Jemisin, Leckie, Letters to Tiptree: praise ye them

The 2016 Hugo Awards were announced last night, and I am SO PLEASED that N K Jemisin's The Fifth Season won the category of Best Novel. It is groundbreaking, superb, a work of utterly readable literary invention that I am proud to have reviewed, here. Ann Leckie's Ancillary Mercy was one of the five other shortlisted … Continue reading Jemisin, Leckie, Letters to Tiptree: praise ye them

Kate Wilhelm’s Let the Fire Fall

I really liked the last Kate Wilhelm novel I read (Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang), for her tight plotting, her compelling storytelling, her inventiveness with imagining the future. But I was impatient (perhaps I shouldn’t have been: she’s an author of her times) with the annoying contrasts between the broad dystopic vision cramped into … Continue reading Kate Wilhelm’s Let the Fire Fall

Sex, death and love (in that order) in James Tiptree Jr’s Her Smoke Rose Up Forever

The short stories of Her Smoke Rose Up Forever are grim and powerful reading, committing the reader to new worlds and leaving unsettling characters in the mind. They are about love, sex and death in the future, across species and time. In the original Introduction to the 1990 edition John Clute writes passionately about the … Continue reading Sex, death and love (in that order) in James Tiptree Jr’s Her Smoke Rose Up Forever