Review: Winter Tide

Winter Tide Winter Tide by Ruthanna Emrys
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Ruthanna Emrys has achieved something commendable in this novel- she has both redeemed and fully claimed the Lovecraft legacy. I've never been a Lovecraft fan, in part because I'm not much for horror fiction, but also Lovecraft's work has overt racist themes and his anti-science writing is clearly going to leave a reader like me cold. Emrys has seized his world of Innsmouth and made it her own. She has redeemed it and has rather brilliantly intertwined the mass internment of Japanese-American citizens during World War II with the internment of the Deep Ones' human-formed young. Who are the monsters in Emrys' world? They are the protagonists of this tale. As the central character Aprha Marsh's adoptive Japanese sister Neko says, "We're all monsters here." Emrys' has managed to subvert the worst aspects of Lovecraft's work while spinning his cosmic horror into a wonderful story. As I read this book to finalize my nominations for the Hugo Awards, I kept asking myself why I hadn't read it sooner! I'm looking forward to the forthcoming sequel, Deep Roots.

Winter Tide builds upon a previous novelette about Aphra, titled "The Litany of Earth" and it is easiest for the reader to enter the Innsmouth Legacy series with that story.

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