Reviews and Comments

Abstract Reader

Joined 2 years, 6 months ago

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reviewed Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie (Imperial Radch, #1)

Ann Leckie: Ancillary Justice (Paperback, 2013, Orbit Books) 5 stars

On a remote, icy planet, the soldier known as Breq is drawing closer to completing …


5 stars

Content warning extremely mild spoilers

Charles Stross: Accelerando (2005, Ace Books) 5 stars

The Singularity. It is the era of the posthuman. Artificial intelligences have surpassed the limits …

Excellent post-singularity SciFi

5 stars

Fascinating work of speculative SciFi. Also a lot of fun because it fundamentally embodies many of the outmoded ideas/ideologies of early-2000s open source enthusiasts. Absolutely worth reading.

reviewed Shadow & Claw by Gene Wolfe (The Book of the New Sun)

Gene Wolfe: Shadow & Claw (Paperback, 1994, Orb Books) 4 stars

Shadow and Claw is an omnibus of the first two books of Gene Wolfe's Book …

Fascinating worldbuilding

4 stars

This book features a somewhat mysterious story in an intriguing combination of fantasy and post-singularity science fiction. Many concepts are only ever half explained, adding to the intrigue. The prose is quite beautiful, too!

Emma Mieko Candon: Archive Undying (2023, Doherty Associates, LLC, Tom) 3 stars

War machines and AI gods run amok in The Archive Undying, national bestseller Emma Mieko …

A bit confusing

3 stars

The world building is splendid but I found many of the motivations/sentiments of the characters to be described in a very confusing way. It is not unlikely that this is more of a me problem and not on the author at all.

Iain M. Banks: Consider Phlebas (EBook, 2009, Orbit) 3 stars

The war raged across the galaxy. Billions had died, billions more were doomed. Moons, planets, …

A bit too action-packed for me

4 stars

The characters and worldbuilding, especially, in this book are excellent. However, basically every chapter is some sort of high-stakes battle or chase sequence. For me personally, that eventually got a bit taxing. If you're more into that kind of stuff, I'd heartily recommend it tho.

Thomas Tessier: Finishing Touches (Paperback, 2005, Leisure Books) 4 stars

Promising beginning; disappointing ending

4 stars

The beginning instantly hooked me in. Based on it and the back cover text, I expected a(n even) more gruesome variant of "Der Steppenwolf". However, the secrets in the basement turned out a bit too tame for my taste. There is an incredibly gripping sequence at around 2/3s of the book, but that, too, went too smoothly in the end. The ending is just a bit weird/edgy/cringe. Maybe I'm just not made for horror?

Seth Dickinson: The Traitor Baru Cormorant (2016, Tor Books) 5 stars

Tomorrow, on the beach, Baru Cormorant will look up from the sand of her home …

The ending makes it worth it

4 stars

The first ~50% of this book are rather trite: A typical oppressive empire and a clever, ambitious colonial subject that wants to change it. The second half, the organization of a revolution in a feudal state and the political maneuvering involved, is a lot more fun, but would've only been a 3/5. The ending, however, changes how you view much of the preceding story and expressions and elevates the whole book. No 5/5 because the reading experience of much of this book is still only mediocre.