Tag Archives: author: yoon ha lee

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

Ninefox Gambit

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

Series: The Machineries of Empire, Book 1
Published by:
 Solaris Books on June 14, 2016
Rating: 3 stars (★★★☆☆)

Captain Kel Cheris has been afforded an opportunity to redeem herself in the eyes of Kel Command. But the task before her, recapturing the Fortress of Scattered Needles from heretics, will not be easy. So she finds herself partnering (in a sense) with Shuos Jedeo, an undead tactician who reportedly went mad while he was alive–and on a madness-inspired murder spree. But what Jedeo brings to the mission may be exactly what Cheris needs to succeed. She just needs to figure out how much she can trust Jedeo–and how to make use of his expertise without letting him take over…

An epic space adventure if there ever was one. And the world that Yoon Ha Lee has created here is one that is quite intriguing. There is honestly a lot to keep track of, especially at first, but I would say it’s manageable for most astute readers. And it is a great examination of the question of taking risks, and determining which of those risks are necessary in order to succeed. Is it worth introducing more danger to an already dangerous situation on the chance that it may be the only way to get through to the other side?

The Queen’s Aviary by Yoon Ha Lee

Title: The Queen’s Aviary
Author: Yoon Ha Lee
Published: January 30, 2015
Pages: 3
Publisher: Daily Science Fiction
Publisher Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

The raven spoke in a voice like storms and stars falling. “The royal line has always kept birds by its side,” it said, “but a bird will be your death. Free us and walk unfettered by fear.”

When the princess became queen at fifteen upon the death of her mother, the ravens gave her her reign-prophecy.  And it was one that was unexpectedly ominous and impossible.  The birds had been a part of palace life for generations, and it was hardly her place to be rid of something that was so key to the identity of the royal family.  But as with all prophecies, one must be very clever to avoid them as often it is in attempting to outwit a prophecy that it finds itself fulfilled.

I’ve found myself appreciating some of the darker fantasy stories lately, so this one was just right on the day I read it.  Yoon Ha Lee is a relatively new author to me, but everything I’ve read so far has been enjoyable.  I’ve a feeling she is one to watch.

The Bonedrake’s Penance by Yoon Ha Lee

Title: The Bonedrake’s Penance
Author: Yoon Ha Lee
Published: March 20, 2014
Pages: 40
Publisher: Beneath Ceaseless Skies
Publisher Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

Talk about a story that makes you think. Even a while after I’ve read this, I immediately find myself going back to the issues this story raised for me when I first finished it. Can one truly remain neutral in conflict? Is a decision to remain neutral an amoral decision or is it a conscious choice that brings culpability for the final outcome to the “neutral” party? And then there are the issues of parenting and nurturing. What does it mean to be a parent? How does a parent’s sense of morality impact those of their children? And what if something like the fortress actually existed?

This is the kind of speculative fiction I enjoy. There’s a world here that is different enough to truly stand out, but not different in ways that make it completely outside the realm of future possibility. The fiction that raises the questions of morality, especially when it comes to technology and its implications and applications.