So I didn’t get on with The Stars are Legion, so much so that I can’t even remember what it was about (even the review doesn’t help). But anyway, I got on with this one much better. It’s less weird, though it’s all time travel-y and you have to piece things together as you go.
Nuns in space! What’s not to love?
In short, the plot revolves around Mahit, from Lsel station. She is summoned by the Empire, after the former ambassador mysteriously died. But everything becomes complicated very quickly and Mahit must survive on her wits and try to keep her station safe from the Empire.
This whopping great brick of a novel (700 pages and change) follows the members of the Athena club on an adventure to Europe to rescue Lucinda Van Helsing, daughter of the famous Dr Van Helsing.
Just like “A Dead Djinn in Cairo”, this short story is utterly delightful. It takes place in the same universe, turn of the century Cairo, but one inhabited by djinns and other mythic and supernatural beings.
I can see why lots of people love this book. It’s like a Russian Doll of a story, all wrapped up in flowery and beautiful language. But in some respects, that’s all it is. So it’s fine, but I’m not sure what all the fuss was about.
Astounding is a history of the golden age of science fiction, specifically focussed on John W. Campbell Jr., L. Ron Hubbard, Robert A. Heinlein and Isaac Asimov. And it is quite frankly, bloody brilliant.