The Incomparable

251: Tea, Sandwiches, and Mushrooms


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  surt192xlbp in comfortable number 251 [TS]

  jun 2015 [TS]

  welcome back everybody to be [TS]

  uncomfortable i'm your host Jason Steele [TS]

  we're reconvening our group of people [TS]

  who read all of the nebula nominated [TS]

  novels the novel's nominated by the [TS]

  science-fiction writers association for [TS]

  best novel of the year last year there [TS]

  were eight this year there are only six [TS]

  so little less reading we're going to do [TS]

  sort of i would say we're going to try [TS]

  to keep the spoilers not too heavy so [TS]

  you should be able to listen to us talk [TS]

  about these novels and decide if you [TS]

  want to read them if you haven't already [TS]

  so let me tell you who are panel is just [TS]

  as it was last year Scott McNulty of [TS]

  course I wouldn't do a book club without [TS]

  him [TS]

  hi Scott hello welcome back it's good to [TS]

  be back I feel like I haven't been on [TS]

  the uncomfortable and forever [TS]

  I know you too busy with your own stuff [TS]

  you got stuff you're writing a book you [TS]

  doing your own podcast or busy busy busy [TS]

  man but I missed you I missed you too [TS]

  I'm glad we're here together yes also [TS]

  joining us a Fred cash longtime listener [TS]

  returning guest you can hear him at the [TS]

  three horsemen podcast which is sort of [TS]

  spun out of SF signal hi Fred I there [TS]

  and what to be decidedly is your I've [TS]

  been listening since like episode 8 [TS]

  something like that episode a single [TS]

  digits I think you've been around seems [TS]

  like just yesterday also out there Paul [TS]

  lemur you may know him from the skippy [TS]

  and fancy podcast which is how the [TS]

  co-host of and uh SF signal as well [TS]

  hi Paul hello Jason hello in copper [TS]

  listeners I'm glad to be back welcome [TS]

  back and Sean Duke from skippy and [TS]

  vanity and the totally pretentious [TS]

  podcast is also out there hi Sean hello [TS]

  I will be your resident curmudgeon [TS]

  tonight well you can you have to her [TS]

  much [TS]

  McNulty for that title but i will come [TS]

  much the heck Adam okay good [TS]

  I don't know about that these young [TS]

  starts we're going to occur much your [TS]

  budget together [TS]

  okay so we got we've got six novel [TS]

  nominations here actually by the time [TS]

  that this podcast is released i believe [TS]

  there will be a winner [TS]

  yes yeah i'm only stupefied by the [TS]

  inclusion two of these books I have no [TS]

  idea why they were included the rest [TS]

  pretty good one of these books is the [TS]

  sequel to a book that was on this list [TS]

  last year [TS]

  why don't we start there that would be [TS]

  ancillary sword by and lucky [TS]

  sequel to ancillary justice you may have [TS]

  heard of it we've talked about it on [TS]

  like eight different episodes be [TS]

  uncomfortable it was nominated for an [TS]

  pretty much won every award last year [TS]

  this is the sequel and I was trying to [TS]

  refresh i read this a little while ago I [TS]

  was trying to refresh my memory about [TS]

  about what this book is because what I [TS]

  remember about is it's not what i [TS]

  expected the sequel ancillary justice [TS]

  got this kind of broad canvas and and [TS]

  you get this character and their she's [TS]

  flashing back to previous parts of life [TS]

  as a an AI on a starship and now she's [TS]

  on the run in theirs and there's a disk [TS]

  in a cold planet that they're on and [TS]

  then the end up getting on a ship and [TS]

  going and attacking the Emperor of the [TS]

  of this the Star Empire and this and [TS]

  then I then I read a synopsis I was like [TS]

  oh yeah this is the one where they get [TS]

  stranded on a space station and the in [TS]

  the swimming pool leaks that's cold [TS]

  there's also a tea plantation yeah so [TS]

  we're trying important [TS]

  there's a lot of tea there's a lot of [TS]

  tea drinking yes so god I I don't want [TS]

  to I my point is I was just shocked at [TS]

  what this book was because it wasn't [TS]

  what I was not expecting i was expecting [TS]

  more scope my god is that the last [TS]

  chapter of ancillary justice is sort of [TS]

  like and then we have a starship and I [TS]

  was the captain did the détente' I [TS]

  really kind of expected them to go in [TS]

  that direction and I suppose it is is [TS]

  there sort of sort of like a star trek [TS]

  episode in some ways I liked it actually [TS]

  a lot but it was it was it was quite a [TS]

  change of pace from ancillary justice is [TS]

  what i'm saying i didn't like it as much [TS]

  as ancillary justice but I did think it [TS]

  was good i think she took a bold [TS]

  decision and not just doing the same [TS]

  thing again and in fact I find parallels [TS]

  with this and one that we will be [TS]

  talking about later the comet Empire [TS]

  novel you know she she didn't do what we [TS]

  expected she examines in in-depth one [TS]

  planet run by this organization and the [TS]

  the good and the bad of what happens so [TS]

  I i get kept keep expel k once the shoe [TS]

  gonna drop when the shooting started [TS]

  never did never really started shooting [TS]

  but i did enjoy it because of the ATM [TS]

  death looks and altie so there's a lot [TS]

  of tea [TS]

  oh god what I did think it interesting [TS]

  is you're right Fred that this book its [TS]

  scale is much more subdued and so I [TS]

  thought it was interesting that you know [TS]

  she's being identified with what could [TS]

  be called the new space opera movement [TS]

  and yet with this book it's almost like [TS]

  she's doing new planetary romance that's [TS]

  the kind of totally total different take [TS]

  I think it does suffer a little bit from [TS]

  Middle book itís which is a problem [TS]

  that i think a lot of middle book suffer [TS]

  from and it's hard to kind of escape it [TS]

  also probably is suffering and some [TS]

  people's minds with the fact that the [TS]

  first book basically won every award [TS]

  under the Sun including awards probably [TS]

  nobody's ever heard of the field and so [TS]

  I think no matter what people were going [TS]

  to do when they came to this book that [TS]

  was going to be in the back of their [TS]

  minds and it was something that we [TS]

  talked to him like you that she was not [TS]

  so much concerned by but it was like [TS]

  obviously something that you had to [TS]

  think about i liked it though because i [TS]

  really love the in-depth sort of [TS]

  cultural examination elements [TS]

  particularly like T so the fact there's [TS]

  lots of tea in it made me happy i also [TS]

  appreciate that they're actually tea [TS]

  plantations and that was actually being [TS]

  discussed on some level but i do think [TS]

  it's not quite as strong as ancillary [TS]

  sword but still a good book [TS]

  it's got I was gonna make a star trek [TS]

  parallel just for you which is to say [TS]

  that I feel like I feel like I was [TS]

  expecting if I was expecting something [TS]

  after that last chapter i was expecting [TS]

  Star Trek The Next Generation and I got [TS]

  a little bit more deep space nine and a [TS]

  in a good way that this is this is you [TS]

  know the space station and it's a [TS]

  particular story and I and I think also [TS]

  interesting is there's this whole [TS]

  question of what happens when this crew [TS]

  and and the people on the station find [TS]

  out who break is which happens and it's [TS]

  and it's an issue right that the [TS]

  identity the identity of the first book [TS]

  it's sort of about cultural reaction to [TS]

  the identity of that character a little [TS]

  bit in the second book anyway how's my [TS]

  star trek parallel Scott I like it [TS]

  good job Jason thank you how are you and [TS]

  I like I like ancillary sort as well [TS]

  although i read it a you know like eight [TS]

  months ago so who the hell knows what [TS]

  happens in it but uh [TS]

  i I'm harmonics the pond dreams i do [TS]

  remember that i was reading the synopsis [TS]

  on wikipedia and it all came back to me [TS]

  in a good way [TS]

  I mean it's very different outlet and [TS]

  I'll just you know [TS]

  echo what everyone else said it's [TS]

  obviously very different than ancillary [TS]

  justice which is a good thing i think [TS]

  and it's interesting so she she painted [TS]

  this kind of broad picture of her [TS]

  universe and now she is playing in a [TS]

  particular part of it and giving us a [TS]

  little more detail about something so i [TS]

  thought it was nice i don't think it [TS]

  should win the nebula but I thought it [TS]

  was a good book [TS]

  stop the metaphor i have for this is [TS]

  this is this book is a tea ceremony [TS]

  after the big exploding of the first [TS]

  novel we have big giant space opera the [TS]

  first time in this novel we have a tea [TS]

  ceremony a quiet almost a pause it [TS]

  I mean most middle books try to go [TS]

  bigger batter larger this did the exact [TS]

  opposite and giving us this small story [TS]

  of a planet and a and its space station [TS]

  and there are hints that the aliens are [TS]

  going to do something but you don't see [TS]

  anything and it's all very quiet and [TS]

  subdued in character and character [TS]

  focused it is it's it's a tea ceremony [TS]

  as middle novel i'm not quite sure it [TS]

  completely succeeded it's certainly not [TS]

  as incandescent as in summary justice [TS]

  was for me but I liked it well enough [TS]

  because she was trying to do something [TS]

  completely different than most people [TS]

  try to do in the middle novels which I [TS]

  give it recorded for one of the things I [TS]

  like about ancillary justice is the the [TS]

  way she kind of takes the this trope the [TS]

  space opera troupe of Star Empire's [TS]

  right hey star in person who doesn't [TS]

  like a good start Empire and says well [TS]

  what do we know about empires on earth [TS]

  which is that the people they are built [TS]

  on the backs of people who are quite [TS]

  unfortunate and are treated incredibly [TS]

  badly in order to build an empire and [TS]

  that's something that does extend to [TS]

  this book and I the thing I think [TS]

  perhaps rather than the swimming pool [TS]

  leaking but the pond licking the thing I [TS]

  remember the most is the scenes on the [TS]

  planet where we see the people who are [TS]

  working on the tee and it's part of this [TS]

  being a minority group that's being the [TS]

  being oppressed [TS]

  and I think I I very clearly remember [TS]

  the kid liked the character like goes [TS]

  for a run or something like well you [TS]

  shouldn't be out anywhere and it's just [TS]

  making trouble of finding information [TS]

  about who these people are and what's [TS]

  going on that the plantation and I [TS]

  really enjoyed that continuation of this [TS]

  of this approach that she's got to the [TS]

  taking the ratch Empire and all of the [TS]

  like I all of the connections to it and [TS]

  how they're all they're all they're all [TS]

  complicit in this kind of awful system [TS]

  of empire that that she's in an inside [TS]

  of I think that was a that was in this [TS]

  book too and I really like that there [TS]

  are other good things like when the one [TS]

  in Chancellery from the other ship gets [TS]

  injured at the captain can understand [TS]

  the doctor can't understand why she's so [TS]

  concerned about trying to get this [TS]

  no spare part fixed night Saigon just [TS]

  let her die doesn't ever get used to be [TS]

  an ancillary yourself she's like a look [TS]

  maybe there's potential for another [TS]

  person here there's that and the the [TS]

  just the attitude of the the owners of [TS]

  the plantation towards a everybody they [TS]

  even the little situations where the [TS]

  they come up to the station to try to [TS]

  start fixing things and the people [TS]

  they're like no no you can't do that [TS]

  you're gonna you're ruined like for us [TS]

  yeah i guess the thing that that that [TS]

  struck me about about it out [TS]

