I have a new review up at Strange Horizons today, of Adrian Barnes’s superb debut novel, Nod. I read it shortly after contributing to the debate on freshness in works of the fantastic, and it struck me as just the sort of thing I wanted to see.

In Nod, most of the world’s population loses the ability to sleep, which leads to psychosis within a few days – to the point where people’s perceptions can be manipulated with a word. Barnes tells of the power plays – the literal war or words – that goes on in a corner of Vancouver.

What interests me most about this novel is its pervading sense of unease at a situation which is all-consuming for its characters, yet is explicitly temporary. It makes for a fascinating read.

Click here to read my review of Nod in full.

This book has been shortlisted for the 2013 Arthur C. Clarke Award. Click here to read my other posts on this year’s Award.