Thursday, February 16, 2017

Extracurricular Activities, by Yoon Ha Lee

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(Space Opera; Machineries of Empire) A Heptarchate undercover mission lead by one of Jedao’s friends has gone missing, so Jedao goes undercover to try and rescue them. (14,259 words; Time: 47m)

Rating: ★★★☆☆ Average
Recommended By: RHorton:5

This is a prequel to “Nine Fox Gambit,” but it’s not necessary to read that book first. In fact, it’s possible that reading this story first would make the book more approachable.

"," by (edited by Jonathan Strahan), published on by .

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Pro: The best part of this story is the hilarious ways that the narrator rationalizes Jedao’s different actions. For example, “Jedao had a standard method for dealing with new commanders, which was to research them as if he planned to assassinate them.”

It’s a good plot, with a clear resolution.

The world building is extensive.

Con: The world building is confusing.

Although Jedao isn’t a Mary Sue, he acts like he thinks he is. It’s hard to believe anyone so reckless as he would be put in command of anything. (Similar to complaints about Star Trek’s Captain Kirk.) His success has an unearned quality to it that makes it less-satisfying.

The Gwa-an are hard to take seriously. Their priorities are so impractical that it’s hard to believe their society functions at all.

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2 comments (may contain spoilers):

  1. Interesting to see Shuos Jedao alive and on his own.

  2. Yes, I was rather glad I read this and "The Battle of Candle Arc" before reading either of the novels.