Disturbing the Universe

David L Clements, science and science fiction

Books Read 2019 Part 1

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New York 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson – an excellent book about the effects of climate change, about community, and about actor networks. Highly recommended.

Take Back the Sky by Greg Bear – the end of the trilogy that began with War Dogs. As the perspective has got bigger the agency and significance of the main characters has got less, which I’ve found in a number of big picture Bear books over the years.

The Million by Karl Schroeder – the other side of the Lockstep universe, with internecine conflicts among the million people who look after the Earth when everyone else is asleep.

Genesis by Robert Hazen – over 10 years old but still an excellent book on our ideas about the origin of life on Earth. Hazen is in favour of hydrothermal vents, as am I, but he knows far more chemistry and biology than me so his opinion probably should carry more weight.

One Way by Simon Morden – a killer is loose among the indentured builders of the first Mars base, and there is a distinct smell of rat in the air.

Binti Home by Nnedi Okorafor – second instalment in the trilogy of novellas, and we get to see Binti at the university the size of a planet and back at her home in Africa.

Lies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovich – another fun ride in the ±Rivers of London series, and some long running plot threads are tied up, but others grow. Trying to be spoiler free here.

Ancillary Mercy by Ann Leckie – the trilogy that started when Ancilary Justice blew into SF reaches its end.

Stone Sky by NK Jemisin – another end of trilogy book (that’s three so far!) as we find out what is really going on in the world of the Broken Earth. I felt book 2 didn’t work so well, but this brings the story to a very satisfying conclusion.

Nightfall Berlin by Jack Grimwood – sequel to Moskva and an excellent return to the murky depths of cold war Europe.

Stone Mad by Elizabeth Bear – a novella that acts as a sequel to the excellent Karen Memory.

Shadow Captain by Alastair Reynolds – a return the the fascinating world of Revenger with more intrigue and space piracy in a fully rebuilt Solar System that Dyson would only vaguely recognise.

Dreams Before the Start of Time by Anne Charnock – fascinating book looking at the future of families and reproduction, very well written and deserving of its Clarke award.

Embers of War by Gareth Powell – entertaining space opera with an intelligent ship full of people with multiple agendas on what is meant to be a rescue mission and turns out to be much more.

Perihilion Summer by Greg Egan – a close pass by a wandering black hole brings huge changes to the Earth and life becomes a race for survival.

The Three Body Problem by Cixin Liu – chinese SF at its best, though I think it suffered a little from the hype surrounding it in the sense that I was expecting something even more astounding.

A novel that is not being called The Lost Boys by Charles Stross – a different view of life under the New Management in the Laundry universe, and what may be the first novel in a spin off series. Treasure hunts and machinations around a house of dreams.

Luna Moon Rising by Ian McDonald – another trilogy end, and a very good one as the family wars on the colonised Moon reach their climax.

Author: davecl

Astronomy, science, science fiction

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