RogerBW's Blog

Knot of Shadows, Lois McMaster Bujold 24 May 2022

2021 fantasy novella in the World of the Five Gods (formerly known as Chalion). A corpse found floating in the harbour is not unusual… but this one, while clearly dead, is still moving. Penric digs into what happened, and why.

Some parts of the solution are obvious, other parts are less so, and much more than most recent Bujold this is a story of tragedy: even when the disruption to society has been rectified in the best mystery-story tradition, the dead people are still dead, and the people left behind still have to go on with their lives without them. This feels like Bujold's meditation on life, death, sin and justice, in this setting that has the best-worked fantasy religion I've met, not to mention the only series I've read that comes close to showing how fundamental religion was to mediaeval culture.

It's not a romp the way several of the other books have been; there's no triumphant climax in which things are set right; there's just, well, this is the limit of what humans can do, and we've done it, and any more than that is in the hands of the gods.

I get the impression that Bujold these days only writes another book if she feels she has something new to say. Fortunately, she has.

[Buy this at Amazon] and help support the blog. ["As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases."]

Previous in series: The Assassins of Thasalon | Series: Penric and Desdemona

Comments on this post are now closed. If you have particular grounds for adding a late comment, comment on a more recent post quoting the URL of this one.

Tags 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s 2010s 3d printing action advent of code aeronautics aikakirja anecdote animation anime army astronomy audio audio tech aviation base commerce battletech beer boardgaming book of the week bookmonth chain of command children chris chronicle church of no redeeming virtues cold war comedy computing contemporary cornish smuggler cosmic encounter coup covid-19 crime crystal cthulhu eternal cycling dead of winter doctor who documentary drama driving drone ecchi economics en garde espionage essen 2015 essen 2016 essen 2017 essen 2018 essen 2019 essen 2022 essen 2023 existential risk falklands war fandom fanfic fantasy feminism film firefly first world war flash point flight simulation food garmin drive gazebo genesys geocaching geodata gin gkp gurps gurps 101 gus harpoon historical history horror hugo 2014 hugo 2015 hugo 2016 hugo 2017 hugo 2018 hugo 2019 hugo 2020 hugo 2021 hugo 2022 hugo 2023 hugo 2024 hugo-nebula reread in brief avoid instrumented life javascript julian simpson julie enfield kickstarter kotlin learn to play leaving earth linux liquor lovecraftiana lua mecha men with beards mpd museum music mystery naval noir non-fiction one for the brow opera parody paul temple perl perl weekly challenge photography podcast politics postscript powers prediction privacy project woolsack pyracantha python quantum rail raku ranting raspberry pi reading reading boardgames social real life restaurant reviews romance rpg a day rpgs ruby rust scala science fiction scythe second world war security shipwreck simutrans smartphone south atlantic war squaddies stationery steampunk stuarts suburbia superheroes suspense television the resistance the weekly challenge thirsty meeples thriller tin soldier torg toys trailers travel type 26 type 31 type 45 vietnam war war wargaming weather wives and sweethearts writing about writing x-wing young adult
Special All book reviews, All film reviews
Produced by aikakirja v0.1