The Incomparable

147: Space Fish

 

  this episode is sponsored by audible the [TS]

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  the interoperable number 147 jun 2013 [TS]

  welcome back to be uncomfortable i am [TS]

  your host Jason snow and we are back [TS]

  with another edition of our book club [TS]

  with what I have to say our are perhaps [TS]

  the core members of the book club [TS]

  although we have many who come and go [TS]

  and serenity Caldwell's a lot of them [TS]

  there's a voice in this episode that we [TS]

  haven't had with us for some time [TS]

  because he's been a very busy fellow but [TS]

  he read the assigned reading and so we [TS]

  allowed him back on the podcast why so [TS]

  is tia is not Dan more dan did you do [TS]

  the assigned reading like most of it [TS]

  alright i'll allow you back on the [TS]

  podcast because you haven't been on at [TS]

  least 24 hours [TS]

  Scott McNulty also quite often he's on [TS]

  every book club because he's read every [TS]

  book hi Scott [TS]

  hello I wasn't on every book club i did [TS]

  not appear in the harry potter episode [TS]

  i'm not sure that he encounters a book [TS]

  club that was more of a phenomenon club [TS]

  as it were and I despise it [TS]

  and of course i was speaking earlier of [TS]

  Glen fleischmann who is a friend of the [TS]

  podcast and is frequently on but haven't [TS]

  been on for a little while michael and [TS]

  welcome back [TS]

  hello oh wait that's not me hi hi there [TS]

  alloy that has mr. McNulty lawyer I have [TS]

  to ask you to cease and desist on any [TS]

  hello [TS]

  that's that's it the this podcast is [TS]

  over [TS]

  alright so we're going to do a with two [TS]

  topics on the podcast this time [TS]

  first we're going to do a book club [TS]

  about john scalzi is recently published [TS]

  novel the human division which is [TS]

  interesting in that it was published [TS]

  first as a weekly series of ebook [TS]

  installments and then later wrapped up [TS]

  into a regular old-fashioned book that [TS]

  was published not too long ago and then [TS]

  we're going to shift gears and talk a [TS]

  little bit about the hugo nominees for [TS]

  for short stories so for not not the not [TS]

  the novel's we're going to do that on a [TS]

  later show and we've been dutifully [TS]

  plowing through those nominees and and [TS]

  we'll get that in a few weeks but we're [TS]

  going to talk about short stories [TS]

  tonight instead so a little littlie will [TS]

  to Part A two act play if you will of [TS]

  the book club so we should get started [TS]

  with john scalzi we covered him before [TS]

  we talked about [TS]

  we talked about his books numerous times [TS]

  we talked about his novel redshirts last [TS]

  year and he's back with this interesting [TS]

  experiment of a serialize novel the [TS]

  human division set in the same world as [TS]

  his most i would say that we the thing [TS]

  that made him well known the old man's [TS]

  war University wrote he wrote four [TS]

  novels in that universe and and he's [TS]

  back with these tales of humans in a in [TS]

  a big wide world or galaxy full of [TS]

  different aliens many of whom are quite [TS]

  threatening to the humans so for my [TS]

  first question for you guys is how did [TS]

  you read this did you read it in an [TS]

  installment basis every week [TS]

  did you save them up and read them in a [TS]

  couple of bursts or did you wait for the [TS]

  for it to be a novel and read it as a [TS]

  whole I i kinda win some of the middle I [TS]

  i would read a couple of them like when [TS]

  they came out i think i read the first [TS]

  since I i pre-ordered it so you got a [TS]

  initial installment which was released [TS]

  later for everybody else who bought the [TS]

  whole thing that after the coup which is [TS]

  sort of like a prologue and so I read [TS]

  that and then like months later when the [TS]

  human division start to come out i would [TS]

  read like 10 maybe one or two and then [TS]

  I'll probably forget for a couple weeks [TS]

  and then sometimes every two or three to [TS]

  stretch depending on I mean they're not [TS]

  very long right so you can get away with [TS]

  that right after the coup was was kind [TS]

  of like the prequel it was just a short [TS]

  story set in this world of old man's war [TS]

  right it's a little bit longer than the [TS]

  average but it turns out it it turns out [TS]

  that those are characters that he picks [TS]

  up and uses to in in most of the human [TS]

  division right and at least one Harry is [TS]

  is from earlier novels in this series [TS]

  he's really a supporting character in [TS]

  them [TS]

  yes I I kinda was somewhere in the [TS]

  middle there which means that every [TS]

  couple weeks when I would pick up the [TS]

  next installment i would think what [TS]

  happened in the last installment they [TS]

  need a previously on the human division [TS]

  right Scott what about you [TS]

  I was interested in reading it as it [TS]

  came out but i found it annoying it [TS]

  didn't happen i found it annoying that i [TS]

  had to buy them separately [TS]

  so I didn't do that and I waited until [TS]

  they were all together so I could read [TS]

  it in one fell swoop [TS]

  I know I wanted to subscribe to it and [TS]

  Amazon seem to just be incapable of that [TS]

  as a concept [TS]

  well no so amazon has something called [TS]

  kindle cereals which is exactly this [TS]

  idea that you subscribe to this like [TS]

  book and you get chapters automatically [TS]

  delivered the only problem with that of [TS]

  course is that Amazon then says if [TS]

  you're going to participate in the [TS]

  serials you can't sell it anywhere else [TS]

  yeah i think i think they also can't [TS]

  they can't set the price anything other [TS]

  than like 199 or some ridiculously low [TS]

  price too so they they were never going [TS]

  to do that and so instead you had to [TS]

  order pre-order every order when it came [TS]

  out every one of the thirteen chapters [TS]

  which I did what I thought was really [TS]

  stupid be great if we're living in an [TS]

  age when computers manage these things [TS]

  for its strange Glenn so how did you [TS]

  read this [TS]

  well I got confused because Oh Glenn [TS]

  it's a good to have you back you can see [TS]

  you can stop there Glenn it's cool i we [TS]

  gave it away so long this this world of [TS]

  yours so confusing after visiting other [TS]

  blends the red two of the old man's word [TS]

  for books in that University first two [TS]

  and this came up for the book club so [TS]

  like a human division and it was already [TS]

  completely out because I've had this [TS]

  kind of amnesia that goes with working [TS]

  ridiculously hard for months at a time I [TS]

  completely missed the fact this was [TS]

  published as as a serial so I read it as [TS]

  a straightforward thing I thought gosh [TS]

  this book is episodic but i kinda liked [TS]

  it and I thought oh this is great like [TS]

  he's simulating the notion of releasing [TS]

  stories one at a time that are [TS]

  self-contained and have a kind of you [TS]

  know cereal old movie narrative with [TS]

  ridiculous daring do and i kind of i [TS]

  read it differently like this was an [TS]

  experiment as a book and then I get to [TS]

  the end of like how but you know it [TS]

  didn't actually it spoil my enjoyment of [TS]

  the stories reading them all at once and [TS]

  not actually understanding they were [TS]

  intended to be released that way I [TS]

  thought it was a really great [TS]

  exploration of the form even without [TS]

  knowing it was released in pieces over [TS]

  four months that's very interesting to [TS]

  me because I read his blog and follow me [TS]

  on Twitter and it's like I was not it [TS]

  was like human division like 24-7 [TS]

  perfectly for like three months that [TS]

  it's interesting because I think to [TS]

  collinsport [TS]

  and you know you can read Dickens and [TS]

  you don't need to know the Dickens was [TS]

  writing those things in a serialize with [TS]

  newspaper but it does it just say [TS]

  something about the form i I'm [TS]

  fascinated by this experiment i think [TS]

  it's i think it's a great thing that he [TS]

  tried this I mean the this is similar to [TS]

  the people talking about there's this [TS]

  debate about whether you binge watch TV [TS]

  episodes right or whether you watch them [TS]

  one at a time and and whether a show is [TS]

  actually better stretched out over long [TS]

  periods of time or whether it's better [TS]

  in the short bursts and I I don't think [TS]

  there's one right answer and in the case [TS]

  of hands on the story [TS]

  yeah well and i was thinking i was [TS]

  talking to somebody was watching lost [TS]

  and I said it's one of my favorite shows [TS]

  I think it's great i think you might [TS]

  actually like it better because one of [TS]

  the big frustrations when people [TS]

  watching it [TS]

  yeah people complain about like they [TS]

  didn't answer my questions and all that [TS]

  but i think a lot of that was caught up [TS]

  in this you know that the show would be [TS]

  on and then it would be gone for months [TS]

  and then it would be on again for a [TS]

  little bit minutes gone for another you [TS]

  know eight months and and if you can [TS]

  just keep on going [TS]

  it's a little less frustrating at the [TS]

  same time it can kind of be exhausting [TS]

  so this was this was interesting in in [TS]

  that he tried to pace it out and [TS]

  although he sold up front because I i [TS]

  read him on his blog and read him on [TS]

  Twitter to he sold it is like a TV [TS]

  series and I think that's false i I [TS]

  don't think you can call this a TV [TS]

  series because a TV series doesn't just [TS]

  go away from all the main characters for [TS]

  an entire episode and he did that in [TS]

  this I mean it's fine but well yeah [TS]

  they're kinda like yeah they're kind of [TS]

  like those like one-off episode I mean [TS]

  it's hard because if you look at [TS]

  something like Game of Thrones or the [TS]

  wire there are episodes in which major [TS]

  characters do not appear but you always [TS]

  do have some sort of anchor right some [TS]

  of your characters are there yes right [TS]

  and these we really do just walk away [TS]

  from the main characters or their [TS]

  mentioned or something like that which [TS]

  is a little strange from the perspective [TS]

  of a TV series but I mean there are [TS]

  ontology series to write like you know [TS]

  you think of something like I mean get [TS]

  those tend to be even more decentralized [TS]

  if you think about something like a [TS]

  Twilight Zone er yeah there's no there's [TS]

  no through-line image anthology series i [TS]

  just i thought it was a little bit of a [TS]

  myth [TS]

  miss statement about what he was [TS]

  actually doing here but what's funny is [TS]

  you know people will talk about this as [TS]

  it was coming out and I did read it as [TS]

  it was coming week by week and people [TS]

  would get frustrated when the [TS]

  installment of that week didn't directly [TS]

  pick up on what had happened before I [TS]

  actually kinda found it kind of fun I [TS]

  like i said i thought it was sort of he [TS]

  shouldn't have said it was like a TV [TS]

  series we're literally every episode is [TS]

  going to be our little friends on the [TS]

  spaceship get into trouble which is [TS]

  certainly what he was setting up in the [TS]

  first couple of chapters but i liked a [TS]

  lot of the diversions and I like seeing [TS]

  how it obviously fed into the main story [TS]

  and I i kinda like the episodic nature [TS]

  of it in a you know it was it was fun to [TS]

  have that experience and to have those [TS]

  cliffhangers where I really did [TS]

  experience this novel / 12 or 13 weeks [TS]

  instead of in you know a week or so of [TS]

  reading it [TS]

  yeah it's a I mean I love serialize [TS]

  stuff i mean Jason of course you read a [TS]

  lot comic books which have a similar [TS]

  sort of going on right so I think I the [TS]

  thing I like about something like a [TS]

  serialize story when it comes to [TS]

  television or comic books is that [TS]

  there's often a sense and this is true [TS]

  too in like longer book series [TS]

  there's a sense of rewarding the reader [TS]

  you know over a long period of time so [TS]

  you know you watch a TV show and there's [TS]

  like something mentioned in the episode [TS]

