Warcross by Marie Lu

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5stars

Every locked door has a key.
Every problem has a solution.

Title: Warcross
Author: Marie Lu
Series: Warcross #1
Number of pages: 368 (paperback edition)
Good things about this book: It’s intriguing and very well-written: you feel transported into the future.
Bad things about this book: Nothing.
Do I recommend it? Yes!
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

When I read this book was somewhat similar to Ready Player One, I knew I was already sold. It has similarities but it was its own creature with its own world and dynamics. One thing I loved a lot was that it took place in Tokyo; I love Japan and, even if I’ve been to Tokyo only twice, I always feel like going back to a familiar place. I’m all in for diverse characters and this book has them; characters from all around the world with different sexualities, all participating to the championship. It’s not difficult, right? It shouldn’t be.

Set in an unknown future, real world runs side by side with the virtual world; a world built by young genius Hideo Tanaka. Hideo Tanaka built glasses that can read your mind, helping you shape the virtual world making it almost impossible to discern it from the real world. When he introduced his invention, he put a game in it, Warcross, meant to help its users get used this new world. Little he knew that Warcross was going to become the number one game on Earth, having its own championship, black market gambling, and a lot more than that.

I found it all fascinating and scary. I, at the same time, can’t wait for that to become our future (just the nice part, obviously) but I’m also afraid it will be the beginning of the end, more than it feels right now. We all know that all that kind of power isn’t good in the hands of human beings. Humans are not the most worthy kind of beings. At all. What to do when things don’t go as they should be? What to do if users bet illegally on the game? Bounty hunters are called. Emika Chen is a bounty hunter and she is struggling, trying her best to pay her debts and her rent in New York. She has 16 dollars in her bank account and is willing to try whatever she can to live.

When you refuse to ask for help, it tells others that they also shouldn’t ask for help from you. That you look down on them for needing your help. That you like feeling superior to them.

One thing lead to another and she finds herself where she isn’t supposed to be, and she is being summoned to Tokyo, meeting her idol Hideo Tanaka, and being thrown into a job that is more than what it seemed at first. Emika is hired to infiltrate the game but she will find herself involved in much more than just a spy hunt. There were a lot of potential suspects. I’m one to suspect almost immediately; I like to point fingers and formulate my theories. I was 100% wrong about one thing, 100% right about another, and 0% expecting what happened in the end.

Death has a terrible habit of cutting through every careful line you’ve drawn between your present and your future.

Emika is a flawed character. She is not a damsel in distress, she doesn’t need to be rescued, she feels often insecure, she throws herself at things bigger than herself, she trusts her instincts, and she doesn’t stop until she solves the problem she is facing. She has been alone since her dad died and she is not used to be a teammate. She will have to learn to be one because she is going to be part of a Warcross team and at the same time she will have to be also a good liar because she has to do the job she was hired to do. I liked Emika a lot. She is a relatable character.

I loved everything that has to do with the virtual reality created by Hideo and I was, at times, quite smitten with him. He is a very intriguing character, hiding a hurtful past behind an ice wall, and having times with his walls down revealing how young he actually is. I was intrigued and, each time he introduced something new about the NeuroLink he created I drowned in each of his words. He charmed his way into my heart. I’m conflicted; he is young and has too much power in his hands. Is it safe? Doesn’t he need more than that? Something more real in the virtual world he created?

“Everything’s science fiction until someone makes it science fact.”

I now find myself waiting for the sequel with much more intensity. It’s harmful to be this impatient. It’s not that I don’t like to wait but when I’m anxious for the release of a book, spoilers happen. When I saw that Warcross was released I was interested; I didn’t buy it right away but waited a few weeks, then I didn’t read it when I got it. This way, I wasn’t extremely involved in the release process so I wasn’t subjected to the spoilers. Now my ears are up, paying maximum attention to news and that will lead to spoilers. I’m 150% sure of it. Let’s have a spoiler free waiting, ok? One can only hope!

