I’m not much of one for “reviewing” the work of other authors. It just makes me uncomfortable.
To me, reviewing something carries the connotation of passing judgment upon it. Meanwhile, I was raised on “if you can’t find anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Frankly, I’m so strapped for time these days that if I don’t really like something, or if it’s bothering me enough that I’d discuss it as a weak point in a review, I’ll just move on to something else.
But back when I was in high school I used to pester my best friend with my “you’ve just got to read this” list. And I’ve realized I’m perfectly happy to do that now, for the entire Internet.
Or at least, whatever small portion of the Internet that winds up on my website.
So here’s something you’ve just got to read. Pip Ballantine’s Phoenix Rising. You can find her books, and her partner’s books, and a mess of short stories here.
As I am working on an epic steampunk novel right now I had it on my list to sit down and read a bit more of the genre. This is the novel I picked up. The characters are charming. I love the Angel of Destruction! Hee. The story is intriguing. She uses a lot of classic tropes, but it just works.
Talk about diversity, too. The male lead and female lead are equally strong and equally matched. They are opposites in nearly every way, though sometimes I think they’re more alike than they’d admit. I also see her bringing in other nationalities, such as an agent from India who we’ve run into in the second book. It all flows naturally. Her books also matter. The adventure is a romp, the banter is high–and the social criticism is eerily relevant.
Get it, read it. You’ll have a blast.