Not the Toronto I remember: Afterparty by Daryl Gregory

Work was quite insane last week, but I managed to work on my ARC pile demolition project by finishing Afterparty by Daryl Gregory. I loved his Pandemonium and sort of liked The Devil’s Alphabet (in that I thought it was interesting but not a particularly enjoyable book).

afterparty-cover-400x582I had really high expectations for Afterparty. Sometimes predisposition to like the book leads to actual liking, but ever so often it leads to disappointment. Afterparty wasn’t really a disappointment per se, but it wasn’t as awesome as I had expected it to be. That said, after a great start and then a somewhat lackluster second quarter it got much better about halfway through (and once again proved my theory that inclusion of a weird/eerie/genius/unsettling little girl character can only improve your novel).

It has neat ideas and interesting discussion of said neat ideas. Well, you have a drug that makes you a true believer in whatever god you now have as an imaginary friend. The question then becomes that if everyone has intimate connection and access to their own personal deity, will this make them crazy believers or actually better people? There are also all kinds of questions one can ponder about the nature of religious belief and the creation of such. If you are an atheist who is taking this drug, does this mean you now believe in god, or does this mean you spend the rest of your life fighting an exhausting battle trying to convince your own brain that your god is only imaginary?

Gregory always manages to put interesting ideas about humanity and consciousness into his books, and Afterparty is no exception. Plus, it starts in Toronto, which remains one of the best places in which to set your sci-fi novel. You go, hometown.

Here’s Afterparty on Indiebound if you want to give some nice indie your money for it.


  1. Toronto’s your hometown? Wow, mine too, before I moved to the States. I went to UofT and lived in the heart of the city for years. I had no idea this book takes place in part in Toronto, I might have to check it out based on that alone. Not every day you see a book set there.

    1. I went to UofT too! Got my undergrad and my masters there. Technically I was born in the USSR, but I lived in TO for 10 years, and it’s the city I miss the most. Plus, my parents are there.

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