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SF Insite: Contributing Writer Rich Horton gives us a glimpse into history with his comprehensive article The Original Anthology Series in SF.
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Singer from the Sea Singer from the Sea by Sheri S. Tepper
reviewed by Robert Francis
Returning to a common theme, Tepper's latest novel explores the consequences of mankind inserting itself into an alien world and running afoul of the complex and interwoven alien ecosystems. In this case, the world of Haven is only one of many settled after good ol' Earth got used up. But on Haven the mysterious "batfly fever" selectively targets, and kills, nursing women. The result is that women have a limited life expectancy while men, and the men of the aristocracy in particular, live a very, very long time.

The Forest of Hours The Forest of Hours by Kerstin Ekman
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
This is a wonderful Rabelaisian romp that combines elements of fairy tale, Norse saga and historical novel, 16th century ribald literature, mysticism, alchemy, and close interpersonal relationships reminiscent of Ingmar Bergman films.

Speaking Stones Speaking Stones by Stephen Leigh
reviewed by Jeri Wright
A century after Anais Koda-Levin (Dark Water's Embrace) recognizes her destiny as the first human Sa or midmale, most of the human colony on Mictlan have adapted to the reality of the third sex serving as an evolutionary "stabilizer", although some still see them as a perversion. The colonists now share the world with the native Miccail, but many humans also do not trust the natives. An uneasy truce is endangered when one act of violence sparks another, and both sides face a war of annihilation.

The Chronological Adventures Of Detrius Thesper The Chronological Adventures Of Detrius Thesper by N.E. Doran
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Detrius Thesper is nobody's notion of a hero. Self-centred, cowardly, inept -- he's more like the bungling sidekick who has to be rescued every other chapter. He's a menace to his own safety and to anyone within a kilometre radius. Really though, with a visitor from the future you ought to be able to expect more.

Into the Thinking Kingdoms Into the Thinking Kingdoms by Alan Dean Foster
reviewed by Todd Richmond
A sequel to Carnivores of Light and Darkness, the story picks up where the other left off -- Ehomba, a simple herdsman, has an obligation placed upon him by a dying man to rescue the Visioness Themaryl, the dying man's intended, from the evil Hymneth the Possessed. Todd thinks it may be worth waiting until the final book arrives so that you can finish the trilogy all at once.

My Favorite Science Fiction Story My Favorite Science Fiction Story edited by Martin H. Greenberg
reviewed by Rich Horton
In this anthology, the editor uses a gimmick that Rich has seen before, but one which still has legs. He has selected several prominent SF writers of the present day, and asked them to choose one favorite SF story. Their choices form this anthology.

New Arrivals April Books
compiled by John O'Neill
Brand new books from Stephen King, Orson Scott Card, Tanya Huff, Sharon Shinn, Mercedes Lackey, Diana L. Paxson, Terry Goodkind, Andre Norton & Rosemary Edghill, Christopher Moore -- and a trip to the centre of the Earth courtesy of Rick Wakeman and Patrick Stewart.

The Divided The Divided by Katie Waitman
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
The author has crafted a gripping, thought-provoking, emotionally compelling novel. It's a considerable change of pace from her semi-comic Bildungsroman-like debut, The Merro Tree.

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
In his column, Rick's commentary on SF television includes an episode of Star Trek Voyager, "Think Tank," by Rick Berman, Brannon Braga, and Michael Taylor, one of Star Trek Deep Space Nine, "Penumbra," written by Rene Eschevarria and The X-Files epiosde, "Trevor," written by Jim Guttridge and Ken Hawrliw.

A Cavern of Black Ice Excerpt: A Cavern of Black Ice by J.V. Jones
As the first book in a trilogy, it hints at the true story that will drive them all. While the plot of ancient dark magics is central to the tale, the author does a wonderful job of keeping the reader just a bit unsure of who is key to the story and which characters are going to survive its telling.

Invisible Princess Invisible Princess by Faith Ringgold
reviewed by Lela Olszewski
Faith Ringgold is an artist of international stature. This story was written because her grandchildren wanted to know where the African American princesses were in the fairy tales their grandmother read to them.

Clan Novel: Toreador Clan Novel: Toreador by Stewart Wieck
reviewed by Jonathan Fesmire
World of Darkness fans, get ready for a treat. Clan Novel: Toreador starts a 13-novel vampire epic.  If this book is typical of the series, you can expect vivid writing and a gripping plot throughout.

Colors of Chaos Colors of Chaos by L.E. Modesitt, Jr.
reviewed by Ken Newquist
In some ways, this is like a 634-piece jigsaw puzzle. Its pacing can be slow and seemingly pointless, but as the book develops readers begin to understand the author's reasoning. By the end of the novel, when the last pieces of the plot fall into place, readers can sit back and say "hmmm, that was worth the wait."

Noise & Other Night Terrors Noise & Other Night Terrors by Newton E. Streeter
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
This compact collection of short fiction includes some very grim stuff, with violence and gore aplenty. Most of the stories will wring a wince out of the reader if they don't create a vague sense of nausea. But these are stories with a social conscience. Carnage and morality? Streeter even gets his point across without beating the reader over the head with it.

