Monday, July 04, 2011

Reader's Diary #731- Hayden Trenholm: Like Monsters of the Deep

I met author Hayden Trenholm a couple of years ago and while we didn't agree on what the first English novel was, he seemed like a nice enough fellow, and I've been surprised ever since never to see his name come up on the end of year Canadian Book Challenge lists. I know his name isn't up there with Douglas Coupland or Robertson Davies, but surely someone must read him. Then, I guess I haven't either, even though I've had a copy of his Defining Diana sitting there on my shelf ever since, unread, so I can't say why.

Well, now after reading his short story "Like Monsters of the Deep," I know why I'm in no rush to read him. "Like Monsters of the Deep" is sci-fi, and pulpy sci-fi at that. I'm sure such a thing can be fun, but it's really not for me.

Set on a space ship transporting a cargo of sleeping humans to deep space, the crew finds itself terrorized by an unknown monster. I feel like I've been here before.

Keep three things in mind:
1. As I write this, it's 6:00 am in the morning and I've been reading for 18 hours straight. I'm somewhat tired and cranky.
2. I'm not a big fan of sci-fi. This surprises me somewhat as I would have been all over it as a kid. I'm not knocking sci-fi, but throw it out there because sci-fi fans might want to disregard my review. I say it feels formulaic, others might like the formula.
3. Not so much of a 3rd point as it is an addition to the 2nd. "Like Monsters of the Deep" has been published and was nominated for an Aurora Award. Clearly sci-fi fans appreciate it.

(Did you write a post for Short Story Monday? If so, please leave a link in the comments below.)


Julie @ Read Handed said...

Sorry you didn't enjoy the short story you read this week. Mine was really good - an interesting one by Nathaniel Hawthorne. If you get a chance, mine is here.

JoAnn said...

Sci-fi, especially the pulpy variety, is not for me either. I read Guy de Maupassant this week:

Anonymous said...

I'm not a sci-fi fan either really, but I've always wanted to read something by Ursula Le Guin.

You get three reviews in one this week (see, I was not just doing nothing when all of you readathoners were busy reading!):…-guidelines-of/

Loni said...

Maybe you should read Kindred or something else by Octavia Butler. Didn't you like Ponies? That' sci-fi, right?

I read a little political satire this week. Like you, outside my normal reading habits.

John Mutford said...

Loni: No I didn't read Ponies. I meant to. I bookmarked it. Then forgot it entirely. Thanks for the reminder.

Anonymous said...

And I saved the draft instead of publishing my post... It's up now!

Teddy Rose said...

It seem to me that monsters in space have been done to death. However, like you, who am I to say, I'm not a sci fan either.

I reviewed "A Box to Hide In":

Teddy Rose said...

Loni, I loved Ponies but I didn't view it as hard core sci fi like the story John just described.