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Amazing Stories

Hardboiled Cthulhu Hardboiled Cthulhu edited by James Ambuhel
reviewed by Mario Guslandi
Lovecraftian mythos as the object and the target of harboiled investigations, or, if you want, Howard P. Lovecraft teaming with Raymond Chandler. Indeed an intriguing, original idea which has produced twenty-one new stories by a group of writers sharing an established enthusiasm for the universe and the disreputable inhuman entities created by the master from Providence.

Analog Science Fiction & Fact

Fast Forward 2 Fast Forward 2 edited by Lou Anders
reviewed by Derek Johnson
The introduction starts out strong citing what he sees as science fiction's four purposes: its predictive capability, its preventative possibility, its ability to inspire the future, and being "the literature of the open mind," which "acknowledges change and encourages thinking outside the box." And then presents fourteen tales which promise to do just that.

Fast Forward 1 Fast Forward 1 edited by Lou Anders
reviewed by Jakob Schmidt
The anthology opens with one of the outstanding contributions: a subtle, low-key near-future story by Robert Charles Wilson, about art and class differences in a society where advanced technology provides for a functioning, world-wide welfare system. A good part of the author's strength lies in his characters, and "YFL-500" reads almost like a fine piece of realist short fiction from the future in which it is set.

Projections: Science Fiction in Literature and Film Projections: Science Fiction in Literature and Film edited by Lou Anders
reviewed by Matthew Cheney
Like Venn diagrams passing in the night, the audiences for science fiction movies and books may overlap at certain points. But there is no law saying that a person who went to see I, Robot three times in the theatre also has a subscription to Asimov's magazine. The pleasures the two media offer are different.

Turn of the Century Turn of the Century by Kurt Andersen
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
One of the more radical conjectures of this brilliantly funny, semi-speculative millennial novel is that nothing terrible happens on January 1, 2000. Sure, there are plenty of breakdowns and disasters in the novel -- they're just of a more universal nature. It's failures of communication the author is concerned with, and the havoc that results from the age-old human tendency to confuse fact and fiction.

The Magician and the Fool The Magician and the Fool by Barth Anderson
reviewed by Rich Horton
Jeremiah Rosemont is a former academic, apparently an expert on the history of the Tarot, who has abandoned his former life and is wandering through Nicaragua when he gets a curious summons to Rome where he finds strange things happening. He becomes embroiled in a struggle over an ancient Tarot deck that might give great power to some very ancient beings. At the same time, a homeless man, called simply Boy King, who makes his living by dumpster diving and occasional Tarot readings in the streets of Minnesota, becomes aware that someone is after him.

The Patron Saint of Plagues The Patron Saint of Plagues by Barth Anderson
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
Set 55 years from today, it's part medical thriller, part speculative fiction, and part apocalyptic prophecy. The plot concerns a new virus, agricultural ruin and invasive biotech, complicated by radically altered religious and political divisions. The latter occur between a buoyant Mexico and a US where the economy has all but collapsed. The reason for this fall has to do with the farming methods used by American producers, which have left their crops vulnerable. When blight strikes, American agriculture is dealt a near fatal blow, reducing the nation to almost third-world standards.

A Step Beyond A Step Beyond by C.K. Anderson
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
When is a science fiction novel not really a science fiction novel? How about when it's set so close to our own time and so much within our present knowledge that it reads like a story which, with very few changes, could be taking place today. This novel is such a book. A story about the first manned expedition to Mars, it is so rigourous in its depiction of the reality of our current spaceflight capabilities that it becomes both more and less than a typical science fiction novel.

Bitter Angels Bitter Angels by C.L. Anderson
reviewed by Michael M Jones
Over three decades ago, Terese Drajeske retired from the Guardians, and from the business of preventing war from threatening Earth and its far-flung colonies. The last thing she ever expected or wanted was to be recalled to active duty, but the brutal murder of her old friend and mentor is something even she can't ignore. Reluctantly, she accepts her assignment: travel to the corrupt and dangerous Erasmus System, a set of worlds where slavery, smuggling, abuse of power and treachery run rampant, and find out if a true threat to humanity's peace exists.

