Homer's Travels: Book: Brooke Bolander's "The Only Harmless Great Thing"

Monday, March 11, 2019

Book: Brooke Bolander's "The Only Harmless Great Thing"

This year I have chosen only one book to read (The first one).  The other three (and the fourth I am currently reading) have been free ebooks you get when you sign up for the Tor.com newsletter.  Tor is a publisher of science fiction and fantasy books and the books have been, so far, an eclectic mix of genres.  Letting Tor.com pick my reading has exposed me to author's I would never look twice at.  I consider that a good thing.

The latest of these selections is a short novella.  Brooke Bolander's "The Only Harmless Great Thing" is a very strange book.  It took me a while to figure out when and where it was happening.  It is an alternate history taking place in the early twentieth century where the Radium Girls, sentient elephants, radioactivity, and early demonstrations of electricity weave a quirky tale.

I like quirky.  This book was almost too quirky for me but as I figured out what was going on and I sorted out the different threads, the story grew on me.

I gave this book four stars out of five on Goodreads.  Quirky can be difficult but if you stick with it it can become something wonderful.

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