A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine

Ben says:

“A truly refreshing addition to the Sci-fi/ Space Opera genre about a young woman, Mahit, who is sent across the galaxy to represent her seemingly insignificant mining community in the city-planet heart of an ever expanding empire. After arriving Mahit determines that her predecessor's death was almost certainly murder. She enlists the help of a few locals to uncover the truth behind the killing, and ultimately the impending "annexation" of her home. But, far from home and alone, who can she trust?
This story has compelling characters, and an expertly crafted setting that serves to place as much pressure on the main character, and her predicament, as any of the other players in the story. Imaginative and fun while attaining surprising depth and nuance, this should top your list for new fiction this spring. “

From the publisher:

“This incredible opening to the trilogy recalls the best of John le Carré, Iain M. Banks’s Culture novels and Ann Leckie’s Imperial Radch trilogy.

In a war of lies she seeks the truth . . .

Ambassador Mahit Dzmare travels to the Teixcalaanli Empire’s interstellar capital, eager to take up her new post. Yet when she arrives, she discovers her predecessor was murdered. But no one will admit his death wasn’t accidental – and she might be next.

Now Mahit must navigate the capital’s enticing yet deadly halls of power, to discover dangerous truths. And while she hunts for the killer, Mahit must somehow prevent the rapacious Empire from annexing her home: a small, fiercely independent mining station.

As she sinks deeper into an alien culture that is all too seductive, Mahit engages in intrigues of her own. For she’s hiding an extraordinary technological secret, one which might destroy her station and its way of life. Or it might save them from annihilation.

A Memory Called Empire is book one in the Texicalaan trilogy.”