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Search tags: Kameron-Hurley
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text 2017-04-30 15:24
Good things come to those who wait...
The Malice - Peter C. Newman
The Vagrant - Peter C. Newman
The Stars Are Legion - Kameron Hurley

Sweet! Kobo has a sale that actually includes a book I want!

 

Their Explore titles that are out of this world sale has several interesting books on for $3.99 and under (Canadian, not sure where else the sale is applicable if anywhere), including The Malice by Peter Newman, which I had been dithering about buying because it's normally $13.99. Now it's $2.99! So I won't be getting it from the library after all.

  

The first book in the series, The Vagrant, is on sale too ($1.99), but I already have that. The Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley is on sale for $3.99 in case someone has been looking for an excuse to pick that up (it's pretty awesome).

 

The sale is on until May 8th. Currently looking through the lists for more pleasant surprises...

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review 2017-04-01 04:13
Review: Stars Are Legion
The Stars Are Legion - Kameron Hurley

I've seen this compared to Matter by Iain M. Banks, and while I understand the, uh, world building comparison (and the similarity in color schemes for the covers), that's just not the Culture novel it reminds me most of. This book is far closer to Surface Detail in plot (but without all the rape), or Excession in terms of pregnancy, relationships, and plots to control a new variable, or Look to Windward in so many functional ways I can't even get into without spoilers.

 

Of course, none of these comparisons really makes a lick of sense.

 

This is C. L. Moore rewriting Jack of Shadows as a Jirel of Joiry story far more than it is any Culture novel. Shit, the big decision at the end is straight out of a Moore story.

 

Whatever. I'm just going to stop trying to fit this into other things.

 

This big, beautiful, bold book. I read it as slowly as I could. I put it down every time I was sick (which has been a lot this year, y'all) so I wouldn't miss a thing. I heard it was gross, but I don't think it really was. All the gross stuff made too much sense to be off putting. So much sense. 

 

And I want to play the rpg version of part II.

 

Read as adventure fiction or political allegory, this holds together and satisfies. I loved it. The characters, the setting, the wtf and the wonder. If this isn't the best books I read this year, it will be a very strange year indeed.

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review 2017-03-11 20:41
The Stars are Legion by Kameron Hurley
The Stars Are Legion - Kameron Hurley

I needed this book. It is pure escapist fun. Brutal, but fun.

 

Hurley throws you right in the deep end with Zan, a warrior who has lost her memory. She explains the minimum amount required for the narrative to make sense, so you’re basically forced to just to accept things until they get explained in bits and pieces, generally much later on. I’m ok with that, and I find it to be a much better world-building experience than info-dump after info-dump. Also, everything that I thought needed an explanation got explained. I’ll admit that some of the background information is only implied and I had to fill it in myself, and I think that’s what drove some people crazy who didn’t like the book. Because the whole idea that the worldships have been orbiting in Legion for so many generations that they are just literally starting to fall apart was pretty clear, I thought, although I suppose it’s never actually spelled out.

 

You should just ignore the summary because it’s hard to summarize this book without giving away spoilers, and the summary won’t prepare you for the book. We have massive organic worldships run by various clans at war with each other. The Katazyrna, the Bhavaja, and the Mokshi are the big players in the novel. They’re at war for resources, basically, and Zan and Jayd (mentioned in the summary) are trying to break away from the past destructive cycles. Of course, this naturally entails a lot of death and destruction.

 

All the characters are female, but this makes sense in the context of this universe. If this is too unbelievable for you, this probably isn’t the book for you.

There is literally no biological function for men to perform in this world, Legion, so just consider them all post-humans rather than your traditional humans. It would have made no sense to shoe-horn males into this world, so get over it if that’s your beef. Actually, it’s never confirmed that they are our descendants, so they could all be aliens instead. It doesn’t matter to the story. They’re trying to escape Legion and its decay but they’ve lost too much knowledge to do it easily.

