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SF Insite: John O'Neill wonders "who's going to take the bullet this time?" in his column: SF, the Internet, and Doom in Colorado.
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Fan votes have been counted and here are the Hugo Award Nominees: read them all yet?
The Independent Press Roundtable: drop in to hear some of the field's most dynamic publishers discuss topics of growing concern to the industry.
Dan Simmons Reading List: He's won just about every major award for his writing. Try a few of his books and you'll see why.
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Our Contents Page highlights reviews of Singer from the Sea by Sheri S. Tepper, The Forest of Hours by Kerstin Ekman, The Divided by Katie Waitman and Enchantment by Orson Scott Card.
SF Site Interviews: In past issues, we've interviewed Neil Gaiman, Gregory Benford, Bruce Sterling and many others. If you missed any, here is an easy way to see which ones.
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April 1st
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Silver Birch, Blood Moon Silver Birch, Blood Moon edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
reviewed by Margo MacDonald and Katharine Mills
This is the 5th in a series of fairy tales which have been retold for adults. SF Site reviewers Margo MacDonald and Katharine Mills have come together to discuss the content of this book to see how it holds up against the rest of the series. Highlights for them include Nancy Kress' "Clad in Gossamer", "The Dybbuk in the Bottle" by Russell William Asplund, Anne Bishop's "The Wild Heart" and "The Willful Child, the Black Dog, and the Beanstalk" by Melanie Tem.

The Red Sky File The Red Sky File by Denise Vitola
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Someone or something has decided to eliminate the "peacekeepers" of the River Patrol. In an unusually grisly manner. Call in Ty Merrick -- District Marshall, top detective, and sometime werewolf -- to solve it. Teamed with personal physician Gibson and partner LaRue, she is the last hope for their rapidly thinning ranks.

The Crook Factory The Crook Factory by Dan Simmons
reviewed by Rodger Turner
Cuba, 1942: Dan Simmons has captured the atmosphere of the time perfectly. He takes the characters through the hard decisions which lead to betrayal, death and patriotic integrity. Because you don't know who to trust, all you have is your wits and your gun.

New Arrivals Mid-April Books
compiled by John O'Neill
Over a decade ago the fantasy novel collided with the Role Playing Game, producing a number of bestsellers (such as TSR's DragonLance and Forgotten Realms books), and bringing the genre a new audience. Today it's happening with computer games: Doom, Descent, Star Wars: Dark Forces, Resident Evil, and many others are spawning novels and anthologies. Only time will tell if this is a fad or the start of a new growth spurt in the field -- but you can judge the books for yourself today.

Into the Darkness Into the Darkness by Harry Turtledove
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Although the battles hold up well for the single book (of a projected 6-book series), they'll begin to grow stale long before the final book. Fortunately, the author introduces enough subplots, magical, political, and romantic, that he should have enough to focus on as the series moves towards its end.

New Magazines New Magazines
compiled by John O'Neill
Looking for the best in new magazines? The FictionHome page has news, reviews and links to the finest short fiction on the market, from SF magazines to anthologies and collections.

Cloudbearer's Shadow Cloudbearer's Shadow by Ann Marston
reviewed by Todd Richmond
Cloudbearer's Shadow, the first book of a new trilogy, is a continuation of the Rune Blade trilogy. The story follows Gareth, son of Brennen ap Keylan ap Kian, exiled Prince of the Royal House of Skai. It's a typical tale of magic, intrigue and destiny -- with some Celtic flavouring.

To Hell with the Harp! To Hell with the Harp! by M.K. Twigg
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Put a bungling demon in charge of the fires of Hell and add one ineffectual angel -- disaster is unavoidable. There is no way these two clowns are going to do anything but make matters worse. The last thing the situation needs is more players...

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
In his column, Rick has scoured the listings and found what is recommended viewing for May 1999. Check it out and see if you agree.

The Black Swan The Black Swan by Mercedes Lackey
reviewed by Robert Francis
This re-telling of the "Swan Lake" story may be one of Lackey's best books yet. It's a tale of urbane madness, filial duty, greed, loyalty, and ultimately, redemption. (And there's even a lake and some maidens who get turned into swans!)

The Extremes The Extremes by Christopher Priest
reviewed by Rich Horton
The author seems fascinated with reality, and how our consciousness creates our reality. As such, he could hardly be expected to resist the temptation presented by a subject such as extremely realistic VR simulations.

Wages of Justice Wages of Justice by Kate Saundby
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Call it Peyton Space or The Young And The Weightless, and it still boils down to the same thing: space opera on the soapy side. The characters you love to hate, the melodrama, the instant love -- it's all here.

