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The winners of the British Fantasy Awards were announced in London, UK on September 21, 2002.
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White Apples White Apples by Jonathan Carroll
reviewed by William Thompson
A posthumous fable of resurrection, a meditation upon the nature of memory and identity, and a frank and at times moving affirmation of the redemptive power of love, this parable is framed equally by the author's vision of a moral universe that extends beyond the theories of physics that also serve to inform it. The novel opens with Vincent Ettrich, a master of the male gaze, whose love of women has led him into yet another affair that soon takes a decidedly bizarre turn. While dining with his new-found femme, Vincent bumps into a business acquaintance who appears very surprised to see him. No more surprised than Vincent when he discovers that his friend is actually dead.

Frenzetta, Lord Soho, and Zarzuela Frenzetta, Lord Soho, and "Zarzuela" by Richard Calder
reviewed by David Soyka
Whereas Cytheria posits three "realities" that begin to bleed into one another, Frenzetta takes place at a time in which the connections between these realities has been severed. The bizarre results are twofold: much of humanity has mutated into "the perverse" -- beings whose DNA have become entwined with other animal forms -- and much of human technology has been rendered useless and a sort of retro-18th century ethos prevails.

Paul Park
Paul Park A Conversation With Paul Park
An interview with Greg L. Johnson
On starting out by writing novels:
"I think a lot of SF writers grow up reading SF stories. And then when they themselves start to write, it's natural for them to work in that form -- copying what they like, and trying to outdo it. But I never read short stories until later. They tend to be very much about ideas, and I never used to like ideas much -- never could see the point of them, never could see how they helped you figure anything out."

If Lions Could Speak and Other Stories If Lions Could Speak and Other Stories by Paul Park
reviewed by Rich Horton
This is the author's first collection, and it assembles most, if not all, of his published short fiction to date, with one story first published here, two other stories new to 2002 and stories dating back to 1992, as well as an excerpt from Soldiers of Paradise. It is truly a first-rate group of stories.

The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque The Portrait of Mrs. Charbuque by Jeffrey Ford
reviewed by William Thompson
As should comes as no surprise to those who've been following the author's career, he has turned in another superlative novel, rich in setting and imagery, designed to both confound and tantalize his audience, with a tale wondrously plotted and written with an intelligence at once playful yet serious. Possessing elements of mystery and horror reminiscent of "Rappaccini's Daughter," or the more contemporary wonder of Jonathan Carroll, this is a work that bridges literature and genre, reaffirming again that the fantastic can offer much more than simple tales of trolls and dragons.

Across the Nightingale Floor Across the Nightingale Floor by Lian Hearn
reviewed by Cindy Lynn Speer
Tomasu is one of The Hidden, a group whose religion is so persecuted that they hide in their villages, resorting to secret signs drawn against the inside of the hand as a means of identifying themselves when among strangers. Tomasu is a wanderer, and it is his wanderings that take him away from his village in time enough to avoid the massacre of his family. Lord Iida has long hated the Hidden, and has taken the opportunity to wipe their kind from the earth. Tomasu returns a little too early, and only through fortune and the intervention of a mysterious warrior is he able to escape his village's fate.

The Green Man The Green Man edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
reviewed by Steven H Silver
The editors tackle the topic of the titular figure which appears throughout pre-Christian (and post-Christian) folklore in Europe, as well as in the lore of other cultures around the world. Although the stories are ostensibly aimed at a young adult audience, many of the stories are equally enjoyable by adults who are not so young any more. There are several strong stories, including Jeffrey Ford's "The Green Word," M. Shayne Bell's "The Pagodas of Ciboure," Emma Bull's "Joshua Tree," and Charles de Lint's "Somewhere in My Mind There is a Painting Box."

SF Site News SF Site News
compiled by Steven H Silver
Every day, items of interest to you arrive in our email. Our bi-monthly format doesn't lend itself to daily updates. However, this is a small inconvenience to our Contributing Editor Steven H Silver. He's begun a new column which will fill you in on recent news in science fiction. We'll be updating the page as he sends in new items.

New Arrivals New Arrivals
compiled by Neil Walsh
Some of the books newly arrived at the SF Site office include new novels from C.J. Cherryh, Robin Hobb, Nina Kiriki Hoffman, Harry Turtledove, Raymond E. Feist, Allen Steele, the latest Martin Greenberg collection, and the 35th anniversary edition of Harlan Ellison's classic anthology, Dangerous Visions.

Guardians of the Lost Guardians of the Lost by Margaret Weis and Tracy Hickman
reviewed by Cindy Lynn Speer
Gustav, the human Dominion Lord, has finally found the human race's piece of the Sovereign Stone. As he makes the journey to return to his lands, he is attacked by a corpse, and is mortally wounded. Before he dies, he is found by a group of three people who will become the centre of this book: Bashan of the pecwae race, who are a group of small, nimble creatures who would rather speak to animals than anything else, Jessan, an unproven youth of the Native American-flavored Trevenici warrior tribe, and Wolfram, a Dwarf. They take Gustav to the pecwae village, but even their best healers can not mend his wounds...

