Tag Archives: carl zimmer

Books: Sensation by Nick Mamatas

Oh, the last book I read by Nick Mamatas was so good that I ended my review with a threat and a warning. Time to break out the woodchipper, because his new book, Sensation, is very different and very good.

This time, picture Carl Zimmer (he of Parasite Rex fame) and Jared Diamond getting drunk and writing a comic adventure about hyperintelligent spiders shaping humanity’s history in a long war against the parasitic wasps that lay eggs in them ( the spiders ). Oh yes, please, more. Told from the perspective of the spiders, centered around a marriage that collapses as part of the fray, it’s funny and wildly predictive. See, Julia leaves Ray when a species of wasp lays eggs in her that free her of all her inhibitions and compassion. She joyfully murders and causes havoc while Ray obsesses about her, wondering why his loving wife suddenly left.  Then he sees her in a supermarket, follows her, and begins to piece things together.  He shouldn’t have.

Internet shutdowns? Global anonymous protest movements? People who live in Brooklyn not being entirely clear on their ethos or objectives, but being very very cool? All there. I leave you with a video about a parasitic wasp that zombifies cockroaches because you probably think this premise is more unlikely than it is.