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Ports of Call Ports of Call by Jack Vance
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
Throughout human history there is a kind of story in which the hero or heroine voyages to far-away lands full of wonders and peopled only by the story-teller's imagination. Jack Vance is a master of this form and the pleasure of Ports of Call is how effortlessly he invents one exotic society after another.

Otherland Otherland by Tad Williams
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
While it would be easy to slap a "cyberpunk" label on this book, with its net-traveling and troubling images of the future, the worlds Williams has created are, to Victoria, much more subtle and nuanced (and plausible) than the standard cyberpunk dystopia.

Burnt Offerings Burnt Offerings by Laurell K. Hamilton
reviewed by Katharine Mills
Katharine feels this novel rises above your average pulpdom with lots of vivid description, plenty of fast and dry sardonic humour, and some really good character definition; even the monsters and various monster-bait bit parts manage to take on a life of their own.

The UFO Files The UFO Files edited by Martin H. Greenberg
reviewed by David A. Truesdale
Initially approaching The UFO Files with arched eyebrow and a healthy dose of jaded skepticism, David came away having enjoyed it. Make no mistake, however; no Pulitzer Prize winners here. Just well-worth-the-money plane or train ride or lounging on the patio on a summer afternoon fare, with a handful of solid stories and one true innovative gem.

Steeldriver Steeldriver by Don DeBrandt
reviewed by Jean-Louis Trudel
The author glories in assembling a gallery of vivid characters. He spices up the action with some fine instances of tall tales including his aliens' ability to incorporate bones and tools within their own bodies. The stories DeBrandt draws from that are worth the price of the book alone.

An Exaltation of Larks An Exaltation of Larks by Robert Reed
reviewed by S. Kay Elmore
The author has spun out a tale about the end of the world that may indeed be about the beginning of life. He uses the seeds of an ancient mythology and grows it into an enchanting story.

New Arrivals April New Arrivals
compiled by John O'Neill
It's a tough job, cataloging new arrivals. You crack the binding on new books, you bend over your cramped desk, hold the candle a little closer, and peer at the tiny writing on the copyright page. A few short entries with the stylus, warm your fingers by the chimney for a moment, and then it's on to the next book. Yes, pity us. We do it all so you don't have to.

The Demon King The Demon King by Chris Bunch
reviewed by Todd Richmond
The author knows how to write about war and battle, intrigue and betrayal. The senselessness and the horror force the reader to wonder how soldiers could ever go on. The novel also clearly shows how a sense of duty and honour can be carried too far, something seen in our own history.

Officer-Cadet Officer-Cadet by Rick Shelley
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Anyone familiar with police procedurals and their concentration on the process of investigating a crime will recognize this novel as, perhaps, a new branch of the genre: the military procedural.

The Dark Shore The Dark Shore by Adam Lee
reviewed by Robert Francis
Despite being the first volume of a series, The Dark Shore tells a straight-forward, self-contained story.  Anyone picking up this book will be treated to a well developed plot, with a definite close, set in a very interesting cosmology.

Foundation and Chaos Foundation and Chaos by Greg Bear
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Bear is at his most interesting when he resorts to reporting directly on Hari Seldon's trial incorporating imperial intrigues into it and expanding the scope of Seldon's crimes. Building on the very basis of the Foundation series, it comes across as true to the series.

Editor's Choice: Short Fiction Reviews Editor's Choice
short fiction reviews by David A. Truesdale
In his column, David looks at the March 1998 issue of Analog. His choice is
"In Loco Parentis" by Edward H. Seksay.

Voodoo Child Voodoo Child by Michael Reaves
reviewed by Neil Walsh
It's Mardi Gras, 1998. Most of New Orleans is partying. Mal Sangre is plotting. You see, Mal Sangre is an ambitious man. He wants to be a god. And he doesn't care who has to die -- or how many -- or how horribly -- before he attains his goal.

The Godmother's Web The Godmother's Web by Elizabeth Ann Scarborough
reviewed by Regina Lynn Preciado
From wicked stepsisters to Coyote, from the sun-haired maiden to Prince Charming, this fantasy novel invokes the stories that touch and teach us all. The mythic resonances remained with Regina weeks after reading the last page.

Kissing the Beehive Jonathan Carroll Reading List
compiled by Rodger Turner
His first novel, Land of Laughs, marked Carroll as an author to watch and placed him on many readers' favourite writer list. Now with the recent release of Jonathan Carroll's latest novel, Kissing the Beehive, the time has come for a detailed look at the fiction of this award-winning author.

Daughter of Troy Daughter of Troy by Sarah B. Franklin
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Lisa's view is that Franklin's version of this era is an entertaining one. The writing flows smoothly and maintains the reader's interest. Colourful, legendary figures, seen in the daily details of the lives, make for high adventure and down-to-earth survival fare.

Imposter Imposter by Valerie Freireich
reviewed by Mark Shainblum
This novel has many things going for it: sympathetic characters, a rich and credible future civilization, and a genuine sense of wonder absent from much current SF. More, the background and settings of this intriguing novel are almost as interesting as the foreground characters.

First Novels

Black Wine Black Wine by Candas Jane Dorsey
reviewed by Alexander von Thorn
Alexander felt that the author wrote with Gibsonesque authority, simply displaying her world without bothering to explain things that her characters take for granted. Black Wine is a powerful story which will change the world view of many readers.

Second Looks

Star Trek: Trek To Madworld Star Trek: Trek To Madworld by Stephen Goldin
reviewed by Leon Olszewski
Goldin poses the question: what is it we need in life and what do we miss if it is not there? Of the answers that are given, many are expected. Others show a deeper understanding of human nature. And it is human nature, not alien cultures which we explore through Star Trek.


Conceiving the Heavens Conceiving the Heavens by Melissa Scott
reviewed by Mark Shainblum
Though the sections about the act of writing, finishing what you start and getting agented and published are useful, it's where Scott teaches you how to conceive new languages, dream whole new peoples and build entire worlds where this book really shines. Those chapters alone are worth the price of the whole book.

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