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NPR Review: THIS MORTAL COIL by Emily Suvada

Nothing quite signals the approaching end of the year like the number of reviews I have left to write. This is probably the last one I’ll do (though won’t be the last one to appear), and it’s fitting that it should be a review of a book that goes out with such a… Bang.

Here’s a (oh dear) taste:

9781481496339_custom-aea9f637232cd0c9070f196e1514909c620e5a98-s400-c85The Hydra virus literally makes people explode.

The resulting fine pink mist gets airborne and infects anyone within a mile radius — unless they’ve first immunized themselves by eating the flesh of the infected. In a neat reversal of the usual zombie-virus trope, the healthy have to eat the sick in order to stay alive — and keep eating them, because the immunity wears off after a few weeks.


I also really enjoyed reading this essay by Suvada in Nightmare magazine, about the anxieties of eating or not eating flesh. The last line absolutely thrilled and chilled me.

In other news, I’m reading Max Gladstone’s Ruin of Angels in stolen moments between deadlines and it’s so smart and so good and all the speaking characters are women and it’s breaking my heart a lot and I love it. Thinking a lot about the role art plays in the worldbuilding, and that I’d like to write something linking it to revelations we get in N. K. Jemisin’s The Stone Sky, because there is Cool Stuff Happening There.