Locus Online
2004 Archive

New Books Dec. #1
Kage Baker
Stephen Baxter
K.J. Bishop
Albert E. Cowdrey
Michael Crichton
Dann & Dozois
David Gemmell
Steven Gould
John Moore
Deborah Noyes
Susan Price
Spider Robinson
Travis S. Taylor

New Books Nov. #4
Mark Budz
Michael Burns
Jon Courtenay Grimwood
Paul Di Filippo
Jennifer Fallon
Keith Olexa
Alastair Reynolds
Al Sarrantonio
David Sosnowski


This page lists selected newly published SFFH books seen by Locus Online (independently from the listings compiled by Locus Magazine).

Review copies received will be listed (though reprints and reissues are on other pages), but not galleys or advance reading copies. Selections, some based only on bookstore sightings, are at the discretion of Locus Online.

* = first edition
+ = first US edition
Date with publisher info is official publication month;
Date in parentheses at paragraph end is date seen or received.

External Links

Links Portal

Bookstore Links

Your purchase of books through and Amazon UK links (click on titles or covers) helps support Locus Online!

Publisher Links

Notable new SF, Fantasy, and Horror books seen : December 2004 Week #2

* Ackerman, Forrest J, with Brad Linaweaver : Worlds of Tomorrow: The Amazing Universe of Science Fiction Art
(Collectors Press 1-888054-93-X, $39.95, 176pp, hardcover, August 2004)

Coffee table art book featuring cover images from hundreds of pulp magazines from the 1920s - 1960s, surrounded by essays on the various themes represented. As reviewers have noted, however, none of the artists are credited -- cover images are identified by magazine title and date, and sometimes the name of the cover story, only.
Seattle Times ran this review by Mark Rahner.
(Tue 14 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(Monkeybrain Books 1-932265-12-0, $15.95, 329pp, trade paperback, December 2004, cover illustration John Picacio)

Nonfiction anthology of 29 essays, 7 of them original. Authors include John Clute (his "Defense of Science Fiction" from Salon), David Brin (his anti-Star Wars screed, and a re-appraisal of Tolkien, also from Salon), Lucius Shepard, Robert Silverberg (a 1984 essay on THX-1138 and Blade Runner), Michael Moorcock, Jonathan Lethem ("The Squandered Promise of Science Fiction" from 1998), Mike Resnick, and others.
• The publisher's site has this description.
• Amazon has a reader review by Robert A. Metzger, one of the contributors, who concludes "my contribution aside, there are 28 other chapters from some of science fictions most fascinating voices, whose perspectives on SF in all its many forms, makes this book a must have for any reader or viewer of science fiction in its various forms."
(Tue 14 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Asaro, Catherine : Schism
(Tor 0-765-30951-3, $25.95, 398pp, hardcover, December 2004, jacket art Royo)

SF novel, latest in the author's long-running Skolian Empire saga and first of a two-book "Triad" sequence that explores the childhoods of some of the earlier books' characters. The book includes a timeline, a family tree, and section on characters and family history.
• The Publishers Weekly review on the Amazon page calls it a "dizzying yet accessible SF soap opera" and notes that "the novel's focus on emotional connections, forgiveness, love and growing up will appeal more to a female than a male sensibility. YA readers will identify with the mostly teenage protagonists."
(Wed 8 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Koontz, Dean : Life Expectancy
(Bantam 0-553-80414-6, $27, 401pp, hardcover, December 2004, cover art Tom Hallman)

Fantasy suspense novel about a child prophesied by his dying grandfather to experience five terrible days in his life.
• The publisher/author's site has this description, and an excerpt.
• Amazon reproduces the starred Publishers Weekly review, from its Nov. 15th issue, which notes how underestimated Koontz is by the literary establishment before concluding "Koontz is a true original and this novel, one of his most unusual yet, will leave readers aglow and be a major bestseller."
(Thu 9 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Little, Denise, ed. : Rotten Relations
(DAW 0-7564-0239-5, $6.99, 306pp, mass market paperback, December 2004)

