« One small victory | Main | Strange: Beginning and Endings »

January 30, 2010


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

I've read others of his, but not this one. It doesn't sound like I'd like it.

I have very fond memories of Healer.

One element I appreciate is that unlike many libertarian authors, Wilson doesn't have it overwhelm the setting through sheer awesomeness. In fact, even though the found of the League was libertarian, only one world converts to his way of thinking.

It's a thin book by today's standards: only 183 pages (...) It's an utterly complete story without a wasted word anywhere.

My wife says that publishers are stepping away from doorstop tomes and back to slimmer books, presumably because of the cost of paper. Sure enough, her last's manuscript was required to be shorter, and, had the publisher not used a larger font(1), it'd have been quite thinner.

Ever since I've been reading Asimov's regularly, I've noticed that today's novellas(2) tend to be bloated tales that should have been shorter, but when I come across a novella that is a miniature novel, it's a wonderful experience.


(1) That seems like a contradiction. It may be that they think a reader will feel she/his is getting more of her/his money's worth with a bgiiger book than with short and cheaper book.

(2) aka yesterday's novels.

I always had a preference for longer books because I read fairly fast and as teenager (reading adult novels) with more free time, I was regularly burning through three novels a day. Twenty library books a week, which was the most they would let me check out at once. So I went twice a week.

Long books could be enjoyed for longer. I liked trilogies for the same reason: they could occupy me for an entire evening.

Nowadays, I think there are a lot of horrendously padded books out there, most of which are not so fabulous on the worldbuilding side as to justify the strain the length places on plotting. And I have a lot less reading time, which I am less starved to fill, so I can really appreciate the virtues of a good short novel.

And I have a lot less reading time, which I am less starved to fill

Out of curiosity, has the rate of your fiction acquisitions decreased accordingly? If not, you'll be needing a TARDIS library soon. Speaking of which, at the local SF club's meeting, they were talking about the collection of the late Jack Speer, an old-time fan who was a correspondant of Bradbury: some of them had recently looked at his collection and said there was no way all those books could fit into what from the outside was too small a room.

Speaking of book lovers.... Robert de Niro's nickname as a kid was 'Bobby Milk' because of his paleness, which itself came from his by far preferring spending time indoors with books.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)