Review: Fast moving, well-written, tongue-in-cheek dramatic comedy which was so representative of real-life in some aspects, it felt like coming home. You could well understand the main character’s feelings, and though written in first person, the sole perspective is varied enough that it never seems one-dimensional.
I found the story laugh-out-loud surprising at times, a witty, intelligent “what if”. It’s irreverent and thought-provoking with characters asking some of the same questions I did as an inquiring young person. People not willing to ask the hard questions about Christianity and their book of beliefs, nor accept the fact there are no definite answers or substantiated miracles or anything else, would be highly offended. This is a provocative fantasy which, if anything, should confirm a Christian faith, because if they still “believe” after reading it, they should give themselves a pat on the back.
I thoroughly enjoyed “Polly!”, especially the end note by the author:
YOU, TOO, CAN BE
Tired of hypocrisy? Want to fight entropy? Or maybe
just hang out and talk with good people?
Come join the party. Meet us online at Polly’s place:
don’t guarantee Polly will furnish any of her worldfamous
refreshments, but the company will be sociable
and the atmosphere stimulating. Who knows? Maybe
Polly herself will drop by for a chat.
And please check out the POLLYTHEISM blog at:
http://pollytheism.blogspot.com/. Remember, Pollytheism
is the only religion in the world not endorsed by the
person it’s devoted to.
I don’t do it often, but while searching for the official description of Polly!, I happened to read a review of this book before I’d personally read it. The point they’d made was that it should be recommended to “no one”, based on the fact of its god disrespecting and hateful narratives. What that person didn’t seem to take into account was that it was a narrative. It’s one of the main character’s views, which after having your wife walk out on you, your store and livelihood burned down, you’re bankrupt and down on your luck, even many “believers” might doubt their god or curse their luck. The lack of objectivity some people display is stunning at times.
These past weeks I’ve been doing specific research, beyond my past studies into post-war Germany and the Holocaust, on attitudes which allowed atrocities to happen. It wasn’t great evil in the majority of people, it was intolerance for others which eventually morphed into widespread hatred and condemnation of those who think, believe or behave different than oneself. Amazing how a fantasy book can bring out the intolerant, hypocritical nature of some “true” believers.
Description: “Herodotus Shapiro has had an unbelievably bad week. His wife left him. The IRS is after him for thousands of dollars. His home/bookstore burned down. On his way to take refuge at his brother’s place, he got a speeding ticket. And now his car has broken down in the middle of the desert in front of a large mansion. What more can go wrong?
But now his world takes a turn for the weird. The mansion has a snowman on the front lawn–in the desert, in July. The house, which is bigger on the inside than on the outside, is owned by Polly, the most preternaturally beautiful young woman he’s ever met. Polly is an acrobat, a gourmet chef, a psychologist, an international financial consultant, a physicist and a woman of who-knows how many other incredible talents. She has an unbelievable library, an art collection of all the world’s great masterpieces, and a print of a previously unknown Marx Brothers film. Her toilet paper is actually silk.
And she seems to have some mysterious plans for him …”
Born in Philadelphia in 1947, Stephen Goldin has lived in California since 1960. He received a Bachelor’s degree in Astronomy from UCLA and worked as a civilian space scientist for the U.S. Navy for a few years after leaving college, but has made his living as a writer/editor most of his life.
His first wife was fellow author Kathleen Sky, with whom he co-wrote the first edition of the highly acclaimed nonfiction book The Business of Being a Writer. His current wife is fellow author Mary Mason. So far they have co-authored two books in the Rehumanization of Jade Darcy series.
He served the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America for close to three years as editor of the SFWA Bulletin, and another three years as the organization’s Western Regional Director.
He has lived with cats all his adult life. Artistically, he enjoys Broadway musicals and surrealist art. Philosophically, he is an atheist.