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You kids get off my lawn. 

Strange Weirds

Keeping It Real - Justina Robson

A real oddball of a novel, which is mostly good, but occasionally puzzling. Background is thus: a quantum bomb (babble babble something about CERN technobabble) was set off in the early aughts, reordering history and setting Earth in touch with other realms, stuff like where elves and demons and the like live. So there's an Earth that looks a lot like ours, but it's all leftways, and also elves and stuff.


I have this writer friend that says that a novel "shouldn't have too many weirds", and this violates that edict many times over. There are weirds all over the damn place, from alt-history to magic to fancy tech to what odd. That the novel hangs together as well as it does is really something, given the pull in multiple directions. I will give it this: it's energetic as hell, and I never knew at all what was going to happen next. 


Another saving grace was the protagonist, who was very likable to me. Even though it was was obvious she was living in deep delusion and reflexive pain (maybe because, really), I felt for her struggles with all sorts of stuff. A very unusual mix of the science fictional and the fantastic, which isn't entirely successful, but I honestly appreciate the attempt at fusion. Feels almost brave? Is that the right word?