Jul 18

Publishers Weekly starred review for Ghost Talkers

Ghost Talkers by Mary Robinette Kowal

“In this entrancing alternate history, Kowal (the Glamourist Histories series) introduces the Spirit Corps, a group that communicates with recently killed soldiers to gather important wartime information. It’s the summer of 1916, and American medium Ginger Stuyvesant works with the British Army at Le Havre to coordinate and lead spirit circles. When her intelligence officer fiancé, Capt. Benjamin Harford, uncovers a German plot to target the Spirit Corps and is sent to the front soon after, Ginger must use every power at her disposal to track down a traitor and protect the corps. Kowal’s depiction of spiritualism is richly imagined, and its complications and consequences are thoughtfully considered. Her depiction of the Western Front includes diverse characters often neglected in wartime stories: the many people who help Ginger include women young and old, people of color, and disabled veterans, all of whom are dismissed by the British men in charge. The well-drawn characters and the story’s gripping action and deep emotion will captivate readers.” — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

Dec 21

Kowal and Dickinson among NPR’s Best Books of 2015

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal and The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson are included on NPR’s Best Books of 2015 list!

Oct 19

Publishers Weekly starred review for Word Puppets

Word Puppets by Mary Robinette Kowal

“Kowal’s short works are difficult to classify, often poignant or tragic, and always spectacularly written. These 19 tales vary widely. “The Bound Man” spans ages within a dramatic alternate world; “Chrysalis” examines a single segment of an alien life cycle. Characters struggle to sort out difficult interfamilial relationships on a generation ship in “For Want of a Nail.” Readers will sympathize with a teenage girl who is both stereotypically American and undeniably fae in “American Changeling.” Some stories, such as “The White Phoenix Feather,” offer a moment of laughter to lighten the mood, but even within the humor, the writing is serious in execution, style, and timing. Kowal sends readers off on a breathless trip to the stars.” — Publishers Weekly, Starred Review

Jun 10

Locus on Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal (again)

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

“Of Noble Family, book five of Mary Robinette Kowal’s “The Glamourist Histories,” concludes the sequence with emphatic proof that her world-building and her characters can’t be constrained by the standard tropes of alternate-historic magical fantasies or variations on Regency Romance.” — Locus

May 14

Locus on Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

Of Noble Family by Mary Robinette Kowal

“Family, rather than art or magic, is the central theme for this novel, the fifth and final in the Glamourist Histories series. Jane and Vincent are finally relaxing with Jane’s family, in Vienna, when word comes that Vincent’s hateful father has died on his estate in Antigua, and left a new will that can only be released to a family member. Vincent’s eldest brother died in a carriage accident that left the next son badly injured – and the new Earl of Verbury. He asks Vincent to go to Antigua and take care of things, so he and Jane head out to get the will – and find a hellish mess of the old Earl’s making. What horrifies Vincent and Jane most is the treatment of the slaves, some of them clearly family members themselves, but their efforts to help are repeatedly stymied. Fortunately, no one expects the two to have the spying skills they’ve acquired in their adventures, and gradually they win through. There are parts that are a bit predictable, and I missed the emphasis on Art, but it’s a good read anyway, with a very final epilogue that nicely concludes the series.” — Locus

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