Some of Your Blood stands out in the oeuvre of Theodore Sturgeon as a grand, unclassifiable novel. Readers who associate this author with science fiction will be surprised to find none of the trademarks of that genre here. The book is sometimes presented as a horror story or fantasy, but no elements of the fantastic or macabre figure in the tale. “I thought I was buying a hardcore crime novel,” writer Steve Rasnic Ten has noted, recalling his first encounter with the book; “but by the time I got home and into my bedroom, I wasn’t sure what I had.”
Sturgeon may have been ahead of his time, for this odd book has all the trappings of a post-modern mystery. The novel is presented in the form of a lengthy text, and its deconstruction --an unraveling of the story that points out the ominous gaps and ambiguous signifiers. At some points, the “author” intrudes to provide meta-fictional reflections on the narrative, and at the conclusion even offers a range of alternative resolutions to the story, inviting the reader to choose a favorite ending from among the available options.
All the usual plot elements are reversed here. The story starts with the criminal already in custody. But it is not clear that George Smith has broken any law. He is being held in a military hospital for observation, because a major was worried about his violent tendencies. To all appearances, the charges are overblown, and the supervising officer wants to release Smith, and hush up the whole affair.
In other words, the mystery is over before it begins. There is no crime, no criminal, no victim, no evidence, and not even an accuser — the major who made the original complaint is killed in a C-119 crash a short while later, so no one can even explain the original charges. Apparently Smith, while stationed overseas, wrote a disturbing letter that alarmed a military censor and set in motion the whole — but no copy of the letter has been preserved. Smith, for his part, is the least talkative individual in the US military and has nothing to say about his predicament.
In other words, the plot is dead on arrival, with apparently nowhere to go.