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New Arrivals
compiled by Neil Walsh

Some of the more exciting book recently received here at the SF Site office include new works from Clive Barker, Julian May, Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson, Terry Brooks, Ursula K. Le Guin, James Lovegrove, Gwyneth Jones, Stephen Baxter, Elizabeth Moon, and John C. Wright.

As for my own reading, I had been delving into the early works of Joseph Conrad recently and when I came up for air, I realized I was in need of something light and frivolous. Here's what I discovered:

  • Beatnik Rutabagas From Beyond the Stars by Quentin Dodd (Farrar Straus Giroux, trade, September 2001, USA)
        Teenaged Walter Nutria is picked up by a spaceship of barely competent aliens from Lirg to lead them in their war against the Wotwots (who really do resemble beatnik rutabagas, complete with goatees and calling people 'Daddy-o'). The Lirgonians figure Walter's gotta be the best general, since he's got the best sci-fi video rental record. Who else would know more about space battle tactics and interstellar strategy? Right?
       "...why is it so dark in here?"
        "Please forgive us, Walter Nutria," the voice said. "We need your assistance desperately, but we are afraid that our appearance will be frightening to you. Therefore, we planned to keep the interior dark, so as not to be traumatizing."
        "And then you would turn up the lights later, once I'd gotten used to you?" Walter asked.
        "What?" The voice sounded confused.
        "When were you going to turn up the lights?"
        "We . . . weren't."
        "So you can see in the dark like this?"
        There was a pause. "No."
        "Maybe you'd better turn on the lights," Walter suggested.
    The story is completely implausible, frequently hilarious, and good clean fun from beginning to end.
  • Flyboy Action Figure Comes With Gasmask by Jim Munroe (HarperFlamingoCanada, trade, 248 pages, 1998, Canada)
        I wanted this novel to be better than it is. It's a fabulous title and such a zany idea: an otherwise average university student has the secret and inexplicable ability to turn himself into a fly. What does he do with this ability? Naturally, he turns to fighting injustice as a masked vigilante. The characterization is well done, but there just isn't enough story to carry them through. It seems as if the author was too enamoured of his characters to let anything really bad happen to them; with only minimal conflict, the reader is left feeling cheated. The most distressing events (some of which happen offstage) are vaguely explained away. On the other hand, it's an excellent study of off-campus student relationships -- apart from the fly thing -- including relationships with lovers, with family, with friends.
        For a different take on this novel, check out the review linked below.
    reviewSF Site Review

(Books are listed alphabetically by author. Only books received are noted.)

New Arrivals & Forthcoming Books: mid-September 2004
Rabid Transit: Petting Zoo edited by Barth Anderson, Christopher Barzak, Alan DeNiro, Kristin Livdahl
Velocity Press (chapbook, 68 pages)
Publication date: May 2004, USA
    Third in the Rabid Transit series, this chapbook features fiction from M. Rickert, John Aegard, David Moles, Jesse McManus, David Lomax, Elad Haber, and Amber van Dyk. I recently read the first of this series, Rabid Transit: New Fiction by the Ratbastards, which was comprised of one story by each of the four editors of the current volume. Two hits and two misses, but the hits were overwhelmingly good, and the styles of all four were sufficiently varied that another reader might have chosen differently. Almost certainly there will be something of interest here.

God Drug by Stephen L. Antczak, illustrated by Andy Lee
Marietta Publishing, Meisha Merlin (trade, 201 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA & Canada

Annihilation: R.A. Salvatore's War of the Spider Queen, Book 5 by Philip Athans
Forgotten Realms, Wizards of the Coast (hc, 342 pages)
Publication date: July 2004, USA & Canada & UK

Days of Magic, Nights of War: Abarat, Book 2 by Clive Barker
HarperCollins (hc, 491 pages)
Publication date: 4 October 2004, USA & Canada
    Beautifully illustrated throughout in full colour.
reviewSF Site Review of Abarat, Book 1

Star Bores by Steve Barlow & Steve Skidmore
HarperCollins (undersized hc, 400 pages)
Publication date: 20 September 2004, UK
    Star Wars parody.