  I like that it's a change of pace I [TS]

  think that too often authors are guilty [TS]

  of writing the same book again and again [TS]

  because it was successful the first time [TS]

  but at the same time the scope of the [TS]

  first book is very much like it's a star [TS]

  empire and their duplicate copies of the [TS]

  Emperor and the feuding with each other [TS]

  and there's mysterious aliens doing [TS]

  mysterious things and who knows what's [TS]

  going to happen next and in this book it [TS]

  is more like a more like an intermission [TS]

  and in all break in the action there's [TS]

  some things going on in the background [TS]

  but this is not that scope this is not [TS]

  about it in you know it is it is touched [TS]

  by it but this is not about we're gonna [TS]

  go to the capital and find all of the [TS]

  Emperor's and do whatever this is very [TS]

  much like we're gonna pause at this at [TS]

  this planet this is it it at one point I [TS]

  felt like it was almost like a Lois Lois [TS]

  McMaster Bujold uh you know proposing a [TS]

  novel where was [TS]

  like I know we've got this big story but [TS]

  where I'm just gonna tell you a story [TS]

  about this planet that is just that and [TS]

  and that's okay it just took me by [TS]

  surprise but but it was good it was not [TS]

  incandescent at like like ancillary [TS]

  justice i agree but but good and [TS]

  entertaining i thought let me take a [TS]

  break and tell you about our sponsor new [TS]

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  all right let's move on to a to trial by [TS]

  fire which is a sequel to by Charles [TS]

  game and it is equal to a book that was [TS]

  nominated for the hugo award last year [TS]

  so I read the first book in this series [TS]

  and this is the second book in the [TS]

  series tales tales and held her and look [TS]

  at the Terran Republic you may also [TS]

  think you know if it is johnny the [TS]

  adventures of Johnny square jaw [TS]

  I mean Kane Reardon now the that one was [TS]

  also nominated for the nebula yeah was [TS]

  it okay so we need to talk about it we [TS]

  arrived [TS]

  well its back trial by fire so might my [TS]

  memory of fire with fire the first one [TS]

  was i I think I said it felt like it was [TS]

  33 totally different novels in one where [TS]

  we sort of like adventure on a planet [TS]

  discovered something interesting and [TS]

  then it was go meet new aliens and [TS]

  finders place in the world and then the [TS]

  last third of was like a conspiracy [TS]

  thriller as the humans try to figure out [TS]

  what to do at this book is less a less [TS]

  of a multiple-choice kind of novel than [TS]

  then that was it still a no it'sit's [TS]

  a-a-and military action adventure story [TS]

  about what which I didn't expect talk [TS]

  about sequels that that lead me to [TS]

  places that I didn't expect I didn't [TS]

  expect after all the diplomacy of of [TS]

  fire with fire I did [TS]

  not expect a straight-up alien invasion [TS]

  novel but that's basically what trial by [TS]

  fire is and too long [TS]

  it'sit's minutes more military SF in [TS]

  space opera television i was like i was [TS]

  surprised how much pain is offstage in [TS]

  this novel I wasn't expecting that [TS]

  yeah he goes away for a while yeah I [TS]

  mean we get to do we get to see Trevor [TS]

  an old Boland true whenever he's [TS]

  offstage everyone's like where is he [TS]

  let's talk about him K&I miss Kane i [TS]

  hope i can simply quene one day that gee [TS]

  I wish you were in this city doesn't [TS]

  love interests [TS]

  uh-huh so there i mean it's kind of like [TS]

  everybody knows it which I found really [TS]

  amusing like the two women I guess kind [TS]

  of know at least one of them know is [TS]

  interested for obvious reasons and then [TS]

  the other could nose and then they're [TS]

  like nine other people who know that [TS]

  they know or don't know where they don't [TS]

  know which one knows which of detail of [TS]

  the romance and so there's lots of this [TS]

  discussion because they all know a [TS]

  detailed that's important to Cain and [TS]

  other people so I a little bit [TS]

  complicated but uh yeah kind of it it [TS]

  worked i guess that part of it [TS]

  this book was dumb oh boy oh boy haha [TS]

  all good experience god yeah yeah I I [TS]

  didn't like the first one I thought was [TS]

  okay i thought this one was also ok but [TS]

  I I don't like the character I think [TS]

  that the aliens are kind of stupid [TS]

  I ice i read the whole book so i didn't [TS]

  i didn't stop reading it but I didn't [TS]

  feel like I felt I with my life was not [TS]

  enriched by reading this book a I don't [TS]

  know I don't know I don't understand [TS]

  this is one of the one of the two books [TS]

  that i am confused as to why it was [TS]

  nominated for a nebula I guess maybe [TS]

  people just like mr. cat and but uh or [TS]

  dr. Gannon [TS]

  I don't get it lowered again into you [TS]

  haha space Lord cash for what it is it's [TS]

  competent at what it is [TS]

  hi prey is well its military SF yeah he [TS]

  spells on numbers and letters correctly [TS]

  it's it's it essentially adventurer SF [TS]

  in a military setting it's me [TS]

  I think it has more link with with space [TS]

  after that is military SF but that's [TS]

  kind of me and my weird definition so [TS]

  the first book felt very space opera [TS]

  like and this one has moments of space [TS]

  opera but the the series actually that [TS]

  reminded me the most an idea i'm not [TS]

  close to being well-read in military SF [TS]

  but it did remind me of John John [TS]

  birmingham so acts of time which is [TS]

  about that that 21st century naval fleet [TS]

  that goes back and change the course of [TS]

  the Second World War [TS]

  alright and i enjoyed those books a lot [TS]

  i enjoyed them [TS]

  I I feel like there's a little more [TS]

  social clash and a little more I mean [TS]

  there's some interesting things in those [TS]

  books that I felt were not as much in [TS]

  this book but but I you know the fact is [TS]

  there are long descriptions in this book [TS]

  of like how various kinds of ammunition [TS]

  work in zero gravity that I just don't [TS]

  care about I don't the nuts-and-bolts [TS]

  stuff just passes right over me and I [TS]

  know I get that some people just love [TS]

  that but it's just not those kind of [TS]

  mechanics of he's detailing like what [TS]

  the weapons are that are made up and how [TS]

  they work and like how the physics works [TS]

  and all that that's the stuff that just [TS]

  rolls over me I did I can I liked it a [TS]

  lot better when we had these characters [TS]

  doing things I thought the whole stuff [TS]

  of everything happening on the island of [TS]

  Java and the local population [TS]

  interacting with the people who were [TS]

  being kind of smuggled in in order to [TS]

  make the attack I thought that stuff was [TS]

  pretty interesting [TS]

  I thought the alien stuff was was ok [TS]

  like the idea that the aliens are just [TS]

  using earth as a as a it's just part of [TS]

  a larger game and they're all trying to [TS]

  play each other and so although it seems [TS]

  very different from the first novel [TS]

  actually what we see in the convocation [TS]

  and the first novel is kinda boring out [TS]

  here they're just playing it with our [TS]

  planet which is kind of I think kind of [TS]

  interesting although you can I mean like [TS]

  I figured out what the plot twist was [TS]

  about how about who one of the alien [TS]

  races was a very early hon I was like oh [TS]

  well that's what the answer is this is [TS]

  what's happening here but you know and [TS]

  can Reardon is just a little bit too [TS]

  much of a Johnny square job for me I [TS]

  feel like I'm not sure I felt like he [TS]

  had any depth is sort of good at [TS]

  everything [TS]

  and you know everybody loves him and you [TS]

  know it's like I like a hero but he's [TS]

  like the perfect amazing superhero guy [TS]

  forgive me for bringing bringing them up [TS]

  in this context Jason but it's out of [TS]

  the fence to charles to charles or his [TS]

  book but this is this feels to me like [TS]

  the kind of novel a good example of a [TS]

  good and well written example kind of [TS]

  novel the said puppies want to promote [TS]

  it's better than some of the stuff that [TS]

  wound up on the hugo bout thanks that [TS]

  puppy's rabbit puppies [TS]

  this is much better than most of the [TS]

  stuff that they tried to push but it's [TS]

  that same sort of spirit [TS]

  yeah well I mean it is a it although [TS]

  it's funny because I i get the sense [TS]

  like beam and militaries SF has [TS]

  definitely a more conservative kind of [TS]

  tint to it and that's fine but when i [TS]

  read trial by fire I think there's some [TS]

  really interesting kind of subversive [TS]

  things in it i mean you could read trial [TS]

  by fire as being about because it is it [TS]

  is more advanced people who have their [TS]

  own politics coming to a less advanced [TS]

  planet and stomping on it in order to [TS]

  it's very hard for me not to look at [TS]

  this and say I think he's actually [TS]

  making parallels to imperialism on earth [TS]

  and an advanced and rich countries [TS]

  fighting proxy wars in poor countries [TS]

  except in this case we have to look at [TS]

  earth as the poor country which kind of [TS]

  puts you in the place of all the people [TS]

  being stomped on by rich countries in it [TS]

  you know in our in our actual world so I [TS]

  actually find found at many moments I [TS]

  was like this is kind of subversive I [TS]

  wonder if people who love military SF [TS]

  who might be a little bit more [TS]

  conservative are going to read that and [TS]

  not like it or let it go or what because [TS]

  it was actually doesn't it does not seem [TS]

  like proselytizing and like a super [TS]

  conservative piece of politics in this [TS]

  book at all it to me I the way I read it [TS]

  was it was much more sneaky than that [TS]

  nuance yeah yeah yeah i mean that is one [TS]

  of the things I really did enjoy about [TS]

  this book is again and does attempt to [TS]

  kind of explore the really messy [TS]

  political and [TS]

  and in some cases physical elements of [TS]

  actually invading another country while [TS]

  also trying desperately to argue [TS]

  philosophically that it's not an [TS]

  invasion which is an imperialist idea [TS]

  that yeah we're not actually invading [TS]

  you were showing up and we're here to [TS]

  help [TS]

  we're here to help yeah right these are [TS]

  just military advisers we set them right [TS]

  we'll do everything we can to kind of [TS]

  avoid admitting that what's happening is [TS]

  an invasion and there are a couple [TS]

  conversations with with Cain and one of [TS]

  the aliens the name of which I've [TS]

  forgotten but one of the bug monkey [TS]

  creatures where he within the buggy [TS]

  creatures basically saying like no no [TS]

  we're not invading you've completely [TS]

  misinterpreted what's happening and [TS]

