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May 2016
 

The Bellinghman
Date: 2007-10-16 11:24
Subject: #179 F. M. Busby: The Breeds of Man
Security: Public
Tags:books, reviews
F. M. Busby: The Breeds of Man

Mass Market Paperback: 294 pages
Publisher: Bantam Books (Mm) (Mar 1988)
ISBN-10: 0553270087
ISBN-13: 978-0553270082
Category(ies): SF

The setup for this novel feels dated these days. It starts with one of those big research organisations run by a management genius (very prevalent in that era's SF - probably attempting to reflect RAND or something similar). They're trying to find a cure for AIDS (so pretty well of the moment 20 years ago).

They find a physiological solution. But it has some interesting side effects. And the research organisation then attempts to solve the side effects. And ends up with a second order side effect, one in which the offspring born afterwards, on reaching puberty, turn out to be cyclic hermaphrodites, changing gender under hormonal cues. This is kept from the general public, but understandably, those young people want their freedom, and such a secret can't be kept forever. The body of this book is concerned with the working out of these pressures.

(I've remarked before that Busby's plotting is strongly driven by sex. This is no different - of course the youngsters will be experimenting with their sexuality.)

Interesting in places.
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