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Well, it’s hump day, a day which never, in my long working experience, really lives up to its fun-sounding potential. Here I am again, sipping coffee, eating a raspberry-honey-buckwheat farinetta bread concoction I came up with, pretending I don’t feel compelled to check my inbox every ten minutes or so. Ah, the neurotic joys of querying. 🙂

On the plus side, I read an awesome book last night. And I do mean awesome. The kind where you get a bit choked up at the end, reread a few key scenes several times, and heave a deep sigh –yes, one of those, I know I’ve mentioned them before– when it’s done…

And think, quite seriously, that you might give a body part, and not just a small one like a toe but a big, important one, to be able to write something like that.

(Okay, well, some of you may have less gruesome versions of this wish. Blame it on me reading Stephen King at a very young and impressionable age.)

I know I’ve raved on about Guy Gavriel Kay before, so I’ll be brief: UNDER HEAVEN is an amazing, OMG-why-haven’t-you-read-this kind of book. Set in a fantasy version of China during the end of the Tang dynasty, the story has Kay’s signature sweeping scope and yet –classic Kay as well– the characters don’t suffer for this: they are vivid, heartfelt, and flawed — beautifully drawn, in other words. The world is flawlessly detailed.  The slow sense of inevitability that comes with the coup and subsequent war is wonderful, and the ending is everything you could ask for: desperately sad, bitter, and unexpectedly sweet. I’m going to stay here in vague-land, because I hate the idea that I’m ruining it for anyone — I’ll just say you’re missing out if you don’t read this, and also, that I’d like to be Guy Gavriel Kay when I grow up.

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