Darcy's Picks

Darcy, being raised by a librarian, grew up surrounded by books.  She has an affinity for robots, fun sci-fi, and old-fashioned worlds fo whimsy.  In her spare time, she likes to draw and pet other people's dogs.

Currently Reading:
Currently Listening:

Recent Reads:


The Wild Robot, by Peter Brown

This charming tale of a robot-out-of-water begins with Roz washing ashore onto a remote island, populated only by woodland creatures. The animals think of her as a monster as she learns to adapt to her unintended habitat—how to traverse mountain and forest, how to camouflage herself, and how to understand the animals. When she accidentally orphans a goose egg, she takes it upon herself to raise the hatchling, with the reluctant help of beavers, deer, and the other geese. Roz slowly earns her place in the island community, until her origins come back to haunt her. Brown’s expressive illustrations bring Roz’s quest for survival and a sense of purpose to life, making this a lovely read for children and adults alike.

The Aeronaut's Windlass, by Jim Butcher

Don your goggles and take to the skies for the first book in this new steampunk series from Jim Butcher, The Cinder Spires.  Humanity dwells upon Spires, high above the dangerous and mist-covered surface.  A cold war is brewing between Spires Albion and Aurora, a war that is about to boil over.  Enter Captain Grimm, a disgraced former Albion naval officer with a heart of gold, and his hearty crew on the crystal-powered airship, Predator.  When his ship is damaged in a skirmish with an Auroran flagship, Grimm is approached by the Spirearch with a proposition: Predator will be repaired at no cost to the good captain, in exchange for performing a covert mission.  Danger!  Magic!  Epic air battles!  Cats!  All of this, and more, await you within these pages

Sea of Rust, by C. Robert Cargill

It’s fifteen years after humanity has gone extinct, and things are not looking good for robotkind.  Many have succumb to becoming facets for one of the two One World Intelligence hive minds that remain after the war with humanity, and the freebots who do not submit gather together in ramshackle settlements for protection from OWI raids.  One such freebot is Brittle, a rare caregiver model who traverses the Sea of Rust on her own, scavenging parts to barter with from damaged bots who are too far gone to be saved from their mad wanderings.  When another caregiver model critically damages her in an attempt to poach her parts for himself, both join a secret mission with the promise of repairs…but Brittle soon discovers that there’s far more at stake than she ever realized.  Cargill has crafted a believable world of post-apocalyptic ruin, seen through Brittle’s eyes as she fights for survival against her own deteriorating mind and the brutal memories of her actions in the war, making for a compelling story about faith, choices, and consequences.

The Shape of Water, by Guillermo del Toro & Daniel Kraus

By now many of you have probably seen The Shape of Water in theaters and know the story of the mute janitor, her African-American friend and coworker, her gay artist neighbor, and the reluctant Russian spy who conspires with them.  All of them outcasts of society, coming together to save an amphibian man plucked from the Amazon by a manic soldier to be dissected and weaponized in the name of the US government.  The novelization of this year’s Best Picture, having been written concurrently yet separately from the film, truly takes advantage of its medium, allowing us a more profound insight into the characters we love -- and love to hate -- from the film, with enough lush details and differences for it to stand out on its own.  Get ready to dive into the pages and fall in love all over again

Defy the Stars, by Claudia Gray

Noemi Vidal is a soldier of Genesis, a former colony world of Earth locked in a drawn-out war for its independence.  During a skirmish she ends up stranded on a derelict ship, where she comes across Abel – the most advanced Earth mech ever built and the only one of his kind.  Bound by his programming, Abel is drawn into Noemi’s plan to end the conflict once and for all...even at the cost of his own life.  As they journey across the stars, these two kindred souls form a bond that goes beyond mere programming.  Can Noemi still condemn Abel to death, even in the face of his emerging humanity?  And what is Abel’s true purpose?  The artful prose combined with alternating perspectives of the two immensely likeable protagonists will keep you turning the pages, all the way to the bittersweet end.

Heart of Iron, by Ashley Poston
When Ana’s android partner, Di, starts to experience debilitating glitches, she’ll stop at nothing to save him — but an Ironblood boy beats her to the coordinates that could save Di’s life.  The two end up on the lam, racing towards the coordinates together, and along the way they discover secrets that will change their lives forever.  If one were to put Firefly, Treasure Planet, and Don Bluth’s Anastasia into a blender, the result would be Ashley Poston’s Heart of Iron — it’s got a loveable and effortlessly diverse cast of characters, space adventures, and the classic trope of a long-lost princess.  Poston has written an engaging and fast-paced tale, with an ending that will leave you chomping at the bit for the sequel.
Barsk: The Elephants Graveyard, by Lawrence M. Schoen

On the world of Barsk, uplifted elephants are isolated away from all other uplifted species in the galaxy–with the exception of the koph trade, a unique substance only found on the glum planet that the elephants call home. The residents of Barsk hold a tight monopoly on their main export, which grants its users the ability to Speak to the dead. When Fants start to disappear on their way to the final resting place, as foretold by the first Speaker hundreds of years ago, it’s up to Jorl — a historian, Speaker, and one of the few Fants to have ventured past the homeworld —to discover their fates, and ultimately to decide the fate of his people. A compelling story, rich universe, and characters that, despite appearances, are surprisingly human make for an immensely enjoyable read.

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