Exultant: Destiny's Children, Book 2 by Stephen Baxter
Victor Gollancz (trade, 490 pages)
Publication date: 23 September 2004, UK
reviewSF Site Review of Coalescent, Book 1

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
Voyager, HarperCollins (mm, 184 pages)
Publication date: 5 August 2004, UK
    50th anniversary edition of a classic. If you haven't read this before, don't pass up this chance.

Tanequil: High Druid of Shannara, Book 2 by Terry Brooks
Simon & Schuster (hc, 357 pages)
Publication date: 6 September 2004, UK

The Lord of the Wrinkles by Leah Carson
Excellent Words (trade, 115 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA
    Parody of the films.

Alice's Journey Beyond the Moon by R.J. Carter, illustrated by Lucy Wright
Telos Publishing (trade, 98 pages)
Publication date: August 2004, UK / October 2004, USA & Canada

A Separate Power by Loren W. Cooper
Mundania Press (trade, 161 pages)
Publication date: August 2004, USA & Canada

Rabbit Head by Rebecca Dart
Alternative Comics (graphic novel, oversized chapbook, 24 pages)
Publication date: July 2004, USA
    A story with no words.

The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, 17th Annual Collection edited by Ellen Datlow, Kelly Link & Gavin J. Grant
St. Martin's Griffin (trade, 564 pages)
Publication date: August 2004, USA & Canada
reviewSF Site Review of 14th Annual Collection

The Faery Reel: Tales from the Twilight Realm edited by Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling
Viking (hc, 532 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA & Canada

The Simulacra by Philip K. Dick
SF Masterworks #57, Gollancz (trade, 220 pages)
Publication date: 9 September 2004, UK

Goddess of the Ice Realm: Lord of the Isles, Book 5 by David Drake
Gollancz (mm, 496 pages)
Publication date: 9 September 2004, UK
reviewSF Site Review of Queen of Demons, Book 3

Murder by Magic: 20 Tales of Crime and the Supernatural edited by Rosemary Edghill
Aspect, Warner Books (trade, 352 pages)
Publication date: October 2004, USA & Canada

Naked Empire by Terry Goodkind
Voyager, HarperCollins (mm, 679 pages)
Publication date: 4 October 2004, UK

The Rose in Twelve Petals and Other Stories by Theodora Goss
Small Beer Press (chapbook, 60 pages)
Publication date: October 2004, USA

Incompetence by Rob Grant
Gollancz (mm, 325 pages)
Publication date: 1 October 2004, UK
reviewSF Site Review

Dune: The Battle of Corrin by Brian Herbert & Kevin J. Anderson
Tor (hc, 623 pages)
Publication date: August 2004, USA & Canada

The Dark Ascent by Walter H. Hunt
Tor (hc, 416 pages)
Publication date: 28 August 2004, USA & Canada

The White Elephant by Damon Hurd, art by Christopher Steininger
Alternative Comics (trade graphic novel, 64 pages)
Publication date: July 2004, USA

Life by Gwyneth Jones
Aqueduct Press (trade, 376 pages)
Publication date: October 2004, USA

Over the Edge: The Beginning by Marilyn W. Lathrop
PublishAmerica (trade, 264 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA

Witch Ember by John Lawson
AmErica House (trade, 489 pages)
Publication date: May 2002, USA

Gifts by Ursula K. Le Guin
Harcourt (hc, 288 pages)
Publication date: September 2004, USA & Canada
    For readers 12 and up.

Very Far Away from Anywhere Else by Ursula K. Le Guin
Harcourt (mm, 135 pages)
Publication date: September 2004, USA & Canada
    First published in 1976. For readers 12 and up.

Worldstorm by James Lovegrove
Victor Gollancz (trade, 453 pages)
Publication date: 23 September 2004, UK

Path of the Bold edited by James Lowder
Guardians of Order (trade, 208 pages)
Publication date: May 2004, USA & Canada
    Anthology of superhero fiction.

