December 2020 archive

Dec 31 2020

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

How would a sword-and-sorcery author who basically wanted to have a hell of a lot of fun write in the twenty-first century? They’d write like Tamsyn Muir does in Gideon the Ninth, I think. “In the myriadic year of our Lord—the ten thousandth year of the King Undying, the kindly Prince of Death!—Gideon Nav packed …

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Dec 30 2020

White Ivy by Susie Yang

I had a very Lucille Bluth moment at the end, reading the final sentence and saying aloud, “Good for her!” even as I wished I had a martini in hand. Whether to celebrate or to sedate with is a good question, tho. The weird thing is that while I was cheering her on, I didn’t …

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Dec 29 2020

The Mythics Vol 2: Teenage Gods by Philippe Ogaki, Patrick Sobral, Fabien Dalmasso, Alice Picard, Jerome Alquie, Frederic Charve & Magali Paillat

This has got to be one of the most beautiful anime-inspired comic book titles for young readers out there today. Despite the creative teams varying between each of the three issues that make up this trade paperback, the quality is uniformly high, and the art style doesn’t deviate so much between issues as to seem …

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Dec 24 2020

From Page To Screen: The Man In The High Castle by Philip K Dick

I finally finished all four seasons of the brilliant Amazon adaptation of the sci-fi classic, and was struck both by the similarities, which were neutral to bad, as well as by the differences, which were mostly wise choices on the part of the series’ creative team, imho. There must, ofc, be plentiful differences in order …

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Dec 23 2020

The Peripheral by William Gibson

The Peripheral by William Gibson

Like the protagonist of Neuromancer, William Gibson is an artiste of the slightly funny deal. In The Peripheral the first slightly funny deal is between some people in England who hire some other folks in a small-town part of Appalachia in the US. The English contingent wants the people across the pond to fly a …

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Dec 22 2020

The Tyrant Baru Cormorant (The Masquerade #3) by Seth Dickinson

Y’all, I thought this was the last book in the series. Like, I’m glad there’ll be more, but I was under the impression that this was the grand finale, so spent the last thirty or so pages being pretty confused till Seth Dickinson’s afterword acknowledging both that there’s one final book coming but also that …

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Dec 16 2020

The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air #1) by Holly Black

I put off reading this for so long because I assumed it was the kind of book a certain subset of YA readers go gaga over despite a lack of any real substance, and BOY, WAS I WRONG! This book was so good, I wound up reading in bed way past my bedtime, telling myself …

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Dec 14 2020

The Haunting Of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

I don’t know whether the authors invited to write companion essays to classic novels have any say in the placement of their pieces in relation to the main text, but God Almighty, is it irritating to read a spoiler-filled introduction by Laura Miller when at least Jonathan Lethem’s smug thoughts on We Have Always Lived …

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Dec 10 2020

Fable (Fable #1) by Adrienne Young

Look at that gorgeous cover! It’s literally the best part of this nonsense book that had me wanting to dig up copies of Arthur Ransome’s Swallows And Amazons series so I could read a tale of young pirates that I would actually enjoy. Okay, Adrienne Young’s prose is pretty decent — there are some lovely …

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Dec 08 2020

Lola’s Super Club: My Dad is a Super Secret Agent (Lola’s Super Club #1) by Christine Beigel & Pierre Foiullet

Plucky, imaginative young Lola is convinced that her father, stay-at-home dad Robert Darkhair, is actually the famed super spy James Blond in disguise. When his life is threatened by super-villain Max Imum, Lola must don her own disguise and, alongside her animal — stuffed or otherwise — sidekicks, form a super club to save her …

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