Amy Goldschlager Reviews The Witch in the Almond Tree and other stories Audiobook by C.S.E. Cooney

The Witch in the Almond Tree and other stories, C.S.E. Cooney; narrated by the author (Self-published, $4.99, digital download, 4.25 hr., unabridged) December 2020.

Many people have tried to embark on some kind of creative or crafty project during the pandemic; author/narrator Cooney chose to self-produce a recording of three charmingly erotic works. The result is a sweet and steamy distraction. The titular story concerns a brilliant, assertive, and ...Read More

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Alvaro Zinos-Amaro Reviews Michael Bishop and the Persistence of Wonder by Joe Sanders

Michael Bishop and the Persistence of Wonder: A Critical Study of the Writings, Joe Sanders (McFarland 978-1476671512, $39.95, 202pp, pb) January 2021.

Paul Di Filippo concluded his thoughtful re­view of Michael Bishop’s The Sacerdotal Owl and Three Other Long Tales (2018) by recommending that Bishop be considered for a Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award, and I’d like to echo that sentiment here. Besides Bishop’s rich body of work, ...Read More

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2021 Imadjinn Awards Finalists

Finalists for the 2021 Imadjinn Awards have been announced, including several categories of genre interest:

Best Science Fiction Novel

  • The Second Star, Alma Alexander (Crossroad)
  • Storm Shattered, Patrick Dugan (Falstaff)
  • High Mountain Hunters, William Alan Webb (Seventh Seal)
  • Hope’s Game, Mick Williams (Hydra)

Best Fantasy Novel

  • Curling Vines & Crimson Trades, Kellie Doherty (Desert Palm)
  • The Watchers of Moniah, Barbara V. Evers (New Mythology)
...Read More Read more

Spotlight on: Windumanoth

Tell us about Windumanoth. Where are you based, how often are issues released, and what kind of material do you publish?

Windumanoth is officially based in Barcelona, Spain. But the reality is that most of the staff live in different places in the country, and we’ve worked remotely from the beginning.

The issues are released every four months. This is a somewhat long publication cadence to be able to ...Read More

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Buhlert Wins Space Cowboy Award

Cora Buhlert received the second annual Space Cowboy Award, given for “support and excellence in the field of Science Fiction.” The award is administered by science fiction bookstore Space Cowboy Books, based in Joshua Tree CA. 2020’s recipients were Gideon and Janice Marcus of Galactic Journey.

For more information, see Buhlert’s announcement.

While you are here, please take a moment to support Locus with a one-time or recurring donation. We ...Read More

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Alex Brown and Colleen Mondor Review Written in Starlight by Isabel Ibañez

Written in Starlight, Isabel Ibañez (Page Street 978-1645671329, $18.99, 368pp, hc) January 2021.

Written in Starlight begins not long after the chaotic events of Woven in Moonlight, the first book in Isabel Ibañez’s young-adult fantasy duology. Ximena, the fake condesa, and Princess Tamaya remain in the capital as Catalina, the actual condesa, is banished to the jungle where she is expected to die. All Catalina has ever ...Read More

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Evans Selected for Gulf South Writer in the Woods

Desiree S. Evans has been awarded the position of Gulf South Writer in the Woods. The program is designed for writers of speculative fiction and “supports the creative work, scholarship and community engagement of writers examining the Gulf South region.” Evans will receive a stipend of $5,000 plus a 6-week residency at A Studio in the Woods, which includes access to Tulane University library.

For more information, see the official ...Read More

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Norwescon 43 Report

Norwescon 43 was held April 1-4, 2021 as an online event; the theme was “The Longest Night”. Guests of honor, held over from 2020, were Jacqueline Carey (writer), Sana Takeda (artist), and Susan Langley (science). Tor was the spotlight publisher, represented by Claire Eddy. There were 1,469 registrations and over 1,000 attendees. The weekend included over 250 hours of programming with hundreds of panels, 40 readings, 69 gaming slots, ten ...Read More

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Gabino Iglesias Reviews Ink by Jonathan Maberry

Ink, Jonathan Maberry (St. Martin’s Griffin 978-1250765888, $17.99, 464pp, tp) November 2020. Cover by Jonathan Bennett.

