Literature®by Guillermo Stitch Published 01 Jul 2018
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We don't know exactly when Literature® takes place and we don't know exactly where. All we know is that Philip Marlowe would fit right in.
We don't get Marlowe though. We get Billy Stringer. And Billy is on nobody's trail.
He's the prey.
The day hasn't begun very well for Billy. He just messed up his first big assignment, he's definitely going to be late for work, his girlfriend won't get back to him and, for reasons she has something to do with, he's dressed like a clown.
Also, he's pretty sure someone is going to kill him today. But then, that's an occupational hazard, when you're a terrorist.
He's a bookworm too, which wouldn't be a problem–or particularly interesting–except that in Billy's world, fiction is banned. Reading it is what makes him an outlaw.
Why? Because people need to get to work.
It's fight or flight time for Billy and he's made his choice. But he has to see Jane, even if it's for the last time–to explain it all to her, before she finds out what he has become. That means staying alive for a little while.
And the odds are against him.
"Literature® speaks to the industrialisation of art, and also to the link between alienation and radicalisation in consumerist societies. Mainly though, it speaks to our need for great stories, by providing one. The conceptual is never allowed to overpower the human. This is a love story. There is heart here, and heartache. And, crucially, a chase scene."
This was a weird and trippy, quick little sci fi novella and I enjoyed it more than I anticipated. We aren't quite sure where the book is set, but it takes place in a time where literature no longer exists.
The author has created a futuristic, dystopian world which is full of new tech, literature has been stripped from people and everything you do read and all media is completely controlled. I probably would have given this 4 stars if I hadn't felt lost in the plot so many times whilst reading it, but having said that it was overall a fun, interesting and enjoyable read! I really like the simple black and white cover of the book as well; I'm excited to see what else the author has in store!
I would like to thank the author for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
A single day - and a bad one, at that- in the life of Billy Stringer. In a worldscape where fiction is banned and words have taken on a new power, Billy has become a hunted man. Is this a thriller? A love story? Yes to both of those, and more besides.
Literature® is a compelling adventure in a noir environment that evokes those of writers ranging from Philip K. Dick to Grant Naylor. I devoured it in one delightful sitting.
Chapeau, Mr Stitch.
I received a free copy in return for an honest review.
Literature® is an interesting spin on the dystopian theme, corporate rule. In this world reading books is considered rebellion. I didn't get a good sense of why though. (We Goodreads members would be the subversives here). Our hero, Billy, is the hapless and clueless pawn in the conflict.
A bit choppy for me, time frames changed without warning. We eventually wind up with a man running for his life. Well written and complex, but it left me a bit unsatisfied at the ending. Don't get me wrong, the ending was beautifully written and emotionally engaging. Just unfulfilling for me. I got the feeling that I missed something important along the way, or maybe that I am just not cerebral enough to get the full benefit from Literature®.
If you like cerebral and at times ambiguous motivation, go for it. Enjoy!
Literature is a sci-fi novella. Billy Stinger is a terrorist that is always strapped for time and has some explaining to do with his life choices. The odds are definitely against him in this thrilling fictional story.
The story is just one day and begins with him showing up later for work, he has not dressed appropriately, and his girlfriend is not happy with him. Billy’s character is interesting in the matter of being so particular. He isn’t necessarily the hero nor is he the anti-hero. The mixture made a difference to this short story.
Since the story was short, I initially had my doubts if it was going to cover all the delicate elements of which a sci-fi story would need. The author eliminated this by jumping right in and letting the reader know everything right from the start.
The story is set in the future. However, it is not as scientifically advanced you would think a sci-fi story would be. Instead, the author appeared to take the more comical side of things and added a few odd social norm behaviors so the mix.
The literature was particularly strong, and it kept its standard up to the end. I would be very interested to read a longer tale from this author and recommend this book as a short read.
The story grabbed me in the first few pages and pulled me into the author’s distorted, dystopian world; at once both bizarre and yet frighteningly familiar. I can’t think of anyone to whom I would not highly recommend this book.
The protagonist is immediately relatable and, like the best thrillers, I found myself desperately rooting for him to get through this day-in-the-life adventure. However this is also totally unlike anything else I have read. It appears to cross more than one genre and it is impossible to predict what is going to happen. I was genuinely upset at the end, not because of the way it ended, but because I wanted to keep going. There was so much rich material here, the brevity of the novella seemed too limiting.
All that aside, my favorite thing about this book is the writing style. Stitch writes with a wit and nuance that charms and chills. I was laughing and in anguish in equal measure. Guillermo Stitch has a rare talent for word craft and pacing and I look forward to more from this author.
I was given a free copy of this work in exchange for a fair and honest review.
"Will keep readers turning pages." PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
"A tour de force." INTERZONE
"One of the cleverest stories I’ve read this year. It’s whip-smart, well-paced, deeply satirical and dappled with just enough dark and light to keep the reader riveted."
ANNE CUNNINGHAM (Irish Independent, Independent on Sunday, Irish Times and Sunday Times)
"Freaking amazing. Any agent or publishing house that passed this up made a big mistake. This is also a nomination for our Novel of the Year award. Captivating and timely, with a perfect bittersweet ending." UNDERGROUND BOOK REVIEWS
"The best new work of speculative fiction I have read since the 20th Century...laced with enough scalpel-sharp wit and dark humour that you'll never notice the satire sliding into your awareness until it's too late to feel any real discomfort." SFF CHRONICLES
"If you like the thrill of the chase you get from hard-boiled and neo-noir, but need the extra intellectual stimulation of exploring deeper themes, then Literature® should be your next go to novella." SIGNAL HORIZON
Literature® is on sale now in paperback and Kindle editions. Please consider getting a copy.
The buy links are live at www.guillermostitch.com
Thanks to all.