GREENER THAN YOU THINK by Ward Moore
Kirkus Star

GREENER THAN YOU THINK

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KIRKUS REVIEW

#10 in Crown's worthy Classics of Modern Science Fiction series (see also #9, Oliver, below). Moore (1903-78), author of the famous alternate-history novel Bring the Jubilee. wrote this, his first sf novel, in 1947 (a British hard-cover appeared, followed by a revised, abridged US paperback in 1961). This is the original, uncut text--and it's a superior black comedy with a sharp satirical edge. Albert Weener, a down-at-heel salesman of unshakable dignity, answers a newspaper ad. and meets eccentric botanist and defiant virgin Josephine Spenser Francis; she's just invented the ""Metamorphizer,"" a miracle compound that enhances plant growth. Miss Francis gives Weener a sample and instructions to spray some cropland; but, reasoning that there's little money to be made out of farmers, Weener targets a scraggly front lawn--with gratifying results: the lawn rapidly grows thick and tall and green. Unfortunately, several days later, the lawn is still growing and spreading, unmowable, unstoppable, consuming everything in its path. The grass advances across the continent, undeterred by tanks, flamethrowers, or atom bombs. Cities, farms, houses vanish; hungry refugees trek aimlessly; governments collapse. Meanwhile, Weener, through luck and shrewdness, corners the market on the remaining food supplies and becomes the most powerful man in the world; Miss Francis, despite Weener's ridicule, doggedly searches for a counteragent. Along the way, Moore satirizes everything from politicians, the military, and government committees to scientists, bigots, and the media. Add the larger-than-life characters, the strong if somewhat uneven plot, and Moore's dense, sometimes rather difficult style: challenging, scathing, richly rewarding work.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1985
ISBN: 1434462285
Publisher: Crown