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[ARC] Artemis by Andy Weir

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5stars

Attack of the Moon Woman Who Made Bad Life Decisions.

Title: Artemis
Author: Andy Weir
Expected publication: November 14th 2017
Number of pages: 384 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Artemis is on the Moon!!!!
Bad things about this book: Nothing, it has everything.
Do I recommend it? Yes, if you loved The Martian you will love Artemis.
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for a review – This review will contain many quotes but zero spoilers.

Artemis was so much fun to read and plenty interesting. I love a good sci-fi book and if the mc is funny but not in an overwhelming kind of way, then I’m hooked from the start. Guess what? I was hooked from the very first page! I fought to get an ARC because I loved The Martian; I couldn’t miss another book like that one, right? I was such a fool to let two whole months pass from receiving the ARC to finally reading it. Such a fool, shame on me!

“Oh, poor billionaire,” I said. “Maybe you should have some moors installed so you can pine on them.”

Now that I have read it, I can very much say that I loved it; loved the concept, the characters, the heist, the twists, and how easy was to read it without being a scientist. I recommend it more to science enthusiasts, though, because it has many terms that may confuse or bore most of the people I know so, if you’re not in awe of everything scientific, then maybe this book is not for you.

I had this bad habit of checking my bank account every day, as if compulsively looking at it would make it grow. But the banking software wasn’t interested in my dreams.

Jazz is a wonderful main character. She is fun, she is a rebel, and she is extremely relatable. She lives in the poorest part of Artemis. Did I mention that Artemis is the only city on the Moon? On the freaking Moon!! Can you believe how cool is it to live on the Moon with only 1/6th of the Earth’s gravity? I loved everything about Artemis; it seemed like magic but at the same time it all seemed so possible it was incredibly enchanting. I was dreaming with my eyes wide open.

“I’m sorry, but this isn’t my thing,” I said. “You’ll have to find someone else.”
“I’ll give you a million slugs.”
“Deal.”

Let’s go back to Jazz: she is a Saudi-Arabian 25-year-old girl, she works as a porter, and she is a criminal. Not a dangerous one, though. She smuggles things from Earth to sell to a higher price to Artemisians. Let’s say you miss smoking and it’s forbidden to smoke in Artemis because it’s flammable, then what do you do? You call Jazz, place your order, she emails her friend on Earth and, tadah, you have your very expensive cigarettes and you can smoke on the Moon, hopefully without setting the whole city on fire killing everyone inside.

The city shined in the sunlight like a bunch of metallic boobs. What? I’m not a poet. They look like boobs.

Jazz needs money and she’s been presented with the perfect opportunity to gain enough money to live like a queen possibly for the rest of her life. She can’t turn it down even if it’s dangerous and she risks being deported to Earth where she hasn’t been since she was a little girl. She is not an Earthling anymore; she is a 100% Artemisian.

How dare you call me lazy! I’d come up with a scathing retort but, meh, I’m just not motivated.

The story doesn’t lack twists and many of them involve side characters. I knew things weren’t going to be as they seemed at first, but some twists got me totally unprepared. I love a story that doesn’t put drama just for the sake of it and the twists are well managed so that the story doesn’t drag pointless for too long. The story flows perfectly with all its obstacles. Jazz, her inner monologues, and her interactions with the side characters make this story captivating. Once you start reading, you won’t want to stop until the end.

“You are unmarried and have sex with many men.”
“Yes, I’m quite the harlot.” Her son, Isvan, had banged more dudes than I ever had. I resisted the urge to tell her.

I can’t and won’t say much about anything else. I found myself rooting for Jazz from the start and I wanted to see how her crazy self was going to manage all the crazy things she wanted to do to have a better future and to redeem herself from all the bad decisions she’s made in the past. This is a charming story and it’s told perfectly. I loved it and if you loved The Martian as much as I did, then pick this book as soon as it’s released and read it.

