“For thirty years, Miller had worked security. Violence and death were familiar companions to him. Men, women. Animals. Kids. Once he’d held a woman’s hand while she bled to death. He’d killed two people, could still see them die if he closed his eyes and thought about it. If anyone had asked him, he’d have said there wasn’t much left that would shake him. But he’d never watched a war start before.”
Leviathan Wakes is the first book in a series by James S. A. Corey. I first heard about this book by watching a show called The Expanse, which was based off this series. I made it through a few episodes and then decided I would like to read the books before continuing the show.
Leviathan Wakes started out good, then went to great…and then got better. I am always a fan of science fiction, and this book packed a lot of emotional energy in between some smooth technical descriptions of “spacey stuff”. Epstein drive? Coolest thing I’ve ever heard. And then about halfway through the book, we get…wait for it….
Yep. James S. A. Corey managed to combine space and zombies. Space zombies. That’s when I became totally hooked. If my attention was only half mast before, space zombies gave me a fully erect literature hard-on. I devoured the second half of the book. All books have those periods where they kind of slow down, you lose interest, you put the book down for a few days and don’t pick it back up. I hit that point with this book about 50% into it, and then hit that plot point and was fully committed to finishing as soon as possible.
And just when you thought you knew where the story was going, they throw in another little plot twist right around the final showdown. I didn’t see it coming, and I was pleasantly surprised. Can’t say I get a lot of that in books these days. Really, it was refreshing.
I loved the characters in this book. Amos is, of course, a fan favorite. The funny guy that everyone loves. I waited with bated breath to see if he survives the whole length of the book and…well, you’ll have to read it to find out. But my favorite character in the whole book was Miller. Holden might have been the MC, but Miller stood out as one of the most dynamic characters. I felt for him like a drunk uncle. I wanted him to be happy, whatever the hell that meant for him. And I was so thankful to know that in the end, he gets exactly what he wants. Sigh of satisfaction.
However, like all books these days, I feel like this was written more as a screenplay than an actual novel. It was heavy on dialogue and scene descriptions in a way that would work great for a tv show (which it did end up becoming). I could even hear a little of my own writer’s voice in the way he phrased things and thought to myself, “funny, I could have written something like this”, which was an interesting way to critique my own work.
Should you read it?
Yep! It was enjoyable, engaging, and even humorous at times. And if you are a fan of Resident Evil or Dead Space, you’re going to love this. Not for the faint of heart. There are gruesome descriptions about bodyparts skittering around on the ground and stomach bile floating in midair like a churning ocean. Reader beware!
Have you read it? Leave your thoughts down below!
Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications!
“Deep grief sometimes is almost like a specific location, a coordinate on a map of time. When you are standing in that forest of sorrow, you cannot imagine that you could ever find your way to a better place. But if someone can assure you that they themselves have stood in that same place, and now have moved on, sometimes this will bring hope.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
I used to be very depressed, and very anxious. There was a voice in my head constantly berating me and degrading me, telling me I wasn’t enough and I shouldn’t even try. I projected that negativity onto everyone around me, but mostly I projected it onto myself. But that voice did something else too; it created incredibly complex scenarios in my head that fueled my creativity. After all, good art is complex, and often darkest before it begins to grow light.
The things that I produced were dark, flawed, and filled with emotion. Being on antidepressants has done wonders for my mental health, but since I started taking them six months ago, I haven’t been able to write on any of my fictional stories. The nonfiction seems to flow just fine. It’s part of the reason this blog is doing so well. I am able to put together coherent thoughts in the nonfiction realm, but when it comes to creating in that paracosmatic world that I so often lived, I find that my well of creativity has run dry. There is no desire in me anymore to work on those stories, because to get to that negative headspace again would be miserable. Oh sure, I created some interesting pieces of writing, but to do so I had to depress myself so entirely that I felt on the verge of mental collapse. I would isolate myself for months at a time, especially during the winter where most of my writing happened. I would research dark topics to fuel my ever growing imagination. I would let myself spiral down and down in order to create what I created.
It seems to be a difficult tossup. Be mentally stable, healthy, and produce orthodox blog posts, or let myself sink back into that tortured psyche and create vastly interesting fictional worlds. Some of the best writers in history were known to have suffered from excruciating mental problems. Edgar Allan Poe, Stephen King, Sylvia Plath. In one way or another, through drugs or simply lack of mental stability, these authors produced some of the most tortured works of fiction. After all, how can someone create such dark literature if they live in a world of light?