People are the amalgamation of their memo­ries and experiences, and Jonathan Maber­ry’s Ink explores what happens when we lose our most important memories. A sprawling, dark narrative made up of the interwoven stories of a set of misfits that struggle to get by, Ink is a moody horror novel that deals with grief, ...Read More

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2021 James Tait Black Prize Shortlists

The First Woman by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi (Oneworld) and A Children’s Bible by Lydia Millet (Norton) are on the four-title shortlist for the 2021 James Tait Black Prize in the fiction category. The £10,000 award is presented by the University of Edinburgh for books published during the previous year. Winners will be announced during the Edinburgh International Book Festival, to be held August 14-30, 2021 at the Edinburgh College of ...Read More

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2021 Anthony Awards Nominees

Bouchercon has announced nominees for the 2021 Anthony Awards, honoring the best in crime fiction. Authors and works of genre interest include:

Best Hardcover Novel

  • What You Don’t See, Tracy Clark (Kensington)
  • Blacktop Wasteland, S.A. Cosby (Flatiron)
  • The First to Lie, Hank Phillippi Ryan (Forge)

Best Short Story

  • “Dear Emily Etiquette”, Barb Goffman (Ellery Queen 9-10/20)
  • “90 Miles”, Alex Segura (Both Sides: Stories From the Border
...Read More Read more

2021 Encore Award Shortlist

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury) and The First Woman by Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi (One World) are on the five-title shortlist for the 2021 Encore Award, given by the Royal Society of Literature (RSL) to the best second novel of the year. The judges for 2021 are Sian Cain, Nikita Lalwani, and Paul Muldoon. The winner of the £10,000 will be announced May 20, 2021. Each of the four other finalists ...Read More

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Adrienne Martini Reviews The Only Living Girl on Earth by Charles Yu and Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir

The Only Living Girl on Earth, Charles Yu (Scribd Originals, subscription required, 43pp, eb) January 2021.

I’m going to step out on a limb and make a bold pronouncement: the fourth section of Charles Yu’s novelette The Only Living Girl on Earth is the most beautiful and true summation of what it means to be mortal. The fact that it is also sur­rounded by a poignant and wry story ...Read More

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Barnes Wins Jerusalem Prize

Julian Barnes has won the 2021 Jerusalem Prize, given “to a writer whose work best expresses and promotes the idea of ‘freedom of the individual in society.'” The $10,000 prize was announced May 3, 2021 during the online Jerusalem International Book Forum. Judges for 2021 were Nurit Gertz (chair), Alit Karp, and Dror Mish’ani.

For more information, see the Jerusalem Prize website.

While you are here, please take a moment ...Read More

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Inaugural Barnes & Noble Children’s & YA Book Awards Winners

Winners of the inaugural Barnes & Noble Children’s & YA Book Awards have been announced. Amari and the Night Brothers by B.B. Alston (Balzer + Bray) won the Young Readers category. Other finalists of genre interest include:

  • Wink, Rob Harrell (Dial)
  • Twins, Varian Johnson, illustrated by Shannon Wright (Graphix)
  • Everything Sad Is Untrue, Daniel Nayeri (Levine Querido)
  • The List of Things That Will Not Change, Rebecca
...Read More Read more

Femia Wins 2021 Neukom Award for Playwriting

“Meet You at the Galaxy Diner” by Gina Femia has won the 2021 Neukom Institute Literary Arts Award for Playwriting, given by the Neukom Institute for Computational Science at Dartmouth College. “Some of Us Exist in the Future” by Nkenna Akunna was the runner-up. Other finalists were:

  • “Roll Play”, Julia Blauvelt
  • “NOISE: A Teenage Panic Attack on National Themes”, Ezra Brain & J. Andrew Norris
  • “Omen Road to Starrville”, Erik
...Read More Read more

