Nona the Ninth

Tor.com. (Locked Tomb, Bk. 3). Sept. 2022. 480p. ISBN 9781250854117. $28.99. SF
Nona feels she has a pretty good life: she loves her family, works with alot of people her age, gets to be around a nice dog almost every day, and hopes to celebrate her birthday with a party on the beach. Of course, all of this is overshadowed by the facts that her city—and the entire planet—is under threat of destruction; that the Emperor Undying may be coming; and that Pyrrha, Camilla, and Palamedes may care about her, but Nona is actually an intruder in someone else’s body. Everyone seems to think Nona can save them from the Nine Houses, but she knows that to do that may mean she has to give up everything, including her own existence. This uniquely poignant arc of a young woman’s search for an ordinary life within a very extraordinary world is both stunning in its simpler moments and shocking in its reveals. Readers get lost in the story lines, but Muir’s clever prose always provides a path to the end.
VERDICT Muir’s third entry in “The Locked Tomb” series (after Harrow the Ninth) is as immersive and original as its predecessors.
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