Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Jennifer Morgue

By Charles Stross

The second book in a series of stories featuring British esoteric agent and hacker extraordinaire Bob Howard; this novel deals with various Lovecraftian concepts rolled into a modern cyber setting. Howard, whose career as an agent begins in The Atrocity Archive has been sent to stop a mad business tycoon from triggering a spectacular war between two different groups of the Great Deep Ones. In order to do this he has to conform to a powerful spell and act in almost complete ignorance of the facts which leads to a lot of fumbling in the dark and moments of abject terror... all described with Stross's inclination for Pratchett style humour.

I'd like to be mean and punish the story for the humour (I dislike Pratchett style humour in lieu of a gripping read), but this was a gripping read so I'm awarding it three stars. The story isn't brilliant, and the profound influence of magical/arcane knowledge which the story describes was getting out of hand. Conspiracies to keep arcane knowledge from the public I can swallow, but there is a line across which Stross has strayed and at times the story descended into farce... but it was good anyway and I read it fast which would indicate that despite my pessimism, I enjoyed it.

No comments: