Cheeseburger Gothic

First Discussion thread for After America.

Posted July 10, 2010 by John Birmingham
Those who haven't finished, or started, be warned, there will undoubtedly be massive spoilers.

For the first topic I'm gonna turn the floor over to Beeso, who was muttering darkly on Twunter this week about AA's possible anti green bias.

I dont think there is one, but everybody reads a different book. There are characters who have issues with the Greens who have become a very significant third political force in Seattle, and one of those characters is Kipper, which might appear to lend sympathy to any Green view. However, I'd point out that all of that back story happens off stage, setting up scenario's for the final book, and Kipper has issues with everyone.

Because of the ecological effects and aftermath of the Wave there is fair deal of discussion and thought about environmental issues by the POV actors in the book, but they do so in character. If Sandra Harvey, the Greens leader, got a POV scene you'd read a very different exposition of the GM crop issue than you would in a scene narrated by, say, Miguel. There's no compelling story need to meet Sandra just yet and popping her simply in to 'balance' the politics of the book would be ... well... gratuitous PC bullshit. Insert rant by Murph here.

Anyway, I promised to let Beeso have first crack at any thread, so here 'tis.

120 Responses to ‘First Discussion thread for After America.’

Lobes reckons...

Posted July 10, 2010
Damn, still havnt read it. Will bow out now for fear of spoilers. Have at it guys and dont bemuse the trolls.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan asserts...

Posted July 10, 2010
I haven't started because I haven't received mine yet, but I will comment as if I've read it. I desperately want to belong to a greater whole.

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Abigail mutters...

Posted July 10, 2010
JB I'm closing my eyes so I don't read the text above; just dropping in to mention that I boughht WW the ohter night in an effort to make you a rich bitch and may I say, it is a fantastic thriller, not a genre I read normally. I am hooked and loving the sound of pages turned fast.

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Abigail asserts...

Posted July 10, 2010
..so After America a must. Esp if there's cowboys; love cowboys, not enough of them in lit'film these days.

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Abe puts forth...

Posted July 10, 2010
Too soon!

(I'm trying to make it last.)

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Shifty_McGee mutters...

Posted July 10, 2010
I was astounded by the killin' off of Miguel's clan, it was very... visceral. Although as the Curious Case of Cmdr. Daniel Black shows, NO ONE IS SAFE, EVER.

I was disappointed that the Gurkas didn't make an appearence, but their contract would have been well-expired by now, wouldn't it?

Also, how did the shark's boat get taken off Jules? Based on my weak, wikipedia inspired, knowledge of admiralty law, shouldn't it be theirs for the taking?

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jennicki ducks in to say...

Posted July 10, 2010
There is an ANTI WAVE and everything REAPPEARS

mwahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

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Abigail reckons...

Posted July 10, 2010
Abe, you and I are going to have to vet our peeks at cbg threads for a while!

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Abigail mumbles...

Posted July 10, 2010
Jenn, I think you just wrote the final book in the trilogy.

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Brian puts forth...

Posted July 10, 2010
Tsk. We were waiting for Beeso.

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Tarl would have you know...

Posted July 10, 2010
I have the book, but real life has intervened and precluded reading it. Maybe this rainy weekend...

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Chaz is gonna tell you...

Posted July 10, 2010
Don't see it as anti green per se.

If you have a nation to feed and get power for, as president you have to make harsh decisions. Pre-wave politics become luxuries really so considering re-starting brown coal power stations if even for a while is chicken shit to the ecological damage done the the wave. Same goes for Nuke power.

Green parties on the whole have more 'eclectic' manifestos because they don't have to rule and in reality they know that. In europe when the greens started to get a greater % of the vote their policies started to change. Same as our Greens will if they become powerbrokers in the senate.

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lostatlunch reckons...

Posted July 10, 2010
with an engineer, Kipper is just pragmatic about results.

Any other President or leader wants to be reelected.. The first "for the people" president in a very long time.

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Bondiboy66 asserts...

Posted July 10, 2010
Shifty, the Aussies just took the boat because...well they could I guess. Yeah, shame the gurkhas buggered off too.

And I'm with Chaz - desparate times called for desparate measurs, and green sensibilities on things like GM crops have to take a backseat to getting people fed.

BTW, I'm only halfway through...but references to things like Bedak Whitetails, Abe Frellman's snags and Krist Novocelic have raised a few laughs!

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Brian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 10, 2010
I'm with Chaz. For lotsa reasons.

Got hold of a book from Gutenberg about a bunch of American agronomists tooling thru China in 1904. Discussions about productivity, recycling . . .element measures . .potassium etc It was freakin' hard to do it in China . . .everything was recycled back into the fields. Chinese productivity was 5 -10 times higher than 1904 American . . . and it all came back to soil types,rice growing and a very well developed recycling system done by hand . . .recall 90 percent of the poulation was village based.. Unachievable anywhere else absent modern fertilisers and pesticides AKA 'factory farming'

Only people worth being called 'green' are farmers. Bedak is as 'green' as it can meaningfully get.

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Orin has opinions thus...

Posted July 10, 2010
Page 392 - "Encryption Sets" should probably be "Encryption Keys" as it looks like you are discussing the swapping of encryption keys prior to setting up an encrypted communication session. This is usually called "key exchange" - see the article "Key Exchange" in wikipedia for verification of terminology.

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Brian is gonna tell you...

Posted July 10, 2010
Orin.

Point.

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Moko swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 10, 2010
Green issue?. If shit works, use it. Think they lost much of their brain trust to REALLY consider 'green' outside of growing yer own veges. Hydrogen engines and Miguel making his own solar panels might have to wait a fraction.

Convenience is the driver for technology with humans from now on. If I had been shovelling the family's shit and turning it into fertiliser for the fkn corn and then 'can-do Newman' came along and said, "Look, here's a flushing dunny and a packet of fertiliser but in order for you to have it you have to supply my family with spuds...", whatcha gonna do?.

You need power and transport, and you need it yesterday.

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beeso ducks in to say...

Posted July 10, 2010
Look I completely understand the way the Green parties are portrayed in the book. There are still more loopy lefty types populating the party political then there are pragmatic hippies like myself, which is why I'm not a card carrying member of the greens.

What did jar with me was the use of GM crops on two continents. It just doesn't stack up. GM is more a profit driven company movement based in the US and all those companies are gone post wave. So who and why would be pushing GM.

Ok so I understand that this is fiction and that GM might work fine in the post wave universe but to me it would make more sence that with actual crop gripe being higher than profit motive that we would have gone back to very localized specialized crops rather than global GM ones.

Look I had the same problem with The Wire. Watched the first episode and the cops were typing reports on a typewriter. In 2001. Yeah right. Couldn't keep watching cause that just jarred at me.

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Naut would have you know...

Posted July 10, 2010
We have discussed characters having their own voice here before.

It is reasonable to think that for many, post wave, environmental issues would take a backseat to survival.

As JB states above, the characters are just expressing their view. I didn't see any anti-green agenda in the book and from discussions with JB , I don't think he has an anti-green agenda.

Anti slouch bike riding vegetarian agenda maybe.

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Brian asserts...

Posted July 10, 2010
OK. I get what Beeso is saying.

I think JB has touched on an interesting theme here with the Greens.

First green movements are predominantly urban based or are drawn from the urban classes. With the Wave the US Farmers lobby has to all intents disappeared so there's no counter balancing force. The rise of a green power bloc is quite plausible given that the rise of other obscure groups after a crisis. Very roughly the Reds in Japan after WW2, and the Nazis after WW1. The problem is now they have to make their agenda work. What we're seeing is a disconnect between cleaving to ideology versus 'this is way the world works now'. The people trying to make it work see the disconnects. Cultural Revolution springs to mind as well.. . ideology driving the urban classes out into the countryside followed by famine.

Not sure about the GM crops as a story device. Possible that it was sourced out of South America, South Africa etc (thinking of seed viabilty after 4 years) . . .that could take care of the back story. Given the high insect population, crops that could protect themselves would be important.

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Orin swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 10, 2010
Great take on GM crops in "Windup Girl" (Won this year's Nebula, may win the Hugo) - future where GM was adopted wholesale - reduced biodiversity - along come successive plagues that wipe out the non-bio-diverse homogeneous crops sold by the GM companies - global famine and wars to get access to seed banks that host original bio-diverse natural stock.

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beeso ducks in to say...

Posted July 10, 2010
Having reread birmos intro I'll just add this. I wouldn't want a green character POV to balance the book and I have no issue with Miguel or Caitlin having positive thoughts about GM because in the post Wave universe, it seems to work.

My problem is that GM crops up as a viable alternative, I just don't find it logical. But hey it's birmos world, he makes the rules.

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Havock puts forth...

Posted July 10, 2010
I loved the GM issue in AA, but I see it as a separate issue to the prevalence of tree hugging unwashed need capping fkn feral muppets getting into American politics post the wave event.

For some reason, maybe it was gummite fact finding, maybe the tree huggers were in Europe living an alternate life style, but I’m willing to be they initially got elected on the back of the POST wave and during wave DAMGE and storms, kinda due to the hysteria and shit that came down., ya can just see them saying its a result of all the un- natural things we have done tec etc. Then, muppets, well first order muppets elect them in and BINGO, the wave recedes. Then all they want to do, is make America a fkn green zone...almost right really, except it should have been CAMO green as in MILITARY. I can see with great fkn clarity the lentil eating brigade impeding the whole fkn process.

CAP’EM...cap the fkn lot, better still, send’em down to TEXAS!.

As for GM, well given the climatic changes and growing requirements, I see it being viewed as a viable alternative, myself, I’m not a fan of GM...the down stream effects and all that and thats about as fkn unwashed as i am likely to get

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Havock is gonna tell you...

Posted July 10, 2010
AND..AND, I'm fkn sure there would have been B1 LANCERS stationed somewhere as opposed to B52's..fkn hell, talk about giving a bloke a T model ford ffsakes.

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Orin puts forth...

Posted July 11, 2010
Speaking of (possible) Tuckerizations - what happened to "Orin Thomas" - every other character mentioned in the cast list at the front got name checked when they died. I'm guessing dead from flood - but no mention of a body. Last seen working cattle with Adam ...

As for the greenies - remember the dude that put Birmo on this path in the first place, going on about how the world would be a better place without the US - wasn't he of the feral manky wilderness society greenie variety rather than the respectable Bob Brown greenie variety. Anyway - we don't have an explanation of the wave, but Birmo has hinted that at some point we will get one. What if some radically violent techno-greenies were responsible ... (it is that or the space lizards under emperor Blarkon)

... Would have been cool if the other B52 pilot's callsign had been "Space Lizard" instead of Eightball.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan would have you know...

Posted July 11, 2010
I tried not to read this thread, but I just couldn't help myself. It is happening again, just like with WW. I am most unhappy.

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Havock mumbles...

Posted July 11, 2010
Yeah, I figured that there would have been a WIZZO, or weapons system operator somewhere, that would have been a current techno gizmo guru , prolly named Orion, Alas, .......well, its water under the bridge i suspect.

PNB....like a moth to the flame

I am also not sure that BOB BROWN gets the respectable hat either, I reckon he's a closet nutter greenie.

PNB.....In time my good friend..in time

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Moko asserts...

Posted July 11, 2010
...but fuck I shone as a horse wrangling mormon.

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MickH is gonna tell you...

Posted July 11, 2010
half way through, but i love the in jokes, Pirates and ninjas etc and Hey! Queen of the Seven Seas!! lol I wonder where you got that!

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Murphy mutters...

Posted July 11, 2010
Orin, Windup is precisely the kind of book I am not going to waste my time reading. Besides, I've read that author's stories. He's just another Kim Stanley Robinson with his own bible to thump.

There is the insertable rant, if half hearted. Winning a Nebula hardly recommends it.

Anyway, the B-52 is, frankly, a more reliable aircraft with a greater bomb carrying capacity. I'm sure if I dug around that I might find some B-1s that were outside of the Wave area on 14 March but my gut tells me most of them were sitting on the tarmac or off on training missions. I suspect the same might be said for B-2s which were not at Diego Garcia or elsewhere.

I'm not sure how After America ends (I usually do not know how these novels end until I get a copy). I think I'm slated to get one but I have not seen it yet.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Orin asserts...

Posted July 11, 2010
Windup Girl's author is more deft than Kim Stanley Robinson - though if I had one criticism it is that his view of our future is so unrelentingly cynical that it can be a bit much to take. What I admire about his work is his ability to use flawed characters effectively - a lot like the writers of BattleStar Galactica did for a while. One moment they sicken you, the next you can relate to them. It is a skill that few authors have, with most characters being black and white, good or bad. Author's world building is also very good - a very reasonable interpretation of civilization muddling through post peak-oil. Of course I have a soft spot for third world futuristic novels - the new one about 21st century Istanbul by McDonald is on my shelf next after I finish Fuller Memorandum.

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted July 11, 2010
The cynical view that we are screwed has always been that writer's problem, Orin. It doesn't help that even as pessimistic as I am about human nature I do not concur with that writer's projections.

