Book Reviews, Bookworm Blogging

Middlegame [review]

Middlegame by Seanan McGuire
Published by Tor.com on May 7, 2019
my rating: ★★★★.5
Goodreads avg:
4.07 (as of 2020-06-17)
Spoiler-free review

Meet Roger. Skilled with words, languages come easily to him. He instinctively understands how the world works through the power of story.

Meet Dodger, his twin. Numbers are her world, her obsession, her everything. All she understands, she does so through the power of math.

Roger and Dodger aren’t exactly human, though they don’t realise it. They aren’t exactly gods, either. Not entirely. Not yet.

Meet Reed, skilled in the alchemical arts like his progenitor before him. Reed created Dodger and her brother. He’s not their father. Not quite. But he has a plan: to raise the twins to the highest power, to ascend with them and claim their authority as his own.

Godhood is attainable. Pray it isn’t attained.

Goodreads IndieBound | Author’s Website


This is going to be one of those books you’re SO lost reading when it comes to plot, but it’s okay because Seanan will take your hand and guide you to an ending that will make about as much sense as it can be expected to. I had been intending to read something by Seanan McGuire (or Mira Grant, another pen name of hers) for a while now and while Middlegame wasn’t what I expected my first book of hers to be, I’m so glad I picked it up!

While it’s impossible to get into the plot while still remaining sensical and avoiding spoilers, let’s just say this book will reel you in. It struck the perfect balance of maintaining a complexity that required me to follow things closely while also giving me enough information to keep me completely interested. At no point did I feel like things were lagging or forced; this book was perfectly set-up and perfectly paced and I’m so impressed by it.

In order to balance out a largely confusing plot, the characters and their relationship were so, so endearing. We start off during Roger and Dodger’s childhood and I was impressed to find that Seanan was able to write them in a way that felt realistic without feeling immature or irritating, which I often find to be the case with younger POVs. They both felt like such truly real people and it was wonderful watching their growth.

Overall, I just found this to be such a satisfying read and wouldn’t be surprised if my 4.5 tips over to a 5, depending on how well it sticks to me. I’d definitely recommend this to lovers of sf/f.

content warnings: attempted suicide, graphic descriptions of blood/gore/death


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17 thoughts on “Middlegame [review]”

  1. wow im definitely sold on this now! i didnt love the first book in Seanan Mcguire’s Wayeard Children series but ill definitely give this one a shot, especially since you loved it so much!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I just stumbled across your blog and your reviews are so well written! This book has been on my to read list for awhile, so I’m definitely gonna check it out. I gave you a follow as well. 🎉❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve yet to meet a Seanan McGuire book I didn’t like (she’s truly outstanding, and also her Twitter feed is delightful to boot), and I’m SO EXCITED to see people raving about Middlegame! I haven’t picked it up yet, but it moves higher and higher up my TBR with every positive review I read. Can’t wait to have book money freed up for spending again. 👀

    Anyway, fantastic review, Sarah! I love that you managed to keep it short, sweet, and spoiler free. 😃

    Liked by 1 person

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