The more Stross I read, the more I fall in love with his unique style. Call it conversational, call it British, call it rambly, call it what you will—again, there’s no denying that Charles can write.
This is a unicorn story like you’ve never seen before. Seriously. The horror and grotesquery makes this a novella I regret (not really) to reading at night.
Also, there’s a pretty heavy riff on H.P. Lovecraft in this novella. Not enough that I didn’t enjoy it, but I’m sure fans will get an extra kick.
I wasn’t sure what to think at the beginning of Equoid, since I get the sense that Stross doesn’t always take his stories seriously (from accountant bats in Neptune’s Brood to Word documents that will eat your soul in this one…it’s got that touch of the absurd that is awesome every now and then), but by the end I really warmed up to it. A few more Hugo-nominated novellas to read, but this one will be high up on the list for surely.
One last thing, though: while it was a fun read, but I really have no desire to start reading the Laundry Files. Still ambivalent, and will need something else to push me over the edge.