The Bruising of Qilwa

Tachyon. Aug. 2022. 176p. ISBN 9781616963781. Tr. FANTASY
DEBUT This debut fantasy novella featuring a nonbinary protagonist sets its intriguing medical mystery within a Persian-inspired world. The city-state of Qilwa has provided a reluctant welcome for Firuz-e Jafari and their refugee family. As a healer practicing forbidden magic, Firuz fears discovery but still offers a helping hand at one of the city’s few remaining free clinics, where they find a friend and mentor in the healer Kofi. But the plague that is ravaging Qilwa increases tensions about migrants flooding the city and creates reams of new rules and regulations for the clinic. When a strange, new disease starts killing people and results in bodies that are preserved while decomposing, Firuz has a medical mystery on their hands that will lead to the greatest dilemma that a healer can face—how much harm is acceptable in the race for a cure?
VERDICT The delicately interwoven complexity of the story, along with the loving portrait of Firuz and their found family, makes Jamnia’s fantasy puzzler a delight to read. Highly recommended, especially for fans of Katherine Addison’s The Witness for the Dead.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing