Reading: Rachel Hartmann — Shadow Scale

Got home Saturday with this brick of a book, read the dust jacket and realised Shadow Scale is the sequel to Seraphina, which I read almost two years ago and thought was well-smart. One of the smartest. I went through something of a fantasy reading stage back then, really trying to give it a go, and did find some brilliant works, like Jo Walton’s Among Others, and quite a bit of disappointment. More of the latter than the former. My expectations are so easily spoilt.

No connection then in my doddering brain between Rachel Hartmann’s two books, just reading in a couple of places that Shadow Scale was rather bloody good, and me needing some fiction respite, and knowing there’s months to go before all the things I’m actively waiting for get published, decided OK, I’ll give it a whirl, and only then realising the connection, but having such a poor recollection, was it that one that was quite good, or that other one (several ones) that were quite not-good? Good it is. Very good. Fucking love Seraphina’s world to bits.

Almost 600 pages too.

And so far it seems to have escaped the horrible default sequel abyss, the one The Matrix fell into (almost everything Hollywood does, and many things not) because the story has actually been told and now it’s just “Further Adventures of …” Just realised it reminds me of Saladin Ahmed’s Throne of the Crescent Moon, in characters if not in something of the setting. Oh hey, and it’s YA (that’s Young Adult to you). Saints’ dogs but it never occurred to me. Amazing how much YA I read is so very better than A. Likely to be very high on my favourite books of the year, this one.