Detailed view for the Book: Galaxies





Science Fiction
Criticism & Commentary


# Date Publisher Binding Cover
1 1975-00-00  

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Synopsis by Michael Battaglia (Amazon reader):

The plot summary on the back of the book does no justice to the actual content of the book and indeed makes one wonder if the person who did that actually read the book, unless Malzberg himself wrote it as a complicated joke. The "plot" then. Basically, just as the author writes in the beginning, it's the series of notes for a novel called "Galaxies" where a woman space technician accidentally pilots her ship into a black galaxy (a black hole, essentially). The author uses the idea of sketches for a novel and this as a jump off point for some of the funniest explorations of the nature of writing and science fiction ever, both as a genre and as a publishing market. I've rarely laughed out loud so many times, Malzberg dips from seriousness to hilarity while keeping that same dry cynical tone (even funnier if you've seen a picture of him, he has the most dour, long face I've ever seen), all the while seeming to wink just at the edges that it's all in good fun. He debates the content of the novel, how much sex to put in, where science comes into play, the nature of science in science fiction, the entire bit and manages not only to hit his mark each and every time but manages to make all this stuff just as relevant today, probably the hardest part. Back then people probably thought this book was "weird" after all it is written as notes for a novel but that's the entire point there was no other way for the point to be gotten across (and as the author says the novel could never be written properly, since it takes place in the 40th century). A slim work that won't take up much of your time, you'll probably spend more time thinking about what you've read and pondering it than actually reading the book.

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