August 1, 2007
Brasyl - Ian McDonald
Well, yes. Brasyl is a book that could have been written for me to order. It's as if someone read my mind and put in everything that I want: Neal Stephenson Baroque Cycle 1700's adventure and mystery, William Gibson Pattern Recognition modern day post cyberpunk, near future state of the art Gibson McDonald cyberpunk, wonderful poetic writing and a load of quantum physics. Oh, and some of the best TV shows never to get made.
The plots are a perfect example of how to hook readers in and then escalate and escalate. Everything seems inevitable, yet unguessable. Each of the three stories starts with an small incident, then things get worse, bigger, more important. Until at the end everything collides in an excellently satisfying climax. The characters are interesting, never pandering to be likeable but instead real, with conflicts and faults, and yet you end up rooting for them.
There are hints and flavours of all sorts of modern and recent classic SF in there, what Ian McDonald does brilliantly is mix everything up, add his own flavourings and style and make it all fresh and new, he did it with River Of Gods and he's done it with Brasyl.
I really loved Brasyl. It's my perfect example of modern Science Fiction.
Iain Banks was interviewed by Farah Mendlesohn at the BSFA meeting last night and I made a lightning raid into London to see it.First up she interviewed both Iain Banks and Iain M Banks, and in fact one of Farah's... Read More