Tales Before Narnia Tales Before Narnia edited by Douglas A. Anderson
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
This anthology reprints a score of works which were putative direct or indirect influences on the writings of C.S. Lewis, although the relevance of the material extends beyond merely the Chronicles of Narnia to such of Lewis' works as The Screwtape Letters and the Space Trilogy. Lewis was a voracious and lifelong reader, so lots of potential material exists for such an anthology, and the editor has distilled some of the best of these here.

Tales Before Tolkien Tales Before Tolkien edited by Douglas A. Anderson
reviewed by Hank Luttrell
There is no reason to think Tolkien ever read some of these stories. All of these stories were written before the publication of The Hobbit in 1937, by writers at least somewhat older than Tolkien. Some of these stories are similar to Tolkien's work, even where he may not have been familiar with them; some were almost certainly unknown to Tolkien, and some were clearly influences. The editor intends the anthology to depict the fantasy landscape before it began to be reshaped by Tolkien's work.

Albert of Adelaide Albert of Adelaide by Howard L Anderson
reviewed by Seamus Sweeney
The book tells the story of the eponymous platypus, an escapee from Adelaide Zoo, and his adventures in Old Australia, which he had previously idealised as a human-free paradise. Albert is haunted and infuriated by memories of his captivity, and the perpetual eyes watching his every movement. Further back, his capture from a simple life along the Murray River was even more traumatic. The story begins with Albert, days march north from Adelaide, delirious and seeming ready to die.

Going Through the Gate Going Through the Gate by Janet S. Anderson
reviewed by Jennifer & Chris Goheen
Jennifer found it suspenseful and strange in a realistic way. Chris, Jennifer's dad, thought it should go over well with younger readers who enjoy fantasy and suspense.

Kevin J. Anderson

L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future: The First 25 Years L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future: The First 25 Years edited by Kevin J. Anderson
reviewed by Sandra Scholes
For every budding writer there is a period in their lives when they think they will never manage to get published, that their name will simply never be seen on the cover of a bestseller. Back in 1983, there were plenty out there who had that viewpoint, but if science fiction and fantasy is what they are aiming for, then back in 1984, there was some good news, as a new contest had been organized especially for aspiring authors; The L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Contest.

Lethal Exposure Lethal Exposure by Kevin J. Anderson and Doug Beason
reviewed by Kim Fawcett
This novel is more techno-thriller than SF, but if you've always wondered what a nuclear particle accelerator was like on the inside, or if you love FBI crime stories, this book might be for you.

Whales on Stilts! Whales on Stilts! by M.T. Anderson
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
Pulp science fiction may be an acquired taste, but what better time to acquire it than when you're young? And if you're older, all the better, for you'll have the proper background to truly appreciate the fine, full bouquet of a good, meaty pulp sf story -- as well as the postmodern layers of self-deprecating humor and deft message of empowerment knitted into this book.

The High Crusade The High Crusade by Poul Anderson
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
The year is 1345, and Sir Roger Baron de Tourneville is mustering troops ready to join King Edward III in his struggle against France. The knight's day is interrupted by a two-thousand foot long flying machine, containing an advance force of Wersgorix. These are aliens intent on world conquest, who see the denizens of Earth as mere primitives. Unfortunately for them, Sir Roger and company are combat hardened, and don't take kindly to being shot at.

The Boat of a Million Years The Boat of a Million Years by Poul Anderson
an audiobook review by Dale Darlage
The book follows a group of immortal people through their lives. These are regular people in every respect except that they never age. They were not all born at the same time -- some were born earlier (as early as 5,000 years ago), and some arrived later, but there seems to be no pattern that explains their immortality. Their ancestors are not necessarily long-lived and their descendents do not inherit their immortality. They recover quickly from injury but they can be killed by accidents, disease and battle.