  we're all going [TS]

  no he's interpreted exactly what's [TS]

  happening you have propped up [TS]

  hey they koo you know and and supported [TS]

  this guy and it's an invasion that's [TS]

  what exactly is this happened here for [TS]

  reasons that are never fully review at [TS]

  least not up to that point or not [TS]

  revealed to everybody else so like [TS]

  humanity doesn't really know what the [TS]

  hell is going on and you expect them to [TS]

  just kind of like oh we're just be fine [TS]

  with this is all gonna be good we're [TS]

  just gonna have tea and crumpets later [TS]

  on it'll be great i love those elements [TS]

  although I will admit that i agree with [TS]

  you Jason that some of the descriptions [TS]

  stuff felt a little as you know Bob wish [TS]

  to me haha kind of three characters [TS]

  describing details and maybe that is an [TS]

  audience specific thing I don't know but [TS]

  that's something that I personally don't [TS]

  like them either a couple moments in the [TS]

  book where I was like okay you don't [TS]

  need to explain the plan to me [TS]

  just do it right well the John [TS]

  birmingham stuff which I again is one of [TS]

  my more recent exposures to some [TS]

  military SF is similar in that way and [TS]

  we're always like wow I really love it [TS]

  when you're talking about what a 1940's [TS]

  person would react how they would react [TS]

  to an ipad but then when you detail like [TS]

  you know the way that the turbines are [TS]

  used on these 20 you know 2020 era jet [TS]

  fighters I just my eyes glaze over and I [TS]

  think maybe that's just it's part of the [TS]

  package is that you know that people [TS]

  like affect the tom clancy right yeah [TS]

  yeah yeahs Houston i used to thumb pass [TS]

  those two and then when i read time [TS]

  playing yeah okay I get it [TS]

  invitation it's certainly to some degree [TS]

  it's an audience thing and I think that [TS]

  that's partly why but sometimes I I [TS]

  bounced hard off of this book I overall [TS]

  enjoy that was a lot of fun [TS]

  that's not necessarily we look for when [TS]

  it comes to like I'm nominating a novel [TS]

  I don't look just strictly for fun I [TS]

  look for a little more than that but at [TS]

  the same time that mean there were there [TS]

  moments are as like this book could be [TS]

  like 200 pages shorter [TS]

  oh yeah that is for sure if it felt it [TS]

  felt very long at points that it was [TS]

  just again we're doing because I felt [TS]

  like we were on the wheel of like let's [TS]

  go to all the characters and let's see [TS]

  them again and let's see them again that [TS]

  was like there was there were way too [TS]

  many spins at the wheel where I felt [TS]

  like are we wait you know we're waiting [TS]

  for that plan to go into it into action [TS]

  and we're still waiting and we're still [TS]

  waiting and Scott mentioned that earlier [TS]

  it it's too long i did the other [TS]

  subversive thing by the way the in here [TS]

  is that the the only people on earth who [TS]

  are really collaborating with the [TS]

  invaders or corporations I thought that [TS]

  was also an interesting thing that he [TS]

  yeah if you want to read it that way [TS]

  that he's saying the government's are [TS]

  trying to protect the Earth and the [TS]

  corporation's just turn tail because [TS]

  they figure they can become more [TS]

  profitable deal with the aliens that's [TS]

  interesting [TS]

  yeah it that felt less hammering me in [TS]

  the head then another book that's on our [TS]

  list that was talking about political [TS]

  stuff that fog I was being smacked in [TS]

  the face a lot [TS]

  this one didn't do that despite the fact [TS]

  that it should have given that it's very [TS]

  blatant like corporations involved like [TS]

  there's evil they are they're not really [TS]

  good people and all ultimately wants [TS]

  their bank loan armies yeah but I never [TS]

  felt like I was being like like he was [TS]

  bashing a political point into my head I [TS]

  just felt like no we're just dealing [TS]

  with very unsavory characters yeah and [TS]

  you know at the same time they they [TS]

  sometimes will make arguments that and [TS]

  trying to support and prop up their own [TS]

  ideas like completely oblivious to the [TS]

  fact that you know they're insane but [TS]

  you know I don't know it it's fun book i [TS]

  enjoyed it just a little long and needs [TS]

  to be cut [TS]

  i I didn't think it was too long I mean [TS]

  I went through it like him about two [TS]

  days and now I enjoyed it so I'm the [TS]

  emerging here on this [TS]

  I think the positive margin [TS]

  yeah something like that anymore about [TS]

  trial by fire [TS]

  I you know I felt that last last time we [TS]

  did this we talked about about game and [TS]

  I felt like we came across maybe a [TS]

  little more negatively than intended you [TS]

  know Scott didn't like it [TS]

  we will be clear about that I I'd love [TS]

  it but I you know but I thought it was [TS]

  okay [TS]

  I you know I i didn't i didn't love it [TS]

  parts of it i liked i felt like the [TS]

  world is really interesting and a end [TS]

  I've read alien invasion novels that I [TS]

  liked better and you know again this [TS]

  this book was not as much about [TS]

  exploring the world until like the last [TS]

  couple of chapters as it was about lots [TS]

  of military units fighting and that read [TS]

  less interesting to me then that even [TS]

  the last book was his sponsor break time [TS]

  again i want to tell you about mail [TS]

  route i use mail route has been using [TS]

  her out for a couple of years mail route [TS]

  is a service that sits between your mail [TS]

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  your server this happen to me not too [TS]

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  in the way you know what that stuff goes [TS]

  away mail route takes the punishment [TS]

  they take that stuff in they take the [TS]

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  here's all the stuff that i found that i [TS]

  think is bad [TS]

  1-click in that email and that mail is [TS]

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  and they'll never be filtered out again [TS]

  it doesn't happen that often but when it [TS]

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  happens in the cloud mail route does the [TS]

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  your inbox large organizations like [TS]

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  mail route it's easy to use from the [TS]

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  there's a risk-free trial you don't even [TS]

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  route dotnet / smell right now that's [TS]

  mail route dotnet / smell and thank you [TS]

  to my route for sponsoring the [TS]

  incomparable alright let's move on how [TS]

  about the three-body problem this is a [TS]

  Chinese novel translated into english by [TS]

  award winner winner can lu it wildly [TS]

  popular in china and and then brought [TS]

  over to the english-speaking world in [TS]

  this translation it was a lot a lot of [TS]

  stuff I did not expect the the opens [TS]

  with the Cultural Revolution which is [TS]

  probably a period of history that we in [TS]

  America do not understand at all or know [TS]

  anything about so that was a wonderful [TS]

  thing [TS]

  yeah and then just the second half of [TS]

  the novel where you get into the virtual [TS]

  reality in the the the computer game [TS]

  I mean there's just some scenes that are [TS]

  just jaw-dropping Lee amazing like a [TS]

  computer meat out of living beat the [TS]

  whole yes [TS]

  yeah you know assembling in themselves [TS]

  and in the you know I don't know how [TS]

  exciting a game this would be because it [TS]

  just seemed to be undergoing not much [TS]

  action but just some of the stuff that [TS]

  they depict in this book is amazing and [TS]

  then the third part which is when we get [TS]

  into what's going on behind the scenes a [TS]

  lot of exposition but again a really [TS]

  interesting story and I'm look I'm I [TS]

  like can't wait for the second book to [TS]

  come out it came across from me as it as [TS]

  a weird fusion of Gregory Benford and [TS]

  isaac asimov I mean I am I felt a little [TS]

  bit like Timescape but the characters [TS]

  weren't quite as they're much more as a [TS]

  movie and much more ideas in the light [TS]

  the in science and philosophy the game [TS]

  and everything because revolution must [TS]

  warn you about the cultural revolution [TS]

  forwarding this book I knew from the [TS]

  movie the red violin [TS]

  don't judge me ah so that's why did you [TS]

  heard a little bit i'll so but yeah I [TS]

  mean the characters weren't there by [TS]

  just say it's like the working out [TS]

  working out of everything was and this [TS]

  is route some real beauty and can look I [TS]

  mean can lose translation is [TS]

  pitch-perfect this is like he should he [TS]

  should be translating more Chinese [TS]

  novels clearly if this if this is what [TS]

  he can do given a given full given full [TS]

  length stuff to work out the keys [TS]

  translating sequel though which is kind [TS]

  of disappointing now he's doing the [TS]

  third and that was only because he was [TS]

  working on his own novel that's alright [TS]

  just get timed out that way [TS]

  yeah and and this does didn't feel like [TS]

  his own now I've ride up [TS]

  I've read his I've right out of the [TS]

  Great Sea Kings in feel like grace the [TS]

  King so it's not like he wrote we wrote [TS]

  the book thank God well but but he [TS]

  clearly ready rendered Oh lose pros into [TS]

  very very good English and it [TS]

  I mean I i could look it may be up with [TS]

  some very apparent to me that this is [TS]

  the list came out 1980 you would [TS]

  probably sweep all the words without [TS]

  question now I think I want more little [TS]

  more from from characters and I got [TS]

  that's an interesting thing to say Paul [TS]

  M [TS]

  I didn't have an issue with the [TS]

  characters i thought i thought the [TS]

  characters were fine i mean sometimes it [TS]

  felt a little thin but I think that's [TS]

  because it's dealing with so much [TS]

  high-concept elements but overall I [TS]

  really love this and i love that [TS]

  included footnotes to explain stuff that [TS]

  I know nothing about because they didn't [TS]

  teach anything about the cultural [TS]

  revolution in high school they may have [TS]

  mentioned it but they certainly didn't [TS]

  teach it so when things are happening [TS]

  and there are references to things that [TS]

  I know nothing about it was really nice [TS]

  to have the context available [TS]

  I also really love that this book messed [TS]

  with narrative style a lot it jumps [TS]

  between various kinds of things [TS]

  throughout the book huh [TS]

  sometimes even John residents itself [TS]

  which I really like [TS]

  mostly because that's the kind of stuff [TS]

  that really appeals to me a lot when it [TS]

  comes on her novels is anything that's [TS]

  kind of messing with the traditions as [TS]

  it were [TS]

  now granted this is coming out of China [TS]

  so I don't know what the literary [TS]

  traditions in China are which means i [TS]

  don't understand what from a literary [TS]

  perspective it may be playing against or [TS]

  with so I'm interpreting that from a [TS]

  completely American perspective which [TS]

  could be totally wrong but all that I [TS]

  found really enjoyable I love the [TS]

  concept i found it very bewildering the [TS]

  beginning because it's so embedded in [TS]

  the cultural revolution and I'm thought [TS]

  i was reading science fiction novel and [TS]

  what was going on but once it started to [TS]

  really clarify what was happening it [TS]

  made a lot of sense and I just overall I [TS]

  think it's probably one of the strongest [TS]

  novels of the lot and is I think Paul [TS]

  you may be kind of right that it's a [TS]

  maybe if this was came earlier it may [TS]

  have been more of a sweeping kind of [TS]

  ordeal however I i would not be [TS]

  surprised if this picked up one of the [TS]

  major SF awards not would be surprised [TS]

  either idea i've been especially because [TS]

  it's because because it is giving us a [TS]

  window into chinese science fiction and [TS]

  that alone is a good thing above the [TS]

  merits of the book itself Scott what [TS]

  what's your take on the three-body [TS]

  problem I i enjoyed it i like [TS]

