cover image Conquistador of the Night Lands

Conquistador of the Night Lands

Robin Wyatt Dunn. John Ott, $7.50 e-book (278p) ISBN 978-1-940830-10-0

In this baffling far-future story, reality shifts before the eyes of multiple figures, including shape-changing siblings, a ship captain, and human-alien hybrids. Then Dunn (Julia, Skydaughter) breaks the fourth wall—and the story—in a disappointing re-examination of the plot and prose of earlier sections. What begins as a delightfully strange world spirals away as soon as the “Robin” referenced is revealed to be Dunn himself. He then discusses his writing with early SF author William Hope Hodgson, completely derailing the proceedings. Further intrusions follow from the grotesquely parodied Isaac Asimov, Philip K. Dick, and Samuel R. Delany. The early chapters’ wonderful use of language, Faulkner-style changing narrators, and discussion of the connection between language and myth are lost in a rising sea of overdone references that is best avoided. (Dec.)