I've not read a Stross project in awhile. He lost me with Glasshouse. I had Al Reynolds House of Suns laying around but I never got to it. That isn't Al's fault per se, teaching history chews up a lot of my reading time these days.

Anyway, I've always found Windup's author to be a tiresome writer. I stopped wasting my time on him years ago. But if Besso is looking for some politically correct commentary on post peak oil, I'm sure the Windup guy will provide it.

I think what is next on my list is Matthew Farrer's 40K Omnibus. I saw it at the bookmonger yesterday and as soon I get paid, I'm going to pick up a copy.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted July 11, 2010
Read the wiki summary just now. "American Economic Empire?" Bah, what crap. And it is set in Thailand?

Yeah, Besso will find what he is looking for and that Time magazine listed it only confirms my ponderings on the matter.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted July 11, 2010
You are slated to get one, murph. As is Prof Boylan.

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I_M swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 11, 2010
Anyone knows of any online store that can ship it to USA?

Don't want to wait another 6 weeks or so.

Or maybe someone will be so kind as to mail it to me (I'll order it to be delivered to your address and will pay shipping cost by PayPal upfront). Anyone? Thanks!

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beeso mumbles...

Posted July 11, 2010
With all due respect murph, you know fuck all about my beliefs, politics or reading choices, so perhaps you could stick to commenting on the subject in hand instead of throwaway comments about what I would like in a book.

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Moko reckons...

Posted July 11, 2010
MickH, I saw the Queen of The Seven Seas in there. Thought, 'YES'. lol.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan reckons...

Posted July 11, 2010
I was about to opine on Beeso's beliefs (eclectic) politics (left of center) reading choices (cook books) and what he would look like in a book (short and shifty) but then I logged on and read Beeso's blistering rebuke (see above). I now feel it would be prudent to reconsider.

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beeso ducks in to say...

Posted July 11, 2010
Thanks for making me laugh Paul.

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NBlob asserts...

Posted July 11, 2010
SPOILY SPOILY SPOILERISERS Hot and Salty. If you keep reading past this point and haven't read the book yet it's your own freaking fault. Go on shoo! get off the 'puter & pick up the book.

All opinions are entirely my own, are probably not worth a pinch of sh!t and are based on 0.0 expertise, knowledge nor wisdom.

Ok, Here we go.

I've read it cover to cover twice and am now reading arena by arena, IE all of NYC then all of Texas.

I really like the way you gave Yosuf M a credibility, a rationale, a reason for being in the book. The back story may be referred to a touch more frequently than may be entirely necesary, but he is a strong character that rung like a bell on a clear day. He gave Al Banana the resonance that made that part of the story much more enjoyable.

When are you going to snuff that core-flute bitch Caitlin? Probably never given her ah romantic connection. I didn't find her convincing in WW and I now just skip her entirely on rereads of AA.

In contrast, The Kipper is probably the best character you have built. He is not sure, not an expert in everything and is troubled by the consequences of his decisions. It's like 2 different authors wrote these 2 characters. Without taking it too far Caitlin is a Wilbur Smith character The Kipper is by Kurt Vonnegut.

Beeso spoke about a credibility gap that interferes with the enjoyment of a story. How is it that the baddies in texas hoon about in pickups, yet the heroes are on horseback?

As for the Greens, well yes the Kipper does give them a bit of stick, but I didn't find that out of context or inappropriate given his priorities and personality. They form a bloc in the new government that must be managed to get his agenda through. I didn't pick up on an anti-green tone in the book, I think a suspiscion of the green movement is a meme of our times, like the resistance to wahabi-ist Islam, or a distrust of Multinational coprporations - as such JB refers to all of them.

What I found very interesting was my (entirely unreasonable) dissapointment with Miguels motivation. From the pre-release leaks I had a preconception of his conflict with the Texas authorities, not him running scared from the perpetrators of, well you know what. It's not to say that it isn't a reasonable and appropriate storyline, just not what I expected and that left me a little bummed.

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted July 11, 2010
Thanks, Birmo. I thought I was but I had a brain cramp. Not the first time to be certain.

Beeso's a little touchy, aren't we? As it stands, most of my comments were directed at the Windup Girl writer, not you.

Let me ask you this, Besso.

Why do you think After America is an anti-green book? Let's start there.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Murphy asserts...

Posted July 11, 2010
Trucks implies logistical support, NBob. Horses, on the other hand, would be more practical to someone who does not have a logistics train that stretches back to someplace like Fort Hood.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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NBlob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 11, 2010
I understand that as a pointer to the deniable back channel support the villains are recieving from Fort Hood.

But In my head you can't have it both ways. Either Infernal combustion engines are working or they are not.

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Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted July 11, 2010
Headscratch.

Why wouldn't they be working? Unless I'm missing something.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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beeso puts forth...

Posted July 11, 2010
Read my comments murph, then I'll discuss it. I'm touchy when someone I don't know essentially tries to steroetype mr for no good reason.

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Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted July 11, 2010
Besso, is it twitter or twunter? Turns out that I've not heard of twunter (slang?) and I have pretty much given up on twitter.

And again, a bit touchy, I'd say. That said, I'll offer a bit of a advice.

I get stereotyped pretty regularly, on the net as well as IRL. It is easily understood as I seem, on the surface, to present the image of a right wing nut. Pretty irritating.

And also probably worth getting over.

You could put the comments here where the rest of us could read them. I think that is why Birmo started the thread.

But do what you want. I'm going to bed.

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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beeso mutters...

Posted July 11, 2010
I'll say it again. In the start of this thread are three comments about why I think AA is anti green. If you had read this whole thread you wouldn't be asking mr to explain. I don't know you murph, or your politics or beliefs, so I'm not going to say that you're a lefty that reads books about sparkly vampires. Not until I know you better anyway.

If you couldn't be bothered scrolling up, it was the use of GM crops post wave that I found strange and 'anti environment' coupled with a reasonable viewpoint from certain characters that the greenies were all impractical nutjobs

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beeso puts forth...

Posted July 11, 2010
Sorry

Should have signed off

Beeso

Off to shovel cowshit.

Lantanaland.

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Moko is gonna tell you...

Posted July 11, 2010
Milosz was my favourite character in the book. Fucken had me laughing. Known a coupla blokes that Milosz seems to fit the personality of both combined. They kinda don't mean to be blatant in their racist terminology but they just 'know' they can kick anyone's arse and their terminology of various races is more indicative of the warring version of these people versus the peaceful side side of them.

One bloke was called Armen and he was my security supervisor at one company. Straight out of Bosnia. Nuff said. The other bloke was a weapons trainer I had in security. Ex French infantry - not sure about the legion - but he spent time in Africa which kinda makes me think he was. He finished up in the Au military police.He didn't have anything nice to say about the men of any race he fought.

Anyway, Milosz's character rang with me.

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Brian asserts...

Posted July 11, 2010
Reading back over the comments and thinking about the book . . .just as a book.

One disconnect was the London Echelon office with the female Q . . it was a caricature and jarring. Then reflecting on a few of the other characterizations I realised just what a complex piece of work the book actually is.

NoBeardBob touched on it by reading just the Texas parts then the NYC parts . . .there's 4 seperate, possibly stand alone stories going on. You get that sorta disjunctive effect when a few authors are working the same story arc from different viewpoints. For a single author? That's hard yards.

I quite liked seeing NYC getting trashed. Sorta traditonal. Probably the only reason I keep watching Godzilla.

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NBlob mutters...

Posted July 11, 2010
Brian,

NoBeardBob is a clever ploy used by my aged nemesis to discredit me. Any & all comment credited as such should be taken with a large dozer load of salt.

Speaking of Him. A little part of me died inside when he turned up as a Texan villain.

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Brian ducks in to say...

Posted July 11, 2010
Ahhh NWB . . (shakes head) . . .typecasting can be a bitch.

:)))

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NBlob has opinions thus...

Posted July 11, 2010
"Why wouldn’t they be working?"

We beat this to death 18 months ago or so. Petroleum / gasoline will degrade over time.

The story takes place in the ultimate cornucopia of salvage where anything with a capital ANY is just laying around waiting to be picked up and used. So if the villains can fire up a faded blue F150, why can't Miguel?

Without explanation the villains using motorised transport and Miguel on horseback could be interpreted as a fetish on JB's behalf.

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Havock would have you know...

Posted July 11, 2010
OR NBOB, it could be that ONLY the so called controlling SECURITY forces are allowed too, or that they dont want to draw attention to themselves.

I see plenty of reasons that TEXAS etc are screaming around, with little concern for the greater..bigger picture, where as the STATES as controlled by Kipper are dealing with the REALITY of the financial situation.

Wasnt the made munter in control of texas etc, selling gear off, giving rights and prolly more so than that, Aiding and abetting the pirates and every other thoird world fkn nut job as well, good cash flow but REAL FKN SHORT TERM, and THAT gets a mention in the book as well.

I think its been rather well thought out and thats not trying to blow sunshine up the furry rump of the author.

The ONLY bit of the book that was fkd up, was the B52 and I'm gunna blame MURPH for that till the day i fkn DIE!!!!!!! YA BASTARD!

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Havock puts forth...

Posted July 11, 2010
whats a real cracker and i'm reading between the lines is a small section where its mentioned that WE ARE TALKING TO THE AUSSIES's, Ill speculate that given the vast expanse of texas etc, that we will see skips in armour with US armour and a BIG ARSE FKN CLASH DOWN STH in the next book.....yeah. FKN BRING IT ON BABY!.

JB's been very sketchy on just what the aussies have done, what they have accumulated, what kinda deals were done...and that i reckon speaks fkn volumes for the THIRD BIBLICAL FKN INSTALMENT!

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John Birmingham swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 11, 2010
Bob, Miguel rides a horse because he has to. There is no choice for him. Only the major state roads have been cleared, or neigborhood byways like those in his valley. He has to escape with Sofia and if he hops into a truck, and yes he'd have one even if I didnt mention it, it'd be, oh, all of fifteen minutes before he was picked up by road agents or TDF. I suppose I could have included a line of dialogue to that effect, but I really didnt think it necessary. The fact that the agents do have vehicles should tell us something about their connections.

Brian, gerty is Q, but I don't see her as a caricature any more than Milosz is a caricature. Or Q, for that matter.

As for Caitlin. Most. Divisive. Character. Since. Julia Duffy.

I'll allow Miss Jennicki to defend her. Or would, if she'd read the book. Caitlin is one of my faves, but I recognize that not everyone loves her. The thing to bear in mind about her is that she has chosen to kill in cold blood and has been doing so for years. She's not Kipper and she's never going to be haunted by the sort of fear and doubt that plagues him. She could not be what she is if she questioned herself. That's why the 'meeting' between them was such an enjoyable scene to write.

As for GM crops, the, uh, topic at hand, you'll notice in the text they're a mandated program. You use them or lose govt support. Is it plausible to suggest that governments wouldn't institute a few ill advised, poorly thought out programs after the Wave? The crops don't have to work or be ecologically feasible. They just have to be politically feasible. In a starving post wave world, surviving agribusiness would have a lot of clout.

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Havock is gonna tell you...

Posted July 11, 2010
Lets not forget the YIELDS that GM ( in the book) produce, its mentioned they are hardier, faster etc and I'll wager the bags per hectare are better as well.

Like JB mentions, Agri, wouldn't give a shit, its the SALE they are after and I'll also wager, countries like Aus, will be the culprits as well.

As for Caitilin, SHE fkn rocks. Its given us a vision of the UK, shows that scores always want to be settled and intertwines her in the whole ensemble IMHO.

As for her morals..well that now been mention above, she chose her path, then chose out of sorts and had the past brought back in such a way as to warrant her returning. Its quite plausible, if there was no attempt on her family, then the catalyst for her return would be something else..i'll wager much LESS plausible.

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Havock ducks in to say...

Posted July 11, 2010
And to be brutally fkn honest, I found following her, more enjoyable than Miguel, maybe thats because Cat was a cary over, shes spanky and wenches and a fkn killer as well, who knows really, short version is I would JUMP her faster than Miguel..THATS FOR FKN CERTAIN!

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mckinneytexas puts forth...

Posted July 12, 2010
Cannot wait to read and comment.

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Murphy swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 12, 2010
Havock, I'll gladly take the blame for the B-52s. :) They are a perfectly serviceable bomber with a high capacity. To me it seemed that they were the best choice.

I'm assuming the planned carpet bombing of NYC transpired. I really didn't think B-2s or B-1s would be as suitable for the job. And I liked suggestion a Nam era type Arc Light mission to Birmo.

Besso, I found and read your comments up thread. On retrospect, I owe you an apology for not reading them. I had a long day yesterday and that is my excuse, for that it is worth.

In any case, my sincere apologies.

Per the trucks, I simply assumed that even if gas degraded that oil itself does not. There are still significant stocks of oil in Texas which can be exploited, especially given the reduced population. I suspect the gas came from a restarted refinery. It doesn't have to be a big facility but enough to provide for the vehicles in question.

