The Incomparable Mothership #427 October 6, 2018
Mary Robinette Kowal’s “Lady Astronaut” novels

A Lot of Rocket Metaphors

This summer we devoured two novels by Mary Robinette Kowal, “The Calculating Stars” and “The Fated Sky.” They’re both exciting tales of space exploration, with well-rounded characters having to navigate challenges both external and internal, cultural and scientific, personal and global. They’re set in an alternate timeline where the Space Race we know happened quite a bit differently, and at the center is the world-famous Lady Astronaut, Elma York. We seriously can’t recommend these books highly enough. Listen in to find out why, and then stick around for a list of other books we really enjoyed!

Listen to this episode (1 hour, 14 minutes)

Show Notes



  • “Space Opera” by Catherynne M. Valente (Amazon, Apple)

  • “Hope Never Dies” by Andrew Shaffer (Amazon, Apple)




  • “European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman” by Theodora Goss (Amazon, Apple)

  • “The Shift” by Russell A. Carleton (Amazon, Apple)

  • “Red Moon” by Kim Stanley Robinson (Amazon, Apple)

Topics Covered