Aliette de Bodard’s THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is out tomorrow!


Aliette de Bodard‘s highly-anticipated new masterpiece, THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is out today! Published by Gollancz in the UK (above), and JABberwocky in North America (below). Here’s the synopsis…

Xích Si: bot maker, data analyst, mother, scavenger. But those days are over now-her ship has just been captured by the Red Banner pirate fleet, famous for their double-dealing and cruelty. Xích Si expects to be tortured to death-only for the pirates’ enigmatic leader, Rice Fish, to arrive with a different and shocking proposition: an arranged marriage between Xích Si and herself.

Rice Fish: sentient ship, leader of the infamous Red Banner pirate fleet, wife of the Red Scholar. Or at least, she was the latter before her wife died under suspicious circumstances. Now isolated and alone, Rice Fish wants Xích Si’s help to find out who struck against them and why. Marrying Xích Si means Rice Fish can offer Xích Si protection, in exchange for Xích Si’s technical fluency: a business arrangement with nothing more to it.

But as the investigation goes on, Rice Fish and Xích Si find themselves falling for each other. As the interstellar war against piracy intensifies and the five fleets start fighting each other, they will have to make a stand-and to decide what kind of future they have together…

An exciting space opera and a beautiful romance, from an exceptional SF author.

The UK cover is by Alyssa Winans; and the North American cover is by Raven.

The novel has been generating a lot of pre-publication excitement among readers and authors. Here are just a few of the early reactions to the novel…

‘A read-in-one-sitting novel with a beautifully-realized setting amid a complex examination of power and consequences, all intertwined with an intense and gripping romance.’Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is a fizzingly inventive space opera, quite unlike anything I’ve encountered before, and told with style, grace, and a big dose of heart. SF is lucky to have Aliette de Bodard.’ — Alastair Reynolds

‘Confident, sexy, and touching – THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “star-crossed lovers”!’ — Max Gladstone

‘Pirates, politics, sentient ships and unlikely romance all collide in Aliette de Bodard’s sapphic space opera THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE… With more tense political and social manoeuvring than rip-roaring action, events progress at a pace that maintains momentum while allowing plenty of time to revel in the texture and wonder of this rich, fascinating setting… With a unique world, a thought-provoking plot and a fragile, achingly believable relationship forming against the odds in the midst of rampant inequality and ever-present danger, this is a perfect novel for readers wanting emotional complexity, warmth and heartache in their space opera.’ — BSFA

‘What made this truly stand out to me was Aliette’s writing… Aliette’s prose is outstanding. It is descriptive and evocative without being overwrought, it is witty and full of emotion. Every character, every scene comes to life immediately and plastically, drawing the reader into this world of space pirates, family biological and found and relationships of all sorts. It is at times delicate, and at other times matter of fact and then again it will make you laugh out loud with dry wit. The characters’ maturity makes them stand out in a market saturated with coming-of-age stories across young adult and adult publishing, and it is a true breath of fresh air to read about protagonists coming into their story after a life well-lived, with attachments and history, knowing who they are and what they want. I could not recommend THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE more.’ — Grimdark Magazine

‘[A]n intriguing, compelling character study that’s gentle on the face of things and deeply powerful beneath the surface.’ — Track of Words

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is a quiet, intimate novel, its focus on the personal as driving force for the plot. It’s a book about love, over and above everything else: familial love, romantic love, and love for a community that doesn’t always love you back. And alongside that love, it’s also a book about hope.’Reads Rainbow

Aliette’s previous novels include the award-winning and acclaimed Dominion of the Fallen novels, published by Gollancz in the UK, and Roc Books (#1-2) and JABberwocky (#3) in North America.

The Dragons & Blades series, also set in the same world as the Dominion of the Fallen novels, are published by JABberwocky.

Aliette de Bodard’s THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE it out Next Week!


Aliette de Bodard‘s latest masterpiece, THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is due out next week! To be published by Gollancz in the UK, and JABberwocky in North America, here’s the synopsis…

Xích Si: bot maker, data analyst, mother, scavenger. But those days are over now-her ship has just been captured by the Red Banner pirate fleet, famous for their double-dealing and cruelty. Xích Si expects to be tortured to death-only for the pirates’ enigmatic leader, Rice Fish, to arrive with a different and shocking proposition: an arranged marriage between Xích Si and herself.

Rice Fish: sentient ship, leader of the infamous Red Banner pirate fleet, wife of the Red Scholar. Or at least, she was the latter before her wife died under suspicious circumstances. Now isolated and alone, Rice Fish wants Xích Si’s help to find out who struck against them and why. Marrying Xích Si means Rice Fish can offer Xích Si protection, in exchange for Xích Si’s technical fluency: a business arrangement with nothing more to it.

But as the investigation goes on, Rice Fish and Xích Si find themselves falling for each other. As the interstellar war against piracy intensifies and the five fleets start fighting each other, they will have to make a stand-and to decide what kind of future they have together…

An exciting space opera and a beautiful romance, from an exceptional SF author.

The UK cover (top) is by Alyssa Winans; and the North American cover (above) is by Raven, who also did the covers for Aliette’s Dragons & Blades duology (also published by JABberwocky).

