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Godplayers
Damien Broderick
Thunder's Mouth paperback $14.95

review by Tony Lee

Highlander meets The Matrix and Sliders in this hugely enjoyable SF-fantasy, where orphaned young man August Seebeck discovers that the 'many worlds' hypothesis is completely true (at least in his reality!). As an only child, August is shocked to learn that he actually has several brothers and sisters, and that his parents escaped the plane crash that he believed killed them years ago. Most fantastic of all, though, is the revelation that August has a major role to play in the Contest of Worlds, and is seemingly fated to wield the cosmic weaponry of X-calibre in the Vorpal Players' ongoing war against the K-Machines.

In no time at all, reluctant hero August is pitched into a dizzying scenario reminiscent of Arthurian myth, filtered through the influential milieu of Zelazny's Amber series, and finds himself opening inter-dimensional gateways ('Schwelles') between cognates, and surfing across the paradoxical multiverse of parallel Earths that are entirely divergent or not too dissimilar from our own. No wonder he feels rather like Wonderland's Alice falling down the wrong rabbit hole.

"That cat is a blabbermouth. Despite their reputation for cryptic obliquity, I've never met a cat that didn't blurt out the lot first chance it found."

Of course, August is smitten by the mysterious and beautiful Lune, and is bewildered yet amazed when he meets the Seebeck clan - which includes Septimus the armourer, the prankster Reverend Jules, chivalrous Toby, Maybelline (who's sexually involved with a sentient alien vegetable), and starship captain Jan - returning to a violent version of the Solar system after a time-dilated quest for the Xon code. Can nervous August find his way to Yggdrasil Station and avert the long anticipated Doomsday simply by proving he's not just a bunch of numbers but a free man? With a tidal wave of positively hard-SF concepts (owing as much to Heidegger as Hawking), a consistently amusing line in wry, postmodernist humour, and some quite evidently loony imaginings, Damien Broderick's Godplayers is a compelling treat for any and all fans of wacky cross-genre storytelling and is strongly recommended.
previously published in Starburst
Godplayers





K-Machines
- book 2 in the
Players In The
Contest Of Worlds

series, due out
10th April 2006



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