Among Others [NOOK Book]


Winner of the 2011 Nebula Award for Best Novel

Winner of the 2012 Hugo Award for Best Novel
Startling, unusual, and yet irresistably readable, Among Others is at once the compelling story of a young woman struggling to escape a troubled childhood, a brilliant diary of first encounters with the great novels of modern fantasy and SF, and a spellbinding tale of escape from ancient enchantment.

Raised by a ...

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Among Others

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Winner of the 2011 Nebula Award for Best Novel

Winner of the 2012 Hugo Award for Best Novel
Startling, unusual, and yet irresistably readable, Among Others is at once the compelling story of a young woman struggling to escape a troubled childhood, a brilliant diary of first encounters with the great novels of modern fantasy and SF, and a spellbinding tale of escape from ancient enchantment.

Raised by a half-mad mother who dabbled in magic, Morwenna Phelps found refuge in two worlds. As a child growing up in Wales, she played among the spirits who made their homes in industrial ruins. But her mind found freedom and promise in the science fiction novels that were her closest companions. Then her mother tried to bend the spirits to dark ends, and Mori was forced to confront her in a magical battle that left her crippled—and her twin sister dead.
Fleeing to her father whom she barely knew, Mori was sent to boarding school in England-a place all but devoid of true magic. There, outcast and alone, she tempted fate by doing magic herself, in an attempt to find a circle of like-minded friends. But her magic also drew the attention of her mother, bringing about a reckoning that could no longer be put off…
Combining elements of autobiography with flights of imagination in the manner of novels like Jonathan Lethem's The Fortress of Solitude, this is potentially a breakout book for an author whose genius has already been hailed by peers like Kelly Link, Sarah Weinman, and Ursula K. Le Guin.
One of School Library Journal's Best Adult Books 4 Teens titles of 2011
One of io9's best Science Fiction&Fantasy books of the year 2011

Winner of the 2012 Hugo Award for Best Novel
Winner of the 2011 Nebula Award for Best Novel

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Editorial Reviews

Elizabeth Hand
…beautifully written…More than anything else, Among Others is a love letter to the literature of the fantastic and to SF fandom.
—The Washington Post
Jeff VanderMeer
It's a brave act to write a novel that is in ­essence all aftermath, but Walton succeeds admirably. Her novel is a wonder and a joy.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
World Fantasy Award–winner Walton (Tooth and Claw) turns the magical boarding school story inside out in this compelling coming-of-age tale. Welsh teen Morwenna was badly hurt, and her twin sister killed, when the two foiled their abusive mother's spell work. Seeking refuge with a father she barely knows in England, Mori is shunted off to a grim boarding school. Mori works a spell to find kindred souls and soon meets a welcoming group of science fiction readers, but she can feel her mother looking for her, and this time Mori won't be able to escape. Walton beautifully captures the outsider's yearning in Mori's earthy and thoughtful journal entries: "It doesn't matter. I have books, new books, and I can bear anything as long as there are books." Never deigning to transcend the genre to which it is clearly a love letter, this outstanding (and entirely teen-appropriate) tale draws its strength from a solid foundation of sense-of-wonder and what-if. (Jan.)
From the Publisher
“ A wonder and a joy.”

The New York Times

“ Compelling… Never deigning to transcend the genre to which it is clearly a love letter, this outstanding (and entirely teen-appropriate) tale draws its strength from a solid foundation of sense-of-wonder and what-if.”

—Publishers Weekly, starred review

“ Beautifully crafted… Among Others calls to those who desire a wild, magical world in place of the one they have but eventually learn that their own lives are the greatest story of all."

—Bloomsbury Review

“ There are the books you want to give all your friends, and there are the books you wish you could go back and give your younger self. And then there's the rare book, like Jo W alton's Among Others, that's both.”


“An utterly amazing and beautiful book.”

