Fevered Star by Rebecca Roanhorse

Fevered Star by Rebecca Roanhorse

I hate to tell you to go back and read Black Sun before starting Fevered Star, but you really should. And the good news is the "to be continued" ending won't bother you nearly as much as it did me if you can head straight into this one. Not that this one has a very satisfying ending either, but it's at least not quite as cliffhanger. As before, the world (a weaving of pre-Colombian influences) is strongly engaging and well developed, with fascinating characters and culture. We have several viewpoints in Fevered Star, some more compelling than others. We learn more about our avatar's powers and about their own interior struggles. We see the people that surround them, those who love them, hate them, or want to use them. Heroes and villains are very much a matter of perspective. There's a war coming and the book is all about forming alliances and putting people in the right places, which can...
Read More
The Fields by Erin Young

The Fields by Erin Young

The Fields was a bit too much for me. Riley Fisher, with a new promotion under her belt, is in charge of the investigation of the gruesome death of a woman found in the middle of a corn field, a woman who was Riley's friend when they were teenagers. Too much: Backstory: Riley was friends with the woman, but there's also another more tenuous personal connection to the case. I'm not a fan of dwelling on backstories and if this is actually the first of the series and relied so heavily on Riley's past, I'm not sure I want to read the next.Gruesome details: I read a lot of mysteries. The details here made me flinch and were just gross. For me they were over the top, and not in an enjoyable way.Bad decisions: The detectives in books like this always make some questionable decisions, and Riley is no exception. There are also some decisions that put a child in danger,...
Read More
A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine

A Desolation Called Peace by Arkady Martine

First, go read A Memory Called Empire if you haven't yet. It's a fabulous book and I'm not sure you can fully understand/ enjoy A Desolation Called Peace without it. It's where we are first introduced to the Teixcalaan Empire, which spans across galaxies. It's an empire full of political intrigue and poetry. We also met Mahit Dzmare, the ambassador to Teixcalaan from Lsel Station, a small, independent mining space station with its own culture, identity, and most importantly technology. Lsel creates imagos, memory imprints that are designed to meld into the personality of the wearer and preserve the preceding generations of knowledge. This time around we meet the aliens, the ones killing people on the edges of the Teixalaan Empire. There is so much I could say about this book. The world-building is amazing and the aliens interesting, although maybe not unique. The main characters, and there are several, are each fully drawn with strengths and flaws and...
Read More
Mai Tais for the Lost by Mia V. Moss

Mai Tais for the Lost by Mia V. Moss

I absolutely love the world Moss created in Mai Tais for the Lost. All those who could, mostly the rich, have left the surface of Earth for underwater habitats. Life, at least for the lucky, is full of parties, designer drugs, and alcohol. Of course, they also brought with them security/ law enforcement and people to do the menial tasks of life, like cleaning. Marrow Nightingale was once one of the lower classes, but through a quirk of fate, was adopted by the rich and famous Nightingales. She drinks and parties with the upper classes, but isn't at heart one of them. She is, however, the only private detective in Electric Blue Moon and her brother has been murdered. Marrow is a tough young woman, both overly trusting and cynical. She's definitely an alcoholic and one of those detectives who rub those in authority the wrong way. Mai Tais for the Lost is basically noir with a sci-fi backdrop and...
Read More
A Harvest Murder by Frances Evesham

A Harvest Murder by Frances Evesham

A Harvest Murder is the third of the Ham Hill mysteries. It can be read as a stand-alone, but I think, like most series, you get a fuller feel for the characters if you read them in order. We have two mysteries here. The first is the missing farmer. It's no surprise he ends up dead - the title is A Harvest Murder - but who killed him is unclear. The second mystery is who is harassing Dan, the local artist. First, one of his donkeys is kidnapped and brought back, then one of his paintings in a gallery is destroyed. Our sleuths are Imogen, who owns the local hotel, and former detective, Adam, who owns a local bar. A lot of the scenes take place in those locations, where people gather and talk and air their suspicions. The mysteries are well done, with several clues and enough suspects to keep you guessing. The townsfolk are a typically mixed...
Read More
Maigret in Holland by Georges Simenon

Maigret in Holland by Georges Simenon

Maigret in Holland was perhaps not my best choice for my first Maigret read, but it was the only one the used bookstore in town had. Maigret is not in France here, he's been called to Holland where a French national is being detained under suspicion of murder. Maigret does not speak any Dutch, which slows his investigation some. He interviews the main characters in the story with varying degrees of success depending on their knowledge of the French language. The small town and characters are described well, wanting to keep their secrets and the status quo. Maigret is intelligent and observant. I'd like to read another when he is on his home turf. ...
Read More