Sunday, November 24, 2013

Indoctrinaire To The Islanders.

One of the first SF books I ever read as a teenager was Indoctrinaire by Christopher Priest.

It has been a very long time since I read it last, but I do know that as a young man I fell in love with the book and with Priest's writing.  Over the past three (and more) decades, I've read pretty much everything he's published. Every time I read his words I'm blown away at how efficiently beautiful they are.

This week I suddenly realised I'd never read The Affirmation, despite its occupancy of my bookshelf for many years. I started reading it a couple of nights ago. It is, of course, superb. I was completely thrilled to discover elements of the story take place in one of my favourite worlds, a string of islands known as The Dream Archipelago.

Priest has a short story collection with this title, set in this world. The opening story, The Negation, is one of the most beautiful I've ever read. A 'novel', The Islanders, was released a couple of years back. It's like a Lonely Planet guide to the islands, although the entries build to tell a story. Truly amazing.

So I was thrilled to be back in The Dream Archipelago. I always enjoy my visits there. After that I might visit some of his other worlds.

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