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Reviews from January 2016 (22)

Beginning 2016 on a high note

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms  (Inheritance Trilogy, volume 1)

By N. K. Jemisin  

2 Jan, 2016

Miscellaneous Reviews


2010’s The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is the first volume in N. K. Jemisin’s Inheritance Trilogy.

You’d think that being recognized as a member of the family that rules the world would be an occasion for celebration. Not for Yeine. She distrusts her grandfather, whom she believes to have sent the assassins who killed her mother (his own daughter!). Taking her place in the Arameri court in the great city of Sky means that she is effectively exiled from her beloved homeland of Darr, forced to live among cruel overlords whose ways are both alien and abhorrent. Poor Yeine will suffer for her unwanted elevation.

Her grandfather Dekarta already had two heirs: the cruel and malevolent Scimina and her drunken brother Relad. Having acknowledged Yeine as an Arameri, Dekarta takes the additional step of designating her as his third heir. This is in no way a favour to Yeine. Years ago there were four heirs but two have died; Arameri see politics as a full contact sport. As a rival heir to Scimina and Relad, Yeine is now a target for her more powerful and dangerous kin. 

And then there’s the matter of the gods.

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A Girl and Her Robot

The Silver Metal Lover  (Silver Metal Lover, volume 1)

By Tanith Lee  

1 Jan, 2016

A Year of Tanith Lee


1981’s The Silver Metal Lover is the first volume in Tanith Lee’s Silver Metal Lover duology; in fact, until 2005 it was the only volume in that series.

This novel, in which we learn that sixteen-year-old girls are not cold engines of pure logic, reminded me quite a lot of the two Four-BEE novels; like the nameless narrator of those two novels, Jane is a child of privilege. It’s true that a third of the world’s human population died when the Asteroid grazed Earth, but that was before Jane was born. It is also true that many have no hope of employment, but thanks to her mother’s vast fortune this does not seem likely to be relevant to Jane. 

But there are also quite a few differences between Jane and the unnamed narrator of the Four-BEE novels.…

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