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Joined 4 months, 2 weeks ago

Former academic, stay-at-home dad, hobbyist programmer/data nerd. Reads mainly SF/F and historical fiction. Follow me on Mastodon!

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commented on The First Binding by R.R. Virdi

The First Binding (Hardcover, 2022, Tor Books) No rating

Ok I'm about a third of the way through now. Things are finally happening, but I'm still finding the pace a bit slow. There's a lot of "the heart of a child is a hard thing capable of enduring the whatever and so on" and like, it's not as smart or insightful as it thinks it is? get on with the story.

The First Binding (Hardcover, 2022, Tor Books) No rating

Getting quite strong Name of the Wind vibes from this book.

Framing device of the weary famous adventurer living in obscurity, possibly having caused some sort of cataclysm agrees to tell his story.

Flighty mysterious possible love interest.

Started from nothing, abject poverty childhood...

Slow horses (2011, Isis) 4 stars

Slough House is Jackson Lamb's kingdom; a dumping ground for members of the intelligence service …

A fun modern spy thriller

4 stars

I found that the attempt at snappy witty dialogue sometimes fell flat, and I just had this can't-quite-pin-down sensation that the book was somehow trying too hard, but this was overall a pretty good spy thriller.

Content warning Spoilers ahoy

reviewed Departures by E.J. Wenstrom

No cover


3 stars

Maybe I just don't like YA dystopias

3 stars

Departures is a novel about an apparently pleasant world where everything is controlled by the Directorate, a near-omnipotent government. Everyone gets the date of their departure (i.e. death) tattooed on their arm when they're young. This is apparently based on when that individual ceases to live a full and productive life. The novel follows two sisters, one of whose departure date is the day the novel opens. It's not much of a spoiler to say that things don't go to plan.

I didn't realise this was a YA book when I started it. I don't know where I got the recommendation from. So maybe I should cut it some slack for that, but... are all YA books so heavy-handed with their social commentary? Don't teens feel patronised by this level of clumsy signposting? Yes, the Directorate's allegedly benevolent plan is stifling, we get it, you don't need to hammer home …

Hyperion (Hardcover, 1989, Doubleday) 4 stars

On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth …

An uneven mishmash

3 stars

Content warning Includes spoilers

Hyperion (Hardcover, 1989, Doubleday) 4 stars

On the eve of Armageddon, with the entire galaxy at war, seven pilgrims set forth …

Content warning Spoilers for the first half

The Goblin Emperor (Paperback, 2019, REBCA) 4 stars

Maia, the youngest, half-goblin son of the Emperor has lived his entire life in exile, …

A gentle, low-stakes book about palace intrigue

3 stars

Content warning Vague spoilerish chat. No specific plot points discussed.