I started this after a year, because I was worried it might not be my thing. I shouldn't have worried, I couldn't put it down! The story follows a new ambassador to a big empire, where she tries to find out what happened to her predecessor. She's clearly the center of the story, in contrast to many other scifi books with multiple povs and a much wider scope (which doesn't mean that the world building is bad! I'm just a character driven reader).
A Memory of Empire has top notch political intrigue, neural implants, fantastic world building and a world consuming empire at the center of it all. This was a hard one to put down. It feels both smart and easily digestible. While it doesn‘t reach the stratospheric heights of The Light Brigade it is a fantastic book all the same and I‘ll soon be getting my hands on the next one by Arkady Martine
Mahit is a young diplomat sent to the capital of a vast and omnivorous empire, tasked with protecting the independence of her remote home system. Caught up in palace intrigue and elaborate plots, Mahit must avoid her predecessor's fate while balancing her love for the seductive allure of imperial culture with her duty to her home. Loved the world-building and looking forward to the next book!
As a Space Opera that combines palace/political intrigue with a stranger in a strange land tale, this book is extremely my jam. Martine trained as a historian and it shows, as the empire of the title echoes both Byzantium (her area) & the pre-Colombian Aztec empires. The pacing drags at times but there are plenty of big ideas and fascinating details* to carry the reader through. Looking forward to the sequel!
Intricate plotting, rich world building, & fascinating, complicated queer characters—this sci-fi #audiobook read by Amy Landon kept me awake late into the night. It‘s almost too obvious to compare it to Ann Leckie‘s Imperial Radch trilogy, since a blurb from Leckie graces the cover of some editions, but if you like stories of an amazing, queer, lone representative from elsewhere embroiled in political intrigue, both authors will appeal. #LGBTQ
“Three Seagrass said, perfectly metrical, ‘The honour of meeting you in person is like stumbling on a fresh spring in the mountains,‘ which had to be an allusion, if not an outright quotation.”
I‘m getting Tale of Genji flashbacks in the way poetry plays a central role in the alien culture depicted in this science fiction novel.
Finally finished this book for #bbbbc and answered @InLibrisVeritas questions over on her posts.
Loved this book so much! Took me forever, but it was so worth it. The world building, the echoes of Aztec culture, the ideas of personality and memory and how they can be saved and integrated for future generations. So many thought provoking ideas here that I‘m still working through. I‘ll definitely read the second book.
Here are the first set of discussion questions!! Please feel free to answer here or in your own posts, make you use the group tag so we can stop by!
If you have any questions you would like answered by the group as a whole feel free to post those a well! More questions will be posted tomorrow. If you did not read the book or do not wish to join the dicussuon, let me know and I will make sure not to tag you tomorrow and Wed.
Hey guys! Just wanted to do a quick update just in case the dicussion came a bit late! #BBBBC #scififantasybookclub
My brother is doing alright and has had a mild case so far. He is getting tested again soon as it seems he is on the other side.
#wintergames2020 Week 4 Total: 230 + 4,090 word game = 4,320 points #teamreadnosedreindeer
Thank goodness for this week‘s game which was a ton of fun!
Very little reading time. Finished 3 stories in the Romancing Wisconsin series - fast, fun reads. Continued making progress on buddy reads.
Watched 2 seasons of Home for Christmas - highly recommend!
Watched 4 movies: Godmothered is really good, Arthur Christmas is always fun, other 2 were meh 😕
There are so many books I need/want to finish this year.
#BookSpin - Silent Night
#BBBBC - tagged book
#Booked2020 - Iron Hunt (bottom of my TBR which is why I haven‘t read it yet 😂)
#LMPBC - Entwined
And one more Christmas read with Jane Austen
If I finish 4 of those specific books I can potentially get 3 bingos! So we‘ll see. I‘m also hoping to get to When No One is Watching but I might have to push it to January.
What a fabulous adventure! ❤️ This story swept me through a sci-fi version of the Aztec Empire with them as the colonialists. Told from the point of view of an ambassador from a small space station community, I was immersed in this new world and a political uprising. Absolutely engrossing!
While simple in structure, “A Memory Called Empire” is narratively complex and loads of fun to read. I really enjoyed many of the plot devices (e.g. imagos). I also loved digging into Martine‘s beliefs about personal identity which are embedded throughout the story. Suffice it to say that I am ready for the second book in the series (due out in March).
The Aztec Empire in space! I love political sci-fi and this book was full of crafty manoeuvrings, double-crossing, and unreliable allies. It‘s about colonisation, cultural domination, and dividing the world into ‘citizens‘ and ‘barbarians‘. It‘s also a damn good story!
