Books in brief: Briggs, Rouaud, Griffith, Wecker, Reid

Patricia Briggs, Shifting Sands. Ace, 2014. ARC.

Read for review for Tor.com. A collection of short fiction set in Briggs’ urban fantasy world. Entertaining, but nothing particularly special.

Antoine Rouaud, The Path of Anger. Gollancz, 2013. Translated from the French by Tom Clegg. Copy courtesy of the publisher.

Read for review for Ideomancer.com. Ambitious and not entirely successful epic-style fantasy novel. Lacks decent female characters. Mixed feelings overall. Jared Shurin has a good comprehensive review of it at Pornokitsch.

Nicola Griffith, Slow River. Gollancz, 2013 (1995).

An excellent meditative book about identity and growth and never being the same person you were before. Brilliant. Highly recommended.

Helene Wecker, The Golem and the Djinni. Harper, 2013.

Read for the column. A fable about immigration and loneliness. Not without its problems, but overall a gorgeous, accomplished debut. Recommended.

Non-fiction

Anthony Reid, Southeast Asia in the Age of Commerce 1450-1680, two vols. Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1988-1993.

I believe I heard of these books when Kate Elliott mentioned them on Twitter: they are exactly what they say in the title, and very interesting the history of that time and place is, too. It does bring home to me how little I know about Southeast Asian history in general: I’ll be skimming the bibliography for available titles to add to my store of knowledge, I think.