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Download Out of the Mouth of the Dragon epub

by Mark S. Geston

Download Out of the Mouth of the Dragon epub
ISBN: 071810952X
ISBN13: 978-0718109523
Category: Fantasy
Subcategory: Science Fiction
Author: Mark S. Geston
Language: English
Publisher: Michael Joseph; First Edition edition (1972)
Pages: 160 pages
ePUB size: 1837 kb
FB2 size: 1572 kb
Rating: 4.3
Votes: 947
Other Formats: txt doc lit azw

This book is without a doubt my favorite piece of science fiction literature. A hidden gem in the genre and some of Geston's finest writing.
Let me add another 5 stars for this astonishing & sadly neglected novel from 1969. The initial publication date is crucial to understanding its furious, deranged, yet strangely lyrical intensity, as the author was in college at the time, in the midst of the countercultural questioning of everything -- especially the insanity that was the Vietnam War. Moreover, his generation (which was mine as well) had grown up under the immense shadow of the atomic bomb; had actually practiced Duck & Cover drills as pre-teens; were primed for hideous visions of apocalypse in the next heartbeat.

And that's just what this novel delivers in a stream of fantastic, grotesquely ornate images & a truly hallucinatory prose style. Some have wished for a less sloppy, more tightly composed story; but in this case, I think cleaner, more structured writing would have lessened the novel's impact. The sense of both the universe & human sanity cracking at the seams, ready to shatter at any moment, only makes this seething furnace burn all the more hotly & insanely. Thus it truly captures the Zeitgeist of the times -- or at least the dark side of it that haunted so many of our nightmares: a future of endless war, its horrors burning through the flimsy, glossy facade of honor & glory & nobility like a dying white phosphorus sun.

Technically, this is science-fiction, informed by the then-current New Wave. As such, it draws just as much on the currents of existentialism, post-war modernism, and anti-literature prevalent at the time. Yet for all its roots in that time, it remains a timeless narrative, as we all may find ourselves face to face with that vast, titanic, destroying void of meaninglessness even now. Highly recommended!
Geston writes very little today, but the late 60's saw a brief efflorescence of his work. This book and its clumsier predecessor LORDS OF THE STARSHIP are set in approximately the same future history - one where humanity has retreated from the stars to a crippled Earth and now fights repeated apocalyptic battles, False Armageddons, in a futile attempt to end creation.
The brutality of this scenario is set off and framed by images of great sadness and beauty: angels scarred by napalm, dead prophets speaking with prosthetic voiceboxes, ancient machines of nearly sentient cunning, and a maddening not-quite-engagement with the authentic supernatural which reflects the existential torment of the prophets and pilgrims who move through this darkening world.
It's far from a perfect book, but it has an absolutely unique vision. Read at the right age, OUT OF THE MOUTH OF THE DRAGON will change your life
A very odd end of time novel about a young man seeking a meaning to life when the planet suggests there is none. Strange battles between high and low tech forces abound, as the world falls apart and humankind dwindles. There are a few mentions of females, but not a single line for a female character! Probably will never make the top 100 Sci-Fi/ Fantasy novels you must read, but I liked it. Most memorable ending.
Probably the best of Geston's short catalogue, Out Of The Mouth Of The Dragon details the story of a young man who ventures out into the wider world to join the final battle of armageddon.
The biggest hurdle readers face is the books ponderous, slogging opening. It should also be noted that this, like Geston's other novels, isn't exactly the tightest narative, although for me, the style imparts a welcome dream-like quality, though im sure others see it as a bit sloppy. With that said, once it starts moving along, Mouth of the Dragon is an experience like no other. Geston's hard-edged world is one of sorrowful beauty and moral ambiguity, and he does a great job of immersing you in his strange, melancholic vision of the future.
Reading this novel, it strikes me as a real shame that this book is probably the best of a writer who produced little, instead of a flawed early work of an author who went on to become a true master.
I read this book over 30 years ago, but it still haunts me. A unique, frightening and terminally sad vision of humanity's end.