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[ARC] Nyxia by Scott Reintgen

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4stars

“Are you a bad person? Of course not. Does that mean you’ll always do the right thing? Of course not. No one’s perfect.”

Title: Nyxia
Author: Scott Reintgen
Series: The Nyxia Triad #1
Number of pages: 384 (kindle edition)
Good things about this book: Nyxia is a pretty amazing element.
Bad things about this book: Forced romance plotline, unnecessary.
Do I recommend it? Yes.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

*ARC from Netgalley*

Besides one forced and gratuitous flaw, I enjoyed this more than anticipated. I still like Longwei, a side character that spoke almost never, more than I liked Emmett, the main character. We’ll see in the next book if I change my mind.

There’s always this problem with YA sci-fi in which the author thinks it’s a must to insert a romance plotline even if it’s stretched and we can very much live on without it. I was afraid it was going to happen here and it happened unfortunately but not like I expected; it was worse. I’m not going to say more about it but luckily it didn’t spoil the book altogether. I just hope it’s not going to happen again. I’m not a teenager, I haven’t been one for over a decade, but I know for sure that if there is not romance in a YA sci-fi, it’s not a big deal if the book delivers what it promises. This was doing just that and then, it fell into the void of things unnecessary.

Letting that slip because I’m a nice and patient person, I found myself liking a lot of the elements of this book and loving so many more. The twists, the mysterious nyxia, the characters, and space. I love space so much! The whole book is about the journey of these teenagers from Earth to a faraway planet called Eden where they are going to mine nyxia while earning a ton of money.

“But they don’t tell you the pain comes with you. They don’t tell you that hurt travels at light-speed too.”

These teenagers weren’t chosen randomly; there are 10 of them, all poor and broken. They are the perfect candidates for this mission because they are desperate and willing to sacrifice their time and strength to give a better tomorrow to their beloved ones at home. They are forced to compete against each other to gain passage to Eden, the planet with Nyxia mines, an element that is going to change life as they know it.

These boys and girls are all from different parts of the world so they don’t speak the same language. After all the mission is run by Babel Corporation so it seemed right. They all have a mask that translates everything they say; they speak and the voice translated reaches the ears of all the others wearing identical masks. It’s an incredible idea! I loved it!

I loved it almost as much as I loved nyxia. This element was given to each of them in the form of a ring and, through mind communication, they could transform it into what they wanted. The limit, you guessed right, is your imagination. Nyxia consumes your energy because in a way it is a part of you and you have to be careful because, being an element that has a mind of its own, it can take over and destroy you from inside out.

“Well, the first guy on the ground isn’t always the one who loses the fight, Doc.”

I loved their challenges, their friendship, also the twists, and I loved how the characters were all so different. As I said, I loved Longwei: he speaks little to nothing, he doesn’t socialize, he is smart and strong, but he sometimes lets his mask slip and shows a little vulnerability, he looks his age. He’s been chosen so he has to have a hard past and maybe also a hard present, and I can’t wait to see what’s beneath the walls he’s built.

This book isn’t without flaws but it’s a nice one. This is a promising beginning to a series that I know will deliver what I’m expecting. It has what it takes to be great.

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Scythe by Neal Shusterman

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5stars

We are not the same being we once were.
So then, if we are no longer human, what are we?

Title: Scythe
Author: Neal Shusterman
Good things about this book: It is well written and it has a very original (and scary) plot.
Bad things about this book: When I bought it I thought it was a stand alone but it turns out it isn’t and I have to wait a lot for the sequel.
Do I recommend it? Yes yes yes!
Rate: 5/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

This scared the hell out of me. Second book by Shusterman and second win for me, that’s for sure. He writes and takes you to an adventure, gets you hooked up into the story with amazing descriptions of a world, so vivid, you believe it exists yet you don’t want to live in it. It was scary because of its realness. This was such a compelling story and it had this depth in it that made me realize that no matter what will happen, our future won’t be nice. How is it that we are forever destined to ruin every good thing the world offers us?