RT Book Reviews, Top Pick

ALAN Review - Annalise Miyashiro
After confronting her mother in a tragic battle that leads to her twin sister's death, Morwenna "Mor" Phelps struggles to establish a relationship with her estranged father and adjust to her posh boarding school in England. At school, she would rather be feared than tormented for her Welsh accent and crippled leg. She struggles to recover from childhood with an insane mother who dabbles in witchcraft. Mor seeks solace in science fiction, and things take a turn for the better when she joins a SF book club. Mor, with a bit of magic and support from her books and friends, makes strides toward moving on with her life. For science fiction fans, this is a must read; Walton references many SF books and authors. Those familiar with these references will appreciate them. The book is written in journal format and would be appropriate for ages 13 and up. Reviewer: Annalise Miyashiro
Children's Literature - Lois Rubin Gross
Walton is not playing fairly. She has written a book about science fiction that is not science fiction. It is a fantasy, but plays hide and seek through a fairy world. It extols the virtues of libraries and librarians and will, undoubtedly, take its place on library shelves where dedicated librarians will hand it to teenagers who feel as much like misfits as the heroine, Morwenna Phelps. In 1979, Morwenna (known as Mori) is sent away to a British boarding school to separate her from her mad mother who has caused the death of Morwenna's twin. In her Welsh home, Mori has visited with fairies and done their bidding, but in the mundane school atmosphere, Mori struggles to hold on to her magical powers and gain control over the crippling pain, a result of the same accident that killed her sister. She retreats into science fiction and gorges on the entirety of the genre written to that time. So, while this book is not itself science fiction, it will send intrigued readers scampering to the stacks for Heinlein, Zelazny, and LeGuin. Mori's life is enriched by a book group where she meets another outcast named Wim, a working class boy with whom she forms a bond, both magical and physical. It is Wim's friendship that pulls Mori back from the abyss when fairies beckon her to rejoin her sister in death. For more than half the book, readers will battle with the question of whether Mori's magic is real or imagined, but the final chapters answer the question most satisfactorily. This is a book for mature readers because it skirts the issues of teenage sex and sexuality. However, it presents some strong adult models that treat teens as equals, and is much more than the problem novels that Mori abhors. It is a book that will weave an extraordinary spell for many readers searching for a fictional soul mate. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross
VOYA - Ruth Cox Clark
Walton, a World Fantasy Award recipient, has deftly created a realistic late 1970s setting where science fiction and fantasy meld. Readers are right next to fifteen-year-old Morwenna, peering into the woods to find the fairies (not pretty ones either) that she can communicate with. After a terrible accident brought about by her black-magic-obsessed mother who killed Morwenna's twin sister, she flees Wales to live with her estranged English father. Instead, her prim and proper aunts, who Morwenna is sure are witches, send her to an English boarding school. Crippled from the accident and grieving her sister's death, this lonely teen finds solace in books: "There are books you can fall into and pull over your head." Against her better judgment, Morwenna uses magic to find like-minded friends and shortly after, with the help of her boarding school librarian, joins a book club of fellow science fiction and fantasy lovers where she feels welcome. Morwenna returns to Wales for the holidays and the inevitable battle with her mother. Readers learn intimate details of Morwenna's past and current life via heartbreaking and starkly honest journal entries peppered with title and author references. Science fiction readers will want a notebook handy to jot them down, but they can also be skimmed by readers who are not fans of these genres. Morwenna is a complex, quirky character who readers will quickly be drawn to as they join her on her quest of self-discovery. Reviewer: Ruth Cox Clark
Library Journal
World Fantasy Award winner Walton (Tooth and Claw) spins an enchanting tale filled with libraries and magic through the pages of a young woman's diary. Morwenna and her twin, Morganna, spent their childhood sur-rounded by Welsh ruins and fairies. Torn from her sister and hiding from her crazy mother, Morwenna finds herself in the care of her estranged father and his eerily controlling sisters. Surrounded by things strange and unfamiliar, she struggles to find safety and balance through protective magic, enigmatic fairies, and the pages of sf and fantasy novels. Interlibrary loan privileges, a book club at the public library, and the handsome and disreputable Wim help Morwenna manage the cruelty of classmates and evade her mother's sorcerous clutches. But even protective magic leaves a trail, and Morwenna ends up fighting for her life and everything she's come to believe.Verdict A delightful reminder of the wonder and power of books and the libraries that keep them.—Jennifer Anderson, Texas A&M Univ.-Corpus Christi
The Barnes & Noble Review

