Catherynne M. Valente's novel "Palimpsest" creates an altered state of being in the reader wherein pleasure and pain dance across a city that dissolves the very idea of utopia and gives birth to a monstrously real and wonderful well of experiences. The very notion that a work can tear itself up into subtle and stark minutiae and, from that, form such intricately woven and rapturous stories, like the palimpsest process, is truly remarkable.
Valente's innovation: the city, tales, lives, waters, ink and war of Palimpsest; to craft such an original vision through such formidably real, addictive, desiring and afflicted characters is utter genius. To gain entrance to the mystical city of Palimpsest, a place of dreams where colors, tastes and worlds merge brilliantly, is to pay a price. The initial cost of immigrating there is to have sex with someone who has been there. Ink tattoos a section of map that will forever mark the immigrant who desires, above all else, to get back to the contrasting hideously beautiful city that is Palimpsest.
Valente addresses many issues that are rank in the world, through this book, and the author asks an important question of all who read this: what price would you pay to achieve your deepest and darkest desire?
I have turned the tide and started on my journey. Words and Worlds hang in the balance and I am writing it all down before the RJ Tower! Read about my newest novel on CyberwarSeries.com