People prophesized doom at the hands of a soulless machine. But apparently the machine had a purer soul than any human.

The Earth in this book has defeated diseases and death, and its society is run by the Thunderhead, an AI pure and just who helps everyone. Long story short, the world is great. But there’s only one problem: if people don’t die, there won’t be enough space for all of them to live, eat, to work. People in it “survives”: they take jobs that aren’t really necessary, go to school when they don’t really need it, have lots of children they don’t want to take care of. They are not truly living because when you are not afraid of mortality, poverty and hunger, then what really is your purpose?

Immortality has turned us all into cartoons.

That’s how the Scythedom was born. Scythes have the power to glean people, killing them definitely, taking them off a world where they are immortal and they can reset their age whenever they like. Scythes are human beings that are given a license to kill (and to grant 1 year immunity if they want to) without consequences, without laws forbidding it, with the world scared of them but at the same time charmed by them. Charmed by these people in colorful robes who can randomly select you to remove you from the world, adding your death to their annual quota of people that need to be killed in order to maintain balance in population.

Power comes infected with the only disease left to us: the virus called human nature.

Scythes’ actions are not ruled by the Thunderhead, who is always just and never makes mistakes, so they are flawed: they’re humans after all. There is corruption, favoritism, unnecessary cruelty, and people are unaware of all that. They just keep on living until one of those Scythes decides you can no longer keep doing that. Maybe the decision was truly random or maybe just maybe that scythe didn’t like you because you were too rich, too ugly or too fat. Are they punished for being biased and unjust? Not really.

To put oneself above all other laws is a fundamental recipe for disaster.

It was obvious that in a society with no more death or diseases and only one self governed institution that proclaims itself above all laws there’d be corruption. It makes me sick thinking how inevitable it was because, of course, they are humans and humans with power are dangerous. Give a group of people too much power over humanity and you’ll see how everything the Thunderhead worked so hard for crumbles, one little piece at a time.

This book is about two scythe apprentices, Citra and Rowan, and the different paths they take and are forced to take in the year of training before the last test that will proclaim them fit or unfit for the role. Following their mentor around, the lovely Honorable Scythe Faraday, will show them what lies behind the scenes of gleaning. Will they like what they see? Can they see themselves wearing the scythe robe and killing people? Will they ever lose their humanity and start enjoying it?

There’s so much to say about this book but none of the things I can say about it will make it justice. I wrote vaguely about what is the reality of the book and what is it about but, trust me, it is so much more than that. This book has lots of layers and without reading it you wouldn’t unravel it the right way, in the right order. I will end up spoiling the journey and this is a journey I took and recommend everyone to take.

My greatest wish for humanity is not for peace or comfort or joy. It is that we all still die a little inside every time we witness the death of another. For only the pain of empathy will keep us human.

Experience their journey first hand. Fall in love with characters, and hate other characters. Cheer for them. Have your heart broken and wish you had nanites inside of you like them that’ll make you heal and calm yourself in no time. Be mad at the injustice. Be frustrated at how ugly humans can really be when they think only about themselves and their wellbeing. Be moved. Learn. Be ready for all of this can seem improbable but maybe it is not after all.

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More Than This by Patrick Ness ☆

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5starsplus

“I wanted so badly for there to be more. I ached for there to be more than my crappy little life.” He shakes his head. “And there was more. I just couldn’t see it.”

Title: More Than This
Author: Patrick Ness
Good things about this book: I loved everything!
Bad things about this book: Not sure it was the right choice for this book but I would have loved an epilogue.
Do I recommend it? Yes, read it.
Rate: 5+++/5
☆: It made my “favourite books” list

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

There’s this peculiarity in Patrick Ness’ books that I genuinely love and cherish and no matter what I’m experiencing, they resonate with me, with my soul, and I end up thinking about them almost every single day, carrying them deep within my heart. I just love them so much it hurts.