From Paul Di Filippo's "THE SPECULATOR" column on The Barnes & Noble Review

The writer of fantasy or science fiction set in recognizable milieus -- contemporary times, or the near future -- faces a bit of a dilemma when depicting characters who enjoy reading, and whose personas have been molded by books. The writer can, within his own fiction, either allude to the actual existing literature of the fantastic (or to invented analogues), or ignore the field entirely. To take the first tack -- which offers a delightful and sometimes profound sense of connection to the shared world of books -- risks not only puncturing the reader's suspension of disbelief, but the possibility of becoming nerdily recursive, prey to in-jokes and cliquishness.

On the other hand, to pretend in a work of fantasy that fantasy literature doesn't exist, or simply to omit mention of same, is not only an easier task, it lends one's work a kind of sovereign majesty: the occult adventures I am recounting are tangible and real and unprecedented, not just some imaginary book such as those other chaps write! The naïve protagonist who is unaware of the tropes of fantastika can display reactions that a character well versed in these devices cannot logically exhibit.

Of the two approaches, I favor the first. As John Crowley has said of his own impeccable fantasies, "My books are made of other books." To embed a new work of fantasy explicitly in the long and honorable lineage of such books is, to some degree, to inherit a portion of the ancestral magic. It's not cheating or theft, if the new author lives up to her predecessors.

Such is the case with Jo Walton's Among Others, to an unprecedented degree. A story in the form of diary entries from a gawky, brainy, crippled UK teen named Mori Phelps, the novel features at least one mention of a fantasy or SF novel per page, and oftentimes more. (Some non-genre works play their part as well, and in fact Mori has the kind of eclectic adolescent tastes that can encompass Roger Zelazny in one breath and T. S. Eliot in the next.) These beloved books constitute Mori's lifeline to sanity and sheer existence. She's an inveterate, habitual reader, who would (or so she thinks for a while) rather have a new book than a boyfriend. An isolated soul at the mercy of her strange family and past; a nerd, a loner, a girl otaku. In short, a card-carrying member of the actual potential audience for this very book. Walton has chosen to plunge unashamedly into geekdom, and somehow turned this heartfelt catalogue of pop culture into art, a naturalistic representation of the species. Admittedly quasi-autobiographical, Among Others still attains the proper distance and clear-sightedness to transcend self-indulgence and self-pity.

It's not so much that Among Others as a narrative is made of books, but that Mori herself is in large part constituted of printed words. Her soul and mentality have integrated great chunks of fictive lessons and virtual experiences into themselves, as life-saving measures. Mori is under the care of her milquetoast, formerly absent father, having escaped the mad mother she deems a practicing witch, who was responsible for the death of Mori's twin sister in a car accident. Able to see fairies, Mori realizes that the world is a larger and more mysterious place than most people admit, and only SF and fantasy tales allow her to make sense of the big universe.

Because we experience everything through Mori's narration, we are forced to consider her reliability. Walton cleverly, with the hallowed fictional game of is-she-mad-or-isn't-she?, accentuates the dilemma with several telling allusions. Why doesn't the otherwise omnivorous Mori like the work of Philip K. Dick, for instance? Could it be that Dick's delusional protagonists, with their weak grip on reality, hit too close to home? When toward the close of the book, Mori's new boyfriend sees fairies too, the scales appear to tip in her favor. But then again, we only have Mori's report and interpretation of his behavior.

Ultimately, however, questions about whether Mori's fairies are real or a coping mechanism for a broken home, and whether her mother is a literal witch or not, are concerns that fade away in the face of her struggle to fashion a self that is authentic and able to confront the harshness of the world.

