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Light by M. John Harrison

Light (original 2002; edition 2007)

by M. John Harrison

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1,585506,679 (3.44)51
Authors:M. John Harrison
Info:Spectra (2007), Mass Market Paperback, 432 pages
Collections:Your library

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Light by M. John Harrison (2002)


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English (47)  French (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (49)
Showing 1-5 of 47 (next | show all)
Sadly, this did nothing for me, and eventually I stopped reading it. I made several stabs at it, each time it felt like a brand new book because the characters had made so little impact on me I'd forgotten I'd read about them previously. Sadly, it never felt like a brand new engaging book. There's a sort of dry, clinical SF (a style something like Barnes' Mother of Storms) that I generally have trouble with, and this feels like that. Descriptions without empathy, just the surfaces of things--it's a tone that works well with some types of thrillers, say, but not here. I hate giving things up, but if you aren't enjoying them after a considerable investment (your age in pages), it's time to switch.

(Note: 5 stars = amazing, wonderful, 4 = very good book, 3 = decent read, 2 = disappointing, 1 = awful, just awful. I'm fairly good at picking for myself so end up with a lot of 4s).
( )
  ashleytylerjohn | Sep 19, 2018 |
I was here once before, but that was in a different life, a life where I was only a reader, not a writer of science fiction. Now I see the Kefahuchi Tract with new eyes. The fantastic details, magical, metaphorical physics, and techno-poetic prose are dazzling, bringing to life within me a jealous monster. Harrison tows some of his suns into Radio Bay with alien technology. I use a devil to move stars into my Cluster. Harrison says, “suddenly everything was out of the bag: every idea anyone had ever had about the universe was available, operating, and present.” That is my “spiritual universe”, my “heaven.” So, sometimes we think the same thoughts, but his language is light-years ahead of mine. But as the Shrander says, “Don’t be naive, Steady Eddy. You can’t stay still in this life. You go on or you go down. What’ll it be?” It’ll be, read more of Harrison’s books, follow his ion trail. ( )
1 vote drardavis | Aug 27, 2018 |
3 1/2 stars
  tsgood | Jul 10, 2018 |
A brilliant novel with a fractal plot. It's rich with poetry and dream logic. You have to stop forcing into novel shape and go for the ride. This is really 4.5 stars for me, and I only take the 0.5 off for a minor issue I had with the conclusion. ( )
  andrlik | Apr 24, 2018 |
This review is written with a GPL 4.0 license and the rights contained therein shall supersede all TOS by any and all websites in regards to copying and sharing without proper authorization and permissions. Crossposted at WordPress, Blogspot & Librarything by Bookstooge’s Exalted Permission

Title: Light
Series: Kefahuchi Tract #1
Author: M. John Harrison
Rating: 1 of 5 Stars
Genre: SF
Pages: 432
Format: Digital edition


So much purposeful distortion that I'm not even going to bother to try to put up a synopsis. Trash like this isn't worth it.

My Thoughts:

I wasted my time reading this bloody piece of bolluxy crap.

The author is a clever fellow. You can tell because he's always having his characters do drugs, have sex and vomit. Nothing speaks more cleverly than multiple times of vomiting. Even as I'm typing I'm vomiting, on the floor, so that this review will be so much more cleverer.

I was expecting a real SF story. What I got was some pretentious wanker's drug induced hallucinogenic anal excretions.

This is the kind of writing that I would expect a brainless Oscar/Emmy/Whatever Winner to nod sagely about and say something along the lines of * insert typical hollywood soundbyte blather * or some Literati to talk about its 77 different layered meanings to each of us. In other words, total bs.

To close, this book brought me close to Patrick Rothfuss levels of rage.

★☆☆☆☆ ( )
1 vote BookstoogeLT | Dec 9, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 47 (next | show all)
Contextualizing Harrison's approach to SF generally more than a review of any given book, and to the Viriconium series more than to books not part of that series. Nevertheless, he reminds readers of Harrison's quote on world-building as "the great clomping foot of nerdism" and derides it as destructive more than constructive.

Harrison's own books, the Viriconium sequence, are in his own words, "a theory about the power-structures culture is designed to hide; an allegory of language, how it can only fail; the statement of a philosophical (not to say ethological) despair." But he doesn't want them to be read for the "furniture" of the world so he makes sure that the reader can never grasp it. Viriconium has an evershifting description – there is setting but no continuity. He makes sure that "you can't read it for that stuff and so you have to read it for everything else."

» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
M. John Harrisonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Moore, ChrisCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tervaharju, HannuTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Youll, StephenCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Towards the end of things, someone asked Michael Kearney, "How do you see yourself spending the first minute of the new millennium?"
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553587331, Mass Market Paperback)

In M. John Harrison’s dangerously illuminating new novel, three quantum outlaws face a universe of their own creation, a universe where you make up the rules as you go along and break them just as fast, where there’s only one thing more mysterious than darkness.

In contemporary London, Michael Kearney is a serial killer on the run from the entity that drives him to kill. He is seeking escape in a future that doesn’ t yet exist—a quantum world that he and his physicist partner hope to access through a breach of time and space itself. In this future, Seria Mau Genlicher has already sacrificed her body to merge into the systems of her starship, the White Cat. But the “inhuman” K-ship captain has gone rogue, pirating the galaxy while playing cat and mouse with the authorities who made her what she is. In this future, Ed Chianese, a drifter and adventurer, has ridden dynaflow ships, run old alien mazes, surfed stellar envelopes. He “went deep”—and lived to tell about it. Once crazy for life, he’s now just a twink on New Venusport, addicted to the bizarre alternate realities found in the tanks—and in debt to all the wrong people.

Haunting them all through this maze of menace and mystery is the shadowy presence of the Shrander—and three enigmatic clues left on the barren surface of an asteroid under an ocean of light known as the Kefahuchi Tract: a deserted spaceship, a pair of bone dice, and a human skeleton.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:38 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Michael Kearney, a British scientist, and his American partner, Brian Tate, unknowingly become the fathers of interplanetary travel while studying laboratory quantum physics. Kearney is also a serial killer who is on the run from the entity that drives him to kill.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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