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Marilee J. Layman

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04:38 pm: Asimov's August 2007
I didn't read the primary story because even though I like Bruce Sterling's work, I don't read Rudy Rucker and they co-wrote.

There were a number of okay stories in this issue, but the only one I really liked was Kathleen Ann Goonan's The Bridge. An odd woman comes to a private detective in Arlington who is still using non-nano technology. She wants him to do something and eventually he has to enter DC, which is a foggy zone of nanos. He's affected by the nanos and it changes him and how he solves her question. Very well-written.

There is a second novelette that I didn't enjoy as such, being mostly about Victorian seagoing, but the other thread was interesting. This is The Mists of Time by Tom Purdom. The descendant of the Victorian sea captain gives a grant to a time-travel company to make a recording of his ancestor's famous battle and capture of a slaver. He doesn't like the videoist they hired since she talks from the beginning of how the sailors are paid bounty for slaves, and pays more to go with her in the time bubble and make his personal recording.

The reason this was interesting to me was that when the bookgroup read Brave New World, I pointed out that it was very sexist and one of the guys said "That's just the time." Well, sure, but so was classism and he was satirizing that and not sexism, so he thought it was okay. The guy said again that it was just the time. Well, The Mists of Time has the second thread where the descendant saw it all from the time bubble as his ancestor's glory and the videoist saw it as mercenary and predatory, since the British sailors kept copping feels from the female slaves (the time bubble has to leave before we see the journey to port and any more depradations). It reminded me of the bookgroup discussion.



[User Picture]
Date:July 28th, 2007 07:12 pm (UTC)
You don't read Rudy Rucker -- was there something in particular that was the last straw for you, or is it that you've tried enough of his work and just don't care for it?

For example, there are a few authors that I'm done with, often because they write the same book over and over, and I don't really need to read them again. Bob Asprin was one of the first of these for me; Orson Scott Card is another (those darn messiah novels).
[User Picture]
Date:July 28th, 2007 07:48 pm (UTC)
He did something to me that made me freeze him out. Back when I volunteered for OMNI on AOL, I frequently typed for our guests in the "auditorium." I can type as fast as people talk, and I can make it look like they sound.

We invited Rucker to guest and he said okay and we had AOL ship him the software. He said he couldn't get it installed. Half the general population in the US can install AOL software and Rucker can't? So we offered to get him help and he said he'd rather not. This is where we should have figured out he didn't want to do the interview, but we then offered for me to type. He would call me so I didn't have his phone number. Well, the night came, he called, and while we were on the phone, he made a sandwich, watched Jeopardy (I knew more answers than he did), and used the bathroom. We could have handled a break -- we did it all the time with other guests since it is an hour interview -- but did he ask? No, he used the bathroom while on the phone with me. I know this isn't as insulting to other people as it is to me, but it's enough that I don't read him anymore.
[User Picture]
Date:July 28th, 2007 08:17 pm (UTC)
Oh, dear. How twitlike of him.
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