What I Just Finished ReadingDoc Sidhe
by Aaron Allston. If you're looking at the title and thinking of Doc Savage
, you are on the right track entirely! Doc Sidhe
is a fantasy novel (duology, with the sequel, Sidhe-Devil
) and an homage to the pulp magazines of the 30s. Most of it takes place on the Fair World, a kind of alter-dimensional twin of Earth (called the Grim World) that was the basis for our legends of magic and elves. The technology runs about 60 years behind ours, so you have magic and airships, elves and iron-framed skyscrapers. And yes, the inhabitants of the Fair world are allergic to iron, which is a plot point. It's not steampunk, though - in fact, some of their tech is greener than ours. The story is excellent, the pacing tight, and all the characters are distinct and definitely have their own voices.
The link up there will take you to the full novel, available online for free from Baen eBooks. The first seven chapters of the sequel
are up as well, but for the full version you'll have to hunt down a (sadly out of print) copy. (Never know, you might be surprised; my copy of Sidhe-Devil
has an inscription from the author.)What I'm Currently Reading
Still working on Otherland: City of Golden Shadows
by Tad Williams. It has started to pick up in the latter half of the book, with the disparate threads starting to weave together and make more sense. I may reconsider not reading the second one in the series. We'll see.The Bone Key: The Necromantic Mysteries of Kyle Murchison Booth
by Sarah Monette. Set in an unnamed city during the early twentieth century, this is a series of 10 short stories about the title character (Booth, no one calls him Kyle) and the bizarre and horrifying events that find him after his first unwilling brush with the occult. Booth isn't a typical protagonist: he's painfully shy, awkward, clumsy, stammering, uncertain. These are not bad things; they make him feel like a real person who gets dropped into situations most people only have nightmares about. I think I've only had this a couple of months and I keep rereading it! it's just so perfect.
Continuing on a theme, apparently, I'm also rereading The Goblin Emperor
by Katherin Addison (pen name of Sarah Monette). I didn't mean
to, I just took it down to verify something in a fanfic and got (willingly) drawn in again.
The book centres around Maia, a young half-elf/half-goblin who is the youngest son of the reigning Emperor and who unexpectedly inherits his father's throne when his father and brothers die in an airship crash. Maia was the fourth son, and has been effectively living in exile under the care of a cousin since the death of his mother, the Empress Chenelo. Unprepared for the role, and unprepared for court, the plot centres around Maia's growth into becoming Emperor and the mystery behind the crash of the airship.What I'm Reading Next
The list remains the same from last week: either, The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There
by Catherynne M. Valente, sequel to The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
, The Lies of Locke Lamora
by Scott Lynch, or Swordspoint
by Ellen Kushner if it's delivered before I finish Otherland
and/or pick up another book.Swordspoint
has not been delivered, but The Privilege of the Sword
came today. So I have that to look forward to as well. (And a book stack that may soon be tall as I am...)