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Blog Posts from February 2024 (7)

February 2024 in Review

29 Feb, 2024


This is where the monthly reports get complicated, as I need to add numbers and get the correct sums. Nothing startling this month, aside from representative democracy and oligarchy being tied for first place. Oh, and I noticed a glaring typo in the January stats, since fixed.

February 2024

21 works reviewed. 12 by women (57%), 9 by men (43%), 0 by a non-binary author (0%), 0 by authors whose gender is unknown (0%), and 7 by POC (33%).

2024 to Date

43 works reviewed. 25 by women (58%), 18 by men (42%), 0 by a 
non-binary author (0%), 0 by authors whose gender is unknown (0%), and 16 by POC (37%).

Grand Total to Date

2572 works reviewed. 1437 by women (56%), 1073 by men (42%), 40 by non-binary authors (2%), 22 by authors whose gender is unknown (1%), and 787.75 by POC (30%).

Government Types February 2024

Total 21, Not Applicable 4 (14%), Unclear 1 (5%), Anarchy 1 (5%), Pure democracy 0 (0%), Representative democracy 6 (29%), Oligarchy 8 (38%), Autocracy 1 (5%).

Government Type 2024 TD

Total 43, Not Applicable 7 (16%), Unclear 2 (5%), An5archy 2 (5%),
Pure democracy 0 (0%), Representative democracy 15 (35%), Oligarchy 15 (35%), Autocracy 2 (5%).

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Books Received, February 17 — February 23

24 Feb, 2024


Wolf at the Door by J. Damask (May 2013)

Jan Xu, a Singaporean Chinese Lang (wolf), mother and daughter, receives a phone call from her sister, Marianne, who returns to Singapore with a new boyfriend and a hidden agenda. Is Jan Xu able to accept this new Marianne and a threat to her stable life? What can an ex-teen vigilante do? Welcome to Singapore, where the Myriad co-exist with ordinary humans; where ancient urges and needs wrestle with human ones. Where the Lang straddle between many worlds. 

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Books Received, February 10 — February 16

17 Feb, 2024


Lady Eve’s Last Con by Rebecca Fraimow (June 2024

Hearts will race and anti-grav boots will fly in this scifi rom-com perfect for fans of WINTER’S ORBIT and THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE.Ruth Johnson and her sister Jules have been small-time hustlers on the interstellar cruise lines for years. But then Jules fell in love with one of their targets, Esteban Mendez-Yuki, sole heir to the family insurance fortune. Esteban seemed to love her too, until she told him who she really was, at which point he fled without a word. Now Ruth is set on revenge: disguised as provincial debutante Evelyn Ojukwu and set for the swanky satellite New Monte, she’s going to make Esteban fall in love with her, then break his heart and take half his fortune. At least, that’s the plan. But Ruth hadn’t accounted for his older sister, Sol, a brilliant mind in a dashing suit… and much harder to fool. Sol is hot on Ruth’s tail, and as the two women learn each other’s tricks, Ruth must decide between going after the money and going after her heart. 

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What’s The Worst That Could Happen?

13 Feb, 2024


Astounded that I had somehow escaped reading Mark Clifton’s They’d Rather Be Right, a supporter commissioned a review.

The Clifton novel is notorious as the worst novel to win a Hugo Award1. Having to read it serves me right for not immediately saying no to the commission.

The commission got me to thinking

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Books Received, February 3 — February 9

10 Feb, 2024


The White Guy Dies First: 13 Scary Stories of Fear and Power by Terry J. Benton-Walker (July 2024)

13 SCARY STORIES. 13 AUTHORS OF COLOR. 13 TIMES WE SURVIVED… THE FIRST KILL.The White Guy Dies First includes thirteen scary stories by all-star contributors and this time, the white guy dies first. Killer clowns, a hungry hedge maze, and rich kids who got bored. Friendly cannibals, impossible slashers, and the dead who don’t stay dead.…A museum curator who despises diasporic inaccuracies.” A sweet girl and her diary of happy thoughts. An old house that just wants friends forever.… These stories are filled with ancient terrors and modern villains, but go ahead, go into the basement, step onto the old plantation, and open the magician’s mystery box because this time, the white guy dies first. 

Edited by Terry J. Benton-Walker, including stories from bestselling, award-winning, and up-and-coming contributors: Adiba Jaigirdar, Alexis Henderson, Chloe Gong, Faridah Àbíké-Íyímídé, H. E. Edgmon, Kalynn Bayron, Karen Strong, Kendare Blake, Lamar Giles, Mark Oshiro, Naseem Jamnia, Tiffany D. Jackson, and Terry J. Benton-Walker. 

A collection you’ll be dying to talk about… if you survive it.

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Books Received, January 27th — February 2

3 Feb, 2024


Mutant Year Zero: Ad Astra by Jens Alm et al (February 2024)

Ad Astra is a thrilling campaign module for Mutant: Year Zero that takes the player characters from the devastated surface of Earth into orbit, out into the solar system, and perhaps further still. Ad Astra can be played stand-alone or as a direct continuation of the Path to Eden campaign in the Mutant: Year Zero core rulebook.

The book also includes rules for playing Mutant: Year Zero in space and an overview of the solar system with ideas for further adventures.

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February 2024 Patreon Boost!

1 Feb, 2024


Good news! Fig, the cat above, about whom I was so pessimistic last month, rallied, survived surgery, survived the recovery – barely noticed his cone of shame – and was pronounced back to full health.

James Nicoll Reviews is supported by spontaneous donations, review commissions and Patreon subscribers. If you would like to commission a review, please see my guidelines. My Patreon is here. Spontaneous donations can be done via my Paypal.

Thanks to a commission, I have an idea for an exciting new review project. More on that when I get to the novel that inspired me. 

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