Friday, September 30, 2016

Great genre mixing

If you like funny books but have trouble finding funny novels I can't recommend enough. Aside from the fact that it's a hilarious humor site it's also a fantastic place to find authors because the Cracked writers are constantly getting book deals.

Chris Bucholz writes bad advice columns and funny articles for Cracked, he's also written a novel called Severance about a generation ship from Earth traveling to an Earth-like planet a couple of hundred years in the future. The novel is a combination of science fiction, murder mystery, comedy, and action/adventure. It's sort of an inverted Sherlock Holmes thing, actually, with minor criminals solving a major crime that could change the future of the human race as a whole.

The story jumps to different points in the process of moving from Earth to a new planet which gives a really interesting perspective on the history set up by the story. There is also a great background discussion of the issues of genetic diversity that would become a problem on any realistic colonizing journey, which is handled very well and brings up the ethics of gene tampering and that's exactly the kind of geeky theoretical ethical dilemma I'm here for.

I really liked the characters and history of the ship, I think a lot of work went into building a believable world. I enjoyed the novel as a whole but it was little details like meat-trees and faulty thermometers that helped create an element of realism for such a speculative setting.

I'd love to see more novels from Bucholz in the future, and I'd definitely be open to reading more of his work.

     - Alli

Bucholz, Chris. Severance. Apex Publications. Lexington: Kentucky. 2014.

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