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Close To My Heart: Robert Silverberg's Worlds of Wonder Close To My Heart: Robert Silverberg's Worlds of Wonder edited by Robert Silverberg
a review by Matthew Cheney
What made this book different, and made it the first anthology Matthew would read cover-to-cover, was the power of Silverberg's voice, the authority with which he expressed and justified his opinions, and the excellence of his selection. Thirteen stories are each followed by an essay in which the Silverberg explains why the story is a model of how to write science fiction.

The Well Of Stars The Well Of Stars by Robert Reed
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
The novel continues the story of the Great Ship, first introduced in Marrow and Mere. The Great Ship is a fabulous creation, a spaceship so large that there is a planet hidden at its center. No one knows who built it. It was found and boarded by human beings, who, along with a host of other species, decided to take the ship on a ride right out of the Milky Way into an unknown part of space, the Inkwell Nebula.

The House of Storms The House of Storms by Ian R. MacLeod
reviewed by David Soyka
The discovery of the alchemical substance aether has ushered in an alternate Industrial Revolution based on magic rather than steam power; the "Age" that follows the events of The Light Ages, the author's previous novel, is a sort of late Victorian period in which Victrola phonographs exist not at all incongruously side-by-side with telephone systems capable of video transmission.

Caitlin Sweet A Conversation With Caitlin Sweet
An interview with Donna McMahon
On her influences:
"Lloyd Alexander and Ursula K. Le Guin and Alan Garner really defined my sense of what fantasy can do. It can be profound and moral -- without moralizing -- and full of wonder."

The Engine of Recall The Engine of Recall by Karl Schroeder
reviewed by Rich Horton
Canada has been the source of a great deal of intriguing SF over the past decade or so, much of it at least moderately "hard SF." Hugo and Nebula winner Robert J. Sawyer, Robert Charles Wilson, James Alan Gardner, Alison Sinclair, Julie E. Czerneda, Sean Stewart, and Cory Doctorow. One of the most rigorously "hard SF" writers to come out of this "Canadian Renaissance" is Karl Schroeder, author of the impressive novels Ventus and Permanence.

Revenge of the Sith Revenge of the Sith
a movie review by Rick Norwood
The last of the Star Wars movies is, sadly, also the least. It is certainly one of the most spectacular films ever made. But while it is often beautiful, it is never joyous; often exciting but never thrilling.

World Fantasy Awards World Fantasy Awards
compiled by Rodger Turner
The awards are presented at the banquet of the World Fantasy Convention held each year in late October -- early November. Two of the nominees on the final ballot are determined by readers while the remainder come from the ballots put together by a panel of judges who change annually. The judges select the recipients in a second round of voting. The awards are based on work done during the previous calendar year.

A Caress of Twilight A Caress of Twilight by Laurel K. Hamilton
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
All of the main players from the first novel are back, with the exception of prince Cel, who is away being tortured for months on end as punishment for earlier indiscretions. Meredith, is now constantly accompanied by her band of immortal Sidhe warriors, all of whom she is required to take as lovers. Merry's lust filled nights have the aim of getting her pregnant, before the evil Cel is set free to either assassinate her, or produce a child of his own.

David A Hardy and Sir Patrick Moore Brushing the Imagination: an interview with David A Hardy and Sir Patrick Moore
conducted by Sandy Auden
"I was equally into science and art, and about equally good at both. I must admit that it was often the more spectacular aspects of chemistry that attracted me: liquids that changed colour, crystals, explosions, sulphurous smells, clouds of smoke, brilliant flames. I went on to make my own fireworks and rockets, many of them good ones! I often think I could have been a pyro-technician."

The Rose of the World The Rose of the World by Jude Fisher
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
On the world of Elda, the tumultuous events initiated by one fateful Allfair have triggered crisis, tragedy, and transformation. In the northern Eyran Isles, Katla Aranson, gifted metalsmith and incorrigible hoyden, has been abducted by marauders, along with all the women of Rockfall. Saro Vingo, who shares neither the zealotry nor the xenophobia common among his fellow Istrians, has come into possession of a deadly deathstone; in an effort to keep it out of the hands of religious fanatics, he has fled in company with the sorcerer Virelai.

Approaching Omega Approaching Omega by Eric Brown
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
Four humans are the maintenance crew on an outbound human ark escaping an Earth rapidly succumbing to anthropogenic destruction of the environment and of other humans. Despite warnings all seems good-to-go, but upon their first awakening from suspended animation, they find the ship heavily damaged, its central AI systems offline, some of the colonist-bearing pods destroyed, others hanging by a thread.

Stephen Baxter A Man in Shorts: an interview with Stephen Baxter
conducted by Sandy Auden
"If you're aspiring to write, a short story of twenty pages is a lot easier to visualise than a novel of five hundred pages, and a lot easier to study. But paradoxically it's just as hard in a different way. For me, it was a relatively low cost way in, and a way to learn the basics of fiction writing."

Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
a movie review by David Newbert
We were all looking forward to this, weren't we? Star Wars is a de facto cultural phenomenon now, so how could it be otherwise? Everyone, from impassioned fans who camped out for weeks in front of the wrong theater, to sneering detractors who saw the last two films as the backsliding of the franchise, have been waiting to see what George Lucas had up his sleeve for this final go-round.

Airborn Airborn by Kenneth Oppel
reviewed by Rodger Turner
In an alternate Victorian world, Matt Cruse serves as a cabin boy on the luxury airship Aurora. He is on watch when a tattered hot air balloon crosses the ship's path. Matt succeeds in saving its severely injured passenger through nimble acrobatics but the balloonist dies soon thereafter. In the adventurer's notebook are a number of drawings of bizarre winged creatures, half bat, half panther. Do such creatures exist or are they the fevered imaginings of a dying scientist?

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick has comments on the season finale of Smallville, the comic strip, Prince Valiant, the movie, Madagascar and the DVD, Have Gun -- Will Travel, Season Two. He also lists what to watch on TV in June.

First Novels

Here, There and Everywhere Here, There and Everywhere by Chris Roberson
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Roxanne Bonaventura discovers the Sofia, a mysterious metallic armband that allows her to travel through time and, eventually, through alternate realities. Roxanne's use of the Sofia begins small as she tries to gain time by living in different periods and then returning only a few moments after she left. When her father begins to suffer from cancer, she attempts to use the Sofia to ease his suffering, if not cure the cancer entirely.


The Dharma of Star Wars The Dharma of Star Wars by Matthew Bortolin
reviewed by Chris Przybyszewski
Book publishers everywhere are scrambling to take advantage of the media swirls that surround Revenge of the Sith. Many understand that a timely publication will equal greater sales than otherwise possible. This book falls directly in this mold. While the motives of the author and publisher are not necessarily monetary rather than idealistic, the product is a thinly disguised attempt to associate a popular form of entertainment with a popular form of spiritual enlightenment.

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