I had a copy from Edelweiss but waited too long to get into it, and my download expired. I wasn't sure I would finish anyway. I started out assuming iI had a copy from Edelweiss but waited too long to get into it, and my download expired. I wasn't sure I would finish anyway. I started out assuming it would be a lot like Divergent, and it is similar in that people can get tested and placed into an affinity group. But not everyone tests into one, and not everyone gets tested. Affinity groups seem to be an evolution in the family unit, replacing it, but it is fairly new in society. By the place I reached in the story, one group had received information that they had the potential to change the world, and were starting out to do so (likely with some significant push back.)
Kind of utopian, and as many utopias go, looked bound for dystopia....more
This is really more like 3.5 stars. The ideas are fun but there are too many for the length. I would have loved a full novel to explore more of it forThis is really more like 3.5 stars. The ideas are fun but there are too many for the length. I would have loved a full novel to explore more of it for longer. I suppose this is a reflection of the crowd-funded process when something is written outside the normal method (you know, with editing!)
But virtual worlds... near-future San Francisco... quantum computers... detective stories... falafel... if you like those things you are likely to enjoy it....more
I can see why this is such a fantasy classic. I was well-served to read it alongside other people, forced to read only a few chapters a week - this alI can see why this is such a fantasy classic. I was well-served to read it alongside other people, forced to read only a few chapters a week - this allowed me to notice more things and appreciate the small bits in a way I don't usually do. Besides having a decent story, Beagle has a good balance of quirky, humor, romance, and deep thoughts. Perfect for younger and older readers....more
I probably would not have read this book if it hadn't been selected for the Sword and Laser book club for March 2015, and in the same month get announI probably would not have read this book if it hadn't been selected for the Sword and Laser book club for March 2015, and in the same month get announced as one of the Nebula nominees.
It's not my normal fare, in other words. It was described to me as a steampunk-fantasy court drama novel, but I would characterize it more as a coming of age, fish out of water, court drama novel. The steampunk is far in the background and as much as I don't geek out about those kinds of details, I think more of them would have made the world more interesting - more magic too, please! It's there, but so far in the background.
The other parts of the world, from the elaborate family names to the complex kingdom rulership borders, to the elfin-goblin conflicts, were interesting and didn't feel like many other things. Actually I did keep thinking of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin but I'm not sure others will see the parallels.
The best part, in my opinion, is the character of Maia the goblin emperor. I think the author writes him very compassionately, although flawed. He has quite the wardrobe.
I am surprised this isn't the first in a trilogy or series because it feels like everything just gets settled by the end, and after all of this world has been created, it might be nice for the author to keep writing in it.
You would think this fulfilled my fantasy reading for the year, but no. My usually post-modern literary book club has selected a fantasy novel for our next read, one I never would have read.... well here we go....more
Neil Gaiman is an excellent teller of stories, and I usually enjoy his audio. This is an entertaining short story, not as twisty as some of his, but I liked the musical interludes and accompaniment. He seems to be writing several stories set in the Hebrides and this was a nice trip there.
I'll have a longer review of the set of stories soon!...more
As usual with short story anthologies - some I was not interested in, some I loved. What I wish was less often - how many of these stories I'd read alAs usual with short story anthologies - some I was not interested in, some I loved. What I wish was less often - how many of these stories I'd read already, published in other compilations. I know it's an author's prerogative how they bundle and republish their work, but I'd prefer to be given new stories.
Don't skip the introductions. They put each story into context and one has a hint of a future novel (very exciting!)
-The Thing About Cassandra
-The Truth is a Cave in the Black Mountains (recommended: the separate Audible production with the FourPlay String Quartet)
-Black Dog It is important to note that depression is often referred to as the "black dog."
-The Man Who Forgot Ray Bradbury - a lovely tribute to an author and more generally, ruminations on what happens to works once they're out there
"I sometimes imagine I would like my ashes to be scattered in a library. But then the librarians would just have to come in early the next morning to sweep them up again."
-In Relig Odhráin - largely because it was set on a tiny island that both the author and I adore. I would love to go back and read this story again while standing near this place.