Here are some early reactions to the novel…

‘A read-in-one-sitting novel with a beautifully-realized setting amid a complex examination of power and consequences, all intertwined with an intense and gripping romance.’Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun

‘Pirates, politics, sentient ships and unlikely romance all collide in Aliette de Bodard’s sapphic space opera THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE… With more tense political and social manoeuvring than rip-roaring action, events progress at a pace that maintains momentum while allowing plenty of time to revel in the texture and wonder of this rich, fascinating setting… With a unique world, a thought-provoking plot and a fragile, achingly believable relationship forming against the odds in the midst of rampant inequality and ever-present danger, this is a perfect novel for readers wanting emotional complexity, warmth and heartache in their space opera.’ — BSFA

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is a fizzingly inventive space opera, quite unlike anything I’ve encountered before, and told with style, grace, and a big dose of heart. SF is lucky to have Aliette de Bodard.’ — Alastair Reynolds

‘What made this truly stand out to me was Aliette’s writing… Aliette’s prose is outstanding. It is descriptive and evocative without being overwrought, it is witty and full of emotion. Every character, every scene comes to life immediately and plastically, drawing the reader into this world of space pirates, family biological and found and relationships of all sorts. It is at times delicate, and at other times matter of fact and then again it will make you laugh out loud with dry wit. The characters’ maturity makes them stand out in a market saturated with coming-of-age stories across young adult and adult publishing, and it is a true breath of fresh air to read about protagonists coming into their story after a life well-lived, with attachments and history, knowing who they are and what they want. I could not recommend THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE more.’ — Grimdark Magazine

‘Confident, sexy, and touching – THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “star-crossed lovers”!’ — Max Gladstone

‘[A]n intriguing, compelling character study that’s gentle on the face of things and deeply powerful beneath the surface.’ — Track of Words

‘Space battles! Arranged marriage! Politics and pirates! Aliette de Bodard has a knack for concocting the most glittery and delicious candy-shell of space opera, and then filling it with a bittersweet romance between two fractured people trying to hold on to their ideals. Every new book of hers instantly becomes my favourite book of hers, and this was no exception.’Freya Marske, author of international bestseller A Marvellous Light

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is a quiet, intimate novel, its focus on the personal as driving force for the plot. It’s a book about love, over and above everything else: familial love, romantic love, and love for a community that doesn’t always love you back. And alongside that love, it’s also a book about hope.’Reads Rainbow

Aliette’s previous novels include the award-winning and acclaimed Dominion of the Fallen novels, published by Gollancz in the UK, and Roc Books (#1-2) and JABberwocky (#3) in North America.

The aforementioned Dragons & Blades series is set in the same world as the Dominion of the Fallen novels.

Aliette de Bodard’s HISTORIAS DE XUYA is Out Now!


Today, Red Key Books publish HISTORIAS DE XUYA, a Spanish collection of Aliette de Bodard‘s Xuya novellas LA MAESTRA DEL TÉ Y LA INVESTIGADORA (THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE) and SEVEN OF INFINITIES!

La maestra del té y la investigadora + Seven of Infinities, de Aliette de Bodard

Dos novelas cortas de la afamada escritora Aliette de Bodard llegan juntas en unos meses: La maestra del té y la investigadora y Seven of infinities.

Son dos novelas muy reconocidas y valoradas, con las que Aliette nos abre la puerta de manera magistral a su Universo Xuya. Ciencia ficción, investigación, un futuro alternativo, sugerentes ideas, una trama elaborada… Pocos adjetivos son para estas dos obras. Hablaremos de ellas más adelante. Pero si queréis ir conociendo a esta autora y a su obra, os invitamos a pasaros por el programa en el que Leticia Lara, quien podemos considerar la entrevistadora oficial de Aliette de Bodard en España, nos acompaña en nuestro programa vigésimo quinto para ilustrarnos sobre ella.

If you’d like to learn more about the books, check out an episode of the Red Key Books podcast, here.

Both THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE and SEVEN OF INFINITIES are available in English, published by Subterranean Press and JABberwocky. Here’s the synopsis for THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE, which won the British Fantasy and Nebula Awards for Best Novella (2019)…

Once, the mindship known as The Shadow’s Child was a military transport. Once, she leapt effortlessly between stars and planets, carrying troops and crew for a war that tore the Empire apart. Until an ambush killed her crew and left her wounded and broken.

Now the war is over, and The Shadow’s Child, surviving against all odds, has run away. Discharged and struggling to make a living, she has no plans to go back into space. Until the abrasive and arrogant scholar Long Chau comes to see her. Long Chau wants to retrieve a corpse for her scientific studies: a simple enough, well-paid assignment.

But when the corpse they find turns out to have been murdered, the simple assignment becomes a vast and tangled investigation, inexorably leading back to the past–and, once again, to that unbearable void where The Shadow’s Child almost lost both sanity and life…

And the synopsis for SEVEN OF INFINITIES, which was a finalist for the Locus Best Novella Award (2021)…

On a string of orbitals called the Scattered Pearls Belt lives Sunless Woods—sentient spaceship, master of disguise, and master thief who chafes against the obscurity that comes with her retirement. There, too, lives Vân, a poor scholar with little confidence but plenty of heart, and whose income comes from tutoring a wealthy student.

Their lives are turned upside down when Vân finds a corpse in her student’s quarters and Sunless Woods, intrigued by Vân’s sense of justice, offers her help. Scholar and spaceship must chase the mystery around the empire’s forgotten edge: from rundown teahouses to ascetic havens, and even in the wreck of a spaceship—and all the while, they begin to fall for each other in earnest. But the secrets they’ve kept from each other are large and devastating—will they and their love survive the revelations?

Coming Soon: North American Edition of Aliette de Bodard’s THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE!


A little while ago, Gollancz unveiled the UK cover of Aliette de Bodard‘s latest science fiction masterpiece: THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE. Today, we can share with you the North American cover! The striking cover is by Raven, and the book is due to be published by JABberwocky, here’s the synopsis…

A rich space opera and an intensely soft romance

When tech scavenger Xích Si is captured and imprisoned by the infamous pirates of the Red Banner, she expects to be tortured or killed. Instead, their leader, Rice Fish, makes Xích Si an utterly incredible proposition: an offer of marriage.

Both have their reasons for this arrangement: Xích Si needs protection; Rice Fish, a sentient spaceship, needs a technical expert to investigate the death of her first wife, the Red Scholar. That’s all there is to it.

But as the interstellar war against piracy rages on and their own investigation reaches a dire conclusion, the two of them discover that their arrangement has evolved into something much less business-focused and more personal… and tender. And maybe the best thing that’s ever happened to either of them — but only if they can find a way to survive together.

The North American edition of THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is available for pre-order now!

