All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Or to put it in milder terms, "I just got ran over by a mac truck."
This novel is just too important to miss, whether or not you're into SF or Fantasy, because it is both. It's a long and delightful and REAL conversation between the two, a heartfelt exploration and a synthesis, a heartbreaking tale and a true wonderment of fiction.
I guess I kinda liked it.
It's a lot more than a magical realism novel, and it's no experiment. There's nothing unreadable about it and it doesn't have tons of clever word adornments. From the start we're thrown into a futuristic society and a world full of fairytale (or birdlike) magic, and we follow Laurence and Patricia in a long-entwined tale of equal proportions and dialogue, their uneasy alliance, their estrangement, and finally, their enduring love.
This is all about us, the readers, too. Science Fiction and Fantasy have gone through rough patches, denigrating each other, running from each other, saying spiteful things to each other, but in the end, we're so much more alike than anything else can be in the universe. So whether you're a cyborg or a wizard, know one thing: We Are All The Same, and We Are Loved.
Did I say this was a true book? It goes way beyond just this dialogue. I feel the heart of it pumping and changing the universe. It's my New Favorite Book, and it's not so much strange and powerful as it is deeply and profoundly hopeful, and by everything that's holy, I appreciate that.
I bawled tears of joy and horror, people. No joke. I sat in my chair and couldn't read from all the sobs.
From the very start, the first hook, I knew I was going to want to savour this novel, and I did. I'm likely going to re-read it many times and be filled with amazement and hope and joy, even as I cringe at the young years or feel the Fear coming for the adult years.
It's brilliant and if there's any justice in the universe, this novel needs to be one that Endures.
And by the way, this is already on my Hugo Picks for 2016.
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