by Michael Cisco
Publication Date: 16th Oct, 2013
Paperback, 380 pages
From the Glossary:
Chorncendantra — the current phase of the cosmic game originating on the artificial planetary system; the game is played by two arbitrarily determined teams across many planets. Chorncendantra is the universal systemmechanism. It is the human game.
Member is the account of how Thanks (the narrator) “accidentally recruited” himself into “the cosmic game of Chorncendantra.” On a night stroll he comes into possession of a mysteriuous bag. Investigating, he discovers that it contains a dimensional hole to another world. By accident or design, as bearer of the bag, he is now a courier, carrying messages in a cosmos-wide game he does not understand.
Its prose precise and energetic, Member creates a literary virtual reality of strangeness both fantastical and Kafkaesque. Rather than a fever-dream, Cisco offers us a breathing here-and-now set within cosmic vastness.
About The Author
Michael Cisco is the author of The Divinity Student (Buzzcity Press; International Horror Writers Guild Award for best first novel of 1999), The San Veneficio Canon (Prime Books, 2004), The Tyrant (Prime Books, 2004), a contributor to The Thackery T. Lambshead Pocket Guide to Eccentric and Discredited Diseases (eds. Jeff VanderMeer and Mark Roberts) and Album Zutique (ed. Jeff VanderMeer), and his work has appeared in Leviathan III and Leviathan IV (ed. Forrest Aguirre). His novel, The Traitor, is published by Prime (2007). Secret Hours, a collection of his Lovecraftian short stories, is published by Mythos Books (2007). In 2009-2010, his stories have appeared in the Phantom (“Mr. Wosslynne”), Black Wings (“Violence, Child of Trust”), Lovecraft Unbound (“Machines of Concrete Light and Dark), Cinnabar’s Gnosis: A Tribute to Gustav Meyrink (“Modern Cities Exist Only to be Destroyed”), and Last Drink Bird Head anthologies. Forthcoming works include a story in The Master in the Cafe Morphine: A Tribute to Mikhail Bulgakov (“The Cadaver Is You”), an appearance in The Weird (Atlantic/Corvus), an omnibus edition of published work from Centipede Press, The Wretch of the Sun, from Ex Occidente Press, and The Narrator, from Civil Coping Mechanisms. His columns and the occasional review can be found at TheModernWord.com. He lives and teaches in New York City.
What People Say
“A rivetingly strange novel in which Cisco mixes game theory, serious philosophy, SF, and dark fantasy into something at once unreal and really entrancing. Kind of like what might happen if Wyndham Lewis decided to write like M. John Harrison and had Martin Heidegger as his editor. Member is a complex, compelling work.”
Praise for Cisco’s previous Chômu release, Celebrant:
“With Michael Cisco doing things like this, sometimes it feels like the rest of literature might as well get up and head home.”