New Books and ARCs, 4/10/20
Posted on April 10, 2020 Posted by John Scalzi 10 Comments
A very fine stack, if I say so myself. Let me know what intrigues you in the comments.
Also, as a matter of process, I should note that for a while you might expect to see fewer stacks of new books and ARCs. Not because I’m less interested in posting in them, or (as would have been the case until recently) because I’m traveling on a book tour. No, it’s strictly because fewer physical books and ARCs are coming to the house as publishers minimize warehouse staff and publicity people work from home. In time I expect things will change and physical books will be sent more often. In the meantime, I’ll still do them if and whenever enough are sent for a proper stack.
I will always read a new Catherine Asaro novel.
I’ve already read Castaway Resolution and Knife Children. They were good.
Nancy Kress. I loved the Beggars series and somehow have not read much from the author since. I’m not sure how I let that happen, but I hope I can correct the situation soon. Maybe use some of this unplanned free time to do so.
Thank you for the reminder!
Mmm! Bujold, Kress, and Lansdale. Oh and Blaylock! Definitely some promising stuff in this stack.
@Tanek: Kress’s “Probability” series starts a bit slow, but the third book is one of the best she’s ever written! And her recent “Yesterday’s Kin” series was simply outstanding!
I love all of Bujold’s books, esp the Vorkosigan series. But the Sharing Knife quartet is great too and Knife Children is a great follow-up. I recommend people read the first 4 Sharing Knife books and then The Knife Children. It will have more meaning then.
Yes, I was also looking at the Kress book. And now there’s even more Bujold I haven’t read.
I wonder what it’d be like to live in a house of assassins. I imagine disputes over dishes being left in the sink would be resolved abruptly, followed by further disputes about the blood on the floor not being cleaned up, and, well.
Are assassins concerned about the neighborhood or the local schools when they buy a house together? I imagine they’d want to join a local, organic grocery co-op. You gotta stay healthy when you could be called on to assassinate at a moment’s notice. Oh, and of course the dry cleaners should be close to hand.
NICE! Thanks John, new Chadwick I hadn’t even realized was out, instabuy.
And a big lol @tbmaddux too. I suspect living in a house of assassins would lead to serious sleep deprivation. So I’m totally prepped, let’s shoot a pilot!
Nice Interview on Weekend edition!
Heard the interview with Scott Simon – 2 of my favorite people put my day on a much more positive track. BTW, you are only the 2nd author I have ever reached out to…the other was Spider Robinson.
I read “Knife Children” when it first came out in ebook form, and IMO it is a worthy sequel to the Sharing Knife books. However, be warned, it is not a full-length novel, but a novella. Also, again in my view, it is not a good place to start reading bout the Sharing Knife world. It does stand on its own, sort of, but lots of events from the Sharing Knife books are referred to, but not explained, and the world-building (largely from the first 2 Sharing Knife books) is mostly taken for granted. If you haven’t read the four novels, read them first, they are well worth it anyway.Then this novella will work nicely, and be a welcoem continuation, and leave one wanting still more, at least it left me wanting more
Two quibbles about the sharing knife world
First: Bujold has said that the setting in Sharing Knife, particularly the area from Lumpton Market and West Blue to Glassforge, is significantly based on 1830s Ohio (as it came to her in family stories, backed by historical research). But the economy of 1830s Ohio only worked because Ohio was in economic contact with the industrialized East Coast, and through that with Europe, especially England, which was still more industrialized. Those parts of our world have no counterparts in the SK world, and it is hard to see how the economy works. Another aspect of this: the keelboat trade along the Mississippi (the model for the trade along the Grace) paid because it was a contact with more developed areas, and through them with Europe. But it is hard to see what the keelboaters along the grace are trading for, and why.
Second, much as I hate to say it,, the final volume makes Sharing knife into a second-order idiot plot.
Spoilers ahead, be warned!
The Lakewalkers are, in general, excellent archers. Tey also know that all that is needed is to get a sharing knife into a malice, even just the tip, to do away with the malice. They further know that the greatest danger is the need to get within arm’s reach of the malice. So why has no one in centuries tried fastening a knife to an arrow or crossbow bolt? How is it possible for this to be a new innovative idea? Still perhaps people can be that stubborn — I must remember the Icelandic settlers in Greenland who starved after eating their cattle because they rejected fish as fit for humans to eat (as per Diamond’s _Collapse_). But it still grates on me when I re-read the otherwise excellent _Horizon_