Posted by : May 15, 2001
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Accidental Creatures by Anne Harris
Ten people attended this meeting, and one person submitted comments by e-mail. This meeting’s topic was Accidental Creatures, the second novel by Anne Harris. The book is set in a future Detroit where the auto industry has gone into decline, and biotech is the city’s big new industry. The story involves genetic engineering, labor strikes, mutants, evil corporate executives, artificial intelligence, and funny accountants. The large cast includes scientists, white-collar workers, blue-collar workers, fringe people, and some who aren’t really human. Nine of the people at the meeting had finished the book.
We liked a lot about this book. Harris convincingly portrays the passion of the biotech scientists for their work. We don’t want to give too much of the plot away, but we found the secret science project was fascinating. The depiction of people on the fringe evoked a cyberpunk atmosphere that many of us hadn’t
Posted by : May 1, 2001
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The Silk Code by Paul Levinson
Fourteen people attended this meeting, including one first-time participant. The topic of this meeting was Paul Levinson’s first novel, The Silk Code. Levinson is well known in the SF community as (now former) President of the Science Fiction Writers of America. The Silk Code is a near-future SF police novel featuring a New York forensic detective, Phil D’Amato, who was the protagonist of several stories published in Analog. In this book, D’Amato investigates a series of murders and gets wrapped up in a complicated conspiracy involving Amish scientists and a hidden society of Neanderthals. Nine of us had read the book.
This book starts off well with a fast-paced first section, in which D’Amato has his initial encounter with the scientific Amish. He faces weird scientific threats including incendiary fireflies. We enjoyed how he applies logic and scientific knowledge to get himself out of trouble. Levinson’s clean prose style, combined