For Love and Glory For Love and Glory by Poul Anderson
reviewed by Rich Horton
The story opens with Lissa Windholm and an alien partner coming across a mysterious artifact, evidently left by the Forerunners, on the planet Jonna. But they are not the first to discover this artifact -- a man named Torben Hebo, one of the oldest humans still alive, and his alien partner have got there first. And their interest is profit, as opposed to Lissa's purely scientific motivation. Torben also rather crudely expresses an interest of a different sort in Lissa herself. But disaster strikes.

The Broken Sword The Broken Sword by Poul Anderson
reviewed by William Thompson
Taking place within a fictional England during the period of Viking incursions and the Danelaw, the realm of faerie still exists dimensionally side-by-side with mankind, at times heard or glimpsed in storm or twilight, but ever driven to the margins of human habitation by the encroachment of the White Christ and his proselyting priesthood. Orm the Strong has carved out a home for himself along the northern Saxon shores, killing its original residents and through coercion, taking an English wife. But his actions have led to a curse being placed upon him, which will have dire consequences for the future.

Starfarers Starfarers by Poul Anderson
reviewed by Robert Francis
This novel is an exciting meld of hard science fiction and social speculation. It is a novel of first contact, not only between humans and aliens, but also between humans and their future.

Into the Storm Into the Storm by Taylor Anderson
an audiook review by Sarah Trowbridge
The year is 1942. Three months have passed since the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, and things are not going well for the Allies in the Pacific. Lieutenant Commander Matthew Reddy has recently assumed command of the destroyer USS Walker, a venerable relic of World War I. With Japanese vessels in hot pursuit, Matt Reddy steers his ship into a squall, hoping to throw the enemy off the trail. When they come out on the other side, the destroyermen soon realize that they have traveled much farther than they expected.

The Wizard Knight Companion The Wizard Knight Companion by Michael Andre-Driussi
reviewed by Steven H Silver
The book is primarily a companion to the two books which make up Gene Wolfe's The Wizard Knight series. Andre-Driussi's entries for his lexicon are all taken from the source work, whether the names of individuals, such as Able, Wolfe's narrator for the cycle, or places, like Yens. Each entry not only explains the role the entry plays in Wolfe's work, but also its etymology, when appropriate, and notes where in the series the reference appears.

Magic Bites Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews
an audiobook review by Jennifer McCann
In an alternate Atlanta, Kate Daniels is on a mission. Kate, a magically adept mercenary, is hunting for the person or persons who brutally murdered her guardian, Greg. As an investigator for the Guild, an organization meant to police the supernatural beings of Atlanta, he was working a case involving missing shape shifters. Into the picture arrives the "Masters of the Dead," a group of necromancers that "drive" vampires much like puppets.

Singers of Strange Songs: A Celebration of Brian Lumley Singers of Strange Songs: A Celebration of Brian Lumley edited by Scott David Aniolowski
reviewed by Neil Walsh
This anthology includes 11 new tales of terror, selected for their use of Brian Lumley's Cthulhu Mythos material and creations, as well as a couple of previously published stories from Lumley himself. If you plan to read this before bed, you might want to invest in a night-light.

God Drug God Drug by Stephen L. Antczak
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
A military-made drug, based on LSD but far more powerful, has led to the creation of a small group, fractured personalities that are aspects of the soldiers who took part in the experiment. Jovah was the only survivor, and he was rendered both insane and unable to exist in the real world. Senses all messed up, he was placed in a sensory deprivation tank, and forgotten. Now, the splinter personalities are on the loose in the real world, working toward the ultimate goal of recreating reality.

Daydreams Undertaken Daydreams Undertaken by Stephen L. Antczak
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
This collection of 15 tales was inspired or whose dénouement was worked out through the author's daydreaming. An introduction to each tale tells of just which aspect of the particular story required this semi-conscious consultation with the Muses. The lead story is a lovely tale, which on one level asks the question whether reality is an absolute or simply a human construct, and on another whether art can create an alternate reality.

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