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Peter Higgins, author of Wolfhound Century

Myke Cole, author of Shadow Ops Series

John Brown John, translator of the Zamonia Novels

Jim C. Hines author of Libriomancer

Nick Harkaway author of Angelmaker (review here)

Martha Wells author of The Cloud Roads

David Tallerman author of Giant Thief

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Mark Charan Newton author of Nights of Villjamur (review here)

Kameron Hurley author of God's War (review here)

Brent Weeks author of The Black Prism (review here)

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Brandon Sanderson author of The Way of Kings (review here)

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Ian Tregillis author of Bitter Seeds (review here)

Sam Sykes author of Tome of the Undergates (review here)

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Character Interviews

Alexia and Lord Maccon from Gail Carriger's Soulless

Lord Akeldama from Gail Carriger's Soulless

Eva Forge from Tim Akers's The Horns of Ruin

Atticus from Kevin Hearne's Hounded


The Daylight War by Peter V. Brett

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson

Scoundrels by Timothy Zahn

Cold Days by Jim Butcher

Year Zero by Rob Reid

Alif: The Unseen by G. Willow Wilson

Scourge of the Betrayer by Jeff Salyards

Redshirts by John Scalzi

Control Point by Myke Cole

Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway
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REVIEW | The Mirrored Heavens by David J. Williams (Spectra)

Earth has been in turmoil for decades with constant wars, and infighting. Only in the last few years have political and military powers reached a detente, which is quickly eroding as an unknown terrorist group only known as Autumn Rain seek to cause havoc around the world and in nearby space. The United States and the Eurasian Coalition have agents in the field trying to understand and control the situation lest full-scale war erupt, which both side believe would mean the end of Earth.

David J. Williams' debut The Mirrored Heavens is cross breed of Cyberpunk, Thriller, Cold War Politics, and Espionage that all starts with a loud bang as a space elevator is blown into pieces and no one is sure why. Players on all sides are thrown into the mix with hardly anyone's allegiances trusted. All the main characters just seem like shades of the same person as they are all a bit sociopathic and overly precise, which can make it hard to separate the characters as they have similar voices. But these are altered humans who are specially trained to kill and infiltrate. Most agents are sent off in pairs with one being a Razor, who is the muscle of the group nearly Terminator-like while the other, the Mech, can make computers do their bidding who have circuitry on the brain.

Adrenaline floods Haskell’s body, merges with her distant ecstasy—and as it does so, her perception in the zone sharpens even further. The nervous system into which she’s extended her own crystallizes still finer. The edges grow sharper, the colors brighter, the shadows darker.

The Mirrored Heavens is an exhilarating read as Williams moves things at such a break-neck pace I often found myself having to take breaks just to absorb everything that was going on. Williams throws so much in the well it was close to overkill on more than one occasion with too much information and action making it hard to take everything in and really nail the look of everything in your mind's eye. I'm sure I lost some meanings or connections along the way. Regardless, Williams' vision of 2110 is one of the most action packed Sci-Fi novels around today with twisty characters that have capabilities that you can never guess.

Whirling. Marlowe confronts only air—and than instinct saves his life, for instead of drawing up dumbfounded, he keeps moving, diving as his adversary’s knife (replete with powered saw-edges to shear through even heavy armor) flies through the space where his head had been a moment before. Dive seamlessly switches to somersault, leaving him on the floor, firing backward over his head, riddling the man with bullets. The whole action has taken less than two seconds. Whoever he was, this man is now dead.

Williams denies giving his characters even the briefest of breaks as they are tossed from one battle to the next in this very bleak future. One of the main questions that kept coming to mind was: Does this future humanity deserve to survive? So few people seem redeemable and most are downright unlikable as they use and twist people to their own desires. Even thinking this I didn't have a problem pulling forward given the vivid, but somewhat frantic style.

If you like complex military Sci-Fi with a razor sharp edge or cold war politics mixed with hi-tech action The Mirrored Heavens is well worth checking out despite some issues. I give The Mirrored Heavens 7 out of 10 hats. Also, I'd recommend the mass market edition as it has a nice appendix with a timeline that I made use of more than once. I have The Burning Heavens the second book in the Autumn Rain Trilogy, which I'll partake of in the future to see if some of the issues I noticed were improved upon. Plus there is a lot going on in this future that I want answers to.  Also check out the site for the series as it looks pretty cool.

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Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm still reading this one and enjoying it so far.

Andrew Liptak said...

I read and reviewed this as well (, and pretty much came to the same conclusions - it's a very fun, fast paced book, but there's a lot of information in it, and I found myself having to read it must more slowly than I otherwise would have. Same with the sequel, which I'm reading now. It is a good read though.

Bryce L. said...

I liked The Burning Skies even better, but it's definitely much the same. So fast it's almost too fast, but I liked how it was different than anything I've read otherwise.

Andrew Leonard said...

I've heard tons of good things about this series.

I don't read much sci/fi but all these great reviews are making me think its time I checked it out.