Williams, Liz -- Worldsoul
An extravagant mess of a setting; the Library of Alexandria is stolen
by the Powers and set up in the middle of a world-spanning city
outside of time... or something. Story-pathways open into everywhere.
It's Pratchett's "L-Space" taken three-quarters seriously, with
cod-Miltonian angels and demons butting heads with djinn as Loki stirs
up trouble. At one point the White Witch shows up, or a close calque
of her, zipping along with a bag of kings' heads in the back of her
chariot. I loved that. I love a lot of the razzmatazz that goes on
here, but just as often it trips over its own feet. (If you put Loki
on-stage and he doesn't steal the entire show plus half the theater,
you're doing it wrong.)
The spark that infused the Detective Inspector Chen books is still
visible -- the niftily tangled magic/science worldview, some
fascinating scenes exploring the geography of the world's story-space.
("...Down past the Holdstockian layer...") However, the Chen series
was more tightly focussed; or at least, it built its foundation of
ancient-vs-future-China solidly before it started branching out into
other mythologies. This is... a mess, I'm afraid.
Books I have acquired recently
All the books I own