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Happy Friday, shipmates! It’s Alex, with some news items to take you into the weekend and a list of some of my favorite SFF that’s been translated to English. My big adventure this coming weekend is I’m going to be attempting to clean out my closet via garage sale, including offloading some old books that I no longer want (including a seven book series by someone who shall not be named), which is a weird feeling after 2020. Hoping to see you on the other side with a bag of nickels and dimes and not too bad of a sunburn. Stay safe out there, space pirates, and I’ll see you next week for new releases!
News and Views
SFF eBook Deals
Agency by William Gibson for $1.99
Do You Dream of Terra-Two? by Temi Oh for $1.99
Beowulf: A New Translation by Maria Dahvana Headley for $2.99
On Book Riot
Free Association Friday: East Asian SFF in Translation
In celebration of English translations coming for three of Mo Xiang Tong Xiu’s novels, I wanted to highlight some of my favorite Chinese SFF in translation… and then I got overenthusiastic and wanted to throw a few more novels in here that I also love that aren’t Chinese. So it’s an East Asian SFF in translation smorgasbord!
Strange Beasts of China by Yan Ge
The fictional Chinese city of Yong’an is occupied by both humans and an astounding array of cryptids who live alongside them, mostly hidden. An amateur cryptozoologist sets out to document each one of these beasts, and along that journey is drawn into a deeper mystery that asks her to question her very self.
Broken Stars edited and translated by Ken Liu
An anthology of contemporary Chinese science fiction short stories in translation, translated by the inimitable Ken Liu. It’s got three essays within as well, examining the state of Chinese sci-fi and the fandom that’s grown up around it.
A Hero Born by Jin Yong, translated by Anna Holmwood
I have seen Jin Yong called “the Brandon Sanderson of China” which I think honestly downplays his reach a little bit. This is the first volume of an excellent and very famous wuxia series — one that involves Genghis-freaking-Khan — and to the best of my knowledge, a completely excellent translation.
A Summer Beyond Your Reach by Xia Jia, translated by Ken Liu, Emily Jin, Carmen Yiling Yan, and R.F. Kuang
A collection of SFF short stories by Xia Jia, launched using a Kickstarter by Clarkesworld, which has featured some of her stories before. You can read five of her stories over at Clarkesworld for free, actually, to get a taste for why this is a must-have collection.
I’m Waiting For You by Kim Bo-Young, translated by Sophie Bowman
A science fiction collection from Kim Bo-Young, but it’s not quite the typical set of separate stories. Rather, it’s four stories in one volume — two pairs of linked stories. One set is about an engaged couple trying to coordinate their relationship and wedding through space and time. The other is about godlike alien beings for whom humans are mere extensions of their will — and a rebellion against that order is coming.
Vampire Hunter D by Hideyuki Kikuchi, translated by Kevin Leahy
This is actually the first of a new omnibus that contains the first three of the Vampire Hunter D novels. (And there are a lot of these novels.) It’s a bonkers post-apocalyptic far future with vampire lords and a gothic sensibility, where D is an incredibly hot guy who hunts vampires and solves mysteries. I love this whole series.
The Book of Heroes by Miyuki Miyabe, translated by Alexander O. Smith
When Yuriko’s brother gets in a fight with bullies, that’s bad enough. But then he disappears, and she finds a magical book in his room in his place — The Book of Heroes, which has possessed him. She must unravel the mystery of the book in order to save her brother and defeat the evil King in Yellow.
All You Need Is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, translated by Joseph Reeder and Alexander O. Smith
The way-better-than-its-tepid-title-suggests film Edge of Tomorrow was based on this book, which is an excellent time loop action story about an alien invasion that the humans are fighting a losing battle against. And one of the new recruits, Keiji Kriya, gets sent back to the dawn of his final day alive every time he’s killed.
See you, space pirates. If you’d like to know more about my secret plans to dominate the seas and skies, you can catch me over at my personal site.