Stories I'd already read: -Click-Clack the Rattlebag -The Sleeper and the Spindle -Feminine Endings
I think this book falls into the category of just not really my thing. There are some books of China Miéville that I have really loved - Embassytown bI think this book falls into the category of just not really my thing. There are some books of China Miéville that I have really loved - Embassytown being my favorite so far. I think there was less going on in that world, and because of that, characters were free to tell more of a story. In this novel, there are so many creatures and places and intrigue to describe, it was hard to settle in to any of it in an enjoyable way. I think I would have really liked the reluctant librarian hostage as unlikable as she is, if I had just spent more time with her in the library. I was interested in her understanding (and confusion) with some of the men but many of those storylines fell flat in favor of the action in the story. So some of the time there wasn't enough action, some of the time it was a focus right when I was starting to care about the rest of it.
The nice thing about Miéville is that every book is so different, that not exactly enjoying this won't deter me from trying future books. I'm not sure I'd return to Bas-Lag/New Crobuzon, but perhaps another universe.
I read this because it was a pick for one of my book clubs, where we meet in a virtual space. I can't wait to see the costumes!...more
Great adaptation of this book! While Adam feels like the focus in the book and audiobook, this seemed to better feature the angel/demon duo, kind of aGreat adaptation of this book! While Adam feels like the focus in the book and audiobook, this seemed to better feature the angel/demon duo, kind of a sad end to a very civil war, soon to end with Armageddon.
Still too many uses of the word ineffable, but I think that's a joke....more
It was an interesting experience to reread this book, because I remembered nothing about the plot or characters, just the world itself.
In the introducIt was an interesting experience to reread this book, because I remembered nothing about the plot or characters, just the world itself.
In the introduction the CBS Radio production of Brave New World in the mid 1950s, Aldous Huxley (serving as narrator) indicates that he meant the book as a warning about what would happen with our society if we continued on the path of consumerism and technological advance to the detriment of our humanity. He uses the term "negative utopia," and twenty years after the publication thought he had overestimated the number of years it would take us to get there - the novel was set 800 years into the future, and 20 years later, he decided it may be more like 200. He is very stern in this recording, a prophet of warning.
I think this time around I was struck most by the debate about happiness. Is happiness truly the greatest pursuit? Or should it not be the "first thing?" (subtle C.S. Lewis reference, booyah)
In the world of BNW:
"You can’t make tragedies without social instability. The world’s stable now. People are happy; they get what they want, and they never want what they can’t get. They’re well off; they’re safe; they’re never ill; they’re not afraid of death; they’re blissfully ignorant of passion and old age; they’re plagued with no mothers or fathers; they’ve got no wives, or children, or lovers to feel strongly about; they’re so conditioned that they practically can’t help behaving as they ought to behave. And if anything should go wrong, there’s soma."
Conditioned to only want what you can have, and if that's not enough, a mood-altering drug to balance you out. That's the world of BNW, until it is disrupted by John the Savage and a few Alpha males who long for things their society is not set up for - one desires isolation and one desires poetry.
Women are resigned to "engaging" with men on a regular basis, pregnancy is simulated to cheer them up, birth control is something they are conditioned to do, and marriage and other long term relationships are considered pornographic. The greatest compliment a man can pay a woman is to say she is "pneumatic." But if this is a negative utopia, perhaps Huxley knew that increasing the number of castes, and keeping women from the top, would only be a part of the calm but controlling world he feared.
I wish Huxley would have written a novel set on one of the islands where the outliers are sent. It seems like the conversations and advancement of ideas in those places would have been more interesting than the rinse-repeat-condition universe of The World State. ...more
I picked this from my bookshelves (one of the many to-read) to take on a trip to the Bahamas, and ended up reading most of it on the ship. The premiseI picked this from my bookshelves (one of the many to-read) to take on a trip to the Bahamas, and ended up reading most of it on the ship. The premise is interesting - a woman's father dies and as she mourns and hits menopause, her old "finding" abilities start coming back. Items from her childhood start reappearing (often dropping from the sky, but also an entire cashew orchard) and then a little boy washes up on shore.
I liked the setting although the island, Dolorosse, is imagined. The language throughout has a Haitian patois to it, and that alongside the description of the landscape and food makes it feel like a real place. But I liked the place far more than the characters. I sense you are supposed to dislike the main character Calamity but the rest of the people in the novel are a bit unknown to us, leaving me just with the character I didn't much like.
I saved this book to read until I was on a trip to Florida, so it had been about six months since reading book #2 in this trilogy. At first a few of tI saved this book to read until I was on a trip to Florida, so it had been about six months since reading book #2 in this trilogy. At first a few of the details that are referenced were specifics I had forgotten, but it made more sense as I went on.
