October 2, 2008
A super-intelligent alien race summons species from throughout the galaxy to a meeting. The topic of discussion is how to prevent the imminent collision of our universe with another, and hence the destruction of life and reality as we know it. Now, you’re probably wondering the same thing I was: will breakfast be served at this meeting? If not, we should stop and get something on the way. Also, where’s the bathroom for Earthlings? We can’t all recycle our urine like the floating zqxkj plants from Anteres Perseii 8, you know. Also, is this book any good? No. It is not.
On a scale of things cosmic engineering students do to freshmen during frosh week ranging from writing on them when they pass out to making them wear a dress to class, this book is: forcing them do the crabwalk with a marshmallow up their ass, and if they drop it, they have to eat it.
September 17, 2008
When the Galactic Empire threatens to collapse (Galactic termites in the rafters) the sum knowledge of the universe is taken to a planet which will serve as the ‘Foundation’ of a brand new empire. Y’see how the title ties back to the content? Clever. This book made me realize I hate Isaac Asimov. I’ve always hated him, but I’ve been too afraid of what people would say if they found out, so I pretended to be someone I wasn’t. But now I’m saying it loud: I hate Asimov and I’m proud! Out of the closet and into the streets! But not the street where the store that sells Isaac Asimov’s books is, because his writing is gay! Also, I don’t care for the Beatles.
On a scale Village People members ranging from the cowboy to the construction worker, this book is: the accountant.
August 17, 2008
Funny story: I read a lot of Vonnegut in high school, and in the back of one of his books was an authour bio that described him as ‘America’s foremost black humourist’. But when I saw a picture of him looking decidedly Caucasian, I was totally confused, and thought for awhile that there must be two famous authours named Kurt Vonnegut, Jr., one black and one white. It wasn’t until I submitted an essay about Player Piano in which I claimed that ‘Vonnegut’s pessimism about the place of humanity in the new industrial age is told in a distinctly African American voice.’ that I discovered my error. Anyway, this book is pretty good. Recommended.
July 17, 2008
This book was released in Europe as The Kraken Wakes. A better title would’ve been The Reader Sleeps. It’s essentially the story of sea monsters attacking the world told through a series of press conferences, newspaper articles, breakfast table conversations and…even this…terse synopsis…is making me….drowsy.
On a scale of deep-sea maladies ranging from an earache to the bends, this book is: mild swimmer’s itch.
June 17, 2008
The last man on earth is holed up in his house trying to survive against his former friends and neighbors, who are now vampires. The worst thing about having neighbors who are vampires is that, after they bite you, they borrow your lawnmower and never return it. Plus, their vampire kids invite their vampire friends over and have a big vampire party where they blare Vampire Weekend all weekend. Back to the book: read it and see why I Am Legend is I-am-legendary. Recommended.
On a scale of things that suck ranging from leeches to the Dyson vacuum cleaner, this book is: the film adaptation of this book.
May 17, 2008
A group of teens trapped on a remote and savage planet band together and form a crude society to survive. Sort of like Lord Of The Flies in space. Pixar has already started production on an animated film version, Lord Of The Flies In Space: The Movie. And rumour has it Andrew Lloyd Webber has been tapped to stage Lord Of The Flies In Space: The Movie: The Musical! Finally, all you bibliophiles out there are sure to love James Kahn’s Lord Of The Flies In Space: The Movie: The Musical: The Official Novelization (With 16 pages of full-colour photos!) Then some nerd will blog about it.
On a scale of things that make tunnels in the sky ranging from sky gophers to sky sandworms, this book is: the short-tailed Western sky vole.
April 17, 2008
Jolly Old England is completely de-jollified when a food shortage causes the Brits to descend rapidly into crazed barbarism. And who can blame them? Without kippers, kidney pies and toads-in-holes, I’d go off my chump, too, old boy. This book is basically like The Road, except with no happy ending to reaffirm your faith in humankind (yuck!). Like a British weather forecast, it’s dreary, miserable and grey, and shows no sign of letting up. Highly recommended.
On a scale of grasses ranging from Bermuda to Fountain, this book is: Creeping Red Fescue.
March 17, 2008
Australia. In the wake of a nuclear war, a small group of survivours struggle through the challenges of daily life, grimly secure in the inevitability of their imminent deaths. Together, they form a sad, poignant and inspiring tableau of life at the end of the nuclear age. I’m speaking, of course, about The Road Warrior. I love that movie. I think that’s where Nevil Shute got the idea for this book. A good case for banning the bomb.
On a scale of radiation sickness ranging from mild nausea to immediate death, this book is: sterility and some bleeding.
February 17, 2008
VOR has come to Earth to tell of an imminent invasion by his own planet. VOR’s destruction will warn his people that we have the galactic chops not to be messed with. But should we kill VOR just to save ourselves? This classic 1950’s tale of life, love and sacrifice is perhaps best remembered by the final chapter, in which young Joey (played by Brandon DeWilde) cries “VOR! VOR! Come back!” as the titular character rides off across the plain.
On a scale of three-letter words beginning with V ranging from VEG to VUG, this book is VIG.
January 17, 2008
A nuke war causes modern society to revert to bleak monasticism, which, over thousands of years evolves into a modern society, which once again launches a nuke war, which starts the whole silly cycle over again. Or as Cypress Hill said, ‘What go around come around, kid.’ This book is a brilliant commentary on organized religion’s pros (provides strength during difficult times) and cons (priest may diddle you in church kitchen; if kitchen in use, supply cupboard) and answers the age-old question as to which of the faiths pleases God the most (Sorry, Jews). Highly recommended.
On a scale of fallen civilizations ranging from the Incan to the Aztec, this book is: the Norte-Chico.