In some ways I feel like that darkness was a piece of who I was, and I owned it completely. By medicating myself to become more mentally and emotionally stable, I don’t quite feel like myself. Oh sure, I feel happy. Actually, I don’t really feel anything at all. The pills I take are quite enough to deaden all of my emotions, which has definitely helped me in the real world and dealing with my anxiety. But I don’t feel like myself. Because depression is something I identified myself with for so long that it became a part of who I was. Now without it, I look back at the life I lived and wonder if that was the truer life, the truer way to live, the reality which I was born into this world to suffer through. Am I learning the lessons I need to learn by dulling my emotions? Am I fulfilling my life purpose this way? What if my life purpose was to create beautifully dark fiction and then leave this world? Surely Edgar Allan Poe’s life purpose was not to become a successful accountant. No. His life purpose was to create great works of dark fiction. That was his gift that he was born into this world possessing.
Are we, in effect, disrupting the natural flow of destiny by making ourselves comfortably numb? Is it better to take the red pill and escape the matrix of our minds? To live with the pain and discomfort of mental instability in order to grow as humans and use our greatest gifts we as creators possess; our creativity and our imaginations?
Today I thought I would try a cool yet simple idea. In the Harry Potter series, Horcruxes are objects that possess a piece of your soul, if you so choose to split it (like the evil demon that you are). By splitting your soul into pieces, you can live forever until each of those pieces is destroyed!
Translating this into muggle terms, let’s say that a Horcrux is created when you pour a piece of yourself into something that you love and cherish, instead of all that nasty negativity surrounding the creation of Horcruxes in the books. Also, in the books, Lord Voldemort has seven Horcruxes. (There were seven books too. Coincidence? I think not.)
So! What seven objects would you choose to pour a piece of your soul into? Below I list my top seven hypothetical Horcruxes.
- My 1907 copy of Alice In Wonderland
- My morganite necklace
- My bullet journal
- My tarot deck
- A box that looks exactly like 100,000 other boxes, just to mess with people
- & 7. My sisters
Ok, now one of those things is not like the other. But if we’re talking in actual Harry Potter terms, destroying a Horcrux brings you closer to destroying the person, so to confuse my arch nemesis, I would pour a piece of my soul into a cardboard box that looks exactly like other boxes. How would they know? How would they ever find it? Good luck, enemy mine.
And yes, people count for Horcruxes. I mean, spoiler alert, Lord Voldemort accidentally split his soul an extra time when he tried to kill Harry Potter, effectively making him the final Horcrux. (Hence Harry’s inevitable death, however shortlived, at the the end of book seven.) (Which, also, I am quite proud of the fact that “shortlived death” just popped out. I amaze myself with my wit sometimes.)
So yes, my sisters would definitely be Horcruxes for me. they carry a piece of me in their hearts forever, as I do with them. I will never be forgotten as long as they live. And they will never be forgotten as long as I live. But again, if we are talking in practical Harry Potter terms, it’s a bit evil choosing a person as a Horcrux, because then all your arch nemesis has to do is…kill your loved ones. Yikes. But of course, we are talking in muggle terms, so all this hyperbole is quite moot.
The 1907 copy of Alice in Wonderland will always hold a special place in my heart because I purchased it from Alice Through The Looking Glass, a shop in London that almost exclusively sells Alice In Wonderland paraphernalia. I will never forget the incredible encounter I had with the March Hare and the Mad Hatter who owned and worked in the shop. Nor the experience of seeing Alice Liddell’s actual looking glass! But that is a story for another day.
The morganite necklace I acquired after going through quite a painful breakup and I have worn it every day since. It keeps me grounded and helps me feel connected to the universe and everyone around me. The shape of the gemstone also largely reminded me of Princess Garnet’s necklace from Final Fantasy IX, a game which I adore beyond words or reason, so wearing it reminds me of one of my favorite fictitious heroines.
The others I feel are self explanatory. Just items that are very important to me and that I carry with me always.
Now it’s your turn! I challenge you to come up with seven Horcruxes for youself! If you make a post, be sure to tag me so I can read your ideas!
Take care, and don’t forget to take your medications!