The Orphan Master’s Son is beautiful, heart-breaking fiction. But to write of things that some would call genocide as, “the slow endless pitch of everything to come,” is just too lovely, too contemporary, too literary.
Reamde finds itself reveling in gun violence, a preoccupation not only with the the typical drama of cover fire and heads exploding under a sniper’s hail, but with the geeky details—hammers, safeties, gauges, and even idiosyncrasies of certain models of pistol. It is unflinching, unquestioning, and ultimately not very much fun.
When I was a kid, opening a sci-fi or fantasy book with a map inside front cover was always thrilling — to look at this imaginary landscape. And it’s still thrilling. I’m still a sucker for books where the first thing you see is a map…because of this feeling that you’re going into another world.