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Reviews from August 2018 (22)

Near Beyond the Moon

Mare Internum

By Der-Shing Helmer 

30 Aug, 2018

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Der-shing Helmers Mare Internum is an ongoing hard-SF webcomic. 

Doctor Mike Fisher is one of the elite few chosen to explore Mars, now in the initial stages of colonization. Or rather, he was. Bitter, alarmingly hostile, and socially isolated, he was fired after the loss of his artificially intelligent LEVi robot in the mysterious catacombs under the Martian surface. As soon as transportation is available, he will be sent back to Earth. 

Before he goes, however, newly arrived Doctor Rebekah Bex” Egunsola would like to take advantage of Mike’s EVA skills. Initially reluctant to venture back into the Martian caves, Mike allows himself to be talked around. It’s just one quick foray into the labyrinth. What could go wrong? 

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That Sacred Core That Burns Inside Of Me

Hero Tales, book 1

By Hiromu Arakawa 

29 Aug, 2018

Translation

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Hero Tales, volume 1 collects the first three issues of Huang Jin Zhou and Hiromu Arakawa’s Jūshin Enbu.

Taitou hates the Empire. Reforming the corrupt state seems impossible. At least it is for a hot-headed young man living out in the sticks. He settles for beating up imperial functionaries whenever they pass by his home town. 

Taitou has potential of which he is utterly unaware. His grandfather knows full well what power Taitou has within him and how to enable Taitou to draw on it. Step one: orchestrate Taitou’s humiliating loss to another martial artist. 

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I’m Gonna See Ya’

I am Princess X

By Cherie Priest 

28 Aug, 2018

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2016’s I Am Princess X is a standalone young-adult thriller by Cherie Priest. It features illustrations by Kali Ciesemier. 

Once upon a time there were two schoolgirls, artist Libby and writer May. Together, they created a shared fantasy world, ruled over by Princess X. Their partnership came to an abrupt, violent end when the car containing Libby and her mother went through a bridge guard rail and into the waters below. 

May did her best to convince herself that Libby somehow survived. By the time May was sixteen, she had to accept what everyone around her believed to be true: Libby was dead. 

Then the stickers start appearing in Seattle windows. 

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A Secret Just Between You And Me

The Other Side of the Moon

By Meriol Trevor 

23 Aug, 2018

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Meriol Trevor’s 1957 The Other Side of the Moon is a standalone juvenile SF novel. 

The Kingville Lunar Expedition did not intend to take an untrained boy on their mission to the Moon. Nor did Gil Pentfoyle intend to stow away. Having snuck on board to play spaceman, Gil fell asleep. The busy crew overlooked the boy until the expedition was well on its way to Earth’s satellite. 

Although displeased to discover the stowaway, Captain Raider doesn’t airlock Gil. Perhaps this is because Gil’s brother, the expedition botanist1, might object. Perhaps this is because the captain is decent guy. Besides … the expedition already has a useless member, the expedition sponsor’s son Tracy. Gil makes two of them. (Perhaps three; see1.)

Turns out that the Moon is a surprising place. 

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If Your Wings Are Broken

Noragami, book 4

By Adachitoka 

22 Aug, 2018

Translation

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Noragami, Volume Four collects issues 12 to 15 of Adachitoka’s on-going series about the stray god Yato and his peers: 

  • To Kill, or Not To Kill” (きる、きらない Kiru, Kiranai”), 

  • Omen” (兆し Kizashi”),

  • Her Memories” (彼女の思い出 Kanojo no Omoide”), 

  • That Which Withers” (枯れゆくもの Kare Yuku Mono”). 

Having survived his servant Yukini’s flirtation with corruption, Yato must now figure out how to help his human friend Hiyori. 

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I’ve Just Seen a Face

Komarr  (Miles Vorkosigan, book 9)

By Lois McMaster Bujold 

17 Aug, 2018

A Bunch of Bujolds

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1998’s Komarr is the ninth volume in Lois McMaster Bujold’s Miles Vorkosigan series. 

Barrayaran-conquered Komarr depends on its soletta array, which concentrates the feeble output of its sun, for marginal habitability and slowly progressing terraforming. When half the array is wrecked by a colliding spacecraft, it’s up to Imperial Auditor Georg Vorthys to determine whether this was a tragic mishap or deliberate sabotage. 

Accompanying Vorthys is the most junior Imperial Auditor, Miles Vorkosigan. 

Ahoy! Spoilers ahead! 

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