Monday, February 1, 2016

Monday Excerpt: Fluxing Universe of Shapes

Now Playing: Daft Punk - Recognizer (Tron: Legacy OST)

[Introduction].

I don't think too highly of this book's plot. I thought it started off great, had a really interesting premise, even great writing in the beginning. Then, right after the main character, Sadie, goes into the mind of the boy, Ford, the entire premise gets wasted in what basically amounts to a murder-mystery plot. And our two leads gradually become more and more insufferable. (Ford more so, but that's because the kid started at the bottom then dug himself a pit of atrocity).

But whilst reading those opening chapters, I was really drawn into the concept. The imagery can become kind of abstract at times, but just like I discussed in the Octavia Butler excerpt, it's done so well here it doesn't lose me. It manages to stay grounded.

(Fading by amamak photography! on Flickr)

Focusing her eyes not through Ford's but somewhere closer, she found herself watching as points of color, red and green and yellow and purple, hundreds, then thousands of them, materialized like a George Seurat painting into a shimmering image of a boy smiling blissfully while a girl, face hidden by a mass of dark hair, kissed the corner of his mouth. 
It was dazzling, magical. As Sadie's eyes adjusted to this new focal length, she saw that this image wasn't the only one, it was happening all around her in his mind, millions of points of color, a massive, fluxing universe of shapes, images, and scenes forming and fading synthetically into one another. It seemed boundless, an endless stream, whipped by at the speed of thought and yet clearly visible to Sadie. A fall day at a lake, a crushed beer can, bunk beds, a hand reaching-- 
"Plum," Kansas announced triumphantly. "That's her name. Real pretty, right?" 
The images--memories? Fantasies?--vanished. Sadie heard a low thump and realized the entire episode had taken place in the space of one of Ford's heartbeats. 
- Minders by Michele Jaffe 

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"Science and science fiction have done a kind of dance over the last century... The scientists make a finding. It inspires science fiction writers to write about it, and a host of young people read the science fiction and are excited, and inspired to become scientists...which they do, which then feeds again into another generation of science fiction and science..."
- Carl Sagan, in his message to future explorers of Mars.