Here’s the UK cover for THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE, by Alyssa Winans — due to be published by Gollancz on November 24th…

Here, too, are some early reactions to the novel…

‘A read-in-one-sitting novel with a beautifully-realized setting amid a complex examination of power and consequences, all intertwined with an intense and gripping romance.’Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun

‘Thrillingly exciting and achingly romantic, THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is rich with political intrigue and piratical adventure. It took my breath away!’Stephanie Burgis, author of Snowspelled and Scales and Sensibility

‘Space battles! Arranged marriage! Politics and pirates! Aliette de Bodard has a knack for concocting the most glittery and delicious candy-shell of space opera, and then filling it with a bittersweet romance between two fractured people trying to hold on to their ideals. Every new book of hers instantly becomes my favourite book of hers, and this was no exception.’Freya Marske, author of international bestseller A Marvellous Light

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is a quiet, intimate novel, its focus on the personal as driving force for the plot. It’s a book about love, over and above everything else: familial love, romantic love, and love for a community that doesn’t always love you back. And alongside that love, it’s also a book about hope.’Reads Rainbow

Raven has also done the covers for Aliette’s Dragons & Blades books: OF DRAGONS, FEASTS AND MURDERS and OF CHARMS, GHOSTS, AND GRIEVANCES (both also published by JABberwocky).

The Dragons & Blades books are set in the same world as the author’s award-winning and acclaimed Dominion of the Fallen novels, published by Gollancz in the UK, and Roc Books (#1-2) and JABberwocky (#3) in North America.

Coming Soon: HISTORIAS DE XUYA by Aliette de Bodard!


Announced a little while ago, Red Key Books are due to publish a Spanish edition of Aliette de Bodard‘s Xuya novellas! HISTORIAS DE XUYA will include LA MAESTRA DEL TÉ Y LA INVESTIGADORA (THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE) and SEVEN OF INFINITIES!

La maestra del té y la investigadora + Seven of Infinities, de Aliette de Bodard

Dos novelas cortas de la afamada escritora Aliette de Bodard llegan juntas en unos meses: La maestra del té y la investigadora y Seven of infinities.

Son dos novelas muy reconocidas y valoradas, con las que Aliette nos abre la puerta de manera magistral a su Universo Xuya. Ciencia ficción, investigación, un futuro alternativo, sugerentes ideas, una trama elaborada… Pocos adjetivos son para estas dos obras. Hablaremos de ellas más adelante. Pero si queréis ir conociendo a esta autora y a su obra, os invitamos a pasaros por el programa en el que Leticia Lara, quien podemos considerar la entrevistadora oficial de Aliette de Bodard en España, nos acompaña en nuestro programa vigésimo quinto para ilustrarnos sobre ella.

If you’d like to learn more about the books, check out an episode of the Red Key Books podcast, here.

Both THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE and SEVEN OF INFINITIES are available in English, published by Subterranean Press and JABberwocky. Here’s the synopsis for THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE, which won the British Fantasy and Nebula Awards for Best Novella (2019)…

Once, the mindship known as The Shadow’s Child was a military transport. Once, she leapt effortlessly between stars and planets, carrying troops and crew for a war that tore the Empire apart. Until an ambush killed her crew and left her wounded and broken.

Now the war is over, and The Shadow’s Child, surviving against all odds, has run away. Discharged and struggling to make a living, she has no plans to go back into space. Until the abrasive and arrogant scholar Long Chau comes to see her. Long Chau wants to retrieve a corpse for her scientific studies: a simple enough, well-paid assignment.

But when the corpse they find turns out to have been murdered, the simple assignment becomes a vast and tangled investigation, inexorably leading back to the past–and, once again, to that unbearable void where The Shadow’s Child almost lost both sanity and life…

And the synopsis for SEVEN OF INFINITIES, which was a finalist for the Locus Best Novella Award (2021)…

On a string of orbitals called the Scattered Pearls Belt lives Sunless Woods—sentient spaceship, master of disguise, and master thief who chafes against the obscurity that comes with her retirement. There, too, lives Vân, a poor scholar with little confidence but plenty of heart, and whose income comes from tutoring a wealthy student.

Their lives are turned upside down when Vân finds a corpse in her student’s quarters and Sunless Woods, intrigued by Vân’s sense of justice, offers her help. Scholar and spaceship must chase the mystery around the empire’s forgotten edge: from rundown teahouses to ascetic havens, and even in the wreck of a spaceship—and all the while, they begin to fall for each other in earnest. But the secrets they’ve kept from each other are large and devastating—will they and their love survive the revelations?

Coming Soon: Aliette de Bodard’s THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE!


Two days ago, Gollancz unveiled Alyssa Winans‘s stunning cover for Aliette de Bodard‘s highly-anticipated new novel, THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE!

The latest Xuya masterpiece from the author of THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE and SEVEN OF INFINITIES (to name but two), it is due to be published on November 24th, in the UK and Commonwealth. Here’s the synopsis:

Xích Si: bot maker, data analyst, mother, scavenger. But those days are over now-her ship has just been captured by the Red Banner pirate fleet, famous for their double-dealing and cruelty. Xích Si expects to be tortured to death-only for the pirates’ enigmatic leader, Rice Fish, to arrive with a different and shocking proposition: an arranged marriage between Xích Si and herself.

Rice Fish: sentient ship, leader of the infamous Red Banner pirate fleet, wife of the Red Scholar. Or at least, she was the latter before her wife died under suspicious circumstances. Now isolated and alone, Rice Fish wants Xích Si’s help to find out who struck against them and why. Marrying Xích Si means Rice Fish can offer Xích Si protection, in exchange for Xích Si’s technical fluency: a business arrangement with nothing more to it.

