Jane Langton and Peter Lovesey have been named 2018 Grand Masters by the Mystery Writers of America, along with William Link. For more information, including MWA Raven and Ellery Queen award winners, see their official website. ...Read More
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Reviews: Books & Short FictionView All
A Flight to the Future, Kathryn Cramer, ed. (XPrize/ANA).
The Best of Subterranean, William Schafer, ed. (Subterranean Press) July 2017.
A Flight to the Future is a multimedia project edited by Kathryn Cramer (although Eric Desatnik is also listed as “Creator and Producer”). Sponsored by XPrize and the Japanese airline company ANA, A Flight to the Future collects 30 very short stories, many by leading science fiction authors, all working ...Read More
In Evil Times, Melinda Snodgrass (Titan 978-1-7832-9584-5, $14.95, 400pp, pb). July 2017. Cover by Alex Ronald.
I wanted to have good things to say about In Evil Times, sequel to Melinda Snodgrass’s The High Ground (2016). Instead, I found reading it to be a very alienating experience. This is not, I hasten to add, because of any insufficiency in Snodgrass’s prose or skill as a novelist. Rather, it’s because of ...Read More
A Lit Fuse: The Provocative Life of Harlan Ellison, Nat Segaloff (NESFA Press 978-1-61037, $35.00, 416pp, hc) July 2017.
For decades, people (myself included) have asked Harlan Ellison when he might get around to writing an autobiography, bringing together in one volume those voluminous anecdotes and memoirs that have peppered his speeches, introductions, and essays almost since his first story collections and convention appearances. His response, at least when I ...Read More
The Last Magician, Lisa Maxwell (Simon Pulse 978-1-4814-3207-8, $18.99, 500pp, hc) July 2017. Cover by Craig Howell & Cliff Nielsen.
The Last Magician is billed as YA and its chief protagonist is a girl in her late teens, but Lisa Maxwell doesn’t write down or pull many punches. Only after reviewing Belcher did I notice how the dialog sidesteps around Anne Bonny’s favorite word, while allowing an occasional “shit.” Although ...Read More
The Stone Sky, N.K. Jemisen (Orbit 978-0-316-22924-1, $16.99, 420pp, tp) August 2017.
N.K. Jemisin ups the ante even more in The Stone Sky, finishing The Broken Earth trilogy with the fate of the planet in just a few hands and time running out. Here millennia of history and lore stand behind gritty dramas of the moment – though perspective shifts feel even more jarring when all foreground action occurs in ...Read More
Lightspeed 8/17, 9/17
There’s a good set of stories in the August Lightspeed. Ashok Banker‘s “Tongue” is an uncomfortable and rather over-the-top satire on the horrors of a traditional Indian marriage, set on an asteroid. The over-the-top elements are part and parcel of satire, though I also thought the portrayal of Indian culture seemed a wincing cliché, as did the corporate menace ...Read More
New Titles & BestsellersView All
All Posts Continued…
Blinks: B&N’s, NY Times’ Best of 2017; Le Guin interview; New Republic on Manson, Hubbard, and Heinlein
» Barnes and Nobles’ Best Science Fiction & Fantasy of 2017 includes titles by Naomi Alderman, James Bradley, N.K. Jemisin, John Kessel, Annalee Newitz, Kim Stanley Robinson, Jeff VaderMeer, and many others
» NY Times’ 100 notable books includes novels by Omar El Akkad, Victor LaValle, Mohsin Hamid, Paul Auser, Louise Erdrich, George Saunders, Naomi Alderman, and N.K. Jemisin, and Edmund Gordon’s biography of Angela Carter
» LA Review of ...Read More
Upon This Rock: Book 1 – First Contact, David Marusek (A Stack of Firewood Press 978-0-9988633-0-6, $9.99, 574pp, eb). June 2017.
David Marusek’s first big impact on the SF/F landscape was 2005’s Counting Heads, a book about genetic engineering peopled with strong, interesting characters and a meandering yet purposeful plot. The sequel Mind Over Ship dropped four years later. Then, apart from publishing a couple of quiet short story collections, ...Read More
Iain M. Banks, Paul Kincaid (University of Illinois Press 978-0-252-04101-3, $95.00, hc; -08250-4, $22.00, 190pp, tp) May 2017. Cover by Mark J. Bradley.
Paul Kincaid’s Iain M. Banks takes on the task of accounting for a writer whose career sprawled across at least two literary categories and whose primary gifts (at least in the view of this reader) are a dizzying verbal adroitness married to a relentless and hard-edged philosophical ...Read More
Winners for the 2017 National Book Awards (NBA) were announced at a ceremony and benefit dinner in New York on November 15, 2017. Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward (Scribner) won in the Fiction category.
The shortlist for the Fiction category also included Her Body and Other Parties: Stories by Carmen Maria Machado (Graywolf), and the shortlist for the Young People’s Literature category included American Street by Ibi Zoboi (Balzer ...Read More
The African Speculative Fiction Society (ASFS) has announced the winners for the 2017 Nommo Awards. All titles “are speculative fiction, were published in calendar years 2015 or 2016, and are thought to be by Africans as defined by the ASFS and Nommo Awards Guidelines.”
- WINNER: Rosewater, Tade Thompson (Apex)
- Blackass, A. Igoni Barrett (Graywolf)
- Azotus, the Kingdom, Shadreck Chikoti (Malawi Writers Union)
- Taty Went West, Nikhil Singh (Rosarium)
Sovereign, April Daniels (Diversion Books 978-1-682-308-240, $14.99, 314pp, tp) July 2017.
Teenage superhero Danny Tozer returns for more adventures as the mighty Dreadnought in Sovereign, a sequel that packs a ton of personal and professional drama (plus superhero smashdowns) into its 300+ pages. The first thing, and most important, is that readers absolutely must read Dreadnought before tackling Sovereign. Trust me, you’re going to be hopelessly lost otherwise and will ...Read More
Asimov’s 5-6/17, 7-8/17
The May/June issue of Asimov’s is an average issue, with a couple of standout stories. Best story here is “Triceratops” by new writer Ian McHugh, taking us to a near-future in which hybrids of Neanderthals and Homo sapiens have been created, forming an entirely new race which doesn’t fit comfortably into either world – and who may be developing a way of life that their ...Read More
Fever Dream, Samanta Schweblin (Riverhead 978-0-399-18459-8, $25.00, 192pp, hc) January 2017.
The title of Samanta Schweblin’s first novel, Distancia de rescate, translates as “the rescue distance,” the term a character uses to describe the amount of ground she would have to cover in order to reach her young daughter and whisk her away from danger. The title of the English-language edition of the book, however, is Fever Dream, which speaks ...Read More
Akata Warrior, Nnedi Okorafor (Viking 978-0-6707-8561-2, $18.99, 480pp, hc) October 2017
It’s been more than six years since Nnedi Okorafor’s Akata Witch, which introduced us to Sunny Nwazue, the American-born daughter of Nigerian parents (or Naijamerican) who moves to Nigeria at 12, begins to discover her own latent powers as a “free agent,” joins the secret society of Leopard people, discovers the magical hidden village of Leopard Knocks, and finally ...Read More
An Unkindness of Magicians, Kat Howard (Saga Press 978-1-4814-5119-2, $25.99, 368pp, hc) September 2017.
Kat Howard’s first novel, Roses and Rot had strong folkloric influences. It was a version of Tam Lin set in an artists’ retreat, and its main characters were two sisters – although only one was our viewpoint character – who had survived childhood parental abuse to find relative success in their respective careers as a dancer ...Read More