Hothouse Gods

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Leia mais Leia menos. Non-Stop S. The Crystal World English Edition. His Master's Voice English Edition. The City and the Stars Arthur C. Clarke Collection English Edition. Neil Gaiman is the bestselling author of Coraline and Stardust, both of which are major motion films. Compartilhe seus pensamentos com outros clientes. Compra verificada. This is a story about the end of the world and the many races of man. It is a story about the Sun nearing its final moments and the plants taking over the world. It is a story about the final days of the planet Earth. The story revolves around Gren and the last of his kind, small people who live in the trees.

They live in the middle, not too close to the ground and not to high up, near the tips. It is an adventure story, a story of exploration, as we follow Gren and his tribe as they try to survive. This is not hard science fiction and, in fact, I would not call this normal science fiction. Maybe science fantasy? Or just plain fantasy? The Moon is linked to the Earth by giant webs and one side of the planet is locked towards the Sun, so I guess it is fantasy.

I enjoyed the book but I just want to warn you, this is a weird novel about the end of life as we know it and don't know it. I first read this 25 years ago and just reread it.


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It hasn't lost any of its magic in all that time. Really free. He had one last chance to stretch his legs. Maturity and the obligations of adulthood would crush him by thirty. He had six more years to get it wrong, six more years to make something of his sorry self. No ties. No children. His initial realization that he and Danielle were doomed came after their visit to the clinic a year-and-a-half back.

More than once her younger brother, Rodney, an All-State power forward for the Cohen Green Hornets, had threatened to trash Jimmy if he continued seeing Danielle. I go me a brother lined up at Georgia Tech who wants a shot. No doubt about it, the guy had game. When Jimmy moved in with Danielle, he was certain the place would be firebombed. He never really understood what she saw in him. Maybe he was just some tool to get back at her parents, or a shocking ploy to spark the interest of another.


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  • Whatever the original intent, for either of them, they had both fallen into a perfect state of complacence, going through the motions of shared bills, boredom, and birth control. One last time, he reasoned, hoping to elevate the moment to a loftier height than it deserved. The entire time he was inside her, he had difficulty getting the promise of the bus ticket out of his mind. Danielle—legs scissored tightly around the small of his back—seemed lost in a parallel sexual domain. They were worlds apart, each masturbating the other, trying to influence the moment with an emotional synergy that simply was not there.

    Jimmy had to conjure images of other women to reach orgasm. He felt cheap doing this, heelish. There was no telling what Danielle was thinking. There was the Montel Williams poster hanging on the inside of the closet door to consider, however. The door seemed conveniently ajar whenever they had sex.


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    The image of Montel, suave and cool, arms folded, smiling confidently, really bugged Jimmy. You think too much, James Archibald Breedlove. Way too much. Danielle was in the shower when the phone rang. He lay in darkness, forearm draped across his brow, hoping the person would get the hint. Just leave him alone.

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    After the seventh ring, he sighed and jerked the receiver from its cradle. Go west, young man! Go west! Me and you. Bring it out to me. He was certain he could get a refund.

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    No fair warning. The time is now, J-Man. Right now. Retrieve my ride and get your sorry ass out here. Tell you all about it when you get here. Quick, take down this address. As in Pismo Beach, like in the Bugs Bunny cartoons? Trust me.

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    See you in a few days. You are good to go, right? Jimmy placed the receiver back in its cradle and stared at the hastily scrawled address. Jeff, his best friend from high school, had made good on his promise and actually called. Thursday night was chaotic. Jimmy was stuck on the graveyard shift because Carl ate some bad chili and was chained to a toilet. Sarah entered the motel office around half-past two to pay her rent. Jimmy sniffled and shrugged indifferently.

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    She was wearing a black tanktop, no discernible bra, and faded cutoff shorts. Her dark hair was pulled back, knotted in a tight bun. The majority of her makeup looked to have come off swiftly, perhaps during the cab ride home from the club. Jimmy had no doubt she was most beautiful creature on the entire planet. Can you believe it? What was that? Sarah twisted the bolt shut on the glass door and then retreated behind the counter, near the recently polished golden Buddha statue. The guy had been hit in the abdomen.

    He looked to be sixteen, seventeen at most. Receiver pressed to his ear, index finger crooked on the 9, Jimmy made eye contact with him. He could have been a high school band drum major, or a ROTC tough capable of a hundred, perfect form pushups in less than five minutes.