It’s now been two days since I finished the book and more than often I have found myself staring into nothing, thinking about the truth about what I read, the deepness of what’s been told, the fear I got realizing that that future might not be so unlikely. It scared the hell out of me.

Seth drowns, we read his inner monologue while drowning, how he feels, what is happening to his body. We know he drowns but then he wakes up in a deserted city, wearing nothing but bandages, he is disoriented; yet he is alive. How? Why?

“He’s died, and woken up in his own, personal hell.”

I had many theories about where Seth was. Theories I was proud of thinking, theories worth of being turned into TV shows or even movies. Sadly I wasn’t right but the different outcome surprised me for the better. I would have never thought of that and that was kind of perfect. I love being surprised. I also love predicable outcomes so it’s pretty easy to please me.

I loved Seth and I liked Regine and Tomasz a lot. Main character and sidekicks on point, together in this weird environment they are trying to figure out and survive into. The questions Seth asked himself were questions I was asking, the doubts he was having were the same I was having; I was one with the book, a part of it. There was no end to the guessing, to what the hell was that place and what were they supposed to do. It was fun how at the beginning Seth just thought he was in hell and that was it, he was just going to go with it and be okay with it. Then everything happens and nothing is as before.

“We take random events and we put them together in a pattern so we can comfort ourselves with a story, no matter how much of it obviously isn’t true.”

This was my fourth book by Patrick Ness and I can say without doubt that, for me, he is a genius. His stories are contemporary mixed with fantasy or sci-fi. He is an excellent writer and the way he incorporates everyday issues with fantasy elements it’s flawless. The themes he writes about are hard yet he presents them in a way it’s easy for everyone to understand, to relate to the characters; I know I want to fight more, I want to let my voice be heard, I want to change the world even if I do it starting from my little environments.

It doesn’t matter how little you can do, if you fight for what you believe, if you want to see change, if you want the world to be a great place to live for everyone, then don’t give up before starting because “what difference my voice can make?”.

“There’s always beauty,” Seth murmurs. “If you know where to look.”

Reading books by Patrick Ness makes me want to be a better person for me and for whoever doesn’t have it easy in life. Because everyone deserves to be free to be who they are without being afraid to be harmed, physically or emotionally, because of it. Because you shouldn’t be afraid to seek help if you have mental illness and you feel the world slipping through your fingers. Because you shouldn’t feel the obligation to be strong by yourself and that it’s okay to be weak and ask for a hand. Because we shouldn’t allow anyone to deny us the happiness we know we deserve. There is more than struggle out there; there is more than fear; there is more than what we think it’s unchangeable.

There is more than this and we need to fight to find it.

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Gemina by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (With journal illustrations by Marie Lu) ☆

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5starsplus

As with previous Illuminae transcripts, please forgive the colorful language. Our vidtech is no Shakespeare.

Title: Gemina
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (With journal illustrations by Marie Lu)
Good things about this book: Great characters, great story.
Bad things about this book: We will have to wait for the sequel to know more about everything and everyone.
Do I recommend it? Yes, it’s amazing.
Rate: 5+++/5 (☆: It made my “favourite books” list)

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

Chuff Chuff, all aboard, hurry up, the train is leaving soon. First stop: the place where your feelings get fed then crushed then cuddled up. Second stop: the land of plot twists in which nobody is safe. Third stop: the island of charming and badass youth. Fourth and last stop: villain town with its cruel inhabitants!

What the hell was this book? What the actual rollercoaster of emotions was this thing? 659 pages of anguish, trepidation, cold sweat and palpitations. I don’t know how I survived all of that. I read it slowly having little time and maybe that was for the best because I could savor it little by little until those last pages that gave me so many attacks I wonder how I’m not giggling while crying in a corner.

