Paolo Bacigalupi's stories echo and build upon the work of writers who came before him, and in some ways they feel like an extension of the better ecological science fiction of the 1970s; the imagined ecocatastrophes of that era lost some of their power through reiteration, and growing interest in genetic engineering and nanotechnology led to many stories of technological triumph over the nonhuman world (and nonhuman worlds). In Bacigalupi's futures, whatever solution technology offers creates its own problems, and technological innovation is often a tool of the rich to shore up their defenses against the huddled masses yearning to breathe.Readers unfamiliar with Paolo's work can find plenty of samples at his website, and the story I singled out for particular praise, "Yellow Card Man", is still, for the moment, available at the Asimov's website. I also interviewed Paolo back in 2004 (for more recent interviews, see the links here).
02 June 2008
Bacigalupi in Quarterly Conversation
The summer issue of The Quarterly Conversation is now online, and in addition to all sorts of interesting things, it includes a lengthy review I wrote of Paolo Bacigalupi's Pump Six. It began as a simple, straightforward review, but 3,000 words later it turned into something a bit more than that...