Reviews and Articles in General Publications
§ The New York Times Book Review September 26 Kim Stanley Robinson's The Martians (Bantam Spectra) --
''Although it extends and deepens the impact of the earlier books'' Jonas recommends that new readers start with the trilogy, ''for a uniquely rewarding experience of state-of-the-art science fiction at the brink of a new millennium''
Peter Watts' Starfish (Tor), a novel about staffing an undersea research station with psychotics -- ''no one has taken this premise to such pitiless lengths -- and depths -- as Watts''
and Architects of Emortality (Tor), in which author Brian Stableford has ''tackled one of the most difficult challenges in science fiction: writing a plausible detective story set in a far future world. ... [O]n the whole, this is an entertaining romp in a difficult mixed genre that only a handful of writers -- among them Isaac Asimov and Alfred Bester -- have come close to mastering.''
SF columnist Gerald Jonas reviews:
§ Salon September 23
Jonathan Lethem is profiled by Lorin Stein, and his new novel Motherless Brooklyn (Doubleday) -- a hard-boiled crime novel narrated by a detective with Tourette's syndrome -- is reviewed by Gary Krist. (Stein remarks that if his readers haven't yet heard of Lethem, it's ''because until now he has written only science fiction and, by and large, science fiction doesn't get reviewed in the mainstream press.'') The review is also posted on CNN.
§ San Francisco Chronicle September 26
David Wiegand reviews Eric Idle's The Road to Mars (Pantheon). ''Idle more than overcomes the book's weak story line with a steady stream of goofy humor, tortured puns and inside jokes.''
Entertainment Weekly October 1
A Books sidebar (page 70) offers suggestions of vintage fantasies for readers who've devoured the Harry Potter books: works by C.S. Lewis, Madeleine L'Engle, Susan Cooper, Edward Eager, E. Nesbit, Alan Garner, and Lloyd Alexander. Also: reviewers grade Kurt Vonnegut's collection Bagombo Snuff Box a B+ and Eric Idle's novel The Road to Mars a C-.
§ Washington Post Book World September 26
Michael Dirda reviews Italo Calvino's Why Read the Classics? (Pantheon).
§ Earlier... Salon Sept. 13th: novelist Lorrie (Birds of America) Moore chose her five favorite novels about the future. They're by Margaret Atwood, Don DeLillo, Denis Johnson, Toni Morrison, and Kurt Vonnegut; none exactly genre SF.
CNN, August 23rd, posted the transcript of an online chat with Orson Scott Card.
Entertainment Weekly, Sept. 3rd: Tom DeHaven reviewed Thomas M. Disch's The Sub (Knopf), giving it a grade A.
Bestseller Watch, 27 September
The three Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling occupy the top three positions on this week's New York Times, Amazon, and USA Today lists. They and the paperback edition of the first book place in positions 2 through 5 on the Borders list. The only lists they don't dominate are those that segregate children's books to separate tallies, as at Publishers Weekly, which nevertheless notes (9/20) that ''J.K. Rowling's third Potter title, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, is outselling the #1 PW hardcover adult novel, Black Notice, by about 10:1.'' The third book is at 5 on the Amazon UK Hot 100 list; paperbacks of the first two books are 7th and 8th.
Stephen King's Hearts in Atlantis ranks 3 at LAT, 34 at NYT, 4 at USAT, 10 at Amazon, 6 at B&N, 6 at Borders, and 17 at Amazon UK.
Card's Ender's Shadow holds on at 15 at LAT; it's 19 at NYT, 69 at USAT, 44 at Amazon, 50 at B&N. It ranks 4 on Amazon's list restricted to [adult] fiction hardcovers; lower down are books by Neal Stephenson, Greg Bear, and Lois McMaster Bujold.
Kurt Vonnegut's Bagombo Snuff Box hits #1 on this week's LAT list. In the UK, Simon Singh's nonfiction The Code Book is 6th on Amazon UK's Hot 100, and Iain Banks' latest novel, The Business, 25th.
Links to the Bestseller lists:
Amazon UK |
(Mon 27 Sep 1999)