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The Black Tides of Heaven by JY Yang
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The Black Tides of Heaven (2017)

by JY Yang

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: The Tensorate Series (book 1)

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4182139,357 (3.8)30
"Mokoya and Akeha, the twin children of the Protector, were sold to the Grand Monastery as infants. While Mokoya developed her strange prophetic gift, Akeha was always the one who could see the strings that moved adults to action. While Mokoya received visions of what would be, Akeha realized what could be. What's more, they saw the sickness at the heart of their mother's Protectorate. A rebellion is growing. The Machinists discover new levers to move the world every day, while the Tensors fight to put them down and preserve the power of the state. Unwilling to continue as a pawn in their mother's twisted schemes, Akeha leaves the Tensorate behind and falls in with the rebels. But every step Akeha takes towards the Machinists is a step away from Mokoya. Can Akeha find peace without shattering the bond they share with their twin?"--Publisher's description.… (more)
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» See also 30 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 21 (next | show all)
My response to this novella was that it was interesting but only interesting. Perhaps matters will come deeper into focus if I read more of the set of novellas of which this is a part but I come away with the sense that the author is trying a little too hard to play with the stuff of fable and legend and I'm not feeling as moved as I would like. Or, to put it another way, the siblings Mokoya & Akeha are fine but their dictatorial mother feels only like a set-piece prop to be reacted against, because that is what one does. ( )
  Shrike58 | Sep 25, 2019 |
Currently free to download in mobi or epub format from Tor.com until 11/16/18! You just have to sign up for the newsletter if you're not already.
  Jeeps | Sep 21, 2019 |
This novella was uneven. I know this is the first in a series, but The black tides of heaven felt incomplete in ways I don’t expect first-in-series books to be.

In terms of world-building it felt as though there was too much going on: there’s a magical system (think The Force filtered through Five-Elements-style categories) that exists alongside real-world technology; there’s the secondary-world history, where fairly standard imperialist conquerors lord it over the down-trodden conquered; there’s various factions and ethnic groupings, not all of which were clearly introduced; and there’s the gender setup, where children are “they” until about 17 when they choose their gender and doctors magic their bodies into the appropriate forms. Some of these things were organically worked into the narrative, but others were dumped into it at the three-quarters point. This novella felt like it should have been expanded into something a bit longer.

With so much going on in the background, the main plot skips and jumps from event to event. Chapters are named after the twin protagonists’ ages (the sixth year, the seventeenth year), and while the plot and intrigue are interesting enough in their own right, the episodic nature of the narrative makes it hard to appreciate things like character development and motivation. Here, too, this novella felt as though it should have been longer than it was. ( )
  Petroglyph | Jun 17, 2019 |
I enjoyed this novella. The world building was unique and fun to read about. I liked the characters - they were complicated, interesting, and felt genuine to me. I felt like this first novella gives the reader an interesting peak into a complex world and I look forward to reading more about it in subsequent books in the series. ( )
  Cora-R | May 22, 2019 |
The world building and the representation of gender expression are both very good, but the plot wasn't great, I think because the book is short but it spans such a long period of time that the narrative points pass by quickly and don't hold enough weight. ( )
  xiaomarlo | Apr 17, 2019 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Yang, JYAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Shimizu, YukoCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To my queer family, who chill with me in the Slack
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