Doctor Trevor Adams is a genius by all accounts. His ethics, however, leave a bit to be desired. When the Aphrodite Aesthetic Reconstruction Clinic hires him to create a genetic weight-loss treatment, Doctor Adams uses a synthetic retro virus to transport pygmy shrew DNA into clients willing to pay tens of thousands of dollars to be able to eat whatever they want without gaining a pound.
Pygmy Shrews have metabolisms so fast they don’t store fat cells and have to eat every two hours, twice their body-weight in food every day, or they will die. When they are hungry, they will attack and consume prey more than twice their size. They have fangs tipped with a red iron ore, saliva that contains a paralyzing neurotoxin, are the size of a quarter, and are considered to be some of the most vicious animals on earth. When Doctor Adams’s clients begin burning more calories than they can possibly consume, he is afraid he has made one terrible mistake.
Voracious: insatiable, gluttonous.
A novella with such a title by Wrath James White – that’s gonna be a tasty morsel!
Hunger… they all have it.
And according to the current (western) ideal a weight problem.
But after the hunger, there’s ravenousness…
…a ravenous appetite that cannot be satisfied!
The beginning of the book reminds me of the good old 90’s trash: everything’s a bit simpler, more rudimentary – but also somehow realistic (or at least closer)! No filters, the mask is limited to its essentials – straight in the face, SOAB!
Call it daring or skilful to spend about half of the 127 pages to the background story; but let’s be honest: we’re talking about White! – the man not only knows very well what he’s doing, he’s god damn doing it!
Because of the short and hard changes of perspective and protagonists, the story itself picks up speed several times, and it feels like Wrath is throwing Jabs at the reader – well, he throws Jabs!
But it wouldn’t be White, if there wouldn’t be a certain social-critical note. Thus, the ending is much more bitter than I’ve expected at the beginning.
And here (once again) is Wrath’s typicality: he’s a technician who doesn’t act blindly! 127 pages aren’t little, but what it needs; the background-story is not pronounced, but the base of the goal; this novella has been written solely for this end – it’s not headed for it, but aims at it in all mercilessness!
The book only for this ending!
For some reason I always had to think of a collaboration when reading – for example with J.F. Gonzalez (RIP); somehow it would have fitted. Maybe it’s ’cause of this wonderful trash feeling, which also Clickers knows to convey so skilfully, maybe it’s because…
Oh, I digress! I can’t really justify this feeling – and I don’t have to: I like it!
Voracious doesn’t seem to be White’s best novella at the first enjoyment (fits like a glove), but the longer you chew on it (yeah, I know), the more you acquire the taste for it (ok, it’s enough now) and soon there’s hardly anything left to do, but understand once again, why White is one of the beasts of the scene.
It’s fun, a (small) gain for fans and a (short) pleasure for trash lovers – and even if the Heavyweight Bloodgod can definitely do more (and has already proven this more than once impressively), it just doesn’t need that here – Wrath ends the fight after the second round; in the first round he just warmed up…
Buy, have fun and think about it.