Tuesday, March 06, 2018

Five top SFF books set in the City of Light

E.J. Swift is a speculative fiction writer based in London. Her new novel is Paris Adrift.

One of her five best SFF books set in Paris, as shared at Tor.com:
Submission by Michel Houellebecq

Set in the spring of 2022, the novel centres on an election race between the Front National and the fictional Muslim Fraternity, led by grocer’s son and political moderate Mohammed Ben Abbes, and the resulting conversion of France to a Muslim state. What’s interesting about the book is the very credible depiction of political change, and the swiftness of the transformation. François is a protagonist typical of Houellebecq’s oeuvre: a middle-class academic who has lost interest in almost everything, with a nihilistic view of modern life, its obsession with consumerism and capitalism, and society devoid of faith. Even while observing the zeitgeist, “the widening gap, now a chasm, between the people and those who claimed to speak for them, the politicians and journalists, would necessarily lead to something violent and unpredictable,” the election outcome seems inconceivable to François, a man steeped in the constructs and conventions of western society—never mind the idea that he might turn out to be a beneficiary of the new system. It’s an engaging satire—just try to erase the sex scenes from your mind.
Read about another entry on the list.

Read Ray Taras's review of Submission.

--Marshal Zeringue