Geometries of Belonging

Fairwood. Nov. 2022. 268p. ISBN 9781958880012. pap. $18.99. FANTASY
Readers have the opportunity to further explore Lemberg’s Birdverse (which they previously wrote about in The Unbalancing and The Four Profound Weaves) in this newly collected selection of stories and poems. Across 11 pieces, multiple cultures connect their lives through introspective personal journeys and intersecting trade and politics, under their mutual worship of Bird. The elegant magic system, influenced by geometry and internal names, is brought to life in the detailed worldbuilding and characters. Lemberg’s prose opens readers to issues of societal and gender roles and class, then proceeds to break down almost every barrier they present. All of the writings give views into the intricate world created across the other Birdverse works, exploring the emotion and actions of varied plots spanning greedy rulers, refugees, families, and scholars. Lemberg’s three novelettes are highlights of this collection, including the original “Where Your Quince Trees Grow,” which focuses on characters descended from those featured in The Unbalancing.
VERDICT Lemberg once again presents their complex, beautiful Birdverse world in a collection of mostly previously published short works. Fans will enjoy having them all in one volume, while new readers will be introduced to a delightful fantasy anthology.
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