The Perfection of Fish - Book Review

The Perfection of Fish

Author: John Morrison
Genre: Fiction - Science Fiction
Publisher: Black Rose Writing
Date Published: July 9, 2020
ISBN-10: 168433506X
ISBN-13: 978-1684335060

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Book Review of :  The Perfection of Fish


The Perfection of Fish is not the Morrison family's secret recipe book on how to cook fish to perfection, but a "funtastic," futuristic fantasy that exposes the twisted minds of multiple characters diametrically opposed to one another, and with conflicting world views in a battle of the sexes. The psychedelic fisheye on the cover of The Perfection of Fish by J.S. Morrison lures the reader, while the opening paragraph sets the net and hooks the reader. The novel is set in the year 2042 where science coalesces with ancient superstition in the ghost town of Assurance, North Carolina, situated smack in the center of ley lines.

A highly sympathetic character, Nadia, is a forty-two-year-old maid suffering from agoraphobia and despair from a traumatic loss. She is trapped in her ancient mausoleum of a Victorian house in a weird techno science experiment.

Berky Benson is an eccentric gazillionaire who bankrolls the experiments with partner Canduka Cantor, an equally eccentric zealot with visions of making millions. They are crusading to influence and control people's destiny and generate an immense profit. A description of Cantor is an excellent example of the author's imagination and characterization. Cantor wore a rainbow-colored robe, had a mufti beard and eyebrows that sprouted like wild seagrass. He spoke with the measured drawl of Savannah, "dripping like dew from Spanish moss."

Marcy Darcy is the national leader of a feminazi underground movement that backs the government's intention to calm men's hedonistic tendencies by the distribution of Testrial. The drug would be added to pizza, beer, and food in prisons, sports stadia, and in soup kitchens. Testrial would calm men's worst instincts toward violence. A perfect subordinate woman with the temperament of a pet is also envisioned to help create an ideal world and future."

But why have the book titled, “The Perfection of Fish?” Because we have fish that can talk and do much more. In one scene, Cantor opens an engraved wooden box carved with nautical symbols and a mermaid blowing bubbles.  It took Cantor's breath away. Inside the box was a blood-red velvet cloth surrounding a jewel-encrusted block with an engraving of a fish. He gently removed the block, hoping to find treasure, but discovered an ivory white fish skeleton. Later in the book we encounter fish that smile and giggle.

The tantalizing twisted tale entangles many more unforgettable characters in a fishnet like plot that trawls for scientific theory and educated guesses. Chimera and Cherokee legend ensnare Berky, Cantor, Nadia's twin sister Diana, Marcy, and others in a traumatic web of deceit, murder, and subterfuge while trying to evade immigration agents, the mob and an AI system. From a pharmaceutical factory to a candy factory, Chicago to Madison Square Gardens, Charleston to New Orleans, the plot becomes as entangled as a Gordian knot.

Adding flavor and wit, the author uses dialects, foreign words, colloquialisms, idioms, and not-so-subtle humor. A quote from Cantor sums it up. "Technology plus religion, it's what we need to change the world." This weird, crazy story will keep the reader up all night following the gender wars and genetic engineering, futuristic science innovations, and fishy action.

Reviewed by: Carole W

Latest Author Interview

Discussing - The Perfection of Fish - A Video Interview

J. S. Morrison talks about his new book THE PERFECTION OF FISH. Morrison gives an overview of his book, a glimpse into his life and what inspired him to write his thought-provoking novel about life in 2042. See more about J.S. Morrison and his books over at <a href="">His Authors Page </a>

About John Morrison


J.S. Morrison has lived in the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East, and visited Asia, Africa, South America, and Antarctica. He authored feature articles in magazines, contributed to an anthology, and optioned two original screenplays before deciding to write a near-future novel about genetic engineering. The author meant it to be a dire warning to humanity, but his sense of satiric irony got in the way. When he is not writing or traveling, he dabbles in astrophysics as a member of a local scientific society.

Visit for more information on John Morrison


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