Monday, 24 October 2005

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Spending Saturday Afternoon Being Stoned By Adam Roberts Went to the library today to pay off fines and pick up interlibrary loans. While waiting for the former to process so that the lady at the latter's desk could perform her assigned task without frowning and huffing and asking whether it would be too much trouble to fill out this seventy-four page affidavit proving that I had already deposited all arms and legs owed the University of California Regents—while avoiding that, I wandered the third floor in search of a rare (during midterm week) empty cubicle. Finally I found one inhabited by a stack of books but sans any other scholarly elluvia, so I sat down to read some George Eliot. Two minutes passed before the shame of having possibly stolen some bathroom-bound undergraduate's cubicle drove me to look at the stack of books before me. A couple of Twayne's Guides to Sounding Like You've Actually the Read the Book and Mastered the Criticism, a copy of China Mieville's Looking for Jake and a copy of Adam Robert's Stone. I looked at that one suspiciously. "Wait a minute," I thought to myself, "I know an Adam Roberts who writes science fiction novels." So I started reading it. Then I stopped... ...after an abosrbing hour. I put the book down, rescued my hostages from the untroubled inter-library loan lady and walked home. Then I ordered Stone. (Yes, I know, dissertation. And I'm on it. But Stone has passages in desperate need of underlining and, good egg that I am, I can't deface library property.) Plus, his new novel is a tribute to Y.T. called Land of the Headless. I expect those royalty checks to start streaming in any month now.

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