  1 and it comes back you know it in like [TS]

  episode 12 and you feel like a little [TS]

  bit of like oh yeah I noticed that like [TS]

  oh good they got back to that right like [TS]

  and then that was the thing that [TS]

  frustrated so many people about lost [TS]

  they feel like ants were dropped and [TS]

  never picked up again so I like that [TS]

  there's in some ways even though this [TS]

  was released episodically there no i [TS]

  didn't feel like there was a maybe [TS]

  enough of that although it's hard to [TS]

  tell because you know I think maybe if I [TS]

  went back and read it all now straight [TS]

  through [TS]

  I would pick up on things that had been [TS]

  you know for sure earlier and there's [TS]

  definitely some stuff that like alludes [TS]

  to things you know there's clearly [TS]

  foreshadowing knows what he's doing but [TS]

  it's it's such a different scope because [TS]

  it's almost more like a miniseries right [TS]

  now Glenn said that he picked up on the [TS]

  episodic nature of that I was going to [TS]

  ask that question of if you read this as [TS]

  a novel not realizing how it originally [TS]

  been published [TS]

  would you would you notice [TS]

  well let me speak to that hypothetically [TS]

  from a practical standpoint [TS]

  yeah I i think it held together for me I [TS]

  mean I got somewhere through it i [TS]

  honestly didn't look it up and wonder I [TS]

  thought scalzi likes to play with the [TS]

  form of the novel and I actually thought [TS]

  at some point this was going to be a [TS]

  little red shirt be because the stuff [TS]

  that happens at points is so ludicrous [TS]

  and it's always you know it's always [TS]

  Harry is the left at the last second the [TS]

  timer counts down and then the ship [TS]

  blows a hatch he grabs the hatch and [TS]

  manages to ride it you know that kind of [TS]

  thing is like the the improbable miss of [TS]

  the MacGyver ish whatever all comes [TS]

  together in every episode so I thought [TS]

  at some level maybe he was going to show [TS]

  that there was a manipulation going on [TS]

  that was causing this kind of [TS]

  ridiculousness to happen I realize now [TS]

  these aren't the meta books this is just [TS]

  the way it's set up and stuff keeps [TS]

  happening these guys and they have to [TS]

  roll with the punches of sometimes [TS]

  really ridiculous plot elements but [TS]

  because its colors you get deeper than [TS]

  just the you know oh no here's a [TS]

  mechanism you have to defeat and thats [TS]

  it's like now there's this big [TS]

  conspiracy [TS]

  there's arch there's these well-drawn [TS]

  characters in some cases in some of them [TS]

  are very thin but also some very well [TS]

  drawn ones and I felt there was enough [TS]

  of a through line for me I felt it was [TS]

  more like episodes of Star Trek if [TS]

  anything you know and I was thinking [TS]

  that's we're talking talking earlier [TS]

  there is the episode does conspiracy how [TS]

  to go look this up the 25th episode of [TS]

  season [TS]

  whatever and looked up here where it [TS]

  turns out that there's a conspiracy and [TS]

  I animation it's aliens have inhabited [TS]

  in Seattle right and then it's never [TS]

  followed up on ever again as Star Trek [TS]

  The Next Generation yeah and I felt [TS]

  there was a little element of that that [TS]

  there was sort of almost too much [TS]

  mystery there were too many things going [TS]

  on there are too many sinister forces [TS]

  but i thought this is kind of the nature [TS]

  of something that felt episodic and [TS]

  turned out was designed that way is that [TS]

  you want to have these things that are [TS]

  bigger than the story because if they're [TS]

  within the story than you're done that [TS]

  you have to invent the next thing for [TS]

  the next story instead having a [TS]

  far-ranging inexplicable mysterious and [TS]

  even improbable conspiracy is a great [TS]

  backdrop on twitch [TS]

  set all these different plot elements [TS]

  emotion yeah the only difference between [TS]

  this in an episode of Star Trek is like [TS]

  I said you wouldn't have a whole episode [TS]

  of Star Trek that just involves the [TS]

  people all of whom are basically going [TS]

  to die down on a planet somewhere or the [TS]

  radio talk show host basically honor [TS]

  those are those are cutaways but they're [TS]

  here they're there were entire [TS]

  installment so in a novel i would just [TS]

  be like all right I can read the next [TS]

  chapter or not in installments you you [TS]

  have that was like that's it [TS]

  I don't get to see my friends this week [TS]

  it just it was a different feeling Scott [TS]

  with how did you feel it held together [TS]

  as a novel versus a series of episodes [TS]

  uh well III think that certainly each [TS]

  episode each chapter was named in [TS]

  episode so that's a good tip off if you [TS]

  are not aware of material nature of the [TS]

  book but I think overall it helped thank [TS]

  you i mean i think scalzi is at his best [TS]

  in this universe [TS]

  I think he becomes no I saw him speak [TS]

  once and he talked about how he likes to [TS]

  write dialogue and he thinks he's very [TS]

  good at it [TS]

  I wish I agree with him he writes very [TS]

  funny snappy dialogue and he's less good [TS]

  at writing descriptions of things which [TS]

  i always find interesting thinking about [TS]

  that as i'm reading his books because he [TS]

  introduces all these aliens and he [TS]

  hardly ever really describes what they [TS]

  look like [TS]

  which i think is effective because the [TS]

  reader's imagination can just fill in [TS]

  the blanks of what these outrageous [TS]

  aliens are he gives you just enough to [TS]

  say like it's the size of a dog and [TS]

  looks like a mantis and then he just [TS]

  walks away [TS]

  I got asked them to because I now i'm [TS]

  curious so there's a heightened I'm [TS]

  gonna butcher than her name hefty so [TS]

  valla I want to know how you get to me I [TS]

  picture her having she's like the legs [TS]

  of like big bird and then but like [TS]

  turning into like the roadrunner at the [TS]

  top that's just the image in my head a [TS]

  picture like Aunt beast from from her [TS]

  mother going time [TS]

  yeah sort of because she's kind of a [TS]

  monster but she doesn't necessarily you [TS]

  know she's very nice but looks like a [TS]

  monster [TS]

  exactly that is a great that last little [TS]

  extra story that was apparently not part [TS]

  of the serialization have to [TS]

  overall it's a churro and speaks to the [TS]

  youth of today actually had me in tears [TS]

  it's Abby I'm like I want to spin off [TS]

  series with her because he painted her [TS]

  in such a rich way that almost nobody [TS]

  else in the whole series gets that much [TS]

  attention [TS]

  it's it's you know they're yeah i think [TS]

  what you said earlier about there being [TS]

  some well-drawn characters and some not [TS]

  so well-drawn characters I I think [TS]

  you've got your main characters who are [TS]

  the the the two guys was Harry Wilson [TS]

  and heart and hard right hard Schmidt it [TS]

  and there and there your and we get the [TS]

  episode where he goes back to richmond [TS]

  goes back to his is there like your [TS]

  buddy cops [TS]

  yeah yeah and then and then you've got [TS]

  your kind of like trope characters your [TS]

  your you know growth ambassador and your [TS]

  kind of honorable captain who doesn't [TS]

  want don't break the ship kinda and they [TS]

  break the ship that totally break the [TS]

  shit like it like in every episode they [TS]

  break this [TS]

  yeah exactly and and so it's kind of [TS]

  like you know you've got your ensemble [TS]

  and you get your main characters and [TS]

  then you've got your ensemble and you've [TS]

  got sort of a breakout character in [TS]

  something like like like a hottie sort [TS]

  of all who is this [TS]

  you know alien day that they deal with [TS]

  and Scott I think you're exactly right [TS]

  this is it was so refreshing for me to [TS]

  see skulls be back playing in this [TS]

  universe because he it is he does a good [TS]

  job at it and it's funny we cut it kind [TS]

  of criticized him a little bit in red [TS]

  shirts for wondering if he was pandering [TS]

  a little bit too much too kind of nerd [TS]

  culture and and here you could also [TS]

  argue that he's retreating into this [TS]

  familiar universe that he's built but at [TS]

  the same time he's built its rich it's [TS]

  got a lot of depth and really that first [TS]

  set of books didn't have a fermenting it [TS]

  was more like the climax of that part of [TS]

  the other like act 1 of this story i'll [TS]

  set up [TS]

  yeah whereas i mean in that the human [TS]

  division is sort of a second act because [TS]

  it two ends on a you know is anything [TS]

  really resolved so you know how you get [TS]

  toward the end of a book or like 40 [TS]

  minutes into a TV show and you're like [TS]

  they're this can't be wrapped itself so [TS]

  instead it was week 11 and i finished [TS]

  week 11 and I think he's not going he [TS]

  in this he it's not how many first i [TS]

  went to the website was like how many [TS]

  chapters other 13 huh that's not gonna [TS]

  he's not gonna end indeed although we [TS]

  get sort of a climax and there's some [TS]

  excitement the grand mystery that has [TS]

  been put forth very slowly over the [TS]

  course of this book is not even room is [TS]

  not resolved at all it's still out there [TS]

  so stay tuned for season two of the [TS]

  human division which is coming he is [TS]

  going to do another book and he i think [TS]

  is going to do it as a serial but it was [TS]

  a little frustrating where when i [TS]

  realized i signed up because it was [TS]

  scalzi and because i thought it was an [TS]

  interesting interesting experiment not [TS]

  knowing that it was going to be booked [TS]

  one of the new series i guess [TS]

  well and I mean it's like a television [TS]

  show in that way right like you get to [TS]

  the end of the first season and you're [TS]

  like well but there's usually that's [TS]

  funny there's usually a better [TS]

  there's a cliffhanger is often a [TS]

  resolution like usually they have to [TS]

  solve one problem introduce more or like [TS]

  there has to be some Ark that's [TS]

  completed I don't feel like there's art [TS]

  that's completed you got to this point [TS]

  where it's you know it's the anti didn't [TS]

  do mall or something it's like you're at [TS]

  the the crux of something really big [TS]

  happening we get some resolution so it's [TS]

  like what will happen to our heroes [TS]

  after they plunge through the atmosphere [TS]

  to earth earth stations destroyed and [TS]

  it's like all right well but but we [TS]

  don't have any resolution at all yet why [TS]

  they mean the question of Earth and [TS]

  going to earth as being the big build-up [TS]

