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M Reed created Dodger and her brother He’s not their father Not uite But he has a plan to raise the twins to the highest power to ascend with them and claim their authority as his ownGodhood is attainable Pray it isn’t attain. In the same ordinary town on the same ordinary street lived two ordinary children who had never uite managed to cross pathsMR HUMPHREY So what was this book aboutME Honestly I couldn t tell you but I loved itMR HUMPHREY MEOk but have you ever read a book that is so intellectually deep and intricately detailed in subject matter that you aren t well versed in that you haven t got the first clue how to explain it to someone else Honestly that s how I feel about most of Seanan McGuire s books because her writing is so flawlessly executed that we aren t worthy of her stories yet she allows us to read them anyway Even the blurb is fairly cryptic and I think the publisher wisely chose to keep the cards close in hand on this book for the very reason that it s best to go in open minded and ready to be lead by the author hand in hand to The Impossible City Medicine rests upon four pillars philosophy astronomy alchemy and ethics That above uote to me sums up what this book is about Insert best SNL Stefan voice This book has everything twins alchemy uantum physics fires Frankenstein creatures MORE FIRES telepathy of sorts a book within a book EVEN MORE FIRES well I think you get the picture Throwing a list of buzz words at you is much easier than trying to explain precisely WHAT this book is and the author even stated in her afterword that her four page pitch of this novel wasn t enough for her agent to get what this book was so she just wrote the damn thing Badass level achieved This book is long friends Please don t let it scare you because i plowed through all roughly 550 pages in 3 days and that s only because I had adulting to do in between The beauty of McGuire s novels are that she takes an idea that seems so far fetched it could never happen and then magically forms it into this ALMOST realistic and very scientific sounding hypothesis that has you googling at midnight wondering if scientists have achieved this level of madness It s safe to say that this book won t be for everybody and will mostly appeal to those looking for a science fiction novel that is heavy on the science side but once again Seanan McGuire ueen of all things intellectually uirky and deliciously bizarre has blown me away Highly recommended for those looking for a challenging read and I mean that as the highest compliment It doesn t matter how beautiful your theory is it doesn t matter how smart you are If it doesn t agree with experiment it s wrong Richard Feynman Many thanks to the publisher for providing my review copy via NetGalley

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Middlegame

Meet Roger Skilled with words languages come easily to him He instinctively understands how the world works through the power of storyMeet Dodger his twin Numbers are her world her obsession her everything All she understands she. It s 3 amYou hear a noise downstairsYou go to investigateIt s me sitting at your kitchen tableI ask you to sit downSlowly reluctantly you doI draw in a small sharp breath and start telling you how the thought of this book still stirs such a storm in me a thousand smithereens of joy and yearning and grief all of it seething and bleeding and writhing How the story settled like sediment in my mind and how it was days before I could pull my senses home to my body most of them at least Enough to stop the spinning and bail out the excess feeling that threatened otherwise to capsize me What s the book about you may askRoger and Dodger have hidden their secret for so long and worked so hard to be normal but now the truth lay all around them in crimson arcs of gore written out across the groundBut you need context So let s try the ending again writ seuentiallyGreed lies beneath all our ugliest transactions Roger and Dodger are the product of an alchemist s covetous desire to make the universe yield to his sounding by controlling the elemental forces of creation His name is James Reed and he s been trying for over a hundred years to follow his master s teachings and harness a universal concept called the Doctrine of Ethos by splitting it into a pair of kneadable human bodies one of whom is endowed with an extraordinary deftness for math and the other an extraordinary dexterity for languageEver since Roger had heard Dodger s voice in his head as clearly as if an unseen person had pronounced the words he d stumbled onto something that refused to be believed Roger has a twin whose name rhymes with his own and they can communicate via uantum entanglement Their situation was one they drew consolation from as they marveled at it But things were seldom that simple When the artfully placed leaves blow away revealing the shining jaws of the trap beneath their amazement slips taking on an unfamiliar uncomfortable form And the Roger and Dodger fight against their destiny they only draw it tightly around their throatsJames Reed had cast the shining snare long before Roger and Dodger knew about each other and it is closing and they will be caught There is so much blood It s uite a fitting opening sentence for a novel steeped in the eventuality of menaceMcGuire knows how to hold the reader spellbound Her storytelling has its own energy and speed it brings the tale into the room with its dark and its chill I resented spending time away from the novel Like Dodger s voice it seemed to call to me like a faint heartbeat insistent and persuasive Yet I did not really chase after explanations snatch at reasons or make effortful attempts to connect thoughts Instead reading Middlegame was like being caught in a current drifting along with the river s twists and turns I simply waited with a mounting thrill of consternation and exhilaration until the conclusion that had been inexorably readying itself in the depths came to the surface I must warn you however that this book isn t short on misery tragedy or violence Darkness is served up deliciously in this novel and a tendril of fear for the characters often curled in my belly But fear not there is a happy ending Perhaps uncertain than happy In any case the world will eventually run at its own pace againMiddlegame is also a complex intricate clockwork of a story But the novel s structure is a tricky one and our dauntless heroes aren t the only ones destined to get their heads turned around here The concepts in this book come fast thick and tangled seeming at first dreamy and obscure like a sentence half translated into a new language It s the kind of tangle that you could easily make worse in your efforts to straighten things out The past and the present often touch and overlap and the story makes abrupt jumps ahead in time in sometimes illuminating sometimes disconcerting or confusing ways But McGuire supports all of that mind twisting theory with deeply empathetic characters and even when the novel lags the clarity of her prose and keenness of her dialogue slice throughIn the end this is a book that convinces and compels it is genuinely unlike anything that I ve ever read and altogether triumphantBut what holds steady throughout the novel is how expertly balanced the pursuit of plot is with the pursuit of characterization I am a reader who leans towards character driven stories and to my delight Dodger and Roger form the thread that holds the beads of this novel together McGuire has given us a mind constellating peek behind the workings of the universe then distilled it into a uiet intimate tale of twin siblings who separated by miles and decades have constructed between them a sense of unaccustomed security as impressive as a moated castle but they alone knew how flimsy it really wasSee Dodger and Roger were two sides of a single coin that could be thrown in the air and land on either side They were uantum tangled twins each a presence that surrounded the other and protected them and was no less real for being for years invisible The irony is as hard and cold as ax fall for their entanglement often only sharpened the hardship of their existenceMiddlegame takes readers through a journey of their obsessive years of curiosity of waiting for their destiny to reveal its staggering answer to them then the years of loss and confusion when the blunted edges of their relationship had suddenly become cut throat sharp threatening to slip and slice them both if not handled with care then the years of revelation when Dodger and Roger realize that their center of gravity have immutably shifted from being one of one alone apart to being half of something that would crumble if either side were cut awayI felt such a keen sense of connection with the characters With Dodger who could sense numbers and see their path in her mind as though they were right there waiting to resolve like a kaleidoscope in need of turning Dodger who feels losses most keenly whose mind was a torment and whose chest was hinged like a gate and she had simply never noticed until Roger had spoken the word sister and filled an empty place inside her With Roger to whom words were like a drumbeat constantly pulling at his pulse Roger who understood the torment in Dodger s eyes and carried it with him down the long roads of his life who was always too acutely aware of how porous is the line that separated them Such a current of love and rage and resentment ran between Roger and Dodger that at times the novel felt colored by it while all else was drowned and forgottenSiblings huhI falter into a cutting silenceWell I ve taken too many moments of your timeI press the book into your handsJust trust me wishlist blog twitter tumblr

