Sep 13, Tom King rated it it was amazing. Snarky and fun Hapthorn is a well-drawn character. You don't always get that in SF. Hughes has a gift for creating plots in the sci-fi genre that please even hard sci-fi fans like me. Here's hoping we see more of Hapthorn. I discovered him through this Last Case published in Lightspeed magazine last year. These stories take place before the penultimate age of the universe while rationalism still reigns.
Looking forward to reading his first novel Majestrum. Nov 05, Bill Kebel rated it really liked it. Nov 09, Scot rated it liked it. These tales offer a blend of science fiction technology in a fantasy literature setting and play around with the concept that an eon when rationalism held sway is giving way to a new age of magic, so our sleuth must cope with the unexpected and adapt beyond his preferred logic to sometimes depend on intuition and thaumaturgy.
For supporting cast there is a marvelous technological sidekick that is sort of an omniscient ipad-of-the-future, a Watson if you will to this Holmes, that increasingly anthropomorphizes as the stories progress, at one point actually turning into a cute little varmint you can wear around your neck. Also, be ready for a daemon from an alternate universe that speaks to and through the protagonist—at first I thought it was his subconscious, but over time the split widens to definitely distinct characters.
Fundamentalist Christians and relatives of people with multiple personality disorders are thus not advised to read this book, as it is intended as good fun and they might find it troubling. Wordsmiths should get a kick out of these stories, trying to figure out old words re-appropriated or new words created, drawing on context and their own knowledge of the arcane.
Feb 04, Richard rated it it was amazing Shelves: fantasy , scifi. I was introduced to Matthew Hughes and his Archonate world through the novel he is currently serializing through Lightspeed Magazine. It tells 9 Tales about Old Earth's foremost freelance discriminator as he unravels cases, solves crimes, seeks out missing folks, and finds himself mixed up with the magical mysteries that are seeping into his I was introduced to Matthew Hughes and his Archonate world through the novel he is currently serializing through Lightspeed Magazine.
It tells 9 Tales about Old Earth's foremost freelance discriminator as he unravels cases, solves crimes, seeks out missing folks, and finds himself mixed up with the magical mysteries that are seeping into his logical world. I loved this collection of stories. Henghis himself is a fantastic character. Intelligent and witty, he reminds me of Sherlock Holmes, but would undoubtedly give Sherlock Holmes a run for his money. The Archonate setting itself is filled with a myriad of bizarre, detestable, or simply quirky characters.
Henghis Hapthorn | Awards | LibraryThing
Since Henghis is usually taking on contracts for the absurdly wealthy, he runs into a variety of dangerous nobility types that lead all sorts of hedonistic lives. As I understand it, the 9 tales encompass events that cover the entire timeline of the three Henghis Hapthorn novels. Having never read the books there were times when I was wondering if I shouldn't know more about a certain character or concept already.
I didn't find that to be an issue, though, and I'm excited to read the novels themselves. Overall, this is a top notch collection of stories and and it was a pleasure to read.
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Shelves: planetary-fantasy , sf. These nine stories are set in the very distant future. Earth has colonized thousands of worlds, but most of these stories are set on "Old Earth. He will not knowingly provide services that could result in criminal activity, but he's a bit flexible on that detail. He's on reasonably good terms with the police -- called the Bureau of Scrutiny -- but not exactly friendly terms. Hapth These nine stories are set in the very distant future.
Hapthorn is assisted by his integrator -- an artificial intelligence that combines the functions of personal computer, cell phone, digital assistant, etc. Integrators are made to order and nearly all citizens have one, assembled to order with customized blends of intelligence, curiosity, etc. By definition, they don't change or evolve -- but the stories suggest that they can.
Hapthorn also has a "colleague" who inhabits a universe of different dimensions, that he calls a "demon. The universe is poised to shift from a rational universe of logic and science to a universe based on the principles of magic. The writing is reminiscent of Jack Vance in both style and setting, but it seems very natural -- not forced. Basically, I really enjoyed these stories. This collection of short stories is good for light reading on vacation or as an introduction to the writer.
The world Hughes creates is certainly imaginative. At the core though, these are detective stories. Similar in flavor to Sherlock Holmes or Hercule Poirot. That underlying quality did not grab me and refuse to let go. While it wasn't perfect for me, I can appreciate the quality of the work. Sep 14, Grady McCallie rated it liked it.
Matthew Hughes' stories about a consulting detective 'discriminator' in a decadent far future have a distinct aesthetic. The stories establish early on that the rational underpinning of Henghis Hapthorn's universe is about to be replaced with magic, in Earth's 'penultimate' era, as one story puts it. In that sense, the stories feel set in a world one turn shy of Jack Vance's Dying Earth, or perhaps roughly in the same era as Michael Moorcock's Dancers at the End of Time.
Hughes' diction in the Matthew Hughes' stories about a consulting detective 'discriminator' in a decadent far future have a distinct aesthetic. Hughes' diction in these stories is flamboyantly Victorian - elliptical, slightly prudish, and full of long words built on Latin roots. The mysteries are more adventures than mysteries, and the stories are better read for the character and style than the plot. I enjoyed them. Mar 20, Jennifer rated it really liked it Shelves: reads , sci-fi-riffic , books-reviewed , e-book-for-free. Maybe it wasn't earth-shattering writing Henghis is a sleuth, a detective a discriminator, he is, arrogant, rational, and never wrong.
The writing has an old style charm, in a sci-fi high-tech future world. Or wanted a more Sci-fi version of the Sherlock Holmes series. All this AND it was free? Oh frabjous day! Apr 05, Jacqueline Diamond rated it it was amazing. Original, inventive and delightful. Hughes creates a complex universe filled with wildly amusing, well-developed characters and twists.
I'm hard to impress, but he did it! I recommend this for fun and mental stimulation. Dec 24, Stephanie rated it really liked it. Him use big words; me love. Seriously, I loved the intellectual tone of the writing. Please do write more Henghis novels! Dec 20, Kathi rated it really liked it Shelves: kindle , book-challenge. I had not heard of this author but apparently he is pretty popular in the UK. The stories are about Henghis who is a detective of sorts on an alien world. I enjoyed them and would probably read more of his books. Jun 14, Anne Turnley rated it it was amazing.
Henghis is an not someone whose company you would enjoy. He has too high an opinion of him self. His world, a sarcastic version of our own, abounds with individuals you will like even less. His adventures are quite interesting and left me craving more.
FORGOTTEN BOOKS #208: THE YELLOW CABOCHON & 9 TALES OF HENGHIS HAPTHORN By Matthew Hughes
Aug 17, Rif A. Saurous rated it really liked it. Perfectly serviceable Jack Vance style short stories. Featuring Henghis Hapthorn, a discriminator [futuristic private detective of sorts] in a world about to switch back from technology to magic. Droll and delightful if you like Vance.
Dec 04, Marilyn rated it liked it Shelves: abandoned. I only finished one story and decided this is not my type of book or writing. Also either my kindle app or the book itself got stuck on one page and it was difficult to continue reading. I had to go forward then back again to get the pages to move correctly. Apr 30, Bill Ramsell rated it liked it Shelves: fantasy. When I have a severe headache I find that re-reading a "light" book or an old favorite can be very comforting.