The Mimicking of Known Successes by Malka Older

“I led her up Supal, which hadn’t changed much since Mossa and I were students: the typically curlicued lanterns; the tea shops designed for every taste from quiet to rowdy, basic to exclusive; the prayer booths in a range of denominations; the quaint bookshops in every specialization. Shops offered very need of the scholar, from magnifying eyewear to artificial lighting, tactile enhancement, containers of  various stimulants, auditory recorders, atmospheric mufflers for every part of the body, hypnotic hummers, erudite guides to the university, plated reminder mechanisms. The uneven paving of the street creaked somewhat underfoot, aged and familiar, and rose steeply away from the station, allowing for many unsightly functions of platform life to take place below the walking level. That wasn’t necessary on more recent platforms, but when Valdegeld was constructed, heating, to take one example, was propounded through vast mechanisms of steam and turbine, many of which clunked along below the quaint buildings lining the way, emitting drifts of vapor that mingled with the motley planetary fog.”

-The Mimicking of Known Successes by Malka Older

The Mimicking of Known Successes by Malka Older is my first read by this author! I’m ashamed to say I’ve had Infomocracy for years and still haven’t read it (I really want to though and this novella has definitely moved that one up on my list!). 

This novella is a cozy-ish mystery with sapphic romance that is set on Jupiter. What a FREAKING delight this novella is!! I’m so so happy to see that there’s a sequel planned for this because I loved it whole-heartedly. 

This novella is set on rails that run along Jupiter….possibly I’m imagining it wrong but I saw the setting as raised platforms above the planet that had rails running back and forth between them. People don’t live on the surface itself, it’s not safe for humans to live on. Investigator Mossa heads to investigate a man who has gone missing. While signs initially point to the fact that he may have jumped off a rail into the planet to die, Mossa investigates further. 

This leads her to Valdegeld where the colony’s university lays. At the university, Mossa runs into her ex-girlfriend Pleiti. Pleiti is a scholar who spends her time researching the different ecosystems of Earth so that humanity can figure out how to one day restore it. For the record, Pleiti’s research sounds fascinating. I loved hearing about her work. 

When Mossa and Pleiti reconnect, Mossa seeks Pleiti’s help in solving the mystery she is working on. Their dynamic is so great. Mossa is a bit aloof and struggles to communicate to others without making them uncomfortable, but Pleiti’s calm and relaxed demeanor balances her out. It’s a really lovely dynamic to watch. And watching them navigate their feelings for each other was amazing. 

I loved this novella so so much. It’s such a cool world, I loved Mossa and Pleiti so much. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series and check out more books by Malka Older. I highly recommend this one. It’s a brilliant novella!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: