Tag: Books: Science Fiction

Review: Hollow World

Posted 14 November, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 6 Comments

Hollow World
By: Michael J. Sullivan
Format/Source: eBook; received from supporting his Kickstarter project for The Death of Dulgath

The future is coming…for some, sooner than others.

Ellis Rogers is an ordinary man who is about to embark on an extraordinary journey. All his life he has played it safe and done the right thing, but when faced with a terminal illness, he’s willing to take an insane gamble. He’s built a time machine in his garage, and if it works, he’ll face a world that challenges his understanding of what it means to be human, what it takes to love, and the cost of paradise. He could find more than a cure for his illness; he might find what everyone has been searching for since time began…but only if he can survive Hollow World.

Next sci-fi book review here on the blog as part of Sci-Fi Month is Michael J. Sullivan’s Hollow Word. I have read his Riyria Revelations series a few years ago (see author tag) and greatly enjoyed it but I knew coming to this book this was going to be quite different because it was a different genre and everything. Nonetheless I was interested in reading it for myself.

Read More

Review: The Causal Angel

Posted 11 November, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 4 Comments

The Causal Angel (Jean le Flambeur #3)
By: Hannu Rajaniemi
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

With his infectious love of storytelling in all its forms, his rich characterisation and his unrivalled grasp of thrillingly bizarre cutting-edge science Hannu Rajaniemi has swiftly set a new benchmark for SF in the 21st century. And now with his third novel he completes the tale of his gentleman rogue, the many lives and minds of Jean de Flambeur.

Influenced as much by the fin de siecle novels of Maurice leBlanc as he is by the greats of SF Rajaniemi weaves, intricate, warm capers through dazzling science, extraordinary visions of wild future and deep conjecture on the nature of reality and story.

And now we find out what will happen to Jean, his employer Mieli, the independently minded ship Perhonen and the rest of a fractured and diverse humanity flung through the solar system.

And here we are, at the last book in the Jena le Flambeur trilogy. I’ve greatly enjoyed the first two books in the series (see author tag) even though I admit at times some of the hard science with the mathematical/statistical theories went over my head. Ideally I should’ve revisited the first two books before reading the final volume, but I think I remembered enough to just jump in head-on to the story. May contain some spoilers to the trilogy!

Read More

Review: Ancillary Mercy

Posted 7 November, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 6 Comments

Ancillary Mercy (Imperial Radch #3)
By: Ann Leckie
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

For a moment, things seem to be under control for the soldier known as Breq. Then a search of Atheok Station’s slums turns up someone who shouldn’t exist – someone who might be an ancillary from a ship that’s been hiding beyond the empire’s reach for three thousand years. Meanwhile, a messenger from the alien and mysterious Presger empire arrives, as does Breq’s enemy, the divided and quite possibly insane Anaander Mianaai – ruler of an empire at war with itself.

Anaander is heavily armed and extremely unhappy with Breq. She could take her ship and crew and flee, but that would leave everyone at Athoek in terrible danger. Breq has a desperate plan. The odds aren’t good, but that’s never stopped her before.

Haha, it seems like my thing every year since 2014 to read one of the books from the Imperial Radch trilogy as part of Sci-Fi Month. Well, here we are, at the last book of the trilogy. Just a brief recap I really enjoyed the first novel (review) and thought the second one was all right (review) but got bogged down with some of the smaller-level politics happening on the station when really I wanted to know more about Breq’s struggle with Anaander Mianaai. With the trilogy wrapping up in this final volume, I’m hoping it’ll shift back focus to the larger conflict.

Read More

Review: A Robot in the Garden

Posted 4 November, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 10 Comments

A Robot in the Garden
By: Deborah Install
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

What would you do if you found a rickety robot sitting under a tree in your back garden?

For floundering 34-year-old Ben Chambers the answer is obvious: find out where it came from and take it there to be fixed, even if it means risking his marriage in the process. Determined to achieve something for once in his life, Ben embarks on a journey that takes him and the endearing robot, Tang, to the far side of the globe…and back again. Together they will discover that friendship can rise up under the strangest circumstances, and that Artificial Intelligence can teach a man what it is to be human.

Funny, touching, charming, wise and a bit magical, A Robot in the Garden is a gem of a first novel, perfect for anyone who has ever found it difficult to connect with the world.

I think it was through GoodReads that I first heard of this book. The premise sounded whimsical, but I sort of went back and forth for a while whether or not to pick it up. In the end I picked it up as I was looking for something light to read 🙂

Read More

Review: Fragile Things

Posted 25 October, 2016 by Lianne in Books / 2 Comments

Fragile Things
By: Neil Gaiman
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

A mysterious circus terrifies an audience for one extraordinary performance before disappearing into the night. . . .

In a Hugo Award–winning story, a great detective must solve a most unsettling royal murder in a strangely altered Victorian England. . . .

Two teenage boys crash a party and meet the girls of their dreams—and nightmares. . . .

These marvelous creations and more showcase the unparalleled invention and storytelling brilliance—as well as the terrifyingly dark and entertaining sense of humor—of the incomparable Neil Gaiman. By turns delightful, disturbing, and diverting, Fragile Things is a gift of literary enchantment from one of the most original writers of our time.

At long last I’ve picked up one of Neil Gaiman’s short stories collection; I had been eyeing them for some time, especially as I’ve been reading a lot of short story collections in the past year. I’ve enjoyed Neil Gaiman’s full-length works, whether they be novels or graphic novels, so I was also curious to see how he fared with shorter works.

Read More