Interestingly Various

by wjw on January 26, 2021


Mr. Russell Letson has reviewed The Best of Walter Jon Williams.

I’m a terribly modest fellow, as I’m sure you know, so I won’t quote the whole review, but only a couple salient excerpts.

Exactly 30 years ago, this column’s lede was “Walter Jon Williams is an interest­ingly various writer….” The intervening decades have given me no reason to alter that opinion, variations on which I have been re­peating just about every time I write about a Williams title. So why should I break the chain now? . . . 

I come away from this collection admiring not only Williams’s flexibility as a master of traditions and conventions and tropes, but also the way that these stories are not merely exercises or japes (though “The Golden Age” and “Prayers on the Wind” are plenty playful). When Williams takes on a genre, he also takes on the issues and tensions and themes such con­structs are meant to address. This is where craft crosses the fuzzy borderline and becomes art.

pecooper January 27, 2021 at 11:35 am

I guess congratulations are in order for crossing that fuzzy border. And even more congratulations for doing it after the inauguration and executive orders. There is a good chance you will make it without being apprehended by brown-shirt wearing ICE agents and being thrown into a camp to rot while waiting to be batch-processed by an overworked immigration court. Bravo!

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