That said, I suspect gas or any other fuel is difficult to get a hold of.

Finally, I don't see this as an anti-green book myself. It seems to me that the Wave will, just by sheer necessity, force a lot of sustainable technology forward. Furthermore, it will take decades to fully reoccupy the US (if it even remains the original 50 state region plus territories). Much of the infrastructure in terms of housing and what not is going to become unuseable. So I suspect new homes will be on the list of things which need to be built.

If I were in the Green Party, I'd be pushing for a sort of Greenville, Kansas on steroids approach to resettlement.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Murphy swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 12, 2010
Of the story lines, I think the Miguel POV was the most challenging. Caitlin seemed far more interesting to me this time around. I suspect the reason for that is because she is protecting her new family.

I also like the fact that it is the former Ranger that ends up looking like he was put through a meat grinder. That would not be the usual choice in books set in this genre. It is also something that the usual suspects in the PC Nazi movement will probably miss because they'll most likely not pick up the book.

Milosz is great fun to follow around. I really like his odd sense of humor which is warped by his struggles with American English.

That said, I think the book's best moments take place outside of the firefights. Miguel's issues with Sophia, Caitlin comforting Melton after the roadside encounter that nearly cost their newborn her life, and the agony Kipper obviously goes through when he learns of lives lost on his orders.

It would be easy to drift off into cliche with these moments but I think Birmo handles them pretty well.

My thoughts, based on what I currently know. :)

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Fonzic mumbles...

Posted July 12, 2010
Windup Girl is Bacagalupi's first book - how can you find someone to be a tiresome writer when you admit you haven't read their first book?

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Brian has opinions thus...

Posted July 12, 2010
The scribe knows his craft.

I quite like Kipper because I can identify with the background. Sad to say, engineers aren't politicians. They spend a lot of time trying to work out why people don't do the sensible thing. Having said that . . .a lot of fighting generals have started out as engineers in America.

The Q thing? No one else twitched on it . . .so I'll put it down as just me.

The B52's? Not sure but were'nt some placed down in Turkey for GW2? Think there were some in the Pacific at one time. Real uncertain about that. The other thing is that there are probably more aircrews kicking around with B52 experience. All in all . . .I can follow the logic . . .not a deal breaker.

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Bangar reckons...

Posted July 12, 2010
Writers don't just wrie books.

* "Pocketful of Dharma" (1999)

* "The Fluted Girl" (2003)

* "The People of Sand and Slag" (2004)

* "The Pasho" (2004)

* "The Calorie Man" (2005)

* "The Tamarisk Hunter" (2006)

* "Pop Squad" (2006)

* "Yellow Card Man" (2006)

* "Softer" (2007)

* "Small Offerings" (2007)

* "Pump Six" (2008)

* "The Gambler" (2008)

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Murphy ducks in to say...

Posted July 12, 2010
Short stories, sir. I've read his short stories. The People of Sand and Slag was probably his best but to be honest, he seems to write only on one theme. Sand and Slag isn't much different from the plot in the novel summary at wiki.

Brian, Diego Garcia and Guam are probable basing positions for the B-52. I suspect if I did some digging we'd find that B-2s were at both locations as well. That said, a significant number of bombers are probably still on the tarmacs stateside, slowly rotting away.

Besso, why not tell us what you'd do if you were suggesting crops for use in repopulating the U.S.?

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted July 12, 2010
Speaking of Windup, I wonder if he is getting his royalty statements on time? Night Shade Books has been cheerfully screwing their writers for nearly three years now. They supposedly recanted this week and said they'd make things right but I wouldn't hold my breath.

Scalzi made the right call putting the publisher on probation.

Hell, I seem hellbent on a treadjack.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Brian mumbles...

Posted July 12, 2010
Murphy re B52's

That's why I wasn't too concerned about them as operational aircraft. Apart from which a number would be mothballed for parts down in the Boneyard. Operational and maintenance crews would be current and given a number of aircraft based outside the States at the time of the Wave . . .its a no brainer.

There . . .put the thread back.

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beeso is gonna tell you...

Posted July 12, 2010
Well, not GM crops for a start. GM crops are often engineered to have no or little viable seed, so you have to keep buying seed from the company. This is pitched as ensuring that the seed is always good seed true to the GM spec, but it also means you need two lots of plants, one for seed and one for growing the crop, and you have to be able to distribute that seed out.

Open pollinated seeds though, run truer to type, are more adaptable and you can save over some of your crop for next years crop. Every generation of seed will be more suited to the local conditions and as farming seems to be a lot more localised than before due to a shrinking transportation network, this would again become more useful.

Thats not even starting with how bees despise GM crops and side issues like that.

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Moko has opinions thus...

Posted July 12, 2010
I'm no expert by a long shot but I don't think 'terminator' gene is the rule in GM crops but I think hybrid seeds fail but there is a transgene which allows seed generation with GM crops.

Not saying it's the way to go, but it does make it a viable option within a theoretical scenario in a book.

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Brian swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 12, 2010
I'll defer to beeso on the GM crop issue.

But ISTR there's a problem with most modern crops. . . never heard of it before but you have to go trough 2 growing stages to get a food crop. There's a reason you have to buy from seed merchants to get a crop. John Ringo alluded to it in his book 'Last Centurion" . . .it seemed to make sense. I have no idea how widespread that particular problem is. ANy gardening I've done, always used seeds from the last vegie patch.

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted July 12, 2010
I feel I should backpedal a bit.

I have, am and will continue to enjoy After America. Exactly the same as I do the WOC trilogy and Without Warning. I'm not one who can afford to buy a new book every week, so I have a stable of well thumbed favourites that I read and re-read. If that leads me to be a little trainspotter about them, well that's just the way it is.

JB threw open this wing of the Gothic for us to discuss After America. As he said everyione reads a different book.

So if Havock makes a tent in the doona whenever Caitlin is dispatching villains, Beeso got a hint of anti-green on the back of his palate and I wallowed in The Kippers angst I think that says a great deal about the quality of the writing. You just aint going to get that kind of nuance in a Tom Clancy.

So my concerns about the Technical divide between Miguel and the Road Agents did not stop me enjoying the book. Far from it. It was just a basis for rumination and the equivilant of kicking a can down the street in the echoing back corridors of this thing between my ears.

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Brian ducks in to say...

Posted July 12, 2010
NWB

Yah. I think we all enjoyed the book. We also enjoy the post mortems on the book.

And I agree about the nuances. See, you might not like scene A or character D but the writing still carries you past that point.

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Therbs puts forth...

Posted July 12, 2010
The benefits of having a cold, or "manflu" over the past few days is that I had every excuse to lie up and read and thus finished AA on Sunday. My initial reaction is surprise that Miguel gets cornholed twice, once by redneck nazis and the second by a flash flood. Poor bloke can't take a trick but I hope something good happens in the third book. I did like the unravelling of his motivations and the same goes for Kipper. That conflict of the builder ordering destruction is a nice juxtaposition of personal values against the exigencies of multiple threats to the common good and I thought the author did a fine job with that. Caitlin is one cool "crazy ninja bitch with a boilersuit fetish". With her motivations moved from that of the hired assassin to that of a mother protecting her family she brings the day-to-day aches of being a mother to the nasty dark side of her job. It was good to see her frustration in not being able to finish off her nemesis shining strong in the liftoff chopper. There's some more nastiness lying in wait between those two. Is Brett for the chop?

Milosz is definitely a star - the "2nd ammendment trumps 1st ammendment" taunt after capping a "pirate arseclown" was classic.

Fave characters - Miguel and Kipper for the explorations of motives, Caitlin for switch of motives and Freddy Milosz for his comedy relief. The scattering of burgers throughout the book gives it a village feel for us and that is a good thing.

The greenie debate? I see the greens will lose popularity and votes as the emotions of post-wave blame dissipate and the reality of reconstruction begins. The official use of GM crops was most likely a panic reaction to the real threat of starvation, governments desparately accepting a magic silver bullet sold by honey-tongued agribusiness moguls. The cars in Texas? Well, they're supplied by Blackstone, funded by his pillage of the southern states. Remember he had access to military engineers and would be able to fire up a refinery. And using the fuel so that his red neck minions could carry out some ethnic cleansing sounds about right.

Overall comment - the dialogue is great, character development is well handled, particularly with Miguel. I like the wit, e.g. where Caitlin recalls some Shakespeare in context but shrugs it off by saying she could simply shut the fuck up, and Freddy referencing Dante's Inferno and The Towering Inferno in the same line.

I also like the separate story arcs, a couple of which seem to be inevitably coming together. Will we see the main characters in the same room? I can imagine Miguel and Sophia reuniting with Jules and Rhino either in KC or Seattle and meeting up with Kipper and Caitlin to share intelligence on the two main bad guys.

Can't wait to find out.

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Therbs would have you know...

Posted July 12, 2010
NWBob, I've read it once and did a quick skim of the first book beforehand to get me in phase. Usually with airport thrillers I get through them quickly but with this one, it takes a bit more particularly where Miguel's and Kipper's story arcs meet some darkness. I liked the "road" story of Miguel going through both the physical landscape and his spiritual and emotional struggles when faced with the losses casued by both man-made and natural tragedies. A flood is always great symbolism and contextually ripe for Miguel's situation.

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Chaz is gonna tell you...

Posted July 12, 2010
I seem to remember rumors of B2's & b1's being in DG prior to the kick off of Iraq part deux. Also B1's get alot of useage in the 'stan.

But for sheer grunt work B-52s can be beat. Hence the reason they'll be in use for many years to come after the b1's go to the bone yard.

H's you don't get a b1 as you'd probably break it!

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Orin mutters...

Posted July 12, 2010
Can you imagine the nosecone art on Havock's B52? Angry baby in a helmet with the phrase FKN MUPPETS coming out of its mouth.

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Therbs ducks in to say...

Posted July 12, 2010
Orin - gold. Then a certain pachyderm type would overpaint a picture of a rhino kissing its bicep with the famour quote as a caption.

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Havock reckons...

Posted July 12, 2010
Therbs I shall ignore your momentary brain laspe OK!..just this once, Only time a rhino would be on the buff, assuming i can get it off the ground with the bastard on baord would be for me to drop the big git from 40K feet.

As for breaking shit..NO WAY, Lt Colonel, lotsa flight time, king of the wing and prolly qualified in just about everything, its a sign of this characters emergence that Kipper has him flying this mission, I can see later episodes where perhaps the big bird gets into trouble, maybe even crashed, Havock bails out, rescues his crew, caps a few muppets and continues on with the mission, later stages hijacking maybe an F15E and going after the made muppet in Texas, sinking and killing like never before, twisting turning and dog fighting the un tamed hordes trying to attack the US of A, first bloke in the POST wave era to become a Multiple ACE, downing Migs like no tomorrow, making Bader look like a pussie and Cunningham a big fkn girl.

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted July 12, 2010
Good Dog.

JB's created a monster.

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donna puts forth...

Posted July 12, 2010
its so hard to resist this thread....bloody spoilers. I'm only just shy of half way through, real life has taken over my reading time. I'm loving the rhino!!

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Murphy asserts...

Posted July 13, 2010
The most likely story on Havock's character is that he was the senior available officer who was most likely grounded for pulling some really crazy stunt and thus survived getting killed in the Sandbox or zapped by the Wave.

Might have something to do with crossdressing though.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Brian asserts...

Posted July 13, 2010
Strange when you think about it. Havocks only a minor character in the book while Rhino really does all the heavy lifting.

Not barracking . . .no . . .not me.

While reading the bombing passage, I had a flashback to Dr Strangelove . . .the scene where the pilot is trying to release the H-bomb. Y'know? The one where he ends up riding it all the way down yelling "YeeHah!"

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Guru Bob reckons...

Posted July 13, 2010
Actually my reading of Havock's character was that he was some Walter Mitty style desk jockey who at the time of the wave suddenly found himself in a position where he can do some real damage due to disruptions in the chain of command...

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joe reckons...

Posted July 13, 2010
Well.... Mr Birmingham.....

Thank you for a very entertaining, if unproductive housework-wise, weekend lost between the pages of your latest offering.

I'm sure I will have plenty of comments for you as the thoughts occur, these are just for starters:

Amazing to consider (20/20 hindsight) how much of AA I feel I have already read in draft form, simply by the occasional browse of this Cheeseburger Gothic Blog..... Sausages, fitness struggles, restaurant critiques and of course the action-novel Gun-Porn.....

There were many fantastic scenes, and enjoyable characters, but my favourite characters would have to be Milosz, Miguel and Kipper, in that order.

Some of the others... maybe not enough time/pages to make them thicker than cardboard cutouts, but fun regardless.

Cowboys!

Burger Cameos!!

Viking-Helmeted Gun-toting Privateers!!!

I almost woke the neighbours when I read about the possibility of Neutron-Bomb Walking Dead!!!! Lost opportunity, that.... :-(

B52's would be the bomb-truck of choice IMHO - nothing with radar would survive all those Apaches and A-10s on overwatch, so the carrying capacity and range is all that would be essential.

