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Dog Eat Dog Dog Eat Dog by Jerry Jay Carroll
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
It's a bizarre blending of themes and styles, combining over-the-top parody, thriller-like suspense, and some pretty trenchant observations about God, the universe, the nature of evil, and the psychology of dogs. It's a delicate balancing act that constantly runs the danger of descending into mere silliness.

Top Dog Top Dog by Jerry Jay Carroll
reviewed by David Soyka
This is a funny, entertaining jaunt that even manages to raise the Big Metaphysical Questions of the Meaning of Life and why Evil exists without falling into banalities. But on the other hand, don't expect any deeply satisfying answers...

Inhuman Beings Inhuman Beings by Jerry Jay Carroll
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
There is absolutely no reason why this dizzy blend of pulp SF and hardboiled mystery should work, but it does -- wonderfully. The narrative blazes, the reader doesn't have time to question what's happening. Carroll invests even his most impossible situations with a crazily consistent logic. The book's punch is aided by a tight, lean prose style.

Jonathan Carroll

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
an audiobook review by Sarah Trowbridge
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland makes for great listening, and a reader's understanding of Lewis Carroll's language and humor can be greatly enhanced by hearing it interpreted by a talented performer. In this new audiobook edition, the wonderfully talented Jim Dale renders a memorable performance that gloriously delivers Alice to a new generation of reader-listeners.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson
reviewed by Katherine Petersen
Most characters that populate young adult fantasy novels are beautiful, strong, secure and/or smart. Princess Lucero-Elisa possesses none of these traits or at least doesn't think she does. Elisa is fat, insecure and pales in comparison to her older sister when it comes to playing political games and socializing with strangers. So, she's terrified when she is to secretly marry Alejandro, the leader of a neighboring kingdom in the midst of its turmoil.

Eternity's End Eternity's End by Jeffrey A. Carver
reviewed by Hank Luttrell
This novel is set in the same universe as the epic Star Rigger series, although it is not closely related to the other books. Readers may wonder if they should read them in the order published or in the order of the story chronology. This really doesn't make any difference; the important thing is just to read these books. They're great.

Dreaming Pigs Dreaming Pigs by Lynne Carver
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
All of this concern over xenotransplantation would seem to make pigs cloned for xenobiotics a hot topic. What do such creatures have to do with this book? In the end, very little. A cloned pig's heart is used in a transplant operation, but the young girl recipient does not survive, suffering heart failure -- and thus largely eliminating the consequences of any pathogen transfer, and any controversy that might drive the the story's plot.

The Winter Queen The Winter Queen by Devin Cary
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
With his dying breath, King Ethelred of Albor designates his young wife Elissa as regent for his son, Prince Edgar. In a land where women are regarded as inferior creatures and a long-standing law prohibits a woman from ever ascending to the throne, this is a shocking choice. The lords of the Privy Council, outraged, begin immediately to plot how to prevent the king's decree from coming to pass.

The Invention of Morel The Invention of Morel by Adolfo Bioy Casares
reviewed by Seamus Sweeney
The story is of an unnamed narrator, a fugitive from Venezuela after some unnamed crime, who comes to an island in what seems to be the Indian Ocean. As the narrator's informant, an Italian rugseller in Calcutta, puts it "Chinese pirates do not go there, and the white ship of the Rockefeller Institute never calls at the island, because it is known to be the focal point of a mysterious disease, a fatal disease that attacks the outside of the body and then works inward."

Brotherly Love Brotherly Love by David Case
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
This collection will stay with you not so much for the frights or laughs it may generate, but for the questions it raises about good and evil, intolerance, and the nature of humanity. It's no dry philosophical treatise, but a set of stories with lots of action, interesting characters, and plenty of murder and mayhem in, as Ramsey Campbell puts it, "impeccable taste."

The Meq The Meq by Steve Cash
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
It's the 4th of May, 1881 -- Zianno Zezen's 12th birthday. He and his parents are on a train, traveling to Colorado. To while away the time, Zianno's mother starts to tell a story. Zianno's 12th birthday is different, she says, just as he and she and his father are different -- not only because they're Basque, but because they're older than ordinary people. But before she can elaborate, the train derails on a washed-out track, and both Zianno's parents are killed.

Fire Fire by Kristin Cashore
reviewed by Dan Shade
In the Dells, where Fire lives, she is considered a monster. Not because she is graced to read and control minds but because of her vibrant flame red hair. Even without it, she would be considered an extremely beautiful woman. With it, all men desire her. The king makes a total fool out of himself over her, pawing and bowing and begging her to marry him or coming to her rooms at all hours of the night and day with new proposals of marriage and threats to kill himself if she does not. These are not idle threats.

