-Elizabeth Bear at Ideomancer (which, BTW, has an awesome new look):
In Servant of the Underworld, Aliette de Bodard has created a rather good debut novel, replete with magic, blood, and complex worldbuilding. There was a great deal to enjoy in this book, not all of it the immediately obvious.
-Josh Vogt at Examiner:
(…)for those who enjoy mythology, subtle horror, and even “detective” stories, Servant of the Underworld blends these elements into a unique story. Fortunately, it’s labeled the first book in the Obsidian and Blood series, so hopefully we’ll be seeing Bodard’s next release soon. Looks like book 2 is called Harbinger of the Storm. Sounds…peaceful.
-And Hereward L.M. Proops at Booksquawk (who didn’t like it so much, alas, but you can’t win every time):
(…)those looking for something truly different could do much worse than check out this novel. Whilst not perfect, Aliette de Bodard’s debut shows a great deal of potential which could be better realised in the inevitable sequels.
-The book also gets mentioned over at SF Signal as part of the “What Book Have You Recently Read That’s Good Enough To Recommend To a Friend?” discussion.
-Still at SF Signal, my short story “Golden Lilies” is identified as one of several “Nebula-worthy” short stories by Eugie Foster
-Finally, BestSF reviews “The Wind-Blown Man”, in the February 2010 issue of Asimov’s
Aliette de Bodard looks to China to create an alien society, alien cultures and technology – a world in which China is on a par, or better, with Western Christian society. For my money, I’d rather see Earth cultures used as inspiration to create truly alien societies, as that is true SF – but failing this, I’d much rather see the creative efforts as put in by de Bodard.