About that Greens thingie.....

I wouldn't say it was "Anti"-Greens... but Post-Wave Green-politics in AA seemed a concept that got invited to the Ball but didnt have any friends to dance with..... aside from some amusing observations of the likely farming ability of softskinned ex-Seattle-hippies when they actually get onto a plot of land.... surely the Environmentally Inclined would have a HEAP of remedial work to be doing - you know, the odd corroded/exploded chemical plant/waste storage facility/nuclear power stations...... I know a lot of that stuff just "burnt out" during the postwave pollution storms.... but there doesn't seem to be much reference at all to the likely urgent work that would have had to have been going on, only on character's opinions of the uselessness of those holding Greenie tendencies. The opinions seemed in-character for those holding them, but there wasn't much narrative about the actual challenges involved or those trying to meet those challenges.

I guess there was only enough pages for the storytelling essentials. Oh, and Gun-Porn. Wait, that's essential...

Economy? I would imagine a country with similar land-area to Australia, similar population after the Wave, would be getting a lot of it's wealth from minerals - the mines would still be around, you would just need the labour and skillsets to reopen - there is a place the Antipodeans could genuinely help out. Problem of course would be who to sell it to: the Chinese (didn't hear much from them this book... or the Indonesians, apart from one bit-part Jihadist) would need to sell their manufacturing product to someone, and there's a glut of salvaged American stuff hitting the blackmarket at rockbottom prices...

Against that, the world's Financial Capital (essentially the money businesses run with while trying to make more) was still about 50% American money back in 2003.... even after the ownership/inheritance struggle lost half of that to pay the lawyers in another 58 countries, not much explanation is given to exactly how America is so wretchedly poor, considering so much of the wealth was stored/generated by offshore operations... Must say though, I loved the "Newbies" slang name for the replacement currency.

Also missing from this episode in the series:

The Governor of Texas........

I am expecting to hear a fair bit more from him in the next installment.

His Goons certainly make for good Badguys, maybe we could get an inside-head view from some of them like we did with the Islamist African Child-Soldier?

A little surprised thermobarics weren't Kipper's first choice... and even more surprised he didn't delay things a little to give "crazy ninja bitch" a longer chance to whack the leadership - but I guess they gotta have a chance to make it alive to the next book eh?

so many questions..... now just dont get ur larynx busted down at the dojo along with your typing hand, this demanding reader finds it hard to wait!

but seriously, thanks again for a fun read.

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Rhino reckons...

Posted July 13, 2010
Joe Said, "Viking-Helmeted Gun-toting Privateers!!!"

Yeah, he's my fave too. As soon as I get my copy which is on its way.

PNB, Murph, Jen and I are going to have our own US book club. Yeah, I said it.

R.

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Therbs puts forth...

Posted July 13, 2010
Joe, that's a good idea about the Badguy POV down in Texas. I reckon the Green question will feature a bit more in the third book. I love the concept of Seattle hippies trying to decontaminate a nuke power station.

Rhino, good luck with the book club. No doubt we'll be making suggestions along the way. First up, may I suggest After America? Its a great read.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 13, 2010
Oh, you suggest After America? You say it's a great read? Fuck you, Therbs, for adding insult to injury. I am in Bozeman, Montana, with nothing to read.

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Brian mutters...

Posted July 13, 2010
Oh hell, Paul . . .none of us knew, none of us . .

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted July 13, 2010
No Paul, just taunting. You haven't missed a thing by not reading it. May I suggest something a bit lighter, say hooking up the Xbox and playing Dante's Inferno, with particular reference to limbo? I'm sure Alighieri would approve.

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Havock puts forth...

Posted July 13, 2010
PNB....Or you could simply venture on down to the supermarket and BUY a BOX of Tissues, hell, if that don't work, I would suggest looking for CSR readymix or their equiv over their and purchasing a cup of concrete, merely to harden the fkn up ouf course.

On the other hand.....Ahhh..no, I wouldnt do that too ya....lo..LMFAO!..I LOVE THIS SHIT!

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beeso is gonna tell you...

Posted July 13, 2010
Not all greenie hippies are useless.

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Havock reckons...

Posted July 13, 2010
Beeso is RIGHT I will have you all know.

They are combustible ..

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Murphy is gonna tell you...

Posted July 14, 2010
I'm sure some greenie hippies taste pretty good once they are seasoned with barbecue sauce. :)

Yes, Rhino. Our own book club. Definitely.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Dante Alighieri mumbles...

Posted July 14, 2010
I do not approve of that fucking game. The graphics are disappointing.

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Brian reckons...

Posted July 14, 2010
Havock

And compostable.

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Therbs asserts...

Posted July 14, 2010
Dante, so sue someone. Mr Boylan could help out there. Oh yeah, belated thanks for inventing words like pizza and spaghetti. Now take a dive buddy, like the rest of your soccer team, or go write a poem or something.

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Nocturnalist puts forth...

Posted July 14, 2010
+++I think what is next on my list is Matthew Farrer’s 40K Omnibus.+++

Standing by to be chastened on how I mishandled the firefights :)

In the meantime, Canberra burgers, I'm signing at Mind Games in Civic on Friday night from six to eight, and at Games Workshop Woden on Saturday morning from ten to noon. Stop by and say hi if you're passing.

I'll try and think of something on-topic to say post-coffee.

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted July 14, 2010
Matthew, I think it has been awhile since I hammered anyone over firefights. Besides, things are a little different now. There are more people with much more experience at firefights than yours truly. Wasn't quite the case five years ago.

Anyway, yours is slated for August reading before the Fall Semester. I'll need some good old fiction to wash a bit of history out of my brain before I dive back into it again.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Therbs would have you know...

Posted July 14, 2010
Matthew, the Galaxy signings look like a go.

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Moko asserts...

Posted July 15, 2010
I love that we got the book before the Seppo contingent.

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Brian mumbles...

Posted July 15, 2010
Moko

Yes indeedy.

Time for another spoil . . .err . . I mean, discussion thread I think.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mutters...

Posted July 16, 2010
Moko - I am pleased you spelled Seppo with a capital "S." It shows respect.

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sparty would have you know...

Posted July 16, 2010
Wave just hit UK....

Loved the young rag head story arc.

Caitlin has grown on me.

Laughed alot at Prime Minister Howard- he of something of the night.

And love the Lonesome dove feel to the western bits.

BUT,still think there is room for a feisty east european gang leader who takes his name from a bunch of revolutionaries who themselves take their name from someone who kicked some serious Roman arse....just sayin....

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Sadim is gonna tell you...

Posted July 16, 2010
Re: a percieved 'anti-green' feel to the book ... my take is that there are two word-views expressed by characters in the book.

Kipper, and his supporters (and I include Miguel in this group) say "Shit has happened - how do we make it better from here..."

On the other hand, the Islamists, the Greens, the loony-left of the Democrats, the'god-botherer' Republican rump, and of course Blackstone, are looking back saying "We want to return to the 'better time / better world' - even if that time or world never really existed.

Then of course, there are characters like Caitlin - who live only in the here-and-now.

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NataliatheRussianSpy puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2010
I don't understand why you think Caitlin is so 'Wilbur Smith' in conception Bob. I gather you mean she is plain old stock character? Tell the Spy more. Cos I'm in the love her to bits camp. Her turn of phrase, her unquestionable competence, the fierce lioness in her - take your pick. I nearly woke the neighbours with all the whooping early this morning when I got to the part where she gives Kipper a bit of lip...operating with leaky tits and a recently dug out brain tumour? The woman is a machine :-D You reckon that's too much to swallow? Too good to be true Bob?

John - the bit where Caitlin is riding in the car with Dalby and describes Albinoni's Adagio as 'music to eat your pistol by' made me laugh! I'm fond of saying certain radio stations in Brisbane play 'music to slash your wrists to' so I got a giggle out of your variation :-D

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NataliatheRussianSpy puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2010
I kept thinking how a Dr Strangelove underground project for future repopulation might pop up! Wouldn't that be a hoot? The new enemy...the master race emerging from the depths...oh don't mind me.

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Murphy reckons...

Posted July 18, 2010
SpyNat, there has been more than one discussion about how deep the Wave actually went. Perhaps there is some super secret facility somewhere deep in the rock where a bunch of nutters worship a man in a wheelchair who can't quite control one of his arms.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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John Birmingham reckons...

Posted July 18, 2010
Nat, we will do a Women of Wave thread in a week or so, when the US burgers have their copies.

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Murphy would have you know...

Posted July 18, 2010
Nat, I'm sure they have properly looked after their bodily essences and protected them from the dangers of flouridation.

I've always been a bit surprised (insert SNARK tone here) that the PC Nazis of the American Science Fiction Community haven't picked up on the very strong characterizations of non-stereotypical women in the Without Warning Trilogy.

Shakes head.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Paul Nicholas Boylan puts forth...

Posted July 18, 2010
A week? Another week? I will be in Ireland/UK again in a week and will be able to purchase my own copy before then.

Not that I am complaining....

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John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted July 18, 2010
Professor Boylan, your copy is probably waiting at home for you right now. But yes, you should be able to score at least an electronic version in the UK by the end of the month.

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted July 19, 2010
Seriously, John, I'm not complaining. I am happy to get one when I get one. Any disgruntlement on my part engenders from my unhappiness every time Moko or Yobbo know something I don't. It prompts them to entertain an illusory sense of superiority.

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BoomerMMW asserts...

Posted July 19, 2010
A gripping read, just finished the book this morning in the little library, (the only reading sanctuary from inane nagging in the house). Yeah, poor Miguel got the shitty end of the stick, rather sad, go back 200 years, read Appaches for road agents and you get the gist of the wild west. Birmo I dont know how far you have written into the next but as one of the correspondents on this blog mentioned about how the greens policies changed with more influence in European government perhaps you could touch on a similar effect of how Islam could be affected by coming into control of large educated western economies and how they would have to change to effictively manage them, a touch of irony perhaps?. Damm fine read, loved every word keep up the excellent work. Ps: like to know if Admiral Kolhammer is going to reappear in the near future?

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BoomerMMW puts forth...

Posted July 19, 2010
Hi Havock

Good point, however the B1's power supply stopped rendering their onboard tech useless after two years even with battery backup, the Buffs however even with old tinn Lizzie tech of the 20th century were still available to be fired up after being properly serviced. Hated to see the Big Apple wasted by them though, love the place, second home for myself and significant other esspecially Mid Town, still! dramatic licence,

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sparty would have you know...

Posted July 19, 2010
sadly once again Kohlhammer was probobly out of the country, while his misses got waved....

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Havock mumbles...

Posted July 19, 2010
Boomer..good call. I think then I might have to be loaded out with TASM's and Harpoons, some hunting over water and then cluster munitions across TEXAS

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Posted July 23, 2010
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Respond to 'First Discussion thread for After America.'

Quick tour wrap.

Posted July 8, 2010 by John Birmingham
I gotta a coupla minutes before I have to head out to the airport for Melbourne so thought I might drop a note here to say thanks to everyone who's turned out this week. There's been some memorable moments, some of which I wont detail to spare t dignity of the slurring drunks involved.

The weeks efforts are going well with Pan Macmillan very pleased by sales that exploded from the get go, and media coverage which has seen AA as the most talked about book the last week.

That's all good, but for me the best part is atching up with everyone. It's been a bit weird at times seeing the various streams cross over, with burgers and tweetenvolk meeting for the first time, but it's also been massive fun. Last night in Canberra was the awesome, thank to the local crew who kicked on afterwards at dinner and drinks. Tuesday in Sydney was pobably even more ruinous. (How's the heads, therbs and bondi?).

Just about to pack and run to the airport for Melb. Will see some of the crew tonite at Dymocks and beyond, and the rest on Friday.

24 Responses to ‘Quick tour wrap.’

Abigail puts forth...

Posted July 8, 2010
Ok,I'll be the "lonelyguy" and be first to comment.

JB it was a real pleasure to meet you last night; you're so charming and lovely.

I hope that doesn't sound too 'cake decorating' for you.

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lostatlunch is gonna tell you...

Posted July 8, 2010
Thanks for your time JB. had a great one.

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Abigail would have you know...

Posted July 8, 2010
I should add...it's difficult to go along to have dinner with a room full of strangers because one never knows who will show up and how uncomfortable it can get. Part of me wanted to cancel dinner because I thought, will I be out of place? What if these are trigger happy randoms ( teen talkin') with Travis Bickle haircuts? I wasn't familiar with any Canberra names from this list except for Mr Frellman.

Nothing of the sort. Good, nice friendly people talking about lots of different things; excellent night considering I'd never met most of you ever :) Thanks again for organising it , Abe and to JB.

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Matt L asserts...

Posted July 8, 2010
John, thanks for the amusing stories last night in Canberra. The lines were long so I thought I'd blog this story for you of meeting some people in your books...

