reason i said this was the best is I [TS]

  feel like her I feel like her individual [TS]

  like action set pieces were better in [TS]

  this than the first 2i thought that this [TS]

  was this was a much more capably written [TS]

  book in that way but what what really [TS]

  drives me crazy and it's been throughout [TS]

  these books is there's a lot of it's [TS]

  just bad style i think is the thing that [TS]

  offends me the most is that with all we [TS]

  said about the ridiculous plot it's not [TS]

  pleasant to read I could forgive a lot [TS]

  of it was enjoyable to actually read the [TS]

  words but there's so much repetition so [TS]

  much and insistence on details and the [TS]

  donation can I get you a couple of a a [TS]

  canonical right now yeah that would i [TS]

  would really enjoy opening a coke every [TS]

  time I'm gonna get you a coke and I [TS]

  think that I think coke might be sweet [TS]

  while you're doing that Glenn I'm going [TS]

  to jam my thumb on a zombie virus [TS]

  detector reader and what happens you see [TS]

  when that happens is needles bite into [TS]

  my thumb and then the blood comes out [TS]

  and then I wait as the light goes from [TS]

  red to green to red to green to red to [TS]

  green to red to green oh green I'm say [TS]

  so i gotta send it on my thumb here [TS]

  before you get that can cook for you so [TS]

  i have to do that first before as well [TS]

  then haha so you jam your thumb in there [TS]

  and the needles go see because this is [TS]

  what happened or is that comes that that [TS]

  this information is repeated every few [TS]

  pages [TS]

  is across all three books the same names [TS]

  something with the state it's a nonsense [TS]

  places you don't need zombie scanner and [TS]

  all the plants so those details that are [TS]

  unnecessary and and then things that [TS]

  don't make sense and you know again [TS]

  that's it is stylistically I think this [TS]

  these books are a failure plus the plots [TS]

  are nonsensical so I don't know she has [TS]

  a following she's a huge fan base [TS]

  Sean Maguire got nominated for like [TS]

  seven Hugo's or something this year [TS]

  she's in the podcast categories in the [TS]

  short story categories in the novella [TS]

  cavities in the novel category [TS]

  she's all she's I think she's in some [TS]

  other categories she's all over the [TS]

  place and that's great because she's got [TS]

  fans who love her [TS]

  I hope they love her for some of her [TS]

  other works that are presumably better [TS]

  than me is because all three of these [TS]

  books are awful and I was generous with [TS]

  this one on goodreads I gave it two [TS]

  stars instead of one [TS]

  it's so funny because I people usually [TS]

  accuse us you know we starting the [TS]

  specifics about something people like [TS]

  what you have an animus against this [TS]

  author something it's like no I've got [TS]

  nine of us have anything against I know [TS]

  nothing about this it races all about [TS]

  these are really terrible i mean i know [TS]

  that this is a really terrible thing I [TS]

  read it was so bad I could not I did not [TS]

  want to finish it went well didn't have [TS]

  to i did not i have to really specific [TS]

  things i did not like about this book [TS]

  lay upon us one is everybody is so [TS]

  quickly at every opportunity [TS]

  it's like a joss whedon fanfic kind of [TS]

  thing where it was especially because [TS]

  she keeps talking about somebody named [TS]

  buffy who I never saw because she's not [TS]

  in this book yes she dies in the first [TS]

  book she's just she's really in hacker [TS]

  who as Scott pointed out since God is an [TS]

  IT professional encrypted the most [TS]

  valuable database on earth with like a [TS]

  four-letter password [TS]

  yeah like her name is really good here a [TS]

  couple of things people actually say in [TS]

  this book at incredibly tense moments [TS]

  could we go with a slightly less out [TS]

  worthy doomsday weapon next time okay [TS]

  that's it no more mr. nice heavily-armed [TS]

  really pissed off journalist Beck's [TS]

  frowned clearly half-asleep bats [TS]

  yeah you know flap flap squeak squeak [TS]

  works for Dracula [TS]

  we come in peace i called more quietly i [TS]

  added for Beck's benefit i have always [TS]

  wanted to say that I think that's when [TS]

  they're taking the vice-president [TS]

  hostage [TS]

  you don't say that then you can't be [TS]

  that quickie of all the time anyway [TS]

  she's either theory she's an incredibly [TS]

  good programmer and shut down the road [TS]

  software that this is one of the first [TS]

  round [TS]

  ok so here's my explanation for these [TS]

  books is is that uh huh and I do have [TS]

  one its it reads to me like somebody [TS]

  who's pictured a a movie in their head [TS]

  and is literally just writing down the [TS]

  dialogue and writing down the camera [TS]

  movements and writing down the yeah you [TS]

  know it what they're seeing on the [TS]

  screen and so every time somebody stick [TS]

  their finger in the reader she has to [TS]

  explain what the finger thing is and and [TS]

  but that's how it feels to be the [TS]

  dialogue especially is painful because [TS]

  there's so much of it and it's so rep [TS]

  repetitious and pointless and and [TS]

  there's no sense uh in the entire book [TS]

  of compression she doesn't understand [TS]

  that if you have five characters and [TS]

  they need to go somewhere that's four [TS]

  rooms away that you don't need to [TS]

  describe them opening each door stepping [TS]

  through each room what's in each room [TS]

  opening the next door until they get to [TS]

  the next room in these books every [TS]

  single thing that could happen from one [TS]

  end to the other and every word that [TS]

  every character might say or think is [TS]

  detailed and it's that's not good [TS]

  writing doesn't need to have that good [TS]

  writing you just end up in the next room [TS]

  and as you the writer does shorthand to [TS]

  say well and when they got to that room [TS]

  this is what happened that's important [TS]

  and this book has no sense of importance [TS]

  and not importance of scenes they're all [TS]

  just they're all just frames at 24 [TS]

  frames per second in the movie in the [TS]

  writers head as far as i can tell a [TS]

  brilliant thing that douglas adams wrote [TS]

  in i think in the third or fourth [TS]

  hitchhiker's guide book about where said [TS]

  you know readers you might have a [TS]

  question about the things I leave out [TS]

  and he goes things like for instance if [TS]

  i were to tell you about our thursday [TS]

  and our sister gets up he scratches one [TS]

  side then he gets up he does this hold [TS]

  eat something and it's all a question of [TS]

  whether Arthur [TS]

  actually has sex with with venture [TS]

  church but it's very funny thing of like [TS]

  what it would be like for a writer to [TS]

  write all the details excruciating Lee [TS]

  what actually happened i think that's [TS]

  what you described yeah but this is a [TS]

  whole book of that trilogy for you put [TS]

  your finger on trilogy really more than [TS]

  a book another thing i did not like Oh [TS]

