Best of the Year: Locus, Village Voice, San Francisco Chronicle, Book Magazine
Nominated for the Impac Award
Charley is an athlete. He wants to grow up to be the fastest runner in the world, like his father. He wants to be painted crossing the finishing line, in his racing silks, with a medal around his neck. Charley lives in a stable. He isn't a runner, he's a mount. He belongs to a Hoot: The Hoots are alien invaders. Charley hasn't seen his mother for years, and his father is hiding out in the mountains somewhere, with the other Free Humans. The Hoots own the world, but the humans want it back. Charley knows how to be a good mount, but now he's going to have to learn how to be a human being.
|Publisher:||Penguin Young Readers Group|
|Product dimensions:||4.30(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.62(d)|
|Age Range:||12 - 16 Years|
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
We're not against you, we're for. In fact we're built for you and you for us--we, so our weak little legs will dangle on your chest and our tail down the back. Exactly as you so often transport your own young when they are weak and small. It's a joy. Just like a mother-walk.
You'll be free. You'll have a pillow. You'll have a water faucet and a bookcase. We'll pat you if you do things fast enough and don't play hard to catch. We'll rub your legs and soak your feet. Sams and Sues, and you Sams had better behave yourselves.
You still call us aliens in spite of the fact that we've been on your world for generations. And why call aliens exactly those who've brought health and happiness to you? And look how well we fit, you and us. As if born for each other even though we come from different worlds.
We mate the stocky with the stocky, the thin with the thin, the pygmy with the pygmy. You've done a fairly good job with that yourselves before we came. As to skin, we like a color a little on the reddish side. Freckles are third best.
Your type is called a Seattle. I hope to find other Seattles to mate with you, and soon.
Your young will stay with their mothers until weaning. We'll stroke them all over to make them love us. Four months is the crucial time for imprinting you predators. And your young do love us. You all do. We're the ones with the treats. Leather straps will help keep you in line and help us keep our seat. There will sometimes be prickers on our toes. How and if these are used, and when, depends, of course, on you.
You are the recipient of our kindness, our wealth and knowledge, our intelligence, our good growth of greens. Without usyou'd not exist. Remember that. Though it's true a few of you still survive in the mountains. We care nothing for mountains. What can you grow in the mountains that's not better grown in the valleys? Or build?
There is no need for you, or any of you, to learn how to count. And why read? We like you well-muscled. Reading is not conducive to muscles. We prefer that you hook yourself to the go-round instead.
My offspring will be pleased with you. They already know good lines: Slope of shoulders, rise of chest, slim waist, more so in your females. And, and most important, sturdy legs. Legs are what we're taught to notice first. Hands last. Compared to ours, your hands are so small and weak. Then there's the look in the eye. You should have a kind eye. Many things depend on such knowledge, or else there would be more danger than there already always is.
Our young adore you. They even adore your straps and buckles. They keep your pictures above where they curl up. They hang your worn-out shoes over their doorways. They save apples for you that they feed you piece-by-piece--and strawberries and chocolate.
As we go along on your shoulders, head to head (so sweetly!), cheek to cheek, our sun hats cover you also, and our rain hats. Some of us whisper our most secret secrets into your ear as we go.
Table of Contents
|The Paganini of Jacob's Gully|
|One Part of the Self is Always Tall and Dark|
|It Comes from Deep Inside|
|Prejudice and Pride|
|Report to the Men's Club|
|Venus Rising Nose|
What People are Saying About This
I've been a fan of Carol Emshwiller's since the wonderful Carmen Dog. The
Mount is a terrific novel, at once an adventure story and a meditation on
the psychology of freedom and slavery. It's literally haunting (days after
finishing it, I still think about all the terrible poetry of the Hoot/Sam
relationship) and hypnotic. I'm honored to have gotten an early look at it.
author of Carter Beats the Devil
We are all Mounts and so should read this book like an instruction manual
that could help save our lives. That it is also a beautiful funny novel is
the usual bonus you get by reading Carol Emshwiller. She always writes them
-- Kim Stanley Robinson, author of The Years of Rice and Salt
Carol Emshwiller's The Mount is a wicked book. Like Harlan Ellison's darkest
visions, Emshwiller writes in a voice that reminds us of the golden season
when speculative fiction was daring and unsettling. Our world suddenly seems
wrought with terrible ironies and a severe kind of beauty. When we are the
mounts, who -- or what -- is riding us?
author of Six Kinds of Sky
This novel is like a tesseract, I started it and thought, ah, I see what
she's doing. But then the dimensions unfolded and somehow it ended up being
about so much more.
author of Nekropolis
I've loved everything Carol Emshwiller has ever written, but in her new
novel, The Mount, she outdoes herself. This story of mounts and riders has
so much to say about slaves and masters, humans and animals, parents and
children, cruelty and kindness‹and about tunnel vision and tricks and tears
and society and history and the world‹that it¹s impossible to believe she¹s
gotten it into one small, simple, unforgettable book. A true original by a
author of Passage
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Usually, novels that present themselves as allegories in an explicit way do not appeal to me. The Mount, though, has a careful, acerbic, magnanimous wit that transcends the limitations of that particular mode. It is one of the goofiest, but gravest, examinations of power and power dynamics I've read.
One of the very best sci-fi books I have ever read.