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The Zen Gun (1983)

by Barrington J. Bayley

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1145192,475 (3.12)6
Pout, the chimera, half-man, half-ape, was incorporated into one of the plants or vice versa. He was jammed into a squatting position, while the stems, entering at his buttocks, merged with his legs, his arms and his torso, emerging at knees, elbows, and through his abdomen and thorax. A large, yellow-petalled flower seemed to frame his face. It was his face that rivetted Ikematsu's attention, while the chimera squirmed in dumb distress, glaring with huge piteous eyes. For in that face, set into it as if set in pudding, was the zen gun. The gun was his face, or a part of it. The barrel pointed straight out in place of a nose... the stock merged with and disappeared into Pout's pendulous mouth. Ikematsu leaned toward the chimera. "How you loved your toy Now it is truly yours "… (more)
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» See also 6 mentions

English (4)  Swedish (1)  All languages (5)
Showing 4 of 4
A whimsical tale of a a strange future where Man is Outnumbered by uplifted animals ( )
  Caragen87 | Dec 31, 2008 |
There's good science fiction and then there's bad science fiction. Unfortunately The Zen Gun belongs in the latter category. The story is a mixture of all sorts of ideas: genetic engineering, an intergalactic empire in decline, talking animals, a strange zen gun with an ominous purpose...

There's plenty of imaginative space opera action and it all moves pretty swiftly, but at the same time the whole story is confusing and bounces from place to place. Parts of The Zen Gun are pertty good, but the most of it doesn't really work that well.

Add to that some very bizarre and boring pseudoscientific lectures on the nature of the universe and you'll end up with a fairly pointless book. I recommend skipping this one; if you decide to read it, fortunately it's very short. (Review based on the Finnish translation.)

(Original review at my review blog.) ( )
  msaari | Aug 19, 2007 |
Barrington Bayley’s SF is the kind of writing that would appeal to both a taste for old-fashioned action-oriented Space Opera and New Wave mind-trips that border on the surreal. The Zen Gun is a tale of galactic rebellion with Luke, Leia, and Darth Vader replaced by eccentric hippies and talking animals. They are living in a universe where there are lots of Forces, not all of them benign.

http://fireandsword.blogspot.com/2007/06/zen-gun-by-barrington-bayley-barrington...
  DaveHardy | Jul 12, 2007 |
Showing 4 of 4
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Barrington J. Bayleyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Freas, KellyCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Around the blue, green and white planet, Ten-Fleet disposed itself with a suddenness that was intentionally frightening.
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Pout, the chimera, half-man, half-ape, was incorporated into one of the plants or vice versa. He was jammed into a squatting position, while the stems, entering at his buttocks, merged with his legs, his arms and his torso, emerging at knees, elbows, and through his abdomen and thorax. A large, yellow-petalled flower seemed to frame his face. It was his face that rivetted Ikematsu's attention, while the chimera squirmed in dumb distress, glaring with huge piteous eyes. For in that face, set into it as if set in pudding, was the zen gun. The gun was his face, or a part of it. The barrel pointed straight out in place of a nose... the stock merged with and disappeared into Pout's pendulous mouth. Ikematsu leaned toward the chimera. "How you loved your toy Now it is truly yours "

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