Saturday, June 30, 2018

Book Review: The Wandering Earth by Liu Cixin

The Wandering Earth is a collection of short stories by Liu Cixin and translated by Ken Liu, Elizabeth Hanlon, Zac Haluza, Adam Lanphier, and Holger Nahm. I picked this up at Balticon, a local science fiction and fantasy convention. I had already read the titular short story (you can find my review here), but had not yet read any of the other ones. Because this is not a novel, I won't review it in the same fashion but rather give you my impressions as a whole.

Read on after the jump for my impressions.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Book Review: Ringworld by Larry Niven

I recently picked up Ringworld by Larry Niven on a whim and since I saw his name mentioned on the Balticon 52 guest list. I've heard of his work before and seeing it on a bookstore decided to give it a go. It stands on it's own, but I've seen that it's also part of a series as well, so I may consider looking at some of the others.
Pierson's puppeteers, three-leg two-head aliens find immense structure in unexplored part of the universe. Frightened of meeting the builders, they send a team of two humans, a puppeteer and a kzin, eight-foot red-fur catlike alien. Ringworld is 180 million miles across, sun at center. But the expedition crashes, and crew face disastrously long trek.
Read on for my spoiler-free review.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Book Review: The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin

The Left Hand of Darkness has been on my to-read list for a very long time. It's recognized as one of Ursula K. Le Guin's best novels and a hallmark of science fiction literature having won countless awards. With her passing a few months ago, I realized it was past time I get to this book and finally found the time to read it. Here's the official blurb:
On the planet Winter, there is no gender. The Gethenians can become male or female during each mating cycle, and this is something that humans find incomprehensible. 
The Ekumen of Known Worlds has sent an ethnologist to study the Gethenians on their forbidding, ice-bound world. At first he finds his subjects difficult and off-putting, with their elaborate social systems and alien minds. But in the course of a long journey across the ice, he reaches an understanding with one of the Gethenians — it might even be a kind of love
See below for my spoiler-free review.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Book Review: Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

I've had Binti by Nnedi Okorafor on my to-read list for about a year or so after hearing about how well received it was- it was the winner of both the Hugo and Nebula awards in 2016 for Best Novella. I recently watched Black Panther the other weekend and saw first hand how cool Afrofuturism can be and was later reminded on twitter about how Binti is an excellent afrofuturist read. This brought it back to the forefront of my list and I finally gave it a shot. And I'm glad I did.

After the jump, you can find my spoiler-free review. Since this is a novella, I'll not use my typical breakdown and just go over the main things that stuck out for me.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Book Review: The Tyrant's Law by Daniel Abraham

The Tyrant's Law is the third book in the The Dagger and the Coin series by Daniel Abraham. It follows directly after The King's Blood. It's been a really long time since I read the prior books- nearly 6 years! Despite this, I still remembered several of the main characters- a testament of Abraham's work. I was eager to continue the series, in spite of not remembering all the details.

Read on for my review.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Book Review: Provenance by Ann Leckie

I bought this book without knowing much about it while visiting the New York Comic Con. I remember hearing about some issues people had with the pronouns in the book (eg, thinking e and em were typos), and I was curious to see how I would react to it. While set in the same universe of her prior books, this novel is far more focused and personal. Furthermore, it can be read on its own without any problem. Here's the official blurb:

A power-driven young woman has just one chance to secure the status she craves and regain priceless lost artifacts prized by her people. She must free their thief from a prison planet from which no one has ever returned. 

Ingray and her charge will return to her home world to find their planet in political turmoil, at the heart of an escalating interstellar conflict. Together, they must make a new plan to salvage Ingray’s future, her family, and her world, before they are lost to her for good. 

Read on for my spoiler-free review.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Favorite Books of 2017

A new year, a new set of books to read. This past year, I read 12 books, consistent with the prior year, though I managed longer books. In total, Goodreads claims I read 7400 pages. As usual, I like to point out what the best books I read in 2017 are. Note however, that these are books I *read* in 2017, not necessarily that were *published* in 2017. So, without further ado, here are my top 3 books this year.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Book Review: Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson

The highly anticipated continuation of The Stormlight Archive is here with Oathbringer. As a fan of Sanderson and his Stormlight series, I've been re-reading the prior books and came to this one with anticipation and high hopes.

As the third in a series, I consider the prior books to be fair-game, but avoid spoilers for the current one.