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2002 Archive


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.

in LOCUS Magazine

Locus Magazine publishes comprehensive Listings of US, UK, and International Books and Magazines Received each month


Locus Magazine's Books Received listings are accumulated as the online Locus Index.

Locus Magazine publishes reviews of 20-30 books every month.
Books reviewed in June

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Notable new SF, Fantasy, and Horror books seen, 1 - 21 June

* Anderson, Barth, Christopher Barzak, Alan DeNiro & Kristin Livdahl : Rabid Transit: A Mischief of Rats
(Velocity Press , $5, 50pp, chap, May 2003)

Chapbook anthology of 5 original stories by Victoria Elizabeth Garcia, Douglas Lain, David J. Hoffman-Dachelet, Nick Mamatas, and Haddayr Copley-Woods. Second in a series of chapbooks from this press, a publisher "dedicated to bringing innovative voices in speculative fiction to the public." Order online at
(Tue 3 Jun 2003)


(Warner Aspect 0-446-61083-6, $6.99, 8+294pp, pb, June 2003, cover illustration Matt Stawicki)

Young adult SF novel, third in the series following The Duke of Uranium (2002) and A Princess of the Aerie (January 2003). The Amazon page has the Publishers Weekly review, and a review by HK. The author doesn't have a website.
(Tue 10 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(Golden Gryphon Press 1-930846-16-9, $24.95, 15+295pp, hc, June 2003, jacket painting Jamie Bishop, jacket design Lynne Condellone)

Collection of stories not already collected in earlier Bishop volumes (which include One Winter in Eden (1984), Close Encounters with the Deity (1986), At the City Limits of Fate (1996), and Blue Kansas Sky (2000, from Golden Gryphon Press)). A couple of the earliest stories have been revised from their original publications in F&SF -- "A Tapestry of Little Murders" (1971) and "The Tigers of Hysteria Feed Only on Themselves" (1974). Other stories include "Murder on Lupozny Station" (with Gerald W. Page; 1981), "With a Little Help from Her Friends" (1984), and R.A. Lafferty pastiche/tribute "Of Crystalline Labyrinths and the New Creation" (1980, also significantly revised for this publication). The book has an introduction by Lucius Shepard, and a 12-page afterword by Bishop "A Lingering Incandescence: Notes About the Stories". The Amazon page has the Booklist review. The official Michael Bishop website,, has this link to the book's table of contents, which in turn has links to each story's publication history; you can also read the complete text of O Happy Day online. The publisher's page has links to reviews, including Faren Miller's from the June issue of Locus Magazine.
(Wed 18 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Hartwell, David G., & Kathryn Cramer, eds. : Year's Best Fantasy 3
(Eos 0-06-052180-5, $7.99, 16+495pp, pb, July 2003)

Anthology of 29 fantasy stories from 2003, with a brief introduction summarizing the state of fantasy publishing. Authors include Neil Gaiman, Ursula K. Le Guin, Michael Swanwick, Gene Wolfe, China Mieville, and Jeffrey Ford. Three of the stories first appeared online: Ellen Klages' Travel Agency and Naomi Kritzer's Comrade Grandmother from Strange Horizons, and Michael Swanwick's Cecil Rhodes in Hell from his "Periodic Table of the Elements" at Sci Fiction. Cramer's website lists the complete table of contents (see April 26 entry).
(Sat 21 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


+ Joyce, Graham : The Facts of Life
(Atria Books 0-7434-6342-0, $24, 294pp, hc, June 2003, jacket design Tom McKeveny)
First US edition (UK: Gollancz, December 2002).

Fantasy novel set in the years after World War II about a family with seven grown daughters and their various offspring. First published in Britian last year, and selected by Locus reviewers for the 2002 Recommended Reading List. Faren Miller's review in the March 2003 issue comments "What sets this book apart from standard fantasy [...] is a quality also seen in Shakespeare: the awareness that comedy, tragedy, mundane, and magic are all parts of one great whole and needn't be estranged from one another in order to tell a tale." And there's a cover blurb from none other than Isabel Allende: "I have not been so charmed by a novel in a long time."
(Fri 13 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Koontz, Dean : The Face
(Bantam 0-553-80248-8, 608pp, hc, June 2003)

