Thunders Mouth Press, 2005 (2005)
Read an Excerpt
Reviewed by J. A. Kaszuba Locke
ugust Seebeck's psychic great-aunt Tansy admits to finding a corpse in the bathtub on Saturday nights, but by Sunday morn the corpse is gone. August passes it off as '
' until the seventh Saturday night when he witnesses a corpse being
into the second- floor bathroom. What fazes him the most is seeing the
step out of the bathroom mirror. Thus begins August's journey into a multi-universe '
Contest of Worlds
'. The battle includes
he corpse deliverers are Doctor Lune (Lyoon) Katha Sarit Sagara, and Maybelline Seebeck (one of many siblings August is yet to meet). August notes that Lune has the same silver hieroglyphics on the sole of one foot as he does. As he holds his foot up to the mirror, August is suddenly transported into another cosmos, where an elevator opens to release all kinds of beings. He meets more siblings and is taught the powers within him. Broderick's creation includes a world where women are much taller than men, another which has been torn apart by tidal waves and inhabited by dinosaurs, yet another of '
lean and lightly furred
' beings, and a fourth with no humans, just machines. All of them are
. August now wears a leather glove on his right hand, covering gold hieroglyphs inserted in his palm.
ust as August was bent on understanding the
, I was bent on following his story. Whenever I thought I was grasping an understanding, along came a crack, and I fell through it to begin over again. In Broderick's
, he says, '
All too often ... today's SF readers are cheated of our quite lengthy tradition, as many classic texts have been allowed to fall out of print. For those who do know and love the old wonders, I hope this novel rekindles fond memories ... of writers Roger Zelazny and Fritz Leiber.
' Perhaps Broderick has written a tale beyond my reach. I recommend
to sci-fi aficionados, who relish a '
' and scifi including inconclusive twists in complex contexts, or for readers gifted with a mathematical mind.
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