Sniffen Packets

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Three Days from Never, by Tim Powers

Tim Powers is getting more complicated—not that I would complain. Here he does to Charlie Chaplain and Albert Einstein what Declare did to Kim Philby and T.E. Lawrence. The plot is harder to follow than that of Anubis Gates—in his medieval books, general, Hollywood-style knowledge of magical practice can ground and explain some of the convolutions. Even in Last Call, that’s so. But Three Days from Never has more in common with Earthquake Weather’s reliance on modern, chaos-style magic.

This book is not as good as Declare or Anubis Gates. I read it in two sittings, for example, whereas each of those kept me up all night. It’s still way, way better than most books I’ve read this year.

Books read this year: 36