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Light
     

Light

4.3 27
by M. John Harrison
 

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ISBN-10: 0553587331

ISBN-13: 2900553587332

Pub. Date: 05/01/2007

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group

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

Overview

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.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
2900553587332
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
05/01/2007
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
432

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Light 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read the whole book to find out what it was about and was very dissatisfied with the entire book. Difficult to read, and lacks direction while it jumps around.
TEST NOOKUSER More than 1 year ago
Harrison is an incredible talent, with perhaps the strongest command of the english language of any writer living. He is definitely the most vividly visual writer going, and his characters are satisfyingly human, all of them mad, broken, and learning. This is perhaps Harrisons most accessible work, and all around entertaining.
PhoenixFalls More than 1 year ago
This is a difficult novel. Harrison's prose is meaty, but that is not where the difficulty lies; his characters are unlikeable, and while that is a challenge, it is not insurmountable. The main difficulty lies in the novel's structure -- much of it is an elaborate smoke screen, ultimately having little to no effect on the resolution. This also makes the novel particularly difficult to review, as its true nature doesn't become evident until the last four chapters, but any mention of what is in those chapters (and what is in those chapters will make or break the novel for most readers) constitutes a giant spoiler. Alas, I am committed to writing reviews that are as spoiler-free as possible, so I will focus on what the novel focuses on, which is that smoke screen. The novel consists of alternating chapters from three perspectives, two sociopaths and one junkie. All three are running from something, and most of the novel is spent figuring out what they are running from and what turned them into sociopaths/junkies. In this sense the novel is akin to a character study, and I suspect it will work best for those people who generally like character studies. (I am one of those people, but I will admit it didn't work particularly well for me in this aspect because I'm not a big fan of sociopaths and junkies.) One perspective is set in contemporary England & America, with just enough detail to be immediately recognizable, and the other two are set in 2400 A.D., which is a future with plenty of SF world-building that Harrison spends very little time describing -- the world is catch-as-you-can, and readers who aren't used to hard SF will likely be hopelessly confused at points while readers who are used to these sort of milieus will be able to fill in the blanks fairly easily. There is some action, but most of the novel is spent getting into these peoples' heads. But at its heart, and despite the first 350 pages, Light isn't a character study. It's a Big Idea story, and its Big Idea is what constitutes the spoiler, so I have to talk around it. The jacket description actually does as much as it can to help readers to that Big Idea -- it doesn't describe the set-up and first act like most jacket descriptions, but instead provides clues to the elements astute readers need to keep track of in order to decipher the resolution. That resolution will determine whether the novel succeeds or fails for most readers, so anyone who attempts this novel needs to be prepared to read it to the end to give it a fair shot, and unfortunately even reading to the end will not guarantee that you will like it. Ultimately, I decided I did not like the resolution Harrison provides, but I get it, and I can see why other people love it, and I will defend his pure craft that went into making this book. This is the rare novel I will recommend despite not having enjoyed it.
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Guest More than 1 year ago
Harrison lays out a complex tale that is actually three separate stories. Though the three stories span significant space and time, Harrison smartly ties them all together to provide a very satisfying ending. There are moments when he sheds light on why someone might commit the most heinous of acts and be able to fully rationalize them. Everyone has a part to play in the complexity of our universe and M. John Harrison picks fallen angels and the never do wells to tell a riveting story.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The best part of this book is the cover art, which is spectacular. Once you crack the cover, the writing doesn't flow smoothly and it is almost impossible to track the author as he leaps from subject to subject.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was our book club selection based on the recommendation of Neil Gaiman on the front. No one in the book club read the book through to the end, I still have 120 pages to read and still am not sure what it is about. It is like trying to read 3 separate stories that the author tried to tie together and never really managed to do. Good luck if you choose this book, maybe you can make sense of it.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1999, research scientists Michael Kearney and Brian Tate work to encode data in quantum events. Recent results are not what they expected, but look more promising than they imagined when they started. However, Michael is turning psychotic, as an internal essence pressures him to commit murder. In 2400 New Venusport, Ed Chianese daily struggles to survive with his only solace being virtual reality escapes unlike his former glory days of surfing black holes. However, his woes turn bleaker with no escape available when it seems as if half the city wants a piece of him because he owes money to the wrong lenders. Several years since the Golddiggers of 2400 AD, White Cat Captain Seria Mau Genlicher is linked directly to the mathematics of her spaceship as if her mind is the vessel¿s AI. On the run, she has problems with her new woman body and her tailor Uncle Zip offers little help.---- The woes of these three and other losers will ¿merge¿ in a quantum realm at the 'Beach', a segment of space abutting the impenetrable Kefahuchi Tract. Here nothing works properly and space debris and the occasional treasure exist, many from before the beginnings of time.---- Ironically LIGHT is a dark gritty tale told predominately on three fronts. The story line is not a Star Wars action thriller (even with plenty of violence), but instead a complex cerebral and gloomy science fiction with prime players seemingly doomed to tragic lives. Paradoxically Michael (and Tate) is recognized four centuries later as the fathers of interstellar space. Not everyone will enjoy this tense multifaceted novel that contrasts the intricacies of life past, present, and future.---- Harriet Klausner
erzulieloo More than 1 year ago
brilliant.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Here.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
MISTY AND I HAVE TO DUEL OVER CABIN LEADER! OH BTW ITS HALEY! WOULD U GUYS BE OK IF I WAS LEADER?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Here
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This little girl came up and hugged me she said i was in her dream hile hewas getting surgery i cried
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yeah, your half brother, Griff. Disgusting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Any one on
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Grabs the cube and throws it at scourge
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vote for me as prom king please. - Dashkoff
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Idk who misty is so that must mean she hasnt been in the cabin longer than bales of hay (hayley) so.......I VOTE FOR ME!!!!!! jk i vote for hayley