Friday, June 2, 2017

Five of the best SF/F novels about Neanderthals

At the B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog Ceridwen Christensen tagged five of the best SF/F novels about Neanderthals (that aren’t The Clan of the Cave Bear). One title on the list:
Eaters of the Dead, by Michael Crichton

This Beowulf update is told from the point of view of a 10th century urbane Muslim who ends up in exile with a bunch of barely housebroken Vikings, with editor’s notes overlaid and interspersed like an academic text. The Grendel characters that they do battle with are a remnant population of ferocious, brutish Neanderthals. Eaters of the Dead doesn’t have anything particular to say about Neanderthals, as they are mostly a conflict engine, but it does comment on the perceptions of history through its structure. Don’t let that dissuade you though: the narrator’s horrified complaining about his Viking companions and some high historical silliness make for an entertaining read. The novel was questionably adapted into the film The 13th Warrior with Antonio Banderas, rworrr.
Read about the other entries on the list.

Eaters of the Dead is among Jeff Somers's ten top SFF books that take on Norse mythology.

--Marshal Zeringue