I had a difficult time connecting with Jeff VanderMeer’s Borne, so I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this novella set in the same world. The Strange Bird herself is an odd amalgamation – part bird, part human, part machine, part other. She’s sentient and self-aware, but ultimately disoriented. Her understanding of the world is fragmented, much like the composition of her body.
The way VanderMeer describes bird flight in the story is evocative and beautiful. His love and appreciation for birds and their characteristics is obvious (check out his Twitter feed for further confirmation).
Overall, The Strange Bird is a moving and haunting story that reignited my interest in this world in anticipation of Borne‘s pseudo-sequel, Dead Astronauts, next on my to-read list.
★★★★½ out of 5