Friday, June 14, 2013

Book #30

Callahan's Secret, by Spider Robinson. Unabridged audio. 

This is the third book in this series -- I have previously reviewed books 1 & 2.

The most interesting point about this series as each successive volume was released was how it morphed from a mostly disconnected series of stories into a single narrative. By this point, he has written almost a novel with a beginning, a middle, and an end. Many of the recognizable characteristics of other Callahan books are here -- the puns, the wacky characters, and more puns.

And the focus in this book is definitely the end, as in the end of the Earth. A character we have met in prior stories, whom we have come to like, is on the run from his otherwordly overlords. Well, they have finally tracked him down to Earth, and to Callahan's. and threaten to destroy the entire planet if the customers at Callahan's don't turn over the refugee alien.

But when Spider Robinson actually shows up at the end of the book, I thought maybe the meta-narrative had gone too far. But most of what this story was, was an extended "author's note," where Spider talks about the online community that had sprung up around his books, and talked about the latest books that were coming 
out (Callahan's-related and non).

There are a few moments where this reads like it was written in the mid-1980s, but that’s because it was written in the mid-1980s.The concerns, the drama, the angst, was a bit dated, but Robinson's sincerity overcomes that, and the book is still a fun read.

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