  I like that it is a non-western book so [TS]

  this is I think probably the first [TS]

  Chinese science fiction book I've ever [TS]

  read [TS]

  and so it was interesting to have a very [TS]

  different perspective on kind of a [TS]

  sci-fi tropes so it was a fascinating [TS]

  from that perspective and I like books [TS]

  that make me feel a little alien to the [TS]

  book that makes any sense so it's from [TS]

  such a different cultural perspective [TS]

  that was you you know different than my [TS]

  own so I feel like the other as I'm [TS]

  reading it which is always an [TS]

  interesting experience and i liked it i [TS]

  mean i didn't think you know compared to [TS]

  American science fiction is a little [TS]

  clunky but that's just a personal [TS]

  opinion I I thought was very good and I [TS]

  think it deserved to be nominated i'm [TS]

  not sure if it's going to win who knows [TS]

  but I like thumbs up for me [TS]

  Scott is the one that you said it's it's [TS]

  barely science fiction until the end [TS]

  yes if thats remember your comment as i [TS]

  was reading about the cultural [TS]

  revolution and thinking huh [TS]

  Scott I see what Scott was saying now [TS]

  although i really like the stuff about [TS]

  the cultural revolution because I too [TS]

  had no no idea and and so that was fun [TS]

  like like like several of you have said [TS]

  it was it was it's fun to see something [TS]

  in it from a different cultures [TS]

  perspective and about things that we [TS]

  don't get you know taught here not [TS]

  understanding just the level of violence [TS]

  and upheaval that happened and then [TS]

  watching this one character kind of end [TS]

  up in a very strange place because of [TS]

  what happens to her and her father [TS]

  during the Cultural Revolution I thought [TS]

  that was all really interesting and I [TS]

  kept wondering okay what where is this [TS]

  going [TS]

  and then we get to the we get to the but [TS]

  some there's some stuff in here that's [TS]

  just really bizarre the I felt I felt [TS]

  almost like like Stephen King kind of [TS]

  things there Dean Koons kind of things [TS]

  where they where the person is almost [TS]

  driven the scientist is driven almost [TS]

  mad by the fact that suddenly there's a [TS]

  account down happening in his vision [TS]

  wherever he looks [TS]

  you're such a bizarre kind of like how [TS]

  could that exists and must be going [TS]

  crazy but he sees it everywhere and I [TS]

  just thought like wow I'm now it's [TS]

  almost like i'm reading a horror novel [TS]

  here and I don't know how this is gonna [TS]

  get paid off and you know what [TS]

  in the end it is explained which I never [TS]

  believed there would be an explanation [TS]

  for that and it was and it is actually [TS]

  explain the virtual reality stuff I [TS]

  think saying that it would not make a [TS]

  particularly entertaining game is [TS]

  probably a strong point I felt like it [TS]

  was really surreal and interesting i [TS]

  have to admit that i found the the [TS]

  breaks between those scenes where we [TS]

  would go back to that the chain-smoking [TS]

  cop who wisecracks but is it is working [TS]

  class but is actually very wise and [TS]

  provides a sort of grounding for the for [TS]

  the for the for the scientists i really [TS]

  love that character i started hating him [TS]

  and then I end up loving him because he [TS]

  was such a change of pace from the [TS]

  temples and pyramids and things that are [TS]

  happening in the in the virtual reality [TS]

  so I I yeah there were moments where I [TS]

  thought this is the most bizarre thing [TS]

  I've ever read and and think that the [TS]

  characters are always very well drawn [TS]

  I'm also fascinated by the fact that it [TS]

  the main character in this book is [TS]

  essentially somebody who decides that [TS]

  that that what's the line and [TS]

  ghostbusters uh he thought that humanity [TS]

  was too sick to survive and then they [TS]

  look around the the jail cell and say [TS]

  well maybe he that that's that's who the [TS]

  character is in this book she thinks I i [TS]

  wrote down the line I've lost hope in [TS]

  the human race after what I've seen [TS]

  human society is incapable of [TS]

  self-improvement and we need the [TS]

  intervention of an outside force so you [TS]

  talk about alien invasions and things [TS]

  like that you know in this book that's [TS]

  sort of where we end up as somebody who [TS]

  feels like they need that you know they [TS]

  want to they're building a movement to [TS]

  give up on humanity which is just that's [TS]

  a big idea and its really interesting [TS]

  and then at the end I go what this is [TS]

  the start of the series and you know I [TS]

  had that much too but i liked it i i i [TS]

  didn't love it i think i like they're [TS]

  there are definitely at least a couple [TS]

  books on this list that i like better [TS]

  but but it's [TS]

  so different and that goes for a lot I [TS]

  mean it's different and novel and weird [TS]

  and has some really huge ideas which is [TS]

  sort of what I was thinking when when [TS]

  when there is a concept of if this had [TS]

  been written 20 or 30 or 40 years ago [TS]

  like there was a period in sci-fi where [TS]

  I felt like it was all about big ideas [TS]

  and the characters were kind of not that [TS]

  important and this book isn't quite as [TS]

  Extreme as that but it's kinda like that [TS]

  where the ideas are huge and the [TS]

  characters are around i used to be i [TS]

  used to be into that source is just like [TS]

  one day with Rama I can't tell you much [TS]

  about all about the character I could [TS]

  tell you all about that damn spaceship [TS]

  characters like if I can't do anything [TS]

  about surprises there were characters i [TS]

  guess people don't wander around that [TS]

  spaceship they had the flying thing [TS]

  that's all I remember about what the [TS]

  character amber but the spaceship on my [TS]

  god this patient and this book this [TS]

  novel writing me of that so the era of [TS]

  science picked out by agree not quite [TS]

  not quite as Extreme but that sort of [TS]

  error [TS]

  yeah sounds like everybody everybody [TS]

  liked it although a you know we're all [TS]

  we are are all Outsiders in a way [TS]

  looking at this and and but you know I [TS]

  can i love the challenge of that this is [TS]

  not something like you've read before I [TS]

  think that's really exciting to get a [TS]

  book that you think also important to [TS]

  give us breath and exposed to other [TS]

  stuff books was just world SMS Sean can [TS]

  attest yeah well the author grew up [TS]

  reading I I'm much i'm not clear whether [TS]

  reading in English or reading and [TS]

  translation but grew up reading Western [TS]

  science fiction as well as stuff in [TS]

  China and I think that's really [TS]

  interesting where that person now that [TS]

  author has kind of internalize that and [TS]

  then spun it back out into their own [TS]

  thing so it's it's kind of cool that [TS]

  then it comes back to us [TS]

  I really hope this novel does really [TS]

  well and i'm guessing from a sales [TS]

  perspective is has because this is kind [TS]

  of with his moments where think they put [TS]

  a lot of money to translate this book [TS]

  right and if it bombed the chances that [TS]

  we would get another Chinese science [TS]

  fiction novel translated anytime soon [TS]

  would be pretty slim and there's so much [TS]

  stuff being written in China right now [TS]

  that's not in english and you gotta pay [TS]

  a translator to get it you can't just [TS]

  like have like it's not like fansubs for [TS]

  japanese anime hey [TS]

  nobody's gonna translate paste or novel [TS]

  into google translate [TS]

  no no he mean he's obviously done well [TS]

  enough so that tour has done to the two [TS]

  other books in the trilogy but if you [TS]

  look on amazon and barnes and nobles you [TS]

  can get electronic book editions of many [TS]

  of his other books at this point maybe [TS]

  about a dozen i think i'm not sure how [TS]

  well as translated but yea yea there up [TS]

  there up for sale [TS]

  well I would be that sounds really [TS]

  sketchy putting out they were all were [TS]

  on sale like the first week they went up [TS]

  so I picked them all up so I had some [TS]

  point I'll get 1 i'll let you know how [TS]

  they are but they're you let me know if [TS]

  they sound like Google Translate hope [TS]

  not i'm also hoping they were legally [TS]

  translated and easy ass you know [TS]

  benefiting to that would be my concerns [TS]

  because I know there's been a couple [TS]

  instances have pirated pirate black box [TS]

  yeah yeah yeah and I know in in China [TS]

  there there's a-there come some infamous [TS]

  harry potter ripoffs that exists in [TS]

  China which is kind of funny but you can [TS]

  google it it's fun too [TS]

  let's take a break let me tell you about [TS]

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  you'll never see that crate so go to [TS]

  loot crate dot-com / now enter code [TS]

  smell and you'll save three dollars on [TS]

  your new subscription today thank you to [TS]

  loot crate for sponsoring the [TS]

  uncomfortable [TS]

  alright let's move on to coming home by [TS]

  jack mcdevitt haha ok so so so let me [TS]

  let me tell you seriously let me tell [TS]

  you something about jack mcdevitt I've [TS]

  read I've read almost every jack [TS]

  mcdevitt novel mom i love that the [TS]

  character is inexplicably eat sandwiches [TS]

  at various points throughout the books i [TS]

  think Jack never really love sin which [TS]

  is I I once you once once you know once [TS]

  you look for the munching on a sandwich [TS]

  you can't not see it in every book he [TS]

  writes I like the the persona Hutchins [TS]

  books I I generally like like these [TS]

  books the Alex Benedict books they're [TS]

  fun adventure ii Indiana Jones the kind [TS]

  of thing there's always somebody who's [TS]

  there's always a spaceship accident and [TS]

  there's somebody who is revealed to be [TS]

  the villain who hold somebody at [TS]

  gunpoint and they're almost like I mean [TS]

  the they're off almost a form like romeo [TS]

  yeah there is a formula it's adventurous [TS]

  his world building is interesting and [TS]

  they're fun and I really enjoyed reading [TS]

  those books so now i see that coming [TS]

  home [TS]

  the latest Alex Benedict book has been [TS]

  nominated for a nebula lord I so I get [TS]

  to read for this podcast I didn't even [TS]

  know it was out so I go and I read it [TS]

  and I think to myself [TS]

  really this is the one you nominate [TS]

  because it's I think it's the least [TS]

  interesting of any of the books of his [TS]

  that i've read so that's my that's my [TS]

  take is I actually like this author and [TS]

  I like this series and it's comforting [TS]

  and it's not great art but i'm not sure [TS]

  this one's even like among his best let [TS]

  alone art in any way I didn't understand [TS]

  why is the series is called the Alex [TS]

  Benedict series right in this book he [TS]

  hardly appears at all and she chases [TS]

  chases the chronicler of the adventures [TS]

  of Alex Benedict and so chases the [TS]

  narrator chase kolpath is the narrator [TS]

  realities can can I ask a question for [TS]

  those that have read all the other books [TS]

  it is this just like clive cussler Dirk [TS]

