What da cover says: The first marketable thought to text device is released for public consumption in 2031. That same year, author Cassius Wagner will have a seizure. At least, that is what the novel says: the novel to which he awakens in fragments one morning after a late night of writing. This novel. Terrified to have a prophetic manuscript unfurling at his heels, his desperation to evade his fate prevents him from considering that his lover and editrix, Katherine Beauvoir, might be wrestling with a destiny of her own. Told in four psychedelic parts which peak with the fable of a sublingual Huntress as she fights to save her King, THE LIGHTNING STENOGRAPHY DEVICE blurs the speculative fiction and fantasy genres to explore the fabric of literature, and the boundaries of reality.
What I says: Wow, what an epic book. Before you start this book I highly recommend reading MF Sullivan’s first novel “Delilah My Woman”, that book is linked to this one in little ways and having that knowledge of the first book makes those links more effective. There are four parts to this novel and each one manages to stand well on it’s own. Part 1 is about the creation of the device and discovering what it can do. The device is called the Lightning Stenography Device (Or LSD for short), it’s a headband you wear and it transforms your thoughts into text, a new form of writing. It is found that the device will write whilst you are sleeping…and that is where parts 2 and 3 kick in.
Part 2 follows Cassius, a renowned writer and his denial of the device and eventual acceptance. Part 3 follows Kitty, also a writer, who has already accepted the device but now is denying what it can do. There is much discussion of God, consciousness and whether anything is real or just God’s imagination. It is incredibly intriguing and whilst reading this I am working my way through The Brothers Karamazov at work, similar thoughts on God and I’ve gotta admit that this beats Karamazov hands down.
Then as we reach part 4, for this reader at least the LSD really starts to kick in. Kings and Queens and Witches and talking Animals and all kinds of madness. It took me a while to figure out what is going on, it is one of those things open to interpretation, each reader is going to come up with their own opinion of what is going on and that is the genius of this book. I don’t know if I’m correct but part 4 was very similar to Dante’s Inferno, travelling through the afterlife to get to paradise.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this, even though at times it felt above my head, still taking things slow helped me keep up. If I were to be picky I do have one problem with the book, the jump between parts 3 and 4 is not smooth, it does feel like you are starting a brand-new story, a better link up would have helped this reader.
Top writing from a very talented author.
Big Thanks to the author for sending me a signed copy, very very awesome of her.
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