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Julian Comstock: A Story of 22nd Century America (2009)

af Robert Charles Wilson

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MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
7592929,797 (3.6)41
Fiction. Science Fiction. HTML:

In the reign of President Deklan Comstock, a reborn United States is struggling back to prosperity. Over a century after the Efflorescence of Oil, after the Fall of the Cities, after the False Tribulation, after the days of the Pious Presidents, the sixty stars and thirteen stripes wave from the plains of Athabaska to the national capital in New York. In Colorado Springs, the Dominion sees to the nation's spiritual needs. In Labrador, the Army wages war on the Dutch. America, unified, is rising once again.
Then out of Labrador come tales of the war hero "Captain Commongold." The masses follow his adventures in the popular press. The Army adores him. The President is...troubled. Especially when the dashing Captain turns out to be his nephew Julian, son of the President's late brother Bryce??a popular general who challenged the President's power, and paid the ultimate price.
As Julian ascends to the pinnacle of power, his admiration for the works of the Secular Ancients sets him at fatal odds with the Dominion. Treachery and intrigue will dog him as he closes in on the accomplishment of his lifelong ambition: to make a film about the life of Charles Darwin.… (mere)

  1. 00
    Davy af Edgar Pangborn (aulsmith)
    aulsmith: Wilson makes several homages to Davy, presumably because he was inspired by it to write his novel
  2. 12
    The Handmaid's Tale af Margaret Atwood (AlanPoulter)
    AlanPoulter: Two novels on repressive near futures in a decayed North America.
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» Se også 41 omtaler

Viser 1-5 af 28 (næste | vis alle)
I wanted to like this book a lot more than I did. It had all the makings of a fantastic book: first, it took place in a post-apocalyptic world that had devolved back to a colonial-style way of life. Second, there were political and military machinations galore. But for some reason, I was never completely pulled into the story or the world. Maybe it was the narrator, naive to the point of obtuseness. Maybe it was that I never connected with Julian as much of a sympathetic character, or even an interesting character at that. The world building was fantastic; the story was all right; the characterization just fell flat with me. ( )
  wisemetis | Jan 14, 2023 |
I'll classify this one as Steampunk only because of the feel, and not because of the date. Good story, well crafted with great flow. I especially liked how the narrator, beautiful unreliable narrator, was so focused upon snakes throughout the tale.

Reasoning: ancient peoples always regarded the snake as a wise, immortal creature because it not only renewed itself by losing its skin, but also because it knew how to listen. Comstock himself was a philosopher and wanted nothing more than to think about wisdom and science in a bible-thumping, bass-ackwards world, and have a little fun with the boys while he was at it. When the narrator decided that he'd drop his friend's love of philosophy, he fell back on the old practice of bashing the snake's head in. A beautiful setup in the story.
Of course, none of that had any real plot-value to spoil, so I hope you forgive me my enjoyment on this one. :)

The rise and fall of Julian the Apostate, written fresh for the new, post-modern fall of a world. (Well, at least fallen to the state of a steampunk society, anyway.) I always did like Julian Caesar best out of all of the Caesars. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
Great idea. Great discourse on religion. However, I found most characters not very well developed and not very believable. ( )
  Firewild | Jan 3, 2019 |
It didn't take long to speed through Julian Comstock, for all its 700 or so pages, because it's grand storytelling. What came to mind as I finished it were the critics who saw Star Wars as a western set in space. That is, this story could have successfully been told of any age or society in which an entrenched hierarchy breeds young heroes who successfully challenge it. Like, uh, Star Wars. For me the enjoyment wasn't so much in the world-building, which is fairly slight, but in the characters who inhabit it, especially the young narrator and his best friend Julian, the aristocrat who challenges his evil uncle for leadership. I loved the narrator, and it's more his story than Julian's, but centering it on Julian makes a believable hook for hanging a tale meant for people who lived at that time. So, another winner from Robert Charles Wilson. ( )
  auntmarge64 | Oct 2, 2017 |
Amazing period piece (19th Century as 22nd, America) and 1st person bildungsroman featuring the once and future President, Julian Comstock (Conqueror). Lots of beautiful, playful language that illustrates the landscape with vigor and precision. Fizzled a bit at the end, but that may just be my hero-worship bias rearing its' ugly head (it is a Tragedy, unfortunately). I came to love the characters within. ( )
  apomonis | Jun 2, 2016 |
Viser 1-5 af 28 (næste | vis alle)
its sense of adventure, the unlikely accomplishments of its hero, and a cast of colorful characters make it the twenty-second century equivalent of what once would have been called a ripping good yarn.
tilføjet af sdobie | RedigerSF Site, Greg L. Johnson (Feb 1, 2010)
 
JULIAN COMSTOCK is a buffet of cool delights: The plot is epic; its steampunky Wild West future evokes the Bruce Campbell series THE ADVENTURES OF BRISCO COUNTY JR.; the characters are unique takes on classic archetypes; and the prose sounds authentically vintage without being hard to understand or difficult to read.
tilføjet af sdobie | RedigerBookgasm, Ryun Patterson (Sep 28, 2009)
 
Politically astute, romantic, philosophical, compassionate and often uproariously funny, Julian Comstock may be Wilson's best book yet -- and that's saying a lot of a man who has already collected a shelf full of awards for books like Spin.
tilføjet af lampbane | RedigerBoing Boing, Cory Doctorow (Jun 24, 2009)
 
Julian Comstock reminds us that inevitably, every generation imperfectly remembers the past. The best we can hope for is that the future will remember the constructive ideas we've left behind rather than the unhelpful ones. This novel is about why the struggle over cultural memory may be the most important of all.
tilføjet af PhoenixTerran | Redigerio9, Annalee Newitz (May 29, 2009)
 

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We read the past by the list of the present, and the forms vary as the shadows fall, or as the point of vision alters.—James Anthony Froude.

Look not for roses in Attalus his garden, or wholesome flowers in a venomous plantation. And since there is scarce anyone bad , but some others are the worse for him, tempt not contagion by proximity, and hazard not thyself in the shadow of corruption.—Sir Thomas Browne
Crowns, generally speaking, have thorns.—Arthur E. Hertzler
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To Mr. William Taylor Adams of Massachusetts, who might not have approved of it, this book is nevertheless respectfully and gratefully dedicated.
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I mean to set down here the story of the life and adventures of Julian Comstock, better known as Julian the Agnostic or (after his uncle) Julian Conqueror.
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Fiction. Science Fiction. HTML:

In the reign of President Deklan Comstock, a reborn United States is struggling back to prosperity. Over a century after the Efflorescence of Oil, after the Fall of the Cities, after the False Tribulation, after the days of the Pious Presidents, the sixty stars and thirteen stripes wave from the plains of Athabaska to the national capital in New York. In Colorado Springs, the Dominion sees to the nation's spiritual needs. In Labrador, the Army wages war on the Dutch. America, unified, is rising once again.
Then out of Labrador come tales of the war hero "Captain Commongold." The masses follow his adventures in the popular press. The Army adores him. The President is...troubled. Especially when the dashing Captain turns out to be his nephew Julian, son of the President's late brother Bryce??a popular general who challenged the President's power, and paid the ultimate price.
As Julian ascends to the pinnacle of power, his admiration for the works of the Secular Ancients sets him at fatal odds with the Dominion. Treachery and intrigue will dog him as he closes in on the accomplishment of his lifelong ambition: to make a film about the life of Charles Darwin.

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