  Pitt but in space kind of oh I mean I'll [TS]

  be honest and say that I when I picture [TS]

  Alex Benedict I sort of [TS]

  a pictures at Brannigan [TS]

  oh uh in my mind that sort of who i'm [TS]

  picturing he's a you know not quite [TS]

  dashing hero but yeah I mean that that's [TS]

  what these that's what these are is [TS]

  faster than light travel adventures to [TS]

  in his case he's he's yeah you could say [TS]

  that I mean he's supposed to be kind of [TS]

  an Indiana Jones because he's this [TS]

  archaeologist who is finding but he [TS]

  finds relics and sells them instead of [TS]

  like turning them into the museum so [TS]

  he's got that kind of questionable you [TS]

  know is he really on the side of good or [TS]

  not or is he just a mercenary but you [TS]

  know that you place them on on [TS]

  interesting situations and it can be [TS]

  very it can be very interesting but yeah [TS]

  alex is sidelined for a lot of this and [TS]

  it's just yeah it was it's not that [TS]

  interesting [TS]

  it's not that interesting book and I'm [TS]

  saying that is somebody who likes jack [TS]

  mcdevitt so I'm a little baffled for by [TS]

  why this is getting honors I am really [TS]

  baffled that you just said that the [TS]

  characters in this book is kinda like [TS]

  Indiana Jones which is possibly the most [TS]

  false statement of my occupied by [TS]

  occupation right i mean literally [TS]

  geologist he is an archaeologist he [TS]

  looks for relics that's like saying like [TS]

  you know [TS]

  ER doctors are just like Grey's Anatomy [TS]

  yeah you on that they are did their [TS]

  doctors doctors the doctors that's not [TS]

  it's just well no I really didn't like [TS]

  this book if it's unclear what yet and [TS]

  it feels it feels a little bit like this [TS]

  is the i think one of the problems I [TS]

  have with it is i feel like this is the [TS]

  resolution of a plot arc for him which [TS]

  is at long last he's been with his his [TS]

  missing uncle has been there for all [TS]

  this time of like Oh his uncle died as [TS]

  uncle disappeared in this thing and then [TS]

  in the last book I didn't first book he [TS]

  disappears [TS]

  yeah that's right yeah and so so you end [TS]

  up with this [TS]

  oh and then they figure out what's [TS]

  happening and then there's a ghost ship [TS]

  and then this one they like all right I [TS]

  think we can solve it and they bring him [TS]

  back but it it sort of feels like more [TS]

  of a capstone to a story arc then a [TS]

  story and you know what I love about [TS]

  these books as they end up in really [TS]

  weird you know they end up in really [TS]

  weird planets somewhere and [TS]

  some alien you know or lost human [TS]

  culture and and i find that kind of [TS]

  fascinating and hear what the one thing [TS]

  that I would say is really interesting [TS]

  about this book as opposed to his other [TS]

  books is that he shied away from the [TS]

  earth and here the earth is the Lost [TS]

  Planet they go to earth and and and the [TS]

  most thing that will stick with me from [TS]

  these books is the fact that these [TS]

  people in the far future have [TS]

  essentially no concept of life in in our [TS]

  time or even like a thousand years after [TS]

  our time that that even though we think [TS]

  well met you know now we're never going [TS]

  to be ancient history we are our time is [TS]

  completely lost to these people and I [TS]

  thought that was kind of interesting [TS]

  making worth the loss planet but it's [TS]

  much less you know you know if there's [TS]

  like literally a boat accident this park [TS]

  your boat a book quoted quote accident [TS]

  it was not it was not an accident very [TS]

  yes i was going to say it's very Murder [TS]

  She Wrote Scott but I don't want to [TS]

  insult Murder She Wrote that's right [TS]

  don't belittle mercy no no but his [TS]

  partner mystery kind of stuff out at [TS]

  that point [TS]

  yes they're there is a formula I'm a [TS]

  great driver had a bunch of jack [TS]

  mcdevitt hours i met jack is very nice [TS]

  guy [TS]

  this doesn't feel like one of his better [TS]

  outspending now be perfectly honest i [TS]

  mean i mean i can see the forms i can [TS]

  see what he's doing but it's just that [TS]

  he's done better than this I know you're [TS]

  pretty this Jack why don't why did this [TS]

  would get nominate I don't know but I [TS]

  mean I I would i have to say i have to [TS]

  say this is probably the weakest of the [TS]

  nebula nominees for me i'm not saying [TS]

  it's a bad book but it's just not it's [TS]

  not so does it look I'm yeah [TS]

  oh it's a bad but yeah I'm gonna agree [TS]

  and I like I said I like Devin read the [TS]

  books in this series i think this is the [TS]

  weakest of all the nominees [TS]

  it's sad because I do like him in [TS]

  general of all the of all the books that [TS]

  have chosen and I don't think it's just [TS]

  me analyze the good under a different [TS]

  light because I got nominated because i [TS]

  didn't really enjoy it and I i really [TS]

  enjoy reading the McDevitt books the [TS]

  kind of books i read on vacation [TS]

  especially if I'm like on or near a [TS]

  beach and I really enjoy them it's like [TS]

  it's just fun and it's a fifth fastest [TS]

  reading it's an adventure and this one [TS]

  was just more like a slug and not [TS]

  interesting [TS]

  too bad but what do you think fried well [TS]

  i mean i think this is at wondering [TS]

  whether he's gonna reboot the series but [TS]

  the next one was ending the series for [TS]

  this night but not the uncles back [TS]

  yeah i mean it's it's not like i do [TS]

  agree it's not the best book I like his [TS]

  books overall i did enjoy a lot of this [TS]

  in the whole mystery of where where the [TS]

  Apollo Landers in all the stuff that's [TS]

  going on I mean all the books it's like [TS]

  a fibber mcgee book or a John McDonald [TS]

  book I mean this you know they don't we [TS]

  start off with a opening chapter which [TS]

  you're like will eventually tie into the [TS]

  rest and there's always a lot of digging [TS]

  in libraries and stuff and travel and [TS]

  sandwiches and sandwiches I anyway [TS]

  department but no t we should say that [TS]

  that he did win the nebula for seeker in [TS]

  2005 which is the third book in the alex [TS]

  bennett series that was expected that [TS]

  was a much better part of this violates [TS]

  like half of all of my rules of bad [TS]

  novel writing one is involved a prologue [TS]

  that references a story that is more [TS]

  interesting than the actual novel haha [TS]

  heart is this dark age that occurs which [TS]

  was like why you tell that story i'm [TS]

  like when the earth went to crap that [TS]

  sounds so exciting but your it's of [TS]

  course told by a lady at the uncle or [TS]

  whatever you just tell us that these [TS]

  telling this kid he's like hey let's go [TS]

  take this to her in the moon base and [TS]

  like we'll have sandwiches and talk [TS]

  about interesting stuff that happened to [TS]

  us and it's like well that sounds much [TS]

  more interesting but then we get the [TS]

  actual story and about 50 pages in us [TS]

  like this is not going very quickly [TS]

  about what is the story and so I scroll [TS]

  forward you know it's like okay well [TS]

  let's let's figure out maybe some crazy [TS]

  stuff happens later right like maybe [TS]

  some big plot twist happens MIT from the [TS]

  book and so we'll get some crazy stuff [TS]

  in the end like I don't know crazy [TS]

  aliens with like lasers on their heads [TS]

  show up for something [TS]

  nope that's not what happens we get [TS]

  basically what is a 350-page story that [TS]

  should have been like a 70-page novella [TS]

  yeah I can i I can't argue with that i [TS]

  can tell you what I think I think check [TS]

  David does not [TS]

  he's a feel-good kind of writer somebody [TS]

  wants to write the story about the dark [TS]

  ages he just wants to have it there [TS]

  because these books are very comfortable [TS]

  they're all about people eating [TS]

  sandwiches and going to restaurants [TS]

  and going on going to the beach and they [TS]

  fly in their little you know auto-drive [TS]

  little space pods that fly them places [TS]

  or you know two different cities and [TS]

  it's like a travel log it's super like [TS]

  it's like or just creature comforts for [TS]

  everybody it is a magical place the [TS]

  future the far future and i also found [TS]

  like the central concept like all the [TS]

  characters say repeatedly there are no [TS]

  mysteries left to solve we're so bored [TS]

  we've solved everything but then they [TS]

  have this huge central mystery of why [TS]

  the ship's keep falling and disappearing [TS]

  and no one knows how to figure it out [TS]

  it's very confusing now that didn't i [TS]

  didn't buy that for a second like you [TS]

  serious like you had a prologue where [TS]

  you announce a mystery you know what [TS]

  happened to the Landers where they go [TS]

  there's a mystery you don't know the [TS]

  answer to that question clearly and like [TS]

  come on they cannot have got like 10,000 [TS]

  years in the future we can have got to a [TS]

  point where humanity is like well [TS]

  there's nothing else for us to figure [TS]

  out so we're all bored now [TS]

  are you serious are you serious you've [TS]

  figured everything out [TS]

  no I'm not mmm no not buying it so I [TS]

  just didn't like this book yeah no [TS]

  comment [TS]

  sean is passionate feel like I hear you [TS]

  I hear you're just so bored I just [TS]

  inclined and I'm inclined to like his [TS]

  stuff and like I said it's like a warm [TS]

  it's like a warm blanket it's just all [TS]

  its just cozy to read them and I was [TS]

  like here it's just not some [TS]

  oh well maybe next time jack mcdevitt [TS]

  maybe hope so next time i was really [TS]

  looking forward to that one and then it [TS]

  just almost made me cry entire ok [TS]

  alright let's talk we got two left [TS]

  let's talk about annihilation by jeff [TS]

  vandermeer yes i think first you go [TS]

  first [TS]

  yes that's right the seven times yes [TS]

