This Is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

First, I didn’t know there was a time war but the more I think about it the more it makes sense.

Second, this is a novella. A novel is long. A novella is not as long. Less long. Fewer words. So look at me, already doing really good on my resolution. I’m so proud of myself.

Third, this book confused me at first but that’s probably because I started reading it 7 months ago, forgot about it, and then jumped back in yesterday. So I had to go back and reorient myself.

The writing is lovely, poetic.

And what I return to, the me-ness that I know as pure, inescapable self… is hunger. Desire. Longing, this longing to possess, to become, to break like a wave on a rock and reform, and break again, and wash away.

Things are not over-explained, which I love with all my heart. We’re just dropped into the story, and gotta figure it out as we go, and it’s fine because we don’t need all the backdrop and details because essentially this is a love story, and to understand a love story you just need to have loved someone.

But when I think of you, I want to be alone together. I want to strive against and for. I want to live in contact. I want to be a context for you, and you for me. I love you, and I love you, and I want to find out what that means together.

It’s also a fantastically layered time travel adventure, so if you’re into that: read it.

Side note: co-authoring is a fascinating phenomenon. I get how it would work for nonfiction, but co-authoring a novel (sorry, novella) is beyond my comprehension. Cool as fuck, though.