New and Notable Books
Nelson Bond, The Far Side of Nowhere (Arkham House 3/02) This collects 29 stories, many in Bond's trademark humorous style, by a classic pulp author who claims his inspirations come from that eponymous place which is always ''now, here.''
Ben Bova, The Rock Rats (Tor 4/02) Independent prospectors and big corporations skirmish over the resources of the Asteroid Belt in this latest installment in Bova's future history of the Solar System.
Jacqueline Carey, Kushiel's Chosen (Tor 4/02) Opulent settings, twisty intrigue, a hint of eroticism, and the colorful detail of an alternate Renaissance Europe make this fantasy sequel to Kushiel's Dart even more enthralling as it follows the adventures of Phèdre, the god-marked courtesan with a taste for pain and intrigue, as she again saves her nation from treachery.
Storm Constantine, Sign for the Sacred (Stark House/Griffin Skye 3/02) A decadent fantasy of a battle between a church and a maverick prophet. This first US edition adds two pieces Constantine's fans won't want to miss – the first draft of the beginning of this novel, plus the start of an aborted sequel.
Vincent Di Fate, The Science Fiction Art of Vincent Di Fate (Paper Tiger/Sterling 4/02) This lavish art book combines over 100 illustrations by Di Fate, showing this versatile artist's range, from the spaceships and gadgets for which he's best known to fantasy and horror. Di Fate discusses his career in three essays, as well as providing notes for each individual work.
Neil Gaiman & John Bolton, Harlequin Valentine (Dark Horse 11/01) Gaiman's charmingly macabre story of a harlequin who literally gives his heart away becomes a striking graphic novel illustrated by Bolton's hyper-realistic, digitally enhanced art.
Laurell K. Hamilton, A Caress of Twilight (Ballantine 4/02) Even tinseltown isn't safe from faerie politics when Princess Meredith of the Unseelie sidhe returns to her Los Angeles job as a private investigator. A sexy, tension-filled dark fantasy mystery in Hamilton's hallmark style.
Peter F. Hamilton, Fallen Dragon (Warner Aspect 3/02) In a bleak future where corporations strip colony worlds of their assets to support overpopulated Earth, one corporate soldier seeks a legendary treasure that will allow him to escape his employer – and finds an underground resistance instead.
James Herbert, Once... (Tor 4/02) A master of horror turns to fairy tales for the inspiration of this very adult contemporary dark fantasy novel.
Paul Kearney, The Iron Wars (Ace 3/02) The third book of the acclaimed fantasy series ''The Monarchies of God'' continues this tale of an epic battle between kingdoms – and the women scheming behind the scenes.
Stephen King, Everything's Eventual (Scribner 3/02) The latest collection from the master of horror gathers 14 dark stories, including two making their first appearances in print: the e-book ''Riding the Bullet'' and audio story ''1408''. King also adds an introduction on the writing and marketing of short fiction.
Ursula K. Le Guin, The Birthday of the World and Other Stories (HarperCollins 3/02) This collection of eight SF stories includes an original novella and six stories set in Le Guin's Hainish worlds. Le Guin discusses the difficulties of creating universes in her informative foreword.
Karin Lowachee, Warchild (Warner Aspect 4/02) The Warner Aspect first novel contest introduces its second winner with this hard-core tale of military SF centering on an orphaned boy raised on an alien world and groomed to play a role in a war with Earth.
Robert A. Metzger, Picoverse (Ace 3/02) Physicists discover a way to make smaller duplicates of our own universe, and get trapped in a string of alternate realities in this fast-paced, hard-SF romp.
Adam Roberts, On (Gollancz/Sterling 4/02) A strikingly different SF novel of a world where gravity works sideways.
Kim Stanley Robinson, The Years of Rice and Salt (Bantam 3/02) Robinson brings an unprecedented complexity to alternate history as he traces patterns of change across centuries in this epic novel set in a world where plague wipes out medieval Europe, and Islam and China become the great forces of civilization.
Michael Swanwick, Bones of the Earth (Eos 3/02) Swanwick brings new life to one of SF's old familiar plots – the dinosaur thriller – adding style, detailed up-to-date dino lore, and a touch of satire to this compelling tale of time-travel and academic politics in the Paleolithic.
Sheri S. Tepper, The Visitor (Eos 4/02) An orphan girl with an ancient book may be the only hope against new destruction in her Gormenghastian post-holocaust world. ''Tepper in top form – a potent mix of Peake and Dickens with a twist of Jonathan Swift'' (Faren Miller).
George Zebrowski, Swift Thoughts (Golden Gryphon 4/02) A writer who can blend philosophy and mathematics with his SF, Zebrowski provides notes on each of the 24 stories gathered here.
Sarah Zettel, A Sorcerer's Treason (Tor 4/02) A lady lighthouse keeper from 1899 Wisconsin is magically transported to a world where she has great powers, and becomes embroiled in an imperial power struggle. Interesting characters and colorful magics drawn from Russian, Indian, and Chinese lore lift this fantasy well above the crowd.