Book Review: The Border Keeper

Hello Everyone,

Title: The Border Keeper

Author: Kerstin Hall

Series: Book 1

Genre: Fantasy

Publisher: Tor dot com

Page Count: 300

Goodreads Summary:

She lived where the railway tracks met the saltpan, on the Ahri side of the shadowline. In the old days, when people still talked about her, she was known as the end-of-the-line woman.

Vasethe, a man with a troubled past, comes to seek a favor from a woman who is not what she seems, and must enter the nine hundred and ninety-nine realms of Mkalis, the world of spirits, where gods and demons wage endless war.

The Border Keeper spins wonders both epic—the Byzantine bureaucracy of hundreds of demon realms, impossible oceans, hidden fortresses—and devastatingly personal—a spear flung straight, the profound terror and power of motherhood. What Vasethe discovers in Mkalis threatens to bring his own secrets into light and throw both worlds into chaos.

My Thoughts:

Beautifully told, excellent execution. This is a strange, yet lyrical story of demons, gods, and more. Despite that this was less than 300 pages (240 exactly) it still packed a punch. Each chapter was new and interesting. I’m going to ponder this for ages.

Notes:

While I can write the characters names please don’t ask me to pronounce them. I honestly have no clue. I don’t do audiobooks though I may try to figure out how to say Vasethe.

My Review:

Vasethe goes to the Border Keeper for help. Eris, the name that he chooses to call the Border Keeper-for she has many names-is unimpressed with him. This whole book revolves around the pair of them, as Vasethe catches Eris up on current history, culture, people and more. Together the pair work together.

I can’t tell you more about the plot without giving away spoilers. There’s a quest involved, sort of, and more questions than there are answers. There’s a curse, and limited time in searching for that they hunt. There’s betrayals and confusion and lots of near death experiences. Magical and enchanting, I recommend this for fans that like unusual settings and great characters.

My Rating:

⭐ ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Book Review: Sisters of the Vast Black

Hello Everyone,

Such a lovely sci-fi cover.

Book Title: Sisters of the Vast Black

Book Author: Lina Rather

Series: Book One

Genre: Science Fiction

Publisher: Tom Doherty

Page Count: 150

Date Published: October 2019

~•~•~•~

Goodreads Summary:

The sisters of the Order of Saint Rita captain their living ship into the reaches of space in Lina Rather’s debut novella, Sisters of the Vast Black.

Years ago, Old Earth sent forth sisters and brothers into the vast dark of the prodigal colonies armed only with crucifixes and iron faith. Now, the sisters of the Order of Saint Rita are on an interstellar mission of mercy aboard Our Lady of Impossible Constellations, a living, breathing ship which seems determined to develop a will of its own.

When the order receives a distress call from a newly-formed colony, the sisters discover that the bodies and souls in their care—and that of the galactic diaspora—are in danger. And not from void beyond, but from the nascent Central Governance and the Church itself.

My Thoughts:

It took me a bit to actually get into the novella. The pacing was slow, off in a way, and I would have liked more. There is a sequel out now so I’ll happily be finding that at my library hopefully or purchasing both books. The author wrote nuns in space on board a living ship, a kind of slug? It gave me odd vibes of that old sci-fi tv series, Farscape. But with nuns.

There’s a lot of theology and debate in the first part of the book, but then it spirals into action and usual space plots. The little novella took only an hour to read but already I want to reread it and see if I’ve missed anything. Though I liked it, I don’t know how to review this without massive spoilers. So I’ll leave it here and let you all figure out how good it is. Highly recommend for all sci-fi fans.

My Rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Ebook Review: Brambles

Hello all,

New to me author and first review of October!

I have never read anything by Intisar Khanani but now she is high on my watch list. This is the short prequel to Thorn, that is the explanation of what Princess Alyrra had done to earn the court and her mother and brother’s hatred. (As described through Google/Goodreads). I won’t give away spoilers but I will list trigger warnings.

Trigger Warnings: bullying, mentions of flogging/beating, mistreatment of servants, abuse, emotional abuse?, physical abuse, and attempted murder

Now I’m unsure if it’s actually emotional abuse, but I feel it is. I can’t say without spoilers as it is a short story, but this is pretty hefty in how servants and the princess are treated. I would go in this with caution, if any of these triggers apply to you.

Goodreads Summary:

In the kingdom of Adania, everyone knows what Princess Alyrra did to earn the court’s contempt, her mother’s disdain, and her brother’s hatred.

She betrayed her own.

Yet, the truth hides another story, one of honor and honesty, of a princess gambling her own life for another’s. It’s a tale of courage and consequences, and a choice that can never be undone.

A short story prequel to her multi-starred fantasy, Thorn, Intisar Khanani’s “Brambles” gives Alyrra’s account of what really happened all those years ago, and how a few critical days turned her life into a daily fight for survival.

~•~•~•~

My Thoughts:

For 40 pages I was enchanted by this world. Valka was a villain you just couldn’t help but get strong feelings for in all the negative ways. Princess Alyrra was definitely a character to root for and her brother obviously needs a lesson in manners. Forty pages and yet I’m still pondering all the actions and characters in this novella.

My Rating:

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

First read of the month gets five stars! I’m hopeful that this is a good sign. Happy reading to all!

Until next time,

-Pass Me That Book

Paperback Book Review: Binti

BintiCover

Title: Binti

Author: Nnedi Okorafor

Series: 1 of ?

Genre: Science Fiction

Page Count 91

Publisher:  Tor

Type of Book: Paperback, Novella

Rated: 4.9/5 Stars!

Binti was a belated Christmas present by my grandmother who asked what I wanted this year, and I said books. I gave her a list of some of the most anticipated reads, and what kind of things I liked, and she found Binti among them. Granted, it was a lot shorter than either of us realized, but it was also very entertaining. My only single complaint was how short it is! I want more! 91 pages isn’t nearly enough for the excellent world-building that the author does!

I’ve been seeing this book pop up all over my social blogs that I follow, and am glad to jump on the band-wagon while the book is still fresh and popular. I also am pleased to add to the hype of this book, even despite how ridiculously short this book is. It was also yet another read for my mother, who only has time for ridiculously short books, and she too enjoyed this one immensely.

I really am interested to see if this will be turned into a television show or movie set. It would be a fascinating movie/tv show, and I know a lot of people would be eager to see it if it came to be.

Binti, herself, is one of my most favorite literary characters of the year. I really admire her strength in going out and achieving her dreams…even if her dreams are waylaid by mysterious dangerous aliens that only she can communicate with. I really felt as though Binti was a different version of Uhura from Star Trek, but only more bad ass than usual!

I can’t say enough good things about Binti. It was wonderful, epic, grand in scope. The characters were fascinating, and her people were intriguing. I loved everything about Binti, but I do wish that it was longer, and just…

I need more.

I rate this book an almost even 5 stars, only one part of a star taken off because its so short.

And now, as I’m adding the rest of the Binti series to my Amazon wishlist, you can,

-Pass Me That Book

 

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