WWW: Watch by Robert J. Sawyer
reviewed by Michael M Jones
Blind from birth, 15-year-old Caitlin Dector, with the aid of a device, she can receive and decipher the same visual
cues as everyone else. She can also see the data flow of the Internet and the so-called Webmind, a spontaneously emerging consciousness
existing only on the Web. Even as Caitlin learns to see the world around her for the first time, the Webmind is learning alongside her.
As more people learn of Webmind's existence, some accept it with trepidation and optimism, others with fear
and worse. The Webmind can't stay a secret for long, and the time for it
to choose its purpose for existing is approaching far too quickly. Is it here to help, or harm?
Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi: Backlash by Aaron Allston
reviewed by David Maddox
Luke Skywalker and son Ben continue to follow the trail left by Jacen Solo to discover the former Jedi's reasons
for becoming the despicable Darth Cadeus. In the Outer Rim of the Galaxy, they find themselves tracked by a
mysterious Lost Tribe of Sith and the dark presence that is driving Jedi across the galaxy insane continues
to manipulate and promote dissention and mistrust within the Galactic Alliance.
Napoleon Concerto by Mark Mellon
reviewed by Steven H Silver
The book, an alternate history of Napoleonic France, is based on the concept
of Robert Fulton providing a steam-powered ship to Napoleon. The focus of the novel is on Wolfe O'Sheridane, an
Irishman who has fled his native land and is looking for vengeance against the British invaders. He hooks up with
Fulton in an attempt to persuade the French to give Fulton's experiment a chance.
Crashed by Robin Wasserman
reviewed by Dan Shade
In the future there has been war and terrible poverty. There are, however, an elite few who have the credits to live well.
They have nothing but the finest. America's cities are the refuge of the diseased. No credits, no cure. All of the cities are in various
states of decay. Then there are the CorpCities, owned and operated by corporations. You work for the Corp,
live in Corp housing, and eat Corp food.
Lamp Black, Wolf Grey by Paula Brackston
reviewed by Katherine Petersen
Laura Matthews and her husband, Dan, have bought an ancient longhouse in the Welsh Hills, leaving
their London lives behind. Although Dan returns to London for the work week, Laura immerses herself in the wild
beauty of the landscape, hoping to do her best painting ever and just maybe the magical nature of the area will
help her to conceive the baby she's always wanted. For, in this part of Wales, the veil between reality and
legend remains thin.
The Tramp by L. Ron Hubbard
an audiobook review by Gil T. Wilson
"The Tramp" was originally published in three parts in Astounding Science Fiction. Appearing
in the September, October and November issues during 1938, it is the only story in this audio
release. The action begins when a small-town sheriff shoots an escaping vagrant, Doughface Jack,
in the head. The local doctor works frantically to save Jack's life, relying on unconventional
surgery which involves sewing the two halves of Jack's brain together and replacing the top
of his skull with a silver bowl.
If I Were You by L. Ron Hubbard
an audio review podcast by Gil T. Wilson
This time out, the audiobook contains two stories. "If I Were You" was originally published in the February 1940
issue of Five-Novels Monthly and "The Last Drop" was originally published in Astonishing Stories, November 1941.
One of the key features of the Galaxy Audio releases is their super production quality. With original music, and subtle
yet effective sound effects, these audiobooks are like a great trip back to the days of radio dramas.
Planet of Exile by Ursula K. Le Guin
an audio review podcast by Brian Price
In a far-distant future, the Earth-descendant Farborns have been trapped on the Planet Werel for over
10 local years (that translates to 600 Earth years). Winter is coming and this time the season may
be the harshest yet. The Earthers have made a rough home on this desolate planet, but they realize
that they will have to join with the indigenous nomadic hilf people to survive.
Hard-Luck Diggings: The Early Jack Vance edited by Terry Dowling and Jonathan Strahan
reviewed by Rich Horton
Jack Vance is a familiar name to most SF/Fantasy readers. Now, as his writing career seems to have drawn to a close,
he is getting a welcome new shot of recognition, driven by a memoir, a tribute antholology, and some interesting
new collections of his work. This collection is different from the others in not really selecting
a representative group of his stories, nor a themed set, nor the best. It is instead a choice of some of the more
interesting works from his first decade or so of publishing.
Finch by Jeff VanderMeer
Pennterra by Judith Moffett
reviewed by Christopher DeFilippis
Fractured and weakened by civil war between House Hoegbotton & Sons and Frankwrithe & Lewden,
Ambergris became an easy target for the mysterious gray caps, its
mushroom-like underground denizens, who rose and conquered the city, subjugating it to martial law.
Fungus now blights Ambergris like a cancer, the air thick with spores. Formerly human Partials patrol the
streets, quasi-fungal enforcers who keep the populace in line while the gray caps build two mysterious
towers. But rumors of a resistance persist.
From Hell With Love by Simon R. Green
reviewed by Michael M Jones
When it comes to secret organizations dedicated to protecting the world from all threats, both internal and external,
no group is as resourceful, widespread, or potentially insane as the Droods. And of that infamous family, none is as
dangerous or misunderstood as Eddie Drood, who has saved the world more than a few times in his checkered career. After
a stint as head of the family, he's back to being a nice, normal field agent like he prefers.
Watching the Future
a column by Derek Johnson
Had you asked Derek, ten or eight or even five years ago, who he would pick as the best, most consistent filmmaker directing
movies of the fantastique (to use John Clute's term), the last person he would have cited was Christopher
Nolan. Granted, when Batman Begins opened five years ago, Derek thought it showed a genuine feel for and a high
comfort level with the tropes of the comic book movie -- surprising, especially when one considers that Nolan's three
previous full-length cinematic efforts contained little to no science fictional or fantastic content. And yet...
compiled by Susan Dunman
Recent audiobook releases received by SF Site include works by
Lois McMaster Bujold, Ray Bradbury, Jim Butcher, Orson Scott Card and Cory Doctorow.
At times it's more convenient (and enjoyable) to hear the latest in science fiction and fantasy.
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
It has been a slow summer for SF on TV so Rick has been watching DVDs of series including
Defying Gravity and Fraggle Rock. On TV,
Warehouse 13 and Eureka return. He also gives us a list of what SF is on TV in July.
a column by Rick Klaw and Mark London Williams
Given the fact that many chain bookstores offer extensive graphic novel selections and the existence of
countless collections including seemingly limited interest oddities such as Peter Porker the Spectacular
Spider-Ham, American Comic Group's forgettable 1960s super heroes Nemesis and Magicman, and
Fantagraphics' two volumes of the wonderfully subversive works of Fletcher Hanks, one might think everything
of note ever published has been compiled into graphic novel format. Remarkably, many influential and popular
works remain uncollected. Rick Klaw is here to correct that misperception.
reviewed by Sandra Scholes
The one place the humans wish to go is called
Pennterra, and they view it as a last ditch attempt at colonizing a planet as well as making sure humanity lives on in
one way or another by their own hands. Their only problem lays in the fact that Pennterra, a lone planet, is already
inhabited by aliens thought to be hostile and dangerous.
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
reviewed by Dan Shade
Dan is one of the few. Not the brave but the few who don't like Wicked? How could this be so, you ask, when
a successful Broadway musical has been based upon the book for which millions of copies have sold? The book is so
well loved that 1,159 people have taken the time to write, sometimes ponderous, reviews of the book. He scanned
these and could only find a handful of negative reviews. All he could offer in defense is a bumper sticker.