A brief note on why I…

A brief note on why I liked Ann Leckies Ancillary Justice, because Kevin and a few others have been asking, mostly because they started it, werent impressed, and are wondering if they should give it another go.

a) The gender pronoun thing functioned like magic for me. When I read this book, I spent perhaps the first two-thirds still trying to assign male / female gender to all the characters the protagonist encountered, and then at some point, my subconscious realized  oh, it doesnt actually matter! And stopped trying, making for a much more relaxed and immersive reading experience going forward. This is something that I would dearly like to be able to do in the real world: not care about and not immediately try to subconsciously assign gender to every person I meet, for a myriad of personal and social justice reasons, but mostly because it just shouldnt matter for anything aside from dating (and, yknow, Im bi, so not even that). So having a few hours when I could not care about gender in a fictional world felt like a rewriting of my brain, and magic, and the future. I might recommend the book for that alone, but I cant guarantee that youd have the same experience.

b) I really got into the characters and story. Now, here Ill admit that I found it slow going for the first half or so, and that if the gender pronoun thing hadnt been there to tease me along, I might have given up before getting to the parts I really loved, story-wise. But by the end of the book, I was completely caught up in the space opera, and I am now eager for the sequel, Ancillary Sword, completely separate from whether theres any gender pronoun stuff in book two or not.

Hope this helps you decide your book-consuming future. But in case you missed it, this is the very first novel to win the Hugo, the Nebula, the Clarke, and the Locus Awards. So theres that too.

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