Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Club #58


For July’s book club meeting we’ll be discussing Something More Than Night by Ian Tregillis. Boldly described as “a Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler inspired murder mystery set in Thomas Aquinas’s vision of Heaven. It’s a noir detective story starring fallen angels, the heavenly choir, nightclub stigmatics, a priest with a dirty secret, a femme fatale, and the Voice of God.”

“Somebody has murdered the angel Gabriel. Worse, the Jericho Trumpet has gone missing, putting Heaven on the brink of a truly cosmic crisis. But the twisty plot that unfolds from the murder investigation leads to something much bigger: a con job one billion years in the making.”

A Kirkus Reviews Best Fiction Book of 2013, it’s been lauded for its evocation of the hardboiled detective/noir genre right alongside beautiful descriptions of meta and quantum physics.

What we discussed at the last book club meeting:

For June’s book club meeting we discussed The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N. K. Jemisin. Yeine Darr is an outcast from the barbarian north, unexpectedly named an heiress to the king. But the throne of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms is not easily won.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms has been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula, Crawford, Gemmell, Tiptree and World Fantasy awards.

Most of us loved parts of this book and disliked other parts: it had lush descriptions but then sometimes the explanation of a facial expression fell flat. One attendee suggested this might be an editing problem more than anything else. Great concepts and worldbuilding, but fell prey to “plucky hero in over their head who finds out s/he’s special” syndrome.

Many of us continued reading the rest of the series, though, which suggests we enjoyed the ride. And in the acknowledgements of the final book, we found: “I need to thank you. … A writer needs readers who will find other readers… readers who will select her work for their monthly book club meetings and discuss it over tea and cake.” And we’re happy to have served as such in this instance, and we’re also happy to celebrate the author’s great recent Guest of Honor speech at Wiscon.

When: Monday, July 14th, 2014 — 6:30pm-7:30pm

Where: Filter Cafe 1373-75 N Milwaukee Ave Chicago, IL

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