Paul Di Filippo Writes Up The Human Division for Barnes and Noble Review
Posted on May 15, 2013 Posted by John Scalzi 10 Comments
And it’s a very good read (and also a positive review — the two are not always related), looking at THD in the context of the military science fiction genre, and giving readers a useful overview of that storied sub-genre. Here’s the takeaway, which hearkens back to the overview:
Entertainingly exemplifying the maxim that “All diplomacy is a continuation of war by other means,” The Human Division is the type of intelligently crafted and inventive military-political science fiction that reminds us that though we might be able to pinpoint a genre’s takeoff point, nobody can predict how far it it will fly.
I’ll take that. Check it out.
Rather, it harkens to the work of such predecessors as Christopher Anvil and Poul Anderson and Keith Laumer, whose tales traditionally blended battles of wits with sporadic bouts of thoughtful and even reluctant violence.
I wish to complain that I started reading the human division last night, thinking “I’ll just read the first chapter” and ended up going to bed at 3am in the morning (and having a 6am wake up call from my 2 year-old daughter). If you keep writing books this good I’ll never get any sleep!
Starbird — Gotta be aware of that with John’s books. I’ve read several of his books just that way. “I’ll finish this chapter and go to bed.” Ha! Worth it, but work suffers the next day.
So true. One of my adult sons and myself, we both read Redshirts in one sitting. No backbone to stop.
I’m a member of the “read it in one fell swoop” club, too. Given that we can’t manage to ration our marshmallows, we should probably start a program to help us learn to cope with the problem. The first step in the program is locking Scalzi in a closet so he’ll keep writing books to feed our addiction….
So, is Mr. di Filippo being intentionally retrograde when he channels Clausewitz, or is it simply a misquote? (What Clausewitz wrote was, “Der Krieg ist eine blosse Fortsetzung der Politik mit andern Mittteln.”, i.e. it’s the ‘diplomacy’ that’s getting continued, not the war.)
Dammit, I gotta buy another Scalzi book? When does it end?
Thinking about it, its actually OMW:THD isn’t it? Which seems like it could be a cool mnemonic for something.
Getting lumped in with Dickens falls into the “not bad” category, no?
Didn’t realize Zhou Enlai made that clever variation of Clausewitz’ famous quote. Interesting. Guy had a sense of humor.