Great Write Sharks

The Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall

Burt reminded me that posts have been lacking lately...and so I am posting a sketch to save Burt from eating sad ham.

The Raw Shark Texts is an extremely interestingly covered book I picked up off the 75% off rack whilst waiting to check out at Barnes & Noble. I don't even remember the other book I was buying, but this one was a very very nice surprise. People are a little mixed on the ending (which I won't spoil), but I felt quiet satisfied when I ran out of pages to place a bookmark in. The story centers on Eric Sanderson, who has no idea who he is.

The only clues he can trust (or can he?) were left to him by himself before he forgot who he was. The clues are not straightforward, however, and are loaded with secret messages and puzzles. As if that's not bad enough, he's being chased by a linguistic entitity on a mission to devour him. Namely, a huge conceptual shark called the Ludovician that swims, in a literal sense, in the figurative flow of language in information. For example, as you're reading the words I've written, information is flowing from your screen to your head, so we're creating an informational flow! Once the Ludovician traces Eric's scent on a flow of information, he can find Eric and quite literally devour him as an actual shark would with the teeth and the ripping skin and bones, etc.

Eric's goal is to avoid the Ludovician until he can destroy it, if he can figure out how to destroy it. He has to change his identity to hide his scent, surround himself with books and letters to throw the shark off (too many linguistic flows make the "water" choppy to navigate), and rely on people he maybe shouldn't trust. As one quick review put it:
"Hunting the answers as he is hunted, Eric is led on a journey that will either bring the First Eric Sanderson back to life or destroy both Eric Sandersons forever."

So the sketch is showing how the Ludovician notes the scent of Eric's thoughts as he reads the letter he wrote to himself at the beginning of the story. IE, when he first wrote the letter the Ludovician was present, so it traces his "scent" on the letter from his past self into the head of his present self as he reads it. If that makes any sense.


Burt said...

lol @ pun title AND sad ham

MamaLern said...

Haha. A-thankyou.

Tim said...