Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Book Review: THE WAVE

Walter Mosley’s “young adult” novel 47 is nominated this year for a Prometheus Award. So why didn’t I read it instead of The Wave? Well, the Science Fiction Book Club was offering The Wave for a price I couldn’t ignore (i.e., nothing) and not offering 47 at all, so...

I got what I paid for.

Mosley, best known for his Easy Rawlins mysteries, has a writing style that appeals to me. It’s lean but lyrical. It really sings. But even that can’t save The Wave. Mosley takes the “black oil” idea from X-Files and spins a lot of new age hokum about a benevolent, shared-mind, collectivist, extraterrestrial life form that just wants to be friends with humanity (before it takes over the planet like some 1950s body-snatcher). Now, I’m actually fond of a lot of new age hokum, but this new age hokum is so tired and hackneyed that plowing through the novel’s second half was a chore — and the book’s a short one, 200 big-print pages. I was so anxious for closure that I began rooting for The Wave’s fanatical Homeland Security death squads to destroy the godless socialist entity once and for all.

So now I’m wondering: if this latest sci-fi novel of Walter Mosley’s is claptrap, how good can 47 be? And should I bother reading it before the Prometheus Awards are announced in August?

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At 8:16 PM, Blogger Anders Monsen said...

I'm currently half-way through 47, and I think so far that t's a great novel. The essence of freedom dating back to Etienne de la Boetie (which I think you'll grasp right away) seems to me the center-piece of this book, and while I have only about 30-45 minutes available each day to read the book, it sticks with me far longer.


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