Monday, October 31, 2005

Someone you might like

I just started Connie Willis's To Say Nothing of the Dog. Willis has a Lethem like ability to hop styles and topics between books, from happy to sad, from distant past to current. She is more or less a sci-fi writer, as her books feature some kind of sci-fi element. So does Margaret Atwood, sci-fi haters, so give her a chance.

This one is more or less madcap. An English historian recruited by a rich American is sent into the past on a series of misadventures. The fun is in her dialogue and comic descriptions. It's amazing that this is the same woman who wrote the Doomsday Book, one of the biggest bummers of all time. In that one another time travelling historian gets dropped in medieval England just before the Plague arrives. Then she can't get back. You can guess what comes next. The only downside to Willis is her verbosity. She tends to write doorstoppers, so you will be investing some time.

Speaking of the Doomsday Book, I saw a copy of the Domesday book at Powell's. As you probably recall from school this is a detailed census of England in 1086. It was about as exciting as it sounds. Giving this to the spouse will earn you the coveted you're-not-getting-laid-tonight award. Like you were gonna get some anyway.

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