Set in 1979, long before the distractions of the Internet and DVDs, long before the etherization of books into bytes, this novel chronicles a vanished age when books had to be won at great costs, and consequently meant so much more. Could a similar biography unfold today? Only if fantasy continues to resonate with those for whom consensus reality is always achingly unsatisfactory.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781429991520
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 1/18/2011
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 53,880
  • File size: 279 KB

Meet the Author

JO WALTON's novel Tooth and Claw won the World Fantasy Award, and the novels of her Small Change sequence—Farthing, Ha'penny, and Half a Crown—have won acclaim ranging from national newspapers to the Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award. A native of Wales, she lives in Montreal.

Jo Walton won the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer on publication of her debut novel The King's Peace. She won the World Fantasy Award in 2004 for Tooth and Claw, and in 2012, the Hugo and Nebula Awards for Among Others. In addition to writing SF and fantasy, she has also designed role-playing games and published poetry. Her song "The Lurkers Support Me In Email" has been quoted innumerable times in online discussions all over the world, frequently without attribution. A native of Wales, she lives in Montreal.
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Read an Excerpt

The Phurnacite factory in Abercwmboi killed all the trees for two miles around. We’d measured it on the mileometer. It looked like something from the depths of hell, black and looming with chimneys of flame, reflected in a dark pool that killed any bird or animal that drank from it. The smell was beyond description. We always wound up the car windows as tight as tight when we had to pass it, and tried to hold our breath, but Grampar said nobody could hold their breath that long, and he was right. There was sulphur in that smell, which was a hell chemical as everyone knew, and other, worse things, hot unnameable metals and rotten eggs.
My sister and I called it Mordor, and we’d never been there on our own before. We were ten years old. Even so, big as we were, as soon as we got off the bus and started looking at it we started holding hands.
It was dusk, and as we approached the factory loomed blacker and more terrible than ever. Six of the chimneys were alight; four belched out noxious smokes.
“Surely it is a device of the Enemy,” I murmured.
Mor didn’t want to play. “Do you really think this will work?”
“The fairies were sure of it,” I said, as reassuringly as possible.
“I know, but sometimes I don’t know how much they understand about the real world.”
“Their world is real,” I protested. “Just in a different way. At a different angle.”
“Yes.” She was still staring at the Phurnacite, which was getting bigger and scarier as we approached. “But I don’t know how much they understand about the angle of the every day world. And this is definitely in that world. The trees are dead. There isn’t a fairy for miles.”
“That’s why we’re here,” I said.
We came to the wire, three straggly strands, only the top one barbed. A sign on it read “No Unauthorised Admittance. Beware Guard Dogs.” The gate was far around the other side, out of sight.
“Are there dogs?” she asked. Mor was afraid of dogs, and dogs knew it. Perfectly nice dogs who would play with me would rouse their hackles at her. My mother said it was a method people could use to tell us apart. It would have worked, too, but typically of her, it was both terrifyingly evil and just a little crazily impractical.
“No,” I said.
“How do you know?”
“It would ruin everything if we go back now, after having gone to all this trouble and come this far. Besides, it’s a quest, and you can’t give up on a quest because you’re afraid of dogs. I don’t know what the fairies would say. Think of all the things people on quests have to put up with.” I knew this wasn’t working. I squinted forward into the deepening dusk as I spoke. Her grip on my hand had tightened. “Besides, dogs are animals. Even trained guard dogs would try to drink the water, and then they’d die. If there really were dogs, there would be at least a few dog bodies at the side of the pool, and I don’t see any. They’re bluffing.”
We crept below the wire, taking turns holding it up. The still pool was like old unpolished pewter, reflecting the chimney flames as unfaithful wavering streaks. There were lights below them, lights the evening shift worked by.
There was no vegetation here, not even dead trees. Cinders crunched underfoot, and clinker and slag threatened to turn our ankles. There seemed to be nothing alive but us. The star-points of windows on the hill opposite seemed ridiculously out of reach. We had a school friend who lived there, we had been to a party once, and noticed the smell, even inside the house. Her father worked at the plant. I wondered if he was inside now.
At the edge of the pool we stopped. It was completely still, without even the faintest movement of natural water. I dug in my pocket for the magic flower. “Have you got yours?”
“It’s a bit crushed,” she said, fishing it out. I looked at them. Mine was a bit crushed too. Never had what we were doing seemed more childish and stupid than standing in the centre of that desolation by that dead pool holding a pair of crushed pimpernels the fairies had told us would kill the factory.
I couldn’t think of anything appropriate to say. “Well, un, dai, tri!” I said, and on “Three” as always we cast the flowers forward into the leaden pool, where they vanished without even a ripple. Nothing whatsoever happened. Then a dog barked far away, and Mor turned and ran and I turned and pelted after her.
“Nothing happened,” she said, when we were back on the road, having covered the distance back in less than a quarter of the time it had taken us as distance out.
“What did you expect?” I asked.
“The Phurnacite to fall and become a hallowed place,” she said, in the most matter-of-fact tone imaginable. “Well, either that or huorns.”
I hadn’t thought of huorns, and I regretted them extremely. “I thought the flowers would dissolve and ripples would spread out and then it would crumble to ruin and the trees and ivy come swarming over it while we watched and the pool would become real water and a bird would come and drink from it and then the fairies would be there and thank us and take it for a palace.”
“But nothing at all happened,” she said, and sighed. “We’ll have to tell them it didn’t work tomorrow. Come on, are we going to walk home or wait for a bus?”
It had worked, though. The next day, the headline in the Aberdare Leader was “Phurnacite Plant Closing: Thousands of Jobs Lost.”
*   *   *
I’m telling that part first because it’s compact and concise and it makes sense, and a lot of the rest of this isn’t that simple.
Think of this as a memoir. Think of it as one of those memoirs that’s later discredited to everyone’s horror because the writer lied and is revealed to be a different colour, gender, class and creed from the way they’d made everybody think. I have the opposite problem. I have to keep fighting to stop making myself sound more normal. Fiction’s nice. Fiction lets you select and simplify. This isn’t a nice story, and this isn’t an easy story. But it is a story about fairies, so feel free to think of it as a fairy story. It’s not like you’d believe it anyway.

