Night of the Jabberwock by Fredric Brown
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC!
When I think of Fredric Brown I think of fantastical SF with quirky characters and wild happenings, so I didn't hesitate any when I saw this one up for grabs in Netgalley. Imagine my surprise when I actually acquired a mystery/thriller instead!
Though, to be honest, I didn't quite realize it at first because I was just reading it solely because I like the author and the way it began, with a heavy-drinking newspaperman who's absolutely in love with Lewis Carroll's better fiction and the theory that Caroll (the real man behind the pseudonym, the mathematician) hadn't written his works so much as he had proved and visited those realms in reality and he was just reporting the facts.
Our favorite drunkard begins his quest to find the Jabberwocky. :)
It starts out like a great adventure tale where the hero is super blitzed and yet tries so hard to succeed in this damnably difficult quest, driving around (mind you, this is 1950,) breaking into places, picking up weird Carroll friends, and generally freaking himself out with all the strange coincidences cropping up all over the place.
I admit that it took me a bit to get into the book, but by the midpoint, I was totally hooked and kinda freaked about the social weirdness of THIS MUCH HARD LIQUOR. :)
The second half of the novel keeps him quite as blitzed as the first, but this time he's embroiled in murders and he's apparently the prime perp. Again, I'm amazed he's survived this long even when he was just roaming the countryside looking for an imaginary beasty, and yet it gets better.
Because Charles Lutwidge Dodgson was, after all, a great mathematician, and was able to do some pretty wild stuff with his wild maths, it turns out that his number-one-fan is able to intuitively grasp the weird-ass plot against him and solve the case. (Also while drunk.) :)
What can I say? I'm pretty stoked. This novel snuck up on me and I lost my head snickity-snack. :) Vorpal blade! :)
View all my reviews