Friday, April 4, 2014
Fic Rec: Little Faces by Vonda McIntyre; Free Books from Angry Robot
The "little faces" of Vonda McIntyre's story are "companions," ostensibly parasites that exist within the body of a race of female humans (humanoids?). Each one is valued and loved by its host, as they contain the memories and genetic code of past lovers.
There's some strange sex going on in McIntyre's story, and that's the tip of the iceberg. McIntyre has creatively envisioned a universe in which people exist in partnership with organic "ships," which provide them with their individual homes and everything a person could want, from furnishings to sustenance to clothing. A fairly solitary existence, which may span many, many millenia, they do form friendships with others, take lovers, have social gatherings, etc. It is the morning after one such coupling, and Yalnis has awoken to blood: her primary companion has been slain while she slept, by the companion of one who she took into her bed.
Little Faces never loses its sense of oddness, of a totally foreign place, and the immersive details continue to ripple outward as the story progresses, until the reader is so entrenched in this place, that it's difficult to imagine that it doesn't exist, after all.
The story could be a metaphor for women's social interactions in the present time, or it could simply be a brilliant SF tale unlike any you've read before. I'll go with the latter.
Angry Robots, in conjunction with SFX Magazine, is offering two free books this month: Lauren Beuke's Zoo City and Adam Christopher's Empire State. As I've already read ZC, I picked up the e-pub version of ES, which came out last May and has been on my wishlist ever since. If you haven't read ZC, it's pretty damn cool.
You can find out how to get them here.
As a sidenote, SFX Magazine has Jon Snow and Dany on the cover (well, the actors...), and I've just picked up HBO again and have been catching up on my rewatch of GoT, and it's hard to concentrate on anything else when OMG GAME OF THRONES IS BACK ON SUNDAY!