There are some answers in this book, some of what I was expecting, some that was surprising and more disturbing. A very good finish to the trilogy and I was glad to read all three in one year. I know this was an impossible feat but I wish more trilogies were published this close together!
Something about VanderMeer's writing really creeps into my head. I must have read this too late at night after wandering a remote Florida island, because I woke up shouting with visions of (view spoiler)[ time-traveling, space alien atemporal whales (hide spoiler)] in my head. But that is why I read-in-place, trying to pick books that match the places I travel. Can you match Area X?
"This island is about fourteen miles long, six broad, and forty in circumference, containing what I would estimate as about eight-four square miles or more than fifty thousand acres. The pine-and-oak forest comprises most of the interior, sprawling down toward the shore on the landward side, but the side facing the sea has been assaulted by storms, and there you will find mostly scrub and moss and gnarled bushes."
"You are only partly alive. We can help you more than you can imagine."
I had never heard of this book before it was selected for an SFF Audio Readalon"You are only partly alive. We can help you more than you can imagine."
I had never heard of this book before it was selected for an SFF Audio Readalong discussion, and I think I liked it more after we talked about it for an hour or so.
There is a lot to think about here. The novel is in four sections and quite a bit of it has hints of other dystopias - the community with scheduled sex and neighbor-reporting is similar to We, the drugging of society feels like Brave New World, and I was completely expecting it to go in the direction of the ending of 1984.
This book won the Prometheus Award from the Libertarian Futurist Society for examining concepts of freedom. Hmm, I have read 18 books from their list. What does that mean?
But that may be the most interesting part of the novel, or at least what I was thinking about while reading it. Many people rate the book low because of the rape scene, and while it feels gratuitous in the moment, I actually think it is our first huge clue that Chip is a questionable hero. What is he going to do if he overthrows Uni? Would he be someone to follow? And what is worse, knowing the truth or living a passive, expected life?
And one little quote, one I felt very deeply considering recent events:
"We’ve got to fight, not adjust. Fight, fight, fight." ...more
I'm not much of a superhero comic book reader. I've seen a few volumes of Batwoman, and I've read other graphic novels, and okay if Sandman counts, I'I'm not much of a superhero comic book reader. I've seen a few volumes of Batwoman, and I've read other graphic novels, and okay if Sandman counts, I've read all of that.
But other than a few episodes of Agent Carter, I am willfully ignorant of the Marvel universe. Ms. Marvel, Kamala Khan, mentions that Captain Marvel hasn't been spotted in a few years once she becomes Ms. Marvel.
Vol. 1: No Normal is very much about Kamala becoming Ms. Marvel, with a lot of information on her (very conservative, also Muslim) family. Less than five stars because I pretty much expect future volumes to be better, now that the groundwork has been laid.
I'm looking forward to hearing G. Willow Wilson speak at ACRL, and I'll bring this along in hopes that she can sign it!
The art is decent, although not breathtaking. And there are several cells where detail is lacking. I just never understood why that happens, when characters become more like color blobs. That's probably a stylistic preference, and I prefer beauty and detail....more
I'm still wrapping my head around this book, so consider this review a (possibly perpetual) work in progress. My book club discusses it on Monday so II'm still wrapping my head around this book, so consider this review a (possibly perpetual) work in progress. My book club discusses it on Monday so I might have more to add at that point.
It is thanks to two Gene Wolfe fans that I have read this book - one for selecting it and one for providing useful resources to help me understand it better. And of course as with anything by Gene Wolfe I've ever read, now that I know more, I feel like to really appreciate this book I would start again from the beginning.
This is different from some of the other books by Wolfe that I have read, those combining science fiction and fantasy, in a far future post-tech landscape. These instead are set in the historical ancient world and rely heavily on actual texts, plus fantastical elements of the mythology. Having only a basic basic knowledge of these ancient times and zero experience with the texts referenced, I may not have had all the background that would have made this an even more enjoyable experience. Gene Wolfe is for smart readers.
The basic premise is that of Latro, a mercenary with a memory loss problem. Because he can only retain about a half of a day at a time, he is constantly transcribing what is happening so he can refer back to it. You really only know that he is not a local, and there is so much between the lines that I point you again to the external resources to understand the book!
