This story bowled me over. Alix E Harrow builds a fascinating and strange world, breaking your heart in only a handful of pages.
Set on a world straddling the Mississippi River, with the civilised East determined to subdue, stabilise, and settle the wild and ever-changing West. This is not the analogy of the Wild West to which we are accustomed – the land literally changes. Geomorphology, ecosystems, wildlife – all transforming in real time. We follow a conflicted mapmaker of mixed parentage leading Easterner surveyors of the Imperial American River Company on expeditions west of the river. And most intriguingly, we learn why she does it.
It is an eerie tale of freedom and oppression. And it challenges our view of the land and what it means to be tied to it.
The Autobiography of a Traitor and a Half-Savage by Alix E Harrow can be read in full for free on the publisher’s website: https://www.tor.com/2016/12/14/the-autobiography-of-a-traitor-and-a-half-savage/
I do hope you check this out, it’s something special. Or if you’re looking for a full-length novel, check out my recent review of Alix E Harrow’s The Ten Thousand Doors of January.