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Does so through the power of mathRoger and Dodger aren’t exactly human though they don’t realise it They aren’t exactly gods either Not entirely Not yetMeet Reed skilled in the alchemical arts like his progenitor before hi. My mind has officially meltedWhat is Middlegame you askHonestly I m not uite sureI stared at the wall for a good 20 minutes after I turned the last page just contemplating words and life What a freaking achievement for Seanan McGuireA tour de force of Science Fiction Expertly crafted from start to finish in order to make you feel like the secrets of the universe are about to be revealed There are so many intriguing concepts in Middlegame the narrative is so vast following our two main characters Roger and Dodger from the time they are children up through adulthoodI can t lie It s a challenging read but so worth the effort You shouldn t be multi tasking whilst reading this It needs deserves your full attentionThis gave me Dark Tower vibes a huge positive in how prodigious and all consuming the narrative was I absolutely adore McGuire s writing Each and every word carefully selected and placed where it would be most effectiveI am really excited for people to read this I am so interested to see what others think I know it will not be for everyone but I also feel a lot of people will be as impressed as I wasAt this point I will read anything ANYTHING that Seanan McGuire writes She is a giftThank you so much to the publisher Tor for providing me with an early copy to read and review I certainly feel blessed to have received it I appreciate the opportunity and know it will be a huge success


10 thoughts on “Middlegame

  1. says:

    It’s 3 amYou hear a noise downstairsYou go to investigateIt’s me sitting at your kitchen tableI ask you to sit downSlow

  2. says:

    This synopsis had been taunting me for months It's honestly just so well written I can barely stand it For some reason I was hella nervous to actually get into this book This was my first Seanan McGuire outside of one of my favourite series of all time The Wayward Children books and I figured there's no way I could TRULY love an adult fantasy novel about scienceand godsright?But slap my ass and call me Judy if this is

  3. says:

    “They grew up sort of weird and sort of wonderful and they found each other and lost each other over and over again But this time when they found each other they came as close as they could to the Impossible City They walked the length of the improbable road and the girl wrote down everything she knew about the universe and the boy read it all aloud and everything was okay” Going into Middlegame I don't think I actually considered that

  4. says:

    I admire the ambition and creativity with this story but unfortunately I couldn't find myself attached to any of the characters and the stakes and often found the writing to be convoluted and scattered

  5. says:

    My mind has officially meltedWhat is Middlegame you ask?Honestly I'm not uite sureI stared at the wall for a good 20 minutes after I turned the last page just contemplating words and life What a freaking achievement for Seanan McGuire?A tour de force of Science Fiction Expertly crafted from start to finish in order to make you feel like the secrets of the universe are about to be revealed There are so many int

  6. says:

    The author really has a knack for creating interesting worlds or powers and characters Siblings linked by uantum entanglement? Powers worthy o

  7. says:

    OMG OMG OMG OMGOMGIm not the most religious person but I think I’m about to worship the intelligence evil genius writing skills and visionary creation capabilities of this author I want to read everything the author writes I want to buy us best friends forever bracelets and be the most devoted batshit crazy fanIf you w

  8. says:

    In the same ordinary town on the same ordinary street lived two ordinary children who had never uite managed to cross pathsMR HUMPHREY So what was this book about?ME Honestly I couldn't tell you but I loved itMR

  9. says:

    This was still a good read but I really am sad I didn't end up loving it RTC 3 Youtube | Instagram | Twitter | Blog | Spot

  10. says:

    Am I dreaming or am I awake? I don’t know anyIt doesn’t matter Because in either case I’m still forever going to dream about the improbab