Ahoy there me mateys! Here be reviews of two tor.com novellas that I read recently (click on titles to add to yer Goodreads Ports for Plunder List):
This story was lovely and follows a person named Atuale who leaves her life in the sea to live on the land with her beloved. A plague comes to her husband’s people and Atuale is determined to find a cure, even if it means having to ask the people she left behind for help and also potentially alienating those she hopes to save.
I enjoyed how this novella had the feel of a fairytale but with sci-fi elements instead. I loved the mods, the gender shifting, the other worlds, and the world building. I loved how the people could have been human-hybrids but also could have maybe been from somewhere else. But above all I loved the tantalizing hints of Atuale’s backstory and her relationship both past and present with her old best friend Yanja. I could certainly read other things set in this world. Arrr!
“An anchor’s a burden for those who have a destination to make.”
“But it’s a blessing in a storm.”
― Aimee Ogden, Sun-Daughters, Sea-Daughters
This was fascinating even if not a whole lot ended up explained at the end. I loved the main character, Sankofa, who digs a meteor “seed” out of the garden and gains the power of giving death by glowing green and giving out electric sparks. It is not a gift I would wish on anyone.
This story felt like a folktale but had a lot of sci-fi elements. I loved this blend but I admit that, in general, I am fan of the author’s writing style. I felt this was a fantastic character study with lush world building where I was emotionally connected to Sankofa’s every move. However, Sankofa’s journey through Ghana is unpleasant at times and even Sankofa herself is not always likeable.
I thought the audio book narrator, Adjoa Andoh, was wonderful and I am very glad to have listened to this one. Recommended for sure. Arrr!
“Why did you call me over?” Sankofa asked. The woman crossed her arms over her chest, inspecting Sankofa as if she were the daughter of her best friend. “I like to look into the eyes of hurricanes,” she said.”