content by

Shauna Morgan

The Daring Alchemy of Seanan McGuire’s Middlegame

In Middlegame by Seanan McGuire, alchemy and science blend to create a new world order. James Reed, our villain, creator, and puppet master, is a construct made of human body parts, animated by alchemist Asphodel Baker, who remains unrecognized for her genius. Baker used disguised alchemical teachings to create a world-famous, Narnia-esque series of children’s books, indoctrinating children to her teachings at a young age. After her death, the more than 100-year-old Frankenstein’s monster (Reed) is compelled to complete the task set out by his creator. With the help of Leigh, a murderous construct with a sadistic streak, the two monitor the lives of the children they’ve made for the purpose of experimentation, giving no second thoughts to scrapping the lives of the ones who fail.

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