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Joined 3 months, 4 weeks ago

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The Calculating Stars: A Lady Astronaut Novel (2018) 3 stars

The Calculating Stars is a science fiction novel by American writer Mary Robinette Kowal. The …

Simultaneously great and frustrating

3 stars

I really like her alternate timeline series; it's fascinating that in this one the women are the ones who get to go to space and that we're rushing to escape a now dying Earth. But on the other hand, she tends to be pretty blunt about beating us over the head time and again with the fight against gender and race prejudices that the characters are going through. Obviously, this is stuff that needs to be brought to light and such, but I did reach my limit usually midway through each of her books and would just want to gloss & skim any part where a character is yet again internally bemoaning the frustrations that she's having with getting everything done that needs to be done when so many people are assuming so much about her incorrectly based on gender/race. It ended up (for me) being almost as irritating as …

The Outside (2019, Angry Robot) 4 stars

Autistic scientist Yasira Shien has developed a radical new energy drive that could change the …

A technical system for explaining Cthulu?

4 stars

The idea that the "gods" (uplifted AIs) are now real and busy protecting us from incursions by "the Outside" is a fascinating playground to set a story in. A lead scientist goes of the rails and invites the Outside in on a planet and the gods send troops down to try and stem the tide of weirdness and unreality. Great stuff.

This Is How You Lose the Time War (Hardcover, 2019, Simon and Schuster) 4 stars

Two time-traveling agents from warring futures, working their way through the past, begin to exchange …

I know a ton of people loved this but…

2 stars

I found it pretty frustrating going. I like the idea that they're hiding secret letters for each other as they fight the "time war" but the war itself was so abstract and ridiculously coated in poetic license that I often was just annoyed at how the authors were trying to push forward on a rush of emotion instead of backing things up with a little stronger consensual reality. Maybe I rushed it? I dunno. Not my up of tea on the end at any rate.

Stealing Worlds (Hardcover, 2019, Tor Books) 5 stars

Opting out of capitalism via LARPing

5 stars

Well-told story presenting some really fascinating ideas about ways that we could possibly leverage technology to create alternate realities and economies and bring the entire planet into those such that traditional governments have much less control and the resources of the planet are able to express their needs in the public forum. Highly recommended reading!