The Mimicking of Known Successes

Tor.com. Mar. 2023. 176p. ISBN 9781250860507. $19.99. SF
Combining planetary resettlement SF with steampunk, mystery, climate fiction, and a touch of romance, Older’s (State Tectonics) newest moves from a remote train station over a gas giant planet to the halls of academia as a case of a missing scholar reunites investigator Mossa with her former lover Pleiti. Soon the case evolves into a vast conspiracy to speed up humanity’s repatriation to an Earth that is still not survivable—in the hopes of hurrying the day when it will be. The investigation ranges from the hallowed halls of academe to a barely functioning spaceport as the duo collects clues, gets attacked by suspects, and takes a second chance at the best thing either of them ever had—even if they have to stay in exile to keep it.
VERDICT Recommended for readers who enjoy a bit of mystery mixed with their SF (like Mary Robinette Kowal’s recent The Spare Man and Eddie Robson’s Drunk on All Your Strange New Words) and anyone who cannot resist a Sherlock Holmes pastiche.
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