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Author Topic: Debatable Space by Philip Palmer  (Read 2100 times)


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Debatable Space by Philip Palmer
« on: September 15, 2008, 12:41:34 pm »

Okay, it's not libertarian fiction, as such.  Given the reading experience quality of much liblit (excluding my own, of course) I've come to think of this as a feature rather than a bug - especially for escapist reading.

It's got pirates.
It's got E. E. (Doc) Smith's-wet-dreams space battles.
It's got an ultimately evil galactic emperor.
It's got the emperor's 1,000-year-old (and very, very hot) mother, who's more than a bit conflicted about her maternal feelings.
It's got a planetary utopia that depends on a galactic hell.
It's got flame beasts that will contract with you for a century-long methodical blood vendetta against you and all your friends and family, should you break a vow.
It's got revolutions that work.  It's got revolutions that don't.
It's got the mother of all disfunctional families.  Seriously, these people make the Harkonens look like the Cleavers.
Did I mention pirates?  Because it's got pirates.

It's not five-star fiction.  It's a first novel.  The plot wanders into the weeds and plays with its toes at times.  It's got sections of backstory that go on and on and...  The hero, toward the end, pulls salvation out of his ass with no foreshadowing.  It can't make up its mind when - or whether - it wants to be funny, and when it's dark it's hellishly dark.  Not all the characters work at all.  Yeah.  It ain't classic Heinlein.  Comments in Amazon skewer it, and most of them are fair.

But in the end, all things considered, well... The rulers are all really evil, the heroes are...less evil, and I rather enjoyed it as a weekend read.  You might, too.

Oops!  Linky!
« Last Edit: September 15, 2008, 12:43:12 pm by Joel »
Yet another Freedomista blog: The Ultimate Answer to Kings is not a bullet, but a belly laugh.
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