Review of Atlas Alone by Emma Newman

Atlas Alone by Emma Newman. ★★★ I ultimately found Atlas Alone to be disappointing. Part of this is that the previous three books have set a high bar, the other part is that I wasn’t happy with the novel’s asexual representation. The majority of this review is devoted to Atlas Alone‘s depiction of asexuality. Atlas Alone is the fourth novel…

Review of Middlegame by Seanan McGuire

Middlegame by Seanan McGuire. ★★★1/2 TW: Attempted suicide I don’t know quite what to think of Middlegame. I read the first 60% or so in one huge burst… but then it took me forever to finish the last part of the book. An alchemist named Reed has a plan to rule the world. All he has to do…

Review of Impostors by Scott Westerfeld

Impostors by Scott Westerfeld. ★★★1/2 I grew up reading Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies trilogy. Legit, I was in 5th grade when I first read the books! They were a substantial part of my childhood, so when I heard that Westerfeld was releasing a new YA novel set in the same universe, I had to read it. Frey lives a…

New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction by People of Color edited by Nisi Shawl

New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction of Color edited by Nisi Shawl. ★★★ I was excited about the anthology New Suns, but I ended up disappointed. This anthology has so many great authors. Unfortunately, the stories never reached the level of “great.” It’s a risk you run with every anthology since not even wonderful authors hit it out of…

Review of Transcendent: The Year’s Best Transgender Speculative Fiction

Transcendent: The Year’s Best Transgender Speculative Fiction edited by K.M. Szpara. ★★★1/2 This inaugural anthology collects the best transgender science fiction and fantasy short stories of 2015. I’ve been wanting to pick it up ever since I saw the author line-up; there’s a ton of great trans authors working in science fiction and fantasy, and this…

Review of Failure to Communicate by Kaia Sønderby

Failure to Communicate by Kaia Sønderby. ★★★1/2 I don’t read enough self-published books. I get so caught up in the new release cycle of traditional publishing, that indie gems tend to slip under the radar. Such is the case with Failure to Communicate, a delightful sci-fi first contact novel with an autistic, bisexual protagonist and a subtle…

Review of The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo

The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo. ★★★1/2 The Night Tiger is a wonderful blend of literary fiction and genre fiction — involving everything from historical fiction to magical realism. The Night Tiger centers around the intertwined lives of Ren and Ji Lin, who both live in 1931 Malay. Ren is a houseboy who served a Western doctor… before…

Review of No Man of Woman Born by Ana Mardoll

No Man of Woman Born by Ana Mardoll. ★★★ Like most short story collections, No Man of Woman Born is uneven. I really enjoyed a couple of stories and others were “eh.” No Man of Woman Born is a fantasy short story collection featuring trans and nonbinary protagonists. The majority of stories in the collection deal with gender-specific prophecies…

Breaking the Bubble: Non-SFF Reading in January

Hello everyone! I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this here, but I’m currently interning for a literary agent who represents mostly mysteries, thrillers, romance, and women’s fiction. Since I’m reading tons of query letters manuscript samples, I figured I should also read some more books outside sci-fi and fantasy to get a feel for different…

Review of A People’s Future of the United States

A People’s Future of the United States edited by Victor LaValle and John Joseph Adams. ★★★ A People’s Future of the United States responds to the current American political climate by bringing together twenty-five authors of marginalized identities to write short stories set in a future version of the United States. Many of these stories are depressing,…