Mini Reviews Part Two – November 2021

I have a few more for you!

Thanks to the mentioned publishers for any free copies in exchange for my honest reviews

YOU FEEL IT JUST BELOW THE RIBS – Jeffrey Cranor and Janina Matthewson (Released November 16th, 2021 – Thanks to Harper Perennial for the copy!)

A fictional autobiography in an alternate twentieth century that chronicles one woman’s unusual life, including the price she pays to survive and the cost her choices hold for the society she is trying to save.

Born at the end of the old world, Miriam grows up during The Great Reckoning, a sprawling, decades-long war that nearly decimates humanity and strips her of friends and family. Devastated by grief and loneliness, she emotionally exiles herself, avoiding relationships or allegiances, and throws herself into her work—disengagement that serves her when the war finally ends, and The New Society arises.

To ensure a lasting peace, The New Society forbids anything that may cause tribal loyalties, including traditional families. Suddenly, everyone must live as Miriam has chosen to—disconnected and unattached. A researcher at heart, Miriam becomes involved in implementing this detachment process. She does not know it is the beginning of a darkly sinister program that will transform this new world and the lives of everyone in it. Eventually, the harmful effects of her research become too much for Miriam, and she devises a secret plan to destroy the system from within, endangering her own life.

But is her “confession” honest—or is it a fabrication riddled with lies meant to conceal the truth?

My Thoughts: 3/5 stars

This was an interesting book. The writing was incredible and sucked me in instantly but I felt a little lost and confused at times. I think its the dystopian genre for me, it’s always hit or miss whenever I read them. There were mentions in the book that this takes place in the world of the author’s podcast, and I think that could be why this was more difficult for me to follow. I liked the format with the autobiographical feel and the footnotes.

FLOWERS FOR THE SEA – BY Zin E Rocklyn (Released October 19th, 2021 – Thanks to Tordotcom for the copy!)

Flowers for the Sea is a dark, dazzling debut novella that reads like Rosemary’s Baby by way of Octavia E. Butler.

We are a people who do not forget.Survivors from a flooded kingdom struggle alone on an ark. Resources are scant, and ravenous beasts circle. Their fangs are sharp.Among the refugees is Iraxi: ostracized, despised, and a commoner who refused a prince, she’s pregnant with a child that might be more than human. Her fate may be darker and more powerful than she can imagine.

Zin E. Rocklyn’s extraordinary debut is a lush, gothic fantasy about the prices we pay and the vengeance we seek.

COMFORT ME WITH APPLES – Catherynne M. Valente (Released November 9th, 2021 – Thanks to Tordotcom for the copy!)

Sophia was made for him. Her perfect husband. She can feel it in her bones. He is perfect. Their home together in Arcadia Gardens is perfect. Everything is perfect.

It’s just that he’s away so much. So often. He works so hard. She misses him. And he misses her. He says he does, so it must be true. He is the perfect husband and everything is perfect.

But sometimes Sophia wonders about things. Strange things. Dark things. The look on her husband’s face when he comes back from a long business trip. The questions he will not answer. The locked basement she is never allowed to enter. And whenever she asks the neighbors, they can’t quite meet her gaze…But everything is perfect. Isn’t it? 

My Thoughts:

FLOWERS FOR THE SEA: 4/5 stars

COMFORT ME WITH APPLES: 3.5/5 stars

Both of these short stories really pack a punch in such a small amount of time, they’re both written beautifully and it just had me mesmerized, both are very unique and kept me thinking after finishing, and now I have two new authors to keep an eye out for!

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