Ninetail Gambit


I think this ticks off a few bingo squares – a Queer futuristic sci-fiKorean-centric military strategy and political intrigue. The science part in the sci-fi part is not explained well, but it is based on harnessing the physics of belief systems, and specifically belief in a ritualistic calendar with the main purpose of upholding a regime and traditional structure. Its interesting that the main purpose of the calendar in the book is not to uphold and respect beliefs, but to control massive populations in a space faring society.

The protagonist is a queer military officer who saves a few troops in a botched mission using her special math skills, and then as a punishment for not winning, is sent as a “volunteer” to lead a really difficult assault on a fortress occupied by “calendrical heretics”. In the process she is attached to the soul of a 400 year old dead general, who is also queer. The adventure takes them through the siege on the planet, their own philosophical conversations, and we get a few good plot twists along the way.

It’s not a fast read because it takes some energy to try to keep track of the references to the different types of sacred geometries, which in the end don’t really matter because none of the clues that the reader gets come through logical reasoning, just the narrative process.

The book is also extra fun because through learning the names of the different sects, I learned how to say fox, ash-hawk, moth, and raven in Korean

Here is the link to the author’s website:

I’m reading the next two books in the trilogy next!

4 comments on “Ninetail Gambit”

  1. What an interesting pick! Even if I don’t get to the book, your description captured my imagination. Physics of belief systems–what an intriguing idea. Thanks for the review.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. HAHA totally feel the same, Barbara –I love reading all the reviews here even though I rarely end up reading any of the books others read. This is the best book club because there is no pressure to read certain books or anything at all! And of course because it is filled with such lovely people all the book reviews are super interesting on their own!

      Liked by 1 person

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