Extract from my real-time review HERE.
From “The one notable exception” to “Even the ones you supposedly loved.”
“…playing out your endless power games, that you managed to trample everyone else.”
This is one Hell of a book. Teasing me just as vigorously as I am teasing it. Or teasing him, that Lewis bloke playing the ‘endless power games’. Now incrementally an authority figure (following a Mayoral election plotted in the Chestnut Garden (cf David Cameron’s Rose Garden appearance with Nick Clegg), an election, no doubt, similar to the very strange Mayoral election going on at this very moment between Ken Livingstone & Boris Johnson in an increasingly Olymp-mythic London), not black and/or white (literally as well as figuratively), allowing us to be embroiled in creating Paul Dent the new Winston Smith: who is in fact, obversely, creating us in return? Lewis and Paul: symbiotic? But who the host and who the parasite in such a (mis-)synergy? And a Revolution: an essential miscegenate Revolution from the ultimate role-playing about the American Civil War in artistic Struwwelpeter-Screwpine retrospect for which only reading the previous Hirshberg books that I’ve recently experienced for the first time can fully prepare you. All of this, for me, ties in very well with things in my long on-going philosophy (things, as a Hawler, I’ve often droned on about on-line for many years) about ‘Fiction as Religion’ and ‘”Magic Fiction” as opposed to Magic Realism’ and the ‘Synchronised Shards of Random Truth and Fiction’, and ‘Hawling’ (cf the pulley depot in the Bunk book earlier) and 'Nemonymity' etc etc (please google these terms, if you wish.) This is a major event for me, my reading this book. As it will be for you, I hope, even without the need for you to philosophise about its Creative Aesthetics! It is a SF Fantasy masquerading as a Literary Masterpiece of an Alternate World skewed Mainstream in turn masquerading as Zola-esque Naturalism as if written by Scott Fitzgerald! But we’re not finished yet. Things could still change. (7 Apr 12 – 9.40 am bst)