Twelve books read this month as I took some effort to get my totals up. It brings my total number of books read in the first half of 2015 up to fortynine, putting me more or less on course for my goal of a hundred. As you can see below, now I just need to catch up with my reviewing too…
A Very British Genre — Paul Kincaid
A dated (1995) but still usable short introduction to the history of science fiction & fantasy as a British genre. As with a history, it gets slightly less usable the closer it comes to its present. Also interesting to see as a time capsule of what British SFF was like twenty years ago, before so many of the current giants had even started getting published, or had just begun to do so.
The Three-Body Problem — Cixin Liu
One of the three non-Puppy candidates for the Best Novel Hugo, a very Asimovian hard science fiction story. Asimovian because it’s all about ideas and characterisation falls somewhat by the wayside.
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August — Claire North
Winner of the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. Harry August relives his own life over and over and he’s not the only one. The end of the world was always coming, but each new life it comes faster…
The Tropic of Serpents — Marie Brennan
The second book in the series of Faux-Georgian natural history fantasy memoirs of a lady dragonist. Great fun, intelligently written and well done dragons are always interesting.
The Renaissance at War — Thomas F. Arnold
One in a series of military history chapbooks I picked up, this is a very readable introduction to the topic of European warfare in the late fifteenth and sixteenth century.
Hero Complex — Sean O’Hara
Anime influenced superhero crack fic.
Warfare in the Seventeenth Century — John Childs
Followup to the Renaissance book. Interesting but of course Eurocentric.
Wave without a Shore — C. J. Cherryh
A short, early philosophical science fiction novel from Cherryh.
The Amoeba in the Room — Nicholas P. Money
A nicely readable introduction to the wonderful world of microbiotic life, sometimes marred with unfortunate attempts at humour.
A Man of Three Worlds — Mercedes García-Arenal & Gerard Wiegers
A very interesting biography/history of Samuel Pallache, a Moroccan Jew who worked as an agent, merchant, spy, arms dealer and more around the turn of the seventeenth century, working for the sultan of Morocco, the Dutch Republic and others.
At the Seventh Level — Suzette Haden Elgin
One of those somewhat forgotten and overlooked female authors, who sadly died earlier this year. This was the first novel of hers I’d read and it was an interesting one.
Throne of the Crescent Moon — Saladin Ahmed
Well done oriental fantasy that reminded me slightly of N. K. Jemisin’s Killing Moon duology.