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It took me a little while to adjust to the format of Time Aerials, as I was expecting a contiguous novel where I needed to keep track of the characters. Once I accepted it as more of a collection of short stories, with a few connecting threads, I relaxed into it more. Actually, the jumpy format perfectly suits the subject matter, and the fractured version of time that Kightley presents.
Overall, the book is a very enjoyable read. And sprinkled here and there are snippets which I think are absolutely brilliant. It had me laughing hard in spots, admiring the author’s insight and creativity in others, and sometimes just appreciating a beautifully phrased sentence—quotes that would not look out of place amongst the great writers. It didn’t quite hold that level of enjoyment consistently, as some chapters and subplots didn’t interest me as much as others… but I don’t know if that’s a criticism as much as a testament to the book’s diversity of subject and genre. It’s a smorgasbord of science fiction, philosophy, humour, drama, and horror; and other readers might very well prefer the chapters that didn’t grab me as much.
If you’re looking for a leisurely and predictable read, with beginning, middle and end—the way we assume time flows—this book may not be for you. But if you’re up for a bumpy adventure, and open to something a bit different, I say get a copy now—this very minute!—before The Great Mind of Kightley’s imagination deems the book’s secrets too sensitive, and you forever miss your chance.
(4 stars) posted 13/4/2016
In these worlds, books change and stories mutate. And minds leak into time. The Extirpators hover, the Squamaflies swarm, and the girl in black knows more than she should. A novel about consciousness and death. And time-paradoxes and reality.
ISBN: 978-0-9943704-0-2 ePub edition
ISBN: 978-0-9943704-1-9 Kindle edition
First Published 22 June 2015, by Russell Kightley, Canberra
CREATING THE BOOK: I wrote it over about 18 months, mainly using the brilliant writing software SCRIVENER by Literature and Latte. This allowed for plenty of shuffling about, and ultimately a very easy export to an ePub file. I also used their Scapple software for mind-mapping and working out timelines and plots. It is difficult to keep the twisted histories and causal loops of a time-travel novel clear, and Scapple helped a lot. Another excellent tool was Aeon Timeline which I used to get dates and ages right. There were also plenty of hand-drawn diagrams using multi-coloured pens. Continuity editing (and a lot of advice) by Phill Berrie. Phill, and all the others who helped, are acknowledged in the book.
CREATING THE COVER: The neurons on the book cover were modelled in 3D-Coat and imported into Cheetah3D, my 3D companion for many years. This particular arrangement of the model is unique to this book. The cover was assembled in Affinity Designer and scaled in Pixelmator. Related pictures at scientific.pictures.
TRIVIA: The Numerology Machine chapter was based on my numerology calculator, although, of course, the fictional one is far more powerful, since it taps into the universe (well, a universe, anyway)… And my computer, powerful though it is, lacks some of the necessary circuitry…
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