  Fred well it is short which i think is [TS]

  really interesting i was reading it and [TS]

  thinking wow this was really moving [TS]

  along and I was watching on my kindle i [TS]

  was watching the percentage going up [TS]

  going wow this is this is not a thousand [TS]

  page novel thank goodness i think it's [TS]

  it's three it's 18 thousand page novel [TS]

  broken into three parts and this is the [TS]

  first part me he wrote this [TS]

  he had a he got sick and had this weird [TS]

  dream [TS]

  so he started writing it down as a novel [TS]

  and this is what came out and this is [TS]

  kind of white I mean maybe this is why [TS]

  people don't like it but this is why I [TS]

  do like it it feels like a dream to me [TS]

  and it all the good ways and basically [TS]

  what happened is in sometime in the past [TS]

  something weird happened in the u.s. [TS]

  probably in florida and seal Sean off [TS]

  behind a a place called the southern [TS]

  reach where weird things happen and the [TS]

  government keeps sending expeditions [TS]

  into trying to figure out what's going [TS]

  on this expedition you have four [TS]

  characters none of which use their names [TS]

  are only known by the professions they [TS]

  go in and basically as soon as they get [TS]

  into this via the area reacts things [TS]

  start going weird people die people [TS]

  transform strange creatures are seen and [TS]

  strange buildings are explored so it's [TS]

  more a mood thing it's a you're not [TS]

  getting a characterization out of this [TS]

  you're not hardly even get a story but [TS]

  you're just going to get this very [TS]

  strange feeling like a dream which for [TS]

  some authors like polo or Lovecraft or a [TS]

  van Vogt excelled in this sort of thing [TS]

  and I kind of enjoy that because of that [TS]

  line I totally agree i love this book [TS]

  uh I thought it was great i also think [TS]

  it would be so I was talking to one of [TS]

  my friends about this book and about [TS]

  this podcast and how I thought that this [TS]

  book was the best-written of the three [TS]

  like the writing is just beautiful its [TS]

  atmospheric but the plot is [TS]

  inconsequential the characters are [TS]

  inconsequential and I can understand how [TS]

  that would drive people crazy and just [TS]

  hate this book because if you're reading [TS]

  it for a plot and characters you're just [TS]

  going to be like what the hell that I [TS]

  just read this makes no sense and I'm [TS]

  angry [TS]

  but and that's why I don't think if I [TS]

  could wave a magic wand and award the [TS]

  nebula just something i would not give [TS]

  its to annihilation because i feel like [TS]

  the nebula award like shows up on a [TS]

  cover and someone who's sci-fi curious [TS]

  will pick it up and then they will read [TS]

  this book and possibly never read any [TS]

  science between over again and I don't [TS]

  want that to happen so a little more [TS]

  straightforward story would probably be [TS]

  better suited to win the nebula but if [TS]

  if I had to pick the one that I love the [TS]

  most to win i would i would pick [TS]

  annihilation [TS]

  well this might be I mean if the hugo [TS]

  last year they gave what they nominated [TS]

  the wheel time because they have this [TS]

  obscure rule about series this might [TS]

  have been the case where they should [TS]

  have done that with this because all [TS]

  three books came out last year in this [TS]

  trilogy and are now out and under one [TS]

  set of covers and each 18 it's [TS]

  interesting how he changed the approach [TS]

  for each book and it's a very [TS]

  interesting experiment for the whole [TS]

  thing and maybe that should have been [TS]

  the denomination of course we would've [TS]

  been reading a what that's 1,800 what [TS]

  yeah but I would be okay with that [TS]

  because Jeff and Amir is he's a genius [TS]

  I've been a fan of his Sin City Saints [TS]

  and madmen meter which is also a [TS]

  beautiful book not a short book but [TS]

  deservedly a long book and also has [TS]

  fruiting bodies mushrooms [TS]

  yeah it if family or is extremely weird [TS]

  author and that makes sense given all [TS]

  the anthologies on weird stuff he's done [TS]

  it's clear that that's where he's at [TS]

  home [TS]

  we're just kind of ripping apart reality [TS]

  a little bit and that's part of why i [TS]

  love about annihilation not least that [TS]

  it's you know what part of it is it's [TS]

  short and so it it's nice that it's not [TS]

  a 10,000 page novel so I could I could [TS]

  really push through it but it's his [TS]

  prose is really crisp and his ideas are [TS]

  just like the further you get into this [TS]

  book it's like going into a madhouse and [TS]

  i love that I love that about all of his [TS]

  work is a lot like that it's it's very [TS]

  surreal at times [TS]

  genre bending it's crazy [TS]

  he just as weird stuff with the like the [TS]

  natural landscape amitabh this book is [TS]

  fairly obviously influenced by by [TS]

  Florida the Florida fauna and i know he [TS]

  said in interviews that it you know he'd [TS]

  go out to the woods and like take hikes [TS]

  and see weird stuff in the woods link [TS]

  like we're daughter creatures and stuff [TS]

  i don't know if he's actually seen weird [TS]

  creatures that's what just we said in [TS]

  interviews but while the board the [TS]

  boring stuff in the book is actually [TS]

  happened to him real or yeah [TS]

  ah i'm even shoot at it or whatever but [TS]

  that that's directly from his own [TS]

  experiences arm and the the right i [TS]

  think the writing or the tunnel [TS]

  sequences what happened in his nightmare [TS]

  so you know that would make sense add [TS]

  disqus strange strange dreams [TS]

  yeah that titles a whole metaphor for [TS]

  this book because the deep you go into [TS]

  this book that he is like going deeper [TS]

  at all trying to read the words on that [TS]

  tunnel trying to make sense of it and [TS]

  there's that creature at the bottom [TS]

  there's that creature at the bottom [TS]

  and it's just like it's just like you [TS]

  can't escape it [TS]

  I listen to this as an audiobook driving [TS]

  back from Arkansas in the middle of our [TS]

  to drive reading is not listening is [TS]

  Arkansas and Missouri that was a very [TS]

  odd experience about drive-through [TS]

  backwards Arkansas listening to this I [TS]

  tell you that was a very odd way to [TS]

  experiences because perfect i have been [TS]

  only a more perfect was on the on the on [TS]

  the Florida coast where eroded that so [TS]

  this book this book affected me strongly [TS]

  because I listen to it or just the right [TS]

  place to really get my good really get [TS]

  feelings my bones and like I've been [TS]

  reading his books and reading his books [TS]

  in city of st. imagine the original not [TS]

  even though expand on the small 1i have [TS]

  wave okay yeah because because it came [TS]

  out in two verses came in this small and [TS]

  they came in the big heart for night I [TS]

  read both of those and so I've been [TS]

  exposed to is to the spores of its [TS]

  friction for a long long time now and [TS]

  also explores of his comments on a [TS]

  signal platter story friend knows about [TS]

  uh well I'm the original spore spore [TS]

  recipient from my yes you are but you [TS]

  have so this guy I was I was realized I [TS]

  mean his prints crows is just evocative [TS]

  the world i mean yeah i mean the [TS]

  characters are archetypes because [TS]

  they're only given as Julius titles and [TS]

  they're not really well characterized [TS]

  not even the biologist but it is just [TS]

  just the sense of this world that II [TS]

  area exedy folks is just hunting i can [TS]

  see how it came out of the dream Jason I [TS]

  think you might have a different haha [TS]

  and waiting [TS]

  yeah I i think i agree that he is a very [TS]

  talented writer and this is an [TS]

  incredibly well-written book i think [TS]

  there are images in it that are amazing [TS]

  i am there are passages that i [TS]

  highlighted that I thought were really [TS]

  cool i like the idea of who the [TS]

  biologists is or at least says she is [TS]

  about you no not there's an interesting [TS]

  passage where she says I I'm not a [TS]

  religious or superstitious purchase [TS]

  person they might see it differently [TS]

  I'm not those people on just the [TS]

  biologist I don't require any of this to [TS]

  have a deeper meaning which i think is [TS]

  really interesting about this character [TS]

  that this character is sort of accepting [TS]

  what she sees and not trying to [TS]

  transform it into something else which [TS]

  is at all it's almost at you know as a [TS]

  as a reader or as a writer right it's [TS]

  almost like putting down your card of [TS]

  saying so you can choose to view this on [TS]

  one level or you can choose to view it [TS]

  on another level you decide it's really [TS]

  an interesting gambit almost I think of [TS]

  another part of the writer so all that [TS]

  said I came to the end I thought and I [TS]

  hate to make fun i make fun of a [TS]

  Goodreads reviewers who spent the first [TS]

  three quarters of the review describing [TS]

  the rating system in detail haha but i [TS]

  actually ended up being in that position [TS]

  where i was hovering over the over the [TS]

  rating at the end of the book because i [TS]

  read on my Kindle and thinking and I [TS]

  literally thought well is this 4 stars [TS]

  are two stars but and I i said it was [TS]

  two stars and here's why [TS]

  although i think it is beautiful and it [TS]

  is dreamlike there are two ways to [TS]

  interpret the phrase dreamlike and 1 is [TS]

  0 and i want to mention it it did bring [TS]

  back Lovecraft to me it's got that [TS]

  feeling of of you know strange [TS]

  happenings and horrible things are going [TS]

  to happen and it's it's weird and [TS]

  there's madness and and I thought that [TS]

  was kind of effective but in the end the [TS]

  dreamlike thing you know dreamlike thing [TS]

  can be this this mood and aware things [TS]

  don't make sense and all sorts of doing [TS]

  things can happen dreams also don't make [TS]

  any sense and you can say something as [TS]

  dreamlike and what it really is is the [TS]

  author coming up with a whole bunch of [TS]

  different stuff and just slapping it [TS]

  into the book and saying dream and [TS]

  honestly I felt the presence of the [TS]

  author a little bit too much for me to [TS]

  like this book it felt to me like an [TS]

  exercise that there were interesting [TS]

  images stitch together but for me it [TS]

  didn't work for me it felt artificial it [TS]

  really much felt like he had he had [TS]

  written some really interesting pieces [TS]

  about Florida flora and fauna and some [TS]

  creepy things about this [TS]

  staircase and all that and kind of [TS]

  slapped it all together but it didn't [TS]

  hold for me so you know I I'm trying not [TS]

  to be unkind because I think he's I [TS]

  think his writing is beautiful but in [TS]

  the end it felt kind of like a con to me [TS]

  it didn't i didn't buy into it so in the [TS]

  end I gotta say it was way better [TS]

  written than several of the books on the [TS]

  left this list but I i can't say that i [TS]

  liked it i do sometimes enjoy lyrical I [TS]

  I don't require a plot and characters in [TS]

  every book i read like I said I feel [TS]

  like there's a spell that can be revoked [TS]

  and it just the spell broke for me and I [TS]

  i started thinking of it much more as if [TS]

  i was reading short stories from a [TS]

  fiction writing class and saying you [TS]

  know [TS]

  yes you did put together five images [TS]

  from that dream you had last night after [TS]

  you had a little too much taco bell and [TS]

  good for you you're a good writer but [TS]

  this doesn't get these are just images [TS]

  so we're well where's the rest of it the [TS]

  next two books are very different [TS]

  I'll say that much anyway I'm glad i [TS]

  read it and I'm also glad which I'm also [TS]

  glad it was short and I don't just mean [TS]

  that insulting well I really like that [TS]

  it move it [TS]

  it moved and ended and you know more [TS]

  books should probably last we said [TS]

  earlier should probably take that to [TS]

  heart that they don't only double yes [TS]

  overstuffed this is a lien on it [TS]

  beautiful beautifully written book that [TS]

  just you know i didn't i didn't think [TS]

  came together but you know I i agree [TS]

  with you on all the other points that is [TS]

  he's a very good writer [TS]

  guys I think that we all have reached an [TS]

  understanding and I just an awful person [TS]

  let's move on to the last book the [TS]

