Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain by A. Lee Martinez

Emperor Mollusk Versus the Sinister Brain
by A. Lee Martinez
Orbit March 2012

I’ve made an effort to get more experimental with my reading choices. I’m trying to stretch my imagination beyond its borders by going for things I wouldn’t have in the past. Bear with me on this one, for this book has way more going on than anything I’ve come across in a long time. Forget the Sinister Brain, you need a clear brain yourself to truly enjoy this book. You gotta get all Tim Burton/Hawkwind/1950s pulp/Heavy Metal (the comic) in your mind.

Mollusk is a crustacean-like creature. Basically a brain with a slug like body. No skeleton. His brain is like that of a genius with unrivaled intelligence. To compensate for mobility, he has used his smarts to build all kinds of robot-like suits, including a Ninja suit and one like the loader Ripley uses in Aliens, basically one for anything he could possibly need, not to mention some spaceships for lack of a better term. Mollusk’s smarts have also caused every disaster he has ever saved Earth from. Mollusk decides to retire and quicker that you can quote Pacino in Godfather 3, he is pulled back in.

I loved reading this because it did exactly what I hoped for. It was cool trying to picture all the different monsters and spacecrafts and plots. At some points it did the trick almost too well because I would get confused trying to keep track of them. That’s an area in books like these that gets to me. That is really the only negative thing I can say about this book. I also loved the character of Mollusk himself. In other books he would have been, I don’t know, James Bond or something. Instead he is all brains and a smart ass attitude. He is an underdog who wins every time. It’s July. This is your summertime, big budget, popcorn Michael Bay film in a book. Have fun.

Dave Wahlman