Tag Archives: novella

The Haunting of Tram Car 015 by P. Djeli Clark

This is the last of the Hugo Award nominated novellas I was able to read. Just in time, because the Hugo Awards will be given out next week. I’ve put in my votes for the portions I felt comfortable voting for. (For example, I didn’t vote for editors, because I don’t know what makes a good editor. I did vote for Best Dramatic Presentation, Long Form because I’d seen several of the movies/series nominated. I didn’t vote for Best Dramatic Presentation, Short Form because I hadn’t seen those particular episodes yet, even if I’d seen some of the series.)

Published: 2019

Genre: fantasy novella

Length: 144 pages

Setting: 1912, Cairo inhabited by djinns

Summary: Agents Hamed and Onsi of the Ministry of Alchemy, Enchantments and Supernatural Entities are called in to investigate a haunted tram car. It takes some investigating to determine what exactly is haunting the car and how to exorcise the spirit. Continue reading


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Anxiety is the Dizziness of Freedom by Ted Chiang

This is another novella nominated for a Hugo this year.

Published: 2019 in Exhalation: Stories

Genre: science fiction novella

Length: 71 pages

Setting: a near future city

Summary: Nat works for a company that buys prisms. Prisms are quantum entangled devices that allow people to talk to another universe. The trick is to find a prism that connects a universe different enough from your own to make it worth it to talk to it. Morrow, one of Nat’s colleagues, finds one like that. He just needs to convince the owner to sell it to him so he can make some money off of it. Continue reading

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The Deep by Rivers Solomon

Another Hugo-nominated novella to review.

Published: 2019

Genre: fantasy novella

Length: 166 pages

Setting: somewhere around the southern Atlantic Ocean, modern day-ish

Summary: Yetu is the Historian for the wajinru, a water people created from babies born to pregnant women (often African slaves) thrown overboard on ocean passages. Yetu has a hard time holding onto herself while she also immerses herself in the memories of her people. That is why she leaves everyone immersed in the memories during the latest Remembrance, instead of remaining to reclaim the memories. She makes friends with a person and eventually returns to her people. Continue reading

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Balthazar by Lawrence Durrell

This is book two of the Alexandria Quartet, as top 100 book of the century

Published: 1958

Genre: fiction

Length: 185 pages

Setting: Alexandria, Egypt, covering the same time period as Justine

Summary: Short version: Balthazar’s version of the events that occurred in Justine Continue reading

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This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

This is another Hugo-nominated novella.

Published: 2020

Genre: science fiction novella

Length: 224 pages

Setting: multiple strands of the multiverse

Summary: Red and Blue are agents fighting on opposite sides in a time war. They are the best at what they do, which makes each aware of the other. They start to leave each other ephemeral messages, coded into the reality of the different timelines. Slowly, they fall in love with each other, never having met. In order to survive, they must take on characteristics of the other. Continue reading

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In An Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire

I was going to review all the Hugo nominated novellas in a single post, like I did for the short stories and novelettes, but they’re just too long. So, each one will get their own post. Here’s the first one I read.

Published: 2019

Genre: fantasy novella

Length: 187 pages

Setting: a present day American town and the Goblin Market, before the events of The Wayward Children series which starts with Every Heart a Doorway

Summary: Lundy is a rather quiet, by the rules child who finds a door into the Goblin Market one day. She makes her first friend there, but is drawn back to reality. After a few more visits, she tries to get around having to make a decision of living in the Market or reality by the age of 18 and gets banished. Continue reading

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The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps by Kai Ashante Wilson

I picked this book up from a GeekMom post about books and series by black authors. This was one of the books suggested that I could find on Hoopla to listen to for free.

Published: 2015

Genre: fantasy novella

Length: 212 pages

Setting: The City of Waters and the road through the Wildeeps in a preindustrial magical world

Summary: Short version: Demane takes a caravan job traveling through the Wildeeps Continue reading

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Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

I decided to read this to the kids as our last bit of Renaissance literature instead of Frankenstein.

Published: 1886

Genre: 19th century literature with a dash of science fiction (it’s so old you can read it for free from Gutenberg

Length: 98 pages

Setting: London, mid 1800s

Summary: Short version: Dr. Jekyll develops a potion that liberates the evil elements of his personality Continue reading

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The Great Turkey Walk by Kathleen Karr

This was recommended as a read aloud by The Read Aloud Handbook.

Published: 1998

Genre: middle grade historical fiction

Length: 199 pages

Setting: 1860 walk from Missouri to Denver

Summary: Short version: Simon’s adventure as he walks a flock of turkeys from Missouri to Denver Continue reading

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The Emissary by Yoko Tawada

I heard about this on episode 187 of What Should I Read Next and was intrigued by the idea of post-apocalyptic Japanese science fiction. Since I’m trying to add more countries to my reading list, and it got me a T author, I decided to read it before the end of the year.

Published: 2014 in Japan, 2018 in the U.S.

Genre: post-apocalyptic science fiction

Length: 138 pages

Setting: a near future Japan

Summary: Short version: Yoshiro is raising his great-grandson in a post-apocalyptic Japan Continue reading

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