Due to the Recent Controversy, I Had to DNF This One... For Now? | Review: Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir

9:53 PM

I know, I know, I spent the better part of 2019 anticipating Gideon the Ninth. I mean, hello? Lesbian necromancers? Sign me up. Unfortunately, I had to shelf this one due to the recent controversies surrounding the author. (Sadly, this seems to be happening a lot? And just leaves a bad taste in my mouth.)


Gideon the Ninth is the most fun you'll ever have with a skeleton.

The Emperor needs necromancers.

The Ninth Necromancer needs a swordswoman.

Gideon has a sword, some dirty magazines, and no more time for undead bullshit.

Tamsyn Muir's Gideon the Ninth unveils a solar system of swordplay, cut-throat politics, and lesbian necromancers. Her characters leap off the page, as skillfully animated as necromantic skeletons. The result is a heart-pounding epic science fantasy.

Brought up by unfriendly, ossifying nuns, ancient retainers, and countless skeletons, Gideon is ready to abandon a life of servitude and an afterlife as a reanimated corpse. She packs up her sword, her shoes, and her dirty magazines, and prepares to launch her daring escape. But her childhood nemesis won't set her free without a service.

Harrowhark Nonagesimus, Reverend Daughter of the Ninth House and bone witch extraordinaire, has been summoned into action. The Emperor has invited the heirs to each of his loyal Houses to a deadly trial of wits and skill. If Harrowhark succeeds she will become an immortal, all-powerful servant of the Resurrection, but no necromancer can ascend without their cavalier. Without Gideon's sword, Harrow will fail, and the Ninth House will die.

Of course, some things are better left dead.

Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir 
Rating: ★☆☆☆

Gideon the Ninth was one of my most anticipated reads of 2019. How could it not be? The big sell of this novel was simple: lesbian necromancers. Obviously, this was a massive YES click and buy for me. Things were looking up the day that my pre-order of this arrived. When I finally found the time to sit down and start this, there was some buzz being tarnished via Twitter due to the scandal of Tamsyn Muir's prior fanfiction days.

It goes without saying that I began to grow nervous about reading Gideon the Ninth for many reasons. There was that lingering excitement about Muir's debut novel and the fact that it was offering up a queer ownvoices story of bad*ss women. And I'd heard nothing but good of the novel's action and wit. There was just this bad taste in my mouth over whether or not I wanted to read it, now, in the midst of all the drama.

Still, I started the novel with an uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach. My feelings were mixed on it. Which is not necessarily a testament to the novel or the author. It was all on me and my mood and how I couldn't help but wish I'd read this before the controversy. Ultimately, I struggled to connect with Gideon the Ninth and about halfway through it, I had to pause and just... step back.

Which is why it is on my DNF shelf. This is merely a goodbye for now. We'll see what the future holds for Gideon the Ninth and me.

 Find me on Instagram and/or Twitter.

You Might Also Like