Sol's Children Sol's Children edited by Jean Rabe and Martin H. Greenberg
reviewed by Rich Horton
This anthology organized around the loose thematic link of "Sol's Children" being the planets, moons, and asteroids of our solar system. The editors have put fairly strong stories in the opening and closing positions. The opener, Timothy Zahn's "Old-Boy Network" is set on Mars. The protagonist is a handicapped young man, and we soon learn that he is handicapped for a rather scary reason. The finishing story is Michael A. Stackpole's "Least of My Brethren", in which a priest visits a mining asteroid after a disaster, and must decide whether a dying miner is worthy of Extreme Unction.

Light Light by M. John Harrison
reviewed by Jeff VanderMeer
Some books make you want to run for a thousand miles, to dive off of buildings just for the burn of the fall. Some books are like drugs, adrenalin rushes, fireworks. This book is not just among the best SF novels of the year -- it's without question the best read of the year. He has jettisoned all banality, dead spots, padding, and come up with a novel that moves without sacrificing depth. Not since Stepan Chapman's The Troika and Iain M. Banks' Use of Weapons has a novel managed to so single-handedly revitalize and re-energize the SF field.

Dr. Franklin's Island Dr. Franklin's Island by Ann Halam
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Semirah Garson thinks she is ready for the unexpected, but a structured, televised trip to Ecuador with Planet Savers is not the adventure she's going to get. Before the painfully shy narrator has a chance to try to get comfortable with her fellow Young Conservationists, most of them are lost in a suspicious air crash. She and Miranda and Arnie find themselves trapped on a deserted island where they must deal with the elements and each other to survive.

Future Sports Future Sports edited by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
Mixing sports and science fiction can be a bit of an oil and water proposition. Science fiction fans and sports fans have some things in common, they are passionate about their particular predilection, and both have sometimes been known to dress unconventionally in public. Yet, for whatever reasons, the two groups do not overlap much. Now comes an anthology where both the editors and the writers, for the most part, get it right.

Never After Never After by Rebecca Lickiss
reviewed by Cindy Lynn Speer
Prince Althelstan wants to get married, but his parents, mostly because they're trying to keep him from marrying his cousin Vevilia (as if she would have him!) tell him that he can only marry a princess. The only available princess he can find is still a toddler, and so he sets out on a quest. He manages to find an enchanted castle, buried by weeds and herbage. He is not surprised to find the inhabitants asleep. He kisses every woman in the place, to no avail.

John Betancourt A Conversation With John Betancourt
An interview with Jayme Lynn Blaschke
On writing an Amber cycle book:
"Unfortunately, Zelazny is fading in the public's memory. I have a feeling that, if not for new projects such as The Dawn of Amber, he will be completely out of print and forgotten in 20 years. I note that Zelazny's regular publishers have let most of his titles go out of print. It's a sad fact of publishing, but new books from authors keep their older titles in print and selling, even in the case of classics. Compare Roger Zelazny to classic authors of the 60s and 70s who died 20 years ago, and the future for Zelazny isn't looking pretty. Leigh Brackett, James Blish, etc. published scores of great titles... and they're gone now."

Trapped Trapped by James Alan Gardner
reviewed by Donna McMahon
There must be more to life than this, thinks Philemon Abu Dhubhai, and his friends agree. Stuck in dead-end careers as teachers in a second rate sorcery school, they amuse themselves by drinking and brawling in local taverns -- that is, until someone assassinates a student and they are launched upon a Quest that will bring them up against criminal gangs, extraterrestrials, necromancers, biological warfare, and the amorous demands of Gretchen Kinnderboom.

Firefly Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick tells how he reached his conclusion that local theatres have a policy never to screen any film that gets an A rating. And he gives us his views of recent TV episodes of Firefly, Enterprise and some thoughts on Birds of Prey, Smallville, and Buffy.

Second Looks

The Hope The Hope by James Lovegrove
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Built by a philanthropist whose mad dream it was, the Hope journeys across an apparently endless sea, carrying more than a million people in its gargantuan belly. Once, the passengers believed they sailed toward a better life on a distant shore, but so many years have passed without a landfall that this dream has been mostly forgotten, and many of the Hope's denizens no longer remember why they came aboard. Some, born on the ship, have never known another existence. Over time the Hope has corroded, eaten up by rust and salt, and so have the lives of the people on board. Violence and privation are everywhere; safety and compassion

Conan the Liberator Conan the Liberator by L. Sprague de Camp and Lin Carter
reviewed by Cindy Lynn Speer
Numedides, King of Aquilonia is mad. In his madness and desire for immortality he heaps cruelty upon cruelty on the heads of his people. He and the wizard Thulandra Thuu have been kidnapping maidens, torturing them and taking their blood to complete the ritual that will grant them eternal life. Them, in that the wizard has no intention on using the ritual to help the king... no, the king is merely a guinea pig.

The Salmon of Doubt The Salmon of Doubt by Douglas Adams
reviewed by Jayme Lynn Blaschke
This is a sad, sad book. That much is obvious from the moment one opens it up -- the large type gives it away. There's padding here. Lots of it. Never mind that every page serves as a reminder that the author will write no more, will never again miss deadlines by spectacularly wide margins. This book was inevitable, however, given the fact he was almost a decade late on delivering a novel for which he'd been advanced an obscene amount of money.

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