I did giggle, I also did almost cry; trust me, everything that could happen inside of me, feelings wise, happened. I’m still recovering, trying to make sense of a lot of things that happened, remembering passages, trying to figure out how I didn’t see some of the things coming. How the hell was I supposed to be ready for everything to happen at once? There were some paralleled chapters that still have me confused, I won’t deny that. It’s a pity I can’t comment on anything because this adventure has to be experience first hand, no previews, no warnings. Ok, I did warn you about the emotions but come on, you’ve read Illuminae, so you’ve got to start this book expecting the feelings waves.

Apparently she’s got revenge on her mind, and it’s really annoying when people try to talk at you while you’re feeling murderish.

Gemina starts just after the ending of Illuminae but on board of a totally different ship, a jump station with a giant wormhole in the middle, and a new set of characters. This station is the destination of Kady and company after the disastrous events of Illuminae. Kady’s father is on the Heimdall station ignoring all that have happened to his family on the other side of the universe. The jump station is invaded by the same people who did all those horrible things to Kerenza in Illuminae. Those pieces of poop! Poopy people! It will be our heroes’ job to get them out of there without getting killed in the process. Won’t be an easy task and it will have your heart beating like crazy.

I guess she figures she can sleep when she’s dead.

Hanna Donnelly, our marvelous heroine is a kickass girl with a great sense of fashion and a super cute boyfriend. She can kick your butt, my butt and the butts of half of Rome in an afternoon if you give her the time. She had my heart from the first pages; fierce, brave, apparently very tall, model like (but of course, ladies and gentlemen, of course), she knows all the martial arts and she is very good at all of them. She brings courage to the whole operation. Go Hanna!

He simply stops in place and shoots her a smile, showing off those dimples the ladies love. He smiles at her like he’s not tired at all, like he’s not wearing another man’s blood under his suit, like all he wanted in life was to catch a glimpse of her.

Nik Malikov, son of crime leaders, drug dealer extraordinaire and charm master, he has a crush on our Hanna and he finds himself trapped in all that’s happening on the station. Nik is one charming boy, all tattoos and dimples, flirtatious messages and dream smiles. Yeah, world, I indeed have crushed on the boy, couldn’t help myself, it happened. He brings humor to the whole operation. Go Nik!

Dark hair and darker eyes. Dimples. The kind of abs you get from around five hundred sit-ups a day. There’s not much else to do in prison, after all.

Ella Malikov, Nik’s cousin and head of the gang. She is the Mr. Robot of the Heimdall station, the pirate of all pirates. She hacks like she was born doing it, like she hacked her way out of her mom’s womb. She’s that good. There’s more to her than that, though. She is also hilarious and she embarrasses her cousin bringing comedy gold moments to the chat conversations. She brings gray matter to the whole operation. Go Ella!

We had to sacrifice several kittens to ancient bloodgods in order to crack the encryption on this thing.

The story wouldn’t be complete without our not forgotten heroes from Illuminae and their appearance is like a breathe of fresh air. I don’t think it’s a spoiler they play a part on this book since the stories are interconnected so no spoilers alerts! AIDAN!! Do you remember AIDAN? Do you? My little murderous AI, all hurt and malfunctioning, makes a great entrance in Gemina and I wanted to throw him a welcome back party. He is always a ray of sunshine (darkness?), bringer of the best comebacks in conversations. He just can’t help but being logical, of course, since he was built that way, but his development and his inner monologues are so deep and full of reflections on how random we humans are that they always amaze me. Go Hypatia! Go Kady! Go AIDAN!

AIDAN: So good luck, Hanna Donnelly.
AIDAN: The universe itself depends on you.
AIDAN: …no pressure.

