May. 25th, 2018

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It's been too long. Haven't read that much in the past six months, sometimes for good reasons, sometimes for bad. But here's some of the things I did read:
  • The Medusa Chronicles (Stephen Baxter and Alastair Reynolds): fairly typical Baxter or Reynolds hard sci-fi. Enjoyable enough, but with a GREAT BIG SIGNPOST to the ending a third of the way through the book which left a bit of slogging through waiting to get to that bit.
  • Can & Can’tankerous (Harlan Ellison): I don't remember very much about this. Sorry.
  • Neverwhere (Neil Gaiman): pretty dark, pretty twisted, generally quite weird. Or in other words, just what you'd expect from Gaiman. Enjoyable.
  • Binary Storm (Christopher Hinz): entertaining action romp through a dysfunctional near-future Earth. Written as a prequel, and either the ending is very forced, or was hamstrung by the need to remain consistent with the later books. I suspect the latter.
  • Nemesis (Alex Lamb): starts off as a fairly standard "conspiracy in space" - but has enough twists along the way to keep the interest levels up. Probably worth reading Roboteer (the first in the trilogy) before this though as while there's just about enough exposition so that things make sense, I felt I was missing a few bits along the way.
  • The Three-Body Problem (Liu Cixin, translated by Ken Liu): Hard sci-fi, but with an Eastern spin this time. Hard going in places and jumped a bit quickly from the "investigative phase" to the "everything happens at once phase" for my liking, but I wouldn't be averse to reading the rest of the trilogy at some point.
  • The Book of Heroes (Miyabe Miyuki. Apologies if I've got that name in the wrong order): young girl enters a story to save the world. A bit too young adult for me really, but probably enjoyable if you like that sort of thing.
  • My Night in Freeport (Anthony Pryor): Freeport is one of my favourite D&D settings, so a new story set in the City of Adventure? Grabbed me straight away - but it's really, really, really short. Not worth the asking price.
  • First Person Peculiar (Mike Resnick): a short story collection. Had some good bits and not so good bits in it. Probably.
  • Poseidon's Wake (Alastair Reynolds): yes, more Reynolds so more hard sci-fi. Didn't realise it was the third one in the trilogy when I got it from the library and definitely suffered from that.
  • Miniatures (John Scalzi): another short story collection that I don't remember very much about. There's a theme here, isn't there?
  • The Nightmare Stacks (Charles Stross): back in the Laundryverse. More programmer/maths geek dark horror fun. Good, but not up to the level of The Atrocity Archives from my point of view.
  • Mechanique: A Tale of the Circus Tresaulti (Genevieve Valentine): take a traditional circus. Add some fairly dark Iain M. Banks-style body horror and you have Mechanique. Not going to be a book that makes you smile, but still worth a read.
  • Echoes of Earth (Sean Williams and Shane Dix): an off-shoot colony of humanity receives an apparently great boon from another species... but it comes with a price. A lot of set up for what was obviously always intended to be a multi-part story, and doesn't really get going itself.
  • Blackcollar (Timothy Zahn): a bunch of freedom fighters strike out against the evil Galactic Empire using non-conventional weaponry. Sound familiar? Actually written before Zahn wrote what is apparently some of the best stuff in the Star Wars EU (sorry, "Legends"), but all the same... military fiction is never really my thing, but this is okay as it goes.


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