Rules of Engagement Rules of Engagement by Elizabeth Moon
reviewed by Peter D. Tillman
Esmay Suiza is a likeably nerdy young officer. Her heroic exploits overshadow her difficult childhood, her love life is terrible, she's had a bad-hair life... However, Moon's delightfully Wodehousian aunts-in-space arrive just in time to save Esmay's butt (and career), and to sort out her love troubles. As usual, Moon's fast-&-furious action, meticulous military-medical backgrounding, and formidable storytelling skills carry the day.

The Original Anthology Series in SF The Original Anthology Series in SF
compiled by Rich Horton
It is said that short fiction is central to SF, a convenient form for presenting a single idea, and as such is natural for a "literature of ideas". Many's the clever notion that won't carry a whole novel, but nicely drives 5000 words. This is the first installment of Rich Horton's comprehensive article on original anthology series.

Deliver Us From Evil Deliver Us From Evil by Tom Holland
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Having suffered a fatal overdose of vampire fiction in the late 80s, Victoria tries to steer clear of the genre. But she colun't resist this vampire extravaganza set during the Restoration period in England.

This Symbiotic Fascination This Symbiotic Fascination by Charlee Jacob
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Lisa suggests shipping this book in a reinforced paper sack. This will allow readers to receive their copy in something like anonymity and provide a handy barf bag. You'll be wishing for both by the time you read the last page of this remarkable and sick novel.

The Quantum Rose The Quantum Rose by Catherine Asaro
reviewed by Jeri Wright
On an obscure and almost forgotten world of the Skolian Empire, where legends of past wonders contrast harshly with the constant struggle for survival, a stranger's whim saves a young woman from one unwelcome marriage by plunging her into another.

Forthcoming Books Forthcoming Books
compiled by John O'Neill
Major new novels from James Blaylock and Richard Grant, the second volume of Confluence from Paul J McAuley, Nancy Kress and Jane Yolen kick off new series, and the last posthumous book from Roger Zelazny finally appears -- quite a pair of weeks.

Enchantment Enchantment by Orson Scott Card
reviewed by Ken Newquist
This is a time-travelling story showing what happens when the fairy tale ends. In traditional tales, the knight kisses the princess, she wakes up, and they live happily ever after. In Enchantment, that's just the beginning.

The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon Excerpt: The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon by Stephen King
Stephen King says this story came to him during a baseball game, when he was supposed to be enjoying some R&R after completing two books. Eventually he abandoned his vacation to complete one of his most compact novels in years -- the story of a nine-year-old girl who gets lost in the woods, and soon discovers she's not as alone as she thinks she is. Here is a 2,800-word excerpt, courtesy of Scribner.

Foundation's Triumph Foundation's Triumph by David Brin
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Before his death in 1992, Isaac Asimov began to knit together his two most famous series. David Brin has provided a worthy successor to Asimov's works. The style of writing and issues addressed by Asimov in the Robot novels tended to be very different from what he did with the Foundation novels, and Brin has managed to successfully capture the feel and substance of both.

One Perfect Mate One Perfect Mate by Tracy Cozzens
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Cozzens has taken an old love theme and run it through her own machinery to produce something new and intriguing. She turns out an irresistible plot -- complete with fascinating characters, a wholly new setting, an ear for dialogue, and a pace that keeps you moving at a brisk clip.

New Magazines New Magazines
compiled by John O'Neill
Looking for the best in new magazines? The FictionHome page has news, reviews and links to the finest short fiction on the market, from SF magazines to anthologies and collections.

First Novels

The Bondmate Chronicles The Bondmate Chronicles and Haze of Joran by D.J. Sutherlin
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
Despite some fairly serious flaws, Georges found the books a fun read. The characters are likeable if bordering on cutesy, and the plot, however clichéd, moves forward at a good pace and with plenty of action. Sure, you might not find yourself considering deep philosophical questions about man's presence in the universe, but sometimes that's just what a reader needs.

Second Looks

OMEGA: The Last Days of the World OMEGA: The Last Days of the World by Camille Flammarion
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
A 100 years later, OMEGA is re-issued to give us a fascinating look into the mind of a man living at a time when classical science was about to give way to radical new ideas. The book begins as 25th century earth discovers the impending collision of a comet.


Gurahl Gurahl by Jackie Cassada and Nicky Rea
gaming module review by Don Bassingthwaite
The Gurahl are the werebears of the World of Darkness. In the mythology of the Changing Breeds, they are Gaia's Healers, just as the Garou are Gaia's Warriors. This book looks at the Gurahls' sense of healing and peaceful tradition, which is not to say that it presents a rosy picture of werebears with tea-cosies. There is darkness and there is violence.

Delta Green Delta Green by Adam Scott Glancy et al.
gaming module review by Henry Harding
The mission is a daunting one. Those who have gone before have provided 90s investigator characters with valuable new spells, skills, and weapons. Thanks to them we can now use Uzis and 9mm Glocks against the Fungi from Yuggoth and the Dark Young of Shub-Niggurath.

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