  I mean I felt I felt like that was good [TS]

  but you're right it wasn't it didn't [TS]

  actually resolve a lot of the questions [TS]

  set out it was something came out like [TS]

  there was some clues like oh the [TS]

  conspiracy actually involves but the [TS]

  wing and then set up but that's not that [TS]

  can't be the whole story [TS]

  it just felt like it I'm it's sort of [TS]

  catalytic it's a season-ending it's a [TS]

  season-ending cliffhanger is what we [TS]

  have but if you think it i don't feel [TS]

  like we got enough in the whole arc [TS]

  because the whole like the whole setup [TS]

  was all these mysterious things [TS]

  happening the connections that they make [TS]

  between them as super observers he gave [TS]

  us a little too much knowledge about the [TS]

  connections he didn't withhold enough [TS]

  from us so it was obvious early on that [TS]

  was connections between all these things [TS]

  we saw ships be blown up from a position [TS]

  that none of the main characters could [TS]

  see so I don't know I felt like this was [TS]

  two-thirds of the arc and we should've [TS]

  gotten more [TS]

  without the resolution itself had a [TS]

  cliffhanger but felt like there was some [TS]

  sense of partial completion and then the [TS]

  bigger our quick arias on he does a nice [TS]

  job with like Scott's and he's got a [TS]

  dialogue he has a good sense of humor [TS]

  and I like how he has a good sense of [TS]

  how to pair sense of humor with the [TS]

  sci-fi action in a way that if the humor [TS]

  wasn't there it would seem really kind [TS]

  of cliche and like I said we've seen all [TS]

  of these these tricks before but because [TS]

  he's got these it kind of amusing [TS]

  characters and they're funny and they [TS]

  they they know that they're in these [TS]

  ridiculous situations it doesn't come [TS]

  across as a comedy but it becomes [TS]

  enjoyable and then when there is a [TS]

  moment of of action like in the climax [TS]

  here where there's the space station [TS]

  that's going to be destroyed in there [TS]

  then you know they end up having to be [TS]

  clever in order to go out into the [TS]

  vacuum and end up down on planet earth [TS]

  and there are cows and there are some [TS]

  jokes and I mean there's lots of that [TS]

  you know it works I i think that's what [TS]

  what it's like his secret sauce is he's [TS]

  got some he's got the jokes and then [TS]

  he's got a real mastery of these space [TS]

  opera kind of gambits and he puts them [TS]

  together in a way that's a pleasant III [TS]

  this is the kind of Island this is the [TS]

  kind of book that I is like comfort food [TS]

  to me because this is like I don't find [TS]

  it particularly challenging but it's so [TS]

  enjoyable to go on an adventure like [TS]

  this with somebody who's very good at [TS]

  telling these stories i always think of [TS]

  this in my head is classified under the [TS]

  ripping good yarn kind of tale is I [TS]

  think that the way I always describe my [TS]

  head it's it's an adventure right it's [TS]

  almost it's almost pulpy like in its you [TS]

  know space hero thing but you know I i [TS]

  agree that that the the sort of levity [TS]

  in it does a good job of keeping it [TS]

  thinks you know it feels to me like it [TS]

  feels to me like like castle [TS]

  Wow show right like that has kind of [TS]

  deals with castle in Spain a ringing [TS]

  endorsement that would not be fireflies [TS]

  in firefly castle in Spanish yeah well [TS]

  it deals with like there's there are [TS]

  like that show people get murdered but [TS]

  the right like but the thing that keeps [TS]

  us going back is that the protagonist is [TS]

  kind of charming and there's good like [TS]

  banter you know and it's and it's a more [TS]

  than a crime procedural it's it's very [TS]

  comic or at least light-hearted [TS]

  you know it's not your you know Dexter [TS]

  something like that right like right [TS]

  just like it's not like bloody and gory [TS]

  it's just very you know it's got that [TS]

  sort of light-hearted you kind of know [TS]

  people will be alright in the end you [TS]

  know you're not too worried about that [TS]

  although they do have the whole episode [TS]

  where we're hard Schmidt goes back to [TS]

  his family and we get to know them all [TS]

  and and reading that episodically I kept [TS]

  thinking we're spending a lot of time [TS]

  with this guy [TS]

  are they gonna kill him right away [TS]

  because that's what it felt like [TS]

  and indeed he's immediately put in grave [TS]

  jeopardy and I kept waiting for him to [TS]

  die and he didn't know they put too much [TS]

  but too much information about him to [TS]

  kill him as my friend would say he's in [TS]

  the opening credits so you can't kill [TS]

  him kill him [TS]

  well I anything can happen in a book III [TS]

  like there's a like a a geopolitical [TS]

  metaphor here but there's a a bit in [TS]

  more we in here episode have to look it [TS]

  up now in the bit where they find the [TS]

  brain in the box so we have we three [TS]

  spoiler horns is everyone ready yeah I [TS]

  hope everybody's read this but Zach yeah [TS]

  episode 11 a problem of proportion [TS]

  starts out this very light or the thing [TS]

  they find this you know this ship has [TS]

  been disabled they're gonna go and see [TS]

  what the deal is that right it out [TS]

  waited whoever is attacking them and [TS]

  they've gotten this ship haha and the [TS]

  ship and they find theirs and so they [TS]

  get together this very funny it's [TS]

  actually very amusing together a crew [TS]

  drawn from different races and they're [TS]

  sort of being hilarious and so forth and [TS]

  then and then you find begin the ship is [TS]

  like Oh Wilson finds its being run by a [TS]

  brain in a box that they have [TS]

  essentially is taken someone Collins [TS]

  races [TS]

  they've taken this captain and they've [TS]

  taken his brain and stuck into a [TS]

  computational unit he's running the ship [TS]

  and they promised him you get your body [TS]

  back if the missions over and sort of [TS]

  creepy and at some point one of the [TS]

  other races i forget if it's all about [TS]

  the river says you know actually you [TS]

  guys kind of do that you humans do that [TS]

  you sort of take brains your brains you [TS]

  transfer people's knowledge from one [TS]

  body to another so this is actually sort [TS]

  of your technology like oh it started [TS]

  out something really creepy then it sort [TS]

  of seemed like wait you know this is [TS]

  something that humans can do are kinda [TS]

  creepy [TS]

  it's one of the things that i like that [TS]

  is that doesn't really affect chapter [TS]

  where the one of the best i think [TS]

  because it has that humor and then you [TS]

  go to report it [TS]

  yeah I also actually like the like the [TS]

  little cut away on the planet where they [TS]

  they they were the rogue colony and [TS]

  there they realized that something has [TS]

  gone horribly wrong [TS]

  the the the overall plot here one of the [TS]

  things I like about it is that in a lot [TS]

  of the space opera sort of stories you [TS]

  end up with you know it's humans vs [TS]

  aliens right that's that's what is the [TS]

  only it's a big bad universe out there [TS]

  and in this case the the politics is is [TS]

  quite different there there's the [TS]

  Conclave and then there's the earth the [TS]

  one day that it's not the Earth Alliance [TS]

  it's the colonial Union colonial Union [TS]

  right okay so but then there's earth and [TS]

  earth is not it's on the outs with the [TS]

  colonial Union's you have this [TS]

  interesting dynamic where the fate of [TS]

  humanity may not rest in the balance the [TS]

  fate of the political construct of the [TS]

  of the union may hang in the balance but [TS]

  the humanity may be fine and so you've [TS]

  got kind of humanity is not a monolithic [TS]

  entity and aliens are maneuvering about [TS]

  you know should we should hook up with [TS]

  these guys are these guys and then and [TS]

  behind it all is this question about are [TS]

  these attacks coming from humans to and [TS]

  what's the political motivation and i [TS]

  like that it wasn't just a you know its [TS]

  people vs. aliens thing and actually the [TS]

  people you know are not necessarily all [TS]

  on the same side i thought that was kind [TS]

  of cool and that the aliens may be on [TS]

  our side there's a wonderful bit in that [TS]

  story at the end about a howl off buying [TS]

  a truck without buying loving churros [TS]

  where the little kid says to her you [TS]

  monster and she's like well I don't know [TS]

  what's a monster to you and it's like I [TS]

  don't think I'm a monster and it becomes [TS]

  that great little she's like I'm a woman [TS]

  it's like you're a woman well yeah a [TS]

  woman a little rough analog in my race i [TS]

  am a woman but i'm also this other [TS]

  species and i thought was a nice little [TS]

  brain be no manipulation there you go [TS]

  back and forth between those images [TS]

  Scott what did you think of a human [TS]

  division overall I thought it was [TS]

  enjoyable I mean it's a quick light [TS]

  reading especially if it isn't stretched [TS]

  over 13 weeks yeah [TS]

  reading in one lump i read it and like [TS]

  you know a few hours but it was very [TS]

  enjoyable uh I found the the dog king [TS]

  episode to be god-kings great [TS]

  entertaining even though I knew what was [TS]

  going to happen i still thought it was [TS]

  very entertaining [TS]

  he is a he has a knack for like jason [TS]

  said the humor in and you know in the [TS]

  humour and in science fiction is humor [TS]

  in general is difficult to do but then [TS]

  you add science fiction and it makes it [TS]

  even more difficult i think all that [TS]

  episode was that chapter was sort of an [TS]

  episode of futurama's first season but [TS]

  nevermind it always comes back to [TS]

  involve a dog of all fried was the dog [TS]

  but still sorry [TS]

  overall I would say thumbs up yeah much [TS]

  better than red shirts in my opinion [TS]

  yeah my only my only my only quibble and [TS]

  it's fairly minor was that I thought he [TS]

  went back to the the smart blood well [TS]

  one time too many [TS]

  there's like four three or four [TS]

  different episodes in which it sits like [TS]

  the deus ex machina out like don't worry [TS]

  my blood is sparked I i hate his names [TS]

  for things like I like the names of [TS]

  those people that like BrainPal and [TS]

  smart lad our blood and accounting makes [TS]

  a joke about BrainPal sounding stupid [TS]

  and one of the chapters i think they [TS]

  said at the same time that's you know [TS]

  that's what they named it right like [TS]

  yeah yes your ipad/iphone matter if [TS]

  you're smiling and I think it's not [TS]

  agree that it's kind of awkward you want [TS]

  a cooler name but at the same time it [TS]

  seems very realistic to me [TS]

  well you're probably right there the [TS]

  smart blood I think he's afraid of the [TS]

  smart blood becoming a total deus ex [TS]

  machina so he calls it out but it's [TS]

  still totally I mean if you don't then [TS]

  it's like star trek into darkness was [TS]

  like well they've got this magical but [TS]

  blood now right so you can't what are [TS]

  you doing with that trouble you can't [TS]

  win it's it's magical blood it's there [TS]

  at but you know he does [TS]

  they do a lot of like wait we can use [TS]

  that blood again it's so versatile [TS]

  well yeah I mean I think it would be how [TS]

  it had been used once or you know it [TS]

  might have been [TS]

  yeah i think i would be cool with it but [TS]

  it does seriously I think it's you both [TS]

  of the dogs episode right because that's [TS]

  how they save the dog [TS]

  and then in the episode with the the [TS]