The Last Continent The Last Continent by Terry Pratchett
reviewed by Todd Richmond
This is not about Australia. Got it? Just because the continent of EcksEcksEcksEcks is this lost continent where it never rains, settled by a bunch of criminals, whose current inhabitants go around ending sentences with "no worries" doesn't mean...

Inanna of Tiamet Inanna of Tiamet by Tikvah Feinstein
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
So, you just can't get behind creationism, and Darwinism isn't quite you, either. You need a brand spanking new creation myth to satisfy that spiritual craving. Luckily for you, that very topic is addressed by several books, but not all of them are going to treat you as kindly as this one does.

A Cavern of Black Ice Excerpt: A Cavern of Black Ice by J.V. Jones
As the first book in a trilogy, it hints at the true story that will drive them all. While the plot of ancient dark magics is central to the tale, the author does a wonderful job of keeping the reader just a bit unsure of who is key to the story and which characters are going to survive its telling.

The Original Anthology Series in SF The Original Anthology Series in SF
compiled by Rich Horton
It is said that short fiction is central to SF, a convenient form for presenting a single idea, and as such is natural for a "literature of ideas". Many's the clever notion that won't carry a whole novel, but nicely drives 5000 words. This is the second installment of Rich Horton's comprehensive article on original anthology series.

Dragon's Winter Dragon's Winter by Elizabeth A. Lynn
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
There's not much that's new here: jealous twins, dark wizardry, shape-shifters, dragons, heroic warriors battling a consuming evil. But the author's character-driven approach breathes fresh life into these high fantasy conventions, and lends her narrative an emotional depth not often found in the genre.

Beast of the Heartland Beast of the Heartland by Lucius Shepard
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
There are few SF writers, actually there are few writers of any kind, whose words are worth reading for the sheer beauty of the prose. Lucius Shepard belongs near the top of that list, yet his prose style always serves the needs of the particular piece.

Pangaea Pangaea by Lisa Mason
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
Despite dropping a lot of information and world-building on the unwary reader, the author does it skillfully, chaining through the points-of-view of a group of characters whose lives will become connected by the most dangerous of threads: rebellion against the all-powerful Imperium.

Forthcoming Books Forthcoming Books
compiled by John O'Neill
Robert Silverberg adds to his Majipoor series; Timothy Zahn kicks off a tale of mystery and galactic intrigue; Gardner Dozois, Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling prepare their annual "Best Of" collections, and much more.

Colonization: Second Contact Colonization: Second Contact by Harry Turtledove
reviewed by A.L. Sirois
This is a continuation of Turtledove's Worldwar series. If you like series books and want to stick around to see how it all comes out, then by all means settle back with a big cup of ginger tea and have a go.

Night Voices Night Voices and Careful What You Wish by June Hubbard
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Certainly, there are dangers in the big city -- gang violence, seemingly random murders, criminals everywhere making the bright lights dark and sinister. Everyone knows that, but, if you've spent some time in the small towns of the South, you know where the true terrors lurk.

Second Looks

Attis Attis by Tom Holland
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
The author has taken characters from Roman history and faithfully recreated a portion of their lives but in a Rome with cars, fax machines, labour unrest, and archaeological digs. This Rome and its people remind one of the sort of lost souls and urban neighbourhoods in recent movies such as Trainspotting and The Crying Game.

Series Review

The Orokon Victor The Orokon by Tom Arden
reviewed by Neil Walsh
To fully appreciate this series, one would probably have to be a fan of quest fantasy (Tolkien, Eddings, Brooks) as well as a fan of 18th and 19th century satires and adventure romance novels (Defoe, Richardson, Swift, Austen, the Brontës, Dickens). It's grim. It's witty. It's certainly not a light read. But it is vastly entertaining on several levels.

Riddle-Master: The Complete Trilogy Riddle-Master: The Complete Trilogy by Patricia A. McKillip
reviewed by Lela Olszewski
McKillip writes in a poetic style that makes her books a delight to read and re-read. And that's only one reason to pick up this reprint of her classic trilogy about a student of magic in a world where wizardry is a dying art.

First Novels

Secrets of the Ancient Goddess Secrets of the Ancient Goddess by Brenda Gates Smith
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
Dateline, Turkey, circa 5000 BCE. This books is steeped in gynocentric mythology and ritual. Like many of the current prehistoric novels, it is obviously targetted to a predominantly female readership. There is, however, sufficient adventure, powerful male characters, and graphic sex, to interest the typical male reader, too. It's a solid first novel.


New Arrivals April Games
compiled by John O'Neill
Popular novelist R.A. Salvatore returns to the well to spin a tale of the Icewind Dale, home of Drow ranger Drizzt Do'Urden; Marvel unveils a detailed Fantastic Four Roster Book for the Saga Game Rules; and White Wolf releases a softcover version of Trinity -- lots to grab your gaming attention in April.

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