Having bought the book "Off One's Tits" the day before going to Don Quixote when I book I advised Manolo the Manager (apparently he wasn't called 'The Don' by patrons) he was in a book in about their suckling pig. He asked for me to bring the book in and I did. He then proceeded to read the chapter to the whole kitchen and cooking stopped for at least 15 minutes. He kept the book, we got a free suckling pig and we didn't need a Whopper chaser.

Keep it up, Matt L

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Surtac swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 8, 2010
JB, let me pass on my thanks also to yourself and to Abe for last night in Canberra. It was thoroughly enjoyable, the library session and the dinner both. It was nice to be re-acquainted with some of the Canberra 'burgers from the last tour, and to meet some more this time around.

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Bondiboy66 asserts...

Posted July 8, 2010
'Slurring drunks'? Oi! I resemble that remark! I was a tad secondhand the next day I must say...more from the lack of sleep to be honest, but the booze didn't help. Twas a good night out though!

I'm only up to chapter 11 in the book thus far, but I'm getting a few giggles from some of the names popping up e.g. Frellman's Sausages in the markets, and the Bedak Whitetail cows! Bursting out laughing whilst reading on the bus does draw a few odd looks from the commuters...well, more than the usual odd looks anyway.

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jp asserts...

Posted July 8, 2010
Yeah, that's all well and good, but what about this?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HIehtCNgvrQ

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aaron puts forth...

Posted July 8, 2010
I am really looking forward to Dumpling Bar tonight but whats happening friday? if there is anything that would be much easier but I am still keen on tonight.

any chance I can bring a plus one (its a bar so i guess thats fine)?

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AgingGamer mumbles...

Posted July 8, 2010
Tuesday night was mind boggling AWSM and I too enjoyed meeting some of the other burgers. Good to finally meet bondi & therbs. I did not however want to be divorced, you know being my wedding anniversary and all, and stumble home rollicking drunk so my apologies for the early exit. (It won't happen again promise)

And damn Sir Birmo you've done exceptional well in the weight loss and fitness stakes! I must say your current 'ripped' state has given me more motivation to kick the last 10kgs in the arse!

I will be devouring a sizeable chunk of After America on the weekend by sending my Xbox away to a health retreat so there are no distractions.

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John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted July 8, 2010
Aaron, bring whoever you want. I believe there is a friday night meet up planned. More on that later.

MattL, I believe that freebie belongs to ME!!!

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Nocturnalist swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 8, 2010
An excellent night was had by all, good food and quality company. Big salutes to the other Canberra burgers, and to JB for being the catalyst for it all.

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Loookeski is gonna tell you...

Posted July 8, 2010
Thanks for the good time JB. Was great again to meet more of your Canberra crew. A lovely bunch of people. I will be tuning in to this blogoverse more regularly in the future. After America has slipped the bouncer a twenty and cut straight to the top of my teetering, house-sized "must read" pile. :)

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Abe ducks in to say...

Posted July 8, 2010
A great night thanks to all and no dramas re organising.

And some Great NEWS!

Simon told me that he'll be hosting a big housewarming bash in the coming weeks to put the Tas Babes party to shame. Socks optional!

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Abigail mutters...

Posted July 8, 2010
Oh that's great news about Mr Bedak's house warming; yes, twil be good of it's a Bedak production.

In fact, Mr Frellman, I was about to post you a message on fb to say I am sorry I never got a chance to sit and have a chat with you last night but it was pretty squishy and I was more or less entombed in my chair. Then I looked and you were gone. Next time.

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girlclumsy mumbles...

Posted July 9, 2010
Bedak's having a housewarming? Cool!

I'm going to be in Canberra on 21, 22 of July, returning 23rd. I'll be at an impro convention most of the time, but would love to catch up with some Canberra burgers if there's a chance. Looking at you, Sausage King of Queanbeyean, and Squire Bedak.

JB, congrats on the tour and book sales - I'm enjoying it as I make my way through AA in between 4am shifts and impro shows. :)

I am also enjoying the Burger cameos - but I'm keeping a running tally on my favourite descriptions of bodies being blown apart during battles. I think my favourite so far is "pink gruel". ;)

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Therbs puts forth...

Posted July 9, 2010
Still suffering but that's down to manflu. Yeah, it was great to see the tweet/burger coalition forming an unrelenting party mass, defeating the forces of vegetarianism in a right royal me blowout at The Weeds, The Balkan and The Beauchamp. Beers, mixed grills, wine and whisky. 'Nuff said.

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Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted July 9, 2010
This has got to be a unique group set up.How many people form a motley but interesting circle around a blogwhich is run by a man called Havsy, oops I mean run by an author you grew up reading and who is completely normal,yet has gold hovercrafts in his gaden; everyone meets up,even fly interstate for meetings? It's like being part of a very wealthy Hollywood party jetset without the extreme wealth or the annoying plastic celebrities.Hollywood-light.

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Brian ducks in to say...

Posted July 9, 2010
Abigaial . . .duno about that. You don't get out to many football matches do you?

As to Havsy . . .Bad news . . .Broadband rollout. Inner North Brisbane and Bachus Marsh . . .plus some others. Looks like a wide throat connection from BrisVegas to Havock Haven.

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Abigail asserts...

Posted July 9, 2010
Brian, " dunno about that...football matches"? sorry, I'm not following.. umm, therefore proving your assumption that I don't do football. :)

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Surtac ducks in to say...

Posted July 9, 2010
Abigail,

It’s not unique. I’m a part of another such community, based around our mutual admiration for another author. Our usual interaction is via a long-standing messageboard, which I help moderate, but there have been multiple occasions where associates have met up in real life to interact with or without the author being present, and more are being planned. In fact, just last month, the third of a sequence of informal mini-conventions was held in the authors home town in the US and about twenty associates from various parts gathered together for fellowship (drinking) and various shared activities. Several of those activities were hosted at the authors own home, by her direct invitation.

Some of my associates from that community are coming out to Oz later this year and I’m planning to meet up with them then, at Worldcon in Melbourne.

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted July 9, 2010
What?? so we've gone from being a unique enterprise to dime-a-dozen floozies in the course of three posts? Life is cheap in cyber space my friend.

No, actually Surtac you have convinced me, without intending it, to get myself a business card drawn up : "Associate of John Birmingham, Awesome Incorporated"

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Surtac has opinions thus...

Posted July 9, 2010
No - definitely not dime-a-dozen floozies. I have it on very good authority that this and my other Association are quite rare beasts indeed. :)

Btw, I do like the idea of such a business card.

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Damaso has opinions thus...

Posted July 10, 2010
Looking forward to reading AA but I wish it wasn't priced at nearly $15 for the Kindle! Any chance of convincing your publisher to lower the price. Otherwise I will just have to wait or worse yet get it from the library, denying you much needed bear monies!

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John Birmingham asserts...

Posted July 10, 2010
Get it from the library Damaso. I still get paid.

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Respond to 'Quick tour wrap.'

Monday in Sydney

Posted July 5, 2010 by John Birmingham
Did the first day of the tour today, a couple of hours worth of interviews, lunch with my publicists and publishers, and some bookstore visits in the afternoon. I'm using the evening to catch up on some column writing before popping out to visit a restaurant mid evening.

I note below that Ariel is listed as kicking off at six, but my latest itinerary and the bokstore's website have a kick off at 7.

Perhaps it's drinks at six. At any rate, it's certainly drinks for us at six, or earlier, if you head to the 3 Weeds.

I'm a bit concerned about the number of people coming along via the magic of twitter and facebook. I dont know how many of them could fit into the Balkan if they wanted to kick on in the same way as Brisbane. Might have to put the publicity mavens on that.

20 Responses to ‘Monday in Sydney’

NBlob would have you know...

Posted July 5, 2010
Sure does blow chunks when you are too popular.

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Trowzers reckons...

Posted July 5, 2010
No plug for the 7.30 report gig on in a few mins? I bet I missed a plug on twitter ;) Darn, I'd better get with the times I guess.

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Nocturnalist mutters...

Posted July 5, 2010
Not a bad publicity angle if you get so many fans showing up that you pack out a bar/restaurant/wherever.

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Trowzers is gonna tell you...

Posted July 5, 2010
Nice product placement :)

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joe mumbles...

Posted July 5, 2010
I agree Trowzers, well done to JB for not only getting tapped by Auntie for a story on the Twitterati and other devilishly addictive social media... but for putting on the "commercial free" public broadcaster a massive new book title right there in Not-So-Subliminal-Space.

Top job sir, Top Job.

Oh yeh an u sounded all intelligent like and knowing yer topic 'an stuff.... I like that!

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Bondiboy66 ducks in to say...

Posted July 5, 2010
Yep first thing I said to Wifey - 'Hah! Look, he even got the new book in the background!

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girlclumsy would have you know...

Posted July 5, 2010
Have to add my compliments on the product placement - that was splendidly done! First thing that caught my eye! ;)

I love stories like that where there's not much vision they can use so it's all shots of computer screens and sounds of clicking keyboards! Awesome.

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Matthew K is gonna tell you...

Posted July 5, 2010
Yeah, what Matt F said.

(No, really that was exactly what I was thinking of saying).

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted July 6, 2010
Spotter report. Just an FYI that Without Warning is out in paperback here in Overland Park, Kansas. I've got to admit that I really like the paperback cover.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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fknvirty mutters...

Posted July 6, 2010
was that young birmin'am i saw last night on oxford st sporting a set of buttless chaps?

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lostatlunch would have you know...

Posted July 6, 2010
Virty, problem bnot the first time,... what happens on Oxford St, stays on Oxford St.. unless Today Tonight see you.

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NBlob puts forth...

Posted July 6, 2010
If he chooses to sport a set of chaps, well dressed, buttless or otherwise, Shirley that's his business?

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Therbs ducks in to say...

Posted July 6, 2010
That's funny about the Balkan - I booked for 6 and there's gonna be a horde.

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lostatlunch has opinions thus...

Posted July 6, 2010
yeah, these enthused about dinner with a horde...

but people talk shite on twitter.. maybe a few extra blow-ins?

I expect all the twitterati would expect JB's publicity mavens to foot the bill.

BTW, nice piece in Fairfax pimping for their star blogger.

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted July 6, 2010
I'll leave booking changes to the publicity crew. Crapped out on the iView 7.30 Report interview down here at the bureau. Grrrr.

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 6, 2010
Gosh that is funny about a horde of "the great unbooked" turning up for dinner, courtesy of the publishers?, lol, at a table for 6.

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Therbs puts forth...

Posted July 7, 2010
Well, it was a fine collection of tweet peeps and burgers. JB was in top form, the Ariel gig was well attended and hats off to the Publishing, Publicity and Ariel staffers. A great effort.

We started off with drinks at The Weeds, more drinks at Ariel and then mixed grills at the Balkan. What else to do after that but saunter up to The Beauchamp for a few post prandial settlers. A fine evening indeed. Great to meet up with the tweesters and Savo, BondiBoy, AgeingGamer and Darkman.

To sum up, my head hearts but I'm not blaming the double Makers Mark nightcap. Must be a man flu or something.

Abe, JB survived the night so its up to you guys now.

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted July 7, 2010
Therbs, by the sound of his progress through Drink Week I suspect we'll be pouring him back on the doorstep of the Hyatt.

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Bondiboy66 is gonna tell you...

Posted July 7, 2010
Yeah I was suffering a bit this morning too Therbs...much better now though! Twas an excellent night out, and great to put faces to names.

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lostatlunch has opinions thus...

Posted July 7, 2010
sorry I piked, But I could not stay awake.

But there was some great company, i intend to catch up with.

I owe Therbs and Bondi a beer... it will be my pleasure to buy anytime.

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Respond to 'Monday in Sydney'

Oz review.

Posted June 14, 2010 by John Birmingham
Orin sent me this link last nite, which I tweeted up, causing a short but fascinating discussion about literary reviewing over at twunter in the burger stream. For the record, I enjoyed the review and even liked it as a piece of criticism. There's points I'd argue with, natch, but that's a good thing. Yoe rarely this level of engagement with genre fiction in the MSM lit pages.

If you read it critically the main issue the reviewer seems to take with After America isn't the quality of the writing or story, but the, uh, politics, and even that was kinda vexed, with acknowledgments of, say, Kipper's trad left mooshiness.

It's a pity the book is still a few weeks away so you could make your own minds up.

61 Responses to ‘Oz review.’

Nocturnalist swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 14, 2010
Loved the masthead - you should buy that piece and use it as a bookplate or something.

I'm struggling slightly to recall anything I'd have described as "trad left mooshiness" from the first book, but as you say I guess I'll have to hang out and wait 'til the second one comes out.

Speaking of which, is there still time to put a hand up for the after-launch dinner in Canberra?

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Brian has opinions thus...

Posted June 14, 2010
That's a surprisingly interesting article from the Murdoch death-star.

He seems to have overlooked the fact that a few luminaries have done 'pulp fiction' . . . Mark Twain for one, Conan Doyle for another. Not bad company when you think on it.

