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I love mustelid haberdashery, vinho verde wine, and wensleydale with fruit.

Ancillary Justice - Ann Leckie

So I received this book as a gift, was told I really should read it, and threw it in Mt. TBR.   Then the Hugo list went out, and I was reading about the books (I either have read them or have absolutely no interest in wasting my time), except for this one.  Which I hadn't read, and was going to purchase, when I was roundly reminded that it had already been purchased for me.  Oops.

And I read it.   And sweet baby octopus, I adore it.  
I had a bit of a rough start getting into this book.  I read on the bus, in 20 minute gulps, and I firmly believe this is not the book to be doing that with.   I actually had to skim the first few paragraphs to get a handle on what the hell I was reading.    It's just not a "few minutes at a time" kind of book.


This book is phenomenally well written.   The world building, I believe, is some of the best I've seen in SFF/spec fic in a long time.   The plot was solid, the switching between back history and current events was smooth and easy to follow.   It's sci-fi with an interesting militaristic bent without being a hard military-sci fi.    It's space-opera without the cheese. There are humans and "humans" and things that are most definitely not humans-dressed-as-aliens.   They're truly alien in their physiology as well as philosophy.


And I really liked and connected with the main characters in the story.


This novel is about a future/different/whatever space-faring expansionist society and what happens with a rather interesting breakdown in the despotic leadership.   What happens when a machine, who is or is not human, is forced to go against their feelings but with their programs.     What *is* human, what side are you on when your leader is on different sides.   It's delightfully complicated.

This novel has already won several awards, and I really believe (and hope), wholeheartedly, it should win the Hugo.   And I'm not lying when I say that when I read that this is the first of a series (whether it's linear or just in the universe), I actually squealed with happiness.   I may have lost Iain Banks, but now I've got Ann Leckie.