  Monty yes or I to other specific things [TS]

  ok but what is at the beginning I was [TS]

  gonna shout or even the horse but I got [TS]

  here zombie have sweet kill hooks to [TS]

  beat up I've just got this 1i I made you [TS]

  read it you should talk as long as you [TS]

  need to get out i'm listening at the [TS]

  beginning of each chapter there's other [TS]

  descriptions of what happened and that's [TS]

  weird because a lot of time it's by the [TS]

  same person who's the first person [TS]

  narrator of these things yes but now [TS]

  they're going to give us excerpt from [TS]

  their lawyer and haha where unpublished [TS]

  blog published on log and they have [TS]

  dates drafts that's not a thing these [TS]

  people are taking time to write this [TS]

  stuff down that was what I wondered is [TS]

  when did they have time to write the [TS]

  unplugged published blog entries during [TS]

  this adventure who is time to write [TS]

  unpublished blog entries if it's a blog [TS]

  if you don't publish it [TS]

  finally there's just one sentence that [TS]

  really bothered me [TS]

  it's describing the Fox would lose the [TS]

  ludicrously colorful psychotic character [TS]

  they run into it was very weak me the [TS]

  senses [TS]

  oh yes as she claimed her hands over her [TS]

  ears i saw that she was holding a nasty [TS]

  look he's a nasty-looking snipers pistol [TS]

  first i'm not sure the snipers pistol is [TS]

  i think most laborers use rifles but [TS]

  forget that [TS]

  yeah she's for clamping her hands over [TS]

  her ears while holding a sniper's pistol [TS]

  isn't she just gonna knock yourself out [TS]

  or something we can only hope she's [TS]

  crazy money she's crazy just crazy stuff [TS]

  like that cause she's crazy but she's [TS]

  supposed to be holding the pistol on [TS]

  them and said she's alright yeah alright [TS]

  she got three him it's not early [TS]

  it's what we're saying is it's not good [TS]

  read it good but what it if you're going [TS]

  to read it [TS]

  listen to it on audible thank you two [TS]

  narrators read any two pages of it [TS]

  you got the whole thing yes lots of [TS]

  redundancy is lots of we don't let's be [TS]

  antsy and then lots redundancy [TS]

  alright let's move on i've said i've [TS]

  saved for fifth Kim Stanley Robinson is [TS]

  2312 the winner of the nebula award for [TS]

  best science fiction novel of the year [TS]

  this is 2312 is set in the sometime in [TS]

  the early 23 hundreds the German sherlyn [TS]

  um so I've been waiting like five weeks [TS]

  to make that joke haha and you abused [TS]

  your self-pity ideas and it's sadly [TS]

  accurate because it's not exactly set [TS]

  it's a it's Grand Tour kind of novel [TS]

  it's it's got scenes on Mars and Mercury [TS]

  and earth and in the outer planets and [TS]

  the moons of jupiter and saturn and [TS]

  asteroids and it tells it this far [TS]

  future story it tells of there's a plot [TS]

  and there's also lots of detail of sort [TS]

  of the future of of human society and [TS]

  culture and I think as somebody who read [TS]

  the red blue green Mars trilogy which I [TS]

  enjoyed quite a lot actually [TS]

  by Kim Stanley Robinson it seems to [TS]

  maybe be set in the same universe he [TS]

  sort of soft petals the Mars stuff and [TS]

  that led me to believe that it probably [TS]

  is the same or at least similar universe [TS]

  to that I don't know [TS]

  and this is yes this is one lots lots o [TS]

  awards so when I talked about this book [TS]

  with Glenn Glenn said that he had [TS]

  started reading it was so furious that [TS]

  he put it down and we had to coax him [TS]

  into reading the rest of it which I [TS]

  think he did and dan dan you read [TS]

  stretch most of this right i I'm about a [TS]

  hundred and fifty pages from the end a [TS]

  lot wait a long time to say something [TS]

  about this classy something with us know [TS]

  when I started so i'm a long time Kim [TS]

  Stanley Robinson fan I even would refer [TS]

  to as ksr as his fans too i read the [TS]

  red-green-blue Mars ones and thought [TS]

  some of the best science fiction since [TS]

  dune since the first do not the sequel's [TS]

  tremendous scope tremendous scientific [TS]

  insight great characters ability to [TS]

  create you [TS]

  verse to deal with characters over the [TS]

  span of a century [TS]

  I read other novels and short stories [TS]

  read written and read nonfiction is [TS]

  written looking forward to this [TS]

  i bought this from amazon in hardcover [TS]

  the moment came out pre-ordered it [TS]

  picked it up and started reading it and [TS]

  I thought I'd had a brain aneurysm and [TS]

  in fact I wrote an article for The [TS]

  Economist's package blog about how I [TS]

  scored double check whether i'd actually [TS]

  had a stroke or seizure because i [TS]

  started reading it I thought this is [TS]

  terrible the writing is flat the [TS]

  characters are uninspired the science is [TS]

  bad this camp that by the there's [TS]

  instantaneous communication without an [TS]

  answer was always like a distant and I i [TS]

  actually thought is something wrong with [TS]

  me because it can't be wrong with Kim [TS]

  Stanley Robinson is genius [TS]

  he's been all this great stuff and the [TS]

  end of course it's it's not me it's him [TS]

  and I think I overreacted a little bit [TS]

  because when i came back to watch just [TS]

  timed that does not sound like you [TS]

  doesn't sound I do anything under [TS]

  reacted but I came back to it and my [TS]

  opinion is is is it's still I don't like [TS]

  it and we can talk about it was like [TS]

  forth but it's not as horrible seem [TS]

  excited such high expectations from [TS]

  anything you would write because it's [TS]

  never disappointed me in the past and i [TS]

  thought this was another sprawling [TS]

  wonderful installment in his work and it [TS]

  is not but I didn't finish the whole [TS]

  thing [TS]

  this is great because i'm on the [TS]

  entirely opposite spectrum of Glen in [TS]

  terms of going into this which is then I [TS]

  red red mars maybe I don't know 10 15 [TS]

  years ago and found it dull didn't read [TS]

  any other books Nets here using did not [TS]

  do not remember that we're all of them [TS]

  not liking it and I went into this and i [TS]

  also found stop there are a couple [TS]

  things I every once in a while I mean [TS]

  okay [TS]

  it takes about a hundred and fifty pages [TS]

  before you hit a plot and that to me is [TS]

  the problem number one right like [TS]

  there's there's there's there are people [TS]

  like you sort of start out with this [TS]

  character who's died and the main [TS]

  character who is her brand on [TS]

  yes and so on certain supposed to take [TS]

  over her work [TS]

  it's not clear with that work is there [TS]

  are lots of other people involved it's [TS]

  not really clear what they're doing [TS]

  either and it takes about a hundred [TS]

  fifty pages before somebody tries to [TS]

  blow up a city on Mercury her city [TS]

  before [TS]