  Goblin Emperor by Catherine Addison it a [TS]

  book if you talk about expectations I [TS]

  had no expectations going in but very [TS]

  early on when you discover that this is [TS]

  a you know it's a fantasy novel and it's [TS]

  setting this elven realm and they're [TS]

  elves and goblins and there are you know [TS]

  their social hierarchies and there's [TS]

  histories of battles and things like [TS]

  that [TS]

  I thought I kind of felt like it there [TS]

  was a really nice setup here for what [TS]

  we've come to expect from a fantasy [TS]

  novel and i'll just say I [TS]

  was so delighted that none of that [TS]

  happened and that is this ended up being [TS]

  this this is a story about a character [TS]

  who ends up finding himself by quite by [TS]

  accident [TS]

  well accident quite quite quite [TS]

  unexpectedly let's put it that way as [TS]

  the Emperor of this entire kingdom the [TS]

  Empire whatever and and instead of it [TS]

  being like and then I mean there are [TS]

  assassination attempts in here but it's [TS]

  not like and then there was an [TS]

  assassination attempt and then the war [TS]

  and then there was a battle and all that [TS]

  instead it's really like how does this [TS]

  young person who is very bright but not [TS]

  well-educated navigate this incredibly [TS]

  complex set of politics in order to [TS]

  survive and find out who he wants to be [TS]

  and that's it that's what the book is [TS]

  and i loved it i really i really loved [TS]

  it i love being surprised by this book [TS]

  and I also just loved the book itself [TS]

  and that that's what it was and it was [TS]

  okay that this ended up being kind of [TS]

  how you know how is this kid gonna [TS]

  figure out how to have this job instead [TS]

  of armies clash and you know anything [TS]

  just it wasn't necessary that it was a [TS]

  totally different kind of book but i [TS]

  thought i thought was a I thought it was [TS]

  beautiful so I'll i loved it [TS]

  what did what did you all think he just [TS]

  wants to build a bridge [TS]

  he's just a bridge-builder let him build [TS]

  the print edition bridges are fun [TS]

  come on this is so different than her [TS]

  other novels I mean I read her novels as [TS]

  ceremony at who's the actual name of the [TS]

  author years ago and this is so [TS]

  different I mean that in terms of [TS]

  quality she's this piece yet she had [TS]

  health problems associated in writing [TS]

  for many years so this is actually a [TS]

  return to form for trooper I mean she [TS]

  should read a couple novels to with [TS]

  elizabeth bear and those had trailed off [TS]

  the wall because her health condition [TS]

  and so I was thinking okay so we're [TS]

  gonna get nice really nice dark fantasy [TS]

  right [TS]

  no because her other cells can get [TS]

  really dark and twisted and complicated [TS]

  politics and we have complicated [TS]

  politics here but it's a much smaller [TS]

  stories about about a kid was it [TS]

  becoming a pro by accident and [TS]

  eventually just building a bridge in [TS]

  trying to survive [TS]

  and I appreciate that because it's not a [TS]

  story about the the whole state of the [TS]

  kingdom of the world's at stake for [TS]

  announce it [TS]

  it's a smaller scale spoiler stakes [TS]

  story and we can have those and she [TS]

  executed it excellently I I mean about [TS]

  the only thing this thing then black [TS]

  this lack and was a map i butting in my [TS]

  own map [TS]

  I'mI'm a partisan i'm at parties in [TS]

  everyone knows everything is better with [TS]

  maps everything but it would be nice to [TS]

  get to know where some of these things [TS]

  were I saw online service she had like a [TS]

  have drawn half-assed map that she [TS]

  posted somewhere i would like to have a [TS]

  proper map map for this well because [TS]

  that's that's just part of my [TS]

  expectations advanced e-reader but yeah [TS]

  i was delighted this is was not what was [TS]

  not what as you said was it looked like [TS]

  it was going to be was good it was a [TS]

  much different [TS]

  warframe story and elegantly well-told [TS]

  or well III in general do not read that [TS]

  much fantasy because I just don't like [TS]

  it as much as science fiction so I went [TS]

  in expecting this be the weakest of all [TS]

  the reeds and I think it was purchased [TS]

  about the strongest of all the reads for [TS]

  many of the same reasons that you [TS]

  mentioned Jason like I was expecting [TS]

  okay guys going to become emperor and at [TS]

  some point there's going to be a big [TS]

  battle because somebody's gonna be it [TS]

  and you don't have to leave the troops [TS]

  in battle and we'll get killed everybody [TS]

  said no that doesn't happen you know [TS]

  he'll go on a quest because he's the [TS]

  Emperor he has to save the kingdom well [TS]

  that doesn't happen under the usual [TS]

  tropes happened it was sort of like last [TS]

  year when we read the Goblin in the [TS]

  general and they had that seen the idea [TS]

  that the one that the gin makes the [TS]

  other the map that's on the ceiling of [TS]

  the apartment you walk in and when the [TS]

  light hits the right way you see the the [TS]

  hills and valleys and everything you [TS]

  know this is that this same thing [TS]

  happened to me when I read this and [TS]

  everything with the bridge with a little [TS]

  model of the present so fascinated with [TS]

  the workmanship you know it'sit's it was [TS]

  seems like that that really captivated [TS]

  me and I mean that i had trouble with [TS]

  the names [TS]

  yeah the guys would be any audiobook [TS]

  because the do the words no no no I'm [TS]

  not it i as an audiobook and it didn't [TS]

  help [TS]

  no like what the hell were these people [TS]

  it's very complicated like I is that [TS]

  would be my one criticism as I felt like [TS]

  I like that you set up this whole world [TS]

  that seems foreign but I it actually got [TS]

  in my way all of these complicated [TS]

  proper names that were just so hard to [TS]

  keep track of and and even think about [TS]

  how you would pronounce them and I even [TS]

  knew Hungarian people so I love these [TS]

  names seem very Hungarian to me but [TS]

  still it was too many it was just there [TS]

  just to manage to put this society and [TS]

  they like the fact that he had different [TS]

  rooms for different audiences [TS]

  yeah you know different mean just living [TS]

  in the castle and trying to make friends [TS]

  that whole thing with the cards you know [TS]

  we can't be your friends because we have [TS]

  two cars jewelry in if we're friends we [TS]

  might not react as fast mean there's [TS]

  just so much that I enjoyed about this i [TS]

  like that Maya the the main character is [TS]

  a is smart like yes the be smart but not [TS]

  educated and you know is such a great [TS]

  thing to do because it would be very [TS]

  easy for him to be to be you know [TS]

  portrayed as being dumb or you know or [TS]

  or being like so impossibly smart that [TS]

  he can figure everything out right away [TS]

  and it's neither of those things is a [TS]

  person who is smart and trying to learn [TS]

  but there's too much to learn and not [TS]

  enough time to learn it and I think [TS]

  that's a really interesting place for [TS]

  the character to be asked questions and [TS]

  he learns ya NAA even tries to like you [TS]

  know hit the biggest enemy quote-unquote [TS]

  I think would be his cousin in this book [TS]

  and even tries to you know tries to [TS]

  reconcile tries to find something to do [TS]

  with him and whether the guy like likes [TS]

  it accepts it [TS]

  you know is up to him but might rise now [TS]

  hehe it is a was this is it is aunt or [TS]

  whatever is involved in the plot against [TS]

  him right he does like banish everybody [TS]

  he adopts basically the kids and takes [TS]

  care of them brings them into his home [TS]

  you know it's not like you know he [TS]

  slaughters everybody like in a typical [TS]

  game of Thrones episode or something [TS]

  it's a very different look at empire [TS]

  then the Empire the Raj yes yes doctor [TS]

  not a lefty and I have teeth at one [TS]

  stage there's tea though there is [TS]

  there's a breakfast Thursday theirs too [TS]

  yeah [TS]

  no sandwiches though so Jack whatever [TS]

  yeah yeah yeah I mean I overall I [TS]

  enjoyed it [TS]

  the thing that I had a lot of issue with [TS]

  was the second the character started [TS]

  doing the d and now and can stand what [TS]

  it's stuff which I suspect a lot of [TS]

  people that have an issue with that that [TS]

  just every time they started doing that [TS]

  i started rolling my eyes it's a the way [TS]

  the way they put it I mean it is sort of [TS]

  like what and like he does in the [TS]

  ancillary books which is issue is she's [TS]

  trying to get across language [TS]

  differences so the idea there is that [TS]

  they've got like in like in German or [TS]

  something they've got they've got like [TS]

  the formal in the informal and it's all [TS]

  about how you speak like they all speak [TS]

  plural when they're with the Emperor [TS]

  that's how you're supposed to do it and [TS]

  when you go to vm Val you're speaking [TS]

  down to somebody I finally figured that [TS]

  out nervously okay well this isn't just [TS]

  ridiculous now at least I understand why [TS]

  it because because it at first it was [TS]

  really in Congress it's like what why [TS]

  are you talking like this now but in the [TS]

  end I think that was what was intended [TS]

  as to she was trying to show off like [TS]

  like levels of you what are you talking [TS]

  down or up to somebody or they at your [TS]

  level with these different ways of [TS]

  addressing them because that's a [TS]

  temporary cares about that i guess i [TS]

  guess that could have been done better [TS]

  maybe a little more artfully that i [TS]

  could but i could buy that or at least [TS]

  made very clear from the start that [TS]

  that's what's happening because the [TS]

  second it happened I just by its journey [TS]

  and a lot of it i just i i hate when [TS]

  people use bowing can stand witnessed as [TS]

  other writing like Shakespeare and I'm [TS]

  like as not now let's not do that please [TS]

  yeah that also goes a little goes the [TS]

  names of she's very interested in [TS]

  language and its forms and how people [TS]

  use it and it's constructions and so and [TS]

  maybe sometimes it's a little [TS]

  off-putting with that pressure for the [TS]

  these thousand can send for you Jason [TS]

  pro and you are friends with with the [TS]

  name's Abby I mean she's got she's she's [TS]

  got a vision in our mind and maybe [TS]

  sometimes it goes a little too far [TS]

  I enjoyed it greatly I believe what skin [TS]

  in a magical world where I am awarding [TS]

  the nebulous of this in fact [TS]

  win the nebula because I just thought it [TS]

  was delightful i liked the main [TS]

  character I i will echo everything that [TS]

  everyone else said about how you know [TS]

  you go in reading inspecting okay well [TS]

  it's this you know this little upstart [TS]

  wasn't really enough for this kind of [TS]

  Forgotten kid that the the Emperor [TS]

  didn't want to have anything to do with [TS]

  and no one ever thought would be Emperor [TS]

  because they're through his three [TS]

  brothers and so clearly he's never going [TS]

  to become the Emperor and they all died [TS]

  there's no in a horrible airship [TS]

  accident i should say there by checking [TS]

  off an important box on the incomparable [TS]

  what are their Zeppelin's whoo [TS]

