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Water into Wine Kindle Edition
Xin inherits a vineyard on a distant planet, and moves there to build a life… but an interstellar war intervenes. Will Xin’s dreams of a new life get caught in the crossfire? Xin's understanding of family and sense of self must evolve to cope with the changes brought by life on a new planet and a war that threatens everything.
- ASIN : B07563YS1S
- Publisher : Annorlunda Books (September 27, 2017)
- Publication date : September 27, 2017
- Language : English
- File size : 2235 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 145 pages
- Page numbers source ISBN : 1944354301
- Lending : Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,406,271 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Top reviews from the United States
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It's a very human story, close to the earth, rooted in family and identity and love and loss. It's space opera viewed at ground level, and as it deals with themes that science fiction action/adventure stories often skate over, it sits at a curious intersection of literary fiction and science fiction.
It is a story about time and transformation, about how things change and how things remain the same. It gives us a rare view of giant exciting space battles as seen from below, from the people who get caught between the rebels and the empire, between the central alliance and the independent fringe, between the good guys (whoever they even are) and the bad guys (whatever that even means).
Read this story if you're the sort of person who watches a TV show or movie with intricate background design and heavy attention to detail in set dressing and it makes you want to know more about the world that birthed those artifacts. Read this story if you're the sort of person whose eye catches on a background character in the back of a bar or on a street or in an alien bazaar and you wonder what their life is like. Read this story if you watch the heroes opening a bottle of wine and you wonder who cultivated the grapes and bottled the wine.
Read this story if you've ever thought about what it would be like to be a civilian in wartime when battles are being fought with planetkillers. Read this story if you ever lament all the times movies and TV shows cut out the quiet domestic moments and personal glimpses in order to keep up the pacing. Read this story if your idea of a "used universe" or a "lived-in world" isn't as cold and mechanical as dents and scratches on a spaceship exterior.
And most importantly: read this story if you want the world to have more stories like this in it.
Xin is a complex character whose emotions and experiences feel as real on the page as picking up someone's diary. Though the story's set in the far future and on a distant planet, Xin's Southeast Asian roots and culture continue to play an important role in their life... from everyday things like food and names to matters of greater spiritual significance. Language, holidays, and beliefs from Xin's ancestors are all alive and well in their life. It's a wonderful and immersive take on sci-fi, and I was utterly drawn in from the beginning.
This is one of those books that's hard to review because there's so much to it, and I feel like my descriptive abilities aren't up to doing it justice. Every attempt to talk about what I liked and such feels like I'm reducing it to some simplified version. So I'll leave it here and settle for saying that this is a gorgeously written and hypnotic book, and that I highly recommend it.
This is a story of a non-binary person who maintains a vineyard far from earth. They (qar) keep it growing while war happens all around them, and struggle with the human experiences of love, comfort, sex, identity, livelihood, family, and self while the bombs fall. We never find out much about what's going on in the wider world--it's all about the family and their neighbors, as it is for most of us in the real world.
The book moves quickly, and it took me a minute to settle in with the rhythm of the short chapters. Once I did, it took me over and I couldn't put it down. Chng writes beautifully, in effortless prose, about loss, grief, and humanity. I finished it weeping.
The world building also was well done, especially the parts regarding language and the nature of cultural transferral from Old Earth to these new planets. Overall, a highly recommended read!
It's not the kind of story I normally enjoy but the quite dark passion is intriguing.
A snippet of a life lived during wear
Top reviews from other countries
I love the tight focus of this story, how the war is a looming cloud over the vineyard but something the characters (mostly) don't directly participate in. The prose is rich but straightforward, the atmosphere captivating, and it creates an overall really intimate novella. Would have loved more of it.
I can only describe this book as part literary fiction, part speculative fiction, and 100% awesome.
The story follow Xin and his family as they move to a vineyard in the midst of war. At its heart, the story is about a family just trying to make a good life for themselves, but as I'm sure we can all relate, things don't always go to plan no matter how hard you try. Being good and doing right are not necessarily one in the same, a concept that Chng effortlessly enforces.
The characters develop throughout the story and I felt like I was on the journey with them. They were relatable and it was easy to form a bond with them. Oh, and the ending didn't disappoint either.
I would recommend this book for anyone. Even if you're not a fan of speculative fiction, it's the characters that really drive the story and I think many would appreciate the realness and complexity contained within.