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Book Review: Metrophage: A Novel
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Metrophage: A Novel
Paperback | Kindle Edition
Written by Richard Kadrey
Includes a Q & A with Cory Doctorow
Harper Collins Publishers/ Harper Voyager
Release Date: November 4, 2014
Cover Price: $14.99

Richard Kadrey, author of the “Sandman Slim” series of novels, re-releases his very first effort, Metrophage: A Novel, 20 years after it was first printed, as a signed collectible paperback on November 4th.

This book not only brings back the classic dystopian “Last Ass” (future Los Angeles) with Jonny Gordon, forever injured and in trouble with the law and the outlaws (who’s who?), but also includes a Q & A with Cory Doctorow, science fiction author and journalist, and Richard Kadrey himself.

Kadrey fans need this in their collection, despite having probably read this 37 times. The story is still set far in the future, even though it is 20 years old. People plug into their pain and pleasure, and L.A. is a den of drugs and sex and disease. The cops are useless and the government is on the take. Jonny Gordon deals and sometimes uses drugs on the black market, but has never really chosen a side, even when he seemed to. It may be why he is almost killed at every turn, his self-destructive streak rivaled only by his self-preservation.

One disease, more-than-leprosy, is killing off society more than the gunfire, and there doesn’t seem to be a cure. Can Jonny find it? Does he care enough? This novel is not short on action and blood. The descriptions of the wasteland are graphic, and the readers are as clueless as Jonny on who can be trusted. You will be as fascinated as Jonny with the references to the past.

Kadrey says in his Q & A: “I don’t know how many people realize that the manic energy of Metrophage is more about my fear than trying to portray a speedy (in the Virilio sense) future L.A.”

Well, whether we realized it or not…it worked.

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