Susan Carol Burke was born June 21, 1955. She grew up in Milwaukee WI and lived there for more than 40 years, spent a year and a half in Texas, and then relocated to Madrid, Spain with her husband in 1999, where they stayed for 17 years. In 2016 they returned to the US, settling in Chicago. She began writing for newspapers as a teenager, attended the University of Wisconsin ...Read MoreRead more
Silver, Linda Nagata (Mythic Island 978-1937197285, $19.00, 414 pp, tp) November 2019. Cover by Sarah Anne Langton. [Order from Mythic Island Press, PO Box 1293, Kula HI 96790; <mythicislandpress.com>.
Linda Nagata has also been revisiting old territory, turning from the near-future military-SF of the Red trilogy and The Last Good Man to the very far future of the Nanotech Succession books of the 1990s. Her new sequence builds on ...Read MoreRead more
The Queen of Nothing, Holly Black (Little, Brown 978-0-316-31042-0, $19.99, 300pp, hc). November 2019.
Holly Black brings her Folk of Air trilogy to a glorious conclusion with the intense, dramatic, and thoroughly satisfying The Queen of Nothing. If she was not already firmly acknowledged as one of the most impressive names in contemporary fantasy, then this title will surely put to rest any doubts. The tightly written plot, ...Read MoreRead more
Talk Like a Man, Nisi Shawl (PM Press 978-1-62963-711-2, $14.00, 114pp, tp) November 2019.
It’s been more than a decade since Nisi Shawl’s only previous collection, Filter House, and since much of her short fiction has appeared in small-press publications that often have to be sought out, her new chapbook from PM Press provides an enticing glimpse into the fiction of an author most widely known for the ...Read MoreRead more
NPD Bookscan released numbers on sales from 2010 to 2019 and listed the top ten bestselling titles of that decade. E.L. James’s Fifty Shades of Grey titles took the top three slots (15.2 million for Fifty Shades of Grey, 10.4 million for Fifty Shades Darker, and 9.3 million for Fifty Shades Freed, all from Random House), with The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) in fourth place ...Read MoreRead more
Nominees for the Brave New Words Award have been announced by Starburst magazine:
- Dead Blondes and Bad Mothers, Sady Doyle (Melville House)
- This is How You Lose the Time War, Amal El-Mohtar & Max Gladstone (Saga; Quercus)
- The Imaginary Corpse, Tyler Hayes (Angry Robot)
- Gideon the Ninth, Tamsyn Muir (Tor.com Publishing)
- New Suns: Original Speculative Fiction by People of Color, Nisi Shawl, ed. (Rebellion)
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) has announced Kevin Wabaunsee as their new managing editor, Lauren Raye Snow as their new art director, and Beth Dawkins as their new volunteer coordinator. Wabaunsee will support editor-in-chief Michi Trota in overseeing SFWA’s publications and communications channels; Snow will oversee visual aspects, including graphics, branding, and design; and Dawkins will work to ensure that volunteers and services are placed where ...Read MoreRead more
Suicide Woods, Benjamin Percy (Graywolf 978-1-644-45006-2 $16.99. 216pp. tp) October 2019.
Benjamin Percy’s writing is immaculate. Each word seems so carefully chosen the reader cannot imagine a synonym that would better suit. This slender volume is not a fast read. With such craft, a reader must slowly savor the nine stories and the single novella in Percy’s third collection. All are relentlessly dark, but the darkness springs from a ...Read MoreRead more
Clarion West is offering free writing workshops for teens and adults on a first come, first served basis. The classes and writing sprints will run from March 30 – April 24, 2020. Instructors include K. Tempest Bradford, Marie Brennan, Tobias Buckell, Curtis Chen, Andy Duncan, Eileen Gunn, Elizabeth Hand, James Patrick Kelly, Fonda Lee, Henry Lien, Seanan McGuire, Ian Muneshwar, Brooks Peck, Laurie Penny, Erin Roberts, Nisi Shawl, James Sutter, ...Read MoreRead more
The International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA) announced that they were able to negotiate an advantageous settlement with their hotel after COVID-19 fears forced them to cancel ICFA 41. IAFA president Dale Knickerbocker said, “To give you an idea just how important this is, we could have been on the hook for a $130,000 payment (not a deposit) even if they had not invoked penalty clauses, which ...Read MoreRead more
Valentina Gosetti & Eliza Kent are the winners of the 2020 Jamie Bishop Memorial Award, given by the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA) “for a critical essay on the fantastic written in a language other than English.” Their winning essay is “Maribas et la sorcellerie masculine” [Maribas and Male Witchcraft], published in Revue Bertrand 9/19.
