I spent the entire weekend sleeping. Well, that's not quite accurate. After sleeping on friday night, I woke up sometime around 3 AM (missed barcamp that way) on saturday night and started to look for something to do. So I started to finish reading Earth, Air, Fire and Custard. Maybe it was a bad idea to read through the final chapters about a deliberately flawed hero (as pointed out by the Fey) especially when I was in a really bad mood. But I speed read my way through this one.
The book is pretty interesting, though I suppose I should read the "The Portable Door " and "In Your Dreams" to actually make sense of the entire Sophie Pettingel situation. I think the word retro-continuity would be the right one, where the current events are related to the ones that happen afterwards which turn around our natural causation ideas of "before and after" on its head. But that is only a natural consequence in a universe that lets you travel across time.
The omniscience of Van Spee sort of drives itself on the old thread of physical determinism which, if you've read through Freedom Evolves, restricts all instants to only one physically possible future. Also revealing the fridge to be Laeritides sort of weakens the plot a bit, especially since he is the Godfather (that could be said with a space in between and an ampersand) to Paul Carpenter. The presence of such a cosmic policeman undercover indirectly implies that God isn't omipotent and throws in a few other philosophical paradoxes for the true believers.
Anyway, basically Paul is a loser. Tom Holt wastes no opportunity to make this clear and does it in a few hundred pages. Also he puts in a few interesting jabs about people's judgement. The part about love at first sight and all that is a clear dig at the basic human tendency to judge a book by its cover. Oh and to understand the title of this, please look at what the fridge says to Paul.
Despite the happy ending, it did nothing to improve my mood and I continued to sleep after I was done.--
Oops, I always forget the purpose of competition is to divide people into winners and losers.
-- Hobbes in a sarcastic mood