Locus Online
2004 Archive

New Books Dec. #2
Ackerman & Linaweaver
Lou Anders
Catherine Asaro
Dean Koontz
Denise Little
Diana L. Paxson
Mike Shepherd
Susan Shwartz
Eric S. Trautmann
Alan F. Troop
Stephan Zielinksi

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


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.

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Notable new SF, Fantasy, and Horror books seen : December 2004 Weeks #3 and #4

* Clegg, Douglas : Afterlife
(Onyx 0-451-41167-6, 261pp, mass market paperback, December 2004)

Supernatural suspense novel about a woman unraveling the mysteries of her murdered husband's past, which involves a special school for psychic children.
• The author's website links to a description and several excerpts.
• Amazon reproduces the starred Publishers Weekly review, from its Nov. 22nd issue, which concludes "A concise writer, Clegg manages to weave into his plot such grand ideas as reincarnation and psychic phenomena in a mere 272 pages. Many other writers would have taken twice as long to tell a tale half as captivating."
(Tue 21 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Gerrold, David : Alternate Gerrolds
(BenBella Books 0-932100-37-7, $14.95, 12+202pp, trade paperback, January 2005, cover illustration Bob Eggleton, cover design Melody Cadungog)

Collection of 16 stories, subtitled "An Assortment of Fictitious Lives", all reprinted from anthologies edited by Mike Resnick, including "The Kennedy Enterprise" (from Alternate Kennedys), "The Impeachment of Adlai Stevenson" (from Alternate Presidents), "The Fan Who Molded Himself" (from Sherlock Holmes in Orbit), and "Riding Janis" (from Stars).
• There's an introduction by Mike Resnick, "10 Reasons Why I Hate David Gerrold", and a preface by the author, "Skip This Part".
• Amazon has the book description.
(Mon 6 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Hignutt, Diana : Empress of Clouds
(Behler 0-9748962-4-1, $16.95, 286pp, trade paperback, January 2005)

Fantasy novel concerning a kingdom in which the current ruler is a transsexual, transformed into a woman in order to save the world from a powerful demon. The author is a transsexual herself, author of Spectrum Award nominated Moonsword.
• The author's webpage has this description. The publisher's site has this page with excerpts from reviews.
• Amazon has the PW review, which says "The author, herself a transsexual, sensitively handles the book's transsexual theme..."
(Mon 6 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Scarborough, Elizabeth Ann : Cleopatra 7. 2
(Ace 0-441-01206-X, 321pp, hardcover, December 2004, jacket illustration Scott Grimando)

SF thriller, sequel to Channeling Cleopatra (2002), concerning archaeologists who blend ancient DNA with their own to create new versions of Cleopatra with the aim to restore Egypt's glory.
• Amazon has reader reviews, including Harriet Klausner's, who describes this as a "fascinating often humorous work of speculative fiction".
(Fri 31 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(Times Books 0-8050-7708-1, $26, 37+296pp, hardcover, January 2005)

Nonfiction collections of essays by the founder of Skeptic magazine, and columnist for Scientific American, noted here for the chapter on Gene Roddenberry and Star Trek's "lessons about chance and time" titled "The Hero on the Edge of Forever".
• The PW review on the Amazon page complains that "Shermer furthers the cause of skepticism and makes a great case for its role in all aspects of human endeavor, but he'll lose many readers in a bog of details."
• The Skeptic Magazine website has this description as well as this profile of the author.
(Tue 21 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Steele, Allen : Coyote Rising
(Ace 0-441-01205-1, $23.95, 382pp, hardcover, December 2004, jacket art Ron Miller, jacket design Frangie, Rita)

SF novel subtitled "A novel of interstellar revolution", sequel to Coyote, about a hijacked starship that has founded a colony on a new world, now met by follow-up starships full of colonists with differing agendas.
• This book, like its predecessor, is a 'fix-up' of previously published novelettes, slightly or substantially different from their original publication, in this case of 8 stories from the May 2003 through December 2004 issues of Asimov's SF magazine.
• The book includes a diagram of the planetary system, a Coyote calendar, and a short bibliography of sources.
• Amazon has the PW review, which says "[T]he book's real center is its setting. Coyote offers forests, mountains, prairies, rivers in a panorama strange enough to rouse awe, vast enough to give all manner of humans room to find themselves. Happily, by the end the little war is finished, but this big, wonderful world is still waiting to be explored."
(Mon 20 Dec 2004) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


Opening lines:
"Have you ever been to Earth?"

At first, Fernando Baptiste didn't realize he was being spoken to; his attention was on the lunar landscape passing by the maglev. Mare Imbrium was a grey, flat wasteland pitted here and there by ancient impact craters. Far away, he could make out the hulking forms of He3 combines, massive crawlers that scooped up powdery regolith and seined it for volatiles. It was the middle of teh Moon's two-week day; stark sunlight, polarized by the train windows, cast long shadows from the high peaks of the Apienne Mountains.
Opening lines:
In the testing room, the boy stared at the others from behind the glass. He raised his fists and began hitting the thick pane. His cries for help were unheard by the others. The flames shot up in the booth around him, moving rapidly up the boy’s back as he pounded harder, his mouth open impossibly wide. He shut his eyes as if trying to block it all out or to send his mind to another, safer place.

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