  I was like ok now we finally cut into [TS]

  the point of this story at which point [TS]

  you with and spend 1 240 bitches like [TS]

  dawdling around and dr. King's point as [TS]

  a stronger i want to read i will read [TS]

  the thing i'm reading this and and I i [TS]

  agree that it's like with is going said [TS]

  it's flat except every once in awhile [TS]

  little stuff pokes through and I'm [TS]

  amazed that it's like i start to get [TS]

  like you know maybe like wipe away the [TS]

  dirt you're like oh I'm trying to see [TS]

  what he was going for it so i want to [TS]

  read the one line that made me laugh out [TS]

  loud a lot and it's in one of the lists [TS]

  chapters their these breaks breakouts [TS]

  where they have like lists or extracts [TS]

  from other pieces of work or whatever [TS]

  yeah there's a list where they have a [TS]

  list of all the different types of [TS]

  terrariums these artificial structures [TS]

  they've built and here's all the [TS]

  different types of trends they had and [TS]

  this was my favorite was the st. George [TS]

  a social terrarium in which the men [TS]

  think they are living in a mormon [TS]

  polygamy was going to consider it a [TS]

  lesbian world with a small percentage of [TS]

  male lesbian that made me laugh that [TS]

  made me laugh and I was like wait am I [TS]

  reading this book rock because maybe [TS]

  this book is supposed to be funny and I [TS]

  have come across have come across a [TS]

  couple of things subsequently that that [TS]

  were actually amusing or like you know [TS]

  made me chuckle a little bit we did john [TS]

  scalzi write this book is this not an [TS]

  entire medical resilient material may be [TS]

  but I can't quite i mean i don't really [TS]

  understand maybe I'm not very good at [TS]

  transcription happen after overtime so [TS]

  you also have the Straits a little bit [TS]

  perplexing i was on the boing boing [TS]

  podcast which I I thanks to glen [TS]

  presumably the only reason they asked me [TS]

  is glad recommended me with a sci-fi [TS]

  writer run as a mom who is so he has [TS]

  written some really interesting stuff [TS]

  that maybe we'll talk about in a future [TS]

  podcast he and he loved 2312 and i have [TS]

  to admit i said i don't i don't okay [TS]

  it's good for you I I you know you are a [TS]

  smart guy in a science fiction writer [TS]

  but it just I i have a hard time [TS]

  understanding the [TS]

  love for this Scott you know what you [TS]

  what is your take on on 2312 as you [TS]

  remember it I know you've got the [TS]

  probably been months since Iran's book [TS]

  and it has been a while but i will say [TS]

  that I this is the book that i have [TS]

  voted 4-2 win the ok conflict here we go [TS]

  yeah it's true but I mean I can [TS]

  understand how people can hate it as i [TS]

  was reading it and like I really like [TS]

  this but I understand why people don't [TS]

  like it at all [TS]

  there's an unlikable character for large [TS]

  portions of the book you have no idea [TS]

  what's going on [TS]

  it is rambling there are weird chapters [TS]

  with just lists and fragments of texts [TS]

  these are not things that make a book of [TS]

  all that likable but for me this [TS]

  combination really worked well because [TS]

  of there's this kind of the stroke right [TS]

  that humanity when you reach a certain [TS]

  level of technological advancement [TS]

  people just get bored and there's [TS]

  nothing to do and that's kind of what i [TS]

  thought was the kind of the the Swan the [TS]

  main character who is kind of all she's [TS]

  haha horrible person she's not a nice [TS]

  person but she's interesting is because [TS]

  i was just nice she's also dumb and does [TS]

  lots of dumb things she does some very [TS]

  dumb thing so she's bored and so she [TS]

  says hey I know what I'll do I'll inject [TS]

  this alien bacteria into my system and [TS]

  see what happens right and so the answer [TS]

  is a bad things happen right so she that [TS]

  although it also saves her life [TS]

  potentially to do you want accident yeah [TS]

  so we don't know what's happening right [TS]

  and then there's this other guy who [TS]

  likes her for some reason and but it's a [TS]

  frogman or whatever I can be brought [TS]

  about a war on with a w was a war on [TS]

  barham mrnas named thousand times i can [TS]

  remember [TS]

  yeah he falls in love with her but she [TS]

  is really incapable of love so edgy and [TS]

  uses him and he like walks for like six [TS]

  months under the surface of mercury to [TS]

  save her life and she's kind of like [TS]

  whatever you can walk a little faster [TS]

  that seems for me was reflected out the [TS]

  entire novel heels [TS]

  yeah speak speaking of people of Robert [TS]

  compression yeah [TS]

  oh my true but I thought that was the [TS]

  point of it right it was and and tell me [TS]

  that you don't need it but that was the [TS]

  point he was making he was trying to [TS]

  make you feel like the web how those [TS]

  characters [TS]

  accomplished and I i can agree that with [TS]

  you that it might not work well I will [TS]

  argue at work because it was in fact [TS]

  boring but I thought that was the whole [TS]

  way and as and I also i really like the [TS]

  facts are there there's this big city on [TS]

