in the crime quarter

He worked out of a small office the only feature of which was the clarity and interest of the screen saver images. They were beachscapes exotic & hard to place, with a sharp, travelogue quality. He had the screen positioned so it was impossible to ignore these glimpses as they dissolved softly into one another; while to the client he presented the city as a surf of buildings & people & consumer goods. The motives that powered it were tidal. Unpredictable winds played against masses of water, currents too complex to understand. Crimes were whipped off the crest of events like spray. “A great wave,” he would explain, “composed of the billion actions of the very citizens it curls so threateningly above!” It was the perfected experience of art, he said, in the perfect space–art as an aspect of architectonic and thence, with perfect logic, of lifestyle. His clientele were not so sure. These carefully groomed & dressed art tourists would look across the desk at him with a kind of puzzled distaste, & wonder if they were in the process of making a mistake. They understood their own inauthenticity: they weren’t, at the outset anyway, so certain about his. The women had come for the sensorium porn. The men, though they would pretend to enjoy “seeing the world from a different point of view”, were only interested in donkey crime.

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Filed under crime, fantasy

6 responses to “in the crime quarter

  1. Which book should I start with?

  2. uzwi

    Hi carmenloofah. This is an out-take from Empty Space (published by Gollancz, July 19), which is the third book of the sequence that begins with with Light. So Light would be a good place to start if you liked this. But I also do other kinds of things, & to get a taste of them it would be better to start with The Course of the Heart or the short story collection Things That Never Happen.

  3. Loved the Gnostic theme to The Course Of The Heart but unwisely lent it to a friend… and had to buy another copy, which tends to happen with your books!

  4. donkey crime–I can’t wait!

  5. uzwi

    Hi Mia. Donkey crime is where it is, these days. You’re no one if you’re not doing donkey crime…