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Close To My Heart: Genesis Close To My Heart: Genesis by W.A. Harbinson
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
At its heart is the question of who builds flying saucers and where they come from. The characters and plot, while hugely entertaining and well written, are subservient to this central enigma. The author's approach was to tell the story from three sides, with the viewpoint shifting between Epstein and Stanford, an old scientist and his young sidekick who are eager to solve the mystery, Richard Watson, a student who is abducted and subject mind control experimentation, and Aldridge, an American traitor whose icy genius almost won WW II for Nazi Germany.

Alosha Alosha by Christopher Pike
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
With her mother dead and her father, a long-distance hauler, gone for days at a time, thirteen-year-old Alison Warner has learned to be self-sufficient. And it's not like the isolated city of Breakwater is rife with danger -- until Ali goes hiking up one of the local mountains and finds herself being stalked by something big and hairy. Something that tries to kill her, leaving her trapped under a rock slide. She manages to dig herself out, just barely, and limps home to safety, but that night she has a strange dream about a threatening darkness called Shaktra and awakens with the certainty that it's something important. Something familiar.

Banewreaker Banewreaker by Jacqueline Carey
reviewed by David Soyka
The gods in the form of the Seven Shapers are still amidst us, but the siblings are quarreling. Satoris, the youngest god, gets cast out by eldest brother Haomane for getting too chummy with Men, and in the process suffers a deep wound that does not heal. A prophecy predicts the resulting imbalance, caused by this banishment, between both the gods and the races of creation will be healed and harmony restored with the destruction of Satoris.

The 3rd Alternative #40 / Interzone #196 The 3rd Alternative #40 / Interzone #196 The 3rd Alternative #40 and Interzone #196
reviewed by Matthew Cheney
With this issue, The 3rd Alternative celebrates ten years of publication. It is an auspicious anniversary, because the magazine has survived longer than might have been expected for a periodical publishing stories that don't always fit into neat genre categories, stories that struggle to mix the fantastic and mundane in new and profound ways. Because it is one of only a few places where such stories can really be at home, The 3rd Alternative is a truly necessary magazine.

Sidecar Preservation Society Sidecar Preservation Society
compiled by Rodger Turner
Many rumours surround the Sidecar Preservation Society. Those contacted for confirmation get anxious and suggest it is better not to dig too deeply. They will confirm that the cocktail can be potent when consumed in quantity. Their choice of material for publication can be whimsical. And they insist that all their chapbooks are developed and published through their minions. What caused these otherewise upright citizens to be placed into minionhood is nobody else's business.

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
a movie review by Rick Norwood
It is not as bad as you feared nor as good as you hoped, very different from any other version, but with a lot of the same lines. The movie version essentially adapts the first book with the cards shuffled, a few cards borrowed from other decks, and quite a few wild cards.

Titan: God-Machine Titan: God-Machine by Dan Abnett
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
This is a series omnibus, book-sized graphic novel. Reproduced in black and white for half the book, the artwork changes to greyscale for the second half. The subject is the adventures of the Warlord Titan Imperius Dictatio and its crew. Titans are the ultimate in 41st Millennium war machines, standing over 100ft tall and armed with volcano cannons, turbo lasers and gatling blasters. They have but one purpose; to kill anything that potentially threatens the God-Emperor of mankind.

Star Wars: Jedi Trial Star Wars: Jedi Trial by David Sherman and Dan Cragg
reviewed by David Maddox
The time draws near, a Jedi Padawan's training is almost complete and he nears full Knighthood. But there is something more growing within him, something dark and dangerous. Will this mission prove his courage and valor, or lead him down a darker path?

A Stroke of Midnight A Stroke of Midnight by Laurell K. Hamilton
reviewed by Alisa McCune
Continuing on where Seduced by Moonlight left off, Merry is the subject of a press conference. During it, a double homicide occurs -- a lesser Fae and a human reporter. Merry insists that a human investigation be done, and manipulates Queen Andais to this end. The importance of this investigation is never completely clear, other then as a way for Merry to avenge her father's murder.