They receive $250, an honorary plaque, and one year’s membership in
The YA Book Prize 2020 shortlist includes several titles and authors of genre interest:
- Crossfire, Malorie Blackman (Penguin)
- Deeplight, Frances Hardinge (Macmillan)
- The Quiet at the End of the World, Lauren James (Walker)
- The Deathless Girls, Kiran Millwood Hargrave (Orion)
The YA Book Prize is awarded to a YA title written by an author living in the UK or Ireland. Finalists and winners are selected by ...Read MoreRead more
Andrea Lawlor and Ling Ma are among the winners of the 2020 Whiting Awards, which annually gives $50,000 each “to ten emerging writers in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and drama.” The award is funded by the Whiting Foundation, created by New York investor and philanthropist Flora Ettlinger Whiting in 1971. Recipients of the award are selected by an anonymous committee appointed by the Foundation.
For more information, including the complete list ...Read MoreRead more
War Girls, Tochi Onyebuchi (Razorbill 978-0-451-48167-2, $18.99, 464pp, hc) October 2019.
War Girls is a meditation on culture and conflict. It’s action-driven but complex, brutal but brilliant.
A strong opening in a stark, discomfiting setting introduces Onyii, a girl who has known war for most of her life. A handful of lines establish her dissonance with her own body, her social group, and her situation as a “war girl” ...Read MoreRead more
Dracopedia Field Guide, William O’Connor (Impact 978-1-4403-5384-0, $26.99, 159pp, hc) May 2019. Cover by William O’Connor.
Over the course of William O’Connor’s 20-plus-year career, he won many industry awards, was nominated for a Chesley, and created over 3,000 illustrations for gaming and publishing businesses including Wizards of the Coast, Impact Books, Blizzard Entertainment, WhiteWolf/CCP, Lucas Films, and Activision. He also devoted his time to writing and illustrating the best-selling ...Read MoreRead more
Based on the Valiant comic book series of the same name, Bloodshot is about a US Marine, Ray Garrison (Vin Diesel), who is brought back from the dead through the application of nanotechnology, which endows him with superhuman abilities.
The film initially follows all the standard sci-fi action fare as Garrison pieces together what has happened to him, and what he can do now, and it’s exactly as terrible as ...Read MoreRead more
The 2019 Aurealis Awards shortlist, recognizing the best in Australian speculative fiction, has been announced.
Best Science Fiction Novel
- The Subjects, Sarah Hopkins (Text)
- Aurora Rising, Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (Allen & Unwin)
- The Trespassers, Meg Mundell (University of Queensland Press)
- The Year of the Fruit Cake, Gillian Polack (IFWG Australia)
- The Glad Shout, Alice Robinson (Affirm)
- Daughter of Bad Times, Rohan Wilson
Winners of the 2020 Jim Baen Memorial Short Story Award have been announced.
- Grand Prize: “Bagala Devi Objective”, M.T. Reiten
- First Runner-up: “Spinners”, Kate MacEachern
- Second Runner-up (tie): “Sample Return”, C. Stuart Hardwick
- Second Runner-up (tie): “The Caretaker”, Tiffany Smith
Judges for the contest were David Drake and the editors of Baen Books.
The Grand Prize winning story will be featured on the Baen website in June 2020. The author ...Read MoreRead more
Sean Adams, The Heap (Morrow 1/20) Debut novel about the collapse of “Los Verticalés” – a socially stratified high-rise that once stood 500 stories tall – and the survivors who search for family among its rubble. A social commentary that’s as incisively satirical as the best of Thomas Pynchon and J.G. Ballard.
Mike Chen, A Beginning at the End (Mira 1/20) You don’t often come across post-apocalyptic tales full ...Read MoreRead more
Trinity Sight, Jennifer Givhan (Blackstone 978-1-53855-672-6, $25.99, 288pp, hc) October 2019.
There’s a lot to love about Trinity Sight, a dense debut novel packed with Native stories and myths, conceived and plotted as carefully as a nationwide conference, full of organic stakes and interesting characters. There are also significant imperfections: an author who gets too far ahead of her audience sometimes, a narrator whose stubborn streak makes her ...Read MoreRead more
CoNZealand, the 78th Worldcon, has announced it will be the first ever “virtual Worldcon.” Con-chairs Kelly Buehler and Norman Cates said,
This has been an incredibly difficult decision, but one that had to be made now to give our guests and members some certainty during this extraordinary time for the world.
The changes are coming fast and furious as New Zealand enters a four week lockdown. We are all dealing ...Read MoreRead more
Amid growing coronavirus concerns, some booksellers and distributors have canceled new magazine orders.
