It’s Not Over Yet, Baby Blue: Gary Westfahl Reviews Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

No one goes to a Jurassic Park movie to experience brilliant acting performances or profound explorations of complex human relationships; they want to see dinosaurs, lots of dinosaurs, and in its two hours and eight minutes Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom provides more than enough of them. Further, after a slow-paced and meandering first hour that emphasizes the menace of an erupting volcano more than the menace of ravenous dinosaurs, the ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews Peter Watts’ The Freeze-Frame Revolution

The Freeze-Frame Revolution, by Peter Watts (Tachyon Publications 978-1-61696-252-4, $14.95, 192pp, trade paperback) June 2018

In 2014, I concluded my Locus Online review of Peter Watts’s Echopraxia by saying, “Peter Watts is some precisely engineered hybrid of Lucius Shepard and Gregory Benford, lyrical yet hard-edged, purveyor of sleek surfaces and also the ethical and spiritual contents inside.” I am happy to report, after a torturous wait of four years, ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews Harlan Ellison’s Blood’s a Rover

Blood’s a Rover, by Harlan Ellison (Subterranean 978-1596068681, $40.00, 232pp, hardcover) June 30, 2018

The tradition of creating “fixups“–a narrative assembled from previously published pieces, sometimes with new interleaved material, and then issued as an organic whole–is a grand one in science fiction. Such masterpieces as Simak’s City and Vance’s The Eyes of the Overworld have arisen from this process. (The term was coined by A. E. van Vogt ...Read More

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Blinks: LaValle reviews King; WaPo and SFC reviews; Ansible; Valente; Edelman

» NY Times Book Review: Victor LaValle reviews Stephen King’s The Outsider

» Washington Post: Everdeen Mason reviews Peter Watts, Jacqueline Carey, Sabaa Tahir

» SF Chronicle: Michael Berry reviews Rita Bullwinkel, Julia Fine, Claire North

» David Langford’s Ansible 371

» Publishers Weekly: Catherynne M. Valente’s 10 Essential Offbeat Science Fiction Novels

» Scott Edelman’s Nebula Awards Donut Jamboree ...Read More

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Some Modest Blows Against the Empire: Gary Westfahl Reviews Solo: A Star Wars Story

Despite all the negative publicity surrounding the film, I think I actually enjoyed Solo: A Star Wars Story more than Disney’s other recent additions to this venerable franchise. For one thing, in contrast to other Star Wars films, the fate of the entire universe does not hinge upon whether this film’s heroes escape from their latest predicament, so there are no portentous auras to dampen the film’s sense of humor; ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews Blackfish City by Sam J. Miller

Blackfish City, by Sam J. Miller (Ecco 978-0-06-268482-0, $22.99, 336pp, hardcover) April 2018

I’m going to confess to an idiosyncratic critical weakness: if you want me to be immediately predisposed towards your novel, preface it with an epigram from Dhalgren. Not only will I instantly respect your taste and cultural leanings, but I will be excited to see if your own book can possibly be worthy of bearing ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews Sisyphean by Dempow Torishima

Sisyphean, by Dempow Torishima (Haikasoru 978-1-4215-8082-1, $16.99, 304pp, trade paperback) March 2018

With this stellar debut volume–a “mosaic novel” depicting a world of infinite biomorphic perversity that feels at once surreal yet authentic; estranging yet welcoming; otherwordly yet familiar–Dempow Torishima gives the world a book of fantastika with very few literary precedents. Perhaps the closest correlative is the cult classic Moderan, by David Bunch, a long-out-of-print sui generis ...Read More

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Blinks: Guardian reviews by Eric Brown; about Fahrenheit 451, by the HBO director; Christina Sng

» Guardian: Eric Brown reviews Heather Child, GX Todd, Jeff Noon, Claire North, Roger Levy

» NY Times: Ramin Bahrani, director of HBO’s adaptation of Ray Bradbury’s Fahrenheit 451 that debuts May 19th: Why ‘Fahrenheit 451’ Is the Book for Our Social Media Age

» Singapore’s The Straits Times: Poet Christina Sng is the first Singaporean to win the Bram Stoker award ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews The Rig by Roger Levy

The Rig, by Roger Levy (Titan 978-1785655630, $14.95, 617pp, trade paperback) May 2018

In the period from 2000 to 2006, Roger Levy gave the world three novels: Reckless Sleep, Dark Heavens and Icarus. I recall receiving review copies and making a mental note that these books seemed several cuts above the average, and I should pay attention to them. But of course, due to the constant, overwhelming ...Read More

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New Books : 1 May 2018

Greg Egan’s Phoresis, R.F. Kuang’s The Poppy War; collections and novellas by Caitlín R. Kiernan, Priya Sharma, Steven Rasnic Tem, and Connie Willis; an anthology from Bill Campbell, & Francesco Verso; and novels by James Abbott, Joseph Brassey, Emily Devenport, Faith Hunter, Sarah J. Maas, Sylvain Neuvel, Eliot Peper, S.A. Sidor, Jodi Taylor, and Steve White & Charles E. Gannon. ...Read More

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Weekly Bestsellers, 30 April 2018

 

Two published books debut this week: Richard Powers’ novel The Overstory (Norton), ranking as high as #12 on the New York Times list; and a Star Wars novel by Daniel José Older, Last Shot (Del Rey), ranking #15 on the NYT list.

And forthcoming in November, but already selling on two Amazon lists: George R.R. Martin’s Fire and Blood: A History of House Targaryen of Westeros, Volume 1 (Bantam). ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo reviews The Real-Town Murders by Adam Roberts

The Real-Town Murders, by Adam Roberts (Gollancz 978-1473221451, $28.99, 240pp, trade paperback) US edition April 2018

Starting in the year 2000, with the appearance of his first book, Salt, I have read (and mostly reviewed) all of the non-parody novels from Adam Roberts, except, for some forgotten reason, Gradisil. (Must save one Roberts treat for my dotage.) In those eighteen years he has never repeated himself and ...Read More

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