I started An Evil Guest, Gene Wolfe’s latest, on the way to Games Club yesterday. (Oh, lost a lot of games of Race for the Galaxy and Dominion.) Here are things I’m noticing as I go; page references are from the first Tor hardcover:
Gideon Chase is described several times as a wizard. In Chapter 1, the president wants to hire him to gather some intelligence (brains). In Chapter 2 (page 26), we’re told about a couple of his earlier clients. One was a rich woman who hired him to do something for her son, the son wound up being more brave (courage). The other was an oil company (an artificial person needing oil) worried about the nationalization of oil resources in the country that was its source; Chase did something, and now the country and company love each other (in other words, he gave the company heart).
Cory Doctorow reference
On page 41, Gideon is bringing Cassie to a mountaintop in Canada. Gideon tells Cassie why he’s using this mountain:
”[…] All mountains are stone. Most have no life. This one is alive. […] It is alive and sentient. It can speak, though it rarely does. It has a wife who lives in one of its many caves. She is — a laundress. Let’s leave it at that. […]”
In Cory Doctorow’s Someone Comes to Town, Someone Leaves Town, the main character’s father is a sentient mountain near Kapuskasing, Ontario. His mother is a laundry machine in one of the mountain’s caves.
On page 53, we learn that Cassie Casey lives in Kingsport. There’s a Kingsport in Tennessee, but that’s probably too far to get to Canada and back in one night, even in Gideon’s car which can go 140 mph. So it’s probably HP Lovecraft’s fictional Kingsport, Massachusetts.