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The Citadel of Weeping Pearls by Aliette de…
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The Citadel of Weeping Pearls (original 2015; edition 2017)

by Aliette de Bodard (Author)

Series: Xuya Universe, chronological (21st-22nd century), Xuya Universe (short story)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
986213,030 (3.86)10
The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting edge technology and esoteric sciences--its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly. Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again. But now the Dai Viet Empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate needs of its weapons. Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her thirty years back, to the height of the Citadel's power. But the Citadel's disappearance still extends chains of grief and regrets all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences... A new book set in the award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe.… (more)
Member:quondame
Title:The Citadel of Weeping Pearls
Authors:Aliette de Bodard (Author)
Info:JABberwocky Literary Agency, Inc. (2019), 166 pages
Collections:F&SF, Read but unowned
Rating:***1/2
Tags:2021

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The Citadel of Weeping Pearls by Aliette de Bodard (2015)

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Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
A war is brewing, a scientist disappears from her laboratory, a general with the Empress's favor but otherwise despised at court investigates the what connection the disappearance has with the long lost exiled daughter of the Empress who had or was a terrible weapon. The feeling come across as real but this can only be a fragment in search of a whole. ( )
  quondame | Apr 8, 2021 |
Another of Alicette's somewhat weird short stories. I come across them here and there, but I think I'm going to try to stick to the longer lengths or at least a collection if I can find them, because this doesn't really work for me. It's too short to introduce the complexities of the world-building and character interactions properly, especially featuring something as difficult as time-travel which needs incredible subtlety to do properly. There are hints that Alicette has thought it through in all of it's possible intricacies, but by then the story is over.

The imperial family has lost one of it's scientists who was on the search for a daughter missing many decades back. A blunt soldier is tasked with the investigation, but before it can all be thought through a neighbouring power invades.

It's all very clever and delicate, but needs a lot more background. ( )
  reading_fox | Apr 1, 2021 |
Although I didn't love this story as much as I loved [b:On a Red Station, Drifting|17182955|On a Red Station, Drifting|Aliette de Bodard|https://images.gr-assets.com/books/1356531127s/17182955.jpg|23630347], it was still cool and de Bodard managed to make a story about a leading scientist's disappearance and time travel really be about interpersonal relationships between siblings and mothers and daughters. ( )
  natcontrary | Jun 22, 2020 |
Very enjoyable space opera novella. I love the universe de Bodard has created here, though I think some of my occasional confusion about terms was due to this being one of the later stories written in the world. (AKA I need to read more of the earlier stories before continuing to read the newer ones.) Still, the characters and plot were nicely developed, and while there are some plot points which weren't concluded it seems those are series plot. The book's plot was resolved very nicely at the end of the novella. ( )
1 vote ca.bookwyrm | May 18, 2020 |
The Citadel of Weeping Pearls is focused on 4 viewpoint characters and is structured so each chapter is from the viewpoint of a different character. We have The Officer - an ex-soldier and former lover of the Empress, he is now investigating the disappearance of a scientist who has been tasked with finding the Empress's daughter who disappeared many years ago on the habitat called The Citadel of Weeping Pearls. There is The Empress - worried about the succession, the best candidate is her vanished daughter, and a threatened civil war where her daughter's scientific researches would tip the balance in the Empire's favour. The Engineer is a scientist working in a frontier habitat; her family was destroyed when The Citadel of Weeping Pearls vanished taking her mother with it. The Younger Sister is another daughter of the Empress, younger than the vanished princess, and mentally scarred by her disappearance. Entwined in the story are The Turtle's Golden Claw - a shipmind whose mother was The Younger Sister and Lady Linh - one of the Empress' mem-implants (and the viewpoint character in On a Red Station, Drifting).

Recommended
1 vote Maddz | Apr 14, 2019 |
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There was a sound, on the edge of sleep: Suu Nuoc wasn't sure if it was a bell and a drum calling for enlightenment; or the tactics-master sounding the call to arms; in that breathless instant - hanging like a bead of blood from a sword's blade - that marked the boundary between the stylised life of the court and the confused, lawless fury of the battlefield.
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The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting edge technology and esoteric sciences--its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly. Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again. But now the Dai Viet Empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate needs of its weapons. Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her thirty years back, to the height of the Citadel's power. But the Citadel's disappearance still extends chains of grief and regrets all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences... A new book set in the award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe.

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