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Attack of the inaccurate blurbs

I just finished reading the rather fun Radio Freefall by Matthew Jarpe, a respectable slice of post-cyberpunk rock-and-roll SF.

It's a good book, and one I'm happy to recommend to all and sundry. However, I'm not so sure about the cover quotes, which describe it as a book that displays the "bloodlines of Heinlein and Varley". Sure, there are aspects of the two in the work, and after all Heinlein did sort of invent the rock SF sub-genre with "The Green Hills Of Earth".

But there are much closer antecedents, and much better comparisons in the blue-collar Grateful Dead-tinged SF of Allen Steele's Clarke County books, or John Shirley's A Song Called Youth trilogy - or (and I worry that I seem to be one of the few that have read this) Bradley Denton's superb slice of musical alt-history Wrack and Roll.

It's easy to imagine Aqualung standing alongside the Bastard Child, building a lunar colony, and the Snake Vendors sharing a billing with Blunt Instrument.

Just not with Rhysling...



Nov. 25th, 2008 07:07 pm (UTC)
Re: Never sure when it's appropriate to comment on these things
Thanks for the reply.

I know all about the blurb thing (I've had some of my reviews quoted in odd ways in the past), and you should hear Charlie Stross rant on the subject.

(Gibson's Steely Dan and Eno influences amused me a lot when I first read him... And yes, I did spot a touch of Ellison in there. Deathbird Stories still rocks...)

(Oh, and I picked up the book initially because of the cover art! But then I have John Harris' final colour sketch for the UK Schismatrix on my hall wall...)