Copyright © 2010 by Jo Walton

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 63 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 63 Customer Reviews
  • Posted January 29, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Wonderfully done.

    I love so much about this book.

    I love that it's character-driven rather than plot-driven. Nothing particularly happens in this novel -- a girl goes to boarding school, is shunned, writes and reads a lot, and eventually finds a few friends; the "reckoning that could no longer be put off" takes place within the confines of the last few pages, and feels. . . on the whole, slightly unnecessary. Anyone who wants action should look elsewhere. This book takes place almost entirely within the confines of Mori's head, and I love that. I love that it's about grieving, and that it's about identity, and that it's about making the best of your seriously messed up family.

    I love that it's about books, and that Mori engages with books, has forceful opinions about them that the reader is clearly allowed to disagree with. I haven't actually read most of the books Mori talks about (somehow I've read lots of stuff from the 60s and from the 80s on, but precious little from the 70s) but my background knowledge of the authors was enough that I didn't feel like I missed anything. Probably the only work any reader has to be familiar with is Kurt Vonnegut's Cat's Cradle, because Mori uses the terms "karass" and "granfalloon" a lot before she explains them to an outsider -- but even those terms are fairly clear from the context.

    I love the way the magic works. . . no flashes or puffs of smoke to let you know something has happened, just a sudden string of coincidences (going back long before you cast your spell) leading to the outcome you wanted. It's the sort of magic I think makes sense in a contemporary setting with our history, and it's the sort of magic I wish there was more of in fantasy, because it seems so much more magical than the magic-by-numbers currently popular. And yes, it IS magic: Mori thinks so, and the author says so, so I see no reason to question that fact.