The part that will be intriguing to discuss with the book club is whether or not Latro is seeing what he thinks he is seeing. Oh and the ending.
"Pinadros shook his head as if in wonder. 'Is it because you can't remember the past that you're so wise, Latro?'" (104)
I read this because it is October and Zelazny is on my reading goals for the year. It is a clever tale from Snuff the dog in the month of October, andI read this because it is October and Zelazny is on my reading goals for the year. It is a clever tale from Snuff the dog in the month of October, and his pal Jack. There are talking animals and all the science fiction and fantasy tropes of classic literature, and some conclusions the reader needs to draw on his or her own. It was a light read with great drawings and I enjoyed it.
It was very Octoberish with bits like this: "I breathed the smells of woodsmoke, loam, and rotting windfall apples, still morning-rimed, perhaps, in orchard's shade, and saw a high, calling flock V-ing its way to the south."
And clever with bits like this: "You wander these lands in dreams of catnappery?"...more
I've had this sitting on my NetGalley list for months and decided to read it in a quiet afternoon.
With all the books on clones and robots out there, II've had this sitting on my NetGalley list for months and decided to read it in a quiet afternoon.
With all the books on clones and robots out there, I can't say there is much to recommend this one. It focuses on a genetically engineered scientist trying to understand what it means to be human. A lot of the future setting makes no sense - genetically engineered computer-beings make up the majority of the workforce but there are still bookstores, and honeybees play a major part (they would be extinct by then!). The interesting bits are glossed over and implied while a lot of time is spent inside the bot's head, defining words and processing possibilities. It just sounded better than it ended up....more
I got about 1/4 in and decided I wouldn't finish. I liked the first novel of the author's previous trilogy, Bitter Seeds, but never went back to the oI got about 1/4 in and decided I wouldn't finish. I liked the first novel of the author's previous trilogy, Bitter Seeds, but never went back to the other books in that series. I think it is for similar reasons that I don't think I'll finish this one. Ian Tregillis very creatively weaves automatons and clockwork people into historical events. The previous trilogy looked at World War II, and The Alchemy Wars are set more during Louis XIV. If you are interested in how issues of mechanical beings would fare during this era, you would probably love this book. Solidly not for me, but maybe for others....more
I found this on my parents' bookshelves and decided to read it. It reminds me of a lot of the turn-of-the"The love of knowledge is a kind of madness."
I found this on my parents' bookshelves and decided to read it. It reminds me of a lot of the turn-of-the-century science fiction that had more to do with imagination than science. After all, all you really need to take with you to another planet to survive is a decent fur coat!
Still, I enjoyed the beautiful descriptions of the aliens - the cultures and beliefs and language systems were intriguing; and the planet - the fauna and the layers really lit my head up. I kind of wish Lewis hadn't made it a planet we know, because then I would have been ALL IN. It's just so off from the reality that it doesn't make any sense. I might read the other two books in this trilogy some day, but I'm not in any hurry to do it. ...more
I received a copy of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This was a fun, quick read about an advice columnist in dystopian America. TI received a copy of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This was a fun, quick read about an advice columnist in dystopian America. The government steals back her stolen chickens during a "negotiation" to get her to work as a propaganda artist for zombie-free America. I liked the vivid world-building in this novella, just wanted more of the story! I had not heard of this author before, but I'll be back.
The timing of this story was terrific because I was on my first day of three weeks of zero internet access, and in the story, the Internet gets turned off! Dystopia is now.
The writing makes it a fun read, and I could picture it as a tv show because it is snappy. Here are a few examples:
"Maybe she's doing something like good cop, bad cop?" "You need two cops for that." "Looks like she's an overachiever."
"I open the package and look inside: a gluey glop of hot-as-hell contents, chunks of almost identifiable foods swimming in the sludge. It's the perfect meal to eat while watching a terrorist act unfold."...more
Abandoning 212 pages in. At first I thought this was so much better than Saturn's Children - fast-paced, interesting story, funny at times, creative sAbandoning 212 pages in. At first I thought this was so much better than Saturn's Children - fast-paced, interesting story, funny at times, creative setting within the freyaverse, pre-established. I was really into it for 95 pages. Then the author decided to stop writing the story and instead, went on and on about the economic system he'd created. He really wants the reader to understand his concept of Slow Money. I got it. I wanted to move on and tell me more during the story. But he kept stopping and giving mini lectures, and I just couldn't take it anymore.. It does take work to incorporate these details into your novel. Treating them as interludes does not make for an enjoyable reading experience. Unfortunately this repeating tendency masked my enjoyment of space mermaids when that should have been the coolest idea ever (my term.)
