« 10 Things I've Done You Probably Haven't | Main | The Problem With Parents »

February 19, 2005

Washington Post Review of OMW...

...Courtesy of Paul Di Fillipo. The review is halfway down the page. It's a good one, which is nice:

His speculative elements are top-notch. His combat scenes are blood-roiling. His dialogue is suitably snappy and profane. And the moral and philosophical issues he raises, while not as deeply plumbed as in Joe Haldeman's classic The Forever War (1975), still insert useful ethical burrs under the military saddle of the story.

What I found particularly amusing, given the brief discussion I gave it in a previous recent entry, is Di Fillipo addressing the question of John Perry's luck:

One seemingly inevitable tic of this archetype is that our hero ends up being uniquely valuable to the war effort, thanks to the strength of his character and the forces of chance. John Perry conforms to this pattern as well, as you know he will. Still, it's hard to complain about such predestination. The tale of a grunt who dies during the first engagement would be merely the stuff of journalism.

Ha! Yes, exactly. Also -- and not to be ignored -- I would imagine it would be far more difficult to sell a first novel (particularly in this genre) in which the hero was a bystander to history rather than in the thick of it. I think ten novels from now I might try that, though, and see what I can do with it.

As an aside, the very nice person who alerted me to the review suggested that I probably knew about it already. Despite my clear and obvious interest (read: obsession) in these reviews, it had in fact slipped past me. If you do see a review of the book somewhere, please feel free to send me a note about it. It will be most appreciated.

Posted by john at February 19, 2005 03:44 PM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry:


Chris Byrne | February 20, 2005 07:37 AM

Considering you've had such great exposure, I hope the second printing was significantly larger than the first.

You figure the PB for 2006?

John Scalzi | February 20, 2005 09:15 AM

Chris: The second printing will be about 2,500 copies (up from 1,500), so, no, it's not larger than the first. Tor is being reasonably prudent in its printing -- no matter how much good press I get I'm still a first time novelist in genre, so they don't want to overestimate and have a lot of hardbacks to remainder later.

My understanding is the paperback will be out about the same time the hardback was last year, and that "Ghost Brigades" will be out either at the same time or shortly thereafter.

The main advantage of the review quotes will be not for the hardback but for the paperback; it'll be nice to slap them on to the back cover. I can pretty much guarantee you that the first line of the Publishers Weekly review will be there, and I imagine they'll mine this Post review as well.

Chris Byrne | February 20, 2005 11:07 AM

Yeah, the only review that carries more weight than those would be NYT, and NYRB and how often do they review genre-fic.

Any author reviews lined up you can mention?

John Scalzi | February 20, 2005 11:14 AM

Not really. I generally only know about the reviews after the fact.

Post a comment.

Comments are moderated to stop spam; if your comment goes into moderation, it may take a couple of hours to be released. Please read this for my comment moderation policies.
Preview will not show paragraph breaks. Trust me, they're there.
The proprietor generally responds to commenters in kind. If you're polite, he'll be polite. If you're a jackass, he'll be a jackass. If you are ignorant, he may correct you.
When in doubt, read the comment thread rules.

Remember Me?

(you may use HTML tags for style)