  Mercury that's on the track the opposite [TS]

  has to get out of the sun's way and I [TS]

  thought I would bring it this is stupid [TS]

  because who would ever live on this kind [TS]

  of a precarious situation and I know [TS]

  something's gonna happen to the track [TS]

  and then I thought well people do live [TS]

  at the base of volcanoes people with [TS]

  ever so it's kind of makes sense that [TS]

  when you get to this kind of [TS]

  technological arrogance you're not sure [TS]

  why not live in a moving city on Mercury [TS]

  what could have I would be way more [TS]

  impressed had I not seen that exact same [TS]

  device in a 2-3 zone Star Wars novel 20 [TS]

  years ago mom [TS]

  well I probably read that novel but i [TS]

  don't remember the other thing that got [TS]

  me though was you know obviously even [TS]

  forget all that i mentioned i was [TS]

  describing life I got brain damage was [TS]

  because the the science didn't work and [TS]

  he's a serious researcher of science and [TS]

  reason to Mars books one of the things [TS]

  that's nice about them is the ecological [TS]

  geological like there's so much in there [TS]

  that is accurate self-consistent and you [TS]

  learn a lot about Mars as it is now in [TS]

  fact ring them it's got that hard [TS]

  science really tries to not do things [TS]

  that are impossible then you get this [TS]

  thing and he even States a number of [TS]

  times i've talked about redundancy good [TS]

  gravy but he states seemingly number of [TS]

  times that you can have quantum [TS]

  computers but they can't untangle the [TS]

  quantum entanglement far enough to lose [TS]

  coherence you can't get very far apart [TS]

  the elements so you can make an ansible [TS]

  which is a great device word coined by [TS]

  Ursula K Le Guin in I think left hand of [TS]

  darkness one of the early books for a [TS]

  device that basically it's the it's the [TS]

  MacGuffin on the government's the forget [TS]

  the deus ex machina you need in science [TS]

  fiction as you have communicators that [TS]

  are very far apart and they can talk [TS]

  together instantly because stuff and [TS]

  there should not be any ansibles in this [TS]

  universe and yet people talk to each [TS]

  other seemingly instantaneously without [TS]

  any explanation and they also travel [TS]

  across the breadth and length of the [TS]

  solar system including out of the plane [TS]

  of the elliptic in seemingly [TS]

  ridiculously small amounts [TS]

  time without any explanation it doesn't [TS]

  need an explanation that's good let's [TS]

  party that's well everything is better [TS]

  exactly but he he has just enough [TS]

  science in it the ebay is just enough [TS]

  science in it that you expect him to [TS]

  offer here i'm gonna wave my hands [TS]

  explain why this works and i'll accept [TS]

  that because that's part of the thing [TS]

  but then he does stuff that is [TS]

  contradictory to the ability for his [TS]

  university self-consistent and it irks [TS]

  me [TS]

  well i did not get the feeling better [TS]

  the the trips between and they make a [TS]

  lot of trips to different planets but i [TS]

  did not get the feeling with those were [TS]

  quick trips [TS]

  no I don't think he ever kind of [TS]

  chronologically dates the chapter so you [TS]

  don't really know how long it a no but [TS]

  it'd be like 20 or 30 years [TS]

  it'd be like 20 or 30 years [TS]

  and instead of the novel i think it's [TS]

  supposed to take place within a couple [TS]

  years but it was they don't know because [TS]

  they're so they sell there are very [TS]

  long-lived right so they could take 20 [TS]

  years they could just be there hanging [TS]

  out on a going from asteroid to [TS]

  asteroids the guy in venus is only there [TS]

  for short you can track the guy in venus [TS]

  is there for a certain period of time [TS]

  and what happened to the guy in Venus [TS]

  was like apparently accidentally placed [TS]

  there and winds up being completely [TS]

  critical to the entire current order of [TS]

  the solar system not being disrupted [TS]

  because that's how this novel works so [TS]

  often when does like the science the [TS]

  science didn't bother me so much things [TS]

  bother me about this novel sissies the [TS]

  the so the the Grand Tour aspect of my [TS]

  dan says that the plot doesn't really [TS]

  start for a while and I said you know it [TS]

  is that really the point I i don't think [TS]

  it is either the plot is thin [TS]

  the plot is this terrorist kind of fish [TS]

  plot about they blow up the going to use [TS]

  like the rocks because it through these [TS]

  AIS that are uncontrolled that are being [TS]

  able to figure out these precise details [TS]

  with rock seem like they're not [TS]

  connected but then they come together at [TS]

  the very last minute and they blow [TS]

  things up & it and it's not necessary [TS]

  that the story is it's an excuse to show [TS]

  these characters on this tour of what [TS]

  humanity is going to be like in 2312 and [TS]

  if you really if that works for you as a [TS]

  a wonderful tour of the solar system and [TS]

  a vision of what the future of humanity [TS]

  where humanity is taking a bunch of [TS]

  different forms [TS]

  it's very different from a distant which [TS]

  which I i think is to its credit because [TS]

  if you look at something like Star Trek [TS]

  that supposedly set in the far future [TS]

  but it's just people from today [TS]

  essentially in the culture hasn't [TS]

  changed the fact is that in in 70 years [TS]

  of life 60 years of life people see huge [TS]

  cultural change in the world around them [TS]

  if you go ahead 300 years the cultural [TS]

  change is going to be mind-blowing in [TS]

  terms of things that we think of this [TS]

  awful today like I suppose injecting [TS]

  yourself with alien microbes from [TS]

  Enceladus her we're right in being very [TS]

  lives of [TS]

  of very sexualized I don't mind the [TS]

  sexual identity stuff that's another [TS]

  generation a bunch of different genders [TS]

  in a bunch of different roles very [TS]

  complicated to keep tracking is actually [TS]

  much better so I like that it's like [TS]

  this is what the future is like it's [TS]

  very alien because 300 years from now [TS]

  you if humanity is still alive at eight [TS]

  whether it's on a outer space [TS]

  you know at all the asteroids or not [TS]

  it's going to be very different and [TS]

  engine would be shocking to us just as [TS]

  you frankly our culture of 40 years from [TS]

  now will be shocking to us as we're [TS]

  grumpy old men so that's all that's all [TS]

  fine and that's that's very [TS]

  science-fictional my problems are first [TS]

  off as a grand tour novel I've seen [TS]

  better but it's not groundbreaking it [TS]

  may be an interesting vision but like [TS]

  charles stross is Saturn's children [TS]

  which was nominated a couple years ago [TS]

  which the main character is actually a [TS]

  sexpot but I thought it was better that [TS]

  it was a better grand tour of the solar [TS]

  system in the future it's very al any [TS]

  any grand tour that includes the sex [TS]

  it's good it's a very it's very spaced [TS]

  off broken loose X but it's like you [TS]

  know we're gonna go show you all these [TS]

  planets and how the different ways [TS]

  people live now so I didn't think that [TS]

  was special and and then the other thing [TS]

