September 2018 archive

Sep 28 2018

Swordspoint by Ellen Kushner

I hadn’t read Swordspoint in a long time – certainly not this decade, probably not this century – but it had stayed in my memory as one of three perfect books. At some point, I heard that there were two more novels that shared Swordspoint’s setting, one by Kushner and one she co-wrote with Delia Sherman. …

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Sep 23 2018

I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett

Late Discworld offers at least one great book before the end: I Shall Wear Midnight, the fourth Tiffany Aching novel. In contrast to all of the Discworld books aimed at adults from Monstrous Regiment onward (with the possible exception of Thud!), the story and conflicts in the Tiffany Aching stories arise from the characters themselves …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/23/i-shall-wear-midnight-by-terry-pratchett/

Sep 23 2018

The Price of Blood and Honor by Elizabeth Willey

Elizabeth Willey got better as a writer with each of her three interrelated novels about Argylle, and I am sorry that there aren’t more of them. The Price of Blood and Honor is the third in publication order, although it is the middle book in terms of the internal chronology. It picks up right after …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/23/the-price-of-blood-and-honor-by-elizabeth-willey/

Sep 22 2018

A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell

Y’all, that was bananas. Imagine every noir trope/betrayal/plot twist thrown into a blender and served up with a healthy dose of modern mom issues, and you have this completely insane book that I read essentially overnight when I should have been sleeping. Granted, I was trying to crush the book ahead of going to see …

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Sep 16 2018

Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

About 60% of the way through this book, I thought, “Wtf, this isn’t going to be about what I think it is, is it?” and then it fucking was. And while I was okay with the events that led to the book garnering its own #WTFThatEnding, I was legitimately pissed with how the book has …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/16/behind-her-eyes-by-sarah-pinborough/

Sep 14 2018

From Page To Screen: Crazy Rich Asians

I’m not one of those snobs who always insists that the book was better than the movie adaptation. In my experience as a pop culture connoisseur, particularly in our modern era, book and movie are often on a similar level to one another. Gone Girl, for example, was excellent in both forms, though that likely …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/14/from-page-to-screen-crazy-rich-asians/

Sep 12 2018

London: A Life in Maps by Peter Whitfield

London: A Life in Maps began as a volume accompanying an exhibition at the British Library in 2006. (The exhibit lives on in virtual form at the Library’s web site.) The book was first published that year, and when it kept selling for more than a decade, revised for a new edition published in 2017. …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/12/london-a-life-in-maps-by-peter-whitfield/

Sep 11 2018

There There by Tommy Orange

Tommy Orange is such a superlative writer that he can do things that irritate the hell out of me in other books and somehow make them work. And better than work: he creates magic on the page. It’s not really a spoiler to say that There There ends with multiple storylines left unresolved. In the …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/11/there-there-by-tommy-orange/

Sep 10 2018

Occupy Me by Tricia Sullivan

So let me begin with a quotation from near the end of the novel (pg 345 of the paperback Titan edition): “If I took away the sensory overlay I could directly know the patterns of so many concepts coming to fruition out here on the North Sea: the physics behind pressure gauges and safety seals, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/09/10/occupy-me-by-tricia-sullivan/

Sep 08 2018

Soviet Bus Stops, Volume II by Christopher Herwig

“‘This is bullshit,’ I mumbled, through tears of exhaustion and frustration. The chances of the 4×4 climbing the snowy Goderdzi Pass were as slim as the likelihood that the bus stop at the summit was the prize I so desperately sought. Why was I still doing this after fifteen years, why couldn’t I stop?” (p. …

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