Two Sisters in Exile — Aliette de Bodard

Originally published in Solaris Rising 1.5, but you can now read for free over at Clarkesworld.

And so we leave the birth of mindships behind us and move to the other end, to their deaths.

Once upon a time there was the Dai Viet Empire, now that has become divided between the Northerners and the Nam, the Nam are a warring bunch whose mindships don’t last for very long, while the Northerners are a peaceful, creative, trading people whose mindships simply never die: that is, until Nam kills one by accident.

I’ve enjoyed every book from this universe i’ve read already, they’ve all been really good, but this one felt like it all just got even better as we learn ever more about these living space ships and each culture’s attitude towards them.

Once again, Aliette writes perfectly, continuing to build this universe story by story, while at the same time setting a stage and giving us delightful little teasers of what i hope is going to be played out in future stories.

Next up: Three Cups of Grief, by Starlight.

Aliette’s Page

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