But as the investigation goes on, Rice Fish and Xích Si find themselves falling for each other. As the interstellar war against piracy intensifies and the five fleets start fighting each other, they will have to make a stand-and to decide what kind of future they have together…

The novel has already racked up a number of great advanced reviews. Here are just a few of them…

‘A fizzingly inventive space opera, quite unlike anything I’ve encountered before, and told with style, grace, and a big dose of heart. SF is lucky to have Aliette de Bodard’Alastair Reynolds

‘A “read-in-one-sitting” novel with a beautifully-realized setting amid a complex examination of power and consequences, all intertwined with an intense and gripping romance’Kate Elliott

‘An epic tale of piracy and romance in the void of space. A new book from Aliette de Bodard is always a treasure’Gareth L. Powell

‘Thrillingly exciting and achingly romantic, THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE is rich with political intrigue and piratical adventure. It took my breath away!’Stephanie Burgis

‘Confident, sexy, and touchingTHE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE gives a whole new meaning to the phrase “star-crossed lovers”!’Max Gladstone

‘A gripping science fiction adventure, full of cool science-fictional ideas, plot twists, and high stakes… Most importantly, this story has heart, with characters you really care about’Laura J. Mixon

THE RED SCHOLAR’S WAKE takes you on an exhilarating dive into space piracy with passion, politics, dazzling settings, and-even better-a profound core of love transcending hopelessness that rings throughout the story’ Everina Maxwell

Book reviewers interested in reading the book can request it on NetGalley, or from the publisher directly.

A number of Aliette’s other Xuya books have been published by Subterranean Press in North America, and by JABberwocky in eBook and elsewhere.

Aliette de Bodard’s ON A RED STATION, DRIFTING is on Sale This Month!


The audiobook edition of Aliette de Bodard‘s acclaimed ON A RED STATION, DRIFTING is on sale this month! Audiobooks.com is currently offering the book with a whopping 75% discount!

Published by Tantor, and read by Emily Woo Zeller, here’s the synopsis…

For generations Prosper Station has thrived under the guidance of its Honoured Ancestress: born of a human womb, the station’s artificial intelligence has offered guidance and protection to its human relatives.

But war has come to the Dai Viet Empire. Prosper’s brightest minds have been called away to defend the Emperor; and a flood of disorientated refugees strain the station’s resources. As deprivations cause the station’s ordinary life to unravel, uncovering old grudges and tearing apart the decimated family, Station Mistress Quyen and the Honoured Ancestress struggle to keep their relatives united and safe. What Quyen does not know is that the Honoured Ancestress herself is faltering, her mind eaten away by a disease that seems to have no cure; and that the future of the station itself might hang in the balance…

ON A RED STATION, DRIFTING was nominated for the Locus, Hugo, and Nebula Best Novella Awards.

New Xuya Short Story from Aliette de Bodard… and another Award Nomination!


Today we have two great pieces of Aliette de Bodard news! First up, there’s a new short story set in the author’s acclaimed Xuya series: MULBERRY AND OWL is published in the September/October 2021 issue of Uncanny Magazine! (You can also read the story online now!)

Year of the Âm Dragon, fifth year of the Peaceful Harmony Empress, Great Mulberry Nebula

Thuỷ stood in her cabin in The Goby in the Well, her bots arrayed on her shoulders and clinging to her wrists, and watched the heart of the nebula.

There was absolutely nothing remarkable about it: the Great Mulberry Nebula was large, sparsely dotted with nascent stars, and so remote that getting there, even via deep spaces, had required a three month journey. On the overlay in Thuỷ’s cabin — a thin sliver like a screen, showing her the merged data of all The Goby in the Well’s sensors — there was very little to see, either: a darkness that seemed to spread absolute from the centre of the overlay, and a corresponding gravity spike for the trapping of the light…

Aliette’s Xuya fiction is published in the UK by JABberwocky, and in North America by Subterranean Press.

‘De Bodard’s worldbuilding is precise and glittering, elegant and atmospheric… writing is always full of empathy and personality… a lovely little character-focused mystery, and everything about it delights…’ Tor.com (Hugo Award Novella Spotlight)

We’re also happy to report that Aliette’s Dominion of the Fallen series is a finalist for Best Series in this year’s Subjective Chaos Kind of Awards! The series includes the novels THE HOUSE OF SHATTERED WINGS, THE HOUSE OF BINDING THORNS, and THE HOUSE OF SUNDERING FLAMES — published in the UK by Gollancz, and in North America by Roc Books (#1-2) and JABberwocky (#3). The series also includes the novella OF DRAGONS, FEASTS, AND MURDERS, published by JABberwocky.

‘Will grab readers and force them to pay attention to the amazing writing and the phenomenal characters. de Bodard will sweep you up into the dark and dirty world Paris has become. The characters are very vivid and will stay with you until long after the last page, as each of them is fighting and longing for something. The writing style rendered the characters’ feelings and emotional turmoil beautifully. Watching Philippe and Isabelle work through their “connection” is fascinating and lovely. There’s so much going on, and every character has their own past, their own tragic history. It’s a whirlwind, it’s heartbreaking and it’s one of the best fantasy novels of 2015.’ — RT Book Reviews (Top Pick August 2015)

‘A gripping tragedy of forlorn individuals caught up in an angelic version of the Cold War… The story holds up well as a standalone, with clear possibilities but no pressing need for a sequel. De Bodard aptly mixes moral conflicts and the desperate need to survive in a fantastical spy thriller that reads like a hybrid of le Carré and Milton, all tinged with the melancholy of golden ages lost.’ — Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

‘De Bodard… has spun a fascinating Paris of decay and cruelty. ­Phillippe is a marvel of a character, unreliable as a narrator but compelling in his flaws and his deep well of homesickness.‘ — Library Journal (Starred Review)

‘A beautifully crafted novel full of complex characters, set in a post apocalyptic Paris – the image of which is truly haunting… vivid and fast-paced battles and intense political manoeuvrings… with carefully crafted characters both with layers and depth, De Bodard reflects the best and worst of human nature in her novel… an intriguing mystery, elegantly written… Something any avid fantasy reader with an open mind will devour!’ — Guardian

Aliette’s latest book is the acclaimed novella FIREHEART TIGER, published by Tor.com.

