The Collapsing Tor-pire
The Third Edition of The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction says: "If anyone stands at the core of the American science fiction tradition at the moment, it is Scalzi." That explains a great deal about the precipitous decline of American science fiction, does it not? The award-winning McRapey is, we are frequently informed, the very best that 29-time Best Publisher Tor Books and mainstream science fiction has to offer. That may be true. Nevertheless, from concept to cover, from title to text, THE CORRODING EMPIRE is a very clear and public demonstration that the Castalia House team can do what they do, and do it better, even as an in-house joke in our copious spare time.
After all, what would be more amusing than for THE CORRODING EMPIRE to outsell and outrank The Collapsing Empire? [It already has, Supreme Dark Overlord.] This isn't a lame Bored of the Rings-style parody, it is, quite to the contrary, a legitimate Foundation-style novel that effectively demonstrates how hapless Tor's latest imitative mediocrity is by comparison.
It's not like their authors don't have day jobs, after all.
Even the name of the author involved is intended to be humourous. "Johan Kalsi"? As in, J-K? Hard to get much more meta than that, really.
It amuses me no end to see that, as of today, the Amazon pre-order sales rank for this parody book is now ranked at:
- #13 in Books > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Galactic Empire
- #15 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Galactic Empire
- #28 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Space Opera
- #66 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Military
- #68 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Space Opera
- #77 in Books > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Science Fiction > Military
Paging John Scalzi... paging John Scalzi... please report immediately for treatment to your nearest burn unit...
And yes, in case you're wondering- of course I pre-ordered The Corroding Empire. Unlike their competitors at Tor Books, Castalia House actually produces good work that is highly readable and entertaining instead of being one long and painful snark-filled SocJus wankfest.
I heartily recommend that you do the same. I would love to see Macmillan (Tor's parent company) explain away this particular debacle once they see that a clear parody, written in a hurry and on a shoestring budget, is spanking the shit out of their Chosen One.