Review of The Queen of Sorrow by Sarah Beth Durst

The Queen of Sorrow by Sarah Beth Durst. ★★★1/2 The Queen of Sorrow is the final book in Durst’s Queens of Renthia trilogy, which you should really read in order. If you’re not familiar with the books, they’re fantasy where humans struggle to survive in a world dominated by cruel and capricious nature spirits. The characters are adults…

Review of Rebel Seoul by Axie Oh

Rebel Seoul by Axie Oh. ★★★1/2 I’ve had a lot of bad luck with YA dystopia, but Rebel Seoul turned out to be a gem of the genre. In Neo Seoul, everyone is drafted into the military upon coming of age. Lee Jaewon’s escaped his past as a gang member in the slums of Old Seoul and now attends a…

Review of Artificial Condition by Martha Wells

Artificial Condition by Martha Wells. ★★★★ If you haven’t read Martha Wells’ All Systems Red, you’re really missing out. This novella series follows Murderbot, a delightfully snarky and anxiety-ridden SecUnit who’s hacked its governor module and gained autonomy over its own actions. Artificial Condition is the second novella in the series, and I would suggest reading in order. Also, this…

Review of Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh

Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories by Vandana Singh. ★★★★ Since I loved Vandana Singh’s short story collection The Woman Who Thought She Was a Planet and Other Stories, I made the decision to read Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories. And what a wonderful decision it was! Ambiguity Machines and Other Stories contains fourteen stories and novelettes. These stories are futuristic…

Wyrd and Wonder: Review of Armistice by Lara Elena Donnelly

Armistice by Lara Elena Donnelly. ★★★★ In this stunning sequel, Lara Elena Donnelly returns to the shadowy world of her debut novel Amberlough. Be forewarned, I can’t entirely avoid spoilers for Amberlough. Armistice takes place three years after Amberlough, when the Ospies (a fascist regime) have succeeded in taking over Gedda. Armistice follows three expats from Gedda in a nearby country, Porachis: Aristide, Cordelia,…

Wyrd and Wonder: Review of Vicious by V.E. Schwab

Vicious by V.E. Schwab. ★★★1/2 If every villain is the hero of his own story, is every hero the villain of someone else’s story? In Eli, Victor recognized a shared darkness. The college roommates started working together, researching into the origins of extraordinary abilities. A clear pattern emerges: supernatural abilities develop after near death experiences. From theory,…

Review of Invisible Planets: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation

Invisible Planets: An Anthology of Contemporary Chinese SF in Translation. Edited by Ken Liu. ★★★★ I don’t read nearly enough works in translation, so when I heard about Invisible Planets, I knew it was something I needed to read. And overall, I thought it was a pretty great collection! Invisible Planets introduces seven different contemporary Chinese authors, all…

Review of I Met a Traveller in an Antique Land by Connie Willis

I Met a Traveller in an Antique Land by Connie Willis. ★★ I requested this novella on Netgalley because of how much I’d enjoyed some of Connie Willis’s other work, namely To Say Nothing of the Dog and The Doomsday Book. That turned out to be a mistake. Jim is in New York to talk to publishers about a…

Review of Head On by John Scalzi

Head On by John Scalzi. ★★★★ While Head On is a sequel to Scalzi’s earlier science fiction novel, Lock In , it’s a stand alone mystery story. Still, I would suggest starting with Lock In so you can get to know the world and characters before diving into Head On. FBI Agent Chris Shane is watching a live game of hilketa, where players…

Review of Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys

Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys. ★★★★ What a lovely novel. It took me a while to get into Winter Tide, but once I did, I enjoyed it immensely. Aphra and her brother Marsh are the only survivor of the government’s 1928 Innsmouth. In the desert camps, Aphra watched family, friends and neighbors die, far from the sea and the…

Review of The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang. ★★★★★ TW: self harm, sexual violence, war crimes I loved this book. I cannot get over how amazing it is. The best comparison I can think of is N.K. Jemisin’s The Fifth Season, which really says something, doesn’t it? Rin is an orphaned peasant girl in the backwater Rooster Province, but despite all…

Review of The Heartreader’s Secret by Kate McIntyre

The Heartreader’s Secret by Kate McIntyre. ★★★★ The Heartreader’s Secret is the third in Kate McIntyre’s Faraday Files series, a queer fantasy mystery series. I do suggest reading the books in order, so starting with The Deathsniffer’s Assistant. I don’t think I can fully avoid spoilers for the previous two books in this review, so head on over to The…