I'm hoping Ancillary Justice is better. I may have to call it off with space operas, Hugo nominees and all....more
This book defied my expectations at every turn. It is near-future but in two different times and locations. Mariama is in a caravan heading to EthiopiThis book defied my expectations at every turn. It is near-future but in two different times and locations. Mariama is in a caravan heading to Ethiopia across land, and Meena is heading to Ethiopia from India, across the Arabian Sea, on a floating road made of metallic hydrogen. Interesting concepts for the near-future, and nice to have African and Indian characters and settings. The writing is my type - emotional, internal dialogue, pondering greater meanings.
Everyone keeps calling it sci-fi, I imagine because of the brief technology mentions, but I think it fits more in fantasy - people who may or may not be human/gods/ghosts, the quest/journey, the lesson, the good vs. evil, the superhuman moments - feels like fantasy to me!
I listened to this in audio and the two readers, Dioni Collins and Nazneen Contractor, do a brilliant job. I listened to the last disc three times because I'm not entirely sure what happened. I'm still not. (view spoiler)[Where did Djibouti go and is everyone insane? *smile* (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
I received a copy of this from NetGalley for free in exchange for an honest review.
I was intrigued by the description of this book, a post-apocalypticI received a copy of this from NetGalley for free in exchange for an honest review.
I was intrigued by the description of this book, a post-apocalyptic world where the main character works in an archive? Sounded interesting. In the end, I feel like the author tries to do too much at once - post-apocalypse plus crime plus grief plus a John Brunner media-saturated landscape. It reminded me of Stand on Zanzibar in the way everyone is assaulted by advertising and an abundance of information about every person they encounter, with the added twist of advertising that changes in reaction to a person's response. Porn and graphic violence in the media was also prevalent.
The trouble is, I'm not really sure what this has to do with the core story. I thought it was somehow linked to the destruction of Pittsburgh, but instead it just seems to be the attempt to represent the future and serve as a convenient way to link most of the important clues to solving the crime. And while the survivors of Pittsburgh seem to be greatly effected by its destruction, the rest of the world seems somewhat zombie-like. I never really figured out, is this the world or is this a result to tragedy?
More real to John Dominic Blaxton (who rarely is just referred to as John) is his dead wife, who he is able to spend time with in a recreated virtual space. The virtual reality has been built from actual recorded data (the vast network of surveillance) and added to based on memories, recalled info, and so on. He spends a lot of his waking hours reliving moments with her and trying to feel close to her.
He also is investigating a woman's dead body who seems to be disappearing from the archive, and ends up wrapped up in a crime family of sorts that threatens his most important memory. He's hired as an outside researcher after having to leave his archival job (drugs), one of those situations where the police are no use (necessary for him to be necessary, of course.)
"...The police don't have the resources. Besides, they don't prioritize this as a missing persons case or anything of the sort but rather a data mismanagement claim or at worst cybervandalism or a hacking charge. Digital graffiti, that sort of thing... I've searched on my own, but she's vanishing. I have photographs - I know she exists. Existed-"
The author has created some challenges for himself. In order to make a greater dramatic arc for John Dominic Blaxton, the reveals have to be absurdly violent and gruesome for them even to register for the reader after being exposed to the stream of porn and blood and gossip that the average person in his world encounters every day. To me, that event was not that startling. To me, the most sorrowful moment happened earlier in the story, when his wife suddenly isn't available to him. The poignancy of that story gets covered up by the crime romp.
There's not a lot to live for in this world, but I couldn't help but think the archive was not doing much to allow John Dominic Blaxton to move on. There didn't seem to be a lot to live for otherwise. Early on he even admits this - "I can't fathom what happiness might mean anymore - it seems like luxury to someone whose life feels like a lead-lined discomfort... I don't seek out happiness, just pockets of alleviation - a drowning man sipping at bubbles of air."
