Ian McDonald has won a number of prestigious awards and nominations for his science fiction. Most recently these have included the British Science Fiction Association award and nominations for the Arthur C. Clarke Award and the British Fantasy Society award for his novel, River of Gods. River of Gods gives India a powerful postcyberpunk treatment. In McDonald’s 2047 India, we find genetically engineered children as a new caste. Adults are surgically transformed into a third, neutral, gender. The Ganges is running dry, sparking a water war.

Next up for McDonald: Brazil.

Publishers Weekly writes about McDonald’s most recent novel, Brasyl, published last month:

British author McDonald’s outstanding SF novel channels the vitality of South America’s largest country into an edgy, post-cyberpunk free-for-all. McDonald sets up three separate characters in different eras—a cynical contemporary reality-TV producer, a near-future bisexual entrepreneur and a tormented 18th-century Jesuit agent. He then slams them together with the revelation that their worlds are strands of an immense quantum multiverse, and each of them is threatened by the Order, a vast conspiracy devoted to maintaining the status quo until the end of time. As McDonald weaves together the separate narrative threads, each character must choose between isolation or cooperation, and also between accepting things as they are or taking desperate action to make changes possible. River of Gods, set in near-future India, established McDonald as a leading writer of intelligent, multicultural SF, and here he captures Latin America’s mingled despair and hope. Chaotic, heartbreaking and joyous, this must-read teeters on the edge of melodrama, but somehow keeps its precarious balance.

This will be my first book by Ian McDonald. I am excited to get started.

Advertisements