FIREHEART TIGER… is a delicate novella with threads of imperial politics, magical beings, queer romance and the psychology of trauma. It’s a bit of a miracle to feel as if you’ve read a six-book fantasy series in so few pages. This book is elegant and hypnotic as the flame of a candle, and I’ll be thinking for some time about the shadows it throws into relief.’ — New York Times Book Review

‘A fascinating story filled with strong female characters and lush prose, the relationships woven around Thanh evolve into themes of reclaiming the self and recognizing that love can hide the truth about people… a story of love, power, and what burns within. Highly recommended.’ — Library Journal (Starred Review)

‘De Bodard…, as she so often does, packs the world-building and emotional punch of an epic into a shockingly slim novella. This touching romance with the delicate negotiations of a small country’s survival against an imperial adversary would be a lovely place to start with de Bodard’s work, and fans will find more of what they’ve come to love about her stories.’ — Booklist

Locus, Hugo, and Ignyte nominations for Aliette de Bodard!


In case you missed the great news: Aliette de Bodard has received four Locus Award nominations, a Hugo Award, and an Ignyte Award nomination! Let’s start with the Locus nominations…

Aliette’s has two novellas among the finalists in the Novella Category. OF DRAGONS, FEASTS AND MURDERS, published by JABberwocky, is a stand-alone story set in the same work as the Dominion of the Fallen series. Here’s the synopsis…

Lunar New Year should be a time for familial reunions, ancestor worship, and consumption of an unhealthy amount of candied fruit.

But when dragon prince Thuan brings home his brooding and ruthless husband Asmodeus for the New Year, they find not interminable family gatherings, but a corpse outside their quarters. Asmodeus is thrilled by the murder investigation; Thuan, who gets dragged into the political plotting he’d sworn off when he left, is less enthusiastic.

It’ll take all of Asmodeus’s skill with knives, and all of Thuan’s diplomacy, to navigate this one — as well as the troubled waters of their own relationship…

The Dominion of the Fallen series is published by Gollancz in the UK, and Roc Books and JABberwocky in North America. (While a stand-alone, this novella is set after the events of the third novel in that series, THE HOUSE OF SUNDERING FLAMES.)

The second finalist novella is SEVEN OF INFINITIES, one of the author’s many acclaimed Xuya stories, published by Subterranean Press (North America) and JABberwocky

Vân is a scholar from a poor background, eking out a living in the orbitals of the Scattered Pearls Belt as a tutor to a rich family, while hiding the illegal artificial mem-implant she manufactured as a student. 

Sunless Woods is a mindship — and not just any mindship, but a notorious thief and a master of disguise. She’s come to the Belt to retire, but is drawn to Vân’s resolute integrity.

When a mysterious corpse is found in the quarters of Vân’s student, Vân and Sunless Woods find themselves following a trail of greed and murder that will lead them from teahouses and ascetic havens to the wreck of a mindship — and to the devastating secrets they’ve kept from each other.

Aliette’s third Locus finalist nomination is for the short story IN THE LANDS OF THE SPILL, which was published in the AVATARS INC Sci-Fi Anthology, edited by Ann Vandermeer.

Meanwhile, the novelette THE INACCESSIBILITY OF HEAVEN has been nominated for three awards! Published in the July-August 2020 issue of Uncanny Magazine, it is up for the Hugo, Locus, and Ignyte Best Novelette Awards!

Night. A night like any other in Starhollow: the headlights of cars, small and lost between the skyscrapers; the smell of hydromel and wine wafting from those few bars still open; and above me, the distant light of the stars, a constant reminder of the inaccessibility of Heaven.

I climbed the stairs to my flat, exhausted, my arms covered in claw-marks. At the shelter I worked at, drunken Fallen had started attacking some of the newcomers—and had turned on me when I’d tried to intervene…

The Locus Awards winners will be announced June 26, 2021, during the virtual Locus Awards Weekend.

Voting for the Hugo Awards are open now to members, and will close on November 19th. The award winners will be announced during DisCon III, which will be held in Washington, D.C., between December 15th-19th.

Voting for the Ignyte Awards is open now to anyone who wants to vote, and will close on May 21st. The award winners will be announced on September 18th.

Many congratulations, Aliette!

TEA AND MURDER in the USA!


TEA AND MURDER — the audio omnibus of Aliette de Bodard‘s THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS and THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE — is out now in North America! Published by Skyboat Media, here’s the synopsis…

Two novellas set in Aliette de Bodard’s award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe, a timeline where Asia became dominant, and where the space age has Confucian galactic empires of Vietnamese and Chinese inspiration

THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting-edge technology and esoteric sciences—its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly. Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again. But now the empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate need of its weapons.

Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her thirty years back, to the height of the Citadel’s power. But the Citadel’s disappearance still extends chains of grief and regret all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences.

THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

Welcome to the Scattered Pearls Belt, a collection of ring habitats and orbitals ruled by exiled human scholars and powerful families, and held together by living mindships who carry people and freight between the stars. In this fluid society, human and mindship avatars mingle in corridors and in function rooms, and physical and virtual realities overlap, the appearance of environments easily modified and adapted to interlocutors or current mood.

A transport ship discharged from military service after a traumatic injury, The Shadow’s Child now ekes out a precarious living as a brewer of mind-altering drugs for the comfort of space-travellers. Meanwhile, abrasive and eccentric scholar Long Chau wants to find a corpse for a scientific study. When Long Chau walks into her office, The Shadow’s Child expects an unpleasant but easy assignment. When the corpse turns out to have been murdered, Long Chau feels compelled to investigate, dragging The Shadow’s Child with her.

As they dig deep into the victim’s past, The Shadow’s Child realises that the investigation points to Long Chau’s own murky past—and, ultimately, to the dark and unbearable void that lies between the stars.

TEA AND MURDER is also available in the UK, also published by Skyboat. THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS is published in print and eBook by JABberwocky; THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE is available in print and eBook via Subterranean Press (North America) and JABberwocky (UK).

