David Gerrold:A Season For Slaughter

You know, things seems to get worse with each book in the Chtorr series.

In each book so far, they've discovered new depths to the Chtorran infestation. It's mind-boggling, the scope of this thing...

Some things don't change much, though. James McCarthy is still as pigheaded and stubborn as ever. The Mode Training he took in the last book seems to have heightened it, if anything. He spends the bulk of this book making enemies, and then regretting it later.

The book tends to switch back and forth between McCarthy-making-enemies and McCarthy-discovering-the-new-depths-of-the-Chtorran-infestation. Between the two, things go from bad to worse(apart from a romantic interlude in the middle, where he solemnizes his relationship with General Elizabeth "Lizard" Tirelli). The result is sometimes painful to read...but despite everything, you still sympathize with McCarthy, and his desire to throw politics aside and just get down to fighting the Chtorrans.

Gerrold has this annoying habit, however, of going into long digressions, about new technology and how it has affected life, or did before the Chtorr arrived. Amusing though these side-trips may be, they slow down the story, and would almost be better told "straight" in another format--released as short story rather than stuck haphazardly into novel. I mean, would James McCarthy really go into great detail about these things in his own thoughts? Some incident from decades ago that is already part of their popular culture? If they weren't so much fun to read, I'd say get rid of them altogether--as it is, I just wish he'd put them someplace else. Appendices, perhaps.

But there's no question that I'm going to buy the next one. If only to see whether McCarthy's been busted down to Private yet.

Oh, an interesting note--many of the characters in this book were named for people who donated money to AIDS research for the privilege. All I can say is, I feel sorry for the real Randy Dannenfelser, or Robert Bellus.

%A Gerrold, David
%T A Season For Slaughter
%I Bantam Spectra
%C New York
%D Copyright 1992
%G ISBN 0-553-28976-4
%P 555 pp.
%S Chtorr
%V Book 4
%O Paperback, US$5.99, Can$6.99

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The Den of Ubiquity / Aaron V. Humphrey / alfvaen@gmail.com