REVIEW: MANDELBROT THE MAGNIFICENT, BY LIZ ZIEMSKA (2017)

I've read plenty of alternate histories, but I think this is the first alternate biography I've ever come across. Benoit Mandelbrot was a real person--a brilliant mathematician who, as the NYT review for his posthumous memoir put it, "coined the term 'fractal' to refer to a new class of mathematical shapes that uncannily mimic the … Continue reading REVIEW: MANDELBROT THE MAGNIFICENT, BY LIZ ZIEMSKA (2017)

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REVIEW: A SKINFUL OF SHADOWS, BY FRANCES HARDINGE (2017)

Makepeace's nightmares are not like other people's. She dreams of spectral figures trying to claw their way through the window, inside her bedroom, inside her head. For Makepeace (who is twelve) has a strange gift: she has "extra space" inside her that can be inhabited by extra souls, and the souls of the dead--who want … Continue reading REVIEW: A SKINFUL OF SHADOWS, BY FRANCES HARDINGE (2017)

REVIEW: NAONDEL, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY A.A. PRIME (2017)

TW: rape. From the very first page, we know how┬áNaondel ends: seven women escape a life of imprisonment and oppression by sailing away on the eponymous boat; they live the rest of their lives on a magical island; on the island they create a feminist utopia where women and girls from across the world find … Continue reading REVIEW: NAONDEL, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY A.A. PRIME (2017)

DOUBLE REVIEW: THE BLACK TIDES OF HEAVEN AND THE READ THREADS OF FORTUNE, BY JY YANG (2017)

Mokoya and Akeha are twins, children of the Full Lands' ruthless ruler, Lady Sanao Hekate. Mokoya is the incandescent core burning beneath the earth, Akeha the lightning splitting open the sky. Mokoya can see the future, Akeha can stop the heart of flying leviathans. Mokoya becomes her mother's official Prophet, an unwilling instrument of dictatorial … Continue reading DOUBLE REVIEW: THE BLACK TIDES OF HEAVEN AND THE READ THREADS OF FORTUNE, BY JY YANG (2017)

REVIEW: MARESI, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY ANNIE PRIME (2016)

From the start, we know not everything will be alright. Maresi, the novel's eponymous young narrator, tells us that she does not want to bring it all up again--the smell of blood, the sound of crunching bone--and that it is difficult to talk about death. Nevertheless, she must write, so that the events she witnessed, … Continue reading REVIEW: MARESI, BY MARIA TURTSCHANINOFF, TRANSLATED BY ANNIE PRIME (2016)

#WITMONTH REVIEW: AMATKA, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY HERSELF (2017)

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITMonth), so I'm only reviewing books by women in translation. Vanja emptied a box of pencils, lined them up on the shelf, amd pointed at them one by one. 'Pencil, pencil, pencil.' It wasn't long before the words flowed together. 'Pencil-pencil-pencil-pen-cilpen-cilpen- cilpen-cilpen-cilpen--' The last pencil in the row shuddered. … Continue reading #WITMONTH REVIEW: AMATKA, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY HERSELF (2017)

#WITMONTH REVIEW: JAGANNATH, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY KARIN TIDBECK (2012)

August is Women in Translation Month (#WITMonth), so I'm only reviewing books by women in translation. In Jagannath's title story, Karin Tidbeck imagines a postapocalyptic future where humans have forged a symbiotic alliance with gigantic caterpillars. The caterpillars constantly roam the earth in search of sustenance, and the humans live inside them: men--who have become … Continue reading #WITMONTH REVIEW: JAGANNATH, BY KARIN TIDBECK, TRANSLATED BY KARIN TIDBECK (2012)