I don’t think I am like other people. I mean on some deep fundamental level. It’s not just being half a twin and reading a lot and seeing fairies…I think there’s a way I stand aside and look backwards at things when they’re happening which isn’t normal. It’s a thing you need to do for doing magic.I have gone through periods of my life when reading books has been the only force that has kept me from totally unraveling. Released earlier this year, Among Others by Jo Walton speaks to those of us who love science fiction books. The novel is part fantasy, part coming-of-age story, and part annotated reading list. It is introspective, gentle, and beautiful.
The novel, set in late 1979 and early 1980, is arranged as a series of diary entries. After running away from her mother’s house, fifteen year-old Mori is sent to live with her father, who abandoned her family when she was very young. He and his sisters immediately send her off to boarding school. Missing her recently dead sister, walking with a cane because of injuries, new to a school where the other girls have known one another for years, Mori is an outsider. She takes solace in her science fiction books and the fairies. As the story unfolds, she finds kindred spirits, her karass, and comes into her own as a young woman.
Among Others is a gem I found in the new book section of our library. The story is touching and in some ways reminds me of my younger self. I also had fun seeing books that I had read described in the story.