Doug Merrill

Writer, editor, translator, project manager, reformed bookseller. Currently based in Berlin, following stints in Moscow, Tbilisi, Munich, Washington, Warsaw, Budapest and Atlanta. Also blogs at A Fistful of Euros, though less frequently than here these days.

Most commented posts

  1. The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison — 7 comments
  2. The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin — 6 comments
  3. Tooth and Claw by Jo Walton — 5 comments
  4. Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire — 5 comments
  5. Mort by Terry Pratchett — 5 comments

Author's posts

Dec 15 2014

The House of Hades by Rick Riordan

One of the nice things about not being in a book’s target audience is being able to stand back a bit more and see what the author is up to, what’s happening structurally within a book or series, to generally chew on it a bit more. The House of Hades reaches its main intended audience …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/15/the-house-of-hades-by-rick-riordan/

Dec 08 2014

Finding Poland by Matthew Kelly

Did you know there was an Association of Poles in India? Did you even have the faintest idea that there had been Poles by the thousand in India during the Second World War and in the first few years afterward? I certainly didn’t, and I know a thing or two about Poles and Poland. Which …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/08/finding-poland-by-matthew-kelly/

Dec 03 2014

The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss

What to say that Laura hasn’t already? This story is a week in the life of a minor character, minor in Rothfuss’ other works, that is, and I think that it’s a good example of a writer doing something interesting because he doesn’t feel constrained to follow that larger story. It isn’t trying to be …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/03/the-slow-regard-of-silent-things-by-patrick-rothfuss-2/

Dec 02 2014

The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

Fun, funny at times, and even occasionally touching. Hits its mark perfectly for its intended audience, and isn’t bad at all for those of us a couple of decades past that. The Mark of Athena is much the same, and brings the overall story closer to completion. I am taking a break before going much …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/02/the-son-of-neptune-by-rick-riordan/

Nov 26 2014

Premature Evaluation: Finding Poland by Matthew Kelly

The first chapters of this book are giving me a case of the Yabbuts. Finding Poland is mostly a family chronicle, concerning Matthew Kelly’s great-grandmother and her two daughters, and how they went from pre-WWII eastern Poland to later life in the United Kingdom. By way of Kazakhstan, Iran and India. To get to why …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/26/premature-evaluation-finding-poland-by-matthew-kelly/

Nov 17 2014

Ancillary Sword by Ann Leckie

Ancillary Sword puts author Ann Leckie in a strong position to be the first author since 1991-92 to repeat as winner of the Hugo for best novel, and indeed to be only the second person ever to repeat Hugo/Nebula awards in that category. Which is mainly to say that Ancillary Sword is a terrific book, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/17/ancillary-sword-by-ann-leckie/

Nov 11 2014

The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman

“If you grew up reading Harry Potter, read Lev Grossman’s Magicians trilogy.” That’s certainly how I would sell people on the books. They’re more adult than Potter, but they have structural similarities: Magic works in our world, but it is a secret known only to a few. There are schools that teach the adept how …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/11/the-magicians-land-by-lev-grossman/

Nov 11 2014

Warsaw 1920 by Adam Zamoyski

The argument of Warsaw 1920: Lenin’s Failed Conquest of Europe is that “in the summer of 1920, outside the gates of Warsaw, there took place a battle that ranks alongside Marathon and Waterloo for its importance in history.” Zamoyski’s brisk, 148-page narrative sets out to make that argument, describe the campaign that reached its climax …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/11/warsaw-1920-by-adam-zamoyski/

Nov 10 2014

Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler

As Stalin’s purges neared their apogee, show trials in Moscow featured heroes of the Russian Revolution confessing to the most astonishing things: that they had conspired with foreign powers, that they had plotted to kill Stalin; that they had knowingly and willfully wrecked whole sectors of the economy; and more. How could these men — …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/10/darkness-at-noon-by-arthur-koestler/

Nov 07 2014

Without a Summer by Mary Robinette Kowal

Without a Summer by Mary Robinette Kowal is the third of her Glamourist Histories series, following Shades of Milk & Honey, and Glamour in Glass. The series crosses Regency romances with alternate (but not terribly alternate) history and a dash of domestic magic that may yet admit of industrial applications.

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/11/07/without-a-summer-by-mary-robinette-kowal/