Nor . . .that readership is confined to a limited demographic. Being lumped with teenagers, can at least mean that you have engagement across generational lines.

Jim Baen was always credited for one thing . . .dragging mil-SF back into the gutter where it belonged . . .and being resented for making a nice living out of it.

Not bad though . . .not bad at all.

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John Birmingham asserts...

Posted June 14, 2010
Matt, yep, plenty o'time, plenty o' room at the table.

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Matthew K would have you know...

Posted June 14, 2010
I concur with my namesake re the masthead, very cool. Having only read WW I can't say for sure but i sort of agree with the bloke. I think I said at the time that I found the whole France-falling-to-bits-and-UK-going-semi-fascho a step too far credibility wise. I'm willing to suspend belief for the wave but not the rest.

That said I will buy it and tell people about it as I did for AoT and WW. Does that make me one of your "creepy teenage fanclub", that crack kind of irritates me tell the truth.

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted June 14, 2010
Jb, perhaps I will have to wait to read the book but I can't work out what the reviewer is trying to say--underneath it all, I mean. Just on intuition it comes across as though they are afraid of running into you. It keeps giving with one hand and taking with the other.On one hand you're a great prose writer, but actually...well actually what? I can't get it clear whether they are scornful or not , or how well thought through their criticism is, or is not. For a few reasons I find it an odd review.

For the record I think you're a very strong writer and I never take much notice of critics anyway--unlesss they make very cear what they are getting at, where they are constructive and and where no personal bias is evident.

This one seems personal to me, somehow. Perhaps I am mistaken.

Yes, Matt K, first time I recall a reviewer reviewing the readership--and so harshly; not that I care less but it sounds like his/her personal feeling, doesn't it?

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girlclumsy puts forth...

Posted June 14, 2010
God forbid a writer should think about his/her audience! :)

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Matthew K mumbles...

Posted June 14, 2010
I guess I am a fan, but I'm not a teenager.

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Roberto Teixeira mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
That I was actually flattered to be called a teenager is probably a good sign that I'm getting too old... *sigh*

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Murphy asserts...

Posted June 15, 2010
Anybody bother to tell that guy that American soldiers . . . well, they do talk like that. In fact, the passage was pretty tame compared to what I have heard or has been related to me.

The illustration was first rate though and heaven forbid a writer actually be in the game for . . . something as banal as profit. Sheesh.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Rhino asserts...

Posted June 15, 2010
Notice he didn't say anything about the sections featuring your beloved Rhino. Would've made the entire review superfluous as those sections are shining examples of literary perfection.

And the other stuff is pretty good too. Especially the part where ... oh, sorry, almost let that slip.

R.

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Sturt is gonna tell you...

Posted June 15, 2010
Dunno, I just read it as a variant on the standard form of political-literary discipline: You have sinned against orthodoxy and therefore must be punished with the disdain of your betters. Fiction as entertainment? Not at any price, saith Mr Williamson.

Also - 532 pages! Better book another week at the beach.

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Trashman reckons...

Posted June 15, 2010
It sounds like the usual snobbishness about SF to me. You know, how some authors (not JB)claim they don't write SF, they write 'speculative fiction'. Most critics don't seem to see it as a valid form of literature - I would beg to differ.

Along with Matt K, I think I said at the time that I thought the UK going fascist was a step too far, it just wasn't the country that I live in - especially as it had not been directly attacked in any way.

I also would be flattered to be called a teenager now. I can just about remember back that far!

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Brian asserts...

Posted June 15, 2010
Guys . .to be fair . . .some of us are comparative teenagers to a few other notables on this blog.

Always thought SJS was a crotchety old biddy for one.

Not sure about Rhino. He has these delusional episodes . . .makes me think the mind isn't what it was.

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lostatlunch reckons...

Posted June 15, 2010
and Peter Carey got slammed a few weeks ago.. the martyrdom of those Australian authors who sell books by those that wish they could.

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jennicki is gonna tell you...

Posted June 15, 2010
I still wanna beat the reviewer up.

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Thomas is gonna tell you...

Posted June 15, 2010
How condescending of the reviewer to refer to your readers as a "teenage fan club" which would suggest immaturity. It would bother him, I think, that mature adults who consume and analyze news from varied sources enjoy your storytelling. (I admit to the creepy desires though.)

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John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted June 15, 2010
thomas, rofl.

and yeah, i think the biggest misfire in the review was the section about the readers. it was strange error from somebody who's the papers' chief literary reviewer. Cos I dont have that many teenaged readers at all.

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Matthew K puts forth...

Posted June 15, 2010
I will not discuss any creepiness without my lawyer present.

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Guru Bob swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 15, 2010
This unruly mob are the oldest bunch of teenage fanboys I have ever run into...

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Brian has opinions thus...

Posted June 15, 2010
The 'teenage' tag amuses me greatly. If it was about offending people it certainly missed its mark. If it was supposed to be a factual label . . .well that was a miss too.

Overall, upon mature reflection . .it just came across us hopelessly provincial. In other words . . . not part of his tribe. Tsk, tsk.

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Surtac would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
I must admit that when I read the review over breakfast on Saturday, my immediate reaction was “OK, so WTF has ol’ JB done to upset Geordie Williamson?” and eventually concluded that he was just jealous – how dare someone who writes so well on so broad a range of topics be so crass as to be commercially successful! That’s not the ivory tower postmodern literary way, don’t you know?

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted June 15, 2010
This is a prime example of the division in Australian writing, guarded by the pure literary mob who frown at popular work, often decrying it as the "McDonalds" of writing. Its not considered art as it doesn't ask us to produce a lot of skull sweat, just simply go along for the ride. Its interesting that book reviews do become entrenched along these lines but movie critics recognise the value of simply enjoying a piece which is designed solely to entertain, realising that posing the big questions and making the audience work to enjoy something isn't the be all and end all of that art form. Literary criticism should take note of how film critics acknowledge all genres, not just the "heavy" product. The division is why we never see reviews of Robert G Barrett yet he ships truckloads of books.

Where you've made the mistake JB is to seek to write to an audience and hopefully make a living out of it. You were meant to become the ex-cult writer who then dealt with the big issues of Australian life in angsty works about alienation and a protagonist's struggles to deal with historical cultural forces beyond their control. They hate the fact that you turned to the dark side of trying to make a living and this time they have chosen politics as their sword. Its also interesting that poor old David Malouf had to be dragged kicking and screaming into the critique. I'd expect the Matt Reilly and Tom Clancy references but Malouf, fine writer that he be, is always trotted out as the beacon of Oz lit. I wish they'd leave the poor bugger alone and stop using him as a shield in his advancing years. The fact is in After America you get a week's worth of entertainment for the price of two movie tickets. If I want to read something challenging I can pick up a Kafka or Dostoevsky at Chapters bookshop at five bucks a pop but in the meantime I'll be looking for people like Lee Child, Matt Reilly, James Phelan and John Birmingham when I want to get taken away somewhere for a good few hours. Sorry for the long rant but these literature tossers do get up my nose. They ain't as important as they think they are.

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Darth Greybeard asserts...

Posted June 15, 2010
The question is, did the reviewer _enjoy_ it? Because that's generally why I read a book, whatever the genre. Life is too short for Patrick White. And I'd better enjoy this one or I'll be looking for my money back.

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jennicki mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
When you get tired of ass-fucking a stick, move on to literary reviews.

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Brian would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
Ooooh . . .Jenicki . . .that's gotta be a comment of the day.

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John Birmingham would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
Therbs, that's such an impassioned yet well argued comment I've sent it on to my publisher, who I suspect feels these slings and arrows more keenly than I.

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Scott mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
Those who can write, those who can’t write reviews.

I think both Surtac and Therbs hit the nail on the head.

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Puma reckons...

Posted June 15, 2010
"towelheads" I thought our guys called them "Hodgie" these days. Seriously, I doubt most civilians could stomach 5 minutes of real GI dialogue. That scene the reviewer included seems absolutely sterile by comparison. Just look at the reaction to Generation Kill or that Apache gun camera video.

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Guru Bob puts forth...

Posted June 15, 2010
Same newspaper - excerpt from Junger's new book WAR with real dialogue by real GIs.

http://www.theaustralian.com.au/news/arts/eventually-the-monsters-will-win/story-e6frg8nf-1225873423367

Maybe he should read his own paper before he gets started in on your dialogue?

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JP reckons...

Posted June 15, 2010
JB - it's all column inches though, which is good. I learned that lesson with my first novel, which has so far had my only neg review, from the Aus's ugly sister pub the Herald Sun -- and, like you, I was working at Fairfax at the time...

It bummed me out a bit as it had been all fun and games until then. But, then a few mates emailed, then some more, saying they'd read the review and since decided to buy my book that they'd assumed would be too high-falutin for them to enjoy. It included the line: "Big on weapon details with a huge body count almost making up for the lame dialogue and daft plot." That was from the then lit editor of the paper, who's probably now selling $5 rim jobs somewhere while I'm seven books in and browsing for hovercraft.

:-)

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted June 15, 2010
jp - a review such as this is precisely why I rarely bother with reading them. I'd say this is the first book review I've read for a couple of years and that was only because JB included the link. They're too predictable about anything which has explosions and/or car chases; and for high-brow or wannabe lit they simply wank on for the sake of it and don't add much value to the decision making process.

Speaking of explosions, reminds me I gotta catch up on that last Fox book.

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sibeen mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
Cos I dont have that many teenaged readers at all.

Except for me!

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sibeen has opinions thus...

Posted June 15, 2010
ooops

best get rid of that bold.

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Scott reckons...

Posted June 15, 2010
Therbs, yeh, can’t remember the last time I bothered with a review. Most of my buying choices are influenced by sample chapters, referrals from people who like the same stuff as me or if I am not sure about the author I borrow the first book in a series from a library.

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Abigail swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 15, 2010
Yes, everyone here seems to have confirmed what I felt but thought it was just my imagination.

The guy is damning you with faint praise; at the least, using your strenghts against you while seeming to use them in your favour. I call that keeping double books.

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sparty mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
Interesting that he used a Martin Amis comparison. Having been to a couple of talks by Amis recently, its amazing how so many people seem to will-fully mis-understand what he says (and he's a basically left leaning author who has the audacity to sometimes question the precieved correctness of the left agenda, and gets a "how dare he" in response).

Pity you're not touring UK (particulary with Uk bits in the book), would be interetsing to see the response here...

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Abigail puts forth...

Posted June 15, 2010
Sparty, totally with you on Martin Amis--was just saying as much to somebody about half an hour ago!

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John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
Yeah, I should prolly name check him in the third book.

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BrianC would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
Fuck that who does this Muppet thinks he is. I notice that this review doesn't allow comments. Obviously I cant speak to the content of this book, because I haven't read it. But i can say that i have read everything you have ever written (i even bought a copy of the magazine called elevator at borders, you know the one that only had one issue)

These books aren't derivative and you should feel no need to hang your head. You know what they are. They are entertainment, with a semi-conservative message. This guys probably one of those wankers whos book shelf has a bunch'o'original editions of keats, joyce and yeats and the newest thing on there was written at the turn of the century. New fiction isnt bad fiction you effete bastard, our(my generations) stories are found in the here and now, there found in the girttyness of Guantanamo Bay, in stupidity of religious extremism, in the constant irony of our elected officials berating China for a lack of human rights, while taking ours away on the sly. We matured with Internet as our news source with our communities distributed and our friendships international. We laugh at the extreme and the crude because it true for us, more so when we see it every day.

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Orin mutters...

Posted June 15, 2010
You were meant to become the ex-cult writer who then dealt with the big issues of Australian life in angsty works about alienation and a protagonist’s struggles to deal with historical cultural forces beyond their control.

It is coming. 's called "Cry Havock" - about a middle aged guy struggling with his working class upbringing and his need to make it as a ladyboy torchsong singer in the nightclubs of Bangkok.

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Orin is gonna tell you...

Posted June 15, 2010
It ends with him wearing a Richmond football jumper, a pair of pink stockings, holding a viking helmet while weeping into a cocktail with a frilly umbrella. Touching really.

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Abigail puts forth...

Posted June 15, 2010
Orin -haha that is quite Gold.

"Cry Havoc" Richard Attenborough would totally be impressed by that, I'd say.

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Brian mumbles...

Posted June 15, 2010
Orin

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You're an evil bastard..

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But likeable.

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NBlob would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
Meh.

Opinions are like bums, everyone has one.

If this clown is payed to reveal his lit tunnel vision then good luck to him.

Much more interested in why your interview about AA (that I only found via The MiniBurger) was only announced to the Twateratti, not the rest of us your loyal shocktroops.

I know it must feel a bit odd to pimp your own media, but I for one am interested in any discussion about an eagerly anticipated sequel.

Remember that some/many of us are not tweet enabled, sort of like assuming people have and answer a mobile phone.

Flabbergasterised indeed.

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John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted June 15, 2010
Well, here's the thing. I'm doing so much pimpage at the moment, I sorta forgot.

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Stevo 73 has opinions thus...