  Zeppelin's yes Zeppelin's tricep once in [TS]

  the compliment [TS]

  he's a footnote he's never intended to [TS]

  be anyone [TS]

  and in fact has been locked away [TS]

  somewhere being abused essentially yeah [TS]

  and i thought that that relationship was [TS]

  really interesting and how you know he's [TS]

  being raised quote-unquote by some kind [TS]

  of vague relatives / courtier and not [TS]

  very well and then suddenly the power [TS]

  dynamic shifts and he's the Emperor and [TS]

  now his uncle I guess was a wants to you [TS]

  know he's back in court and he's trying [TS]

  to curry favor and Mia is resisting just [TS]

  using all of his power to just punish [TS]

  this man for all the horrible things [TS]

  he's done to him and I just that was [TS]

  fascinating [TS]

  I like I think it's a good good trait in [TS]

  an emperor and I think this is the point [TS]

  of it obviously in the industry is to [TS]

  you can you can literally just command [TS]

  for people to be taken away and killed [TS]

  or locked up or somewhere he is it but [TS]

  his childhood was so awful that he [TS]

  fights against it at every step [TS]

  even with people who have done pretty [TS]

  awful things and I mean that that's a [TS]

  really fast way to to get some [TS]

  understanding of the decency of the [TS]

  character that that the kid that that my [TS]

  resists doing that but I thought it was [TS]

  really interesting especially with this [TS]

  one character who is just abused him for [TS]

  his entire life and he he tries very [TS]

  hard to get him away without like like [TS]

  doing to him what was done to him [TS]

  yeah other thoughts I i agree with scott [TS]

  by the way I i would i would [TS]

  my magical amulet with the Goblin [TS]

  temporary with my yeah there's my [TS]

  favorite to buy yep the Goblin / was my [TS]

  favorite followed closely by [TS]

  annihilation and then ancillary sort of [TS]

  had to write my top three nebula picks [TS]

  will be those three [TS]

  let's do more ranking Sean you're all [TS]

  wrong [TS]

  what do you want to wait don't tell us [TS]

  your rankings I annihilation at the top [TS]

  followed by three body problem ancillary [TS]

  sword than goblin Emperor interesting [TS]

  not not so into the god the reason that [TS]

  was really just got to you that pulls me [TS]

  out of almost any fantasy story went to [TS]

  unless unless it's like literally [TS]

  Shakespeare doing it in which case I'm [TS]

  like that's cool because elizabeth bear [TS]

  has done that bit where she's had [TS]

  Shakespeare actually say that these and [TS]

  thousands like yeah well if it's Jake [TS]

  we're doing it I'm cool other rankings [TS]

  Fred did you rank them I would uh tied [TS]

  for first was vandemere and this one [TS]

  second three-body third was and lucky [TS]

  all right for me and then other books [TS]

  were also listed yes now i get there was [TS]

  not a single book i disliked I enjoyed [TS]

  the mall is just that I felt these were [TS]

  better than the rest so no yeah there's [TS]

  only one but i actually actively [TS]

  disliked so i should say that it's got [TS]

  worried about you [TS]

  there were two books I actively decided [TS]

  I would be I would rank goblin Emperor [TS]

  annihilation three-body problem [TS]

  ancillary sword and then others the [TS]

  other others [TS]

  yes fair enough and for me [TS]

  yeah i would be goblin Emperor ancillary [TS]

  sword three body and and the other box [TS]

  other books would be below the half-up [TS]

  well I want to see where it is coming [TS]

  home and annihilation or not probably i [TS]

  would probably put an Iowa shin next [TS]

  only because it is so well written [TS]

  even though ultimately my feelings about [TS]

  I i have this occasion with boot books [TS]

  and movies where I where I think about [TS]

  the book a lot or the movie and I and [TS]

  III appreciate that it made me really [TS]

  think about it [TS]

  and then I say ne and I don't think it [TS]

  worked I you know I think it was a [TS]

  failure i didn't like it and and those [TS]

  are better than the ones that I'm just [TS]

  like oh come on this isn't very good and [TS]

  so I recognize even though i ended up [TS]

  not kind of not liking it I recognize [TS]

  the value in it and that why i [TS]

  understand why other people would like [TS]

  it a lot more so i probably better [TS]

  ranking i'd probably put it above trial [TS]

  by fire and then i gotta put poor old [TS]

  Jack leeteuk down at the bottom even [TS]

  though i like so many of those books [TS]

  because I it's just not it's not very [TS]

  good night I and i would say that did [TS]

  that I have issues with trial by fire [TS]

  and coming home but I read them both [TS]

  without much trouble and I actually [TS]

  think that like trial by fire my [TS]

  problems are very much like not that I [TS]

  didn't like the book but I felt like it [TS]

  kind of went on too long and it was just [TS]

  kind of too much in that story and it [TS]

  could have could have moved a lot faster [TS]

  and I think would have been better for [TS]

  it but not that I I you know one of the [TS]

  throw it out the window or anything like [TS]

  that which since i read on my Kindle [TS]

  would be a problem by the way so he can [TS]

  go huh yeah I had copied onto a memory [TS]

  stick and then throw that out the window [TS]

  or something really nice so I have a [TS]

  question for the the folks who red jack [TS]

  mcdevitt and like it because i read [TS]

  coming home and why didn't like it i [TS]

  thought these are characters that I [TS]

  could picture in a story that i would [TS]

  like so what for someone who is only [TS]

  read coming home what other jack [TS]

  mcdevitt book should I read that will [TS]

  make me happy [TS]

  seeker is much better job i made me what [TS]

  you think about giving him the one of [TS]

  the Priscilla novel yeah i think that i [TS]

  think the Priscilla Hutchins novels are [TS]

  better than Alex Benedict every um the [TS]

  first one of those edges of God which is [TS]

  pretty good i really like deep six [TS]

  because it is as crazy high stakes space [TS]

  adventure as you're ever going to get [TS]

  because they're literally on a planet [TS]

  that is about to be hit like swallowed [TS]

  whole by a rogue gas giant that's just [TS]

  passing through the system so they so [TS]

  they literally land on this planet and [TS]

  find evidence of a previous [TS]

  extraterrestrial civilization there but [TS]

  there's this huge ticking clock that [TS]

  they can't do anything about which is it [TS]

  up planets gonna hit it and maybe that's [TS]

  just so outrageous and yet i really like [TS]

  a memorable and interesting and and so I [TS]

  you know [TS]

  those books the Priscilla Hodgins books [TS]

  I'd say our are there i think they're [TS]

  all but always better like then the [TS]

  comfortable Alex Benedict book but [TS]

  seekers a good Alex panic but I also [TS]

  have a weak spot friends from shorts [TS]

  which is neither Jew which is nice not [TS]

  nice and alone worries [TS]

  yes and a lot same with Hercules text [TS]

  moonfall those are both independence [TS]

  yeah so does even enter read through [TS]

  them without needing to note series race [TS]

  series or anything else that we should [TS]

  mention before we go I feel like we've [TS]

  you know it's fun i find it fun it is a [TS]

  lot of you know assigned reading in a [TS]

  way we did a podcast about that but I i [TS]

  did I you know I enjoy reading me it's [TS]

  nice having a short list to read from it [TS]

  is it can't be all you read me year but [TS]

  it is kind of nice to have somebody say [TS]

  hey we think these six books are worth [TS]

  reading you should read those I i enjoy [TS]

  doing that it makes us but it makes us [TS]

  to quote up the coochie pocket as part [TS]

  of the science-fiction conversation to [TS]

  disengage with books which are nominated [TS]

  yeah and and think about them and [TS]

  somebody obviously thinks that they're [TS]

  valuable and and that that's a nice [TS]

  endorsement to be to say alright well [TS]

  and you might read something you [TS]

  wouldn't normally i don't i'm not sure I [TS]

  would've ever I i know i would never [TS]

  read the Goblin Emperor ever because I'm [TS]

  not a fantasy reader if it had been [TS]

  nominated and I really loved it so that [TS]

  take up so i'm a dummy and I should i [TS]

  guess i should read more fantasy so I [TS]

  guess I should start on that and three [TS]

  body problem i read a lot about but I [TS]

  I'm not sure when i would have never [TS]

  gotten to written got into it and [TS]

  instead I got to read that was fun [TS]

  so I hope you guys enjoyed the assigned [TS]

  reading two more idea of it most of it [TS]

  yeah enough networks five out of the six [TS]

  i enjoyed for different reasons one of [TS]

  them i did not that's not a bad batting [TS]

  average last year I feel like we're very [TS]

  lucky to have eight that were all pretty [TS]

  decent not yes got em all right well so [TS]

  that there we are we have we have [TS]

  reached the end we've covered these [TS]

  books are you can look on the internet [TS]

  and find out which one won the award [TS]

  yes we'll leave that your local internet [TS]

  yeah we'll leave that as an exercise for [TS]

  the listener or I'll dump in a thing [TS]

  here that says hello this is jason for [TS]

  the future [TS]

  the winner of the nebula award for best [TS]

  novel was aa annihilation that was me [TS]

  from the future right there [TS]

  alright i would like to thank my my my [TS]

  reading guests for joining us for cash [TS]

  thank you so much for being back on and [TS]

  also for listening for a billion [TS]

  episodes as you have no thank you and i [TS]

  invite everyone over to the three [TS]

  horsemen and to get a different view on [TS]

  science fiction [TS]

  you should check it out Palmer skippy [TS]

  and fanti and SF signal to a little bit [TS]

  right and i've only listened to a [TS]

  million a billion episode so i guess and [TS]

  fret as I said last year's friends fault [TS]

  i started listening to in kabul in the [TS]

  first place so thanks Brad thank fred [TS]

  fred is like the Johnny Appleseed he's [TS]

  like patient zero of the incomparable he [TS]

  was there so early and has spread our [TS]

  disease far and wide [TS]

  Sean Dukes give you a fancy and of [TS]

  course your new movie podcast totally [TS]

  pretentious thank you for being here [TS]

  absolutely thank you see we're plugging [TS]

  things and it's got multi host of random [TS]

  track [TS]

  thank you for being here thank you for [TS]

  everything I'm excited to be on an [TS]

  uncomfortable episode i feel like i [TS]

  haven't been uncomfortable for a long [TS]

  time [TS]

  well we'll have to rectify that and I [TS]

  know all my fan were collaborating so [TS]

  yes and maybe you could eat a sandwich [TS]

  and read a good jack mcdevitt novel some [TS]

  time until then thanks to everybody out [TS]

  there hope you got some good book ideas [TS]

  in this episode we will see you next [TS]

  week [TS]

  and now the news brought to you by [TS]

  chocolate coffee the only coffee with [TS]

  that extra special is an ingredient more [TS]

  coffee [TS]

  choco happened 378 coffee anymore that's [TS]

  the incomparable radio theatre of the [TS]

  air coming later this year to a podcast [TS]

  playing near you but visit the [TS]

  incomparable calm / radio now for a [TS]

  special live episode [TS]