Hugo Awards

Earlier in the year I posted about Worldcon and the Hugo Awards. I’ve been reading the books nominated for the award for novels. Ahead of the start of Worldcon in London this weekend I though I’d post my reviews of books up for awards.

The first book I read, New Spring by Robert Jordan, is a prequel to his The Wheel of Time series. There was no specific book mentioned in the nomination so I chose the one I found in the library.

I’ve never read any of this series, but I think I might make the effort now. I really enjoyed New Spring. I thought the characters were fun and well realized, the world building convincing (which isn’t a surprise, considering how long Mr Jordan has been writing about his invention) and the plot appealing.

5/5

Parasite by Mira Grant

I have read other ‘Mira Grant’ novels, the Newsflesh Trilogy, and enjoyed them, so I had fairly high hopes of Parasite. I wasn’t disappointed, but I can’t decide how I feel about this book. As the first part of a new series, it definitely left me wanting to know what happens next. I liked the characters, but felt most were only partially sketched; Sal was the only one fully drawn. I enjoyed the first person present narrative; Mira Grant is very good at this tricky tense.

But, the narrative arc doesn’t feel substantially different from the Newsflesh Trilogy arc. There might not be any zombies, but the message is the same.

4/5

The next book I read was by an author whose name I vaguely recognised, but whose work I’ve never read (I think).

Warbound (Book 3 of the Grimnoir Chronicles)

Larry Correia

It’s sometimes difficult to get in to a book if it’s the latest in the series and I haven’t read the earlier books. I was a little worried that would be the case here. I shouldn’t have been; despite references to past events enough back story was included in the narrative to fill in any gaps.

I really quite enjoyed this novel; it has the tone of a noir crime potboiler crossed with a steampunk airship adventure. The characters were fun, the mechani-magical technology and systems of magic worked out fairly coherently and the overall narrative was fun.

5/5

Ancillary Justice
Ann Leckie

I tried really hard with this one but struggled to make any headway; I’ve been bashing away at it for two weeks. I will persevere though. It may be one of those books that takes a hundred pages to get going.

2/5 – might change on completion.

Neptune’s Brood

Charles Stross

With all the insanity going on in my life at the minute I haven’t managed to finish reading this novel; I’ve read about 50% of it.

I really like this one; it’s completely intriguing. The character of Krina is complex and funny; the situations she gets herself in to are bizarre. It’s a well written novel.

4/5 – maybe changed once I finish reading it.

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