Horror thriller about an anarchist who kidnaps the son of a famous movie-star with plans to torture the boy to death for the purpose of increasing disorder in the world. The Amazon page has a review by Daphne Durham, and reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. "" leads to this Random House page with news about the book, including an excerpt.
(Tue 10 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Layne, Deborah, & Jay Lake, eds. : Polyphony: Volume 2
(Wheatland Press 0-9720547-1-5, $16.95, 297pp, tpb, April 2003, cover design John Elliott)

Anthology of 16 original stories, ranging from SF to fantasy, magic realism, and literary fiction, by authors including Lucius Shepard, Michael Bishop, Jack Dann, Carol Emshwiller, Alex Irvine, Kit Reed, and Lisa Goldstein; a follow-up to last year's well-received first volume. Amazon has the cover blurbs from Connie Willis, James Patrick Kelly, and Kim Stanley Robinson. The publisher's page has the complete table of contents, and all the author descriptions from the book. Locus Magazine ran reviews of the book in April by Nick Gevers, and in July by Rich Horton.
(Wed 4 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Rich, Mark : Foreigners, and Other Familiar Faces
(Small Beer Press , $5, 66pp, chap, June 2003, cover illustration Mark Rich)

Chapbook collection of 9 stories, 3 of them original, with cover and interior illustrations by the author. The publisher's page lists the contents, profiles the author, links to the author's site, and provides the complete text of the title story.
(Mon 9 Jun 2003)


(Scholastic/Arthur A. Levine Books 0-439-35806-X, $29.99, 870pp, hc, July 2003, jacket art Mary GrandPré)

Young adult fantasy novel, fifth in the popular series about the boy wizard; high-anticipated, with a huge initial print run of 8.5 million copies just in the US. leads to a Warner Bros. site, while Scholastic's Harry Potter page is UK publisher Bloomsbury displays two covers for the children's and adult editions of the book that are being sold in the English speaking world except in the US. Despite the highly publicized release date of June 21, 2003, the Scholastic edition indicates "First American Edition, July 2003" on the copyright page; this typical disparity between official release dates and actual availability is the reason Locus Magazine omits official publication dates entirely in its listings. (Locus Online includes them anyway.) The Amazon page has a review by Emilie Coulter (but not yet any reader reviews).
(Sat 21 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Shepard, Lucius : Aztechs
(Subterranean Press 1-931081-50-6, $35, 112pp, hc, May 2003, jacket illustration J.K. Potter, jacket design Gail Cross)

Near-future SF novella set in the world of Life During Wartime and "On the Border" (1987). It was first published online by Sci Fiction in 2001 -- in fact, you can still read it there -- though perhaps for that reason, there's no clue to the earlier publication in this first book edition from Subterranean Press. Nick Gevers reviewed the original publication here at Locus Online. The Amazon page has PW and Booklist reviews. The publisher's page indicates that it's sold out, but Locus Online successfully ordered it from Amazon this month.
(Tue 17 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Shepard, Lucius : Louisiana Breakdown
(Golden Gryphon Press 1-930846-14-2, $21.95, 11+145pp, hc, April 2003, jacket painting J.K. Potter, jacket design Lynne Condellone)

Short supernatural novel about an LA musician who becomes stranded in the small southern town of Grail, which is about to choose its new Midsummer Queen. There's a foreword by Poppy Z. Brite, and an afterword by J.K. Potter. Amazon has the PW and Booklist reviews; the publisher's page has numerous reviews, including two from Locus Magazine.
(Wed 18 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Silverberg, Robert : Roma Eterna
(Eos 0-380-97859-8, $25.95, 396pp, hc, June 2003, jacket illustration Chris Moore, jacket design Ervin Serrano)

Alternate history novel in which the Roman Empire lasts for millennia and Christianity never arises. It's a mosaic comprised of 10 stories first published since 1989 ("Tales from the Venia Woods"), though the book omits specific publication credits. Amazon has enthusiastic reviews from PW and Booklist. Both Faren Miller and Nick Gevers review it in the upcoming July issue of Locus Magazine.
(Thu 5 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Smith, Mitchell : Kingdom River
(Forge 0-765-30008-7, $25.95, 400pp, hc, May 2003, jacket art Michael Koelsch)

