#review #books #fantasy 

The Craft Sequence is a series of six loosely related and very entertaining novels. Even if the beginning can be awkward on some aspects, it goes from strength to strength and also benefits from a great rep of female characters, characters of colour and QUILTBAG characters. themiddleshelf.org/reviews/max

#review #books #scifi #crime 

Who killed the clones? You'll know it if you read Mur Lafferty's closed door mystery set on a space ship: themiddleshelf.org/reviews/mur

Currently reading: An Unkindness of Ghosts by Solomon. In a sense, it's excellent: scifi, generation ship used as a metaphor for slavery and racism, with very good QUILTBAG representation. But at the same time, it is very frustrating because as I read I see a thousand little details that are snags that shouldn't be here. As I said, very frustrating: it feels like a badly polished diamond.

Just read or currently reading:
- Three Parts Dead, Two Serpents Rise, Full Fathom Five by Gladstone. Good, solid & entertaining in a very original world. Plus point: books can be read independently. Will review in a couple of weeks.
- Pseudotooth by Holloway. Weird, Gothic, sometimes slightly nauseating because of the awful characters but very engrossing despite a disappointing last line. Will review in October.

Now starting An Unkindness of Ghosts by Solomon & I have high hopes.

#review #scifi #books 

Review of Leila, a dystopian novel written by Prayaag Akbar. Set in India, it tells of a mother trying to find her daughter in a city where the walls between communities aren't metaphorical. Highly recommended.
themiddleshelf.org/reviews/pra
Might be difficult to find: please check with your favourite indie bookstore, I'm sure they could order it or you can get it from Amazon via a seller in India.

Currently reading:
- The Vagrant by Newman was just a constant stream of "nope, nope, nope" and I gave it up. As I said the word "half-breed" felt like an aggression to me (used a lot in the first chapters) & it felt like Iron Dream by Spinrad without being a parody.
- Satan's Reach by Brown. The character showed the survival skills of a dodo before an improbable escape from a formidable foe within the first 3 chapters. Nope.
- Three Parts Dead by Gladstone. Definitely enjoying that so far!

Currently reading:
- The Vagrant by Peter Newman. Nope, nope, nope. I'm at page 41 and it seems to be so far a mix between The New Sun by Gene Wolfe (which I hate) and Iron Dream by Spinrad (though it's definitely not a parody). The word "half-breed" on the first page definitely raised my hackles & it kept on this way. I'll give another 20 pages or so before giving it up. It's very weird considering he's the spouse of E. Newman & she's definitely not into that cr¨*p.

#review #specfic #book 

The Rift by Nina Allan: is it an alien abduction story or just a disappearance story? The story of a con and a delusion or the story of an alternate world? What it certainly is, is a story about sibling relationships.
themiddleshelf.org/reviews/nin

#review #fantasy #book 

My updated of The Broken Earth trilogy by N.K. Jemisin, now that I've finished The Stone Sky, the last volume of it. Entirely spoiler free: themiddleshelf.org/reviews/n-k

Currently reading and recently read:
- The Stone Sky by Jemisin. A little less good than the previous two but still head & shoulders above a lot of what I've read recently.
- Leila by Akbar. Excellent, will review it by early September.
- Six Wakes by Lafferty. Very enjoyable murder mystery in space. Will review it in September too.

On my TBR next:
- The Vagrant by Newman. Heard excellent things about it.
- Tomoe Gozen by Salmonson. Yeah, I'm just 2 decades late for this one, but still!

#review #books #scifi #apocalypse 

A classic apocalypse novel, but with a nice concept and great intertextuality games: Nod, by Adrian Barnes.
themiddleshelf.org/reviews/adr

The essential scifi and fantasy books since 1960 - A collaborative list.
themiddleshelf.org/while-we-we
Elaborated with the help of followers on Twitter (oops! Sorry, yes I'm also still there!) here are ten books per decade to catch up on the best and classics.

#books #review #scifi #fantasy 

A successful blend of and in The Prey of Gods, an action packed novel, set in South Africa, by Nicky Drayden.
themiddleshelf.org/reviews/nic

#review #books #fantasy #africanliterature 

A unique blend of political, racial and gender in this novel shortlisted for the first Nommo Awards: Blackass, by A. Igoni Barrett: themiddleshelf.org/reviews/a-i

The Fiyah Lit Mag editors had a roundtable as part of the Fireside Fiction #BlackSpecFic report today. firesidefiction.com/fiyah-roun

"Blackness is not mystical, black writers aren’t subpar, and we are not a monolith. There are histories to what we do, same as any other group of humans living on the planet, and to paint what we do as unfathomable or exotic enough to be “misunderstood” is just as limiting as claiming that it’s inferior."

Recently read (part 2) 

- Borne by J. Vandermeer. In the end, it was a lot déjà-vu and I honestly couldn't give a care for the characters' relationships.
- Infinite Ground by M. McInnes. More a study than an original novel, but a great take the deconstruction of character. Not really scifi though.
- Nod by A. Barnes. A classic apocalyptic novel but that reaches a very good level thanks to intertextuality & good characters.
- Three Parts Dead by M. Gladstone. Unfinished but I'll come back to it.

Recently read (part 1) 

- If Then, by M. De Abaitua. Cool idea but f. characters are generic, two lines are micro aggressions against QUILTBAG persons & too many unchallenged fascist tirades. And in the end, it falls flat.
- All our wrong todays, by E. Mastai. Poor rich white boy can never be as good as his dad wishes him to be & ends up breaking the world bc of time travel.
- Belt Three, J. Ayliff. Debut novel w/ some flaws but not too bad.

#Book #Review #Fantasy 

Review for the wonderful series, The Split Worlds, by Emma Newman. I loved it so much I read the five books in five days and I urge you to try it. Basically: tea, faes, multiverse and fight against patriarchy with amazing characters & great writing that just flows: themiddleshelf.org/reviews/emm

In which I rant a bit (part 2) 

... And Women spots. Sure, I do have to triage a bit, some things are better than others. But usually, I need to tries before I get a hit. These past 10 days, I had to read 7 books (seven!) before finding something. I think that publishers really allow a lot of mediocre works to be published just on the basis that because it's written by a white male, it'll pass. Guess what? With me, it doesn't and I'm tired of it.

In which I rant a bit (part 1) 

These past ten days, I've been desperately trying to find a book to review for the blog, for the white male spot (yes, I do quotas). Can you guess at the number of mediocre, when not right down cr*p books I read? And all trad. published! Whether it was just awkward to the one that had so many micro-agressions to QUILTBAG persons and/or women. The white male spot is always the hardest to fill. So. Many. Mediocre. Books! I don't have the same problems with the PoC &

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