Here are just a few reviews that the books have received so far…

‘A beautifully written, bittersweet mystery in a wonderfully imaginative space setting.’ Fantasy Literature on THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

‘This slim volume packs a visceral punch. Absorbing prose takes the reader in the dark, frigid space between the stars, where ships can fail, physically and emotionally, as well as people… An imaginative read.’ Library Journal (starred review) on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘A science-fictional ode to Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, where the Holmes figure is a sharp and biting disgraced aristocratic scholar with a solid core of empathy, and the Watson-figure is a mindship with post-traumatic stress disorder from her war experiences… This is a measured, almost stately story, right up until a conclusion that explodes in fast-paced tension. It preserves the empathy and the intensity of the original Sherlockian stories, while being told in de Bodard’s sharp prose and modern style. The worldbuilding… sparkles. The characters have presence: they’re individual and compelling. And it ends it a way that recalls the original Holmes and Watson, while being perfectly appropriate to itself.’ — Tor.com

‘De Bodard revisits her far-future Xuya universe setting with this gripping novella about damaged characters driven to search for the truth… De Bodard constructs a convincingly gritty setting and a pair of unique characters with provocative histories and compelling motivations. The story works as well as both science fiction and murder mystery, exploring a future where pride, guilt, and mercy are not solely the province of humans.’ — Publishers Weekly

‘As a classical blend of far-future SF and traditional murder mystery, THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE should satisfy readers unfamiliar with the Xuya universe, but at the same time it’s an intriguing introduction to that universe, much of which seems to lie just outside the borders of this entertaining tale.’ — Locus (Gary K. Wolfe)

‘[A] well-imagined alternate future history… I’ve read several linked Xuya Universe stories over the years and I’ve enjoyed them all. Not only are they an imaginative vision of a possible future, but the stories often resonate on a human level. How could those stories possibly get any better? De Bodard found a way: by fusing this culturally rich future with a Sherlock Holmes detective story… This futuristic Holmes and Watson story is as compelling as the finely detailed universe in which it unfolds, but the novella’s real triumph is that it makes the reader crave more even before setting the stage for further mysteries.’ — Kirkus

Aliette de Bodard’s TEA & MURDER also out today!


Wait, there’s another new Aliette de Bodard release today! TEA AND MURDER is a new audiobook collection featuring two of the author’s acclaimed Xuya novellas: THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS and THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE! Published by Blackstone/Skyboat Media, here’s the synopsis…

Two novellas set in Aliette de Bodard’s award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe, a timeline where Asia became dominant and where the space age has Confucian galactic empires of Vietnamese and Chinese inspiration.

THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting-edge technology and esoteric sciences — its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly. Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again. But now the empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate need of its weapons. 

Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her 30 years back, to the height of the Citadel’s power. But the Citadel’s disappearance still extends chains of grief and regret all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences.

THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

Welcome to the Scattered Pearls Belt, a collection of ring habitats and orbitals ruled by exiled human scholars and powerful families, and held together by living mindships who carry people and freight between the stars. In this fluid society, human and mindship avatars mingle in corridors and in function rooms, and physical and virtual realities overlap, the appearance of environments easily modified and adapted to interlocutors or current mood. 

A transport ship discharged from military service after a traumatic injury, The Shadow’s Child now ekes out a precarious living as a brewer of mind-altering drugs for the comfort of space-travellers. Meanwhile, abrasive and eccentric scholar Long Chau wants to find a corpse for a scientific study. When Long Chau walks into her office, The Shadow’s Child expects an unpleasant but easy assignment. When the corpse turns out to have been murdered, Long Chau feels compelled to investigate, dragging The Shadow’s Child with her. 

As they dig deep into the victim’s past, The Shadow’s Child realises that the investigation points to Long Chau’s own murky past — and, ultimately, to the dark and unbearable void that lies between the stars.

Aliette’s Xuya fiction is published in print and eBook by Subterranean Press in North America, and JABberwocky in the UK…

Here are just a few of the great reviews the two novellas have received so far…

A science-fictional ode to Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, where the Holmes figure is a sharp and biting disgraced aristocratic scholar with a solid core of empathy, and the Watson-figure is a mindship with post-traumatic stress disorder from her war experiences… This is a measured, almost stately story, right up until a conclusion that explodes in fast-paced tension. It preserves the empathy and the intensity of the original Sherlockian stories, while being told in de Bodard’s sharp prose and modern style. The worldbuilding… sparkles. The characters have presence: they’re individual and compelling. And it ends it a way that recalls the original Holmes and Watson, while being perfectly appropriate to itself.’ — Tor.com on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘De Bodard revisits her far-future Xuya universe setting with this gripping novella about damaged characters driven to search for the truth… De Bodard constructs a convincingly gritty setting and a pair of unique characters with provocative histories and compelling motivations. The story works as well as both science fiction and murder mystery, exploring a future where pride, guilt, and mercy are not solely the province of humans.’ — Publishers Weekly on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘As a classical blend of far-future SF and traditional murder mystery, THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE should satisfy readers unfamiliar with the Xuya universe, but at the same time it’s an intriguing introduction to that universe, much of which seems to lie just outside the borders of this entertaining tale.’ — Locus (Gary K. Wolfe)

‘This slim volume packs a visceral punch. Absorbing prose pulls readers into the dark, frigid space between stars, where ships can fail, physically and emotionally, as easily as people… this novella offers sf fans an imaginative read.’ — Library Journal (Starred Review) on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘De Bodard’s world building glitters, and her characters are deeply compelling… It becomes clear early on that THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE is strongly influenced by, if not directly based upon, the Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson stories of Arthur Conan Doyle. It’s measured, almost stately, up until the conclusion, where the tension explodes into high gear. It preserves the empathy and the intensity of the original Sherlockian stories, while being told in de Bodard’s cut-glass prose and inimitable modern style. This is a really satisfying story, deeply invested in choosing to do the right thing – and in the importance of kindness. I strongly recommend it.’ — Locus (Liz Bourke)

‘[A] window onto a beautifully developed world that widens the meaning of space opera, one that centers on Chinese and Vietnamese cultures and customs instead of Western military conventions, and is all the more welcome for it.’ — New York Times on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘… a beautifully written, bittersweet mystery in a wonderfully imaginative space setting. Readers who are patient and attentive will be amply rewarded by reading this novella.’ — Fantasy Literature on THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

Aliette de Bodard’s FIREHEART TIGER is out today!


