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Jimgrim and the Devil at Ludd Jimgrim and the Devil at Ludd by Talbot Mundy
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
Combine the best adventure writer of the 20th century, a lavishly and beautifully illustrated edition of some rare tales of one of his greatest fictional heroes, and a thoroughly researched introduction by Brian Taves, currently writing a literary study on Mundy, and you have a book that no fan of adventure literature can be without. This collection contains the novellas "The 'Iblis' at Ludd" and "The Seventeen Thieves of El-Kalil" set in Palestine and first published in Adventure in January and February 1922.

Readers' Choice Best Books of 1999 SF Site: Readers' Choice Best Books of 1999
For the past month, we've been soliciting your votes for what you thought were the best books you read in 1999. We not only compiled an interesting list, we also read your insightful comments. Many people felt there was something of a dearth of good books in 1999, and yet most had no trouble naming 5 to 10 titles they enjoyed enough to recommend to others. (Some people even listed "runners up" after exhausting the 10 votes they could legally cast.)

Elizabeth Moon A Conversation With Elizabeth Moon
Part 1 of an interview with Jayme Lynn Blaschke
On writing SF vs. fantasy:
"It allows me to play with the science side of my mind. One of my degrees was a science degree in biology. I love science. I love biomedical science, I love astronomy, and you can't really do much with those in a fantasy setting. So in a science fiction setting, I can play with kinds of characters that are modern and more intellectual, perhaps."

Deep Into That Darkness Peering Deep Into That Darkness Peering by Tom Piccirilli
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Fishboy Lenny is back and he's brought a few of his mutant contemporaries along for your reading pleasure. In this collection crammed full of the damaged and the deformed, the author's oddities curiosities freaks stand out -- not for their abnormalities, but for the protective feelings they inspire.

The Radon File The Radon File by Denise Vitola
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
In their latest adventure, Marshals Ty Merrick and her charm-bedecked partner Andy LaRue are the buddy-cops who must stand against injustice in this world gone bad. In this world where superstition has largely replaced science, and Ty is continually bedeviled with annoying (and painful) bouts of lycanthropy, why should it matter if cops use supernatural as well as book methods to bring crooks to justice?

The Psycho Ward The Psycho Ward edited by Victor Heck
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
If you like your horror dark and disturbing, this is going to be a book after your own heart (and the inmates will be wanting a piece of it, too). These short stories and poems offer a taste of the best of the new blood infusing the genre. And it isn't called The Psycho Ward for nothing: in many of the selections it's difficult to be certain of what is reality and what is delusion...

Best of 1999 Cover SF Site: The Best Books of 1999
Just as our last SF Site: The Best Books of 1998 list did. this list had its share of surprises and treasures. As much effort as these kinds of Awards are to do right, the rewards for the diligent compiler are considerable. The writers, reviewers and editors of the SF Site present their pick for the Top Ten Books of the year. Everyone who contributed to this list -- no matter how widely read we thought we were -- walked away with a discovery or 2 (or 10) that made all the work worthwhile.

Twilight Tales: Strange Creatures Twilight Tales: Strange Creatures edited by Tina L. Jens
reviewed by Rodger Turner
This is the third chapbook in the Twilight Tales series. The stories in this anthology all revolve around some facet or foible and its effect on you or me. In return, we see how it can makes us stronger, or can kill us. These are horror stories, after all. And each of them leaves the reader a little more shaken.

New Arrivals Mid-January Books
compiled by Neil Walsh
New books from Kage Baker, Jack McDevitt, Diana Paxson, Neal Barrett, Allen Steele, as well as reprints from H.G. Wells, Ben Bova, Harry Harrison, Dennis Danvers, Frank Herbert, and Robert Silverberg -- these are only a few of the treats you're likely to find on the shelves of your local bookstore this month.

Legends Walking Legends Walking by Jane Lindskold
reviewed by Pat Caven
Sequel to Changer, this book cannot be read on it's own. It takes up where Changer left off -- give or take a few weeks. Eddie and Anson A. Kridd have taken off for Nigeria to broker a petroleum deal between the struggling country and Japan. Meanwhile back in the US, King Arthur is struggling to keep the lid on the theriomorphs who want to 'come out' to the world.

Icarus Descending and After Magic Icarus Descending and After Magic
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Icarus Descending contains some of the most impressive short fiction of the year. Plus, it is a tantalizing opening act to the two Savile novels that are coming out this year. In After Magic, you can forget the dark, bohemian settings and jump back to Victorian England, where a medium, a magician, and a somewhat holy man are about to bump in an amusing collision that gets a bit wilder with each paragraph.

New Magazines New Magazines
compiled by John O'Neill
The SF Site's FictionHome page brings you the latest news and reviews of genre magazines and other short fiction. We look at brand new issues of Talebones, Interzone, The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, and many more.

