The Darwin Elevator by Jason M. Hough
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
The backstory begins with the appearance of a an alien craft in Earth orbit, a craft which quickly manufactures and connects
a space elevator to Darwin, Australia. Five years later, no aliens have appeared, but people begin to die in large numbers. A few
are left as violent sub-humans, fewer still have an immunity to the virus. The only refuge is around Darwin, where the elevator
broadcasts a field that inhibits the disease, and protects the refugees.
Charm by Sarah Pinborough
reviewed by Mario Guslandi
First of all the main characters are quite changed. Cinderella is not the humble, innocent girl mistreated by her bad stepmother
and stepsisters but a determined, ambitious young woman whose aim is to become the bride of a beautiful, wealthy Prince by
using the magic powers of a mysterious "good fairy."
Baby Killers by Jay Lake
reviewed by Trent Walters
It sketches seemingly random scratches on a broad canvas of a Philadelphia steampunk -- where the
Queen of England, presumably, still reigns. The connection between scratches gradually take shape.
The bleak, black comedy, opens with a mad scientist, Dr. M.T. Scholes
experimenting on children, cobbling them together into mechanical human brass spiders that
will rid the world of the unemployed.
Kingdoms of Caelum: Autumn of the War Queen by N.M. McIntyre
reviewed by Sandra Scholes
Caelum is a realm made up of several Kingdoms and they have lived in peace for several years but when Katla Veurink has left her
kingdom she is out in the open, prey to many who would want to see her dead if they knew who she was. She doesn't act like a victim
though. She has to choose her own path and fight against those who have betrayed her.
Drowned in Thunder by Christopher L. Bennett
an audiobook review by Susan Dunman
It's just a typical evening for Peter Parker, swinging from skyscraper to skyscraper through mid-town Manhattan as
Spider-Man. Always on the lookout for criminals, be they super-villains or the average devious crook, it doesn't take Spidey long
to find and interrupt a robbery in progress. Working hard to prevent injury to by-standers, Spider-Man successfully delivers the
would-be robbers to the police, but the next day's issue of the Daily Bugle paints Spider-Man as the real criminal. Tired of
The Friday Society by Adrienne Kress
reviewed by Sherwood Smith
Cora, Michiko, and Nellie are all assistants, Cora to a lord who is an inventor in secret, and an MP in his public life,
Nellie to a mysterious magician whose background is not clear, except he's non-English, and Michiko to a bigoted brute of
a con man named Sir Callum Fielding-Shaw, who makes his living supposedly teaching self-defense. Michiko does what little
teaching that takes place, while Sir Callum parties.
The three girls meet accidentally one night when they all stumble upon a head without a body. Then they find out
that someone is murdering flower girls. Are the murders related?
Oz Reimagined edited by John Joseph Adams & Douglas Cohen
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
This anthology presents fifteen short stories by well known authors, delivering varied approaches and inconsistent
quality. Some, are true to the original themes of L. Frank Baum, others go completely off the deep end and really have very little
to do with what people think of when they hear the name Oz. One should note that this collection is not suitable for younger
children, containing as it does several examples of very dark and very adult writing.
a column by Rick Klaw and Mark London Williams
Welcome to the sixth annual foray into the best that Mark London Williams and Rick Klaw read this previous year. As been the trend of the past two years,
their reading choices have deviated wildly with only one book being mentioned on both of the top ten lists (it'll be revealed
in the second part of top 5 of the top ten selections).
Without further ado, here's selection 10 through 6.
Watching the Future
Jay Lake's Process of Writing by Jay Lake
a column by Derek Johnson
When Derek looked back at 2013, he was surprised at how little the genre pictures shone. Forget the obvious awful
examples; the never-ending stream of terrible sequels and remakes never offered him much anyway, so he never felt badly
about returning derision. But others that showed promise never really delivered. One combined
the 70s disaster picture with a couple of cool Phil-Dickian riffs but never gelled into a coherent picture.
Another had giant robots and giant monsters. It was like the best things Derek could have asked for
when he was younger.
compiled by Neil Walsh
We're looking at plenty of new books for the holiday season, including the latest from Stephen Donaldson, Sharon Lee & Steve Miller, K.W. Jeter, Mercedes Lackey, Mike Resnick, Ben Bova, David Drake, and many others.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
a movie review by Rick Norwood
How can you not love a story with a heroine named Katniss Everdeen?
The Hunger Games franchise is a high concept series of books and movies. Kids are put in an arena and only one can come
out alive. Itís reminiscent of Beyond Thunderdome.
reviewed by Trent Walters
The book consists of blog posts organized around certain subjects: story ideas, outlines, drafts, world-building, revision,
writing habits, story length, genre, writing the other, critiques, reviews, rejections, publishing, and the business end. Clearly,
this is not your typical writing book. The articles eschew well-covered territory of traditional story parts in favor of less
familiar territory with surprisingly mature attitudes towards author jealousy, rejections and negative reviews.
The High Crusade by Poul Anderson
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
The year is 1345, and Sir Roger Baron de Tourneville is mustering troops ready to join King
Edward III in his struggle against France. The knight's day is interrupted by a two-thousand foot long flying machine, containing an
advance force of Wersgorix. These are aliens intent on world conquest, who see the denizens of Earth as mere
primitives. Unfortunately for them, Sir Roger and company are combat hardened, and don't take kindly to being shot at.
The Collected Stories of Robert Silverberg: Volume 6, Multiples, 1983-1987 by Robert Silverberg
reviewed by D. Douglas Fratz
It is easy to argue that over the past five decades, Robert Silverberg has been the field's most prolific author
of superior science fiction of all lengths, especially short fiction. Although his short fiction has
been featured in a number of previous collections -- some of which have been retrospective volumes with
titles that include "best of" or "collected stories" -- this new Subterranean Press series
of The Collected Stories of Robert Silverberg is a welcome and necessary addition to the library
of any science fiction reader.