Book Review: Falling in Love with Hominids by Nalo Hopkinson
Genre: Fantasy, Science-Fiction, Short Stories
Publisher: Tachyon Publications (August 11, 2014; first published July 20th, 2015)
Author Information: Website | Twitter
Tiara’s Rating: 3 of 5 stars
Full Disclosure: A review copy of this comic was provided to me by Tachyon Publications via Netgalley. I would like to thank the publisher for providing me this opportunity. All opinions expressed from here forward are my own.
This is my second trip with Nalo Hopkinson. Last year, I read her novel Brown Girl in the Ring. I thought it was a magical book, but it took me a while to warm up to the main character. I enjoyed the book enough to know that I’d eventually get around to reading more of her work. Falling in Love with Hominids seemed to be the perfect book for that since it features short stories written by her, and I knew that meant I’d get a range of what she’s capable of as a writer. It houses speculative stories from serious to comedic, featuring such things as dryads and fire-breathing chickens (because they’re part dragon, duh!).
This review is going to be short and to the point, which is highly unusual for me, because I don’t want to spoil too many of the stories for potential readers.
There were a few stories in this book that left me thinking about them long after I’d read them, such as The Easthound, which reminded me of The Country of Ice Cream Star, but with a more sinister twist on what’s happening to the adults. Many of the stories, though, built up an anticipation in me that left me feeling slightly deflated once I got to the end and they didn’t deliver the punch I was expecting. With some of these stories, I enjoyed the idea of them more than I did the execution of them. I can really only thing of one story that I disliked out of the whole bunch (Blushing). I think Hopkinson has some great ideas, and I enjoy how she plays around with culture, myths, humor, and legends in her stories. However, I just seem to have a hard time connecting completely to her writing.
Despite that, I would recommend this for someone who wants to get a taste of Hopkinson’s work. She has a little bit of everything here for fans of speculative fiction. She’s a terrific writer, and my lack of connection to her work doesn’t reflect on her as writer. There are some authors who you just can’t make yourself love no matter how much you try. I won’t let this stop me from reading her other books, though. I like her books. I’m right on the line with her where one book could make all the difference between love and like.
Dunno, maybe, maybe not
Sorry this one didn’t get a higher rating. It is one I thought about requesting, but just never did. I do know what you mean about no connecting with a particular writer, but still being able to appreciate their skill. I’ve run into that with a couple of authors where I felt the book was well done, but something about the style/characters didn’t work for me personally.
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I wanted to rate it higher, and 3 stars isn’t necessarily a bad rating. I just still couldn’t connect to her writing, but she’s an excellent writer.
Occasionally I will buy a short story collection like this to check out authors that a new to me. I did want to check out The Country of Ice Cream Star, but I don’t know about this one… this collecting isn’t speaking to me
Hopkinson’s short story The Easthound made me think of The Country of Ice Cream Star because they both explore a world where weird things happen to the adults and the kids are left alone to fend for themselves. If you just need a taste of Hopkison, this might be the place to start, though.
I didn’t love Brown Girl in the Ring as much as I was hoping to, so I am pretty ready for a second round of Nalo Hopkinson too. Was thinking of picking up The Salt Roads…. but I’m tempted by the fire-breathing chickens.
I think this is a good way to taste all the different ways she can craft a story. I was thinking my next read from her might be Sister Mine, but I’ll have to look into The Salt Roads, too.