Barnes and Noble announced they will cease taking new magazine product, effective March 23, 2020, across all stores. Krifka Steffey, director of newsstand merchandising, said,
We will continue to sell the product currently on our Newsstands, and will look forward to the day that we can re-establish this critical part of our bookstore offering.
Diamond Comic Distributors ...Read MoreRead more
Beneath Ceaseless Skies 10/24/19, 11/21/19 Strange Horizons 10/19, 11/19 Mysterion 11-12/19
Beneath Ceaseless Skies opens issue #289 with Norse fiction from Rich Larson in “The Star Plague“. Larson ratchets up the tension masterfully as we learn of Bragi, a Viking rescued from some traumatic event by British monks. Bragi is entirely disaffected, which isn’t helped by a language barrier, as some force starts stealing corpses and he is ...Read MoreRead more
Gareth Lyn Powell was born September 3, 1970 in Clifton, Bristol, England; he grew up in Bristol, and lives there still. He studied humanities and creative writing at the University of Glamorgan (later renamed the University of South Wales). He has taught creative writing at various universities. He worked in call centers and in marketing before turning to writing more seriously in 2008.
Powell began publishing SF with “Morning Star” ...Read MoreRead more
…And Other Disasters, Malka Older (Mason Jar Press 978-0996103787, $17.95, 201pp, tp) November 2019.
Although it’s a slim book, the nine stories and three poems that feature in Malka Older’s debut collection …And Other Disasters showcase an eclectic and vivid imagination. This includes a future history detailing the break-up of the United States of America (cleverly split into seven individual sections across the collection to mimic the dissolution of ...Read MoreRead more
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) have announced that this year’s Nebula Conference, scheduled for May 28-31, 2020 in Woodland Hills CA, will be held as an entirely virtual event.
In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the board of SFWA feels that holding an in-person event this May would be irresponsible.
The Nebula Conference will include panels, solo presentations, conference mentorships, workshops, forums, chats, and virtual room ...Read MoreRead more
Dreamspinner Press, a small publisher of LGBTQ romance founded in 2006, has reportedly failed to pay many authors their royalties; by some reports, hundreds of writers have been affected. The press has more than 3,000 titles in its inventory – some genre-related – and authors say that as early as 2017, royalties began to arrive late, or not at all, or, at least once, in the form of a postdated ...Read MoreRead more
I Hope You Get This Message, Farah Naz Rishi (Harper Teen 978-0-06-274145-5, $17.99, 420pp, hc) October 2019.
It’s possibly the end of the world, according to the aliens threatening everyone on Earth, and three teens are grappling with what they want to get done in the seven days they have left. Cate wants to find the father she never knew, Adeem wants to find his beloved older sister, and ...Read MoreRead more
Stanislaw Lem’s The Seventh Voyage, Jon J. Muth (Graphix/Scholastic 978-0-545-00462-6, $19.99, 80pp, hc) October 2019. Cover by John J. Muth.
Imagine Buster Keaton in space, trying to fix his disabled craft while beset by a growing number of paradoxically created versions of himself, and you have an idea of the deadpan insanity that informs The Seventh Voyage, Stanislaw Lem’s droll, subversive tale of hapless Spaceman Tichy’s space-time dilemma. ...Read MoreRead more
Penguin Random House has removed its audiobooks from various unlimited audio subscription programs worldwide, including Storytel and Scribd. An announcement from PRH explained that the company “has decided that at this stage, we will not participate in unlimited access subscription models. Our decision was made collectively by the company’s international leadership team to preserve a diversity of content in the marketplace and the actual and perceived long-term value of our ...Read MoreRead more
The Water Dancer, Ta-Nehisi Coates (One World 978-0-399-59059-7, $28.00, 408pp, hc) September 2019.
I missed Ta-Nehisi Coates’s first novel The Water Dancer when it appeared last fall to generally glowing reviews, and it didn’t seem to garner much attention from fantasy readers in general, despite a key fantastic trope being central to its plot. Reading it now, after reviewing Rivers Solomon’s The Deep, it seems apparent that Coates’s ...Read MoreRead more
The Bookseller has announced the shortlists for the 2020 British Book Awards, including several titles of genre interest.
- The Testaments, Margaret Atwood (Nan A. Talese; Chatto & Windus)
- The Book of Dust: The Secret Commonwealth, Philip Pullman (Knopf; Penguin UK & David Fickling)
Début Book of the Year
- The Binding, Bridget Collins (Morrow; Borough)
Audiobook Book of the Year
- The Handmaid’s Tale