Information about DJ Daniels:
DJ Daniels is an Australian author and musician. She writes when she manages to get her husband and two daughters out of the house and during lulls in the ongoing dog-lizard war. (Lizards are well ahead.) Her first novel, What the Dead Said, was followed by a raft of short stories which have appeared in publications such as Aurealis, Andromeda Spaceways Magazine, and So It Goes. She was a judge for the 2012 Aurealis Awards and is one of the Sydney Story Factory's Ambassadors of Ink.
Click here to visit her official website.
Information about Green Jay and Crow:
“I WAS MEANT TO COME TO BARLEWIN. BUT I WAS NEVER MEANT TO STAY”
The half-forgotten streets of Barlewin, in the shadow of the High Track, are a good place to hide: among the aliens and the couriers, the robots and the doubles, where everyone has secrets.
Like Eva, a 3D-printed copy of another woman, built to be disposable. She should have disintegrated days ago... and she hasn’t.
And now her creator wants her back.
In Green Jay and Crow, DJ Daniels presents a powerful tale of humanity, identity, and the hope that drives us all.
REVIEW: GREEN JAY AND CROW BY DJ DANIELS
Of all the science fiction novels I've read during the recent months, DJ Daniels' Green Jay and Crow is definitely one of the most original. It's a fresh, strange and thought-provoking literary exploration of humanity and identity in a trans-human world. It's a celebration of creativity, imagination and originality.
I was positively surprised by this novel, because it was something altogether different from what has been published by other authors. I was impressed by its various elements and found the story intriguing. It was simultaneously a bewildering and enthralling reading experience that left me yearning for more.
Green Jay and Crow is not a simple novel, because the author doesn't explain everything to her readers, but the story rewards its reader with various elements ranging from 3D-printing to time travel. It's possible that this novel may not be to everybody's liking, because it's slightly different from other science fiction novels and more difficult than them, but I consider this to be one of its strengths.
I was intrigued by the story, because it's not your normal kind of science fiction. It's an incredibly fresh read, because it explores survival and what it is like to be human and a real living person, but different from others.
The events in this novel take place in Barlewin and the High Track. It follows what happens to two characters, Eva "Green Jay" and Kern Bromley "Crow" (Brom). The story is told from their perspectives.
Eva "Green Jay" is a 3D-printed copy of a woman and has been made of disposable plant matter. She is the body double of Olwin Duilis and has her original's memories. She has been designed to disintegrate quickly, but that hasn't happened to her. She is gradually becoming more and more herself, but feels that she is more of a plant than a person. The robots allowed her to escape from her maker.
Brom "Crow" is a human who lives in Barlewin. He does errands for the crime lord Guerra, who deals in drugs. He collects and delivers packages with Mac "Blue Jay". When he decides to deliver a Time-Locked package to Guerra, he visits alternate realities with the box. Soon Brom finds out that Eva needs the Time-Locked box and he is the person who can open it.
This novel has fascinating details that create a sense of a futuristic cityscape. For example, there are big screens that are used for brain training. The author's slightly obscure vision of the world is fascinating.
The alien beings, the Tenties (the Trocarn), are hovering aliens that haven't been long in the world. Technology seems to have attracted them to contact humans and become part of the world. Because I've always had a soft spot for tentacled and strange aliens, I enjoyed reading about the Tenties and their weird existence, and was fascinated by how they arrived among humans.
There's something in this novel that reminds me of the stories and novels written by a few classic science fiction authors. The story has a strong feel of Philip K. Dick to it and will inevitably draw comparison to his stories, but it also has tiny echoes of Harlan Ellison.
The cover image by Pye Parr fits the story perfectlty. The portrait of Eva looks good on the cover.
I consider DJ Daniels to be a bold and talented new voice in science fiction. I like her literary output, because she doesn't reveal everything and is slightly mysterious about the futuristic world she has created. She has written a story in which the readers need to read between the lines to understand some of the things that are going on. I definitely have to take a look at her short stories, because I enjoyed this novel.
If you're looking for a new and original science fiction novel to read, you can't go wrong by reading DJ Daniels' Green Jay and Crow, because it's utterly delightful and unique. It will please readers who love fresh science fiction stories with thought-provoking elements.
My final words are:
This novel is weird, original and wonderful science fiction!