Monday, November 11, 2013

1 Novella, 2 Novels

So, into the Sci-Fi/Fantasy to-read stack. Finally (duh) figured out that I could manually create a "Unread" self in the Kobo eBook reader and put my unread books there. Oops, 14 there. It's way to easy to impulse buy eBooks. The Kobo eBook reader seems to crash less but still, unbelievable that it does not have a "search text" function.

First off, read "Equoid", by Charles Stross. It's a novella set in his The Laundry series of books, I think like $1.99 for the eBook. Stross has so much fun taking the base mix of Dilbert, H.P. Lovecraft, and James Bond and then finding some much beloved fantasy meme to throw in, normally with horrible consequences. In this case it's unicorns -- and I'll never be able to watch My Little Pony again :-(

Then I read the 2nd and 3rd books of The Inheritance Trilogy, by N.K. Jemisin: "The Broken Kingdoms", and "The Kingdom of Gods". The first book, "The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms" was blogged ... or apparently not, hmmm. I enjoyed it enough to try these two.

This woman writes very well, and I really like the way this trilogy is structured. The protagonist changes in each of the novels, with other protagonists and supporting characters threading through all 3 novels. She has created what I think is a nice workable mythology. Chaos spawns 3 gods (she seems to like trinities of 2 males and 1 female, not sure what that means): male gods of light/day and darkness/night, and a female god of grey/twilight. The gods are capable of manipulating reality on pretty much any level they want. The gods' children are demigods, who can live in the physical world or in the god realms. They typically have to have a theme, like a Greek/Roman god -- the protagonist of the 3rd novel is Sieh, trickster demigod of children/childhood. They can manipulate reality like the gods only in limited fashion. Demigods breeding amongst themselves or with the gods produce more demigods. Demigods breading with humans create demons (not sure why she chose that term) who may have various magical powers.

The writing is good, the pacing and plotting decent. All 3 novels have male (demi)gods having sex with human women, with no sex going the other way -- is this a standard feature of the paranormal romance genre, which I guess this falls into to some degree? There is also male homosexual action in the 3rd novel, mercifully with very little detail (I guess that goes with the 2 male god / 1 female god trinity thing).

So overall, well written, nice mythology building, nice structure. 3 stars.

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