Brenda Cooper

Reading Recommendation: (R)evolution by PJ Manny

revolutionSo I’m on a quest to listen to the other PKD finalist’s books, particularly the authors who I’ve never met. I’d read them but I don’t have time – I’ve been sadly turning down requests from good friends to read their books, and I even have favorite authors whose books make me consistently and reliably happy lying untouched on my TBR pile.  So I’m consuming the PKD nominated books via Audible on my commute and when I walk the dogs, and I probably won’t get through all five before the award. So keep in mind that I don’t know how they look on the page.

I just finished (R)evolution and I wanted to hop online and recommend it.

PJ’s novel is fast paced, almost breathless at points.  She has a lot of complex relationships, twists and turns, and some memorable and completely over-the-top characters (I particularly liked Ruth). The book would make a great movie — so maybe with luck she’ll sell the rights for that. There were a few times I had to swallow a bit of dis-belief, but I think that often happens when writing about the future. I didn’t mind.

PJ really did a nice job hitting the tropes about transhumanism without lecturing – (R)evolution was such a well-told story that by the end I was wanting to come up with reasons to jump in the car and keep driving.

Exploring the ethics of the future is an important thing that good science fiction does well, and that this book did well.

I’m also intrigued that at east three of us wrote transhumanist books.  PJ has a transhumanist hero, I have them as kind of villains and kind of heroes (its complicated), and Ramez pretty much turned almost everybody transhuman in the course of his series, and then shows how that might work.  All three books are very different one from another. All three are hopeful.

I recommend all three if just for the different approaches to the same topic…I already recommended Apex (Ramez Naam’s nominated book) but readers would do best to start with the first book and read the whole trilogy — that’s Nexus, Crux, and Apex.

Now, I’m off to start listening to Marguerite Reed’s Archangel. I’ll let you know if it’s also about transhumanism.

PS – remember that you can enter to win your own copy of all six nominated books.