  that really bothered me about this book [TS]

  is this [TS]

  yes Juan is it is a an awful character [TS]

  and you don't have to have likable [TS]

  characters but it's harder you gotta [TS]

  work harder if your main character is [TS]

  awful and does stupid things and at [TS]

  several points jeopardizes like [TS]

  everybody in the book for no good reason [TS]

  because she's bored or doesn't care or [TS]

  doesn't think through her actions [TS]

  she's like she's like a walking talking [TS]

  plot complication like the plot would be [TS]

  too simple Swan didn't come by and do [TS]

  something stupid but she's the other [TS]

  problem I have with this is that is that [TS]

  in Glen and I were talking about it just [TS]

  a moment ago [TS]

  it's interesting that they talk about [TS]

  the future of people having different [TS]

  genders and multiple genders at once and [TS]

  all the different forms of sexual [TS]

  coupling and all of that and I thought [TS]

  that was interesting but at the core of [TS]

  this book is this relationship between [TS]

  Swan this awful person and warm the [TS]

  frogman from the outer planets [TS]

  and was very nice and they and who is a [TS]

  very nice fellow and she's awful and [TS]

  he's nice but he loves her i would say [TS]

  kind of inexplicably but sometimes that [TS]

  happens Phoenix the heart doesn't know [TS]

  from logic ok I'll go with that and it [TS]

  in the end I guess the novel sort of [TS]

  portrays that they they get married and [TS]

  they or they are in a relationship and [TS]

  there there's some there's some [TS]

  attachment at the very end I guess but [TS]

  um that was that actually really bug me [TS]

  because in the history in all of human [TS]

  history there is emotion and love and [TS]

  Perry pair bonding and in this book I [TS]

  felt like Kim Stanley Robinson excelled [TS]

  at imagining all sorts of different ways [TS]

  that human humans could change their [TS]

  plumbing and their gender identity and [TS]

  their sexual orientation but he couldn't [TS]

  imagine a future with people who love [TS]

  each other and and and when I realized [TS]

  that this relationship that supposed to [TS]

  be at what the novel hinges on is [TS]

  completely barren of any feeling at all [TS]

  and it's all about the plumbing and the [TS]

  social constructs of gender and [TS]

  orientation [TS]

  that's when I got mad at this novel and [TS]

  said this is a guy who loves playing [TS]

  with planets but doesn't know anything [TS]

  about people and at that point I decided [TS]

  that I hated it so that's my story I [TS]

  think that's I think this is a very [TS]

  interesting cerebral imagination like [TS]

  where it in his little imagination land [TS]

  of the future but as as a novel about [TS]

  human beings and what it means to be [TS]

  human in 2312 look to a writer who isn't [TS]

  Kim Stanley Robinson because he failed [TS]

  it's weird though because the Mars [TS]

  novels he doesn't have that problem at [TS]

  all [TS]

  it's it's all about people and there's [TS]

  something about people that they're not [TS]

  all nice but they're interested and [TS]

  their relationships are much more [TS]

  meaningful but that's neither [TS]

  complicated scene / f two fat it to me [TS]

  it just felt like these people were [TS]

  awful people who felt no feelings and [TS]

  even when there was a feeling like war [TS]

  on liking Swan it made no sense and it [TS]

  was almost like he was like adopting a [TS]

  cat and I just I didn't [TS]

  I just didn't I felt no love in these [TS]

  characters the Frank was a very [TS]

  complicated character he has he has he [TS]

  has various moods and darkness is again [TS]

  transforms and through the novel's Frank [TS]

  is like one of the strongest characters [TS]

  and is not a nice guy for most of it but [TS]

  you respect time well its dynamics ax is [TS]

  a member sacks is a memorable older in [TS]

  there and he'll expose completely flawed [TS]

  human being but it's very interesting [TS]

  and and and swan is an interesting she's [TS]

  very flawed she's not very interesting [TS]

  anyway I feel like we came into swans [TS]

  life at a point where she had done all [TS]

  of her work she made her little [TS]

  terrarium said she was not romantic [TS]

  dreams and she was done and she's just [TS]

  kind of being an awful person [TS]

  untethered to the world kind of looking [TS]

  for for meaning and failing to find it [TS]

  and she fails to find it in a [TS]

  relationship she fails to find it yeah [TS]

  you know trying to solve her [TS]

  grandmother's work she just you know [TS]

  she's unhappy and 2312 alien microbes [TS]

  can't help her [TS]

  no way eyes can't help nothing could [TS]

  help her the way I think drove me nuts [TS]

  because it's like oh my god the AIS [TS]

  might be in it [TS]

  wait a minute we should turn them off so [TS]

  they can't hear us because of course an [TS]

  off button AIS will work perfectly [TS]

  hey I if I turn you off will you be able [TS]

  to hear me oh no not at all well we have [TS]

  to trust me i really wanted to buy you [TS]

  off now [TS]

  yes damn Donna Marino yes i will say [TS]

  this I i don't think i have encountered [TS]

  a book that was probably better read on [TS]

  in ebook form because the number of [TS]

  words i had to look up in this book and [TS]

  I have a pretty good vocabulary [TS]

  yeah I looked up a lot of work that's [TS]

  yeah he seemed to really like words I [TS]

  totally see what this was supposed to be [TS]

  though this was supposed to be the [TS]

  melding of money and you can see that [TS]

  was supposed to be this very clever [TS]

  melting of the ton of different ideas [TS]

  had percolating the idea of journal [TS]

  pages from someone who is almost an [TS]

  undead hand of this person trying to [TS]

  help turn the entire you know that [TS]

  I'm not empire but you a collection of [TS]

  planets trying to strife it's her [TS]

  journals her dead hand guiding them [TS]

  through this fragmentary knowledge being [TS]

  presented through sort of a flawed [TS]

  grandchild who matures and become [TS]

  someone and you know that happens though [TS]

  it's all just separate individual weird [TS]

  stuff that happens and that's why it [TS]

  doesn't work for me is that it's not a [TS]

  story [TS]

  no lightning and that's that's what I [TS]

  was complaining about what the plot [TS]

  centers use write the story as an excuse [TS]

  to get them to move around and explore [TS]

  this world because he really just wants [TS]

  to show you this world he's envisioned [TS]

  and that's great but you know this is [TS]

  not the medium for them it's a text [TS]

  Archer without the interactive part yeah [TS]