  Marines Special Forces guys were trapped [TS]

  interrogated they use it to she sets it [TS]

  on fire [TS]

  that was a great escape senior like [TS]

  she's naked she's tied up she has [TS]

  nothing and they're about to torture her [TS]

  to death [TS]

  what will she do it was great and she [TS]

  still gets out of it [TS]

  I quite like that episode I thought that [TS]

  was well well done with and it was one [TS]

  of the more interesting for me more the [TS]

  more interesting cutaways because it [TS]

  would feel very much like a like a [TS]

  what's the word [TS]

  it's the you know the episode the [TS]

  self-contained bottle episode you know [TS]

  sort of thing where it's like alright [TS]

  different characters were in this room [TS]

  their lineup cut though they're tied up [TS]

  naked go so as a follower of this of the [TS]

  series too i really enjoy you know the [TS]

  way the series works is your the there [TS]

  are people here on earth and they become [TS]

  80 years old or whatever and they leave [TS]

  her forever to go become to get a new [TS]

  body and then there are a soldier a [TS]

  great premise old mentor really good [TS]

  book the other books are good too even [TS]

  though his tail [TS]

  I really which is the first book in this [TS]

  series that i read tells sort of this [TS]

  plot of the third book from a different [TS]

  perspective really good what we don't [TS]

  ever see in that series is Earth [TS]

  interacting with outer space we really [TS]

  leave Earth and we never go back there [TS]

  we never really see much about it and [TS]

  that's what was really enjoyable about [TS]

  this is that the climax of the of the [TS]

  previous series was earth and [TS]

  confronting or being confronted with the [TS]

  truth about what was happening in space [TS]

  here we actually get to see the [TS]

  interactions and there are lots of jokes [TS]

  about the Cubs winning the world series [TS]

  which I find amusing and and we get we [TS]

  get to see what's happening on earth and [TS]

  there's you know they're they're like an [TS]

  ambassador and their spies and there's [TS]

  intrigue on earth and there's a bombing [TS]

  and and and an informant who has [TS]

  important information and then who of [TS]

  course turns up dead immediately after [TS]

  its and it's fun to have that all in [TS]

  there together because before it was [TS]

  like we were either out in the colonies [TS]

  and you know or there was like back on [TS]

  earth before but there was nothing in [TS]

  between [TS]

  isn't she like the I forget I like the [TS]

  you know the daughter of the senator [TS]

  who's on admission who is also sexy his [TS]

  brother happens to be [TS]

  you know it's great yeah yeah that's [TS]

  fine they never the thing is I never [TS]

  hook up which is sort of funny it's like [TS]

  a lot of something but it's great it's a [TS]

  lot of Miss connections and of course [TS]

  Harry is to know ball and you know try [TS]

  metabolize alcohol and so forth yeah [TS]

  he's our little R little characters are [TS]

  becoming a little kind of a nerd to you [TS]

  is like that he said yeah yeah so it's [TS]

  only I'm sorry [TS]

  so generally positive thoughts about [TS]

  about human division you're going to [TS]

  read the next one at some point i'll [TS]

  totally read the next one I Drive your [TS]

  weekly or where you read it at the end i [TS]

  will probably read it weekly because i [TS]

  had lack willpower huh that's what he's [TS]

  counting on that's what that's how [TS]

  schools to get you [TS]

  that's right that extra three dollars i [TS]

  gave him with her just get confusion and [TS]

  these are like me and then you could [TS]

  read it all at once and not realize that [TS]

  I am fusion you and fuchsia yeah it's [TS]

  great [TS]

  over the next hour the next college I [TS]

  you know this is the thing he is just [TS]

  even at his laziest or the times we [TS]

  don't like him as much because of [TS]

  whatever devices are plots using he's a [TS]

  really terrific writer like I like to i [TS]

  mean i think i will want to reading [TS]

  everything he's written at some point I [TS]

  don't think anyone's tried to wave me [TS]

  off anything in particular because I've [TS]

  like every area of like everything is [TS]

  written we just you know he writes he [TS]

  writes well and i'll come back you know [TS]

  i'll come back to it and and i'll be the [TS]

  next week I want to know what happens in [TS]

  all kinds of crazy stuff is happening at [TS]

  the end and i'm still inches not like [TS]

  crazy stuff oh who cares it's crazy [TS]

  stuff and tell me what happened more [TS]

  crazy stuff please mark crazy stuff with [TS]

  our little friends without president say [TS]

  hello to our little friends [TS]

  yes all right we're gonna move on then [TS]

  and we're gonna leave John Scalzi behind [TS]

  and we're going to talk about shorts to [TS]

  Rachel but before we do that I would [TS]

  like to tell you you you listeners and [TS]

  also you panelists you can listen to [TS]

  about our sponsor because we do have a [TS]

  sponsor and it is it once again the fine [TS]

  people at audible they are the leading [TS]

  providers of downloadable audiobooks [TS]

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  inaudible has it you can listen to [TS]

  audiobooks anytime anywhere on your [TS]

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  your kindle if it's got one of those [TS]

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  and so audible is going to offer the [TS]

  uncomfortable listeners a free audiobook [TS]

  I know it sounds crazy but it's true you [TS]

  sign up for a 30-day trial you get a [TS]

  free book there i think i heard gasps [TS]

  from the pants that exciting and you go [TS]

  to you go to here's how it works you go [TS]

  to www podcast.com slash icomparable to [TS]

  take advantage of this offer sign up for [TS]

  the 30-day trial and you get a free book [TS]

  for example the human division by john [TS]

  scalzi is available on audible and you [TS]

  can get that as an audiobook it's [TS]

  narrated by the same narrator who has [TS]

  narrated all of the old man old man's [TS]

  war series for audible so if you wanted [TS]

  you could start with the very first book [TS]

  old man's war or start with the human [TS]

  division could I listened to a weekly [TS]

  you could you could listen to one [TS]

  chapter and then press pause go away [TS]

  come back [TS]

  listen to another chapter that's the [TS]

  beauty of it do you guys have any any [TS]

  suggestions for books that people should [TS]

  look up if they're gonna have a free [TS]

  book on audible if you're looking for a [TS]

  series that you could really just sink [TS]

  your teeth into I like this alternate [TS]

  trucks homes series by lori king it's [TS]

  surprisingly good so it got its got a [TS]

  little weaker is going on but it starts [TS]

  with the beekeepers apprentice which is [TS]

  in fact available on audible and a [TS]

  bridge form very very long very good [TS]

  story and it tracks the story of this [TS]

  woman Mary Russell who is apparently [TS]

  kind of becomes a protégé of home [TS]

  she's brilliant totally brilliant and [TS]

  eventually they she grows up and things [TS]

  changed between them but I think she's [TS]

  in like that version like a number eight [TS]

  or nine in the series our farther and [TS]

  farther than that i think yeah I think [TS]

  he's up to Class A 10 [TS]

  I think I've right all of them they're [TS]

  really terrific because she really gets [TS]

  homes and the Mary Russell character [TS]

  looks like as well [TS]

  12 I'm like there's a lot I know but [TS]

  it's so it's just I think it's a great [TS]

  series and if you love sherlock holmes [TS]

  she is a true to it even with all the [TS]

  changes she makes she gets I think the [TS]

  character very well it's the best [TS]

  telling I mean I think your game is the [TS]

  only other person I've read has written [TS]

  homes in [TS]

  you outside of the cannon that really [TS]

  gets his nature so listen to that [TS]

  audible the beekeepers apprentice by [TS]

  Lori rking dan do you have a any audible [TS]

  recommendations [TS]

  I you know I was just browsing through [TS]

  when we were talking about this at the [TS]

  beginning of the show i'm not a huge [TS]

  audiobook person but i came across one [TS]

  of my old favorites which is kind of a [TS]

  guilty pleasure and that is the the [TS]

  first sort of major star wars book [TS]

  written after the original trilogy which [TS]

  is Timothy Zahn's heir to the empire and [TS]

  and i love this book it's kind of cheesy [TS]

  it reminds me of skulls in some way and [TS]

  then it's like a good sort of adventure [TS]

  story and it's one of the good series of [TS]

  Star Wars novels that was written [TS]

  afterward there aren't that many [TS]

  features a humanoid of a different hue [TS]

  as well indeed all these works [TS]

  indeed and what I i actually really like [TS]

  the villain in that series you but i [TS]

  will say that what as i was browsing [TS]

  through what caught my eye is that the [TS]

  the the audiobook is a narrated by Denis [TS]

  Lawson who is not only you and my [TS]

  great-uncle but also plays the part of [TS]

  Wedge Antilles in the Star Wars movies [TS]

  and is it has a delightful Scottish [TS]

  accent which is like three wins in 10 so [TS]

  he he reads the abridged version and [TS]

  then there's also another bridge version [TS]

  so you can take your pick is can I sort [TS]

  by accident audible can i say i only [TS]

  want Scott's especially a good like [TS]

  three deep Scott's I'd like that would [TS]

  be a good feature I i haven't narrated [TS]

  any books for audible yet or just a Scot [TS]

  if somebody named Scott would do Scott [TS]

  do you have it an audio book [TS]

  recommendation [TS]

  well I just finished the third book in [TS]

  the milkweed triptych which is a [TS]

  alternate history basically the idea is [TS]

  what if the Nazis had don't want to [TS]

  bring up Nazis all the time [TS]

  what if the Nazis had psychic super [TS]

  soldiers this is this is the the entry [TS]

  Gillis's begin with better seats we I [TS]

  think we made i mentioned this this the [TS]

  first book in that series in our first [TS]

  episode we may have BS Glenn I thinks [TS]

  cast scorn upon it i read it well it got [TS]

  worse and worse Admiral December this [TS]

  equal to like the sequel [TS]

  well this is the third so I read all the [TS]

  different i said do you remember the [TS]

  sequel I do i do [TS]

  they're they're good so yeah basically [TS]

  is the Nazis kind of second super [TS]

  soldiers and the English have a warlocks [TS]

  that don't make no blood prices to these [TS]

  demons to do things and it gets it is [TS]

  very interesting i won't ruin the third [TS]

  book is basically is probably the best [TS]

  of the three and it is a very [TS]

  interesting perspective on it so let's [TS]

  start with the first start with bitter [TS]

  small three honorable and you'll have to [TS]

  buy the other two but they're worth the [TS]

  money or you just stay on audible and i [TS]

  think you get a new book every month so [TS]

  you have listened to that night to keep [TS]

  one with the subscription you can buy [TS]

  others that that's right the first ones [TS]

  free and then you keep paying and then [TS]

  you do you get them all over three [TS]

  months [TS]

  this is good i personally don't have to [TS]

  commute but I know people who do who are [TS]

  great consumers of this because [TS]

  absolutely a lot of time on the road so [TS]

  where we if the listen to being [TS]

  comfortable is not enough for you then [TS]

  you add in these books and then you just [TS]

  keep on keep on jogging or walking on [TS]

  the treadmill or driving in your car so [TS]

  once again to support the podcast and [TS]

  get a free book it's very simple audible [TS]

  podcast.com slash uncomfortable [TS]

  alright let's move on that was our [TS]

  commercial announcement is very exciting [TS]

  yes many books many books are available [TS]

  on another book it's amazing it's like [TS]

  reading literally with your only with [TS]

  your ears [TS]

  that's right many books died to bring [TS]

  you this podcast so so we are every year [TS]

  we do our Hugo episode where we read the [TS]

  novels this year will be no different [TS]

  there are five nominated novels as [TS]

  always we will read all 5 i've already [TS]

  read all 5 as if I dan is going to read [TS]

  the sum and other half is going to omit [TS]

  and in glen is gonna take a shot at i [TS]

  have read 1.3 all that planning 3 i'm [TS]

  going to apply as its as we tape this [TS]

  podcast we're going to lie soon and I'm [TS]

  bringing in the books with me okay we'll [TS]

  come back with them read all right so [TS]

  that we're going to have that we record [TS]

  that in a few weeks [TS]

  stay tuned we will be doing that but we [TS]

  thought before before we do that we [TS]

  would we would read the short stories [TS]

  now some of these are available on on [TS]

  the on the web and some of them aren't [TS]

  linked to the ones that i can find on [TS]

  the web in the show notes but we I [TS]

  thought we talked about it because it's [TS]

  so rare that we get a chance to talk [TS]

  about [TS]

  order fiction on the incomparable and [TS]

