Review: Fluke: Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings by Christopher Moore

A long overdue book review.

I was pretty much speechless when I finished reading Fluke Or, I Know Why the Winged Whale Sings by Christopher Moore. I was floored.

Moore takes us out of San Francisco to the crystal waters of Hawaii. His main protagonist is Nathan Quinn, a scientist researching humpback whales and their song. His team consists of Clay Demodocus, the fearless photographer and one of Nate’s oldest friends; Amy Earhart, a feisty research assistant whose exceptional bottom is mentioned for most of the book; and Kona, an ersatz Rastafarian from New Jersey.

When Nate captures a written message on the fluke of a humpback, a series of mysterious events are set in motion. Seemingly random acts of vandalism and kidnapping ensue. And as many of Moore’s stories progress, really weird shit starts to happen. Certain revelations are so fantastic, I admit I was almost lost in a sea of bizarre. But Moore is mindful of the fine line he must walk, and writes with admirable balance. He guides the reader to the marvelous depths of his imagination, and does so with a steady hand. Not for one moment does he lose his grip on what is happening. The result is a harmonious blend of science fiction, witty prose, and a view of evolution as we have never seen it before.

One other reason I am solidly endeared to Fluke is that Moore devotes the last pages of his book to pointedly talk about saving the whales. His tone is light, but his information is accurate and the message is clear: If humans don’t get their act together soon, we will lose these magnificent animals.

This post was by Kubi, Whale Hugger.


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