2021 International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts Report

The 41st International Conference on the Fantastic in the Arts (ICFA 42) took place virtually March 17-20, 2021, with a theme of “Climate Change and the Anthropocene”. Academics, writers, publishers, editors, artists, students, independent scholars, and more participated, with a record 555 people registered (compared to 2019 with 480 attending), and about 340 either presenting a paper or appearing on a panel (up from 285 in 2019). Jeff VanderMeer was ...Read More

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2021 Tomorrow Prize Finalists and Green Feather Award Winner

The Omega Sci-Fi Awards has announced the finalists for its Tomorrow Prize short story competition:

  • “EP-1M Contamination”, Britney Cruz
  • “Äerd”, Tessa Kennedy
  • “Star Sailor”, Gwendolyn Lopez
  • “Returning Home”, Sofia Orduno
  • “The Plague”, Flora White

Honorable mentions were given to the following stories:

  • “Cold Ashes”, Ethan Kim
  • “The Gorm”, Jakob Wedel

Results of the 2021 Green Feather Award competition were also announced. “Corn” by Sienna Koizumi was declared the winner, with

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Ian Mond Reviews The White Library by Paul Voermans

The White Library, Paul Voermans (PS Pub­lishing 978-1-786365-92-4, £25.00, 246pp, hc) November 2020.

Because it happens so rarely, I always get a buzz when my hometown of Melbourne is depicted in genre fiction. It’s even exciting when it’s an alternate version of the city with a different name and a divergent history, provided I can recognise the famous landmarks, the streets, and alleyways. This is the case in Paul ...Read More

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2021 Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award Longlist

Several authors of genre interest are on the 15-title longlist for the Sunday Times Audible Short Story Award:

  • “The July War”, Rabih Alameddine
  • “Oil of Emu”, Louise Erdrich
  • “A Prolonged Kiss”, Jonathan Gibbs
  • “A Challenge You Have Overcome”, Allegra Goodman
  • “Kirpal”, Rachel Heng
  • “The Irish Wedding”, Elizabeth McCracken

The £30,000 award is given to a single story “of 6,000 words or less” published in the UK or Ireland. Judges for

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IAFA Call for Proposals

The International Association of the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA) is open to proposals “for pre-formed panels, paper sessions, roundtables, and workshops” on the theme of “Trans/Inter/Cross: The Fantastic Between Genres, Media, and Cultures”. Proposals can be submitted through the online portal here. Submissions close June 1, 2021. The symposium will be held October 1-3, 2021 at the Marriott Orlando Airport Lakeside in Orlando FL.

For more information, see the ...Read More

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Paul Di Filippo Reviews Stormland by John Shirley

Stormland, John Shirley (Blackstone Publishing 978-1094017822, 368pp, $26.99, hc) April 2021.

Once upon a time, there were two factions of SF writers: the humanists and the cyberpunks. Their differing narrative stances and methodologies, themes, and angles of attack basically broke down along lines of optimistic/pessimistic; liberal/anarchic; spiritual/nihilistic. Of course there were gradations and overlaps, anomalies and paradoxes among and between the two camps; and surely the whole dichotomy is ...Read More

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Nix Wins 2021 ABIA Award

The Left-Handed Booksellers of London by Garth Nix (Allen & Unwin) won the 2021 Australian Book Industry Award (ABIA) in the Book of the Year for Older Children category. Other finalists of genre interest included:

  • Future Girl, Asphyxia (Allen & Unwin)
  • Aurora Burning, Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (Allen & Unwin)
  • Jane Doe and the Key of All Souls, Jeremy Lachlan (Hardie Grant)

Winners were announced in

...Read More Read more

Cory Doctorow: Qualia

Last summer, the pandemic was in its first wave and the nation was in chaos. A lack of federal leadership left each state to figure out how to interpret the science, and many states punted public health decisions to counties or cities or even smaller units, like universities.

