I haven't read this book, nor heard of Tony Ballantyne. This blog article has me quite intrigued, though, and I may buy it to put on my already-too-long reading list.
Your attempt at describing it without telling the story prompted a few thoughts. The "alien presence invades mind and takes over body" or "takes over electronic or mechanical device" premise has been used many, many times. However, I don't recall ever reading watching, or hearing about an alien intelligence taking over a completely inanimate and immobile object - like a building.
Not just taking it over and controlling the elevators; but essentially turning it into, by some perspectives, a living, breathing, sentient being. Concrete and steel don't think, move and grow, but what if, in a somewhat overlapping dimension/reality, those materials are the building blocks of life?
@Duane: This blog article has me quite intrigued, though...
I'll tell you one thing ... you will never again take a trip to the monkey house in a zoo without seeing things from a completely different perspective that will make your eyes water (said Max, cryptically, his eyes watering as he recalls a particular scene that shall remain unspoken)
I don't read much science fiction. In the ones that I have read, I find that even if you suspend disbelief there is always something that seems just plain ridiculous. The SF last book I read was "Sacre Bleu: A Comedy d'Art" by Christopher Moore and was about the use of a particular shade of blue in artwork. Since you have some leanings to art you may appreciate the book more than I did- it interweave the story with some of the well known artists like Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec, Manet, Monet etc. In the end I was left with the feeling that the whole premise was implausible- the foundation of the story did not hold water.
I read your comments on Dream London with some interest, but with so much to read I am afraid that even with your reccomendation, I am not sure I will ever get to it.
@Antedeluvian: ...with so much to read I am afraid that even with your reccomendation, I am not sure I will ever get to it.
I do know what you mean -- I have a bookshelf here in my office that is groaning under the weight of the books that are still awaiting my attention -- but if you ever do find the time, let me know and I will be happy to loan you my copy.
@Antedeluvian: ...even if you suspend disbelief there is always something that seems just plain ridiculous.
The strange thing about this book is that, even though things are happening like buildings changing shape and moving around, it doesn;t actually seem ridiculous -- it's not like they are "walking" around -- and they don;t change while anyone is looking -- it's just that day-by-day things are a little bit different. It's almost as though someone (or something) is rewriting our reality ... but how could this be?
The strange thing about this book is that, even though things are happening like buildings changing shape and moving around, it doesn;t actually seem ridiculous
I don't need fiction to have strange things described- I am reading "The Last Stand" (Custer and crew circa 1879) and the author describes how some steamboats were capable of dragging themselves over the dry parts of the Missouri River using winches and the onboard steam engine and this could go on for months in the dry season.