A Prayer for the Crown-Shy

Tea monk Dex leads Mosscap the robot on a tour of the human world in A Prayer for the Crown-Shy, the highly anticipated, resolutely cozy follow-up to Becky Chambers's A Psalm for the Wild-Built, the first Monk & Robot novella.

In the first book in the series, nonbinary tea monk Dex met sentient robot Mosscap, the first robot to emerge from the wilds of Panga. Dex, having explored the wilds of Mosscap's home, now returns the favor by introducing Mosscap into human society. Humanity in their world has solved most of its problems and lives in peace and plenty in a renewed natural world. Mosscap is endlessly curious about human life and, as is robot custom, greets humans by asking what they need, leading to a laundry list of household repairs. As they travel, Mosscap confronts its own mortality for the first time when one of its parts breaks. Dex struggles with burnout, fails to perform the tea ceremony and finds it difficult to adhere to one of their major religious precepts: "Welcome comfort, for without it, you cannot stay strong."

Chambers (The Galaxy, and the Ground Within) sheds even more light in this contemplative novella, which is gentle and buoyant even in its darker moments, on her hopeful vision of a future in which kind and helpful actions are a form of currency and prioritization of mental health is a given. Readers unfamiliar with the first book should easily pick up the thread of the story and the developing friendship between Dex and Mosscap. Chambers's reputation for comfort reads once again proves well-deserved. --Jaclyn Fulwood, blogger at Infinite Reads

Powered by: Xtenit