Conqueror's Moon: The Boreal Moon Tale, Book 1 by Julian May
Voyager, HarperCollins (mm, 502 pages)
Publication date: 4 October 2004, UK
reviewSF Site Review

Ironcrown Moon: The Boreal Moon Tale, Book 2 by Julian May
Voyager, HarperCollins (hc, 502 pages)
Publication date: 4 October 2004, UK

Encounters: An Anthology of Australian Speculative Fiction edited by Maxine McArthur & Donna Maree Hanson
CSFG Publishing (trade, 213 pages)
Publication date: August 2004, Australia

Absolute Values by Andrew R. Menard
Princess Tides Publishing (hc, 376 pages)
Publication date (forthcoming): November 2004, USA

Firethorn by Sarah Micklem
Scribner (hc, 387 pages)
Publication date: September 2004, USA & Canada

Marque and Reprisal by Elizabeth Moon
Del Rey, Ballantine (hc, 324 pages)
Publication date: 5 October 2004, USA & Canada

New Worlds edited by Michael Moorcock
Thunder's Mouth Press (trade, 386 pages)
Publication date: 30 September 2004, USA
    Republication of a classic anthology of speculative fiction from the 1960s, including tales from the likes of M. John Harrison, J.G. Ballard, Thomas M. Disch, John T. Sladek, Brian W. Aldiss, Norman Spinrad, John Clute, and many more.

The Soddit by A.R.R.R. Roberts
Gollancz (mm, 344 pages)
Publication date: 9 September 2004, UK
    Subtitled, "or, Let's Cash in Again," this is yet another Tolkien parody.

The Fetter Mission by M.L. Roland
PublishAmerica (trade, 185 pages)
Publication date: January 2004, USA

Tales of the Black Earth by R.A. Roth
Infinity Publishing.com (trade, 383 pages)
Publication date: July 2004, USA

Salmon Doubts by Adam Sacks
Alternative Comics (trade graphic novel, 120 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA

Thumbprints by Pamela Sargent
Golden Gryphon (hc, 281 pages)
Publication date: October 2004, USA & Canada
    Collection of short fiction.

Houdini's Last Illusion by Steve Savile
Telos (trade, 80 pages)
Publication date: July 2004, UK / November 2004, USA & Canada

A King in Exile: The Last Book of the Kings, Vol. 1 by H.M. Snow
iUniverse (trade & hc, 338 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA

Rosetta2: A Comics Anthology edited by Ng Suat Tong
Alternative Comics (trade graphic novel, 264 pages)
Publication date: 2004, USA
    A wide array of styles from a range of artists.

Karma On Tap: The Online Buddhist Revolution by R.B. Wilcox
Infinity Publishing.com (trade, 151 pages)
Publication date: June 2004, USA

The Sundering: Dread Empire's Fall, Book 2 by Walter Jon Williams
Pocket Books, Simon & Schuster UK (mm, 452 pages)
Publication date: 4 October 2004, UK
reviewSF Site Review

The Last Guardian of Everness: The War of the Dreaming, Book 1 by John C. Wright
Tor (hc, 332 pages)
Publication date: 28 August 2004, USA & Canada

Magazines

Alchemy, No. 2, 2004, USA
Contributors to this issue include: Theodora Goss, Holly Phillips, Barth Anderson, Sarah Monette, Amber van Dyk, Dale Bailey.

Electric Velocipede, issue 7, Fall 2004, USA
Contributors to this issue include: Liz Williams, Chris Roberson, Christopher Rowe, Ren Holton, Kiel Stuart, Sharon E. Woods, Andrew Cohen, Mark Rich, Perry Slaughter, Steve Nagy.

Fantasy & Science Fiction, October/November 2004, USA & Canada
Contributors to this issue include: Lisa Goldstein, Daniel Abraham, John Morressy, Gene Wolfe, Richard Chwedyk, Michael Kandel, Steven Utley, Dale Bailey, Michael Bishop, M. Rickert, Robert Reed.

NFG, issue 5, vol. 2, 2004, Canada & USA & UK
Contributors to this issue include: Sean Dent, Paul Haines, Gryffyd Eamonn Dempsey, Scott Hofmann-Reardon, Brandon Alspaugh, Judd Hampton, Marcus Grimm, Monte Davis, and more.

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