Leaders, left to their own, often winged it, letting wishful thinking trump prudence in the drive to find ways to “reopen safely.” ...Read More

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2021 Oregon Book Award Winners

Winners of the 2021 Oregon Book Awards were announced by Literary Arts on May 2, 2021. Molly Gloss received the C.E.S. Wood Distinguished Writer Award. A Game of Fox and Squirrels by Jenn Reese (Henry Holt) won the Eloise Jarvis McGraw Award for Children’s Literature. Judges for the Children’s Literature category were Nikki McClure, Eliot Schrefer, and Wendy Wahman.

For more information, see the Literary Arts website.

While you are ...Read More

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2021 Minnesota Book Awards Winners

Winners of the 2021 Minnesota Book Awards, given by The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library, were announced in a virtual ceremony. Sharks in the Time of Saviors by Kawai Strong Washburn (Farrar, Straus, Giroux) won the Novel and Short Story category, What If a Fish by Anika Fajardo (Simon & Schuster) won the Middle Grade Literature category, and Big Papa and the Time Machine by Daniel Bernstrom, illustrated ...Read More

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Karen Burnham Reviews Short Fiction: Clarkesworld, Lightspeed, and Fiyah

Clarkesworld 2/21 Lightspeed 2/21 Fiyah Winter ’21

February’s Clarkesworld leads with a great cloning story, “The Failed Dianas” by Monique Laban. A young woman return­ing from a space-based financial internship goes to a high-end restaurant and meets a different version of herself, quite a bit older. It turns out that this is the original Diana who disappointed her parents deeply by refusing to go into finance; by ...Read More

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Publishing News, May 2021

Disney Publishing is launch­ing new adult imprint Hyperion Avenue, headed by Jennifer Levesque, with its first books launching in Summer 2021, and a full slate expected by Fall 2022. They anticipate releasing 50 to 60 titles per year within five years, and hope to acquire titles that can be adapted for Disney’s various media arms, including streaming service Disney+. The Walt Disney Co. previously sold most of its adult publishing ...Read More

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Gabino Iglesias Reviews Disease by Sarah Tolmie

Disease, Sarah Tolmie (Aqueduct Press 978-1619761933, 120pp, $12.00, tp) August 2020.

Sarah Tolmie’s Disease is a strangely funny book about fictitious diseases and psychological conditions. Presented in a scholarly tone that resembles a series of academic case studies, this book looks at some bizarre ailments that range from scavenging, a psychological affliction in which people compulsively move into old houses, to a poor guy who developed an allergy to ...Read More

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Amy Goldschlager Reviews The Mask of Mirrors Audiobook by M.A. Carrick

The Mask of Mirrors, M.A. Carrick; Nikki Massoud, narrator (Hachette Audio 978-1-54919091-9, $26.98, digital download, 23.25 hr., unabridged) January 2021.

Ren, a former child thief turned con artist, seeks the security that she believes can only be found in large sums of money. So she embarks on her greatest scheme yet, returning to her native city of Nadezra in the guise of Alta Renata Viraudax, a foreign daughter of ...Read More

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2021 Locus Awards Top Ten Finalists


The Locus Science Fiction Foundation has announced the top ten finalists in each category of the 2021 Locus Awards. These results are from the February 1 to April 15 voting, done by readers on an open public ballot. Congratulations to all!

The Locus Awards winners will be announced June 26, 2021, during the virtual Locus Awards Weekend. Connie Willis will MC the awards ceremony. Additional weekend events include author ...Read More

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Rich Horton Reviews Driftwood by Marie Brennan

Driftwood, Marie Brennan (Tachyon 978-1616963460, $15.95, 224pp, tp) August 2020.

Way back in 2008 and 2009 I saw a couple of stories by a writer fairly new to me, Marie Bren­nan, set in an extremely original setting called Driftwood. I liked those stories (“A Heretic by Degrees” and “Drift­wood”) quite a bit. Over time, Brennan added three more stories in this setting, and by-the-by established a reputation as a ...Read More

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