I really enjoyed the world-building part of this novel, and the use of existing technology in a more saturated way (adaware, augmented reality, virtual reality). It's just the crime element that I didn't connect to. I wonder what it would have been like as a short story, because I was yearning for a tighter reading experience....more
I came across this book randomly while pulling other books, and when the cover proclaimed Leslie What as a Nebula winner, I was surprised I hadn't eveI came across this book randomly while pulling other books, and when the cover proclaimed Leslie What as a Nebula winner, I was surprised I hadn't ever heard of her. This volume of stories includes the 1999 Nebula-winning "The Cost of Doing Business," which centers around the concept of a society that allows surrogate victims.
In general I found the stories to revolve around babies, relationships, pregnancies, parents, and love that transcends death and transformation. There is a twinge of fantasy or slight improbability in most stories, but other than in The Wereslut of Avenue A and The Jellyfish Man Keeps A-Rolling, the fantasy isn't the main point of the story. It's the relationships.
While there are too many pregnancy story lines for my tastes, I still felt these stories were worthwhile. They are well-crafted and the author is not afraid of a shocking idea.
I got a review copy of this from the publisher and accidentally back-burnered it for a bit, but what a pleasure this compilation has been to read! OnlI got a review copy of this from the publisher and accidentally back-burnered it for a bit, but what a pleasure this compilation has been to read! Only an editor like Jonathan Strahan could ride the newest waves of science fiction and fantasy, following threads of new settings (southeast Asia and Iceland), new trends (increasing AI and post-human topics), and still find so much variety both in story content and author background. This is an impressive collection, most of which I had not come across. Highly recommended.
My favorite stories were: “The Sleeper and the Spindle” by Neil Gaiman "Cave and Julia" by M. John Harrison “The Promise of Space” by James Patrick Kelly “Sing” by Karin Tidbeck
I have brief impressions of each story if you click through (not really spoilers) (view spoiler)[
“Some Desperado”, Joe Abercrombie I may be the only person not enamored with Abercrombie's universe, and Shy is a character from the First Law set of books. She is featured in the novel,Red Country, and is a tough woman. I approve of strong women, but I seem to have an impossible block in reading western tinged fantasy, so this is jut resoundingly not for me. It's probably for you.
“Zero for Conduct" by Greg Egan An aspiring chemical engineer living in exile from Afghanistan finds a solution to the power grid problem.
“Effigy Nights” by Yoon Ha Lee A beautiful story about invaders on a moon planet, with writing that made me think of Valente. When they come, they are offered "Wine pressed from rare books of stratagems and aged in barrels set in orbit around a certain red star. Crystals extracted from the nervous systems of philosopher-beasts that live in colonies upon hollow asteroids. Perfume symphonies infused into exquisite fractal tapestries."
“Rosary and Goldenstar” by Geoff Ryman No good, tries to be clever but fails for my purposes. Astronomy and Shakespeare and references to things, rather exhausting.
“The Sleeper and the Spindle” by Neil Gaiman Brilliant fairy tale retelling of the neighboring kingdoms inhabited by Snow White and Sleeping Beauty.
“Cave and Julia” by M. John Harrison Halfway through 2014 and this is the first I've read of Harrison, one of my reading goals for the year. How much have I been missing? I understand this is a return to a world from a previous story or novel, where everything contradicts and the landscape betrays. I might read it four more times and not fully grasp it, but I enjoyed it.
“The Herons of Mer de l’Ouest” by M Bennardo Giant bird like creatures in the woods, in a diary form.
“Water” by Ramez Naam AI's taking over the advertising of packaged foods. Up next: the world. Related to Nexus, always love this author. "Nothing vexes an AI so much as needing approval for its plans from slow, clumsy, irrational bags of meat."
“The Truth of Fact, the Truth of Feeling” by Ted Chiang "Our memories are private autobiographies." "People are made of stories. Our memories are not the impartial accumulation of every second we’ve lived; they’re the narrative that we assembled out of selected moments. Which is why, even when we’ve experienced the same events as other individuals, we never constructed identical narratives: the criteria used for selecting moments were different for each of us, and a reflection of our personalities. Each of us noticed the details that caught our attention and remembered what was important to us, and the narratives we built shaped our personalities in turn."
“The Ink Readers of Doi Saket” by Thomas Olde Heuvelt I would have eventually read this story anyway, because it is a Hugo nominee, but I'm glad I had the chance ahead of time. This is a story about a village in Thailand, and a celebration of wishes, and how they come true. Lovely language.
“Cherry Blossoms on the River of Souls” by Richard Parks Restlessness can lead you to scary places.
