Fun for Monday: 6 Degrees of SFnal Separation

Another Monday, another tag! (Tag? Meme? … Whatever). I first saw this one done in this deliciously SciFiMonth way by imyril of There’s Always Room for One More who took her cue from Kate of Books Are My Favourite and Best.

Banner by imyril of There’s Always Room for One More; image by Sebastien Decoret from

Imyril made it look easy, but this took me most of the week to put together because, gosh darn it, I know that two books have themes in common, but all my brain can do for me is shout “both greeeeeeeen!” … which is, yeah, not useful.

So while not as inspired as imyril’s list, for sure, here’s my contribution:



The Explorer by James Smythe 

With the strap line “There is no turning back” you don’t need to be told that this is about a fated space voyage, in which multiple deaths, the claustrophobic atmosphere and duplicates all play a role. It’s scary.

(My synesthete brain would like to add that this book is dark purple).



Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

One of my favourite reads of 2018, VanderMeer presents us with the weirdest first contact situation ever. Transformation is the name of the game and among other things we witness duplicates and biology run riot in another claustrophobic environment.

(My brain insists this book is a green one).



The Search for Wondla by Tony DiTerlizzi

I will never tire of plugging this trilogy – they are simply the best kids’ scifi I’ve read as an adult and that’s that. DiTerlizzi creates a whole new world in which biology runs riot. This world is peopled by some frigging awesome aliens, and one of the key relationships in the story is a human-alien friendship that gives me all the warm and fuzzy feels.

(Another green book).


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Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Another wonderful human-alien friendship is depicted here, one that survives against the odds. Okorafor also treats her readers to some crazy beautiful ideas, a far-future I absolutely want to live in, and the Miri-12 spaceship, Third Fish, which is a living ship!

(My brain says it’s not enough to tell you that this is a blue book – it is that particular blue of the top of the sky on a cloudless summer day).



Alien Earth by Megan Lindholm

In this far-future humanity has undergone a transformation and is under the watchful eye of the alien Arthroplana after the mess we made of our home planet. A living ship Evangeline completely steals the show in this book however, and her beautiful alien-human friendship is beautiful to behold.

(Another that particular blue book).


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Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty

And so we come full circle to a second fated space voyage. Humanity has undergone a transformation here too, and both duplicates and multiple deaths raise their ugly heads again.

(And finally, a dark purple book if ever there was one).



This may have been hard for me, but it was also very satisfying to find that final book that linked both forwards and backwards. And I’m sure you can all do far better than I’ve done here, so I’m looking forward to seeing other Six Degrees of SFnal Separation posts very soon!








    • Wow – that’s cool! How does she experience music?
      I mostly experience letters, words and numbers as colours. People, books and experiences are also very specific colours. Sounds have shapes for me, but no colour. And I don’t get tastes for things, but I do get physical sensations like warmth. I’m pretty sure this is all pretty mild stuff compared to someone with full-on synaesthesia. 🙂


  1. Oh bravo – and you managed full circle too!

    …also AAAAAAAH The Explorer! Although I think I liked The Echo even more. I’m really looking forward to revisiting these when the second half of the series finally creeps over the event horizon.

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      • Yes! His drawing of fae creatures are so evocative. I really need to look into his more recent work, I feel like I haven’t seen anything by him lately, although his stuff with Holly Black really caught my imagination when Spiderwick came out.

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