Similarities

Just got back from a trip to Hawaii where I got quite a bit of reading and writing done.  Oddly enough, the last 3 books I’ve read bore some interesting similarities to Timely Persuasion.

Anathem by Neal Stephenson
Set in an alternate universe of the far future, the novel introduces the concept of the Hylaean Theoric World.  Without giving too much away, the HTW is essentially a group of other parallel worlds.  Within these worlds exist alternate versions of yourself, and certain people are able to subconsciously communicate with their parallel counterparts.  This is somewhat similar to the “message from your future self” time travel theory in TP.

Lowboy by John Wray
Another novel set in a not so distant future, this one’s similarity to TP is a bit more of a stretch.  The title character of Lowboy has an occasional tendency to speak in song lyrics.  Although it doesn’t approach the level of lyrical Tourette’s the narrator of Timely Persuasion has, discovering another literary lyric speaker was neat.

The Ghost In Love by Jonathan Carroll
My wife made me read this.  She had read it 3 times in a row and then read it a fourth over my shoulder.  And it really is that good.  But I’m going to stick with the theme of this post and only talk about similarities to TP…

Like the HTW in Anathem, The Ghost In Love comes a little closer to TP territory with a section where a character meets all of her past selves.  It both is and isn’t time travel, but I already think I’m giving too much away.  Just keep Timely Persuasion in mind when you read it and you’ll know what I mean.

There’s also a hilarious rant on Neil Young that had me laughing so hard I’m going to excerpt it here:

“[A] teenager angry at her parents threw open her bedroom window, turned her stereo speakers toward the street, and blasted Neil Young’s awful song “Heart of Gold” out into the unprepared ears of the world.  Even worse, precisely the part of the song where the harmonica solo comes in. … Any creature’s first orgasm introduces it to a new level of joy.  Neil Young’s harmonica solo that day had exactly the opposite effect.”

How awesome is that?

As I said in the earlier post on original ideas, the point of this post isn’t at all to say that I think these other books copied me.  It’s really just a fun coincidence that other authors explored similar themes or ideas in different ways.  Great minds, etc.

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