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The Menace from Earth

By Fiona Gregory, editor

Jan 5, 2013: This is a brilliant, unusual work; a triumph of world building. In some ways it shadows how the feudal Japanese culture reacted to their first encounters with Europeans during the Edo period (although the Al-Naidoori seem more gentle!). Without a doubt, it is exquisite writing. The only problem I had with it was I felt some interesting plot elements (including those centred around the black blossom of the title) were glossed over or left unexplained, in favour of focusing on the relationship of the two protagonists. Or perhaps I just did not fully understand – a known hazard for aliens dealing with the Al-Naidoori.

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