I like science fiction, but I also like stories about people, and how they interact with each other, and this novel gave me both. The sci-fi lies in the idea that years from now people will use words that avoid labelling others according to whether they’re he or she, just as Ms avoids stating if a woman is married or not. That’s as it should be, so I was very much in sympathy with the author’s idea, but the complications that this lead to were amazing, and kept me up reading all night.
I liked the setting too. Somewhere hot and sunny in France, where a lot of teenagers and older people on holiday start competing with each other for a prize that isn’t worth much, but it is a prize, so they all chase it, getting into the holiday spirit. It’s amazing what people will do if it’s for a competition. At the same time of course they’re all getting romantic with each other, and then things get serious, because jealous people become involved, and so do religious people, who I hate. The funny thing is that though it’s not meant to be serious, there’s this serious streak running through it, like a taste that makes me think about things. I got this book after reading Worthington’s first, and I was surprised, because that’s historical fiction, and this is in the future, and the style is totally different.