The Courier's New Bicycle doc Ñ ebook read ¶ gwairsoft

Kim Westwood × The Courier's New Bicycle mobi

The Courier's New Bicycle doc Ñ ebook read ¶ gwairsoft É [Reading] ➸ The Courier's New Bicycle Author Kim Westwood – A beautifully written story of the near future and its murky underworld A beautifully written story of the near future and its murky underworld.A beautifully written s I'm conflicted over reviewing this book as there was a lot to love about it but overall it really didn't set my world on fire I wanted to like it than I did but that may be due to my tastes than any fault of the authorThe story is set in a dystopic future I love 'verses like this that are connected closely to our own but with some twist It's why i love Mira grant's Newsflesh series In Westwood's vision for the near future a vaccine for a bird flu has caused widespread infertility The instability arising from this has seen a rise in religious fundamentalism and a black market in fertility drugs Sal the courier of the title delivers these drugs around Melbourne The main plot involves a fight for turf amongst the hormone bootleggersThere's a great sense of place which as a Melburnian I particularly enjoyed Overall the world building is interesting if a bit heavy on some repetitive exposition Sal is a 'transgressive' someone who's gender expression is clearly beyond the binary One of my issues with the book is that we get told this all the time but the actual exploration or demonstration or Sal's gender is rather thin The plot moves along uite well although I would've liked of the sub plot relating to Sal's involvement with an animal rights group which rescues animals from hormone farms Sal only distributes synthetic hormones which had some great tension in itIt's worth a look if only because ueer dystopic fiction like this is rare enough I'd hope for a seuel though so it did make an impression

text È The Courier's New Bicycle × Kim Westwood

Tory of the near future The Courier’s New Bicycle is Kim Westwood’s second novel and its nice and compact at 327 pages Playing wonderfully to my own biases and beliefs Westwood has taken some of my dark fears and made a scary reality of themThe World The world of The Courier’s New Bicycle is a near future Melbourne Australia is in the midst of a fertility crises caused by a compromised H1N1 vaccine The population is largely infertile and while several fertility companies sprang up to deal with the crisis a swing in power to the religious right sees these companies outlawed The resultant Australian cultural landscape is a dominionist’s wet dreamWith power In the grip of religious fanatics anything outside of very hetero normative ideals of gender are held in contempt Hessian frocked prayer groups wander the streets laying on hands and Neighbourly Watch lurks like a synthesis between the Gestapo and a Christian version of the Mutaween Our Protagonist The Courier’s New Bicycle features a “gender transgressive” protagonist Salisbury Forth Sal has achieved a comfortable for Sal gender identity that sits between male and female Sal is a courier for an ethical hormone supplier and is good at the job genetically gifted with a body for it Sal becomes a reluctant detective when unknown parties target the boss’ business When Sal’s friend Albee is injected with kit laced with pesticides the business war becomes personal Is it a dystopia? I’m not sure I find it an all too plausible reality one that only reuires a few changes to get to it from present day Australia Westwood has done an excellent job of extending current circumstances political social environmental and religious She tweaks recognisable institutions and extrapolates current Australian culture with skillThe conservative party both religiously and politically Nation First is eerily close to a combination of Family First and One Nation The contempt in which “gender transgessives” are held is not too different from conservative values held by the majority of the Australian population – only in The Courier’s New Bicycle hatred of “The Other” is given the imprimatur of both state and religionOn Gender The novel has an androgynous protagonist and is at least in part an exploration of the life and experiences of ‘The Other’ Whether ‘The Other’ be the transgendered the animal activist the immigrant or the socially undesirable street racers Now I don’t know if it’s the fact that I have been fortunate enough to listen to uality gender discussions and that I am comfortable in my gendersexuality but I didn’t find that exploration at all uncomfortable or confronting The treatment of said characters by the over zealous religious society inflamed my internal sense of social justice but the treatment itself is sadly all too close to what ‘The Other’ experience in the here and now For a reader who has lived a very sheltered life their response will no doubt be differentFor me I am just happy to have a cracking good story whose protagonist and supporting characters are drawn from genderueer and other diverse communitiesWhat impressed me There’s a tangibility to Westwood’s world building I don’t know Melbourne all that well but it feels to me that she’s captured the essence of the city and then cloaked it in this oppressive tension The spectre of Neighbourly Watch always in the background and the fact that Sal’s entire life is pretty much illegalHonestly The Courier’s New Bicycle is a great read an Australian speculative fiction novel with elements of crime drama thrown in When people think speculative fiction is just shooting rockets at Jupiter or dog fights in space press this into their handA beautiful sketch of darkly shaded future that I hope never comes to pass

book The Courier's New Bicycle

The Courier's New BicycleAnd its murky underwor I’d heard a lot about this book and how much people had enjoyed it but not specifically what it was about so I headed into the story of Salisbury Forth without a lot of background knowledge I found myself in a post pandemic Melbourne where a side effect of a vaccine – sterility – has led to an uprising of the overly and outwardly pious who have banned artificial hormones and labelled those who don’t fit into neat little packages as ‘transgressors’ Adding in rolling power outages and power rationing and a thriving hormone black market – and those who’d like to destroy it for their own means – and we’re in a world balancing between the familiar and nightmarishI was particularly struck by the world building in this book There’s a lot going on with the story touching on animal rights government control over medications government surveillance how different subcultures behave under different circumstances and an old fashioned mystery to solve but most of the time those elements are balanced well and the pieces fit together nicelyI was thinking that this is a story which works better if you have some knowledge of Melbourne because it relies on the Melbourne we know today to work it’s definitely not a story which would work in a Brisbane setting I read it while I was in Melbourne so I don’t know how much that influenced my reading of the story – especially as someone holidaying there rather than living there After a couple of brief discussions at Continuum I’ve been having a lot of thoughts about how known places work in fiction so this was book definitely fed and continued those thoughtsAs well as place thoughts I have thoughts about the medical aspects of the story The entire story balanced on the vaccine which made people sterile Most of our vaccination schedule in Australia happens in a child’s first 18 months so as a parents of a young child I hear a lot about vaccinations And inevitably you hear from anti vaccine people or people who are ‘concerned’ about vaccines and want to spread that fear to other parents – usually mothers So to have a government sponsored vaccine as the catalyst for the story left me with some heavy moments of ‘hmmm’ and wondering whether to let that impact my enjoyment of the story Ultimately I decided to file it in a ‘I don’t like that choice but it doesn’t impact the overall story’ pile but I am still thinking on itA world where artificial hormones are only available through secretive illegal means downright terrified me though I admit to a complicated history with artificial hormones since they helped me get my son but they also threatened my life at the same time I was under the supervision of a highly trained and experienced doctor who had to see me 2 3 times a week to ensure that I was safe I’m one of those people who just overreacts to artificial hormones so I can’t imagine absolutely needing them as many people do for many reasons but not having that constant care to ensure they’re as safe as possible Though I imagine there’s a lot of people around the world who are put in this situation for financialorganisationalsystemic reasons More things to think onDespite all the deep thinking thoughts the book inspired it didn’t read to me like a ‘thinking book’ It was a fast moving adventure of a story with a pretty large cast of characters who thankfully were well defined and differentiated from each other It provided one look at a possible future while inviting us to look at where we are and what we’re doing at the present time I thoroughly enjoyed it and I’m glad I was able to get my hands on itOriginally reviewed at Subversive Reader