Posted June 15, 2010
@ Puma- Yes we still call them towelheads, ragheads and Hajis, also camel jockey is still getting rotation (care of Three Kings).

Talking to digs/GIs give you exposure to language that will turn your hair grey, and will teach youa little about nasty nick names that they have for each and every officer.

I thought the passage was a little tame but still pretty accurate.

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted June 16, 2010
Puma, it was circa 2007 alternate, thus the older reference per Muslims. The Iraq/Afghanistan experience would not have been present to generate the slang from OIF/OEF. In fact, I think what is more probable would be a divergent slang based on the military's post Wave experiences.

In any case, it seemed safer to go with "towelhead."

I have to admit, speaking personally, I'm always a bit uneasy using such terms. They may be an accurate reflection of reality but here in the States we have a dedicated hard core brigade of busybodies that do nothing but lose their minds over these words when they apply to literature, or the classroom for that matter.

That said, I concur with Stevo73 that the passage was actually somewhat tame.

Figure this. The expletive "fuck" is often used as a verb, a comma, a hyphen, a semi-colon, and sometimes even a noun. This is before you get to variants and combinations of the word "fuck." Toss in the dehumanization which usually takes place during wartime, the attitudes towards neutralized opponents and what you'll find is a narrative that is not politically correct at all.

I might add, if you strive towards portraying any given modern military accurately and you fail to include The Repentant Soldier/Veteran (you know, the one who spends all of his time questioning what he/she is going, guilt ridden about their mission, etc) then you can rest assured that you are probably going to have trouble selling that story/novel to markets outside of Baen's Books, Del Rey, and the like.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Therbs has opinions thus...

Posted June 16, 2010
Murph, I believe there'll always be those who believe that dialogue which demeans, demonises or dehumanises any group should never see the light of day despite its contextual framework. Its seen as a reflection of the author's own views as opposed to a charcter's P.O.V. They don't get the fact that the audience knows the difference.

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John Birmingham asserts...

Posted June 16, 2010
Yeah, poor Steve Stirling used to take a lot of hits on that one, Therbs.

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Brian mumbles...

Posted June 16, 2010
Hmm . . .so did Heinlein in his latter books. Some people put it down to his wife's influence. I tended to think it was more a reflection of changing social conditions and freeing up the censorship laws.

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Abigail would have you know...

Posted June 16, 2010
Yes well can you imagine how neurotic things are going to get if Conroy's mind control, I mean net censorship legislation gets through?

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Puma reckons...

Posted June 16, 2010
I was joking mostly. Most liberals you reference would find raghead offensive and Haji obscure. Friend of a friend going back for 3rd tour said recently "I can't wait to get back and kill more of those filthy savages". And he surely meant it. Doubt that sell many either.

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Murphy asserts...

Posted June 17, 2010
Puma, you'd never sell a character based on your friend to most short markets. Stirling and Birmingham, among others, have found ways to outflank the usual guards of political correctness (profitability helps).

And yeah, mention Stirling's name in the wrong crowd and they'll react as if you mentioned the Anti-Christ as a Southern Baptist Bible Revival.

Finally, and I spend a lot of time hammering this into the heads of my students, understanding something on it's own terms does not mean you agree, condone, or accept it. It just means you understand it.

One of my favorite busy bodies, on a completely different topic, basically said the job of fiction writers ought to be to improve the world, write about how the world will be better, rather than write about all the grit. Writing about the grit perpetuates the problem.

Which isn't that much different from the "teach peace not war" crap I hear all the time. Perhaps if one is familiar with the nasty side of things then one is better armed to prevent relapses.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Scott has opinions thus...

Posted June 17, 2010
One of my favourite quotations comes from either Larry Niven or Robert A Heinlein,

“There is a technical term for someone who confuses the opinions of a character in a book with those of the author. That term is idiot.” Gold.

As for authors culling the grit and just giving us light fluffy feel good pap, invite such people to make a living on it, see how long until they turn to the dark side.

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted June 17, 2010
Scott, if it says anything, most of them publish in the short story markets and they STAY in the short story markets.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Orin has opinions thus...

Posted June 17, 2010
I'm not convinced on Stirling. When he's posted here to the Burger, his attitude and behavior have not exactly been exemplary. Everyone can get misquoted on the Internet, but his approach on the previous version of this site several years ago left one's willingness to be charitable in interpretation somewhat lacking.

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Murphy is gonna tell you...

Posted June 18, 2010
Stirling doesn't seem to suffer fools well, Orin. As for his conduct, well, given some of the crap I have seen out of others in the science fiction community, his behavior is pretty tame by comparison.

I still get cracked on the head for my previous behavior but when I point out that the Liberals in Science Fiction get a free pass on that score (up to and including accusing people of being something that ends with an ist, an ism, or a phobia without any actual proof) I'm basically told to shut up.

There is most certainly a double standard, Orin.

The general impression I get from the American Left especially, but the American Science Fiction in particular, is that Conservatives or anyone who is not a Liberal are supposed to behave as if they are polite, contrite and "willing to listen." Those three traits are, of course, defined by the eye of the beholder, not the conservative/non-liberal in question.

Having said that, I know Stirling mainly by way of his non-fiction postings on the net, not by way of his fiction.

As for exemplary behavior, frankly, I've seen a distinct lack of such behavior in the community over the last decade. It isn't generally known, but I didn't start out as a keyboard hammering, frothing manic. I did start out with a reasonable tone of sorts.

Over time, it seemed to me, that it was better to adopt the tactics of my opponents. It didn't seem to hurt their chances of getting published.

Turns out that I could adopt those tactics but ONLY if I wanted to expose Liberal views.

Well, turns out that I'm not a Liberal, at least by their definition. So I pay the penalty. Stirling's a little higher up in the food chain but rest assured, if they could find a way to hurt his income stream (as they often try to do with Orson Scott Card) they would most certainly do so.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Orin ducks in to say...

Posted June 18, 2010
There is being provoked into being rude and starting out that way. When you announce yourself by tipping over all the bins to people who weren't even aware of your existence - you are perhaps taking the " big shot author who says what he wants" thing a little far. After he introduced himself by insulting anyone who held a view contrary to his, I did a little googling on his online presence and came to the conclusion that there wasn't any point responding to him because a lot of people really really really really hated this guys guts and nothing that I could say could possibly compete with the scorn and contempt that so many seemed to already hold him in. I've seen contempt for people on the Internet before, but this was a whole new level of hate. I find it rather difficult to reconcile Birmo's opinion of him, especially after he announced himself here by throwing punches seemingly at random.

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Murphy has opinions thus...

Posted June 19, 2010
First, I do not remember the fracas you are referring to here at Cheeseburger Gothic. If we're going to hold such things against people then I'm probably in the same doghouse for some the rants, firefights and the like I have gotten into here (and elsewhere for that matter).

And I would not be surprised if people found it difficult to understand why Birmingham has anything to do with me.

Granted, when I state that I don't remember the arguments here, I am not disputing that they didn't happen. I'm sure they did (Stirling was involved in a firefight over at a blog where I had some trouble a couple of years back). Thing is, Stirling conducted himself with a great deal more restraint and bearing than I did.

As for why people hate the man, I think it is mainly due to the fact that he isn't a well behaved conservative science fiction writer. He is the type of writer who writes about how things really are as opposed to the politically correct way people think it should be portrayed and as such there is a dedicated, hardcore brigade of people in the community who make it a point to make life miserable for him.

Neal Asher often runs into the same trouble, if not worse. So does Card, Tom Kratman, and sometimes John Ringo does as well.

I respect the man, even though I don't agree with every view he has (I don't agree with everything Birmo says or does either, which doesn't impede my ability to work with him or be his friend). I can't really judge his writing because for some reason, with one or two exceptions, I just can't seem to get into his work. Something is missing for me and I'll be damned if I know what it is.

But if you want me to make a guess as to why Birmingham has a favorable opinion of Stirling, it would be this.

I suspect Birmo respects Stirling because they are both pros who know what the game is about.

1. Tell a story.

2. Sell a story.

3. Tell another story.

4. Sell a story

5. Repeat.

They don't let the horseshit get in the way of dealing with the reality of the field they are in. And I suspect they have much in common due to their interest in history and alternate history.

Anyway, if I had to chose between sitting at a bar with Stirling or some of the other writers in the field, I'd rather sit with Stirling.

At least I'd know where I stood with him.

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Orin has opinions thus...

Posted June 19, 2010
Generally you haven't waded in elbows up. You've said some stuff that has driven me batty at times, but you've not particularly been personal about it. Stirling started with personal attacks which is one reason why I own and encourage friends to read all Asher's and most of Card's books even though the authors themselves politically polar opposite to where I probably sit. I own only one of Stirling's which I purchased prior to his bin tipping episode here - politics doesn't really matter much, but Stirling irrevocably tarnished his brand by starting personal rather than engaging with the debate at hand. The Burger is mostly about having those debated without it getting (or at least starting) personal.

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Murphy ducks in to say...

Posted June 20, 2010
Fair enough, Orin. I must have missed the firefight in question though.

As for saying things which drive people batty, well, that's my job. :)

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Respond to 'Oz review.'

Realistic female superheroes.

Posted June 13, 2010 by John Birmingham
You'll have missed this at the Geek, as we slipped of the front of the web site. But it's totally worth a read.

Mint Slice proposed some new, PC female action types in the comments:

1. The Strap On Avenger - "Bev" a workplace access and equity consultant to the Road and Traffic Authority by day, seeks out middle managers accused of innappropriate sexual conduct in the work place. By night.she terrorises them with her bionic "appliance".

2. LUG Patrol - a team of crack female upper middle class arts/ law students on a mission to humiliate sexist academics with their superior knowledge of Catherine Mackinnon and Andrea Dworkin. Its a race against time, as each of their unique "superfeminist" powers may evaporate instantly upon graduation, when they cease being lesbians and marry men with an uncanny resemblence to their fathers.

3. The Department of Youth - a crack team of ethnically diverse young women - juvenile justice workers by day, assume their alter egos by night - seeking out to neutralise street crime wherever they may find it with their formidable arsenal of modern counselling techniques.

25 Responses to ‘Realistic female superheroes.’

Abigail ducks in to say...

Posted June 13, 2010
JB surely you're not serious? This is great. I love the second one.

Nah can't decide, they're all so good.

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Bondiboy66 asserts...

Posted June 13, 2010
Bah, my comment evaporated. Anyway, I was said something about moving away from film and TV and suggesting literature, specifically Marion Alston and Swindapa in Stirling's 'Nantucket' trilogy, which I just so happen to be re-reading at present. Hot kickarse babes...they are a lesbian couple though, which doesn't leave much for heterosexual males such as yours truly though.

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koops mutters...

Posted June 13, 2010
Wow! How topical! Somebody call Super Greer on her phallus hotline! She's gonna have a field day kicking your ironic ass!

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Abigail is gonna tell you...

Posted June 13, 2010
I'm returning to second my own comment. This is therapy. Therapy , I tells you, for a Canberran. We're up to the rafters with PC. I so love this, but it was yours, not Mints? I saw Mint Slice's very funny comment at BI and I take it you've expanded on the theme.

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John Birmingham asserts...

Posted June 13, 2010
Nah, it's all Mint Slice.

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ConspiracyCat has opinions thus...

Posted June 13, 2010
If superheroes are so super, how come they wear their undies on the outside?

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Bangar has opinions thus...

Posted June 13, 2010
Know a better way to get attention? And superheroes are all about attention getting.

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Trowzers is gonna tell you...

Posted June 13, 2010
But why are all our superheros/villians so young? Have we forgotten the menace of the deliquent grannies that Monty Python warned us about all those years ago? Well those are just the villians! On the other side are the superpowered pink-cheeked cardy wearing elderly ladies who can silence a noisy teenager with a well placed glare, and can reform a train platform litterer with merely a disapproving sniff. Sure, not as sexy (unless you're into that) and maybe not as spritely as the younger gals, but who needs to leap around when you've got powers like that?

I'm sure everybody knows at least one elderly lady who scares the pants off us for no real apparent reason apart from attitude... imagine what they're like once they put their superhero costume on?

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Lobes ducks in to say...

Posted June 13, 2010
Unfortunately superpowered old ladies have a bit of an image problem that tends to see them getting burnt at the stake.

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Timmo puts forth...

Posted June 14, 2010
I'm sure SuperGran got a look-in there sometime in the 80's, so there's one aged super hero. Not exactly "smoking hot and kicking arse" more like "sipping tea and spanking bottoms"...

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Murphy asserts...

Posted June 14, 2010
Hmm, most of these already exist in the American Science Fiction Community. :)

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Abigail reckons...

Posted June 14, 2010
Yes, sorry JB, I must have mis-read what you wrote in the above blurb.

I must say, Mint Slice is very very clever: his name, his barbed wit. You make a good double act--you'd co-write a killer good satire.

He just forgot about Fem Literary Theorists. By day they've come to rescue academia from the evil patriarchy. By night they use their words as actual weapons : beating everyone senseless with the works of Marilyn Lake.

