|About the Book|
I picked this up because I thought this would be a good way to introduce myself to Doctorows fiction style, and because its a great size and length for travel-reading.My number one complaint here is how misled I felt. Goodreads describes the plot thusly: In a Disney-dominated future, a transhuman teenager engages in high velocity adventures until he meets the meat girl of his dreams and is forced to choose between immortality and sex. The back cover copy goes as far as to say: He must choose between immortality and sex... and has fun doing it! ...WHAT BOOK DID THESE COPY PEOPLE READ?Disney-dominated and this forced to choose between stuff makes it sound like they heard about this book from a friend of a friend and are a bit fuzzy on the details. Fun is soo off the mark I wonder if it was an intentional trick. Do NOT sit down with this expecting some kind of scifi sex comedy romp. The one sex scene inspires neither laughter nor arousal. In a list of top words I would use to describe this novella, fun would be waaay down there below grief, heartwreching, disturbing, dad issues, ambivalence, and trauma. I mean, there are also dog-powered squirrel robots, but Doctorow is playing with some real psychic horror here. Its very clever, and often quite charming, but I would not say fun. Going in with that expectation left me feeling a lot more chewed up and spit out at the end than I think I would have otherwise.Anyway, yeah, its a fine dystopian story, and the speech and the interview were also pretty good reads.