Category Archive: Fantasy

Jun 21 2017

This Census-Taker by China Miéville

This Census-Taker, by China Miéville, did not add up for me. If it were not a Hugo finalist, if I had not read and liked close to half a dozen of his other works, I would have pronounced the Eight Deadly Words and set the book aside. Miéville is aiming for the mythic, but mythic …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/06/21/this-census-taker-by-china-mieville/

Jun 15 2017

The Fifth Elephant by Terry Pratchett

The dwarfs of Uberwald will soon be crowning a new Low King, and Ankh-Morpork needs to send an ambassador. In times past, the powers-that-be in the great city of Ankh-Morpork might not have noticed such a change in under-Uberwald, and if they had noticed they would not have felt any need to be involved. But …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/06/15/the-fifth-elephant-by-terry-pratchett/

Jun 04 2017

Penric and the Shaman by Lois McMaster Bujold

Reading as a Hugo voter is a funny thing. I’ve been aware of the Hugo awards for more than 30 years now, some of the winners have been among the best things that I’ve read, and I’m thrilled to be a part of the process for the first time this year. I’m getting to play …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/06/04/penric-and-the-shaman-by-lois-mcmaster-bujold/

Jun 04 2017

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal by G. Willow Wilson & Adrian Alphona

OMG, this book made me SO HAPPY. I’ll freely admit that I avoided reading it because I didn’t enjoy G Willow Wilson’s Alif The Unseen, and I wasn’t interested in being disappointed once more by well-meaning reviews who give questionable issues a pass because diversity. But Ms Marvel Vol I was so terrific that I …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/06/04/ms-marvel-vol-1-no-normal-by-g-willow-wilson-adrian-alphona/

May 28 2017

Amberlough by Lara Elena Donnelly

As far as fantasy novels go, this has a great setting and characters (with one exception that I’ll get to in a minute) and above all atmosphere. Essentially an alternate world take on Weimar Berlin before the fascists’ rise to power, it depicts life lived on a razor’s age, hedonism in the maw of societal …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/28/amberlough-by-lara-elena-donnelly/

May 26 2017

Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett

Somewhere I had read that Maskerade was the last Discworld book featuring the Lancre witches. Worse, I believed it, so I was both a little surprised and a lot pleased to pick up Carpe Jugulum and find that they were back. Pratchett dispensed with the traditional opening — “When shall we three meet again?” — …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/26/carpe-jugulum-by-terry-pratchett/

May 20 2017

“The Tomato Thief” by Ursula Vernon

“The Tomato Thief” by Urusla Vernon will have my first-place vote for this year’s Hugo award in the category of best novelette. It is a sideways return to the world of “Jackalope Wives,” which won the Nebula in 2014 for best short story, and is the only other story of hers that I have read. …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/20/the-tomato-thief-by-ursula-vernon/

May 10 2017

The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin

The Fifth Season is a very bleak book. It is riveting, engrossing, engaging, compelling, thought-provoking, and more, but it is also very, very bleak. When I was finished, I picked up a slim Soviet-German comedy (not an oxymoron!) by way of lightening the mood. The Fifth Season begins with a mother still tending the body …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/10/the-fifth-season-by-n-k-jemisin/

May 08 2017

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders

One of the things I particularly liked about All the Birds in the Sky is how Charlie Jane Anders chose to break up the story. It’s a two-sided, save-the-world story, and all of the basics are there: interesting leads, good counterparts, quick pacing, fun dialog, and so forth. She’s strong enough on the essentials even …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/08/all-the-birds-in-the-sky-by-charlie-jane-anders/

May 07 2017

“The City Born Great” by N.K. Jemisin

“The City Born Great” by N.K. Jemisin should win this year’s Hugo for short story. The conceit of the story is that great human cities have a life of their own. Maybe that life awakens quickly, maybe it takes centuries or millennia, but at some point the genius loci becomes a thing in itself. Birth …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/07/the-city-born-great-by-n-k-jemisin/

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