Gun, with occasional music Paperback
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Top Customer Reviews
Lethem's future is one in which I would not want to visit, let alone live in. For private investigator Conrad Metcalf, this nightmare is the only world he knows. What's so bad about this author's horrific visions? In the world of tomorrow, society is quite different from the world we know. For one thing, animals (rabbits, sheep, kangaroos, and cats) now walk upright, speak, commit crimes, and work. It's all a part of what authorities call "evolving," and it isn't just about the animals. Human infants take part in the hijinks as well, since society decided that it takes too long for people to grow up. The result is "babyheads," infants that speak, smoke, and drink thanks to massive infusions of growth hormones. As if that's not enough to cause you screaming fits, and apparently many of the people in this brave new world feel like screaming about it, the authorities provide "make," a drug used to modify behavior.Read more ›
Lethem clearly is channeling Chandler here, and, for that, he deserves much praise, as does much of the novel. Despite whether or not the reader can believe in a world where genetically-enhanced talking kangaroos can tote .45s for nefarious purposes, the power of tale is so overwhelmingly intoxicating that the reader has no choice to accept the peoples, places, and things as entirely plausible. In short, it fits in its own bizarre way, and Metcalf -- as the protagonist -- does his best, despite his own addictions, to keep himself and the plot moving at a pace where the reader has to keep up.
I did find a few sections of the book to be weighted down a bit by some obtuse humor, but, all-in-all, GUN, WITH OCCASIONAL MUSIC (hang on until the end to understand what the title means) was nonetheless fascinating.
The murder that Conrad attempts to solve is fairly straightforward, although Lethem does throw in a few really nice twists that fit with his world and the characters.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
Lethem pulls off what should be the impossible: hard-boiled detective fiction in a future world of animals walking and talking, babies mutated into 'babyheads', state-sponsored... Read morePublished on Jan. 22 2014 by Amazon Customer
The novelty of the premise and the excellent writing got me hooked (lol) right from the start. I have never read this author before but would definitely again. Read morePublished on Sept. 29 2013 by Bootsy Bass
My favourite of Lethem! This book is so out there, but in the best possible way. Lethem's imagination is fantastic, and I love the way he writes. Read morePublished on June 16 2013 by LauraSpaz
"Gun, with Occasional Music" is confusing at times; I never did figure out the "babyhead" thing. For the sin of obtuseness, "Gun" is docked one star. Read morePublished on July 22 2003 by Nels Lindberg
I'm reading this one right now, and I think I'm going to just love it. It's a witty sci-fi/mystery. Lethem's books are always interesting and usually funny, and I seem to be able... Read morePublished on Nov. 25 2002
How do you make an hard boiled Sci-fi story?Take a cynical but really golden-hearted (proportions of cynicism and goodness may vary) private-eye in less tan friendly terms whit the... Read morePublished on Sept. 8 2002 by Ventura Angelo
Let me say that this is a fantastic novel, one of the most imaginative that I've read in some time. Its so good that anyone liking the following criteria should like this... Read morePublished on Sept. 1 2002 by Eric Vondy
I swear to dogs that Jonathan Lethem MUST stare in the mirror at least once a day and scream "WOW!"
Thats what I say everytime I fall into one of his strangely psychotic yet... Read more