Book Talk: Teleportation through literature

As the summer turns to fall, it’s the perfect time to lose yourself in literature

Peter Critchley

Special to the Morning Star

A rainy autumn day is a perfect excuse to lose yourself in a book, the kind of book that transports you to new worlds beyond imagination.

Half A King (2014) by Joe Abercrombie is the first novel in a superb fantasy trilogy. Prince Yarvi, a younger son born with a withered left hand, never thought he would ever sit on the black throne or be king of Gettland.

When his father and brother are killed, Yarvi is crowned and almost immediately betrayed. He is nearly killed and traded into slavery. But Yarvi, clever and with a keen intelligence shaped by the years he spent studying for the ministry, plans to live long enough to fulfil his oath to avenge his father’s death and take back his kingdom.

Artemis (2017) by Andy Weir, author of the remarkable debut novel The Martian, is a terrific read — the plot is tightly crafted, the science is cool and it is fiercely funny at times. Jazz Bashara lives and works in Artemis, the first and only city on the moon, as a full-time porter and part-time smuggler of Earth’s luxuries.

But Jazz dreams of becoming “filthy rich” and finds it impossible to walk away from a huge payday dangled by Trond Landvik, a wealthy entrepreneur. He offers her enough money to take her breath away if she can sabotage a competitor in order to take over the moon’s aluminium industry. Of course, there is a catch — Sanchez Aluminum is owned by O Palacio, the most powerful organized crime syndicate in Brazil.

Related: Book Talk – Praise for genre fiction

Related: Book Talk – Okanagan beach reads

Red Rising (2014) by Pierce Brown is an evocative thriller that will captivate readers and leave them wishing for more. Sixteen-year-old Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the colour-coded society of the future, and believes he is among the first peoples of Mars and working to create a habitable planet for the people of a dying earth. But Darrow soon discovers this is nothing more than a myth — he and the Reds like him are slaves to a decadent ruling class that have lived on the surface of Mars for generations.

And when his equally young wife is hung for singing a song of freedom, Darrow sacrifices everything to infiltrate the Institute, a deadly schooling ground for the dominant Gold caste where only the most ruthless and intelligent can hope to rise to join the ruling class.

All three titles and many more similar works are available through your Okanagan Regional Library www.orl.bc.ca.


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