  I'm a little disappointed last year [TS]

  almost all the nominees ended up being [TS]

  available for free on the web and that [TS]

  hasn't happened this year which kind of [TS]

  bugs me but do I look to me like there's [TS]

  is there more of an effort to get those [TS]

  out once the voting is done or is that [TS]

  still that gets parole officer of herb [TS]

  in print or what have you [TS]

  last year i think they I think that [TS]

  publishers made an effort to get them [TS]

  freely available so people could read [TS]

  them and talk about them and vote for [TS]

  them and this year i think i think it [TS]

  seems not so much [TS]

  ok so there are three different [TS]

  categories their short story novelette [TS]

  and novella we were three short stories [TS]

  nominated i think most of us read all [TS]

  the short stories so we should probably [TS]

  start there [TS]

  let's see in no particular order [TS]

  immersion by aliette did bowed our I [TS]

  think her name is her him i don't even [TS]

  know this is this this is her this is [TS]

  the story of uh it's it's set on my god [TS]

  is it a space station and there's a [TS]

  technology called a Mercer that [TS]

  basically overrides your visual [TS]

  appearance and your personality with [TS]

  with the with other memories and other [TS]

  behaviors like a big universe that she's [TS]

  just giving us a tiny slice that I don't [TS]

  know she's written more in this space [TS]

  and it's very interesting but if you're [TS]

  getting like one one thousandth of a [TS]

  percent and she keeps implying a lot of [TS]

  things that you just don't know what [TS]

  that the full picture is I i read these [TS]

  stories you know so i read download 3 i [TS]

  just read them in random order more or [TS]

  less and I found that I liked coming in [TS]

  increasing order as I went along and [TS]

  this one was in the middle [TS]

  ah interesting firmly in the middle i [TS]

  would say so yeah like Glenn says I feel [TS]

  like this is a part of a larger picture [TS]

  I don't read a lot of short fiction i [TS]

  read some what short fiction I do read I [TS]

  think tends to be less often sci-fi and [TS]

  more often something like a mystery [TS]

  so like because I grew up reading track [TS]

  home stories and Agatha Christie stories [TS]

  and that kind of stuff and so you can [TS]

  kind of get away with that because it's [TS]

  got a very definite shape like a mystery [TS]

  story in a book there's a mystery right [TS]

  there's a [TS]

  detective the detectives going to solve [TS]

  the mystery at the end so there there's [TS]

  something pleasing and you know [TS]

  comforting about that whereas sci-fi [TS]

  stories very often don't have you know [TS]

  they they can be a little more abstract [TS]

  or there's not quite such a defined [TS]

  formula right and so this one it did [TS]

  very much feel like a slice of a larger [TS]

  work to me I mean there is sort of a [TS]

  thread but you've got this the strange [TS]

  dueling narrative including one that's [TS]

  in the second person that's an unusual [TS]

  look which took a little time to get [TS]

  used to and it's sort of comes to a head [TS]

  towards the end but at the same time I [TS]

  felt like I you know I came out of it [TS]

  and thought about it for a little bit [TS]

  and it was like I'm not really sure what [TS]

  you're going for here is this not story [TS]

  would have been a strong candidate for [TS]

  the James Tiptree jr. water that was [TS]

  still being offered because it's one of [TS]

  these things about it's a metaphor for [TS]

  woman's identity although it's caffeine [TS]

  is a broader thing to me man also use [TS]

  the Mercer's but they seem to have less [TS]

  trouble with them and women get subsumed [TS]

  should i know there's an implicit in [TS]

  that women tend to get this one going to [TS]

  suggest this wife gets completely taken [TS]

  over by her mercer and the husband seems [TS]

  quite sad about it but but she's turned [TS]

  left onto longer turn it up too long as [TS]

  you wanted to fit in and she's she's not [TS]

  of his race and uh and she's she's a [TS]

  native of this station or planet or [TS]

  wherever there are that were there when [TS]

  the story takes place and so it that's [TS]

  one of the interesting things about the [TS]

  two different narratives we got the [TS]

  people who are working there or that or [TS]

  the narratives of it and then that [TS]

  you've got this woman who's been [TS]

  completely lost yourself and and where [TS]

  we're seeing that dynamic but we're also [TS]

  seeing the strange technology and trying [TS]

  to figure out what the Mercer really [TS]

  means and it's it starts out as being [TS]

  almost like a hint sort of thing that [TS]

  struck me as like well you know like you [TS]

  what fingers you extend when you pick up [TS]

  your teacup it's sort of like it'll tell [TS]

  you all of those things but if you all [TS]

  you do is ever listen to the Mercer you [TS]

  completely lose who you are as a person [TS]

  and you're just basically a robot [TS]

  repeating the orders of the of the of [TS]

  them the Mercer which seems to be what [TS]

  happens to the characters like someone [TS]

  who played too much wow who or that game [TS]

  one start with the next to that she can [TS]

  I feel like that game comes up in every [TS]

  single [TS]

  every single icomparable episode that's [TS]

  because that's because that's an [TS]

  excellent episode with actually genocide [TS]

  scares the crap out of me as a kid [TS]

  Scott what did you think well I liked [TS]

  this short story a lot I I liked the [TS]

  fact that it just kind of started and [TS]

  you were kind of lost and didn't even [TS]

  know what anniversary was which seems [TS]

  important since it's the middle of the [TS]

  short stories emerged inversion a new [TS]

  kind of our are confused for a while and [TS]

  then it kind of clicks at the end I [TS]

  thought was very effective I she also [TS]

  wrote one of the novellas that are is [TS]

  nominated and I feel like she has a good [TS]

  talent for kind of creating what seems [TS]

  like a very well-thought-out world in a [TS]

  very compressed amount of space in with [TS]

  a few words i kind of feel like there's [TS]

  a fully flashed world back there I don't [TS]

  know a lot about it but I feel like [TS]

  there's depth to it that I haven't seen [TS]

  it's not like it's like a it's not a [TS]

  soap bubble I feel like it's it's it's [TS]

  fully fleshed out even if i'm only [TS]

  getting this little slice [TS]

  yeah i agree i i i didn't love this one [TS]

  but I liked it [TS]

  what's so another one is a there are [TS]

  three short story nominees mantis wives [TS]

  bike is Johnson this is interesting kiss [TS]

  Johnson I recognize the name and I [TS]

  looked I looked her up [TS]

  this is a this is a woman author as well [TS]

  and she wrote a novella that was [TS]

  nominated last year that i liked a great [TS]

  deal called the man who bridge the mist [TS]

  liked it a lot [TS]

  she also was nominated for the nebula [TS]

  and Hugo I think she won the Nobel for a [TS]

  short story called ponies which I [TS]

  despised so i didn't know what i was [TS]

  going to think about mantis wives was [TS]

  the pony one ponies about vampire [TS]

  unicorns no no that's another thing it [TS]

  was it was the the ponies they kill each [TS]

  other and it's awful and I mean I was [TS]

  service vehicle but I didn't like it at [TS]

  all [TS]

  ya see well it was good i didn't like it [TS]

  but I was really rich [TS]

  yeah that's true but I feel like this [TS]

  one suffers from the problem of people [TS]

  how authors who sometimes go into [TS]

  stories feeling like I am going to say [TS]

  something with capital esas uh-huh and [TS]

  get just there [TS]

  I did not feel like there's a story here [TS]

  no this this red like this reminded me [TS]

  of the sort of things that got submitted [TS]

  to me when I was everything intertext [TS]

  the fiction magazine many years ago and [TS]

  i would read this and think there are [TS]

  many clever ideas here this reads more [TS]

  like a summary or a a blister bullet [TS]

  points of ideas the idea here is that [TS]

  there are these these mantis people and [TS]

  may the women eat their mates like [TS]

  mantises do and they come up with all [TS]

  sorts of different ways of doing it [TS]

  because they're intelligent and they [TS]

  have this culture and I I again it just [TS]

  came across to me like it's clever but [TS]

  it's not really a story it's just some [TS]

  ideas on the back of a napkin [TS]

  it's a little too clever for its own [TS]

  good to two things that has one of the [TS]

  best opening sentences [TS]

  eventually the Mantis women discovered [TS]

  that killing their husbands was not [TS]

  inseparable from the getting of young i [TS]

  just i read that a bunch of times and [TS]

  the rest of the story didn't fulfill me [TS]

  the same way that first sentence did it [TS]

  was beautifully constructed the other is [TS]

  this the kind of thing that got [TS]

  published a lot in the nineteen [TS]

  seventies and those like brave new [TS]

  fiction dangerous visions that was like [TS]

  stuff that was so challenging I'm like [TS]

  well I'm going to be challenged by this [TS]

  anymore because I can read all kinds of [TS]

  experimental we have exposure to so much [TS]

  more kinds of stuff i kinda I thought [TS]

  this was amusing it was like an [TS]

  amuse-bouche like a little thing you [TS]

  read very quickly haha but it didn't [TS]

  hold up as a story anyway in intertext [TS]

  we always had the short must be [TS]

  spectacular rule we called it which is [TS]

  short short short stories were fine but [TS]

  every word counts and you've got if [TS]

  you're going to write a [TS]

  five-hundred-word story it needs to blow [TS]

  us away and that i was reminded of that [TS]

  like three minutes and thought this is [TS]

  very short [TS]

  it didn't blow me away but at least to [TS]

  issue it was your half-sister but it [TS]

  raises the bar right there wasn't much [TS]

  what there was a bit [TS]

  yeah the Mantis wives don't eat in small [TS]

  portions but they do start with the head [TS]

  so that's nice to give them that yeah [TS]

