The “crabby customer” is a giant crab monster! This crab monster is the closest thing Karkat has to parental caregiver. Trolls are brood parasites who are adopted by monsters known as “lusus naturae.” After troll grubs pupate in the brood caverns and complete a number of trials, they are chosen by one of these lusus naturae who take them to the surface where “carpenter droids” build them homes to their specifications. It should be noted that the majority of adult trolls are not on the surface of the planet. Alternia is pretty much The Girl Who Owned a Lord of the Flies City Jungle Book.
Trolls sure are weird! (This is going to be a continuing refrain.) Continue reading
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In this book, Gustav Adolph’s cousin quietly investigates the circumstances around Chancellor Oxenstierna’s power grab and the ensuing succession crisis, Gretchen, the Committees of Correspondence defend Dresden, and various other groups, rise in opposition to Oxenstierna’s attempt to take over the government. (And are able to play it quite convincingly that they’re on the side of the angels–because they are–since Oxenstierna is deliberately trying to change the entire system that had already been decided upon by everyone, and everyone else are continuing to play by the rules already deciding on and more or less fighting back to maintain those rules.) Continue reading
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Tiassa takes place from multiple viewpoints and within a broad timeline. At the center of the story is a silver tiassa, a figurine with great and mysterious powers that had been created by a goddess. Aliera’s time and space travelling (technically paradoxical) daughter Devera steals (okay, borrows) the object and leaves it with whomever she feels needs it the most. The tiassa has an agenda of its own however and almost has as many adventures as the people (particularly Vlad) that come into contact with it.
Roc, 484 pgs.
Another book where they be changing the laws of physics, and magic is afoot. (Or at least science that is indistinguishable from magic.) This is the latest of Stirling’s Nantucket/Change books where the island of Nantucket is transposed into the past, (and the past version of Nantucket is now in the present) and the laws of physics are tinkered with in the present so that firearms and combustion engines don’t work anymore. And of course, stuff happens. Continue reading
Translated by Jim Hubbert
Haikasoru, 196 pgs
In most of the science fiction I read growing up, changing the time line is generally a Bad Thing. Killing Hitler in the cradle will simply result in a more horrible dictator arising. (Actually, I don’t think this was in an actual story, this was a Theory advocated by an acquaintance of mine who believed that this would be a logical consequence, though I’m not sure why or how). If you squish a butterfly while hunting a dinosaur, it can result in long lasting and unexpected repercussions and also incorrect spelling. (Or it results in getting sat on by a brontosaurus.) And of course, killing your own grandpa may result in finding out that your grandmother was unfaithful.