Graceling Graceling by Kristin Cashore
reviewed by Dan Shade
In a land of seven kingdoms and seven thoroughly unpredictable kings, a Graceling is a child born with special powers. It may be in healing, science, spells, combat, etc. Gracelings cannot be recognized until about age three. At that time, their eyes will undergo a change resulting in eyes of two different colors. One eye may be blue and the other green such as Katsa's are. The color of the eyes does not indicate what skill the Graceling will show but it will begin to manifest itself shortly.

Graceling Graceling by Kristin Cashore
reviewed by Alma A. Hromic
This is a debut novel, and what a debut it has been so far. This has been one of those books that has been gathering buzz as it rolls along until it has reached the point that it somehow inevitably pops up in any discussion on the topic of YA literature. It managed to make it into New York Times Review of Books, and received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly, School Library Journal, Booklist, not to speak of the notoriously hard-to-please Kirkus Reviews; it won, was a finalist in, or was nominated for a slew of industry, critical, readers' and bloggers' "best of" lists and awards. But...

Graceling Graceling by Kristin Cashore
reviewed by Tammy Moore
In the Seven Kingdoms, the Graced are viewed with fear and suspicion. Marked out from their fellow citizens by their mismatched eyes they are gifted, or Graced, with supernatural skills. Some can read minds or predict the future, others are fighters that no Ungraced warrior could touch. Katsa is Graced with killing.

Without Absolution Without Absolution by Amy Sterling Casil
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
This author's first collection of stories and poems is the work of a good writer who is slowly but surely learning to be a good science fiction writer. As such, it is a solid example of what Greg believes to be a truism: that writing quality science fiction requires more skill on the part of the author than writing traditional mainstream fiction, not less.

Gurahl Gurahl by Jackie Cassada and Nicky Rea
gaming module review by Don Bassingthwaite
The Gurahl are the werebears of the World of Darkness. In the mythology of the Changing Breeds, they are Gaia's Healers, just as the Garou are Gaia's Warriors. This book looks at the Gurahls' sense of healing and peaceful tradition, which is not to say that it presents a rosy picture of werebears with tea-cosies. There is darkness and there is violence.

Elphame's Choice Elphame's Choice by P.C. Cast
reviewed by Alisa McCune
Elphame, the great-granddaughter of Rhiannon and the daughter of Etain, the current Goddess Incarnate is struggling to find her way. Born part-human and part-centaur, she is worshiped by the people of Partholon and she hates it. Elphame is a woman -- not a goddess. Epona, the Goddess, has never directly spoken to Elphame. As a matter of fact, Elphame has never experienced anything magical except her hybrid looks.

Emissaries From The Dead Emissaries From The Dead by Adam-Troy Castro
reviewed by Michael M Jones
Somewhere in deep interstellar space, the enigmatic faction of machine intelligences known as the AISource have constructed a monumentally huge habitat designated One One One, which they've filled with a bizarre, near-uninhabitable ecosystem and a collection of engineered species. Of chief interest among these species are the Brachiators, a sentient, violent race inhabiting the topmost portion of the habitat, dwelling among the Undergrowth.

The Burning Heart of Night The Burning Heart of Night by Ivan Cat
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Pilot Lindal Karr is one of the few humans able to withstand fugue, the immune system of the vast living entities called fugueships. Instead of falling into a coma-like sleep, as most humans do, Karr simply slows down. Passing a subjective day for every real-time year, he travels the universe in symbiosis with his ship, seeding human colonies among the stars. Sometimes, though, the seeded colonies don't thrive -- as on the ocean planet of New Ascension, where the small human community lives in constant peril. Initially judged a paradise, New Ascension hides a terrible secret...

Casting Shadows Casting Shadows by Jeanne Cavelos
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
As the book begins Galen, an apprentice techno-mage, and his mentor Elric are awaiting the gathering of the community of techno-mages for the Convocation. Should he successfully pass his initiation, Galen will be a full-fledged techno-mage when the celebrations conclude. It's enough to make a young student fraught with anxiety; Galen has no idea just how dangerous it will be. If he did, he might run in the opposite direction. But, the ceremony is about to be dwarfed by an infinitely greater threat: the Shadows are about to return.

The Science of Star Wars The Science of Star Wars by Jeanne Cavelos
reviewed by Jonathan Fesmire
The scientific aspects of Star Wars may be fantastic and far-fetched. Or so Jonathan thought before reading this book. When Star Wars: A New Hope came out in 1977, concepts like faster than light travel, alien life, and even planets around distant stars, seemed highly unlikely. Now it's 1999, and scientists have changed their minds. Science is finally catching up to George Lucas and Star Wars.

