Archive for the Books Category

Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee

Posted in Books, Reviews with tags , on March 20, 2017 by davidnm2009

I’m currently reading Ninefox Gambit, by Yoon Ha Lee.

I can’t spoil the ending, as I haven’t got there yet. But here are some thoughts…

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Slow Bullets, by Alistair Reynolds

Posted in Books, Reviews, SF with tags , , on February 20, 2017 by davidnm2009

This is a fairly short, and rather enigmatic, work. It’s as much horror story as it is science fiction.

A few thoughts under the cut…

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Revenger, by Alistair Reynolds

Posted in Books, Reviews, SF, Uncategorized with tags , on December 25, 2016 by davidnm2009

I very recently finished Revenger by Alistair Reynolds. I can highly recommend this novel.

Reynolds at the top of his game is an awesome sight to behold. This novel is no disappointment.

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Fables, Book One, by Bill Willingham

Posted in Books, Reviews, Uncategorized with tags , on July 6, 2016 by davidnm2009

After playing “The Wolf Among Us”, I gained the opportunity to read the first book of Bill Willingham’s Fables series.

The basic conceit is that the former inhabitants of the fairy tale Homelands have been forced to migrate to our ‘real’ world. Most of them are living in either New York, or out on an isolated reservation called the Farm. The stories cover the issues faced by the Fables as they try to carve out some place for themselves inside Mundane society. The roles the Fables find themselves playing can be quite different from what their previous lives have conditioned them to expect…

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Foundation and Earth, by Isaac Asimov

Posted in Books, Reviews, Uncategorized with tags , on June 5, 2016 by davidnm2009

In this review, I’m going to admit to a controversial opinion. You see, unlike a lot of the fandom, I actually like some bits of this book. In many respect, F&E is a frustrating work. It has glimmerings of a genuine epic. It could have been so much more.

Instead, we got what happens at the end. To be honest, the whole book is a bit like Asimov’s version of Mass Effect 3: the potential is there, and bits of it even shine through here and there, but the end result falls flat.

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Safely You Deliver, by Graydon Saunders

Posted in Books, Reviews, Uncategorized with tags , on April 18, 2016 by davidnm2009

“Safely You Deliver” is the third, and most recently-released, instalment in Graydon Saunders’ Commonweal series.

The world of the Commonweal is ancient, and its history is sodden in magic. The Power, as it’s called, has altered everything, from the cultures and economies of the world to the very people themselves. “Human” is a term whose meaning has become rather loose, encompassing as it now does a range of post-human species. Most of these species were deliberately engineered by various Sauron-wannabes to serve as some variety of forced labour. It’s fair to say that it’s not a happy place…

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The Birthgrave, by Tanith Lee

Posted in Books, Reviews, SF, Uncategorized with tags , on December 4, 2015 by davidnm2009

The Birthgrave is a challenging work; if it were published today, it would definitely be considered dark fantasy. However, it is also thought-provoking and poses some hard-to-answer questions about the topics of collective guilt and innocence – just how responsible are we for the sins of those who are like us?

For its time of publication, in the mid ’70s, it was also rather subversive. You see, at its heart, The Birthgrave is a journey of self-discovery, and it has the singular conceit that a woman’s experience is valid and worth considering. Even in today’s SFF, that can be regrettably-rare.

For purposes of trigger warnings, etc., I’m filing this review under “choose not to warn”. Frankly, given the state of the world of The Birthgrave, TWs are probably redundant. I’m also going to change the usual review structure and have a singular “commentary” section, as the “liked/problematic” contrast doesn’t really work in this context. Be aware that the needle will be over on the “problematic” side of the dial a lot during this review.

So, without further digression, here’s the review…

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