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    Not tonight, though. His eyes were bloodshot, petrified. Jimmy blinked and the kid was gone, stumbling across Tulane Avenue, a car honking at him as he crossed the road. Jimmy placed the receiver down and exhaled. Sarah moved over and touched his shoulder, causing him to jerk away. They just looked at one another and said nothing. A siren screamed to life and a vagrant began banging on the office door, demanding to know what time it was.

    Jeff had lived with her, on and off, since his mom took off to parts unknown with some drug dealing biker when Jimmy and Jeff were in their last year of high school. Flabby flesh hung from her arms. Battered, wide-brimmed hat eclipsed the noonday sun. Sunspots dotting the back of her neck, all stooped over, jabbing the earth with a rusty spade—he had no memory of her looking like this, as if she had aged twenty years since his last visit. She had lived in Jefferson a long time, at least as long as Jimmy had been alive.

    Her house was one of many that sprung up on reclaimed farmland after the Second World War, where present day South Claiborne gave way to Jefferson Highway. He had spent nights in her house, but had never really considered her age, or aging at all for that matter. Looking at her now made him feel uncomfortable, like he was treading on sacred ground, as if she were an attentive spirit that refused to let her precious plot of earth go untended.

    The bus had dropped him off a little over a half-mile away. With the heat, the walk seemed longer. He was trim, but sorely out of shape. Sedentary employment was a patient crippler. The car was parked out front, covered in dust. Perhaps Jimmy had expected too much. If the vintage Chevy drove, he would be happy. He approached the sagging fence separating the driveway from the back of the house and called out to the woman. It took three hollers before she finally responded. The woman was completely obsessed with her garden. He could have been anybody, some convict passing by, or a pitiless predator.

    The woman had soil to till. Nothing else mattered. The keys were in the box. Jimmy hoped there was gas in the tank. Floor it! Jimmy had never seen so much blood. Gramps lost his license a short while after that; lost all mobility, ultimately. Jimmy slid behind the wheel of the Impala. It got decent highway mileage, had beautiful guts and eight cylinders ready to roar. More power than Jimmy needed. While stoplights had a way of making all cars equal, out on the straightaways—the spillway and six-mile stretch leading to Slidell—there was more than ample opportunity to unleash the beast lurking beneath the hood, to take the machine beyond its breaking point.

    Recklessly melt its pistons to the core. Danielle had the day off. Right… Jimmy shook his head. He was counting on that money to help finance his trip.

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    The house was shaking on its foundation, the music throbbing monotonously. Jimmy ground his teeth together and gripped the steering wheel tightly. That was meant for me, pragmatically considered Jimmy.

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    He felt a funny tickle in his stomach. Somehow it all made sense. She was taking necessary precautions. It was so clear, wonderfully so. He shifted into drive and tore down Helena, barely acknowledging the stop sign as he pushed toward Carrolton. Veering onto the interstate, he headed toward the river, willfully taking a longer way around. He had stayed out of the nightlife since his late teens, when a would-be robber had shot a friend of his outside Jackson Square. That could have been me was the thought that resonated. His friend no longer lived in New Orleans, but the bullet was still in him, nestled in his lower back like some spiteful part of the city that refused to heal.

    The Quarter was great when Jimmy was younger, a wild place of strange faces and wide-eyed malcontents raging like crazy, burning with hyperactive excitement. Now he had fallen into comfortable state of poverty. Being perpetually broke provided an excuse to not venture beyond the safe comforts of home. Maybe things had gotten worse. Jeff always had a plan. He exited the interstate at Tchopitoulas and motored toward Canal.

    The lost bus ticket still frustrated him, though. The last time he had seen the ticket it had been on the nightstand, next to his side of the bed. It drove him crazy pondering the possibilities of what might have happened to it. Eighty-two bucks. Regardless, anything extra would help his cause. Gas alone was going to eat up most of his savings.

    To cut corners, he could sleep in the car, pull into rest areas along the way, use the facilities, and buy lots of cheap bread and generic brand peanut butter spread from local supermarkets. Hell, if Jeff hitched two thousand-odd miles, the least Jimmy could do was rough it in the Impala. No more excuses. Move or settle. That was one of the last things he had said to Jimmy before vanishing on the road to California. Jimmy had wanted to go with him at the time, but he had to report to the phone bank he was working at for five.

    He watched his closest friend disappear with a battered brown satchel slung over his shoulder and knew, indisputably, that it was the right idea. Just go. Embrace what you fear most.



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