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Joined 1 year, 8 months ago

We're a plural system who loves queer & anarchist scifi.

But recently we just read a few randomly picked up mystery books in a row, in German, and we tend to review books in the language we read them in. That or similar may happen again, be warned.

No reading goals, just feelings.

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Catship's books

Currently Reading (View all 7)

Pantopia (Hardcover, Deutsch language, 2022, FISCHER TOR) 3 stars

Eine bessere Welt ist möglich! Theresa Hannig, die Autorin von "Die Optimierer", hat eine Utopie …


No rating

Ich würd nicht sagen, dass ich das Buch mag, aber ich mag einige Elemente davon und war am Ende ziemlich in der Geschichte drin.

Was ich mag: die KI, die Beziehungen, dass es ein wirklich detailliertes Gedankenexperiment ist.

Was ich nicht mag: Den Vibe? Die business-nerdigen Elemente? Das "es gibt genau eine Lösung und so sieht sie aus"? Ein paar Sachen, die ich nicht gut in Worte fassen kann, vor allem solche, die sich auf die aktuelle Realität beziehen.

Und von der MDMA-Dealer-Storyline war ich kein bisschen überzeugt. Bin jetzt allerdings neugierig, ob MDMA wirklich wie hier beschrieben verwendet wird in manchen Bubbles.

replied to Catship's status

Content warning spoilers for ending of Vera Wong's Unsolicited Advice for Murderers

Vera Wong's Unsolicited Advice for Murderers (2023, Penguin Publishing Group) No rating

Put the kettle on, there’s a mystery brewing… Tea-shop owner. Matchmaker. Detective?

Sixty-year-old self-proclaimed tea …


No rating

Sooooo. I found this pretty enjoyable, except that there was more discussion of (emotional) abuse and shitty asshole stuff than I'd thought. It's in a good way, though. So. I think this is a pretty nice story. Just. The epilogue has something that irritates me so much!!

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reviewed The Genesis of Misery by Neon Yang

The Genesis of Misery (Hardcover, 2022, Tor) 4 stars

An immersive, electrifying space-fantasy from Neon Yang, author of The Black Tides of Heaven, full …

The Genesis of Misery

4 stars

"Is there one among us who has not behaved badly in this tale?"

I would pitch this book as Gundam Joan of Arc. It follows the course of the life of Misery Nomaki :drum: who believes they are sick with the same void madness that claimed the life of their mother and causes them to hear the voice of an angel telling them what to do. They lie their way into being the foretold ninth messiah to try to get themselves out of larger trouble, but everybody believes them (and eventually they begin to wonder if maybe they're not lying to themselves after all).

I love Neon Yang's worldbuilding and characters. This book is set in the far future where humanity's exodus into the stars took them into a realm where a "nullvoid" epidemic warped people's bodies; they were saved by the Larex Forge who teaches them how to use …

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These Burning Stars (2023, Orbit) 4 stars

On a dusty backwater planet, occasional thief Jun Ironway has gotten her hands on the …

These Burning Stars

4 stars

A debut science fiction novel about secrets, genocide, and revenge.

I enjoyed all three point of view characters. Jun is a hacker with a secret past on the run. Esek is selfish, violent, and literally terrible, and yet she manages to be a captivating character. Chono is good-hearted and looks like a rule-following institutionalist, but her conflicting loyalties to people overrule her lawful tendencies. Chono and Esek are tied together by their relationships with Six, a mysterious figure who used to be a student with Chono; Esek spurning Six in the opening scene creates a feud that escalates out of control. I enjoyed the worldbuilding, but as you can see from this description, the heart of this book was in the relationships.

A content warning especially for genocide here. A good bit of the plot revolves around the Jeveni people; they were mostly killed on a small moon and the …

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Patternmaster (Paperback, 1995, Aspect) 4 stars

The combined mind-force of a telepathic race, Patternist thoughts can destroy, heal, rule. For the …

A bit of a let-down compared to Wild Seed

No rating

So, I burned through the whole patternmaster series in a matter of months, which is pretty unusual for me. I like to leave big gaps in between installments, so I don't get burned out on a story.

While the series is overall great, I really regret reading the books in chronological order, starting with Wild Seed, and ending with this one, because in publishing order, this is her first book and her first published novel ever. As is to be expected, as Butler's skills as a writer increase, the quality of these earlier and earlier published novels decreases. Patternmaster isn't necessarily bad, but it doesn't hold a candle to Wild Seed, or even Mind of my Mind and Clay's Ark. Not to mention that the stories become gradually less ambitious. So, the overall effect is that a series that starts as an epic world-spanning, century-spanning tale of conflict between two …

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Liberty's Daughter (Paperback, Fairwood Press LLC) 4 stars

Beck Garrison lives on a seastead — an archipelago of constructed platforms and old cruise …

Liberty's Daughter

4 stars

This is a near future story about Beck Garrison, a precocious teenager growing up on a libertarian seastead off the coast of California. Her part-time job is finding things (or people) for others, and this work gets her into things and places she's not supposed to, all while trying to stay out from under the eye of an overbearing father.

It's also got: Reality shows! Unions! (Un)believable backlash against said unions! Shitty controlling parents! Mad scientists!

This book certainly gets at everything you suspect would go wrong with a libertarian seastead. What situations would cause people to flee the United States to go there? What kind of immoral shady behavior would people get up to? What terrible capitalism is everybody living under? What sort of a sham of worker's rights even pretends like it exists here? BUT, if that were all this book were about, it'd be just another …