What I Read in 2023 (Q1)
Shards of Earth (The Final Architecture, #1) by Adrian Tchaikovsky. This was a big book, both in terms of the number of pages and the scope of the story. Humanity has spread throughout the universe. The Architects—strange, moon-sized entities that destroy entire planets—are back. I really enjoyed the concept of Unspace—a plane of un-reality where faster-than-light travel is possible. Interesting science, great character building, and a complex and enjoyable plot made this one of my favorite books on the list.
Eyes of the Void (The Final Architecture, #2) by Adrian Tchaikovsky. This book was a solid follow-up to Shards of Earth. There’s more playing with the concept of Unspace, some interactions with an alien gangster, and a mysterious ancient machine that acts as a looking glass for the entire universe. The ending wasn’t exactly satisfying, but I suspect the conclusion to this saga will come in a future book.
American Gods by Neil Gaiman. It took me years to finally pick up American Gods, but I’m glad I did. The story and themes are complex, dark, playful, and in general very Gaiman.
Dark Matter by Blake Crouch. This was a fun read. What would waking up in someone else’s reality look like? What would you do to get back? The science is solid enough, and the pace of the story is pretty high throughout.
Dogs of War by Adrian Tchaikovsky. Science has created the perfect soldiers—genetically engineered Bioforms wielding bulletproof skin, enhanced intelligence, and crazy weaponry. This book surprised me a bit with its interesting takes on independence and morality.
Other Minds by Peter Godfrey-Smith. This was a great read. It starts off with a review of how single-celled organisms evolved methods of signaling and interpreting their environment to become the types of organisms we see in the world today. This is a good one for exploring different models for what consciousness is and how it might manifest in other minds.