  Scott what did you think I thought was [TS]

  interesting i don't understand why it [TS]

  was nominated yet uh I thought you I'm [TS]

  not said that i read it it was that it [TS]

  was bored [TS]

  uh I thought it was amusing as i read it [TS]

  but then I thought why did I refit yeah [TS]

  yep alright so that takes us to can lose [TS]

  story mono RA which is a from an [TS]

  anthology called the future is Japanese [TS]

  and i love this one [TS]

  yeah it was great yeah this is my [TS]

  favorite of the three by here it's a [TS]

  story about a spaceship a generational [TS]

  spaceship it's a story about the [TS]

  apocalypse essentially the end of the [TS]

  world on earth and this one character [TS]

  who is a boy as the earth is being [TS]

  destroyed essentially who ends up being [TS]

  the only Japanese person on this [TS]

  American spaceship that's going to [TS]

  another star and it's going to take [TS]

  hundreds of years to get their wonderful [TS]

  it has like everything it has lying [TS]

  government contractors Japanese nobility [TS]

  and if an affair [TS]

  yes secrets giant huge solar sails [TS]

  multi-generational spaceships [TS]

  yeah I it is the scene that we're so as [TS]

  we learn as this goes the everybody [TS]

  everybody sures the population of Earth [TS]

  at the the spaceships are going to be [TS]

  ready and it turns out it was all the [TS]

  contractors like spec spend it all on [TS]

  hookers and and gin because fear would [TS]

  actually happen because the world's [TS]

  gonna end anyway so what the hell [TS]

  and so the spaceships don't work and so [TS]

  almost everybody dies on earth but but [TS]

  uh with a creator of the the escape [TS]

  their one real escape spaceship that [TS]

  launches before that you know chaos [TS]

  consumes the world is is the ex [TS]

  boyfriend or lover of this kid's mom and [TS]

  there's the scene it brought me to tears [TS]

  the scene where the mom takes him down [TS]

  to the embassy basically to give her son [TS]

  to this this guy to force her son on [TS]

  this guy and say you're not gonna run [TS]

  away with me on your spaceship [TS]

  I want you to save my son's life and [TS]

  then the father comes and and he sees [TS]

  the father and they and there's kind of [TS]

  this nod of recognition and the parents [TS]

  watches their son goes away and they're [TS]

  never gonna see him again it's it's just [TS]

  it's in in not a lot of pages it's [TS]

  really quite touching [TS]

  yeah it's the kind of thing that the [TS]

  fellow we talked about the whole episode [TS]

  4 and as is my won't i can't remember [TS]

  his name [TS]

  ted chang who air rights these things it [TS]

  happened i remembered it's a miracle he [TS]

  has that it's a very similar gift of a [TS]

  few strokes it's like that he just puts [TS]

  his brush on the paper and every brush [TS]

  tells you a lifetime and you're done and [TS]

  you think [TS]

  how's that i read a story this kind of [TS]

  story that was this short and yet I know [TS]

  this much about everyone involved in all [TS]

  the characters in the world [TS]

  yeah and I mean yeah I and it was one of [TS]

  those things where you could see the [TS]

  ending kinda telegraphed sure [TS]

  uh-huh but at the same time you know [TS]

  despite that you it makes you think [TS]

  right and that's that is that is the [TS]

  goal of great stories it makes you think [TS]

  like well what if it were what if it [TS]

  were me in that situation what I be [TS]

  willing to do that you know and I don't [TS]

  know it'sit's I thought it was well put [TS]

  together i thought this was a character [TS]

  who you know you inhabit just long [TS]

  enough to realize like that everything [TS]

  that they do is realistic to a certain [TS]

  extent right you know despite the fact [TS]

  that it's an outlandish setting its [TS]

  there's something true about that [TS]

  character scott i'm coming to you [TS]

  because you won't say it unless I ask [TS]

  don't tell me Scott [TS]

  well I think it could have used a little [TS]

  more mantis but other than that huh [TS]

  or maybe just wanted more met this belt [TS]

  now I thought this is uh the story that [TS]

  will get my vote yeah i think it was i [TS]

  like to immersion a lot but i thought [TS]

  this one was better [TS]

  yeah it was it was touching it had a [TS]

  you know the the self-sacrifice the [TS]

  family sacrifice i loved the the way [TS]

  that the Japanese people reacted they [TS]

  were you know all very calm about this [TS]

  the world is going to end but we have to [TS]

  line up in our assigned places and just [TS]

  wait because the government has promised [TS]

  us that these spaceships are going to [TS]

  take us away and they wouldn't lie to us [TS]

  and then of course the prime minister [TS]

  after several days of people sitting [TS]

  around says uh by the way the spaceships [TS]

  don't work and everyone just went home [TS]

  and I thought well yeah that's that's [TS]

  what else do you do you just go home i [TS]

  suppose but yeah i really i really [TS]

  enjoyed it and it's only 132 pages i [TS]

  read about 20 minutes [TS]

  I like the the main characters a [TS]

  conundrum about trying to teach the [TS]

  people on the spaceship about Japan and [TS]

  he feels this way to that he is the only [TS]

  Japanese person left alive that he needs [TS]

  and he was just a little kid when he [TS]

  left Japan but he's got to do you know [TS]

  he's got this burden of trying to uphold [TS]

  his this entire culture that he barely [TS]

  understands himself I father was a [TS]

  really nice you know there's just a lot [TS]

  there in very very few words there's a [TS]

  whole lot in this store trying to teach [TS]

  the kids to play go [TS]

  yeah I like that was nice touch this [TS]

  boring yeah the stupid yeah I like that [TS]

  it struck me is very like yeah this is [TS]

  what kids would say yeah oh yeah alright [TS]

  let's so who is born [TS]

  let's move on to the novelettes I the [TS]

  boy who cast no shadow by thomas old who [TS]

  built who is a apparently a well-known [TS]

  an award-winning Dutch novelist and this [TS]

  is the first english-language thing he's [TS]

  ever at least ever been recognized for [TS]

  it anyway [TS]

  the young man to his 493 according to [TS]

  his body so the old is to be taken [TS]

  lightly and this is a this is a strange [TS]

  really fantasy story about a boy who [TS]

  cast no shadow as in the title but it [TS]

  you know much more interesting than that [TS]

  is his friend who is made of glass who [TS]

  is one of these glass boys and only boys [TS]

  seem to be born with this it's a strange [TS]

  genetic abnormality that causes them to [TS]

  be made of glass like not metaphorically [TS]

  or that syndrome where people have like [TS]

  Samuel Jackson and unbreakable have [TS]

  easily broken bones literally he has [TS]

  made [TS]

  glass he cries molten glass tears and if [TS]

  you drop him he will shatter into a [TS]

  million pieces of glass because he's [TS]

  made of glass actual glass this is a [TS]

  strange strange story metaphorically [TS]

  though not actually he's not actually I [TS]

  liked a lot of things about this story [TS]

  you know i-i-i I felt like it almost [TS]

  that the writer you know maybe he did it [TS]

  on purpose but it felt to me almost as [TS]

  if we were sort of supposed to we were [TS]

  going to tell the story of the boy who [TS]

  cast a shadow and in the end the glass [TS]

  kid was more interesting so it was [TS]

  really about the boy who cast a shadow [TS]

  enabling the glass kid to see the world [TS]

  and and have a good sort of end to his [TS]

  life and that the fact that this boy [TS]

  cast no shadow kind of wasn't relevant [TS]

  at all he was there he was he enabled [TS]

  the actual store yeah and it's nice that [TS]

  there's a good title the Blue Castle [TS]

  yeah and these are two you know [TS]

  essentially they're they're Outsiders [TS]

  there there there [TS]

  unlike their friends the boy who cast a [TS]

  shadow is also gay so he's ee an [TS]

  outsider and struggles with that and [TS]

  then then his friend is over protected [TS]

  by his parents because you know he's [TS]

  made of glass [TS]

  I'm sure there are lots of there are [TS]

  lots of of parallels you can draw I what [TS]

  the story is really about it is he's [TS]

  actually made of glass it's not just the [TS]

  parents are being overprotective [TS]

  uh but you know so i had moments where I [TS]

  was like no you know why did she cast no [TS]

  shadow what does that mean it probably [TS]

  does mean something but there are also [TS]

  moments in here that are really [TS]

  beautiful about these friends and about [TS]

  finding friendship in an unexpected [TS]

  place and and and doing something for a [TS]

  friend and pride trying to bring an [TS]

  adventure [TS]

  yeah and bring some meaning to [TS]

  somebody's life who hasn't who's been [TS]

  isolated and and I appreciated that even [TS]

  though I'm not sure it worked on a [TS]

  percent for me there's a sweet thing to [TS]

  which is that like he really is made of [TS]

  glass like it's not I mean it's a [TS]

  metaphor I'm sure right there is some [TS]

  expert but but he goes through all these [TS]

  things he gets little cracks and they [TS]

  get you never have to auto shop yah to [TS]

  go to the auto glass [TS]

  guy and I thought this great line is [TS]

  there in Portugal yeah because I forget [TS]

  the reason like having the porch like [TS]

  old dutch writer there in Europe of [TS]

  course yeah they took a train right this [TS]

  is is this bit where says they're [TS]

  wandering the streets he says an old [TS]

  glass blower who is spoken for smoking [TS]

  in front of his shot fell to his knees [TS]

  and cried at the site of splinter the [TS]

  nickname for the skin i smiled [TS]

  that's what the reunion of Geppetto and [TS]

  Pinocchio let's just been like this for [TS]

  like yeah it was you can see this 3 and [TS]

  the light and the whole thing like oh [TS]

  that's beautiful one and there's the [TS]

  moment about the last night leads to [TS]

  splinter getting a crack in his back [TS]

  it's like the first human contact he [TS]

  ever has is that is that is that the the [TS]

  boy who cast a shadow lays down and he [TS]

  lays on top of the minutes like the [TS]

  first physical contact that this person [TS]

  has ever had and it's it's very sweet [TS]

  and then there's also this funny moment [TS]

  where the boy who cast a shadow is he [TS]

  wakes up and and the the glass boy has [TS]

  gone to town and gotten patched up [TS]

  enough that he could and and he comes [TS]

  back with a glass boat to go out in the [TS]

  end to see it it's very strange and very [TS]

  funny glassblower right now to its [TS]

  lovely that's the thing is like it may [TS]

  not totally hold together but kinda it's [TS]

  just a lovely it's it's new to I don't [TS]

  think I've read anything with these [TS]

  elements that like it before and there's [TS]

  something wonderful about something [TS]

  unexpected in New yes yes all right [TS]

  interesting interesting story fade to [TS]

  white by cattle entei who has been [TS]

  nominated for many things and I I again [TS]

  like I said about kids Johnson things [TS]

  that I've liked very much and things [TS]

  that I haven't she wrote a Nobel i think [TS]

  last year that I loved and then she [TS]

  wrote a novel a few years ago I got [TS]

  nominated that I really didn't like so [TS]

