June 14, 2014

Cauldron of Ghosts

David Weber and Eric Flint have written a third novel in their series about the planet, Torch, of freed genetic slaves.

The book focuses upon the return of Anton Zilwicki and Victor Cachat to Mesa. This involves a twist in that they are able to literally shed their skin, and acquire new skin with previously unknown, to the Mesans, DNA. Their internal DNA, in their body organs, spleen, liver, sperm, etc., is the original stuff, but the DNA that they will pass by contact is different. An interesting premise for all the CSI fans out there.

Weber typically has lengthy political discussions, usually tilted towards a right-wing perspective, in his books. Flint, on the other hand is a former labor organizer, and a bit of a leftie. His writing seems to tend towards sociology and a Marxist perspective. Now both of those are junk, sociology usually being the stomping grounds of intellectually challenged football players and other semi-pro athletes. As for Marxism, the less said the better. You can read the sociological stuff, and then forget it.

The plot involves Victor and Anton in violent action with a group of disaffected and second class citizens of Mesa. The plot moves swiftly towards a satisfying conclusion, but without the megadeaths, we get mere kilodeaths, to which we've become accustomed.

Next up, Kant's second critique, The Critique of Practical Reason.