The Science of the X-Files The Science of the X-Files by Jeanne Cavelos
reviewed by Todd Richmond
Todd enjoys The X-Files as much as anyone. But as a scientist, he finds some of the science speculative and some, utter fiction. Unfortunately, the author's unwillingness to dismiss the fictitious pseudo-science results in a disorganized, meandering book that superficially treats certain subjects while overemphasizing others.

Paper Bodies Paper Bodies by Margaret Cavendish
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
While a few other editions of Cavendish's works have appeared in the last 10 years, this edition has done a good job of selecting and introducing a number of texts by her and placing them in the context of the social mores and science of her time. While her literary contributions as an early feminist, scientist and science commentator were substantial and are well represented here, it is the inclusion of her 1666 science fiction novel The Description of a New World, Called the Blazing-World that makes this book relevant.

Godzilla 2000 Godzilla 2000 by Marc Cerasini
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Lisa has seen the Godzilla movies but who could resist the chance to read an actual novel about giant monsters? She couldn't, but she wishes she had. You see, to read a young adult book, it would be extremely helpful to be... well... young. It hurts her to say it, but she was NEVER this young.

Manhood for Amateurs Manhood for Amateurs by Michael Chabon
reviewed by Paul Kincaid
Thre is an undercurrent of SF runninng through this new collection of essays. Very few of them directly address genre, though the collection opens with him trying and failing to launch a comics fan group when he was a child, but fantasy and science fiction provide images and analogies right the way through.

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon
reviewed by David Maddox
Right from the beginning it's clear that this book is something special. The magnificent paperback cover design by Henry Sene Yee resembling a well-worn, over-read pulp novel of the 40s helps to transport the reader back to a different era, a time when heroes were born. As the story opens, young Josef Kavalier, with the help of his magical mentor Bernard Kornblum, is escaping Nazi-occupied Europe while trying to conceal an ancient golem from inquisitive Gestapo.

McSweeney's Mammoth Treasury of Thrilling Tales McSweeney's Mammoth Treasury of Thrilling Tales edited by Michael Chabon
reviewed by Hank Luttrell
The introduction, which the editor calls a rant, suggests that the modern short story is dominated by the "...contemporary quotidian, plotless, moment-of-truth revelatory story." In fact, there are few popular or commercial venues for short stories, and many publications that do use short stories, such as little magazines, tend toward these everyday plotless narratives he describes. The editor is, of course, the successful author of the novel Kavalier & Clay, which clearly reflects his interest in American popular culture and commercial story telling, as his protagonists are the creators of a popular comic book during the formative years of comic book publishing.

Mark Chadbourn

Robota Robota by Doug Chiang & Orson Scott Card
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Many art books take an artist's vision and then have an author write text describing the individual paintings or the artist's work. Similarly, many stories are written and then illustrated by an artist with a sparse assemblage of paintings which may, or may not depict the characters and places the author's text describes. Here, the artist and the author avoid both of these pitfalls.

The Yellow Sign and Other Stories The Yellow Sign and Other Stories by Robert W. Chambers
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
The book that made Chambers and remains the apex of his work was The King in Yellow. While derived from some Ambrose Bierce tales, Chambers created, so to speak, the Carcosa mythos, its central figure a king in yellow tatters, the talisman of the Yellow Sign, and the mind-corrupting second act of the play "The King in Yellow." As much as Lovecraft expert S.T. Joshi states that H.P.L. developed his Cthulhu Mythos and associated paraphernalia independently, Chambers' creation differs little from it.

Chronicle Of The Seven Sorrows Chronicle Of The Seven Sorrows by Patrick Chamoiseau
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
In Martinique there was a time when its people still listened to the voices of ghosts, dorlis, zombis. The undead were as much a part of their lives as the buyers in the marketplace, and sometimes, the only verbal link to their past. Painful memories of slavery, brutality, and stolen moments of joy, remained only beneath grave soil. And, while not everyone stayed to hear the song of their history, there were some who were unable to tear themselves away.

Tempt the Stars Tempt the Stars by Karen Chance
reviewed by Katherine Petersen
As per usual, Cassie Palmer has a half-assed plan at best which starts with the idea of going back in time to ask her mother how to wrest John Pritkin from his demon father's clutches. Nothing goes as planned, and the book has the nonstop action that fans have come to expect and enjoy. Throw in some humor for balance and also give hints to the growth in Cassie and Pritkin's relationship and we're off. Mircea, on the other hand, hardly makes any appearances in this installment.

