Jim Bennett Reviews House of Solomon

Apes of Eden Book 4 The House of Solomon    Jon P Gunn

A Continuation: Please Read On

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This unusual, challenging work is the continuation of the previous book, The Apes of Eden. Be prepared for similarities and differences.

The same, amazing, iambic pentameter with rhyming couplets goes on. It is wonderful that this can be done while telling a story and not being intrusive.

The same alternate universe is alive around you, with the Apes being in a world of humans, mythical creatures, and difficulties, having left Eden in search of God.

The same questioning of values, and the same dashes of humour await you.

This book begins in a difficult desert situation, foreshadowing the dystopia to be revealed by the human guide encountered by scouts. The Sage and Poet are dispatched to a citadel on the basis that they can most easily be spared, should their reconnoitre fail.

They are met by a ‘human’ who conducts them on a tour of his super-human technological history. In an alternate past Earth, computers have been used, and other machines, to augment mankind. Here are some quotes from this weird, semi-substantial guide:

“You apes have let your sheer tenacity

engender cortical opacity.”

“The Central Data System, you’ll surmise,

provides my conversation. It replies

to all the questions you see fit to ask.

If asked why I do not assume this task,

the answer is that humans don’t demean

themselves with work done better by machine.”

“It culminates our most ambitious goal:

mechanical replacement for the soul.”

“An ape believes in anything he wants

by disregarding skeptics’ lies and taunts;

but humans need computers to reject

conclusions it decides are incorrect.”

In this ‘brave new world’ the humans don’t do anything: machines repair them, ask new questions, answer them, provide any information at any level of depth thought of, keep them alive. All instincts have been overcome. Nobody dies; nobody reproduces.

And, to these humans, clearly there is ‘no need of that hypothesis:’ the existence of God.

Thus, not with a bang but a whimper (to quote T. S. Eliot) the world, and this amazing work, both end.

Those familiar with my reviews will recognize what follows here. My personal guidelines, when doing an ‘official’ KBR review, are as follows: five stars means, roughly equal to best in genre. Rarely given. Four stars means, extremely good. Three stars means, definitely recommendable. I am a tough reviewer. This is an extension of the earlier Apes of Eden book. Unique, provocative, fun, and disturbing. An easy five-star decision, and exceptionally recommended.

Jim Bennett

Kindle Book Review Team member.

(Note: this reviewer received a free copy of this book for an independent review. He is not associated with the author or Amazon.)

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