  I'm all over the place with her [TS]

  this is an interesting story it's [TS]

  basically a a tale of an alternate [TS]

  post-world war two Cold War McCarthy era [TS]

  where McCarthy is the president the [TS]

  united states has lost world war three [TS]

  and large chunks of the country or [TS]

  radioactive glass speaking of glass and [TS]

  it's a story [TS]

  three of the propaganda and it's also of [TS]

  a boy and a girl who are part of the [TS]

  breeding program that's going on because [TS]

  some people are some men are soldiers [TS]

  and they get sent out to the radioactive [TS]

  waste but others are husbands and they [TS]

  move from life to life one every one [TS]

  every week for a four-week cycle and [TS]

  have as many kids as they [TS]

  have as many kids as they [TS]

  like its genetic testing and and there's [TS]

  all the there's some memos that we see [TS]

  of the propaganda campaign and i like i [TS]

  like this i liked it and the fact that [TS]

  it didn't go the plot didn't go in the [TS]

  direction that I expected as we see this [TS]

  boy in this girl prepare for this and it [TS]

  took a little while for me to figure out [TS]

  exactly what was going on but I thought [TS]

  that was kind of fun [TS]

  yeah I really like this one myself I [TS]

  like the propaganda in you know kind of [TS]

  interspersed with the the narrative of [TS]

  the story kind of fleshing out the world [TS]

  because I could just see these [TS]

  advertisements that they were talking [TS]

  about kind of like the fifties [TS]

  oh yeah motif which you know McCarthy [TS]

  has frozen the country in one imagines [TS]

  this kind of idealized nineteen fifties [TS]

  era perfect nuclear family right even [TS]

  the husband goes from place to place [TS]

  exactly it was still the perfect nuclear [TS]

  family buried in layers of the country [TS]

  is radioactive class but everything is [TS]

  fine don't worry it will all be ok i [TS]

  like the husband's job basically get up [TS]

  you go as if into an office and you hang [TS]

  out in the men's club all day being [TS]

  comfortable as it's hard being a husband [TS]

  because you're protecting your precious [TS]

  bodily fluids and you go home and and [TS]

  like that that's your job [TS]

  yeah yeah this was fun it was with [TS]

  Americans and the the trials of the girl [TS]

  who's trying to make sure that she's [TS]

  allowed to have children because of her [TS]

  genetic testing and then there's the boy [TS]

  who's got a you know a strapping older [TS]

  brother and he's wondering if he's ever [TS]

  going to to be chosen to be a husband [TS]

  and his interaction with his father when [TS]

  he comes home and the girls got a girl's [TS]

  got a black boyfriend and she's secretly [TS]

  part Japanese but it can pass i guess [TS]

  her mom is half japanese it this whole [TS]

  yeah there's a lot in there again you [TS]

  can pack a lot in one of these [TS]

  relatively short stories and it was very [TS]

  interesting evocative setting this this [TS]

  fifties world except with nuclear [TS]

  fallout raging everywhere [TS]

  yes yeah [TS]

  ok there's the girl thing who went out [TS]

  for sushi by Pat Cadogan which is a [TS]

  story of a beauty queen from Earth who [TS]

  goes into space and decides she wants to [TS]

  have surgery to turn herself into a fish [TS]

  as you do as so often happens [TS]

  yeah it's a story as old as time but it [TS]

  was very thinly told and Seymour to be [TS]

  an excuse for the sky that kind of walk [TS]

  through all of these various ideas or [TS]

  lady and a package man or woman it's pat [TS]

  and just have an opportunity to kind of [TS]

  run through pet ideas about how space [TS]

  exploration might be fostered by having [TS]

  body modifications that work better for [TS]

  you that nothing was very thin very thin [TS]

  she said she's a a woman writer by the [TS]

  way so now you've got your you've got [TS]

  your many more many women nominated this [TS]

  year it's great to see good i agree with [TS]

  you know this was not didn't feel that [TS]

  strong to me there's some interesting [TS]

  ideas here i think that there's it's a [TS]

  lot of it's predicated on this pun of [TS]

  going out for sushi being too want to be [TS]

  surgically altered into being a fish a [TS]

  space fish [TS]

  yeah and then the end the only thing [TS]

  about it that sort of had struck me [TS]

  about it was the idea that maybe if you [TS]

  saw this on on a in a movie or something [TS]

  the idea that this is the fish don't [TS]

  think she's anything interesting but [TS]

  she's a beauty queen so imagine there's [TS]

  this beautiful woman in outer space who [TS]

  decides that she wants to be turned into [TS]

  a chambered nautilus and that all of the [TS]

  earth media we see briefly it is a gas [TS]

  that this would happen but the idea is [TS]

  she's out there to become sort of a [TS]

  native of space and that means shedding [TS]

  her old human body and becoming a [TS]

  chambered nautilus and then they go off [TS]

  to you know have other adventures and on [TS]

  Jupiter I can see Sean having that but [TS]

  uh huh [TS]

  but yeah Scott what did you think I [TS]

  think I think she did some clever things [TS]

  with language in it but overall it [TS]

  didn't do much for me [TS]

  yeah it was clever idea [TS]

  all the lawyers are chambered nautilus [TS]

  by the way [TS]

  yes he's funny keep books on the shelves [TS]

  not all the chambered nautilus our [TS]

  lawyers but all the lawyers are [TS]

  chambered nautilus if you're looking for [TS]

  a lawyer they are gonna get the chamber [TS]

  not yet please otherwise yeah i thought [TS]

  i had some good stuff in it but you [TS]

  didn't let me cool yeah [TS]

  yep hold the space ok where there are [TS]

  two more in this cabbage there two more [TS]

  in this category and they're both by [TS]

  Sean Maguire who is a turban fantasy [TS]

  writer who occasionally rights under a [TS]

  pen name insult see tears which is a [TS]

  which is a sort of a selkie story and [TS]

  rat catcher which involves cats that are [TS]

  intelligent cat cats [TS]

  I honestly I i tried to get through [TS]

  these and I couldn't [TS]

  well I thought to myself do I just not [TS]

  like your grands and maybe i will like [TS]

  her other stuff and I didn't think it [TS]

  was as bad [TS]

  no no the way this maybe stuff week this [TS]

  is mere Graham yes Shawn Maguire is also [TS]

  here not know that this is the real the [TS]

  real mirror granted shot at mcguire ah [TS]

  so in sea salt tears i thought was [TS]

  extremely beautiful never had multiple [TS]

  times ratcatcher I found tedious and [TS]

  yeah probably over formal and totally [TS]

  almost plotless an interesting alright [TS]

  well there you go in sea salt tears i [TS]

  got further in and it was far enough to [TS]

  like Scott said to just say this is much [TS]

  better written than the mirror grant [TS]

  novels [TS]

  oh that was so that was sweet i thought [TS]

  it was well told that a nice twist [TS]

  thought it was a into the retelling of a [TS]

  long you know held story in modern times [TS]

  I don't know I've had a lot of wonderful [TS]

  i think Freddy likes a three times now [TS]

  and no zombies i love it no zombies [TS]

  no but there are people who you know [TS]

  eternal young and and curses that are [TS]

  apparently onto the X generation i guess [TS]

  i could see which I kind of saw that [TS]

  coming but I didn't really like this i [TS]

  mean i liked it i didn't hate it [TS]

  which is step up yep i like but i didn't [TS]

  i didn't like [TS]

  I was confused once again why it was [TS]

  nominated and even more confused by [TS]

  white rat catcher was nominated that all [TS]

  agree with you there that was just an [TS]

  interesting but that's funny I thought [TS]

  you guys would I was actually expecting [TS]

  you all would have that I wonder if [TS]

  knowing that it was mere Grant had known [TS]

  that I would have read them both with [TS]

  much more jaundiced eye having having [TS]

  just gotten through blackout I really [TS]

  didn't want to read more honestly and [TS]

  and and thread catcher really put me off [TS]

  and I so I i abandoned sea salt tears [TS]

  I'll actually go back to it now the Glen [TS]

  said nice things about it i'll go back I [TS]

  i did it wasn't bad i did verify that it [TS]

  was certainly I the writing didn't [TS]

  bother me in a way that the novel novel [TS]

  did but I was kind of I was kinda tapped [TS]

  out so i'll take your word for it and [TS]

  maybe i'll go back now I'm happy that I [TS]

  just don't you know to categorically [TS]

  hate everything she's done yeah that's [TS]

  good that makes me feel good that's good [TS]

  well I would love to get to a place with [TS]

  her that I got to with so like I said [TS]

  with cat valente and and with kids [TS]

  Johnson where I can say huh [TS]

  I didn't like that I like that so you [TS]

  know I I i can like I'm capable of [TS]

  liking things you do and some of them i [TS]

  don't like but I haven't gotten there [TS]

  yet with her but that's ok it's a [TS]

  journey it's a journey it is ok so best [TS]

  novella i only read one of these which [TS]

  was the stars do not lie by Jay lake [TS]

  did you guys read any of the others i [TS]

  read them all [TS]

  Oh Scott later so starts we'll start [TS]

  with stars do not lie which what which [TS]

  is um it's like alien steampunk kind of [TS]

  it is and i kinda like it because again [TS]

  it answers are important question which [TS]

  is are there Zeppelin's and the answer [TS]

  is yes Zeppelin's on an alien world [TS]

  colonized by humans set thousands of [TS]

  years ago with an interesting social [TS]

  culture of there are pirate sort of [TS]

  pirate people and then there's the [TS]

  church and their kind of keeping these [TS]

  secrets of of humanity actually not [TS]

  being from this planet but scientists [TS]

  figure it out there suppressed and [TS]

  I I enjoyed all of that and then at the [TS]

  end they like go to an island where [TS]

  there's a volcano and everything closed [TS]

  up and nothing is resolved and it's over [TS]

  it is it does end quite abruptly yeah [TS]

  which is I mean you know you only have [TS]

  so much in the novel they were so I know [TS]

  but there's so much weight put on the [TS]

  the Envoy from the church and they I [TS]

  know he kind of built up to some kind of [TS]

  major revolution and then it may find [TS]

  this spaceship right but in the volcano [TS]

  yeah it's like I nothing happens when [TS]

  the other other ship is coming and [TS]

  there's something big is gonna happen [TS]

  and we never yeah it's kind of like I [TS]

  wanted this is like the skull thing [TS]

  right where the you get the serial [TS]

  things and I want the next episode of [TS]

  this but I don't think it's gonna I [TS]

  don't especially since jail acres and is [TS]

  terminally ill and it's not gonna yeah [TS]

  yes yeah he's not writing anymore so [TS]

  we're gonna fix I'll get it but that's [TS]

  that is sad and he's very talented [TS]

  writer [TS]

  yeah i like i like the story i just i [TS]

  don't ya its ended abruptly and do [TS]

  yeah yeah but-but-but you know as a [TS]

  steampunk I I'm there's a lot of [TS]

  steampunk stuff that i really like this [TS]

  and this was another example again the [TS]

  resemblance [TS]

  how can you not like a story with us f1 [TS]

  it's true and has a whole religious [TS]

  overtones which always find interesting [TS]

  ya around the I liked all of the content [TS]

  idols that people have a makes it i just [TS]

  found that humorous like the first quote [TS]

  it is a you know more he introduces the [TS]

  main character and then he follows us [TS]

  like 18 different degrees and he's like [TS]

  he's a fourth-degree priest that he's [TS]

  also high level in the the government [TS]

  thing that's a very funny moment where [TS]

  the guy who's in the the Pirates [TS]

  whatever guild in order to give him [TS]

  classified a access basically he says [TS]

  are you know what level are you and he [TS]

  says I'm fourth level and he says well [TS]

  congratulations you're 30 second level [TS]

  now it's just the one I thought you were [TS]

  gonna execute me [TS]

  yeah but no I need to tell you the [TS]

  secret so right exactly i was writing [TS]

  the letters that moment where like you [TS]

  can't the the priest there like the [TS]

  priest can't be here is like well I'm [TS]

  also a 30 [TS]

  yeah one of you so i can I know [TS]

  everything just get out of my way [TS]

  that's right let me into your to your [TS]

  place your little Clubhouse say okay so [TS]

  what do you think of these others so [TS]

  there is the Emperor soul by Brandon [TS]

