Re Jo Walton: Tooth and Claw

Ven vendersleighc at
Sun Jan 30 22:04:23 EST 2005

Paul's best recomendation for 2004 was 'The
King's Peace' (inc. 'The King's Name') by Jo 
Walton. Have you read The Prize in the Game yet
Paul. It's a sort of prequel to the
aforementioned and to my mind shows that she
continues to improve as a writer, it's a tighter,
more mature, simply more elegant piece.

Paul then said he was eagerly anticipating Tooth
and Claw (among others). Paul and all my Fellow
DWJ Listers this is a Wicked, Wicked book. I had
to repeat "Wicked" to allow for both senses of
the word. While reading this work of mischief I
found myself muttering things like "how DARE
she!" "this is Horrible!" and so on in tones of
scandalised glee. In the preface Ms Walton tells
us that having grown up on a diet of Victorian
novels and sf and fantasy, inter alia, she
somehow decided to combine the two. Hence Tooth
and Claw, in which she has considered what  the
conventions of the Victorian sentimental novel
would become if they were matters of biological
neccessity, and all the characters were dragons.
Well, just as occured in Victorain society for
real, some of the results are pure Evil.

I will leave you all to read the book to find out
what I am blathering about. There's a great deal;
of pleasure in working out just what JW has done,
and how and why. It's sheer brilliance and made
me laugh a lot. When they say on the back cover
that "you have never read anything like it." for
once they are right. It should appeal to both
lovers and haters of Victorian sentimental
novels. There's a deal of Trollope, some Austen,
probably Gaskell and one very Heyeresque scene.
And they are all dragons.

NB I have already lent my copy out so all quotes
from JW and the cover are approximate.




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