Steven "Jumper" Gould's new novel 7TH SIGMA: genre-busting science fiction/western kicks ass


21 Responses to “Steven "Jumper" Gould's new novel 7TH SIGMA: genre-busting science fiction/western kicks ass”

  1. thelibrarian says:

    Steven Gould has given a write-up of the background of this book over on John Scalzi’s blog, which addresses some of the concerns here:


    Yes this is explicitly a retelling of ‘Kim’, much like Gaiman’s “The Graveyard Book” is a retelling of “The Jungle Book”.

    The bugs are not damaged/killed by water or humidity: “They avoid water. Doesn’t destroy them, but they avoid it.”

  2. bardfinn says:

    Oh, yummy.

  3. VicHoon says:

    Waaay too much exposition – a bit like one of those movie trailers that condense the entire film in 2 minutes.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hi everyone!
    Doesn’t this sound a little bit like Kim, from Rudyard Kipling?
    You know, a streetwise orphan named Kim meeting some monk-like figure and embarking on a quest of enlightenment/fun together. Them developing true affection for each other, but at the same time Kim becoming an undercover agent for the powers-that-be.
    Don’t get me wrong, Kim is one of my all time favourite books, and a well done mushup between it and a sci-fi western sounds cool, the similarities just struck me when I read the synopsis.

  5. Adam C says:

    Jumper is not his best book. You should check out Wildside, Green War, Helm, or Blind Waves.

  6. Kimmo says:

    …provided you don’t subscribe to the weird philosophy that says kids who read the F-word are permanently corrupted.

    That shit’s way too bankrupt to be considered philosophy; it’s mere doctrine.

  7. yclept says:

    Where have I read about these metal eating bugs before? Maybe a serialized chapter or something? In any case, once I get through my current queue, this one is up. Also, never read Jumper so WOOHOO, two new in the queue!

  8. 0xdeadbeef says:

    “A Story, with Beans” was in Year’s Best Science Fiction 27.

  9. Avram / Moderator says:

    When I saw the cover I thought it would be about science fiction about super-advanced business management.

  10. GuidoDavid says:

    I hope it’s as good as Jumper, not as bad as the second sequel.

  11. Zadaz says:

    Wait… the bugs that are simply defeated by water, but will burrow through distinctly watery human flesh to get more metal?

    Dammit, I would have read this book if you hadn’t summarized it with a giant stupid plot hole.

    • Anonymous says:

      You could give it the benefit of the doubt before assuming it’s a plot hole. It could be that the bugs don’t have trouble with water or watery-substances short term, but long term humid conditions don’t mesh well with their makeup.. Or, hell, it could be that they’re specifically programmed to die off if the average daily humidity gets too high by whatever force created them (presumably living in a humid climate).

      I loved Jumper and while none of Gould’s other novels quite lived up to that, they’ve always been enjoyable.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Um… doesn’t this sound just like the whole “replicator” concept from Stargate SG1?

    • Anonymous says:

      Oh my god… you’re right!


      I just discovered something astounding.

      You know how in the later seasons of Stargate SG1, they started travelling on ships?

      Doesn’t that sound just like that whole Star Trek series they had in the 60s?

      Congratulations, you’ve stumbled upon the great secret of SF:
      it’s not about creating the most innovative new ideas nobody’s ever seen before, although if you can manage that, great, (Stargate didn’t come up with the idea of self-replicating machines that destroy civilizations, btw). It’s about telling great stories with whatever SF ideas are good enough building blocks, even if they’ve been used before.

  13. Anonymous says:

    If these bugs are harmed by moisture, how can they tunnel through human flesh? Bit of a logic problem there…

  14. niro5 says:

    Hmm, this sounds amazingly similar to the Novel Kim by Rudyard Kipling. Orphan boy named Kim surviving on his wits in a frontier only to be taken in to work for the secret service.

    I mean, except for the bugs of course.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Well, i havent read it, but the bugs dont have to be killed right away by water, maybe they just rust up over a few hours. So the ones that kill people would still themselves die a few hours later.

  16. KKnox says:

    A short story from this universe is available at

    I liked it very much and am looking forward to reading the novel.

  17. bocomo says:

    reminds me of Prey, by Michael Crichton

    i’ll still give it a read, though

Leave a Reply