(spoiler show)

 

I’d call this space opera, but you can tack on the fantasy label if the advanced technology seems too much like magic. Be forewarned that there’s a lot of violence and moral grey zones, but I thought it was great.

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text 2017-02-18 21:11
2017 book pre-orders
Amberlough - Lara Elena Donnelly
The Stars Are Legion - Kameron Hurley
The Beauty - Aliya Whiteley

These are the physical books I've pre-ordered. Most from the almost-local book shop, unless otherwise noted. Like the e-book post, the ribbon only contains the books BL had covers for.

 

January:

Lesbians in Space - Kameron Hurley: Will be the next thing I read. B&N was selling signed copies from their online store, so that's what I have.

 

February:

Amberlough - Lara Elena Donnelly: Spies, smugglers, and fascism. I've heard many good things, but my copy is in another city waiting for me to pick it up.

 

The Classic & Craft Cocktail - Clair McLafferty: We wrangled Clair and another bartender into doing a multi-course cocktail tasting when she was still tending bar. Another time we took a stirred cocktail class from Clair. She is great, and I'm buying multiple signed copies from her to gift to friends.

 

March:

Gwenpool, The Unbelievable Vol. 2: Head of M.O.D.O.K. TPB - Christopher Hastings,Irene Strychalski:  Technically haven't pre-ordered yet, but will acquire from the local comic shop. Did anyone see the video of the car driving through a comic shop that made the rounds recently? That's my local shop.

 

April
Tender: Stories - Sofia Samatar: A short story collection from one of the best writers.
 
June
 
July
Dichronauts - Greg Egan: I have no idea what this is about, but Egan. Always Egan.
 
September
An Unkindness of Magicians - Kat Howard: This author + this imprint + this title would be hard not to pick up.
 

October

The Broken Heavens - Kameron Hurley: Last book in the amazing Worldbreaker trilogy.
The Breathless - Tara Goedjen: YA thriller with romance that starts with a mysterious death, what could go wrong.  
 
November
The Beauty - Aliya Whiteley: Billed as "a dark slice of the New Weird, encompassing dystopian post-apocalyptic fiction, dark fairy tale and horror"
 
December
Persepolis Rising - James SA Corey: 7th book in The Expanse. Book 6 was great, looking forward to more.
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review 2017-02-16 15:33
Review: Geek Feminist Revolution
The Geek Feminist Revolution - Kameron Hurley

There are a million great reviews of this book already, you don't need mine. Instead I'm going to nitpick one essay, then give you links to better review, and links to some of the essays as samples if you aren't already sold. 

 

But seriously, buy this book. Read this book. There will be a quiz. Every day of your goddamn life is a quiz this book has answers to.

 

Part 1, in which I am tedious and pedantic.

 

Hurley loves narrative. It's her day job, her dream job, her whole life. Her essay trying to sell me on narrative, though, I have to give a little side eye to. Her "isn't narrative great!" example is how she successfully sold people something they didn't need. And her rabid enthusiasm for the subject comes across like that of people I know who are super into firearms. Yeah, it's great, but in the hands of the ignorant or the malicious, it's also a fucking terrible weapon we are all vulnerable to. If you need evidence of that, just look at who we just fucking elected. In my firearms metaphor, narrative with no basis in fact is a gun with the safety off. So here, even in complaining, I'm not disagreeing with her. You're right, Hurley, it's great. It's fucking amazing. Please be careful where you aim it and always act like its loaded, even when you "know" it isn't.

 

Part 2, better posts you should read.

 

Ana at The Book Smugglers (review)

Silvana at GR (review)

Aiden Moher at B&N (review/interview)

 

Part 3, a few of the included essays.

 

Gender, Family, Nookie: The Speculative Frontier

On Public Speaking While Fat

Female Rage Doesn’t Exist In A Vacuum

 

Part 4, there's always an epilogue.

 

I lied. I'm not ready for an epilogue. I'm too busy kicking the world square in the nuts. 

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