Present Writers: Rosemary Kirstein

This is the latest in a recurring series! For more about the series, please read the original post on Marta Randall, or subsequent posts on Dorothy Heydt, Barbara Hambly, Jane Yolen, Suzy McKee Charnas, Sherwood Smith, Nisi Shawl, Pamela Dean,Gwyneth Jones , Caroline Stevermer, Patricia C. Wrede,Lois McMaster Bujold, Nancy Kress,Diane Duane, Candas Jane Dorsey, Greer Gilman,Robin McKinley,Laurie Marks, Ellen Kushner, and Delia Sherman.

The Steerswoman series. There are four out already, apparently Rosemary is at work on not one but two more (oh that is so hopeful), but the four that already exist make me so happy.

The thing about the Steerswoman books is that they are about people who are trying to figure out their world. They’re about people who value knowledge. And they’re about people who have actually followed through on what that means in practical terms and come to a lot of ideas about kindness and equality that serve advancing knowledge really well, that unfortunately a lot of people in our world don’t think ahead enough to get to. But one of the great things about books that are thoughtful about that kind of thing is that they encourage their readers to be more thoughtful too.

They are beautifully exploratory, these books. The protagonists are allowed to make extremely human mistakes in love and deduction and everything else that is important in life. And yet they keep on. In the face of sometimes staggering odds, they keep on. I only meant to reread the first two for this project, but now that I have, I just want to keep going–because they’re not just philosophically great, they’re also delightful page-turners, well-characterized and tightly plotted. I am over the moon to find that we have two more coming. I simply cannot wait for more of Kirstein’s work, and if you haven’t had the joy, run don’t walk to download the ebooks or order paper copies delivered from your nearest friendly struggling retailer.

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