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Michael Gouker's books

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The Dispatcher (2021, Subterranean) 4 stars

Review of 'The Dispatcher' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

John Scalzi has some absolutely incredible novels. He's one of the best sff authors at worldbuilding. His characters have real-life problems, and their pain and suffering helps suspend the disbelief. The Dispatcher is not a great novel, but it is a very good example how this writer can pull a single thread (a weak one to be sure) and see how everything collapses. The principal idea is that when people are murdered, they are resurrected in a safe place. John Scalzi takes this simple thought out for a ride. When it branches to philosophy halfway through the story, the story deliivers hugely.

I love his bigger stories a lot more, but this guy is really talented, and maybe it's in the smaller pieces that it shows most. Well-played!

Bellwether (1997) 4 stars

Pop culture, chaos theory and matters of the heart collide in this unique novella from …

Review of 'Bellwether' on 'Goodreads'

5 stars

This book is brilliant. I loved the fad asides. The story of self-discovery is absolutely delicious. My favorite character is Management but they are all wonderful.

Silver in the Wood (Paperback, 2019, Tom Doherty Associates) 5 stars

There is a Wild Man who lives in the deep quiet of Greenhollow, and he …

Review of 'Silver in the Wood' on 'Goodreads'

4 stars

Sensational worldbuilding. Tangled forest swooning with lusty figures of lore. All those hooks from the past snatch at the present. I really loved the characters too, especially the mother.

What Moves the Dead (Hardcover, 2022, Tor Nightfire) 3 stars

From T. Kingfisher, the award-winning author of The Twisted Ones, comes What Moves the Dead, …

Review of 'What Moves the Dead' on 'Goodreads'

3 stars

I enjoyed the story but it missed a little for me. I love horror but this well-written tale did not scare me. The characters are good, the backstory too, but I want more than just atmosphere.

Review of 'Woke Racism' on 'Goodreads'

2 stars

I was disappointed. McWhorter is so intelligent, but he sounds out of touch here. At the same time, his arguments are persuasive, because his command of language frankly scintillates. It was a hard read, but I guess my wokeness is beyond this particular inoculation. Maybe after I see more substantial progress I'll feel differently, but what's wrong with working harder for reform after so many have turned a deaf ear? Motives matter.