    But somehow. . . I did not quite love this book. Maybe it's because I wasn't particularly alienated as a teenager. Maybe it's because I wanted just a little bit more. . . magic, in Mori's voice, to carry through some of the boarding school drama. Or maybe this is one of those books that will hit me harder the further I get from it -- it certainly has that potential. I expected to love this book, and maybe that's why I didn't; very little can live up to the level of expectation produced by the knowledge that there's a new book by a favorite author that's getting tons of praise from other favorite authors. Whatever the case. . . I will absolutely recommend this to anyone who likes the stuff I laid out above. It's absolutely going on my keeper shelf, and I'm glad I bought it in hardcover. But it isn't quite a book that immediately carved out a place in my soul.

    6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 20, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A moving & Fascinating tale

    In Wales their single mother's spell goes terribly wrong when her daughters interfered by trying to thwart the incantation. Teen Morwenna survives but is severely hurt; her twin sister was not as fortunate as she dies.

    Mori flees her raging mother's wrath seeking shelter with her father in England. He welcomes his daughter by immediately shipping her off to a boarding school. Feeling alone, Mori employs a spell seeking souls like her own who escape their troubles with literature. This leads her to a science fiction readers club, but Mori has no time to make friends. She senses her irate mother searches for her to kill her. Mori concludes she has no way to elude her mother much longer and has no place to hide; as her father made his feelings perfectly clear when she first arrived at his home seeking shelter and protection.

    Mori makes the tale with her journal focusing on her loneliness and her obsessive need to belong especially since her only friend, her twin, is dead. The teen is realistic and believes she can never truly belong though she yearns for such; as anyone who befriends her becomes instant fodder for her insane mother's wrath. That is why books are her friends. Readers will be hooked by Mori's lament that she will never really belong Among Others though that is her strongest need (Dr. Maslow would have loved to interview Mori, but her insane mom better had not found out); in many ways more so than surviving the anticipated showdown with her mother.

    Harriet Klausner

    6 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 13, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Giving up.

    I thought this was going to be a great read. Quiet suspense, maybe? A whole paragraph about a bus? Really? All these book names became very tiresome. I realize the plot is supposed to be about this girl, her losses, struggles, love of SF and fairies, but wow. "The Sisters Grimm" was more exciting. Half way thru and putting it down to read something else. Maybe just skip to the end to get it over with. Something I NEVER do, by the way.

    5 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 16, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I have no idea why this book has been awarded the Nebula and Hug

    I have no idea why this book has been awarded the Nebula and Hugo awards. These prizes are a disservice to the author and to the reader of this novel, for they set high expectations that the book utterly fails to satisfy.

    This is not a book with a plot or any big ideas. It's a story of a teenage fascination with science fiction of the late 70's. Those readers who, like me, are contemporaries of the heroine will enjoy the many references to the fun books that were published then -- but they'll also notice that the book is way more of a bibliography, for apart from the odd quote, it doesn't really seem as if the heroine has actually learned anything thought-provoking from her reading. Dune is a clash of cultures? Gosh, that would never have occurred to me.

    If you are 45 or older, you may enjoy being reminded of all those great books that didn't survive to the ebook era. If you are 15 or younger, you might relate to the heroine or author. And those of you in that big gap in between are going to be left scratching your head at the awards this two-star book has received. It says more about the state of science fiction than anything else, I suppose.

    4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 22, 2012


    Anyone who has lived a period in which books are your only friend and guidance will understand the protagonist...imagination can be both magical and terrible at the same time and books give yoibyhe intellectual and emotional tools to take it either and both ways at the samw time.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 1, 2011

    Literary and engaging

    A coming of age story with magical realism. I really enjoyed it.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 10, 2012

    Worst book ever! I want a refund and my brain wiped of this crap.

    This book is so bad, I may stop reading SF. And it won an award??

