Posts in category 'books'

  • Review: Monstrous Regiment

    Review of Monstrous Regiment (Discworld #31.0) by Terry Pratchett (9780060013165)★★★★★ #books (

    War has come to Discworld ... again.

    And, to no one's great surprise, the conflict centers around the small, arrogantly fundamentalist duchy of Borogravia, which has long prided itself on its unrelenting aggressiveness. A year ago, Polly Perks's brother marched off to battle, and Polly's willing to resort to drastic measures to find him. So she cuts off her hair, dons masculine garb, and -- aided by a well-placed pair of socks -- sets out to join this man's army. Since a nation in such dire need of cannon fodder can't afford to be too picky, Polly is eagerly welcomed into the fighting fold—along with a vampire, a troll, an Igor, a religious fanatic, and two uncommonly close "friends." It would appear that Polly "Ozzer" Perks isn't the only grunt with a secret. But duty calls, the battlefield beckons. And now is the time for all good ... er ... "men" to come to the aid of their country.

    “We are a proud country.” “What are you proud of?” It came swiftly, like a blow, and Polly realized how wars happened. … We have our pride. And that’s what we’re proud of. We’re proud of being proud…

    In a few words, Terry Pratchett shows us why fiction and satire are so vital and powerful.

    Next to Night Watch and Small Gods, Monstrous Regiment is now one of my favourite Discworld novels. Tackling issues of gender equality, the insanity of war, and the dangers of blind nationalism, here Pratchett is, in my opinion, at his more powerful and his most poignant.

    Continue reading...
  • Review: Babylon's Ashes

    Review of Babylon's Ashes (The Expanse #6.0) by James S. A. Corey (9780316217637)★★★ #books (

    A revolution brewing for generations has begun in fire. It will end in blood.

    The Free Navy - a violent group of Belters in black-market military ships - has crippled the Earth and begun a campaign of piracy and violence among the outer planets. The colony ships heading for the thousand new worlds on the far side of the alien ring gates are easy prey, and no single navy remains strong enough to protect them.
    James Holden and his crew know the strengths and weaknesses of this new force better than anyone. Outnumbered and outgunned, the embattled remnants of the old political powers call on the Rocinante for a desperate mission to reach Medina Station at the heart of the gate network. 

    But the new alliances are as flawed as the old, and the struggle for power has only just begun.

    Babylon's Ashes is a breakneck science fiction adventure following the bestselling Nemesis Games.

    Slow. Decent ending, but the journey wasn’t worth the effort.