Curse the Dawn Curse the Dawn by Karen Chance
reviewed by Michael M Jones
Cassandra Palmer has accepted the mantle of Pythia, making her the world's most powerful psychic, able to see the future and travel through space and time. Unfortunately, there are those who would rather see the power go to someone more easy to manipulate, and so the mages of the Silver Circle are out to kill her. Worse still, the previous Pythia died before teaching Cassie the ins and outs of the job, leaving her to figure it out by trial and error.

Touch the Dark Touch the Dark by Karen Chance
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
Cassandra Palmer is a virginal young woman who talks to dead people, and following the murder of her parents, was brought up in a vampire mafia family. Then she ran away. Tony, the undead godfather of the bloodsucking mob, is looking for her, along with other interested parties. The only advantage Cassie has to begin with is her ability to interact with ghosts, and to some extent make use of their ectoplasmic powers.

Mothership Mothership by Tony Chandler
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
The end has come for the Earth and for all humanity. The T'kaan, a single-minded race that seeks only to wipe out other species wherever they find them, has come for the final battle. But not every human being is killed; an intelligent and unstoppable starship has become Mother to the last three orphan children of humanity. Now, the question is whether a sentient ship can truly perform all the duties of a mother to her charges.

Dossier Dossier by Stepan Chapman
reviewed by Rich Horton
The stories in this collection are all good reading. Many of them resemble fables, Native American legends, or fairy stories. (Indeed, one story is an over-the-top admixture of "Sleeping Beauty" and Gothic fiction.) The stories are often funny, and usually pointed. Sometimes there is a neat twist at the end, at other times the whole story is a wild ride through a bizarre imaginative landscape.

The Troika The Troika by Stepan Chapman
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
The author plays with words like trick cards. He surrounds each character with infinite layers of disguise and dares you to "find the lady." Getting too close to the truth? He simply sheds another onion skin and allows the story to twist away.

Dagon Dagon by Fred Chappell
reviewed by Richard A. Lupoff
A writer, Peter Leland, has settled in a Southern farm house along with his attractive wife, in order to concentrate his efforts on composing a book. At first this seemingly idyllic setting is ideal, but soon things start to sour. They go from bad to worse, and eventually -- please forgive the partial spoiler!

Spellwright Spellwright by Blake Charlton
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
When he first started to learn magic, there were those who believed Nicodemus Weal was destined to become a wizard of prophecy, the Halcyon, who would turn back evil and save the world from the apocalyptic Disjunction. Then his mentors realized he couldn't spell in the magical sense. Writing his own spells required intense concentration, even for the simplest magic. And any spell already written down could be turned to gibberish by Nicodemus' touch.

The Vampire Tapestry The Vampire Tapestry by Suzy McKee Charnas
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Sometimes a title is a perfect illustration of a book's contents. "Tapestry" so aptly describes the story in this horror novel that it is only three-quarters of the way through that the relevance becomes clear. The tale of Edward Weyland is a weaving of disparate strands that comes together to make a meaningful whole. The fleeting glimpse we catch of the vampire's life epitomizes what a tiny portion of the full composition we have been allowed to see.

The Kingdom of Kevin Malone The Kingdom of Kevin Malone by Suzy McKee Charnas
reviewed by Margo MacDonald
The story is fast-paced and seductive. The main characters are engaging and tough. Charnas uses familiar fantasy elements to her advantage in managing to make them seem familiar but not boring.

Snowfall Snowfall by J. Kathleen Cheney
reviewed by Trent Walters
Lourdes Medina has followed her fifteen-year-old mare from Texas to buy back the horse her brother Chuy sold in order to spite her after she spurned the man he chose for her to marry. At the auction, however, she falls for a well-dressed gentleman who is bidding against her and has a more slender, red-haired woman in a dark green walking suit hanging on his arm.

Snow Come to Hawk's Folly Snow Come to Hawk's Folly by J. Kathleen Cheney
reviewed by Trent Walters
In a sequel to Iron Shoes, the story picks up a few years later: Guiare and Imogen have married and have had a child. And her devious fairy father, Mr. Finnegan, has shown up on her doorstep, wanting to get to know his long-lost daughter. Finnegan promises not to harm any of her family -- a promise he cannot break. But Imogen is unsure if her father can still do damage, playing with the wording of the promise.

Iron Shoes Iron Shoes by J. Kathleen Cheney
reviewed by Trent Walters
A widowed woman of the early 1900s tries to restore the family racing horse ranch to its former glory. Her husband had made some poor choices, which his mother and wife are now paying for. Now they either have to start selling horses or pin their hopes to Blue Streak, the horse who stands the best chance of winning the ranch some money. Enter a horse she just bought, sight unseen. Paddy, the ranch's best trainer, tells Imogen it's sick and he doesn't know what to do. Imogen knows immediately. The horse is a fairy trapped in the horse form.

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