Keep the Giraffe Burning (John Sladek) pdf, epub, doc

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One of my favourite short-story collections by one of my favourite writers. Seventeen hilarious, unsettling, ingenious and extremely original ideas-based fictions, each one of which is crammed with dozens of offbeat conceits. Sladek is an unjustly neglected writer; critics have tended to label him as ‘too clever for his own good’ (whatever that absurdity means) and he never received the recognition due to him. But there was no sharper satirist of indolent thinking.

His work won’t appeal to readers who insist on strong characterisation and the logic of everyday events. In Sladek’s world, ideas are the characters and his range of alternative logics means his plots are often resolutely scholastic and dismissive of conventional ‘common sense’, based instead on mathematical progression, word association or intricate puzzles. He spoofs and lampoons the Kafkaesque absurdities of the modern world not through emotional tension but with the aid of paradoxes and metafiction. He was one of the few SF writers capable of mocking and progressing the genre at the same time.

Some of the best stories included in this book are: ‘Elephant with Wooden Leg’, an adventure set inside a lunatic think tank; ‘The Design’, in which the social connections between individuals form the struts of a bridge; ‘The Face’, a horror story about a disembodied living visage; ‘The Hammer of Evil, a romp with impossible mindgames; ‘The Locked Room,’ perhaps the most ingenious detective story ever written; ‘Heavens Below’, in which fifteen different utopias collide; and ‘The Great Wall of Mexico’, a tale of paranoia and political cynicism which perhaps has even more relevance today than when it was written.

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Book info

  • Author:
  • Publisher:Panther Granada
  • File: 4.3 Mb
  • Ganre: Short Stories
  • ISBN: 9780586047576
  • Pages 205
  • Rating: 4.49 (28 votes)


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