Top Five Tuesday: Books Under 300 Pages

This week’s Top Five Tuesday is all about short reads!  That’s right, here below you have my favorite books that are under 300 pages, books that you can easily finish in the span of a weekend (or even a day!) if you are so inclined.  Thanks to host Bionic Book Worm for posing the topic!

If any of these titles catch your fancy, covers link to Goodreads!

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IN THE VANISHERS’ PALACE by Aliette de Bodard
This Beauty and the Beast retelling is breathtaking in its use of language, one of those books that is just commanding in its prose.  When her village promises a local dragon her mother’s life in return for the healing of a prominent citizen, Yên volunteers to go in her mother’s place.  There, she becomes a tutor to the children of Vu Côn, and slowly is introduced to the mysteries of their palace, and the strange race that created it long ago.

BINTI by Nnedi Okorafor
I really loved the internal character struggle of this book, as Binti wrestles with her desire to expand her knowledge and pursue education in deep space while at the same time honoring the traditions of her African origins.  When her spaceship is attacked, Binti survives based solely on her wits, and navigates an odd truce with the race that has commandeered her ship.

EXIT STRATEGY by Martha Wells
Honestly, any of THE MURDERBOT DIARIES novellas could have gone on this list, but I chose the final book because it has the delightful honor of absolutely nailing the landing in this character arc. There’s action and drama aplenty in this tightly paced story, as Murderbot decides that it is finally time to confront the corporation that threatens its human friends.

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Reaching back for an oldie but a goodie, one of those classics that absolutely holds up.  I was surprised how tense I felt, reading this story of a Martian invasion of Earth, written and set in 1898.  I never expected to be swept up by a plot by horse-drawn carriages outrunning spaceships, and yet it completely works!

TRAIL OF LIGHTNING by Rebecca Roanhorse
For a book under 300 pages, this story packs in an exceptional amount of action and character growth. Set in a near future post-apocalyptic US, monster hunter Maggie Hoskins does odd jobs for her Navajo people, preferring to otherwise live alone after being abandoned by a mentor she deeply trusted.  Convinced she is too much of a monster herself to let others into her life, Maggie is nonetheless forced to partner with the town’s new medicine man, Kai, when she realizes a recent spate of monster attacks is only part of a larger plot.

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