  I don't it's an info dump it's an [TS]

  infidel yeah when telling you from 500 [TS]

  pages like I've got all these cool ideas [TS]

  really envision things i like i like the [TS]

  people at the edge of the solar system [TS]

  who are building the ship to go to [TS]

  another world and the AI thing i really [TS]

  like i like the word salad actually of [TS]

  the day is that are trying to be people [TS]

  and that occasionally you instead of [TS]

  getting these weird info dumps of [TS]

  reference material you get these words [TS]

  salads of its like this is how an [TS]

  artificial intelligence thinks and its [TS]

  trying to put things together [TS]

  I thought that was pretty cool but you [TS]

  know again that these are the things [TS]

  that I mean I can see why people would [TS]

  like the Grand Tour and like this great [TS]

  writer who has written so many things [TS]

  giving you this vision of the future and [TS]

  revisiting some of the territory and [TS]

  some of his most famous work other [TS]

  things i can say that i liked about it [TS]

  but in the end I mean this is it's weird [TS]

  this is like when I try to tell people [TS]

  about why i didn't like inception and [TS]

  and it's it's not that I thought it was [TS]

  bad like poorly executed it's that I [TS]

  thought about it for a long time and [TS]

  decided that I didn't like it [TS]

  that's not the same as saying oh this is [TS]

  a crappy movie it's like this is a very [TS]

  interesting work that I want to think [TS]

  about a lot and then in the end I [TS]

  verdict is actually i think by thinking [TS]

  about it i've determined that I hate it [TS]

  and that's sort of how I feel about this [TS]

  is that i had to think about it a lot [TS]

  about why i had the feelings i did about [TS]

  it but in the end I don't I think it's a [TS]

  failure but I I know I i would argue yes [TS]

  play at to represent the best piece of [TS]

  literature in a year [TS]

  of any genre it should be the book that [TS]

  makes you think the most whether or not [TS]

  i like it or not [TS]

  right so I is ideally I would like it [TS]

  and it would make me think well I me but [TS]

  i think but it depends on what you're [TS]

  reading right then i have lots of notes [TS]

  during blackout does that mean it's the [TS]

  best backup [TS]

  I like what I thought in blackout is [TS]

  mostly why God why the benefile I i [TS]

  think i came down somewhere in between [TS]

  you Jason and Scott which is that i [TS]

  don't know that i have the energy to [TS]

  hate this book is no middle ground [TS]

  I is what I was just like I was i'm [TS]

  reading this you know and i'm slogging [TS]

  through it and I'm reading it you know [TS]

  in my major amount of reading time which [TS]

  is like right before i go to bed and let [TS]

  me tell you how this is not a great book [TS]

  three right-handers go to bed because [TS]

  only unless you want to go to bed in [TS]

  which case it was great but yeah it's [TS]

  just I don't know it's I I didn't I [TS]

  don't the energy you spoke in this is [TS]

  fascinating i mean i-i love that we've [TS]

  got all these different different views [TS]

  about this book and you know again I've [TS]

  talked and talked to people who hated it [TS]

  and then I've seen people love it and [TS]

  it's won awards and I don't hate it is [TS]

  not it's not it's me it's not [TS]

  incompetently I mean again my apologies [TS]

  my apologies to mirror grant and her [TS]

  writer behind the pseudonym but that's a [TS]

  book that's not executed well at all [TS]

  it's a poorly written [TS]

  it's just a bad book is poorly written [TS]

  it doesn't make any sense [TS]

  it's bad in every conceivable way [TS]

  essentially this is not like that this [TS]

  is not the work of somebody doesn't know [TS]

  what he's doing he knows exactly what [TS]

  he's doing and and full credit for that [TS]

  he's got a lot of really interesting [TS]

  ideas [TS]

  there's a lot that he's thrown in here I [TS]

  don't think it works but you gotta give [TS]

  him credit it is not an empty box that [TS]

  he's trying to foist off on this all [TS]

  he's a smart guy is is something didn't [TS]

  something did not work here it's things [TS]

  that are bland can make us crazier than [TS]

  things we hate because yeah I feel [TS]

  strongly about something that you hate [TS]

  your like here's why and these are the [TS]

  wrong and just run off into other stuff [TS]

  it's horrible when its blend you're like [TS]

  oh there's so much [TS]

  what I will say there was one thing I [TS]

  really did like in this was the rocks [TS]

  warm i thought that was very clever very [TS]

  well hidden throughout it and it built [TS]

  up it was the only plot thing that [TS]

  actually sort of made sense and was a [TS]

  through line to the end but then when [TS]

  you determined the cause of it was [TS]

  absurd an interesting but the idea of it [TS]

  and how it was built into the plot was [TS]

  actually rather close yeah that was the [TS]

  point where i started to get interesting [TS]

  as I actually liked the mystery part of [TS]

  it and that might think among my [TS]

  favorite chapters in there are the ones [TS]

  with the inspector was they try to sort [TS]

  of puzzle through this is what we have [TS]

  here she is here she is yes it's [TS]

  referred to as he settles we'll take a [TS]

  look because she earlier on [TS]

  did you notice i got noticed something [TS]

  there's a trick that there's a trick in [TS]

  there every time the inspector genette [TS]

  is mentioned there's never i would I [TS]

  can't confirm this I haven't searched [TS]

  the entire novel there's never a gender [TS]

  use always on Jeanette which is you [TS]

  typically all I saw uses hehe yeah I [TS]

  think we're saying yes because i noted i [TS]

  saw it there and set and thought to [TS]

  myself wasn't when I was not a willing [TS]

  but it 20 but in 2312 could have people [TS]

  who identify as male and that means that [TS]

  the year their penis is larger than [TS]

  their vagina [TS]

  I not that they don't have both also [TS]

  also i love that we haven't invented we [TS]

  have invented new pronouns despite make [TS]

  what we have but Kim Stanley Robinson [TS]

  has to translate them for our crazy 20th [TS]

  century years [TS]

  how about a novel just about inspector [TS]

  genette because I kinda like that that [TS]

  reminded me of the the main character in [TS]

  the in the book that we read i can't [TS]

  remember now Scott it was the copy that [TS]

  the space based on door yeah happening [TS]

  somali i love that guy [TS]

  zombie that guy that you know yeah he [TS]

  had a space he was with a wonderful [TS]

  character the best character in the yeah [TS]

  the thing that was reminded me about [TS]

  here which again speaking of space [TS]

  operate deep deep space humanity out the [TS]

  outer solar system kind of fun thing [TS]

  books that i enjoyed more than this one [TS]

  but so okay we have five we have five [TS]

  novels who uh I'm gonna I'm gonna ask [TS]

  each of you two were two to rank them [TS]

  really quickly from best to worst [TS]

  because i think that would be [TS]

  interesting [TS]

