Salon recommends

An unsettling futuristic novel about the enslavement of mankind and more of our favorite new books.


Salon Staff
August 5, 2002 9:14PM (UTC)

What we're reading, what we're liking

The Mount by Carol Emshwiller
This is most definitely a strange novel, told from the point of view of a pubescent boy growing up in a future version of this world in which an alien race has subjected mankind. The aliens, called Hoots, are brilliant and can sense smells and sounds entirely outside the range of human perception, but their bodies (except for their very powerful hands) are weak, and they use human beings like horses to get around on as well as for physical labor (and this gives the whole thing an unsettlingly kinky feel). The hero, Charley, is the son of a rebel against this order, but he's been raised to serve the young Hoot who will eventually rule the planet. How he sorts out his loyalties is much more psychologically nuanced and observant than what you usually get from science-fiction novels of this kind, and Emshwiller's prose is beautiful, too.

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-- Laura Miller

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