The wait is finally over: Aliette de Bodard‘s acclaimed new novella, FIREHEART TIGER is out today! Published by Tor.com in print and eBook, here’s the synopsis…

Fire burns bright and has a long memory….

Quiet, thoughtful princess Thanh was sent away as a hostage to the powerful faraway country of Ephteria as a child. Now she’s returned to her mother’s imperial court, haunted not only by memories of her first romance, but by worrying magical echoes of a fire that devastated Ephteria’s royal palace.

Thanh’s new role as a diplomat places her once again in the path of her first love, the powerful and magnetic Eldris of Ephteria, who knows exactly what she wants: romance from Thanh and much more from Thanh’s home. Eldris won’t take no for an answer, on either front. But the fire that burned down one palace is tempting Thanh with the possibility of making her own dangerous decisions.

Can Thanh find the freedom to shape her country’s fate — and her own?

Synopsis have you interested, but need more? Check out this excerpt from the novella, on Tor.com.

The novella has already received a number of great great advanced reviews. Here are just a few of them…

‘[A] high-stakes lesbian love triangle in this tightly plotted fantasy novella… convincingly combines sex, politics, and betrayal. This is an ideal pick for fantasy fans longing for non-European settings.’ — Publishers Weekly

‘A fascinating story filled with strong female characters and lush prose, the relationships woven around Thanh evolve into themes of reclaiming the self and recognizing that love can hide the truth about people… a story of love, power, and what burns within. Highly recommended.’ — Library Journal (Starred Review)

‘A beautifully written and deeply imagined story about reclaiming yourself. Highly recommended.’Kate Elliott, New York Times bestselling author

Aliette is also the author of the Dominion of the Fallen series, published by Gollancz (UK) and Roc Books and JABberwocky (North America).

Aliette is also the author of the acclaimed Xuya series of science fiction stories and novellas, published by Subterranean Press in North America and JABberwocky in the UK.

Next Week: TEA & MURDER by Aliette de Bodard!


Aliette de Bodard has a new audiobook out next week! TEA AND MURDER is a collection featuring two of the author’s acclaimed Xuya novellas: THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS and THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE! Published by Blackstone/Skyboat Media, here’s the synopsis…

Two novellas set in Aliette de Bodard’s award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe, a timeline where Asia became dominant and where the space age has Confucian galactic empires of Vietnamese and Chinese inspiration.

THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting-edge technology and esoteric sciences — its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly. Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again. But now the empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate need of its weapons. 

Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her 30 years back, to the height of the Citadel’s power. But the Citadel’s disappearance still extends chains of grief and regret all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences.

THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

Welcome to the Scattered Pearls Belt, a collection of ring habitats and orbitals ruled by exiled human scholars and powerful families, and held together by living mindships who carry people and freight between the stars. In this fluid society, human and mindship avatars mingle in corridors and in function rooms, and physical and virtual realities overlap, the appearance of environments easily modified and adapted to interlocutors or current mood. 

A transport ship discharged from military service after a traumatic injury, The Shadow’s Child now ekes out a precarious living as a brewer of mind-altering drugs for the comfort of space-travellers. Meanwhile, abrasive and eccentric scholar Long Chau wants to find a corpse for a scientific study. When Long Chau walks into her office, The Shadow’s Child expects an unpleasant but easy assignment. When the corpse turns out to have been murdered, Long Chau feels compelled to investigate, dragging The Shadow’s Child with her. 

As they dig deep into the victim’s past, The Shadow’s Child realises that the investigation points to Long Chau’s own murky past — and, ultimately, to the dark and unbearable void that lies between the stars.

Aliette’s Xuya fiction is published in print and eBook by Subterranean Press in North America, and JABberwocky in the UK…

Here are just a few of the great reviews the two novellas have received so far…

‘De Bodard revisits her far-future Xuya universe setting with this gripping novella about damaged characters driven to search for the truth… De Bodard constructs a convincingly gritty setting and a pair of unique characters with provocative histories and compelling motivations. The story works as well as both science fiction and murder mystery, exploring a future where pride, guilt, and mercy are not solely the province of humans.’ — Publishers Weekly on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘As a classical blend of far-future SF and traditional murder mystery, THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE should satisfy readers unfamiliar with the Xuya universe, but at the same time it’s an intriguing introduction to that universe, much of which seems to lie just outside the borders of this entertaining tale.’ — Locus (Gary K. Wolfe)

‘This slim volume packs a visceral punch. Absorbing prose pulls readers into the dark, frigid space between stars, where ships can fail, physically and emotionally, as easily as people… this novella offers sf fans an imaginative read.’ — Library Journal (Starred Review) on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

A science-fictional ode to Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes, where the Holmes figure is a sharp and biting disgraced aristocratic scholar with a solid core of empathy, and the Watson-figure is a mindship with post-traumatic stress disorder from her war experiences… This is a measured, almost stately story, right up until a conclusion that explodes in fast-paced tension. It preserves the empathy and the intensity of the original Sherlockian stories, while being told in de Bodard’s sharp prose and modern style. The worldbuilding… sparkles. The characters have presence: they’re individual and compelling. And it ends it a way that recalls the original Holmes and Watson, while being perfectly appropriate to itself.’ — Tor.com on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘De Bodard’s world building glitters, and her characters are deeply compelling… It becomes clear early on that THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE is strongly influenced by, if not directly based upon, the Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson stories of Arthur Conan Doyle. It’s measured, almost stately, up until the conclusion, where the tension explodes into high gear. It preserves the empathy and the intensity of the original Sherlockian stories, while being told in de Bodard’s cut-glass prose and inimitable modern style. This is a really satisfying story, deeply invested in choosing to do the right thing – and in the importance of kindness. I strongly recommend it.’ — Locus (Liz Bourke)

‘[A] window onto a beautifully developed world that widens the meaning of space opera, one that centers on Chinese and Vietnamese cultures and customs instead of Western military conventions, and is all the more welcome for it.’ — New York Times on THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE

‘… a beautifully written, bittersweet mystery in a wonderfully imaginative space setting. Readers who are patient and attentive will be amply rewarded by reading this novella.’ — Fantasy Literature on THE CITADEL OF WEEPING PEARLS

Aliette de Bodard’s SEVEN OF INFINITIES out now in eBook!


