Aliens in This World

An ordinary Catholic and a science fiction and fantasy fan.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

The Green Flame's Confession

This is a really, really odd couple of excerpts, and what's odder, they come right after each other. The first excerpt is the book's prologue, which is told mostly in third person. It gives the impression of being taken from two related short stories.

The second excerpt is the first chapter, which mostly consists of one incredibly long run-on sentence. Russians love run-on sentences and their language leans toward them, but as I told Joy -- if Faulkner had been born Russian, he'd still be saying, "This is one really long sentence!" I don't always have a lot of patience for experimental prose, but if the experiments work, I'm all for 'em. I think you'll enjoy it, too.

On to the cover blurb.

The Green Flame's Confession
by Natalia Mazova, 2002

She was born in the world which those who live in other Essences call Quiet Dock -- first with slight disdain, then with a hint of envy. Already for eighty years this world, which moves unhurriedly along the road of technological progress, has not known war; but its inhabitants had to pay a high price for this, introducing severe limits on birth rates.

Girls not passing the test will never know the joy of motherhood; young people turn away from them, for "Who needs a woman incapable of giving children life?" So when the sickly girl Lind, who had practically no chance to be chosen, discovered in herself the gifts of the Motalish, the wanderers among Essence worlds, she left her native Rugiland with no particular regret.

"Natalia Mazova's prose belongs to a rare variety of the fantastic -- esoteric fantasy. The wanderings of the Motalish and magichki on exotic worlds, her adventures and battles, conceal beneath them a profound level of meaning. This level is saturated with signs and symbols. Before anything else, it pays for the reader to get acclimated. Then he will succeed in catching the whisper of the elements, reading the inscriptions left on the fabric of the universe by circles of power and encoded by Natalia Mazova."

--- Dmitri Volodikhin


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