Reading roundup 01/02/23

Welcome to the first Reading Roundup post for February!

I have been struggling to read even ebooks over the last few weeks. My various health issues have been flaring up and these, together with difficult family matters, have resulted in a lack of ability to concentrate on reading books. I have been able to read online, but have found it too difficult to follow and remember complex plots and character names.

So, I only have one book to write about today. This is it…

Empire in Black and Gold by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Regular visitors to my Wednesday posts will know that I am a huge fan of Adrian Tchaikovsky’s books. So far, I have read most of his science fiction works and have praised them on here and Goodreads. A short time ago, I decided to try his earlier fantasy writing and Empire in Black and Gold, #01 Shadows of the Apt, was the book that I chose.

Here is the blurb:

“The days of peace are over . . .

The city states of the Lowlands have lived in peace and prosperity for decades: bastions of civilization and sophistication. That peace is about to end.

In far-off corners, an ancient Empire has been conquering city after city with its highly trained armies and sophisticated warmaking . . . And now it’s set its sights on a new prize.

Only the ageing Stenwold Maker, spymaster, artificer and statesman, can see the threat. It falls upon his shoulders to open the eyes of his people – as soon a tide will sweep down over the Lowlands and burn away everything in its path.

But first he must stop himself from becoming the Empire’s latest victim.”

I finished reading the book a few minutes ago and wrote the following response on Goodreads with a rating of four out of five stars:

Empire in Black and Gold (Shadows of the Apt, #1)Empire in Black and Gold by Adrian Tchaikovsky
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was an enjoyable read that improved as the story unfolded. I struggled with it a bit at the beginning. Getting used to the strange insect/human crossovers was quite odd to start with, but the characters began to interest me more and more as the plot became increasingly exciting. As is usual with this brilliant author, his amazing imagination is fully on display in this book. I felt so drawn in to his world.

I understand that there are ten books in the series, which will keep me going for a while! On the whole, I prefer Tchaikovsky’s science fiction writing, but, perhaps this series will win me over. After all, these are his earlier books.

View all my reviews

As I read more books in the series, I will take a break now and then with other books, otherwise it might drive some of you lovely visitors away! I had better go and see what is waiting for me on the Library ebook app…

Happy Reading to you all!

Love and best wishes,



About The Librain

Retired School Librarian
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