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 1, 2012

    Great syllabus for future reading

    The book is a fantasy at heart but the protagonist's process of maturing through her experience of seminal works of science fiction was great fun.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2012

    Nebula Award Winner for Best SF Novel of the year.

    Nebula Award Winner for Best SF Novel of the year.

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 10, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    This cover is absolutely captivating. The bold orange tones soft

    This cover is absolutely captivating. The bold orange tones softened just a touch with white draws the eye to the book and raises ones curiosity to its contents. Orange is a stimulating color, one of change between two mediums and is quite a sociable also, invigorating people to think and talk. My first impression was a book about a girl swept up into a fantasy world of magic. After reading the book, the cover captures the story of Morwenna perfectly. 

    Essentially, it's a book about a girl who loves books, who basically writes a book (journal).This book is about struggles, personal battles, and a family torn apart. When Morwenna's (Mori) half-mad magic wielding mother pushes the limits of the dark arts to far, she is left crippled and her twin sister dead. Succumbed to living with the father she never really knew, she is shipped off to boarding school at the discretion of her Aunt's only to find that some impoverished crippled Welsh girl doesn't really fit into the aristocratic-like society of Arlinghurst. Plunging deeper into her love of reading science fiction, Mori quickly discovers she can't hide from the world, magic, or even her deranged mother.

    Written in first person narrative as a journal, readers relive five key years of Mori's life. Author Jo Walton has brilliantly sculpted Mori's story into one that is endearing. Enchanting. Cruel, intoxicating, and wraps it up complete with a happy ending. While there seems to be an ongoing issue with questionable content that was included into the reading, but then seemed to go nowhere or was left unanswered, this was still a very pleasurable read and I only wish she had added a bit more content, or left the ending hanging to continue this story.

    I would recommend this book to someone looking for a heartfelt drama that's not the norm. There's no real action, no sultry love scenes, and no real shock and awe. You just have to read it to understand.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 26, 2013

    I was really looking forward to reading this book because it won

    I was really looking forward to reading this book because it won the Hugo and Nebula. However, I was deeply dissapointed. Not for me at all.

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  • Posted January 11, 2013

    I'm not quite sure why this book was so engaging for me - me bei

    I'm not quite sure why this book was so engaging for me - me being a 50+ year old man - but it was.  It kept me interested from beginning to end, and I finished it rather quickly..

    Among others doesn't get on my  "Greatest Books I Ever Read" list, but it does make the second tier of those I enjoyed reading and would recommend to others. 

    The main character is a socially isolated teenage girl who is Magical.  The thing is that even she admits that any of her magic can be explained by completely natural phenomena - and for most of the book you don't know if she really is magical or just delusional.  But it probably doesn't matter - either way it's an enjoyable read..

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 24, 2012

    Not for me

    I don't understand how ths book got the Hugo.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2012

    I don't get it.

    I didn't get it. Maybe because I am not 15 but it just kept going and going and then just abruptly ended without really an ending.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2012

    Hugo Award Winner

    2012 Hugo Award Winner

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 18, 2012

    So disappointing

    I love sci-fi and fantasy, and I love the feeling of disappearing inside a book. The reviews for Among Others made it sound like one of those magical books that transports you to somewhere else entirely while you are submerged in it.

    What it is, instead, is a rather boring story told through teen-girl diary prose. Granted, the teen girl is interesting and interested in life, not just boys and petty jealousies - I appreciated that. But it didn't make up for the total lack of beauty in the writing. The main character spent most of the book talking about how wonderful the books she had read made her feel, and yet ironically, this book does not make you feel anything like that.

    A book about a love affair with books could be so much better than this. The author seemed to think that just mentioning the titles of a lot of good books would infuse her book with their aura. It didn't work.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 28, 2012

    Filled with odd details and name dropping

    Huge rambles in this diary could be edited out and replaced with meaningful story line. Only curiosity pushed me to plow through the endless SF library catalog listings snd pointless genealogy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

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