Anthology of 15 original fantasy stories about 'evil' relatives, e.g. Santa Claus' son, Cinderella's stepmother, Hamlet's uncle.
• Authors include Robert Sheckley, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Pauline J. Alama, P.N. Elrod.
(Tue 14 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(DAW 0-7564-0195-X, $6.99, 308pp, mass market paperback, November 2004)

Anthology of 23 original fantasy stories featuring woman adventurers. Paxson has taken over the series from the late Marion Zimmer Bradley. Authors include Rosemary Edghill, Diana L. Paxon, Naomi Kritzer, and Esther M. Friesner.
• The MZB Literary Trust website lists the complete table of contents.
(Wed 8 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Shepherd, Mike : Kris Longknife: Deserter
(Ace 0-441-01227-2, $7.99, 346pp, mass market paperback, December 2004, cover art Scott Grimando)

Military SF adventure novel about a Prime Minister's daughter who joins the space navy; second in the series following Kris Longknife: Mutineer earlier this year.
• Mike Shepherd is a pseudonym for Mike Moscoe.
(Wed 8 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Shwartz, Susan : Hostile Takeover
(Tor 0-765-30461-9, $24.95, 352pp, hardcover, December 2004, jacket art Stephan Martiniere)

SF novel concerning a financial auditor on a colony planet who discovers possible insider trading, attempted murder, hostile aliens, and a threat to humankind.
• The author has a website, though it has nothing yet about this book.
• An interview with Shwartz appeared last month in Strange Horizons, noting that the book draws on her experience as vice president of marketing at a multinational Wall Street corporation (her day job).
(Tue 14 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(Ballantine Del Rey 0-345-47586-0, $21.95, 13+161pp, trade paperback, November 2004, cover illustration Lorraine McLees, cover design Dreu Pennington-McNeil)

Lavish artbook about the popular videogame, including the sequel Halo 2 that appeared earlier this year. Foreword by Jason Jones, preface by Marcus Lehto, both of Bungie Studios. The book is divided into five sections: Character Design, Environments, Weapons and Gear, Vehicles, and The Art of Game Design.
• The publisher's site has this description.
• has this review by Hilary Goldstein. The site also has several hundred images and videos from the games.
(Wed 8 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Troop, Alan F. : The Seadragon's Daughter
(Roc 0-451-46007-3, $6.99, 278pp, mass market paperback, December 2004)

Fantasy novel, third in the Dragon DelaSangre series, about a family living on a private island off Miami and their encounters with a race of sea-going dragons, following The Dragon DelaSangre and Dragon Moon.
• The author's website,, has descriptions and excerpts from these and his other books.
• Rick Kleffel's The Agony Column posted this review of the first book in the series.
(Tue 14 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Zielinski, Stephan : Bad Magic
(Tor 0-312-87862-1, $23.95, 251pp, hardcover, December 2004, jacket art Jon Foster)

Fantasy novel about a group of mages in San Francisco (who can see with their 'third eyes') fighting vampires, zombies, and other creatures trying to take over the world. A first novel. Includes an appendix about 'Zombi Diego' with a list of scholarly references.
• The author's website, consisting of several blogs, reprints reviews of the books, and lists The Author's Top Ten Rejected Cover Blurbs.
• The PW review on the Amazon page calls it a "wacky occult fantasy". Carolyn Cushman's review in the December Locus says "Lovecraft meets Southern California mellow in this satiric dark fantasy".
(Sat 11 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


Opening lines:
Rider watches her root for aluminum in overflowing trash cans. Lawyers and marketers in their daytime finery pass by without seeing—perfect. He can approach without difficulty.

Cracked eyes meet his. Grime lips croak “Spare change?” He draws his wallet and hands her a ten dollar bill. She squints at it. While she tries to think of something to say, Rider reaches out with a metaphor and takes her invisibility from her. She can tell something has happened—looks around, realizes the suits are staring with sick horror. As Rider slips away, teeth gritted with the effort of holding on, he watches their faces. There will be many glasses of pill-chased delicate wine lifted tonight; many this-is-the-City anecdotes, and killing bouts of depression.
Opening lines:
On the night that I was born, my paternal grand-father, Josef Tock, made ten predictions that shaped my life. Then he died in the very minute that my mother gave birth to me.

Previous page: December week #2

© 2004 by Locus Publications. All rights reserved.