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Preview — Fire Logic by Laurie J. Marks
Fire Logic (Elemental Logic #1)
These elements have sustained the peaceful people of Shaftal for generations, with their subtle powers of healing, truth, joy, and intuition.
But now, Shaftal is dying.
The earth witch who ruled Shaftal is dead, leaving no heir. Shaftal's ruling house has been scattered by the invading Sainnites. The Shaftali have mobilized a guerrilla army again ...more
I think the main reason I was disappointed was that over the years I've really raised my standards regarding fantasy novels. I tend to only read weird-fiction fantasy these days, and I was expecting this to be a bit weirder -- the third book in the series is printed by Small Beer, Kelly Link's pres ...more
I knew Zanja would steal my heart, because the crux of her character is that she is a diplomat! A learner of languages, crosser of borders, and traveler to strange lands! That she is a warrior also doesn't seem to negate this, which is neat considering that usually characters like her get slotted into pacifist roles, since they understand other people so well and all tha ...more
Half-fleshed out book with water/fire/air/earth elementals ("logics") running around.
What a half-fleshed out book. What does fire logic have to do with fire? What is special about fire elementals, besides that they have some form of prescience? Are all air elementals truthkens? (Again, what does that have to do with air?) Are people just randomly born elementals? There is a connection between being an earth witch and manipulating earth (for Karis, at least), but the random u ...more
The strength lies in the political and personal sub-plots. The author creates a very robust society and inter-personal dynamics, and the ethical dilemnas within them are interesting to follow as they play out. The author reminds me a bit of Heinl ...more
The writing was just not good enough to bring all of these elements together. It improved near the end of the book, but then fell off again for the denouement. Th ...more
It's a fantasy about a land overrun by foreign warlords, and elemental magic systems, and guerilla warfare, and it's not any of the things you are imagining right now because it is so much more. It is politicall ...more
My one gripe is that it was hard to get a sense of the characters' inner worlds. It took me until halfway through the book to figure out that Zanja herself largely acts (or reac ...more
People are gay, and its not even a thing. Thank. God. They just happen to be queer people caught up in a very interesting, well written story. Gender is also very well handled, in terms of the female/male ratio of side characters and main characters.
(spoiler alert) When Karis comes to get Zhanja from the box. I DIED. I want to quote what Zhanja says later in my wedding vows "You found me paralyzed and mutilated and lying in my own shit. Yet you never sham ...more
The setting is during a time of war, but really, the main characters try to stay well away from the fighting. This is a tale of how a few people, in the right place, at the right time, can shape the history of a nation. In this case, they also have the added talents of prescience and magic, but that's almost secondary.
Secondary to the overall story, but not to the plot. This is a well-thought-out system o ...more
Shaftal is a region which has been invaded by Sainnites, who themselves were driven from their land. The harsh rule of these inva ...more
Which is to say: a mutiple POV, morally complex story about a rag tag group of people with different elemental magics trying to survive and fix a fantasy world torn apart by war. The main character is dark skinned and into girls and there is genuine equality for women and lgb people (no trans, non-binary or intersex people afaict, but they may show ...more
Things that drove me nuts:
The extensive telling of every sensation, expression, ...more
This whole series was stellar, and all of you should read them. I am eagerly awaiting the final volume.
I was going to try to say some smart things about these, but got tied up trying to track down which other people said which smart things about them first. So I'll just point to this review and that review and say they probably covered most of the interesting ground w/r/t thematic content and how thoroughly the series isn't the subgenre it appears to be.
There are so many things I loved about t...more
The book begins very well indeed. In the town of Kisha lives the seat of power of the country of Shaftal. Unfortunately, the single person who wields this power (referred to as an Earth elemental) has died, and left no heir to his power. With no delay, Shaftal is invaded by the Sainites, and the country falls to them.
The story follows three main charact ...more
And then as ...more
Laurie J. Marks has a fabulous Elemental Logic series that I've been recommending to everyone I know who enjoys fantasy/sf. Most of the characters are white, but Zanja (who is the hero of the first book, Fire Logic, and a big player in the following books) is a character of color. She is amazing. She's an example of a book character you grow to love and respect so much you find yourself forgetting she's not real....more