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Authors: Michael John Harrison

Tags: #General, #Fantasy, #Fiction, #Science Fiction, #Short Stories (Single Author)


BOOK: Viriconium
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Table of Contents



“A Zen master of prose.” —Iain Banks, author of
The Algebraist

“That M. John Harrison is not a Nobel Laureate proves the bankruptcy of the literary establishment. Austere, unflinching and desperately moving, he is one of the very great writers alive today. And yes, he writes fantasy and SF, though of a form, scale and brilliance that it shames not only the rest of the field, but most modern fiction.”

—China Miéville, author of
Iron Council



“In the best tradition of the finest writing,
is universal and particular together. It is the ultimate city, the very essence of what we understand such a collection of buildings, thoroughfares, monuments, institutions, concerns, inhabitants, lives and fates to be.”

—Iain Banks, author of
The Algebraist

“Exemplary fictions of unease shot through with poetic insight and most beautifully written.” —Angela Carter, author of
The Magic Toyshop

is a scintillating kaleidoscope of cities.” —

“Beautifully written and disconcertingly haunting.” —
Time Out

“The fantasy is grounded in M. John Harrison’s sense of reality. . . . It is lifelike. It is also written in the kind of prose which, as you tap a nail on a crystal glass, never rings false.” —

“[Harrison] writes with a cool and disciplined hand. His prose is always elegant, but never vain . . . unerringly he seeks the underside of things.”

Times Literary Supplement

“A witty and truly imaginative writer.” —
Literary Review

“Enjoyably rancid imagination . . . extraordinary, lively, and moving.”

Sunday Times

“M. John Harrison’s
series is brilliant, beautiful, and absolutely essential reading. The breadth of vision and imagination alone in these books is unparalleled. It is truly one of a kind and will continue to haunt you in the best possible way for years.”

—Jonathan Carroll, author of
White Apples

“M. John Harrison’s
sequence is the jewel in the crown of twentieth-century fantasy, a work that proves irrefutably that fantastic literature can be Art with a capital A, holding its own alongside the very finest writing of our time, or any other.”

—Elizabeth Hand, author of
Mortal Love

“M. John Harrison is a true master of English prose. He possesses the eye of a painter, the ear of a bard, and a rigorous and playful intellect. The
novels and stories are infused with a haunting genius that never falters.” —K. J. Bishop, author of The Etched City





“Profoundly thoughtful, complex, fascinating . . . well worth the wait.”

Kirkus Reviews
(starred review)

“Harrison’s talent for brilliant, reality-bending SF is on display yet again with this three-tiered tale. . . . This is space opera for intelligentsia, as Harrison tweaks aspects of astrophysics, fantasy and humanism to hum right along with the blinking holograms in a welcome and long overdue return.” —
Publishers Weekly
(starred review)

“Mind-bending in both its conceptual framework and literary deftness.”

Entertainment Weekly
(A rating)

“An ambitious, accomplished space opera that brings [Harrison] to the genre’s front rank . . . surely one of the best novels of the year, irrespective of genre.” —
San Francisco Chronicle

“A story of wonders, both on the personal and the cosmic level . . . Harrison has done something remarkable. He has turned descriptions of quantum mechanics and astrophysics into a poetry of longing, and awe, with an almost Sylvia Plath–like sense of dread.
is a rare piece of science fiction, and one of the finest I have read. It is also one the best-written books I have read this year.” —
Boston Globe

“Succeeds in evoking the sense of wonder that science fiction readers look for in the best of the genre.” —
New York Times Book Review

“Sentence by sentence [Harrison] is almost certainly one of the most skilled SF writers alive . . . an unusually strong and even, for all its brutality, touching example of how character and physics can illuminate each other in the best hard SF.
is likely to be one of the most rewarding and challenging novels of the year, and goes a long way toward explaining just what it is that Harrison can do that other writers find so astonishing.”


“Here we have ‘space opera’ that brilliantly transcends its humble pulp origins while simultaneously glorying in them. The result is a gripping, thrilling, meditative novel which can be read and enjoyed on multiple levels. . . . In direct line from Cordwainer Smith and Keith Laumer, Michael Moorcock and Norman Spinrad, Harrison has adapted the conceits of space opera until the form is big enough to hold all the marvels he jams within.” —
(Editor’s A+ pick)

“M. John Harrison’s
is not just among the best SF novels of the year—it’s without question the best read of the year. . . . Not since Stepan Chapman’s
The Troika
and Iain M. Banks’s
Use of Weapons
has a novel managed to so single-handedly revitalize and re-energize the SF field. . . . Harrison has combined his astute, ruthless characterization with the SF form, to create a work that bristles and seethes with energy and intelligence, a work both playful and sublimely serious. . . . Imagine the best pure adrenaline SF novel twinned to a stunning mainstream novel to get an idea of the overall effect. . . . The pleasures of this book are wide and numerous. I cannot recommend Light highly enough.” —SFSite

“A wonderful, playful and solidly genre-based masterpiece . . . Don’t hesitate. Buy this book and read it. You will thank me.” —

“The ride is uproarious, breath-taking, exhilarating. . . . Gem-like images blink into existence, perfect in their place, both wise and sly. . . . This is a novel of full spectrum literary dominance, making the transition from the grainily commonplace now to a wild far future seem not just easy but natural, and connecting the minimal and the spectacular with grace and elegance. It is a work of—and about—the highest order.” —

“An increasingly complex and dazzling narrative . . .
depicts its author as a wit, an awesomely fluent and versatile prose stylist, and an SF thinker as dedicated to probing beneath surfaces as William Gibson is to describing how the world looks when reflected in them. . . . SF fans and skeptics alike are advised to head towards this
.” —

“Harrison’s writing is top-notch and involving. He takes old ideas and mechanisms from early science fiction and invigorates them with a sense of possibility and even, strange within this dark and foreboding book, transcendence and hope.” —

“The sort of book that leaves you wondering, in the best way possible, what the heck really happened . . . a wild, satisfying ride.”



“M. John Harrison’s
is a remarkable book—easily my favorite SF novel in the last decade, maybe longer—and the image that remains in my head after the book was done is that of light as foam, like the sea foam ‘between the water and the dry land’ . . . a book that exists in the spaces between things . . . very lovely.” —Neil Gaiman,
New York Times
–bestselling author of
Endless Nights
American Gods

“M. John Harrison proves what only those crippled by respectability still doubt—that science fiction can be literature, of the very greatest kind.
puts most modern fiction to shame. It’s a magnificent book.”

—China Miéville, award-winning author of
Perdido Street Station

BOOK: Viriconium
3.75Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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