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The People's Republic of Everything

por Nick Mamatas

Otros autores: Ver la sección otros autores.

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724289,698 (3.64)Ninguno
Features a decade's worth of crimes and fantasies; new fiction; and the author's preferred text of the acclaimed short novel "Under My Roof".
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Mostrando 4 de 4
I've had Nick Mamatas on my reading radar for quite some time but only now decided to jump in. It helps that I was given the opportunity by Netgalley.

What did I expect? Um. Almost nothing at all. I just saw that gnome on the cover and went, "That's pretty sarcastic." Okay. I'm on board.

So! Short stories!

I'm not going to do a breakdown other than to mention the ones I loved and briefly mention what stood out with the others, but that should be enough. For the most part, I really enjoyed everything. The sarcasm and the black-mirror type punch to the gut were probably the very best aspects. :)

To start out, I absolutely loved the AI HP Lovecraft. To make a composite of the man from his letters and hear about how much he feared to be a consciousness trapped in a bottle to be a self-aware composite of the same man TRAPPED IN A COMPUTATIONAL BOTTLE. It's sick. It's plausible. It's a great commentary on Lovecraftian fiction while striking out on its own and owning it. :)

I loved the Marx and Engles mystery solving duo, too.

But you know what really stood out for me? It was the deadly real-to-life story of a woman who was mercilessly brutalized on twitter and facebook, being called a SJW, and how it ruined her life and how she finally got to the point where she could start living again without being harassed. Only the internet never forgets. ... her revenge was hardly enough and this story actually made me cry with the injustice of it.

I liked most of the others well enough but none of them except the very last short novel really stood out like these other three. The last one had a great concept explored a bit more deeply than I've seen elsewhere, but not quite as deeply as, say, Corey Doctorow's Walkway. I mention that because there's a TON of similarities.

Let's make our own country! Secede from the USA! Make sure we back it up with a homemade atomic bomb! Lol, good start, and excellent exploration, including peace treaties across the world, societal ramifications, a bit of kidnapping and extraditions. :) It was easily the most fun, especially when the guy with the lawnmower made the US government back up and do some chores. :)

This is definitely an author I need to keep my eyes open for. :)



( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
s book... oh this book... I have gone many rounds of mental tug-of-war with myself regarding how to rate this book. To start I must admit that I did not, could not, read all of the stories straight through. The writing was well done. The technique, excellent. BUT the content was so obviously saturated with zealous political ferver, it felt like I was being smacked in the face with a rotting propaganda pamphlet...repeatedly. Can you tell that I don't like politics (unless it's Court Politics) mixing with my favorite leisurely activity? That being said, there were pacing issues and plain old boredom issues so a skimming I went. Man oh man how I skimmed. That's never a good sign! If it weren't for how nicely worded and structured the sentences were I'd have swiftly placed this in the DNF bin. Thanks to the tiny grammar freak residing at my core there was a part of me that enjoyed this solely on the merit of its technique. Accounting for this and the differing tastes of each reader, I bumped the rating up to 3 stars. I know there will be those that will enjoy this book thoroughly but I was not one of them. The humor I originally believed the book would be peppered with was sorely missing and I just didn't enjoy the stories.

NOW I must also admit, for what it's worth, that I am not an avid reader of Compilation books. I gave it a shot and dipped my toes in these waters by first inhaling Faster, Stronger and More Beautiful. That book is a compilation of interconnected futuristic vignettes and it opened my eyes to the beauty of the genre. I know it's unfair to compare the two, especially since the content of both books differs so, but I haven't read many other Compilations to help create a baseline. Without a proper pool of literary peers to reference against, F,SaMB ended up being quite influential in my rating and therefore it's in my review.

Overall: Will I reread this? No. Will I read more of Nick Mamatas' work? Probably not BUT I will also say that based on the writing alone, others might fall reverently in love with this book and I hope they do. Do I reccomend this? Well, yes I do and I know it might seem contradictory to my review but I truly believe that this has a market... just not in my neighborhood.

*** I was given a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review *** ( )
  BethYacoub | Jan 11, 2019 |
Note: I received an Advance Reading Copy of this book through NetGalley for an honest review.

Nick Mamatas is one of those writers (and editors) I know of, but I couldn’t name one of his works from the top of my head. I have read one or two collections he edited at Haikasoru, and whenever I come across other works of his, they always seem to fit what I like in my fiction. So when his upcoming collection The People’s Republic of Everything came up for review on NetGalley, with a gorgeous cover, I couldn’t resist, and I am glad I didn’t.

This is a collection of stories Mamatas has written this past decade. Shorter stories and one novella (Under My Roof), covering various topics. A common element in a lot of stories is politics and political philosophy (communism mostly).Why do we follow? What does it take to stand up? But there is also a very interesting take on AI, and taking personalities from the past (In this case H.P. Lovecraft) to create a new AI. What are the implication for that personality? And another story about the consequences of social networks, and the doxxing of people for small slights in the public eye. One woman thinks after a couple of years she is safe again to live her life, but finds out quickly that the internet never forgets. One that hit home for me was a story about a neighborhood chat app (called Cranki.ly in the story, but totally based on Nextdoor) and how one person uses the app to wind other people up.

As always with a collection, there were some stories I liked, and some I liked less. For me there were too many stories about communism, and some of them (We Never Sleep and Arbeitskraft) were very similar to each other. Other stories were very enjoyable, and I liked the novella Under My Roof. The overall genre I would classify as speculative, as most stories are set in the current day or near future, with some fantastical elements in them. Four out of five stars. ( )
  divinenanny | May 29, 2018 |
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Features a decade's worth of crimes and fantasies; new fiction; and the author's preferred text of the acclaimed short novel "Under My Roof".

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