Calling all fans of Aliette de Bodard‘s award-nominated, critically-acclaimed Xuya Universe: the author’s latest novella in the setting, SEVEN OF INFINITIES is now available as an eBook outside of North America! Available from most major e-retailers, it’s published by JABberwocky. Here’s the synopsis…

On a string of orbitals called the Scattered Pearls Belt lives Sunless Woods — sentient spaceship, master of disguise, and master thief who chafes against the obscurity that comes with her retirement. There, too, lives Vân, a poor scholar with little confidence but plenty of heart, and whose income comes from tutoring a wealthy student.

Their lives are turned upside down when Vân finds a corpse in her student’s quarters and Sunless Woods, intrigued by Vân’s sense of justice, offers her help. Scholar and spaceship must chase the mystery around the empire’s forgotten edge: from rundown teahouses to ascetic havens, and even in the wreck of a spaceship — and all the while, they begin to fall for each other in earnest. But the secrets they’ve kept from each other are large and devastating — will they and their love survive the revelations?

The novella was originally published by Subterranean Press, who released it as a limited edition hardcover and an eBook in the US. Subterranean Press has also published THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE (a Xuya novella) and OF WARS, AND MEMORIES, AND STARLIGHT (a collection featuring some Xuya stories) in North America.

Both THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE and OF WARS, AND MEMORIES, AND STARLIGHT have also been published by JABberwocky outside of the US.

Here are just a few reviews that SEVEN OF INFINITIES has received so far…

‘With this lush, immersive sci-fi tale, de Bodard (The House of Sundering Flames) delves into a world as gritty as it is ethereal… [R]eaders will be swept away by the vivid prose, intrigue, and romance of this intricate tale. This fascinating, unusual story is sure to entrance.’Publishers Weekly

SEVEN OF INFINITIES is a novella concerned with forgiveness, deserved or not, about cages, self-made or otherwise. It concerns itself with growth, with grace, with ruthlessness and its costs and consequences. It’s a tightly written jewel of a story, intense and full of feeling, and I recommend it highly.’Locus (Liz Bourke)

‘A magnificent sf mystery, nuanced, intense, and romantic, with a complex, clever plot nested inside de Bodard’s rich, evocative, and vivid Xuya universe.’Kate Elliott, author of Unconquerable Sun and Cold Magic

Aliette de Bodard’s SEVEN OF INFINITIES out tomorrow!


SEVEN OF INFINITIES, Aliette de Bodard‘s latest Xuya novella is officially published tomorrow! Published by Subterranean Press in a hardcover edition, and a North American eBook edition, here’s the synopsis…

Vân is a scholar from a poor background, eking out a living in the orbitals of the Scattered Pearls Belt as a tutor to a rich family, while hiding the illegal artificial mem-implant she manufactured as a student. 

Sunless Woods is a mindship — and not just any mindship, but a notorious thief and a master of disguise. She’s come to the Belt to retire, but is drawn to Vân’s resolute integrity.

When a mysterious corpse is found in the quarters of Vân’s student, Vân and Sunless Woods find themselves following a trail of greed and murder that will lead them from teahouses and ascetic havens to the wreck of a mindship — and to the devastating secrets they’ve kept from each other.

Subterranean Press has published a number of Aliette’s Xuya stories, including the acclaimed THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE, and some of the stories included in OF WARS, AND MEMORIES, AND STARLIGHT (both are published outside of North America by JABberwocky).

Here are just a few early reviews of SEVEN OF INFINITIES

‘With this lush, immersive sci-fi tale, de Bodard… delves into a world as gritty as it is ethereal… [R]eaders will be swept away by the vivid prose, intrigue, and romance of this intricate tale. This fascinating, unusual story is sure to entrance.’Publishers Weekly

‘De Bodard’s work is marked by precision and delicacy of prose, by a concern with ethics and relationships, and by the presence of uncaring systems that violently resist critique from without — and even from within. SEVEN OF INFINITIES is deeply concerned with relationships and responsibilities: the relationship between an older friend and her youthful ‘little sisters’; the ties of loyalty between a crew of thieves with their own ethics; the bond between teacher and student — as central to the novella’s resolution as the relationship between lovers, in this case a quasi-familial, affectionate tie that goes a long way beyond duty… SEVEN OF INFINITIES is a novella concerned with forgiveness, deserved or not, about cages, self-made or otherwise. It concerns itself with growth, with grace, with ruthlessness and its costs and consequences. It’s a tightly written jewel of a story, intense and full of feeling, and I recommend it highly.’Locus

SEVEN OF INFINITIES is a mystery/romance situated in the same remote cluster of orbital habitats, the Scattered Pearls Belt, as THE TEA MASTER AND THE DETECTIVE… In SF terms, de Bodard’s Xuya Universe — a far future descended from an alternate past — is a pretty impressive imaginative construct by itself, but as she demonstrates with stories like this, it’s also a way of rethinking and sometimes reinventing familiar formulas, of defamiliarizing the familiar through the lens of different cultures and histories. But mostly, it’s a lot of fun.’Locus

‘A magnificent sf mystery, nuanced, intense, and romantic, with a complex, clever plot nested inside de Bodard’s rich, evocative, and vivid Xuya universe.’Kate Elliott