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The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, January/February 2011
The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, May 2007
The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction
The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, founded in 1949, is the award-winning SF magazine which is the original publisher of SF classics like Stephen King's Dark Tower, Daniel Keyes's Flowers for Algernon and Walter M. Miller's A Canticle for Leibowitz. Each 160-page issue offers compelling short stories and novellas by writers such as Ray Bradbury, Ben Bova, Ursula K. Le Guin, Mike Resnick, Terry Bisson and many others, along with the science fiction field's most respected and outspoken opinions on books, films and science.

The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction Website

A review by Sandra Scholes

The stories here are as amazing and inspiring as ever, though there are other aspects of the magazine that can catch the eye.

Departments has "Books to Look For," by Charles de Lint which goes into fairy land as he discusses the finer points of Brian Froud's world of the creatures in his latest book he co-wrote with Alan Lee, which leads us to reviews of Among Others by Jo Walton and The Night Bookmobile by Audrey Niffenegger among the many other books he reviews.

"Musing on Books," by Michelle West has her talking about four brand new books including How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu and Cold Magic by Kate Elliott,.

"Plumage From Pegasus: Patton of the Arts," by Paul di Filippo starts on a humorous note with his popular column on his writings, and this time he mentions, at great length, his own route into publishing, and how difficult it was to get published at all. As the times have moved on, being in print wasn't enough anymore, we had to be on Kindle, iPad, and blogs, or Goodreads. In this digital age, people who might be so bold as to leave the books behind and give the public a taster of what they can do online, and, in the world of publishing, this is now an essential part of getting writers work out there. Samples of a writers work can be viewed on Google Books and He goes on to explain other areas of publishing. It makes for interesting reading.

"Films: Spare Parts with a Soul," by Kathi Maio mentions the latest movies that have a theme to them. This month's theme seems to be Frankenstein and the general harvesting of body parts for experimentation. She goes into detail of some of the movies that have caused viewers to think about the true nature of organ and body part harvesting itself. There are other articles in here, but to mention them would be foolish of me. Instead, letting the reader find out would be the best course of action. In the meantime, consider the review, and go out and get yourself a copy -- it's an effective and satisfying read.

This issue that covers two months starts with:
"Home Sweet Bi'Ome," by Pat MacEwan

MacEwan had a story published earlier in December 2001 time called "Knock, Knock," that had a great impact on its readers. Her story is about a character that has to live inside a building called a Biome which is there to protect the person who lives there from the allergies outside. Of course it's not exactly a great life when you are allergic to practically everything around you, so it is easy to get uptight when someone wants to come into your home. In this case, Fox comes to visit, and at once is treated like an unwanted guest. This is a bottle show of a story that is as enjoyable and thrilling a sci-fi interlude. Fox makes for a daring and imposing character throughout.

"The Bird Cage," by Kate Wilhelm

It opens with Grace Wooten who refuses to allow Edward Markham to use himself as a test subject in the study of Parkinson's disease. Grace believes the monkeys are enough for the time being, and her team are working round the clock trying to find the solutions to the mystery, but Markham isn't satisfied, and makes her use him, or he will cut the funding for her project. Others who work with Grace find Markham an impossible man to talk to, and won't have anything to do with him. Grace genuinely wants to help the man, but her friend, Dale Sumner thinks she should cut all ties with him, as he feels she doesn't need the hassle for what he pays her. Grace, though keeps on helping him, and, in her mind, as long as she is, she is part way to finding a cure for the condition. Readers will get to feel the turmoil and anguish Markham feels. He knows it is only a matter of time before he dies, and needs her to find a cure, and quickly. For Grace she is constantly under pressure to perform for him, and even though she does her best, she finds him stifling. The outcome of the story isn't what you would expect.

"Long Time," by Rick Norwood

This story takes the reader through the life of John Smith, or at least that is his name when it isn't spelled in Sumerian. He has had a very long life indeed, and as he relates the story, you get the impression he has known a lot of people, many of whom are influential. He has managed to live his life by avoiding and dodging trouble, he lets others handle that while he goes on and on. His life lengthens while someone else's is lessened by his actions.

"Paradise Last," by Bill Pronzini and Barry N. Malzberg

Is there love beyond the grave? Some like to think so, but in most people's minds it entails vampires -- in this story's case it involves zombies. Leonard and Ellen upn meeting each other, it's love at first sight ever after. The premise of the story is that World War Three has happened, and after the apocalypse, the remaining people on Earth become zombies, and are used by humans to perform the menial labour, yet the living are kept away from the living dead, who exist in Zombie Towns, and go to regeneration places every so often to recharge, ready for the next working day. This is a light-hearted and upbeat way of looking at what can happen after death, but it does have its consequences.

These class as four of my favourites from the magazine, but there are others the reader will enjoy just as much.

Copyright © 2011 Sandra Scholes

Sandra Scholes is still thinking what comical anecdotes to put on Twitter, and when she finally gets round to posting some up it will be far too late. Other than Twitter taking over her life, she has been up to more important things lately... Love Vampires, Love Romance Passion, Active Anime and Romance At Heart magazine.

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