Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Five thrilling SFF books to motivate you while exercising

Aigner Loren Wilson is a SFWA, HWA, and Codex writer who writes poetry, nonfiction, games, alongside her fiction. Her work has been called evocative, noteworthy, and imaginative.

At Tor.com Wilson tagged five "great books to help keep your motivation up while you hit the gym, trail, or whatever other method you use to exercise," including:
The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

Another military fantasy in the epic historical sense, R.F. Kuang’s 2018 debut novel, part of The Poppy War series, catches Rin accepted into an elite military school. While there, she endures training and bullying to discover that she has some untapped power that sends her down a road of mastering her skills and saving her people. The book’s inspired by the Second Sino-Japanese War and the Rape of Nanking, so it covers dark ground while following Rin’s journey. It’s great to see a historical epic fantasy that shows the realities of strenuous mental and physical exercise, but the added benefit of this book being own voices is *chef’s kiss*.

In a lot of ways, it’s similar to both Moon and Clark’s books. Kuang too went the extra mile to turn The Poppy War’s fantasy worlds and characters into more than just adventures and events. These authors crafted people that readers could admire for their complexity and commitment, if not to themselves than to the act of growing, or well, more in line with the theme of this article, getting yoked.
Read about the other entries on the list.

The Poppy War is among Megan Whalen Turner's eight SFF books featuring deities, Jennifer Giesbrecht's top five fantasy books steeped in history, and Ross Johnson's twenty-five epic fantasies for fans of Game of Thrones.

The Page 69 Test: The Poppy War.

--Marshal Zeringue