Paul Di Filippo is many things: author of The Steampunk Trilogy, Ribofunk, and Lost Pages; a two-time Nebula Award finalist; a leading practitioner of alternate history; one of the original steampunks; one of the original cyberpunks; and a modern master of satire. The 10 stories in Fractal Paisleys blend alternate history, hard SF, modern fantasy, noir-detective fiction, satire, and pop culture to varying degrees, creating what the author calls "trailer park science fiction," in which regular folks (middle-, working-, and nonworking-class) encounter great and terrible powers and technologies of human, alien, futuristic, and fantastic origin.|
In "Do You Believe in Magic?", the ultimate self-absorbed, '60s-obsessed Baby Boomer emerges from his New York apartment for the first time in 20 years and finds himself an icon and a joke, and his city fire-bombed and theme-parked. In "Flying the Flannel," one of the few Di Filippo stories to feature a female protagonist, an unknown garage-rock group is part of a cosmic battle of the bands, in which the fate of Earth itself is at stake. In the terrifying "Earth Shoes" (possibly the most unusual Philip K. Dick-inspired story ever written), a quantum-uncertainty-infected mood ring gives successive characters the power to remake reality according to their own often unacknowledged and dangerous desires. The remaining stories are as inventive, witty, entertaining, and well-written, making this another high-caliber collection from Paul Di Filippo.
Source: Cynthia Ward, Amazon.com.