This book took me way longer to read than expected. And it was enjoyable to some degree but it just never really grabbed me. Which is probably why it took me two months to finish the thing…. First line: Here on Tiamat, where there is more water than land, the sharp edge between ocean and sky is blurred; the two merge into one.

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This book took me way longer to read than expected. And it was enjoyable to some degree but it just never really grabbed me. Which is probably why it took me two months to finish the thing…. First line: Here on Tiamat, where there is more water than land, the sharp edge between ocean and sky is blurred; the two merge into one.

The imperious Winter colonists have ruled the planet Tiamat for years, deriving wealth from the slaughter of the sea mers. But soon the galactic stargate will close, isolating Tiamat, and the year reign of the Summer primitives will begin. Their only chance at surviving the change is if Arienrhod, the ageless, corrupt Snow Queen, can destroy destiny with an act of genocide. Arienrhod is not without competition as Moon, a young Summer-tribe sibyl, and the nemesis of the Snow Queen, battles to break a conspiracy that spans space.

Interstellar politics, a millennia-long secret conspiracy, and a civilization whose hidden machineries might still control the fate of worlds all form the background to this spectacular hard science fiction novel from Joan D. Normally, I find forewords interesting as they give some background info about how a book came to be or what inspired it. Joan D. Vinge was the first author ever that I slightly disliked after reading the foreword. This was not the best start for reading my first Vinge novel.

But when I got to the actual story, I quickly forgot all about the author and simply basked in the very interesting world she has created.

On the planet Tiamat, people are divided into Summers and Winters. Winters are more tech-loving, logical people while Summers hold to spiritual traditions and felt like a more earth-bound people.

The divide between technology and a more agricultural life was tangible from the very beginning of the novel, but the story holds much more world building in store. The Hegemony needs Tiamat because of a certain ressource that can grant you prolonged maybe even eternal?

On that world, Moon and Sparks have grown up as Summer children and eventually young lovers. They both hope to become sibyls — a sort of Summer prophet who is said to have a connection to the Lady and be able to answer all questions truthfully. When only Moon is chosen as a sibyl, Sparks goes to the Winter city of Carbuncle, where the Queen rules. I really enjoyed his initial culture shock. Not only does his gullibility send him into dangerous situations right away but we also learned more about how different the worlds of Summer and Winter really were.

A chain of events sends Moon on an adventure of her own, but I want to say as little about the plot as possible to avoid spoilers. There were several things I really enjoyed about this book. Some side characters grew on me quietly, others I disliked, but most of them felt quite fleshed out and three-dimensional. My favorites were probably the police offices — the Blues — Jerusha and Gundhalinu.

In alternating chapters we follow Jerusha, Moon, Sparks, the Queen herself, and a handful of other side characters. Each of them brings their own point of view to the mix and lets us experience the truly amazing world through different eyes. The other thing I liked, although it took a while to get going, was how this is a retelling of The Snow Queen.

The reason this book took me a ridiculous amount of time to read, however, was the writing style. This was one of those books that was fun enough as long as I was reading but whenever I put it down, I had no desire whatsoever to pick it up again. So I read other books in between. And then some more books. That guy really grew on me and I wanted his story to have a happy end so badly. This has been on my TBR forever!

I keep meaning to get to it. Initially was drawn in by that awesome cover art from Michael Whelan, but I would like to eventually read the book too. Great review! Like Liked by 1 person. While I was reading it I was enjoying, but every time I put it down I had no desire to pick it up again.

You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email. December Like this: Like Loading I really do love fairy tale retellings, especially when there is a scifi twist to it.

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The Snow Queen

Before I became a regular reader of the Tor. More and more often I found it cropping up in articles I was reading on the site, often praised as a classic with a great villain. Then I discovered it won the Hugo Award in and was nominated for the Nebula in the same year. Well, colour me curious! When it arrived, I almost put it down on site. However, this awful version is not the only awful cover version…. While the world Vinge creates is unusual and interesting, the novel is laborious to read.


The Snow Queen Cycle Series

Based on the fairy tale of the same name by Hans Christian Andersen , The Snow Queen takes place on a mostly oceanic planet called Tiamat. Tiamat's suns orbit a black hole , which facilitates interstellar wormhole travel and connects Tiamat to the rest of the civilized galaxy the "Hegemony", the remnants of a fallen Galactic Empire. The Galactic Empire, which once ruled large portions of the galaxy, fell into decay millennia ago. Its remnants coalesced into a group of seven planets known as the Hegemony. Though the Hegemony has large-scale interstellar travel and high technology, it has not yet returned to the Empire's level of technological prowess. Tiamat is an oceanic planet, accessible to the Hegemony only through wormhole travel.


Joan D. Vinge – The Snow Queen

Post a Comment. Possessing all the elements that make tales fairy—innocence, love, severance, magic, and the blackest of evil, his story was ripe for a modern revisioning a la Roger Zelazny , Donna Jo Napoli, Jeff Vandermeer , Neil Gaiman , and a host of other writers who have used the seeds of the past to grow stories of their own. Not letting the opportunity slip away, Joan D. Vinge wrote The Snow Queen in


The Snow Queen by Joan D. Vinge

Joan D. To keep the uneasy peace, the government switches between Winter rule and Summer rule. Mers are hunted as frequently as possible during the Winter years, to the brink of extinction. She has secretly implanted several Summer women with embryonic clones of herself, in the hopes of extending her rule past her ritual execution at the end of Winter.

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