Renegade's Magic by Robin Hobb
reviewed by Dustin Kenall
If America has an existentialist fantasist, her name is Robin Hobb. Her writing, unique in a genre overpopulated with adolescent
sword-and-sorcery epics, avoids tired retreads of the quest format perfected over a century ago through the prose-poetry of Lord
Dunsany and the mythopoeic majesty of E.R. Eddison. It earns mention in the small but elite company of writers whose
methods -- ranging as wide as the multilayered complexity of Robert Jordan, the bracing realism of George R.R. Martin,
and the philosophical literacy of Philip Pullman -- are producing a renaissance in the field. Rather than offering mindless
escapism, Robin Hobb's works utilize fantasy conventions to explore weighty concepts such as identity and fellowship,
rights and duties, and permanence and change.
Dust by Elizabeth Bear
reviewed by Paul Kincaid
One of the forms from which science fiction and fantasy emerged was the medieval romance in which a chivalrous, heroic knight,
often of super-human ability, abides by strict chivalric codes of conduct while on a quest in which he fights and defeats
monsters and giants, thereby winning favour with a lady. There is often an allegorical aspect to the quest and the various
opponents overcome, and a sense that the whole enterprise and its outcome are pre-ordained.
Now put this description in purely science fictional terms...
A Posse of Princesses by Sherwood Smith
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
In a world of relatively peaceful small kingdoms where magic is operated by mages and the usual feudal trappings exist, Lios,
Crown Prince of Vesarja, invites the young princesses and princes of the world to a several day coming out party
in his parent's castle. Rhis, princess of a small remote mountain kingdom, who has grown up stifled by protocol,
is one of those who attends the festivities. When Iardith, a beautiful but vain and self-centered princess is
kidnapped, Rhis leads a mounted rescue party of princess-friends.
Sunrise Alley by Catherine Asaro
Performed by Hillary Huber
an audio review podcast by Brian Price
A man, barely alive, is washed ashore during a violent, raging storm and is found and nursed back to health by Samantha Bryton, a retired, reclusive and brilliant Silicon Valley scientist. The man, who was supposed to have been killed in an automobile accident weeks earlier, is actually an illegally built android, an EI (Evolutionary Intelligence). Soon Samantha and Turner Pascal are on the run from Charon, Turner's evil creator, the military (everybody's on the run from the military), and other EIs and AIs from the notorious Sunrise Alley, where many rogue Artificial intelligences hide while planning an attack on humans.
Click on cover/link to get the MP3 podcast file.
Indigara by Tanith Lee
reviewed by Kit O'Connell
What's so bothersome about this book? Is it Jet, the novel's almost
totally passive protagonist, whose one self-motivated act in the entire book is to run away from home? Maybe it is Otis,
her robotic dog -- a character who could have been fascinating but instead exists solely to move the plot along by deducing
things periodically (thus keeping Jet from ever figuring something out for herself)? Perhaps it is Jet's family and the
showbiz caricatures that populate this novel, almost none ever rising to three-dimensionality?
Postscripts Magazine: by Author
compiled by Rodger Turner
In the spring of 2004, PS Publishing launched a new magazine called Postscripts.
Originally, the magazine was to be digest-sized featuring about 60,000 words of fiction, a guest editorial,
book reviews, and the occasional non-fiction article in each issue. Fiction includes SF, fantasy, horror, and crime/suspense.
The book is produced in two formats: numbered, limited edition in hard cover signed by all contributors and
a perfect bound paper cover version.
Swiftly by Adam Roberts
reviewed by Nick Gevers
Swiftly by Adam Roberts -- not to be confused with his similarly titled collection from Night Shade Books a few years
ago -- is an enormously ambitious novel, a steampunk epic of considerable force and ingenuity. It is also a deeply bizarre
book, whose protagonists, sometimes to the detriment of the plot, conduct a love affair based on disgust and the stimulating
odor of excrement.
Saint-Germain: Memoirs by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
Grimspace by Ann Aguirre
reviewed by Mario Guslandi
Are you sick and tired of vampires? Many are but there is one distinct exception, Chelsea Quinn Yarbro's Comte de Saint-Germain. Created
more than thirty-five years ago with the novel Hotel Transylvania, Saint-Germain has been the main character in a long
series of novels, the latest of which is Borne in Blood.
In addition, the undead has been starring in a bunch of short stories and novelettes, now assembled here for the first time.
SF Site's Best Read of the Year: 2007
compiled by Neil Walsh
Come and see what we consider to be the best of what we read last year, on the SF Site's 11th annual Editors'
Choice Top 10 List -- our official SF Site Best SF and Fantasy Books of 2007. Last issue we showed you how you voted
on the Readers' Choice Top 10; you may be as surprised as we were to compare the two lists. There's so little overlap
it almost seems like the SF Site readers and reviewers aren't reading many of the same books. But this just means that
when you look at both lists you'll find even more recommendations for great books to read.
Torchwood Magazine #1
reviewed by Sandy Auden
Following the adventures of Time Agent Captain Jack Harkness and his outside-the-law, alien-investigating elite team,
Torchwood has become a firm favourite in both the UK and the US.
Now, Titan have launched the Torchwood magazine to take you behind the scenes and introduce you to all the who's
and how's that make Torchwood tick.
compiled by Neil Walsh
Some of the spring releases to arrive on our doorstep recently include the latest from Greg Egan, Sarah Zettel, Peter F. Hamilton, Alan Campbell, Anne McCaffrey & Elizabeth Ann Scarborough, Alma Alexander, Barth Anderson, and many more.
compiled by Susan Dunman
At times, it's more convenient (and enjoyable) to hear the latest in science fiction and fantasy. Recent
audiobook releases include works by S.M. Sterling, Frank Herbert, Casandra Claire, Piers Anthony, and R.A. Salvatore.
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick offers his thoughts on believing everything he reads such as the start of the next season of Stargate: Atlantis,
some of the points made in the book, The World Is Flat, whether climate change is a hoax and did Barak Obama attend a madrasa.
He also found time to see to see 10,000 A.D. and to do a DVD review of Slings & Arrows.
reviewed by Michael M Jones
Until recently, Sirantha Jax was a superstar. Possessing a rare gene which allows a select few to jump ships
through "grimspace," and thus vastly shorten interstellar travel time, she had it made, having made more jumps and discovered
more planets than anyone else working for the Corp. But all jumpers burn out sooner or later, so she knew her time was
finite. And then came the crash on Matins IV, an accident only which she survived. She was locked away, interrogated and tortured
and left to rot.