Posts Categorized: sci fi or futuristic

Ancillary Sword: Review

Ancillary Sword: Review

Breq is a spaceship. Or, rather, she used to be. Once the AI consciousness of the ship known as Justice of Toren, Breq is now contained in a single ancillary (the how and why of which is detailed in Ancillary Justice). Perhaps some more explanation? An ancillary is a human body (most often a civilian casualty) with a ship’s consciousness and some rather tricked out implants that make them super soldiers. Ancillaries are an extension of the ship and see and know everything the ship does. Ships have many ancillaries and they are all collectively the same entity. When a human becomes an ancillary the person they were is dead forever. Through such means the Radchaai Empire has been able to conquer and colonize much of humanity. Okay, that’s as simple a primer I can do without giving too much away! Man, I just love this series. Finally, finally! Here… Read more »

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Echoes of Us: guest post + giveaway

Echoes of Us: guest post + giveaway

Last year, Kat Zhang shared her journey to publication story with us, speaking to her experiences as a young author juggling school, writing, and the publishing industry. It seems fitting that with Echoes of Us, the last book in her dystopian Hybrid Chronicles releasing this month, Kat is back with us to talk about the series coming to an end, and how her life has changed because of it. After all, we as fans get emotional when favorite series come to an end, so it’s only natural that authors get sentimental, too! If you haven’t tried this series yet and you enjoy science fiction with a more introspective bent, you must pick this one up sometime. I’d recommend it to fans of thoughtful, character-driven books like The Lost Girl. Saying Goodbye to a Series by Kat Zhang It’s a cool thing to have books that release almost exactly one year… Read more »

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The Body Electric: Beth Revis guest post + giveaway

The Body Electric: Beth Revis guest post + giveaway

When a series ends, sometimes we just aren’t ready to let go of the characters we’ve come to love. Beth Revis’ Across the Universe trilogy is a favorite of many YA scifi readers, so everyone was understandably excited when the author announced that she would be releasing a follow-up story this year entitled The Body Electric! I was intrigued to hear that the author is self-publishing this new novel, which to me speaks to the degree of her love for her characters and for her fans. The author told me that only 350 copies of a very special edition will be printed, which will be available exclusively at her local bookshop Malaprops and at booksignings until they sell out. You can learn more about this fascinating experiment and the various other formats available in yesterday’s Publishers Weekly article on out-of-the box promotions. In an increasingly crowded marketplace, I think it’s… Read more »

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Patrick Ness giveaway

Patrick Ness giveaway

Sometimes you can read a single book by an author and it has such an impact that you know you’ll always check out the rest of his work, regardless of subject or style. That’s how I felt after sobbing my way through the poignant book A Monster Calls, and after reading his weirdly dreamy scifi novel More Than This, that feeling has only intensified. The latter is a terrific blend of I Am Legend + Twilight Zone + The Matrix, but tinged with a thoughtful, still moodiness that I really liked. It’s a bit of a cautionary tale re: technology, and I loved the story structure, characters, and writing. Young Thomasz has particularly great speech patterns and dialogue, and the story never feels cliche or boring–no small feat when the first 30% consists almost entirely of Seth on his own. It asks more questions than it answers, but then again,… Read more »

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The Girl with All the Gifts: review

The Girl with All the Gifts: review

This is the story of a girl, locked in a room, who is strapped into a chair every morning while a man holds a gun to her head. She’s wheeled into a classroom in which there are other kids strapped into chairs just like hers, where a woman teaches them lessons that they will probably never need to learn. The Girl with All the Gifts is difficult to review, because it’s one of those stories that’s best enjoyed if you know next to nothing about it. It isn’t necessarily difficult to figure out what’s going on, but the meticulously crafted narrative is a pleasure to experience every step of the way, particularly in the beginning chapters inside 10-year-old Melanie’s head, when the author allows the reader to put together pieces of a puzzle that Melanie herself doesn’t even know exists. It’s brilliant writing that pulls off the trick of a… Read more »

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Classic MG Discussion: A Wrinkle in Time

Classic MG Discussion: A Wrinkle in Time

WWEEE ARREHHERRE! It’s time to discuss the seminal classic A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. If you’re joining us for the first time, welcome, welcome! Feel free to discuss your thoughts in the comments below, and we’ll respond to you as soon as we can. (It’s a little nutty at the moment, but we’ll do our best–promise.) And if you’re one of our returning friends, we’re happy to see you! Hope you’re doing well with your 2014 classics challenge? I have to say, I really appreciate the fact that this series–and our accountability to you guys–is forcing me to make time to do something I enjoy so much. So thank you for joining us! Onwards to the discussion. As always, spoilers are ahead.   Wendy: Although this was a favorite of mine as a teenager, it’s been years since I read this book. I cannot believe how familiar it all… Read more »

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Scan: Review + Giveaway

Scan: Review + Giveaway

So one way to succinctly summarize Scan is “Junior MacGyver vs. the Aliens.” Okay, there is more to it than that, but that is the basic gist. We follow the adventures of Tate Archer as he unwittingly unleashes a secret and powerful alien horde on his family. Kids these days! For me, the strongest point of the book was the characterization. For being a MacGyver-level, 11 language speaking, hacker, chemistry genius, Tate comes off as a normal teenage boy. He makes some really dumb (but understandable) mistakes. Sometimes he says the wrong things to his girlfriend, Christina. Perhaps he was even too normal in some ways. At the very beginning of the book Tate’s POV is just so obnoxiously male. He berates himself for being “a pussy.” His thoughts and the way he looks at Christina occasionally rove toward “leer” territory, but is balanced by how much you can tell that Tate really loves… Read more »

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