Okay, saddle up kids, Maya has more gay shit to recommend. Today we’re talking about …

Gideon the Ninth (The Locked Tomb, #1)Gideon the Ninth Openlibrary.

This review is also on Goodreads, here.

If you are creeped out by skeletons or descriptions of unattached flesh, I don’t recommend this book. If you’re a dude and you principally enjoy reading about dudes, I don’t recommend this book. If you are allergic to That YA Smell, I don’t recommend this book. If you’re trying to focus your reading on Haute Literature, I don’t recommend this book.

Everyone else should get going.

I read this in one day (today) because I was enthralled by it. If I reread it, it will be to spend more time thinking about skeleton servants and a moss castle, because these are more or less #goals.


  • You can really feel the hate coming off the characters that hate each other. That’s often not written well.
  • There were sword fight scenes that I found compelling, which is unusual for sword fight scenes for me. Probably it helps when it’s sword fights with skeletons coming out of the dirt and stuff.
  • Every stupid page of this had me wishing it were a movie just because the environmental and monster design could be so, so good on screen. Googling tells us they have sold rights, but that alone doesn’t promise anything.
  • The characters do not have Same Voice Syndrome, a great amount of which I take for granted in this kind of thing, so that was really good. I could read another whole book of Harrow being an imperious jerk savant. (I am hoping that the sequel has not granted her too much character development for this…)
  • You are not exactly sure what kind of book you are reading at many times.
  • The world building was fun, the right amount of “oh you know what those people are like”.
  • A lot of time when people write fake churches, you can smell exactly what kind of thing they think constitutes Church. Either Muir covered up the seams of appropriated fragments far better than most, or she hails from something close enough to Catholicism to make the fake thing feel real for me.
  • “necromancer lesbian from the goth planet” really ought to be enough to sell this, but did I mention they paint skull face makeup on?


  • Not all of the sword fights were interesting enough. I think to some extent I can’t picture the monsters well enough to set up the fights in my head, but also that’s probably more a me thing than a book thing.
  • I wanted more wlw romance than I got, damn it. However, I am willing to accept that this much cool description of animated skeletons and an ideal quantity of wlw romance may be unrealistic to demand from a single book.
  • I got the different houses mixed up in my head by the time the names weren’t being repeated all the time. Fifth? Third??
  • A number of MacGuffins were introduced in a way that might have meant this was all a bit mystery-you’re-supposed-to-be-trying-to-solve-along-with-them, which sounded like a pain. I decided not to keep track of them with their various descriptions. It turned out this was fine, but there was also a whole plot moment when it turned out everyone had been relying on a false assumption about these MacGuffins, but this assumption hadn’t been adequately communicated for me to pick up on anyway, so…
  • There were times that it felt like all the “planet” stuff could have been transplanted into “realms” (or, more obviously, “districts”) and nothing substantial or even superficial would have changed.
  • I didn’t expect the ways the plot went, but they also didn’t feel like resoundingly satisfying twists.
  • The distant 3rd person voice and the voice closer into Gideon’s head were jarringly different at times.

Get this for your niece who is 12 and a bit morbid.