Novel, second in the Snowfall Trilogy following last year's "post-apocalyptic thriller" Snowfall (not seen, but reviewed by Paul Di Filippo for SF Weekly). Amazon has a starred Booklist review by Roberta Johnson.
(Thu 5 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Spencer, Wen : Bitter Waters
(Roc 0-451-45922-9, $6.99, 308pp, pb, May 2003, cover art Steve Stone)

SF mystery novel, this in the series featuring detective Ukiah Oregon following Alien Taste (2001) and Tainted Trail (2002). The author is a finalist this year for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. Amazon has the Booklist review by Roland Green. Carolyn Cushman's review appeared in the April issue of Locus Magazine. The author's website has this page about the series, with links to an excerpt and information about book four.
(Tue 17 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Turner, Gary, & Marty Halpern, eds. : The Silver Gryphon
(Golden Gryphon Press 1-930846-15-0, $27.95, 11+330pp, hc, May 2003, jacket painting Thomas Canty, jacket design Lynne Condellone)

Anthology of 20 original stories, by the authors of the first 24 books from Golden Gryphon Press; this is the 25th book, hence the title. The authors, who were asked to write stories that best define them as writers, are James Patrick Kelly, Jeffrey Ford, Michael Bishop, Kage Baker, Richard A. Lupoff, Kevin J. Anderson, Howard Waldrop, Paul Di Filippo, Geoffrey A. Landis, George Zebrowski, Ian Watson, Lucius Shepard, Warren Rochelle, Kristine Kathryn Rusch, Richard Paul Russo, Robert Reed, Andy Duncan, R. Garcia y Robertson, Neal Barrett Jr., and Joe R. Lansdale. The Amazon page has the PW and Booklist reviews. The publisher's page has the book's introduction and links to reviews, including Nick Gevers' from the May Locus Magazine.
(Wed 18 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


(Golden Gryphon Press 1-930846-13-4, $24.95, 10+254pp, hc, April 2003, jacket painting Frank Kelly Freas, jacket design Lynne Condellone)

Collection of 8 stories, each one written by Waldrop and a collaborator, including "Custer's Last Jump!" and "Black as the Pit, from Pole to Pole", both written with Steven Utley. Other stories are written with George R.R. Martin, Bruce Sterling, Leigh Kennedy, Buddy Saunders, and A.A. Jackson IV. The story written with Sterling, 33-page novelette "The Latter Days of the Law", was begun in 1976 but only completed for this book. There are also 3 brief "Nuts and Bolts" essays by Waldrop, introductions to the stories by Waldrop, and afterwords to the stories by (accompanied by photos of) the collaborators. Amazon has PW and Booklist reviews. Jonathan Strahan reviewed the book in the March 2003 Locus, calling it "one of the best collections of the year, and easily one of the longest awaited." This review, and others, are reproduced by the publisher.
(Wed 18 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


* Wright, John C. : The Phoenix Exultant
(Tor 0-765-30432-5, $24.95, 304pp, hc, May 2003, jacket art Shelley Eshkar, jacket design ad)

SF novel, a far future epic in the tradition of Jack Vance, Roger Zelazny, and Cordwainer Smith, according to the book flap and reviews of the first book, The Golden Age, which was well-received last year. This volume carries the subtitle "Or, Dispossessed in Utopia", which suggests a Le Guinian connection. A third volume, The Golden Transcendence, is planned. Wright has a webpage on, but it hasn't been updated with details about this book. The Amazon page has reviews from Booklist and readers. Nick Gevers reviewed the book in the May 2003 issue of Locus, remarking "Phoenix is shorter and a good deal less sumptuous than its predecessor; its focus is a lot narrower; but this is deliberate, a cunning exercise in contrast." A review by Russell Letson is upcoming in the July 2003 issue.
(Wed 18 Jun 2003) • Purchase this book from Amazon | BookSense


Opening lines:
The hottest day of the summer so far was drawing to a close and a drowsy silence lay over the large, square houses of Privet Drive.
Opening lines:
He opened the door onto a crowded boulevard of matter-shops, drama-spaces, reliquaries, shared-form communion theaters, colloquy-salons, and flower parks. An elaborate hydrosculpture of falls and aerial brooks spread from a central fountain works throughout the area, with running water held aloft by subatomic reorientations of its surface tension, so that arches and bows of shining transparency rose or fell, splashed or surged with careless indifference to the reality of gravity.

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