Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I just... I honestly just don't know where to begin.
Gideon Nav is a swordswoman who is part of the order of the Ninth House. Well, by part of, I mean she's an indentured servant to. The order includes necromancers, including the resplendent Harrowhawk. Gideon has tried to escape her House eighty-seven times. And now, she is going to serve as a cavalier to Harrow as she competes in trials set by the Emperor: as Harrow seeks glory, Gideon seeks her freedom. This is the plan. This is probably a terrible plan. Especially since Gideon and Harrow are like... gasoline and a blowtorch? And from this explosive partnership, we have the makings of a classic Greek tragedy overlaid onto... a space opera. Of sorts.
This book reminds me of the feeling I had the first time I read Yoon Ha Lee. Complete disorientation and fascination, as I am immersed in a complex world without so much as a guidebook. (Well, I do have a dramatis personae list, at least. There's that.) Awe at the imagination, the strangeness, the sheer wit of the world-building. By the time I was a few chapters in, I was totally hooked because of the dynamic between Gideon (Griddle) and Harrow (who will have her own book next year) and wondering how this would play out. It's quite a tale.
I can honestly say it's like nothing I've ever read and I want more of it. I am looking forward to Harrow the Ninth.
I've purchased the audiobook, narrated by Moira Quirk, to read/listen to it again.
I received an Advanced Review Copy from Tor.com in exchange for an honest review.
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