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NBlob is gonna tell you...

Posted June 14, 2010
How about a 16 year old blonde who by day is a petulant, truculent, indolent and spotty teen with her socks scrunched down and an Ipod plugged into her ears. By night she is so vague that she forgets what she's doing halfway through changing into her B'Grrl costume.

Or perhaps a mighty amazon executive; By day she is sheduled, multitasked and blackberried to an inhuman level seeking synergies and partnerships, restructuring the triple bottom line and right sizing. By night the evil doers can go fck themselves as nothing is getting between her, Greys Anatomy and the last Tim Tam.

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted June 14, 2010
Nbob, ftw.

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Havock asserts...

Posted June 14, 2010
Bah..its the house wife by day, who tends to the domestic chores whilst keeping everything neat and tidy, latte adventures with girl freinds and steadfastly ensuring the household is functional.

By night, its a Chardy drinking, very vocal spewing in strangers cars nutbag!, prone to telling the deserved what they really should be told.

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Havock mutters...

Posted June 14, 2010
Bah..its the house wife by day, who tends to the domestic chores whilst keeping everything neat and tidy, latte adventures with girl freinds and steadfastly ensuring the household is functional.

By adding a small line this changes to a new demographic.

Plus, complaining about how much work needs to be done, the gaining of weight and battles with it, as the spare time available is vast, the food blogging and reviews, matched with spots of jet setting and pissing and moaning, time on the xbox in SOLO mode, never wanting to confront others as the arse kicking would be oh so horrible. ( keeping the girly bit at the start of course).

DAM..reckon its an author!. By night its a we cant hold our grog, IPAD slave, steve jobs Bitch that puts dubious fkn characters in its books.

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Darth Greybeard swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 14, 2010
And the terrifying . . . PassAggro Woman! By day a manager who criticises underlings publicly and behind their backs, spreads discord, makes favourites and is never, never to blame for anything. She uses her superpowers to crush workplace morale and eliminate job satisfaction wherever she finds it. I don't even want to think about what she'd do at night.

As usual N-Bob has me beat. Can't compete with Super-Bobette's power to raise an evil-doer's blood pressure to the redline with a mere roll of the eyes.

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ConspiracyCat swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 14, 2010
Oh, Nowhere Bob, that is SO WRONG! A true superwoman ALWAYS has a spare packet of Tim Tams stashed away on Greys Anatomy night. Preferably Double Coat.

Sheesh! Men just don't understand Tim Tams.

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Quokka is gonna tell you...

Posted June 14, 2010
What this town really needs is a task force styled on the gold coast's Metre Maids but to bring them up to modern times they'd be trained as Ipod Police.

My vision involves conscripting the legion of European backpackers that are already so adept at cornering their quarry on street corners thanks to steady employment from local charities, and decking them out, boys and girls alike, in fringed red g-strings, whips, knuckle dusters, steel toed boots and crop tops with the DON'T YOU DARE FKN WALK symbol emblazened over the chest.

They could be stationed at 15m intervals along all the city streets that have now been reduced to a 40km limit in order to stop ordinary folk such as myself gunning down some skull vacant tech student that's singing along to Brittney Spears and Lada Gaga, and every time one steps into the path of an oncoming Pajero, the Ipod Police would yank them back, thump them up, kick their ipods into outer space with their steel toed boots and send them all packing on the bus back to Indooroopilly with a leaflet on Hector the Safety Cat, and a stern warning not to go out in public again until they've mastered his lessons.

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Brian mumbles...

Posted June 14, 2010
John Ringo had a nice little heroine in his 'Princess of Wands' book. Straight God fearing woman who gets recruited for supernatural kickarse. Her prime talent being a gun tottin' Annie Oakley type who tended to freak out Wiccans. Long drawn out scene at a shooting range demonstrating the benefits of righteous firepower.

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Nocturnalist would have you know...

Posted June 15, 2010
The question came up on the other thread about whether it's possible to have an action heroine (or action protagonist in general) who doesn't do violence. I've been considering this and the closest I can get is Terry Pratchett's Granny Weatherwax, who can do violence when she needs to but generally doesn't, at least not in the biff-pow-blam sense that most of the conversation was about. Anyone else?

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Lobes mutters...

Posted June 15, 2010
Theres a character from the Marvel Comics universe called The Sentry. Amongst his powers he has the ability to radiate a calming aura that causes a feeling of peace and well being to whomever he focuses it upon.

As such he is one of the few characters who is able to prevail against the Incredible Hulk.

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NataliatheRussianSpy is gonna tell you...

Posted June 15, 2010
Firstly, I remember all that Babs-lovin' 'round at the Burger and it surprised me as much as you. I think the clincher was the scene in which she battered her eyelids and flat out lied to defend her 'man'. Maybe her unshakable loyalty and dependability is what men find appealing. (aren't all men secretly afraid their wives would auction them off in a heartbeat?)

Secondly, I think all you blokes secretly harbour adrogynous fantasies. Dontcha reckon Dolph would look great with a pair of jaunty double Ds?

As for me, Sarah Connor will always stand out because her sexuality wasn't contrived, nor did she use it as part of her manipulative weaponary. She was like an angry lioness. The mix of fierce mothering instincts and those gorgeous upper arms of hers won me over.

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Skunkworks is gonna tell you...

Posted June 16, 2010
Reminds me of Millie Tant from Viz comics.

Millicent Buckridge Tant, known as Millie Tant, is a character in the British comic, Viz. A caricature of the militant feminist mentality, Millie, who thinks of herself as a champion of "Wimmin's" rights, is actually so self-centered, dismissive of the feelings of others, and (it has to be said) masculine that she usually ends up being part of the problem rather than the solution.

Despite the fact that she often exhibits signs of bisexuality, most of her time is spent expressing her infinite hatred of men, whom she often refers to as either "phallocrats", "potential rapists" or just "rapists".

Millie is a lesbian (except for when the punchline requires her to secretly be heterosexual), and insists on referring to other women as "fellow lesbians", regardless of their actual orientation. Most of the storylines seem to indicate that sexual frustration, amongst other things, is the root of her problems. It can even be assumed that she is a self hating heterosexual who expresses her self loathing by castigating men, suggesting this is internalized misogyny.

She often complains that various phenomena are actually metaphors for the suppression of women: for instance, she once declared that fireworks are actually 'big explosive penises' that 'skewer and rape the virgin female sky'. During such rants, she raises her fist in the air and literally foams at the mouth. The epitome of dogmatic, humourless political correctness, she once refused to make a snowman, instead offering to make a snow-black lesbian rape victim in a wheelchair. In another adventure she plays a card game with an old woman, but ends the game by calling her a homophobe — just because she said she had a "straight flush". Millie also had a baby using donated sperm to artificially inseminate herself with a veggie burger baster (as a vegan, she refused to use a turkey baster) but despite having planned an all-natural home birth she ended up in hospital, using pethidine, and begging the nurse to call the father to come and hold her hand.

At the end of each comic strip, Millie Tant invariably forgets her feminist stance and is shown to be a hypocrite, e.g. asking a man to get rid of a mouse while she is standing on a chair, or knitting baby clothes with a simpering look on her face.

She is also usually mistaken for an ugly man.

From wiki

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Abigail would have you know...

Posted June 16, 2010
Skunkworks, gold.

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Respond to 'Realistic female superheroes.'

After America book trailer.

Posted June 4, 2010 by John Birmingham
What else is there to say.

After America trailer

32 Responses to ‘After America book trailer.’

drej08 mumbles...

Posted June 4, 2010
Mighty AWSM indeed. Does it remind anyone else of the BSG episode trailers ?

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Tarl asserts...

Posted June 4, 2010
And here I was expecting to see a truck trailer loaded with books. With at least one ready to sell to me.

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Guy mutters...

Posted June 4, 2010
I can't wait for it to hit the bookstores so I can steal one...

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John Birmingham asserts...

Posted June 4, 2010
S'okay. I still get paid for that.

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Moko reckons...

Posted June 4, 2010
Grouse.

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Bondiboy66 swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 4, 2010
So when is this movie out at the cinemas?

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Abe has opinions thus...

Posted June 4, 2010
AWSM!

Yes Drej, I agree - was waiting for Tricia Helfer's voice to purr... "Previously on Without Warning."

Actually if you decide to dub in her voice JB, I totally reserve my rights...I'm guessing $10?

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mrblenny swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 4, 2010
Nice one, will have to get a signed copy on release!

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mckinneytexas is gonna tell you...

Posted June 5, 2010
Fricking awesome! Excellent! Damn, can't wait.

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Rhino mutters...

Posted June 5, 2010
Did anyone else see the guy with the amazing biceps in that one scene? Awesome... very awesome.

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Murphy puts forth...

Posted June 5, 2010
Yes, yes, yes, yes!!!!!!!

That is what we have needed for a long time. A FRAKIN' BOOK TRAILER!

Trinity loved the trailer too.

Rhino, I was distracted by that strange crossdresser with the machinegun. Wasn't his name Havock or something? :)

Respects,

Murph

On the Outer Marches

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Koops mutters...

Posted June 5, 2010
Does this trailer mean that Roland Emmerich is directing the movie?

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NBlob puts forth...

Posted June 5, 2010
That's some pretty cool sh!t right there

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HAVOCK has opinions thus...

Posted June 5, 2010
did you see me commanding the LEGIONS of the righteous..I was on the building..All general like

FKN WICKED!

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donna swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 5, 2010
AWSM!!!!! Cant wait to get it in my hands woo hoooo!!!! Good one JB.

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MickH mutters...

Posted June 5, 2010
WHOA!

Where's the movie?

totally awesome

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lostatlunch swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 5, 2010
MWAAAAAA MWAAAAAA

people need shiny expolsive thingies

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BrianC reckons...

Posted June 5, 2010
I liked it, or as Hav's would say FKN AWSME.

Usually I think "Book Trailers" are an exercise in authors self procreation, but this hit just the right tone.

Well Done that man

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Barnesm swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 5, 2010
Needed more Rhino, but other than that AWESOME

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Abigail has opinions thus...

Posted June 5, 2010
JB, that's terribly exciting!

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joe asserts...

Posted June 6, 2010
I'm not "In" enough to get it I guess... I laughed at the President Kipper bit.

But it looks pretty slick.

Seeing as the TV miniseries might take some legal wrangling..... can I sign up now for Beta-Testing the PC version of the video Game? PLZ PLZPLZPLZPLZPLZ??

Anyhoos: Print it, I'll buy it.... have just run out of thinkybooks and am torn between going and ransacking Borders, and stealing off with some derivative teenyfluff from the relos.

Nice to see y'all still here doing ya thing... whatever that is.

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T2 mutters...

Posted June 6, 2010
I've never seen a video book trailer before. What a great idea. I'm gonna post it on my FB page. Congrats, JB.

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Quokka reckons...

Posted June 6, 2010
Nicely done.

I have to ask.

Was yesterday's UFO sighting over Redcliffe part of the promo or was that just another failed attempt by the US military to shoot SJS back into space?

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Brian asserts...

Posted June 6, 2010
Shoulda had people on bikes (as you can't get past all the car wrecks) getting Napalmed. Abrams rumbling over trashed SUV's. Women with tattoo's . . .General Havock doing a Patton in front of the flag . . .

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El Coqui swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted June 6, 2010
Bravo!

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Paul Nicholas Boylan mumbles...

Posted June 7, 2010
Damn! How fucking great is that?

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Paul Nicholas Boylan has opinions thus...

Posted June 7, 2010
I gotta watch that again.

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TeamAmerica is gonna tell you...

Posted June 8, 2010
Glad to see that your sequel will be out soon. It looks like your publisher didn't respond to it as negatively as the one in Michael J. Astrue's poem does:

" he aims at a kind of sardonic comedy, as in his “Rejection Note for Paradise Regained,” imagining what John Milton’s publishers might have said to his follow-up to Paradise Lost:

Loved that first book—it’s got no equal—

but, Johnny, we don’t love your sequel.

If you would only take a chance

on self-help or a gay romance,

we’d let you keep your last advance.

Phony conspiracies would do

if you could find a hook or two—

like someone famous who won’t sue.

Marketing knows you’ll see the light,

and thinks Da Vinci is just right."

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TJX has opinions thus...

Posted June 8, 2010
It's a shame that Hollyweird will probably find this saga too politically incorrect to be a movie or mini series.

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TJX mutters...

Posted June 8, 2010
QUOTE -"By drej08, June 4, 2010 @ 5:01 pm

Mighty AWSM indeed. Does it remind anyone else of the BSG episode trailers?"

BSG sucks, it was a piss poor PC attempt at Military Sci-fi. There I said it. :D

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Oxygen Plant mumbles...

Posted June 8, 2010
Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible, as you gain expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more information? It is extremely helpful and beneficial to your readers.

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Gutz puts forth...

Posted June 12, 2010
All i can say...is...the wait is almost over!

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Respond to 'After America book trailer.'