Mendoza in Hollywood Mendoza in Hollywood by Kage Baker
reviewed by David Soyka
More of a sequel to The Garden of Iden, it is again a 1st-person narrative by the cyborg Mendoza on her unlucky love-life with mortal men. After centuries of preserving botanical specimens in California mostly on her own, Mendoza is assigned to a stagecoach stop in an area that will eventually turn into the famous movie-making capital.

Cauldron of Iniquity Cauldron of Iniquity by Anne Lesley Groell
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Meet the Cloak and the Dagger: assassins and investigators of the highest order... with the least experience. Jenifleur and Thibault are the newest members of the Assassins Guild. Don't let the fact that they survived their first two assignments fool you; they barely made it out with their lives. Any assignment could be the one that sees the end of the pair's adventures and their young lives.

The Quiet Invasion The Quiet Invasion by Sarah Zettel
a novel excerpt
    Everyone wants something from Venus.
    Dr. Helen Failia wants her orbital research city, Venera, to become a permanent Venusian colony. Dr. Grace Meyer wants to vindicate her theory of alien life. Techno-artist Dr. Veronica Hatch wants an inspiration. The U.N. wants to keep space colonies under its control, while covert rebels on Venera want to liberate the Moon and Mars from the U.N.
    All any of them need is a miracle, which is unlikely on an uninhabitable world of lethal heat, deadly pressure, and poison winds. But that's exactly what Venus yields, when a robot probe discovers on its surface a ruined building that promises proof of ancient extraterrestrial life.
    Then the humans are contacted by other, quite living, aliens.

Sarah Zettel A Conversation With Sarah Zettel
On Venus as a setting:
"Now, Venus is an extremely hostile environment, and as such presents a lot of challenges for a science fiction author who wants to create life there. However, as I began to research it more thoroughly, I found myself intrigued by the possibilities the world offers."

Perpetuity Blues and Other Stories Perpetuity Blues and Other Stories by Neal Barrett, Jr.
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
This collection is full of stories the best of which feature a familiar landscape full of diners, Wal-Marts, semis, and the quirky, usually good, sometimes malevolent people who inhabit them. It's also a world full of humour, poetry, dirt, magic, hope, despair, and the occasional alien.

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick offers us tips on what's worth watching during February of the 4 episodes from The X-Files and Star Trek: Voyager (it looks like a toss-up). For those William Gibson fans out there, look for his second The X-Files script at month's end. Gee, is it sweeps week?

New Arrivals Forthcoming Books
compiled by Neil Walsh
Over the next couple of months we'll be seeing continuations of series by such authors as Guy Gavriel Kay, Harry Turtledove, William Shatner, and Mary Gentle, as well as new works by the likes of Gregory Benford, Kathleen Ann Goonan and Terry Pratchett. Also coming is a previously unpublished novel by Keith Roberts, only to appear in serial in a new SF magazine.

Second Looks

The Drawing of the Dark The Drawing of the Dark by Tim Powers
reviewed by Neil Walsh
This occult adventure novel is about how beer saved Western Europe from the juggernaut that was the Turkish Ottoman Empire. The cast of characters includes the wounded and probably dying Fisher King, immortal Merlin, reincarnated Arthur, the ghost of Finn MacCool, an ancient ship full of only slightly less ancient Vikings, companies of Swiss mercenaries, legions of Turkish soldiers, spies, wizards, serving wenches, demons and a whole lot more.

The Drowned World The Drowned World by J.G. Ballard
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
This is a fascinating read, for it prefigures many of the themes that pervade the author's subsequent books: planetary/ecological disaster, entropy, the devolution of human nature, a preoccupation with the roots of violence. For those unfamiliar with Ballard, it's a good introduction -- more accessible and less transgressive than some of his later work, yet full of the arresting surrealism and hallucinatory brilliance of language that are hallmarks of his writing.

Poems from The Hobbit Poems from The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
reviewed by Trent Walters
It is what it says. It prints up the poems from The Hobbit for a book of its own, alongside Tolkien's colour illustrations. The poems are probably more at home in their original context but do spark some of the energy, separated from the native text. But if you prefer Lewis Carroll's "Jabberwocky" to William Carlos William's "The Red Wheelbarrow," this may be the book for you.

First Novels

Frontier Earth Frontier Earth by Bruce Boxleitner
reviewed by Don Bassingthwaite
Caught up in historical events of the American Old West and pursued by vicious alien hunters, a mysterious amnesiac named Macklin slowly comes to realize that he's from another planet. As soon as a stagecoach headed for Tombstone and counting Doc Halliday among its passengers makes an appearance, you know the OK Corral can't be far away.

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