valley near West Clear CreekThis is a shot from last Sunday, when we were walking on the trail near West Clear Creek. Most of the country near the campsite looks kind of like this.

There’s really not a lot to say, though. Recently finished The Scar, by China Miéville. Yeah, I’d lent it to Nathan, he said he enjoyed it, I ended up reading it again. I think that English departments in most colleges would totally love this book if only it was not possible to classify it as “steampunk” or “weird science fiction”. The characters are compelling, there’s a fair amount of action, and there are a ton of things in the book that would consume plenty of class time and possibly even make students think.  What things do the Lovers tell us about power and obsession?  What is the significance of Bellis’s letter?  What could the avanc symbolize?

I don’t think that anyone in whatever passes for the literary establishment took any notice.  They probably saw the dust jacket, said, “Oh.  Steampunk science fiction. Bah!” and dismissed it. This definitely happens; the short story “St. Lucy’s Home for Girls Raised by Wolves” was a study in how authors have to say, “Hey!  Look at me!  I’m engaging in Serious Literary Subjects!  Even though I’m using sci-fi and fantasy tropes left and right!” to be heard.