“Rag and Bone” by Priya Sharma "Their hands drip with diamonds and the blood of the slaving classes. They lick their fingers clean with slavering tongues."
“The Book Seller” by Lavie Tidhar Another author I kept meaning to read, and here he is. A love story (?) between a Strigoi and a bookseller. With robots and genetic engineering and dusty tomes in Hebrew. I would have liked a novel-length version.
"The Sun and I” by K J Parker Home-made religion and the aftermath.
“The Promise of Space” by James Patrick Kelly A writer tries to connect with her Marsnaut husband, who because of severe damage to his brain and body can only access shared memories through an AI augment. Ends abruptly but only because the author drops you into the middle of a few typical days of what this is like. Sad.
“The Master Conjurer”, Charlie Jane Anders "Magic is not a scalable solution.”
“The Pilgrim and the Angel” by E. Lily Yu While this doesn't have the gorgeous language of The Cartographer Wasps and the Anarchist Bees, I love how quickly Yu can pull me into her stories.
“Entangled” by Ian R Macleod Very interesting concept where most of humanity is "entangled" but Martha is Mindblind, on the edges of society becaus of a brain injury making her unsusceptible to what is really a virus. "The entangled live in a sea of trust."
“Fade to Gold” by Benjanun Sriduangkaew This author came out of nowhere (from my perspective) and is a nominee for this year's John W. Campbell award. I this story a female soldier becomes a traveling companion to the single woman left in a Thai village. It introduces a ghostlike creature unique to Southeast Asia that I hadn't heard of!
“Selkie Stories are for Losers” by Sofia Samatar This is one of the Hugo nominated stories, so I had read it preciously. A modern day selkie story.
“In Metal, In Bone” by An Owomoyela I'm not sure i understood the ending of this one but it seems to be a story about the futility or endlessness of war. Benine is a psychic who can read information from personal objects, including bones.
“Kormak the Lucky” by Eleanor Arnason An elfin journey from Iceland to Ireland. I loved the unique story in this and this historical Icelandic details. Warrior poet!
“Sing” by Karin Tidbeck A completely strange and wonderful story, available on Tor.com, about a woman (alien I think) who can't hear speak when the moon rises and the biologist who falls in love with her.i downloaded Jagannath a while ago and really want to get back to it. More, please!
“Social Services” by Madeline Ashby A near-future AI-filled world and one creepy child.
“The Road of Needles” by Caitlín R Kiernan I've had Kiernan on my radar and "must read" list for two years now, but this Red Riding Hood retelling was not the best first experience. It was disjointed and confusing. I like the concept but didn't feel it came together successfully.
“Mystic Falls” by Robert Reed Cyphers and who can you trust?
“The Queen of Night’s Aria” by Ian McDonald The Maestro and the Accompanist travel to perform on the edge of interplanetary war on Mars.
“The Irish Astronaut” by Val Nolan "Space is hungry, Padre. This business, it devours people. I’ve been devoured by it." (hide spoiler)]["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>["br"]>...more
What would you do if you knew the world was ending in six months? Hank Palace decides to keep doing his job as a police detective in Concord, NH.
TheWhat would you do if you knew the world was ending in six months? Hank Palace decides to keep doing his job as a police detective in Concord, NH.
The first third and last chapter of this book were my favorite parts - the world, the crisis, the lack of seeming hope. And then it ended with some questions I'm interested in and hints of other things going on that I'm unclear on, so I will probably read more books in this series.
The rest of the book is very much a crime, police procedural novel. Well written and the characters are more interesting than in a regular crime novel because of the pending doom, but still a crime novel. And crime novels aren't really my thing. It didn't make me want to put the book aside or anything, so I still enjoyed it.
A few bits: "The end of the world changes everything, from a law-enforcement perspective."
"People's inability to face up to this thing is worse than the thing, it really is."
We're discussing this on the SFF Audio podcast this weekend, so once it posts I'll link to it....more
Tamahome brought this book to Episode 5 of the Reading Envy podcast, so I tried it in a round of speed-dating my books. Ultimately it wasn't really myTamahome brought this book to Episode 5 of the Reading Envy podcast, so I tried it in a round of speed-dating my books. Ultimately it wasn't really my style, as I'm just never able to get into military anything, aging cyborg or not. I know the author writes in a lot of styles, so I will probably try something else by her someday....more