2004 Nebula Awards 2004 Nebula Awards
Active members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America vote for the Nebula Awards. The awards are given each year for the best novel, novella, novelette, and short story eligible for that year's award. The script category was added in recent years. Each year, an anthology, including the winning pieces of short fiction and several runners-up, is also published.

Publishing Doctor Who Books Sidestepping Dimensions: an interview on Publishing Doctor Who Books
conducted by Sandy Auden
"Books that are entertaining, with something to say. We want to remain open to different approaches, and don't feel constrained by having to follow series continuity if we are presented with an idea which works well outside it. Ultimately it's our intention to present good fiction and that is uppermost in our minds at all times."

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
a movie review by Alec Worley
Prefaced by a cheerfully ominous musical number performed by a troupe of thankful dolphins, the movie begins familiarly enough. The Office's long-suffering Martin Freeman plays pyjama-wearing Earthman Arthur Dent, whose resentment at having his house bulldozed by the local counsel pales in comparison to the imminent demolition of Earth by the Vogons, a slobbering race of alien bureaucrats.

Terry Brooks Druidic Intrigue: an interview with Terry Brooks
conducted by Sandy Auden
"I think most authors are fairly devious anyway. We're manipulating our characters, manipulating our stories, creating things out of thin air, and playing god in a lot of different ways on a very small scale. It's already a part of the craft and it occasionally spills over into the plotting of things too."

Sequential Art Sequential Art
a column by Matthew Peckham
Revenge of the Sith is a poorly told tale of power corrupting the insecure and narcissistic, i.e. insert a coin into any number of Eastern philosophies and out pops an outline to match Lucas's juvenile distillations... if my inner-apologist was still hoping that George might at least go one for three, this final story has me washing my hands of any further exculpation.

The Silences of Home The Silences of Home by Caitlin Sweet
reviewed by Donna McMahon
Here, we meet the real Queen Galha. Far from ruling "with wisdom and kindness" as billed in her legend, Galha is a ruthless power broker who rigidly controls her people and everything they write about her. The setting of the book is the same medieval landscape as in A Telling of Stars (though many centuries earlier) but the narrative structure of this novel is far more complex, involving a large cast of viewpoint characters.

Dreams Made Flesh Dreams Made Flesh by Anne Bishop
reviewed by Alisa McCune
This is a wonderful addition to the Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop. The four stories contained in the collection are "Weaver of Dreams," "the Prince of Ebon Rih," "Zuulaman," and "Kaeleer's Heart."

New Arrivals New Arrivals
compiled by Neil Walsh
Recent arrivals in the SF Site office include new novels from Steph Swainston, Karin Lowachee, Karl Schroeder, Dan Abnett, and forthcoming collections from Paul Di Filippo, Maureen F. McHugh, Kelly Link, plus many more fine books.

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick has TV reviews of the Star Trek Enterprise episode titled "In a Mirror, Darkly" and the Smallville episode titled "Blank." He also lists what to watch on TV in May.

First Novels

Song of Kali Song of Kali by Dan Simmons
reviewed by John Berlyne
Robert Luczak is something of an innocent idealist. A poet and journalist, he is commissioned to write an article on M. Das, a famous Indian poet who disappeared some years ago and is now rumoured to have resurfaced (or perhaps have been resurrected) in Calcutta. More than this, Das has apparently written a new epic work and Luczak is to negotiate for the rights to publish this in America. It all sounds fairly straightforward.

The Foresight War The Foresight War by Anthony G. Williams
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
Using his vast knowledge of the events and weaponry used during WWII, the author projects an alternate stream of events, where the flow of history is changed by two men. They are Don Erlang and Professor Konrad Herrman, who are both accidental time travellers from 2004, that wake up one morning to find themselves in 1934. Herrman in Germany and Erlang in England. Both men are military historians, who adapt quickly to their new circumstances, and independently set out to change history as they knew it.

Second Looks

Natural History Natural History by Justina Robson
reviewed by Peter D. Tillman
The Forged, vat-born cyborg post-humans who do most of the heavy lifting in the 26th century, are getting tired of kowtowing to the Old Monkeys, the Unevolved guys who created them: us. As the book opens, Voyager Lonestar Isol has just made a disastrous First Contact with a mysterious alien artifact on her way to explore Barnard's Star.

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