The Kaiju Preservation Society

John Scalzi
The Kaiju Preservation Society Cover

The Kaiju Preservation Society


260 pages of eye-rolling dad jokes and adolescent bathroom humor. This is a prime example of why SF has historically not been taken seriously in certain literary circles.

Billed as "a fun read" that Scalzi himself described as meant to be light and catchy like a pop song, and popular Scalzi is apparently, but that's not a good excuse for poor writing, lazy research and unapologetically ripping off other people's ideas.

Nuclear powered Godzillas in Jurassic Park are accessed through an inter-dimensional portal. Seriously. The plot holes abound, but the frustrating thing is that where real physics, biology and chemistry concepts could've been applied for better effect with minimal research, they were instead lazily left untouched in favor of Homer Simpson science. Scalzi discussing the book's first draft with his editor:

"It's nuc-u-lar"

"No John, I promise you it's nuclear"


From the millennial mystery gender protagonist to the billionaire bad guy, the characters are all the same flat, unlikable personality with the same sense of humor, despite absurd efforts at diversity via names, nationality and gender identity. The dialog reads like a truly terrible teenage sitcom as written by those completely oblivious to what teenagers think is entertaining. Prepare to have your intelligence insulted throughout. No subtlety or implication, just a parent telling a story to a toddler - repetitive, obvious and painfully corny. If Stephen King had written this the author would've been Richard Bachman.

THE KAIJU PRESERVATION SOCIETY has the literary value of a fortune cookie. I only wish it had been as concise.