  I go first I i say thrown to the [TS]

  crescent moon first and then I have a a [TS]

  a large drop off and then I think I say [TS]

  captain for patrol and then red shirts [TS]

  because i actually like those and then [TS]

  it's 2312 and then it's blackout [TS]

  Scott what about you don't understand [TS]

  that ranking but awards falls somewhere [TS]

  between twenty somewhere around 2312 I'm [TS]

  not sure above or below [TS]

  ah so 2312 is my first choice [TS]

  ven captain for people's alliance throne [TS]

  of the crescent moon redshirts no award [TS]

  yes no blackouts like we agree on no [TS]

  award and blackout yes [TS]

  damn i'll say captain Orbital Sciences [TS]

  my favorite I then i will say thrown to [TS]

  the crescent moon which is second should [TS]

  win or should have won because of the [TS]

  series thing redshirts 2012 didn't read [TS]

  blackout and feel like I'm okay with [TS]

  that yeah [TS]

  glen i think i would go in order [TS]

  I guess it's things i like to actually [TS]

  enjoyed reading the water enjoyed [TS]

  reading them which I hope corresponds to [TS]

  order i think i should be recommending [TS]

  to people is I think capital patrols [TS]

  Alliance red shirts throw the crescent [TS]

  moon and I LSA differentiate between [TS]

  them but you know sort of loosely in [TS]

  that order and then a very very very far [TS]

  down 2312 and i would not recommend [TS]

  blackout anyone about you Monty [TS]

  don't throw the crescent moon made me [TS]

  want to read more by that author red [TS]

  shirts made me generally away with [TS]

  reading more skulls you want to read the [TS]

  center of more things by the hospital [TS]

  well the problem is every time I read [TS]

  something by john scalzi is because [TS]

  somebody has linked me to him being or [TS]

  really mean to someone [TS]

  yeah so I got kinda tired of that and [TS]

  Richards kind of turned me around on [TS]

  that it so he can actually write fiction [TS]

  old dance water is good [TS]

  yeah it's on my bookshelf there's a lot [TS]

  of things i will show me out and then [TS]

  blackout on the bottom [TS]

  ok that's a good place for it i'm [TS]

  willing to why i will be interesting to [TS]

  see what actually wins the hugo I i [TS]

  would guess it's going to be red shirts [TS]

  because because scalzi tickets although [TS]

  Kim Stanley Robinson won the nebula so [TS]

  who knows it's true [TS]

  who votes on the nebula scifi writers [TS]

  yes yes science specialist association [TS]

  of america [TS]

  yes is that the fan mobilization I mean [TS]

  what won the last two years wasn't it [TS]

  the know uh blackout all-clear bye-bye [TS]

  uh listen [TS]

  connie willis my mother liked my joy [TS]

  among others which was great [TS]

  ok says it's reliable so she's got she's [TS]

  got the she's got the chops to get [TS]

  nominated for other zombie novels but [TS]

  not when so far no she won't she won't [TS]

  so if ya blackouts not going to it now I [TS]

  i would hope not [TS]

  keep telling yourself that this guy [TS]

  telling Hugo yeah i think we should be [TS]

  added for if ultimatum if-if-if blackout [TS]

  wins if any of those novels win then we [TS]

  switch it and next year you'll be [TS]

  listening to us talk about the humans [TS]

  are the nebula nominees instead and uh [TS]

  speaking of which I wanted to point out [TS]

  one of the nebula nominees I've read it [TS]

  NK jemisin who wrote an excellent low [TS]

  that was a huge nominee and and has [TS]

  written a great trilogy this is the [TS]

  first book in a new series called dream [TS]

  blood [TS]

  the book is called the killing moon it [TS]

  was nominated for the nebula but not the [TS]

  hugo and I don't know if you guys have [TS]

  read it [TS]

  scott glenn may have I it will i would [TS]

  say i would say it's better than any of [TS]

  the hugo nominees I liked it a lot [TS]

  it's not it's not super spectacular one [TS]

  of my favorites of all time kind of [TS]

  thing but i liked it and one of the [TS]

  things I liked about it all is although [TS]

  it's got some of the setting stuff [TS]

  culturally that throw the crescent moon [TS]

  does and that it's this middle eastern [TS]

  desk culture not just like a patina over [TS]

  a standard story no it's very different [TS]

  about a guy who's like a a taker of [TS]

  souls but he's a compassionate taker of [TS]

  souls and there's a whole Brotherhood of [TS]

  the compassionate takers of souls but [TS]

  they can be corrupted in turn to a [TS]

  Reaper which is an evil stealer of souls [TS]

  for bad purposes and there's a there's a [TS]

  an evil king and there is this whole [TS]

  political imagination thing happening [TS]

  and a war between these two there's an [TS]

  ambassador and and there it's it's uh [TS]

  it's there's the whole there's entry got [TS]

  majestic master and there's a master and [TS]

  an apprentice and it's it's better than [TS]

  throwing the crescent moon and i think i [TS]

  think it was the [TS]

  better than the five nominees so if [TS]

  you're if you're if we have dispirited [TS]

  you about the hugo nominees maybe try NK [TS]

  jemisin is killing moon she has written [TS]

  a bunch of this is our fourth I think [TS]

  novel you wrote that trilogy and then [TS]

  this this is the first in this other [TS]

  series i thought was really good so I [TS]

  think she and I think she's really good [TS]

  cuz i know you guys really liked that [TS]

  the other two books in the trilogy that [TS]

  started with hundred thousand kingdoms i [TS]

  think was the first book you have read [TS]

  dogs all three hours the first thing i [TS]

  would say all three of them were better [TS]

  than me this year's nominees each of [TS]

  them is where the good trilogy is [TS]

  actually out there it is controlled and [TS]

  i have i've written on my blog [TS]

  yes that's why are you licensed nine [TS]

  books that I thought should have been [TS]

  nominated cool [TS]

  wow whoa if anyone wants to what [TS]

  probably the best one is the the fractal [TS]

  prints but based on the reactions to [TS]

