Stranger in the Citadel

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Tobias Buckell: Stranger in the Citadel (2023, Tachyon Publications)

English language

Published Nov. 20, 2023 by Tachyon Publications.

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3 stars (3 reviews)

2 editions

A Stranger in the Citadel, by Tobias S. Buckell

2 stars

Once again, I have been suckered in by a premise involving librarians in danger. Sadly, Tobias S. Buckell’s A Stranger in the Citadel fails to live up to the promise of the idea that librarians survive in a world that will burn anyone caught with a book or who demonstrates literacy. On the one hand, it’s full of too much detail to evoke the feel of folklore, where plot holes are readily forgiven as long as the story hits the right beats. On the other, there’s too little detail to give the impression of a fully-formed world for us readers to get immersed in...

Read the rest of my review at A Bookish Type.

The road to hell and so forth…

4 stars

When you set out to make a paradise, first make sure you aren't making a new special variant of hell seems to be the moral of A Stranger In The Citadel. We follow a young princess as she discovers things aren't quite as simple as she imagined and ends up going on an unintended voyage of discovery about her world. Pretty well paced and tantalizes with just enough detail to keep you going to the big reveals near the end.

And any book that starts with the line “Thou shall not suffer a librarian to live.” has already got a pretty interesting hook!

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rated it

4 stars


  • Fiction, alternative history
  • Fiction, fantasy, action & adventure
  • Fiction, fantasy, historical