Surfing Samurai Robots October 12, 2011Posted by stuffilikenet in Books.
Surfing Samurai Robots is a delightful, reverent homage to the time-honored literary craft that is noir detective fiction, except for the surfing samurai robots, of course, and the alien Zoot who imagines himself to be a noir detective due to listening to radio broadcasts of the period from sixty light-years away (they must have really nice antennas there) and the surfers that Zoot finds himself in the company of attempting to solve mystery (not much of one, but oh, well) with the aid of hallucinogenic yogurt1. Zoot is not handicapped by his alien appearance, though very different-looking from humans, as the surfers note:
‘Dig that bitchen schnoz,’ one of them said. The rest laughed, but as far as I could tell, it was nervous laughter. It was just something to do until the shock went away.
I said, ‘I have to explain this all the time. I was born funny.’
‘You mean a birth defect?’ the Earthperson holding the sneeve [Frisbee] said.
Birth defect? It had a nice ring to it. I could use that phrase. ‘Yes,’ I said, ‘a birth defect.’
T’oomians are mostly nose. There are less attractive characters in the book2. Zoot finally acquires a fedora, a gat, a Chrysler, and Chandleresque patter:
Without looking at me, Whipper Will said, ‘Gotterdammerung. They’re a motorcycle-punk club that
likes to inspire terror in people on the beach.’
‘Not much of a challenge for them,’ I said. ‘Is it a job or a hobby?’
and a murder case3.
Unsurprisingly, there are sequels: Hawaiian UFO Aliens and Tubular Android Superheroes, which are on my “to read” stack, as soon as I finish Newton and the Counterfeiter, which is pretty engrossing just now.
1. A Bulwer-Lytton opening sentence if ever I wrote one.
2. Did I mention the gorillas in suits?
3. Not really, but I like writing stuff like that.