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review 2015-09-04 00:00
Labyrinthian - Sunny Moraine The Hunter and The Hunted, I just love it.
As with the other Sunny Moraine novel I read (Line and Orbit--and I HIGHLY recommend it), the story is not dominated by the romance. This is a story about Taur (the hunted) and his hope to find his family and his struggle with whether he even wants to fight to survive or not.
Taur was a great character because everything about him seemed to oppose something else in him. He was a killer. Like woah. But innocent in many ways. Decisive and fast reacting, yet...when it came to certain things, he was lost. I loved that about him.
Theseus was great too. I really liked him a lot.
Phae...what to say about Phae? I didn't like her at first, I think maybe I was jealous, but she was a good friend and important to the story and to the relationship between Taur and Theseus.
The story started a little slowly for me, if I know there is a love interest, I want them to meet and even though I enjoy getting to know the characters and seeing their struggles and what brings them together, I was impatient for them to meet.
I think the ending played out how it had to, but I have to be honest, that I think that with most stories when the main part of it is the journey, something about how things get resolved...its like..."oh, that wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be" but maybe that's not fair. I mean, would I want things to have been worse than they were? No, but...something about it bothered me, I think, I can't put my finger on it.
There were some interesting elements thrown in there as well, enhancing the suspense and breaking my heart.
I love this author and I will read more from her.
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review 2014-09-25 00:00
Line and Orbit
Line and Orbit - Sunny Moraine,Lisa Soem 4.5 stars
Absolutely fabulous. I've been in a bit of a weird mood, because I used to swear that I was not into any sci-fi related books...but that is no longer true. This was such a well told and beautiful story. So many things that I loved about it. The characters were wonderful and unforgettable and full of honor and sacrifice and (as Nick has recently reminded me) decency. There were times when I almost felt that I couldn't quite grasp it, like it was just out of reach, I almost had it, but I realized, I was just really living through Adam. I felt it all, Ying's hands pressing into him, his guilt and loneliness, desire and confusion. It was wonderful. Lochlan was a hell of guy, brash and rude, but so loyal, so...sensitvie really. Kae...oh, just loved him, he was so...the guy you wish was your best friend, the guy you hope someone you love ends up with. Spectacular.
I must say that even though this is M/M romance, the romance is rather secondary, very small in actuality, though it is always there, rumbling under the surface, you are aware of the characters and their sensitivity to each other, when Adam is scanning the crowd for Lock, you realize that you were too. They didn't move and react the way I wanted them to...I wanted more, but they couldn't be rushed, it wouldn't have been genuine.
Adam is ill and cast out of his world for his imperfection and there is a lot to be said about the Protectorate and their absolute arrogance in the pursuit of creating a perfect race of people. But even though there is atrocity, even though they are arrogant and well wrong, there is still a bit of honor to them as well. With one exception. I won't go into that.
I think this was just brilliantly written and such a beautiful story. I will read anything from these authors as I was just really touched.
"'Adam' he breathed, leaning in again, lips close to Adam's, hot to cold and trembling. 'Please...come back.' Don't leave me alone like this. Let me see that you know me one more time. Because it matters, what we know."
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review 2014-02-22 10:41
Line and Orbit
Line and Orbit - Sunny Moraine,Lisa Soem

This is my choice for the Zodiac Challenge (Pisces) since it's set in another world.


This story came highly recommended and almost all of my friends love it. 
I can see why, although I didn't love it quite as much. It has very creative world building, an interesting mix of old history and folklore and sci-fi/futuristic and a very powerful message and moral.

Adam lives in the very modern and technology advanced world. The people have been 'enhanced' and bred for perfection and implanted with technology for generations.
The Bideshi separated from 'their brothers' generations ago when they saw how the future was going to “A long time ago, my people—and then they were your people too—saw a way to rid themselves of a disease that was causing a great deal of death and pain. They went into the genetic code of every human and cut the sickness off at the source. At the root. New generations needed to have the same procedure. It was a good thing. It saved lives, as long as the practice was maintained. But then…then they went further.”

But Adam has a defect, making him trash and undesirable for the Protectorate
He is rescued by Lochlan and taken in to a world that Adam has only heard rumors about.

“Adam looked down at the proffered hand. He didn’t take it. The Bideshi. Weavers of dark magic, believers of dark madness. Bandits and thieves.”

The Bideshi seems to be a native nomadic kind of society, they like to travel on their home ships, there are also lots of references to the Old Testament of the bible in their history. Like brother against brother with Cain and Able, which is a good metaphor for this story. They also live with superstition and magic. They have very strong family ties and the whole society is considered family.
This is a whole new world for Adam and it changes him in many ways.
The society he came from was 'perfect' and very repressed. It's represented by Melissa Cosaire. And wow, someone wanted to make sure we knew how crazy perfection can be.
Adam is accepted and welcomed in to their world, as much as he was dismissed and exiled by his own.
But the Protectorate has a secret, one they are willing to kill to keep.

“You’ve heard that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few. But here’s a thing to think on, child: why must there be any difference between the two?”

Decisions need to be made, ones that will cause death and hardship. 
“I caused this.” He ached with exhaustion and a thousand other things. “They want me—”
“They want blood. Be easy, little brother. You’re ours now. We are bigger and we are older and, mitr, we do not fight fair.”

I liked a lot of those things, the strong moral of the story, to always want moremore perfection, more power, havingno acceptance of anything different or 'imperfect' and to what that can lead. But also being brave and standing up for what you believe in, even at great cost. It was a very unique story with lots of creative mixing of different components. 
But, it was very long, too long, and at times written in such a way that was more riddles and I felt like I should know what they meant or were talking about, but I didn't. It took me almost half the book to feel invested and want to carry on reading.
And I would not consider this a romance at all, yes Adam and Lochlan do come together, but it really is more of a footnote. I never really warmed up to them as a couple and it wasn't until the last pages that I was even sure they were one.

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review 2014-01-16 09:29
I Tell Thee All, I Can No More
Clarkesworld Magazine Issue 82 - Neil Clarke;Vajra Chandrasekera;Sunny Moraine;David Tallerman;Ian McDonald;Daryl Gregory

I only read "I Tell Thee All, I Can No More" by Sunny Moraine:


Not what I usually read. Strange and thought-provoking.

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review 2014-01-13 20:39
Line and Orbit
Line and Orbit - Sunny Moraine,Lisa Soem

4.75 stars.

Great characters + fascinating story = happy reader :)

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