  2312 everyone other than me on this [TS]

  podcast will hate the fractal friends I [TS]

  i read the first book in that series and [TS]

  quite liked it so do you get kind of [TS]

  cranks up the the we're on the yes the [TS]

  almost in kind i did not she think that [TS]

  was one of the ones where I did not [TS]

  think I would like it and i almost put [TS]

  it down within the first 20 pages and [TS]

  then I don't know what hooked me but I [TS]

  really ended up enjoying that book so [TS]

  and I i was just looking at my wishlist [TS]

  and notice that the fractal prince was [TS]

  on it [TS]

  I'll and you should read it ok I don't [TS]

  know what youre anything came out but i [TS]

  just read the night circus and I thought [TS]

  that was okay [TS]

  oh yeah I like that one Wow was a couple [TS]

  years ago that's what looks hows it [TS]

  wasn't long time wasn't the wasn't the [TS]

  route from this year [TS]

  yeah I nominated it and it didn't work i [TS]

  was gonna say that was my one of my [TS]

  favorite books from this year get it won [TS]

  the australian equivalent good fan good [TS]

  friend ya mate which is in methods and [TS]

  metrics and upside down [TS]

  it drives on the wrong side of the road [TS]

  as a politician yeah I that was I [TS]

  nominated the rook and I renominated the [TS]

  dog stars and my things didn't get [TS]

  nominated which made me sad because I [TS]

  actually read some some things that were [TS]

  that were better than these nominees and [TS]

  try to get the nominated and it didn't [TS]

  happen [TS]

  oh well oh such as life when the results [TS]

  are announced later this summer we will [TS]

  find out what else we can use our [TS]

  massive influence as a podcast to [TS]

  mobilize people to pay $65 next year and [TS]

  nominate quality novels for the huger [TS]

  happy like perhaps our are incredible [TS]

  power and while they there they could [TS]

  many nuts for the fancast word to me has [TS]

  all right it's not rate you ever suggest [TS]

  however we know that the Hugo's are not [TS]

  the scientific determiner of the best [TS]

  podcast that's the parsec awards which [TS]

  as I said earlier we are nominated again [TS]

  and thank you to them and all the wise [TS]

  wise people who they are not many [TS]

  technical although there may have been [TS]

  some kind of mistake in their audio [TS]

  drama department there may have been [TS]

  that many possibly i'm gonna just I'm [TS]

  gonna just take what I can get [TS]

  I'm i forgot to update my PHP script to [TS]

  vote for us there sorry that's a shame [TS]

  you alright so that's it we did it we [TS]

  did it we read most or all of the hugo [TS]

  novels Scott and I get the gold stars [TS]

  again [TS]

  545 with who we read another one of [TS]

  those books Scott and hey whole trilogy [TS]

  oh and the short story or not the right [TS]

  I didn't read that [TS]

  do you get that you get the purple brown [TS]

  star for that one good job how lucky for [TS]

  you [TS]

  yeah and I feel special well well I'm [TS]

  glad at least that i will never have to [TS]

  read a media and hopefully say that [TS]

  don't why would you why would you jinx [TS]

  yourself by God and I've only one day [TS]

  away from retire then she writes a new [TS]

  series about podcasters who fight [TS]

  Frankenstein yes man may I would love [TS]

  that sounds great so we did it we read [TS]

  them I like doing this I like it less [TS]

  this year than in previous years [TS]

  I don't think this is a very strong crop [TS]

  when I enjoyed the i actually was also [TS]

  read the first in that mary robinette [TS]

  kowal series about the Victorian series [TS]

  about the glamorous people so glamorous [TS]

  glass should have also bright i read the [TS]

  third book in that series figuring i [TS]

  would need to write i would need to read [TS]

  the second one and then it didn't get on [TS]

  if the you go so I didn't need to read a [TS]

  bit that was a better series too so yeah [TS]

  and the second book is a lot more action [TS]

  good first four is good but first book [TS]

  is a lot of people salespeople and [TS]

  worried about offending other people and [TS]

  yeah [TS]

  yes and educational dinner parties with [TS]

  magical Glamour's yes there's still some [TS]

  dinner parties wasn't glamorous but [TS]

  there's also a Napoleonic soldiers and [TS]

  escape oh that's nice [TS]

  well I'll have to check them out alright [TS]

  so that is the saddest are you gonna [TS]

  lepas owed for this year we read we read [TS]

  them [TS]

  we did it great we made for the end and [TS]

  i would like to thank my guests for [TS]

  coming along on this journey with me [TS]

  Scott melty as always thank you for [TS]

  reading all the five books you get in [TS]

  addition to that Brown star you do get [TS]

  the the gold the golden eye glasses for [TS]

  being our ace reader [TS]

  thank you for being here thank you for [TS]

  having me you get a coke and oh god I'm [TS]

  i like pepsi that's too bad your finger [TS]

  in this whole first yeah the needles [TS]

  will come out I wasn't doing later ok [TS]

  here's the mind-killer and Fleischmann [TS]

  thank you for reading books [TS]

  it was a pleasure to be here more so [TS]

  than reading all the books for the play [TS]

  and yes at least you have the podcast [TS]

  look forward to after you read the book [TS]

  that's the nice thing about reading his [TS]

  books trip they do offend you say well [TS]

  i'm gonna give him what-for on the [TS]

  podcast option i'll have an opinion on [TS]

  the ATS right that that makes it all [TS]

  better [TS]

  Monty Ashley thank you for for coming in [TS]

  the last minute and reading many books i [TS]

  actually did something with my week [TS]

  hooray hooray i'm sorry we made you read [TS]

  that mirror handbook though I'm sorry [TS]

  about that i can tell you to stop Monty [TS]

  your own fault will give you candy later [TS]

  who hey I win but you could say you did [TS]

  it it's like climbing a mountain of [TS]

  crappy crappy bound and Dan more and you [TS]

  you know didn't read it that you are the [TS]

  wisest of us all [TS]

  thank you for being well i'm on every [TS]

  podcast I can't read everything ever [TS]

  gonna have I only have so much time so [TS]

  true so true and thank you to our [TS]

  sponsors audible where you can actually [TS]

  listen to these very books that we [TS]

  talked about at audible [TS]

  / incomparable until next time I been [TS]

  Jason snow and I continue to be Jason [TS]

  sell most of the uncomfortable [TS]

  thanks for listening take a look it's in [TS]

  a book a Reading Rainbow we'll see you [TS]

  next time [TS]