  Sanderson and if anyone has read any of [TS]

  Brandon sense and stuff they will have [TS]

  read this basically he is really really [TS]

  interested in building magic systems and [TS]

  so basically this novella is an excuse [TS]

  for him to build a magic system based on [TS]

  seals so you you place a seal on an [TS]

  object our part part part part that was [TS]

  worth unmuting yourself for I and I it [TS]

  rewrites the history of the object so [TS]

  you have like a phase that's very plain [TS]

  but a seal master can put a seal on it [TS]

  that will then turn it in to change the [TS]

  history of that item and make it into [TS]

  like you know a main bazar something [TS]

  like and he's the guy was finishing the [TS]

  wheel of time right to finish the wheel [TS]

  times together didn't finish a meal of [TS]

  time and he he did the mistborn series [TS]

  so basically the story is the seal [TS]

  master person is caught because they she [TS]

  counterfeit Spain things she tries to [TS]

  steal the Emperor's an emperors painting [TS]

  but the Emperor's has a fatal accident [TS]

  and so he his peace brain dead so she is [TS]

  a taken into secrecy and she has to [TS]

  basically create recreate the Emperor [TS]

  soul using a seal and basically make a [TS]

  counterfeit version of the Emperor huh [TS]

  and so the the story is set up that [TS]

  she's in this prison basically and it's [TS]

  a back-and-forth where she explains [TS]

  basically how all this magic works [TS]

  it was interesting but it was mostly a [TS]

  treatise on this magic system so if [TS]

  you're not interested in a deep dive [TS]

  into how this magic system works [TS]

  you might want to skip the Emperor soul [TS]

  right mirror grant nominated for it's a [TS]

  prequel to feed it is a prequel to feed [TS]

  settin [TS]

  you know speaking of pandering to geeks [TS]

  it's set in comic-con [TS]

  it's called San Diego 2014 and there's [TS]

  an outbreak of the killer [TS]

  kellis-amberlee co their kellis-amberlee [TS]

  virus in comic-con and this follows the [TS]

  story of like a coast guard guy who's [TS]

  also a big fire five flat fan and he if [TS]

  they have a booth at comic-con and they [TS]

  sell stuff and they sing firefly songs [TS]

  and zombies are so it's a combination of [TS]

  fee and fanfiction exactly excellent and [TS]

  it tells the story of this ragtag group [TS]

  of people trying to get out of the san [TS]

  diego convention center so how was it it [TS]

  was not good haha not dammit I i did not [TS]

  enjoy it but I can see why people might [TS]

  sir crowd pleaser [TS]

  there you go on a red station drifting [TS]

  by and let the boat hard against home [TS]

  soon and she was a woman who wrote [TS]

  immersion yeah this is the the novella [TS]

  that will get my vote I believe because [TS]

  it is just I think it's a beautiful [TS]

  beautiful story it's basically set in [TS]

  kind of it said on the space station [TS]

  within a planet's multi-planet spanning [TS]

  Empire that's based on basically it's [TS]

  you know instead of European centric you [TS]

  know Empire it's a vietnamese Empire and [TS]

  so the the Empire is being attacked by [TS]

  rebels and so numerous planets are [TS]

  following and the Emperor is not doing [TS]

  anything he's just reading and kind of [TS]

  fortifying his holdings the main [TS]

  character is a refugee who ends up on [TS]

  this a space station that is a populated [TS]

  by her about like distant relatives it [TS]

  has a artificial intelligence which is [TS]

  called a mind that is one of her [TS]

  ancestors and the main character also [TS]

  has memory implants of her answer a [TS]

  couple of her ancestors a [TS]

  memories and personas and the mind that [TS]

  controls the space station is slowly [TS]

  going insane and nobody can understand [TS]

  why and all of the kind of most able [TS]

  characters have been drafted by the [TS]

  Emperor so there are no longer on the [TS]

  station and their presumed dead so it's [TS]

  kind of like the b-team is running the [TS]

  station and it is just a great i really [TS]

  enjoyed it [TS]

  kudos to her and she would get my vote [TS]

  then the final one is after the fall [TS]

  before the fall during the fall last [TS]

  night [TS]

  yes winter is coming when threat is [TS]

  coming had started reading that 1i said [TS]

  finish it's pretty good it's a as the [TS]

  title might suggest it is a tale of pre [TS]

  post and during apocalypse where these [TS]

  strange aliens come and wipe out earth [TS]

  but as they're wiping out earth they [TS]

  save some people and put them in a shell [TS]

  which is basically an artificial [TS]

  structure that is on earth but all of [TS]

  Earth is ravaged and they are safe and [TS]

  sound in this structure and basically [TS]

  it's a zoo and I you the people who are [TS]

  in there have been teleported there and [TS]

  they don't have never seen any of these [TS]

  aliens they don't really understand why [TS]

  they're trapped together but they start [TS]

  they try to you know continue the human [TS]

  race but it fails for a variety of [TS]

  reasons radiation damage and all that [TS]

  kind of stuff so eventually the aliens [TS]

  give them a time machine that only that [TS]

  works sporadically so that they have [TS]

  start sending back people to before the [TS]

  apocalypse where they abduct children [TS]

  and bring them back to after the [TS]

  apocalypse [TS]

  wow so that they can repopulate the [TS]

  planet it's very interesting i try to [TS]

  read some of that I got so far that i [TS]

  just i just could not make any more I'm [TS]

  sorry just was spindly headed time [TS]

  machine traveling and child abduction [TS]

  better there's time to have a child [TS]

  abduction and the FBI is involved in a [TS]

  math professor who gets pregnant and so [TS]

  the aliens destroy the planet but then [TS]

  they wanted to save the human race for [TS]

  their zoo [TS]

  yeah they put them in a zoo unclear why [TS]

  and the the aliens are called Tesla [TS]

  these for some reason okay [TS]

  it is an odd fellow but I i thought it [TS]

  was a I thought I could see why it was [TS]

  nominated I think it's worth a [TS]

  nomination but I don't think it's really [TS]

  so you're gonna go without a red stretch [TS]

  station drifting I am and not san diego [TS]

  2014 definitely hot sandy hit all right [TS]

  apparently that will be no award [TS]

  Oh Jerry 24 ouch ouch that's a bad sign [TS]

  alright and just to remind everybody out [TS]

  there who wants to read along with us [TS]

  our next book club will be about the [TS]

  hugo nominees we've covered some of them [TS]

  before redshirts a novel with three [TS]

  codes by john scalzi hey he's back that [TS]

  was nominated we did a whole episode [TS]

  about it called the insular nervous fear [TS]

  with either speak of it again but but [TS]

  we'll we'll touch on it briefly in that [TS]

  episode [TS]

  captain for patrols Alliance which is a [TS]

  for cozia novel we did a whole episode [TS]

  about that too and that was actually a [TS]

  really good for causing a novel the best [TS]

  one in in in many years [TS]

  so those we've covered before but we [TS]

  will also be talking about black out by [TS]

  mirror grant get ready i read it i read [TS]

  it to 2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson that [TS]

  should be very interesting [TS]

  uh-huh when is reading it now as [TS]

  involuntary and throwing the crescent [TS]

  moon by solid and Achmed which i also [TS]

  read and I'm not going to give away what [TS]

  I think about these books but those are [TS]

  the books that are nominated we will be [TS]

  covering the next time so their best [TS]

  enjoyed by audible.com yes that's right [TS]

  makes you take you to audible i'm not [TS]

  sure if all those books i think all [TS]

  those books are actually available [TS]

  inaudible [TS]

  so thanks to my sponsor of course [TS]

  audible.com go to audible podcast.com [TS]

  slash incomparable yeah and thanks to my [TS]

  panelists there they did a good job they [TS]

  read the books and some of the stories [TS]

  and Scott read everything because Scott [TS]

  is the best going to thank you i have a [TS]

  lot of free time apparently so I just I [TS]

  just I just keep reading something to [TS]

  fill the height [TS]

  all you do is walk and read it's true I [TS]

  i was walking around my kitchen to my [TS]

  little table reading earlier today [TS]

  wow that's a that's great when you can [TS]

  combine them through two of my favorite [TS]

  activities walking and reading that's [TS]

  also canning now with about different [TS]

  tunings same same place he likes kaneis [TS]

  leave Leave it's a canning to your wife [TS]

  gland fleischmann thanks for coming back [TS]

  on the podcast well we'll have you back [TS]

  for the hugo episode 2 that's great well [TS]

  you know it was record another podcast [TS]

  while we recorded this one night my coat [TS]

  up [TS]

  well that's good i think it is a great [TS]

  to be back yes for you back again [TS]

  nice to have you and Dan Morgan you are [TS]

  on every podcast thank you for being on [TS]

  this one too [TS]

  great great great to be here and I'm [TS]

  sure it'll be a long long time before I [TS]

  appear on another podcast yeah exactly [TS]

  it could be a long two days hours four [TS]

  hours right and that's not like a star [TS]

  trek to wrath of khan code right if days [TS]

  14 hours you get total number of [TS]

  podcasts and you know huh i'm confused [TS]

  now [TS]

  alright thanks to everybody out there [TS]

  for listening you can always go to our [TS]

  Goodreads group to see what we're going [TS]

  to read next we'll just monitor the [TS]

  incomparable twitter feed at the [TS]

  incomparable but we are on Goodreads and [TS]

  we try to keep that updated sometimes we [TS]

  fail but we're on there and we will [TS]

  listen to your discussion posts and [TS]

  things too so go to goodreads and search [TS]

  for the income from book club if you'd [TS]

  like to join us stand until next time I [TS]

  am your host Jason smell signing off [TS]

  thanks for listening [TS]

  nobody was in the chair it was [TS]

  mts nobody comes out for the book about [TS]

  bastards [TS]