INTERZONE is splendid for the serious and generous review coverage it gives to science fiction books. It’s empowering.
Here are some highlights:
Ectopia sounded rich and edgy from its cover blurb alone, promising themes of gender, medicine and identity – topics I loved to see explored in speculative fiction. The book lived up to my expectations, with just a few minor caveats. Ectopia is a terrific novel with excellent characterisation, world-building, narration and dialogue. It’s also thematically strong, exploring the connections between binary concepts, including male versus female, gay versus straight, and soulful versus soulless. The result is a story of great depth, raising questions about who we are and how we define ourselves…
By far the best thing about the book is its narration. As with A Clockwork Orange and 1984, the world is built by language, meaning there is little cumbersome exposition or other authorial intrusions. Steven is a brilliant narrator with a thrilling tale to tell. His language sculpts this reality in a striking, penetrating way, often combining beautiful observations with cutting colloquial realism.