Reading Envy Podcast Episode 204: BookTube Season with Scott
While a lot of readers have struggled during the pandemic, Scott had a reading breakthrough this past year. We talk about BookTube, places for readalongs, and books we've read and liked recently.
#30daysofgratitude Day 2 🙏 @jb72 Three things I like about myself... I like my hair - it‘s curly and a bit mad and I love it. I stick to my guns when I know I‘m in the right. And I‘m that person who you want on your pub quiz team! Today I‘m grateful that COVID numbers here are very low... the borders are closed but there are worse places to be stuck than Thailand (the pic is of Phuket at sunset)
Who is ready for the last book pick of 2020?!
Offical start date is todat and will go until Dec 31st! The discussion will be posted during that last week! As always feel free to let me know if you wish to join in club, or if you don't plan to read this one (so I don't bug you w/tag when I post updates or the dicussion).
This book is the #BBBBC read for Nov/Dec. For those of you who are participating in this book club I have an extra copy I am willing to mail. Please let me know if you want it. If more than one person wants, I'll draw names.
The pick for Nov/Dec is A Memory Called Empire! The offical start date us Nov. 1st and the discussion will be posted Dec 29-31.
Feel free to post before or after those dates, and feel free to tag #BBBBC and me in your updates!
If you would like to be added to the notification list let me know!
I really liked this book. It's a bit cerebral and starts out slowly, but by the end I was completely invested. It's a sci-fi political thriller that thoughtfully explores the ways in which cultures interact. The dedication - “to anyone who has ever fallen in love with a culture that was devouring their own“ - is apt. I highly recommend this book and understand why it's gotten so much acclaim.
A MEMORY CALLED EMPIRE is full of intricate politics, high stakes gambits, and literary references to texts that don‘t exist in our world. For most of its run, I loved it—but as the end approached, I began to feel it was a 460-page book that really WANTED to be a 360-page book. That bumped it down from Beloved Book to Book I Really Liked. Which, hey, I‘ll take.
My #BookSpin pick this month is A Memory Called Empire, which just won a Hugo award this weekend!
If I'm honest I'm feeling a little bit defensive about looking like a bandwagon-jumper when I've actually been meaning to read this book for ages. Better late than never, anyway.
Onward over breakfast! This is shaping up to be one of my favourite 2020 Hugo nominees (possibly tied with THE CITY IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT). I‘d love to finish it today, but I didn‘t get much with-eyeballs reading time yesterday so I might have too much left to pull it off. We‘ll see.
I finished another Hugo Best Novel nominee for the #JubilantJuly readathon! This space opera has terrific characters and some very interesting concepts, though I found the pacing very uneven. The main character is rather like Dax of Star Trek DS9.
This was the Sword and Laser pick for June. The world-building was well done, and the characters were interesting. The political intrigue and murder mystery drive the plot in order to explore ideas of memory, identity, and trust. I enjoyed it, although at times it felt a bit slow. This is the first in a series, so I hope the rest of the books continue to explore these characters, world, and themes.
Finished this yesterday, but took a beat to process. I wanted to LOVE this ... but I don‘t think I did? I loved aspects of it. Like the feeling of utter disorientation you as the reader share with Mahit. And the banter. And the glimpses of the world-building we did get. It could have been so epic, but, for me, it felt a little rushed and unfinished/under-developed. That said, still a pick.
Another Hugo nominee, and a good one. It's a space-opera story featuring an ambassador to the capital of an interstellar empire. There is intrigue and subterfuge, curious technology, cutthroat politics, and plain old peril. Plenty attention paid to the world's literary culture, which is nicely imagined. Looking forward to the next.
An incredible diplomatic space opera! Mahit is an ambassador from a space station sent to the heart of the Teixcalaanli Empire. She loves Teixcalaanli poetry and culture, but she knows they are colonizers intent on annexing her home. When she arrives, she discovers her predecessor has suspiciously died. Intricate world-building with a focus on poetry, language, conceptions of selfhood, and neurological technology. Plus slow burn lesbian romance!
#24B4Monday was a real success! My goal was to read more of my Hugo Voter Packet and this is what I finished, over 12 hours and 5 minutes of reading:
- The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix Harrow
- Omphalos and Anxiety is the Dizziness of Freedom by Ted Chiang
- La Guardia by Nnedi Okorafor
I also started A Memory Called Empire.
Thanks to the readathon organizers, @Andrew65, @jb72 and @SumisBooks!
Don't want to feel compelled to read the entire series. Bailing at more than halfway through.
Yet another political intrigue in a high culture, imperialistic space empire.
Empire values poetry but there isn't a lot given (suspect the author isn't a poet). We are repeatedly told the protagonist is very clever but her actions show otherwise. The mystery lacks suspense. The world building lacks depth.