Tag: Alternate History

Feb 02 2018

California Bones by Greg van Eekhout

This was fun. It wasn’t deep, but it was fun. California Bones is set in an alternative present in which magic of various kinds works, and California is split into two independent polities — inexplicably not nicknamed Lo Cal and No Cal, although it is implied that southern California is colloquially known as the magic …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/02/02/california-bones-by-greg-van-eekhout/

Jan 28 2018

Time Shards (Time Shards #1) by Dana Fredsti and David Fitzgerald

Wrapping up the newest available seasons of Flash and Legends Of Tomorrow on Netflix (LoT has gotten significantly better in this second season despite still having zero regard for science and physics, whereas Flash in the Savitar season is godawful,) I’m a little leery of time-travel shenanigans right now. But like Fox Mulder, I want …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2018/01/28/time-shards-time-shards-1-by-dana-fredsti-and-david-fitzgerald/

Dec 22 2017

Wrapping Up

Time for some short takes, to mostly clear the desk for the coming year. The Inexplicables by Cherie Priest. In the fourth of her five Clockwork Century novels, Priest takes a stab at telling her story mostly from the point of view of an unsympathetic narrator. Rector Sherman is an addict, hooked on the “sap,” …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/12/22/wrapping-up-2/

Nov 26 2017

Ganymede by Cherie Priest

Ganymede, the third of Cherie Priest’s five Clockwork Century novels, follows the efforts of some free people of color to tip the scales of the American Civil War, ongoing for more than 20 years at the time of the book’s events, in favor of the Union by bringing it an experimental Confederate submarine that sank …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/11/26/ganymede-by-cherie-priest/

Sep 27 2017

Pirate Utopia by Bruce Sterling

The collapse of the European empires at the end of World War I produced considerable political strangeness. Béla Kun. The Czech Legion in Siberia. The Bavarian Soviet Republic. Baron Ungern. Flights of fancy, seizures of power, and some powerfully fancy seizures. In Pirate Utopia, Bruce Sterling sails off to another corner of collapsing empires rubbing …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/09/27/pirate-utopia-by-bruce-sterling/

Sep 14 2017

Europe in Winter by Dave Hutchinson

I should say two things right up front about Europe in Winter. First, intermittently during a bicycle tour across one of Europe’s smaller polities that steadfastly refuses to disappear completely is both the right and wrong way to read this book. Wrong, because it surely deserves closer attention that I was sometimes able to give …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/09/14/europe-in-winter-by-dave-hutchinson/

Sep 11 2017

Underground Airlines by Ben H Winters

As a young Asian girl with shallow roots in Virginia and a voracious reading appetite, I was absolutely seduced by Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With The Wind. Once I settled permanently in America, moving north over the course of a decade from Virginia to DC to Maryland, widening my circle of colleagues and friends, and becoming …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/09/11/underground-airlines-by-ben-h-winters-2/

May 02 2017

Deathless (Leningrad Diptych #1) by Catherynne M. Valente

There’s no denying that this is a beautifully written book. Catherynne M Valente takes Russian and Slavic folktales and melds them with Russian, particularly Leningrad, history of the early 20th century. Her descriptions of falling in love and of the secret languages and compromises of marriage make for compelling, wholly believable and empathetic reading. And …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/02/deathless-leningrad-diptych-1-by-catherynne-m-valente/

May 01 2017

Tales of the Squee

The height of my to-be-read pile could be measured in years, if the books could somehow fit into a unified pile. And that doesn’t count a particular moving box in the basement, in which some really good books, or at least some really interesting-looking books are awaiting their turn to come upstairs. (Some of them …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/05/01/tales-of-the-squee/

Apr 24 2017

Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters

Underground Airlines by Ben H. Winters is a hell of a book. The premise is that amendments to the US Constitution in the 1860s preserved the Union and averted the Civil War, but at the cost of continuing to accept slavery in states that chose to keep their peculiar institution. In the 21st century, a …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2017/04/24/underground-airlines-by-ben-h-winters/