Lo’s Adaptation starts out with a small-scale threatened apocalypse by birds, and turns into an X-Files episode starring a bisexual teenage girl in San Francisco. I liked it a lot, and that’s all I can say without spoilers.

“Natural Selection,” a novella, is set after Adaptation and before its sequel, Inheritance. “Natural Selection” can be read independently of either book, but is hugely spoilery for Adaptation. I liked it a lot, but that’s all I can say about it without spoilers.

Natural Selection. Only $1.99!



It’s from the POV of Amber, the alien girl, and parallels a summer camp she attended on Earth with an alien coming-of-age ritual. The parallel structure works nicely, but it’s the alien ritual that really makes the story. Lo explores alien customs and society as shaped by the existence of empathy that's as natural and common as speech. It’s moving, well-imagined, social science sf, and reminded me a bit of Ursula Le Guin.
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