Explaining how great a book is without really saying much about the book is hard and I don’t know if I conveyed all I wanted you to know about its greatness in just a few apparently random sentences. Reading the paragraphs above I see everything that happened in the book because I have read it and everything reminds me of something important, something fun or just something ordinary about the story. I don’t think this review has the power to convince you to read Gemina because if you are here you have already read Illuminae and the book alone is enough to convince anybody to at least give it a try. Unless you hated it, in which case I don’t judge you, and I proceed to activate the countdown in my head for the third book in The Illuminae Files series! But the real question is: will it be green? Yellow? I say gold!

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The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin

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“Light is the left hand of darkness
and darkness the right hand of light.”

Title: The Left Hand of Darkness
Author: Ursula K. Le Guin
Why you should read this book: Because it’s set in space and it’s about aliens with very peculiar characteristics!
Do I recommend it? Yes, it can be a little complex but overall it’s a very nice and interesting book.
Rate: 4/5

Read the summary and add this book on Goodreads: here

I wanted to give this book 5 stars only because of Estraven but I can’t. The book is beautiful, well written and extremely fascinating BUT the stereotypes about men and women from our main character bothered me a little too much. So, it’s 5+ stars for Estraven, 4 real stars for the whole book! Maybe 4- when Genly starts complaining about Estraven being too feminine and that scares the hell out of him. Why?

I have to admit that the names and different language was a little difficult to read and pronounce in my head but after a bit I got used to it and enjoyed trying to figure out how where they pronounce. I still think I have mispronounced EVERYTHING!!

I have always loved a sci-fi book with a story, occasionally adventurous, in a faraway planet and aliens. Who doesn’t? This didn’t disappoint in all of what I was expecting and I got a lot more than I was bargaining for. It doesn’t have forbidden love, and it doesn’t have a traditional love story. There is love and there are feelings. No spoilers here, it’s in the synopsis.

“Light, dark. Fear, courage. Cold, warmth. Female, male. It is yourself, Therem. Both and one. A shadow on snow.”

We have an Envoy of a faraway planet on a planet inhabited by genderless humanoids aliens. These aliens go in kemmer once a month (kemmer is like being “in heat”) and randomly they become male or female and mate with one another resulting often in a pregnancy. This fact can be overwhelming but for our dear Genly it was almost the worst thing that could ever existed in the universe. He is really close-minded and I was annoyed by his remarks most of the times. Other times he was ok.

“It is strange. I am the only man in all Gethen that has trusted you entirely, and I am the only man in Gethen that you have refused to trust.”

The best thing about this book came in the shape of a tiny dark-skinned genderless alien with a soft and round body called Therem Harth rem ir Estraven. Yep, that’s his whole glorious name. His parts of the story were my favorite; parts in which we could read his journal. He is a very methodical person and has a clear opinion of certain facts. I can only describe him as sweet and peculiar. I was very angry at Genly every time he was rude to him. Estraven is nothing but a doll and you better realize is soon or I’ll slap you real hard! Estraven makes me emotional.

“The best food I’ve eaten on Gethen has always been in your company, Estraven.”

I have read only the Earthsea books by Ursula K. Le Guin and I loved them. I fell in love with the story, the magic, the dragons (of course) and in particular I fell in love with Ged. Ged is the main character of the first book and a recurrent character in the others. I love him! There is something in these characters she writes that get to your soul. They are not perfect. These characters are not heroes like the ones you are used to read about. They have a quiet personality and they are so much more than what they seem from the outside. It’s hard to understand but while reading about Estraven I had the same feelings I had while reading about Ged. I thought: “This is one hell of a character I’m going to treasure!”. Yeah, he went right inside my “favorite characters” treasure chest and he will stay there forever.

I haven’t really explained the book because it’s not easy. Months and months pass, sometimes the story felt rushed. A lot of things happen and some news maybe you wanted to know more about where explained in one or two lines. This is a must read if you love sci-fi. It’s surely a must read if you love Mrs. Le Guin. Beware that there may be lots of stereotypes because it’s an old book written by a mind of that time. They may bother you but I think these issues don’t ruin the story in its wholesome. I’ll give it a try!

“What does a man die of but his death?”

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