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From the Editor
SF Insite: Reviews Editor Neil Walsh wants your vote for our 3rd annual Readers' Choice Best Read Of 2000 list.
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Please note:
We were about to post this issue on the 1st of December, when technical difficulties (the DSL network collapsed) prevented connection to the server which hosts SF Site. It took a few days, but we were able to make alternate arrangements. This issue will remain through the month of December. Apologies to our loyal visitors.
Robert Sawyer A Conversation With Robert Sawyer
An interview with Kim Fawcett
On the ethical responsibilities of SF:
"We SF writers fill an ecological niche that no one else does. We aren't beholden to industry or government grants. We can freely speculate on the pluses and minuses of new inventions; in William Gibson's words, we can, and should, be profoundly ambivalent about new technologies. There is a faction of SF writers that use the genre for pure technological boosterism; science can do no wrong. There's also another faction that still intones that old B-movie cliché that "there are some things man was not meant to know." But I think the majority of us fall in the middle."

The Telling The Telling by Ursula K. Le Guin
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
What is the strength of a word? What is the weakness of censorship? Can a message, a way of life, a people ever be truly wiped away? The author puts the reader in the middle of this struggle and allows the truth to unveil itself. For those caught up in the journey it is a revelation; one that will play through the mind again and again.

When The King Comes Home When The King Comes Home by Caroline Stevermer
reviewed by Pat Caven
In a Renaissance world allayed alongside our own, Hail Rosmer is an artist's apprentice studying in the city of Aravis. Two centuries past, the fabled King Julian IV disappeared into legend. The promise of his mythical return has become synonymous with wild dreams fulfilled. And Hail is just such a dreamer. But ambitious apprentices soon discover they have enemies.

The 6th Day The 6th Day
a movie review by Rick Norwood
This movie, like Demolition Man, is a different breed of cat. Both films have a lot of fun with ways in which the future is different from the present. Stallone knits a sweater. Schwarzenegger smokes an illegal cigar.

Unbreakable Unbreakable
a movie review by Rick Norwood
This is the kind of film where any synopsis will inevitably give away most if not all of the plot. Rick has a few words about that and the movie's trailer.

The Grand Ellipse The Grand Ellipse by Paula Volsky
reviewed by Hank Luttrell
One of the wonders of Jules Verne's work is that modern readers can still delight in his story telling, even after a century has made his vision of the future obsolete. The author must have wanted to use Verne's charming approach to story telling as the starting point for her new book. This world isn't quite ours; for one thing, magic works, though in many areas emerging technology is replacing sorcery as a way of getting things done.

Graven Images Graven Images edited by Nancy Kilpatrick and Thomas S. Roche
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Perhaps the most disturbing story is Lois Tilton's "The Goddess Danced," which presents a view of modern India as alien to mainstream American thought as any culture created by science fiction authors. Meena falls into a downward spiral, not of her own making, but she continually makes the best of her situation and retains the faith her mother passed on to her.

Shadows Bend Shadows Bend by David Barbour and Richard Raleigh
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
What if Robert E. Howard and H.P. Lovecraft had met? And what if the impetus for their meeting had been a series of events eerily resembling Lovecraft's own weird fiction? That's the premise which propels Howard and Lovecraft on a supernatural road trip, with nothing less than the future of the world at stake.

Forthcoming Books Forthcoming Books
compiled by Neil Walsh
Here's a sampling of some of the F&SF books that are headed our way in the coming months...

Far Frontiers Far Frontiers edited by Martin H. Greenberg and Larry Segriff
reviewed by Rich Horton
The anthology's theme is simply the exploration of new frontiers: frontiers in space, or in knowledge, or in our characters. Rich's favourites include "Traces" by Katherine M. Massie-Ferch, Robin Wayne Bailey's "Angel on the Outward Side" and Terry D. England's "Out of the Cradle."

Asimov's Science Fiction, September 2000 Asimov's Science Fiction, September 2000
reviewed by Nick Gevers
Highlights of this issue include Stephen Baxter's novella "Silver Ghost," and the short stories "Comp.Basilisk FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)" by David Langford and "Tinkerbell is Dying" by John Alfred Taylor.

Rebel Sutra Rebel Sutra by Shariann Lewitt
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Hostile, barren Maya is a backwater colony world, all but forgotten by the galactic Empire. Two races have settled there: the elite genetically-enhanced "Changed," who live a luxurious sheltered life in the artificially-controlled environment of the Dome; and a larger population of ordinary humans, who eke out a precarious existence in the teeming, dilapidated city of Babelion. Both groups believe the Empire perished in the violent social upheavals that long ago forced them to flee Earth and seek out a new home.

Kinsmen of the Grail Kinsmen of the Grail by Dorothy James Roberts
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
Gawain has been a knight for some 20-odd years; he's still a powerful knight but he knows he's slowing down and that he increasingly needs to rely on his experience rather than merely physical prowess. He's just a bit irked when the young Perceval, who has been kept shielded from all knightly pursuits by his mother, goes off to Camelot, pulls an enchanted sword out of a stone, and becomes "super-knight" overnight.

4 Stories 4 Stories by Kelly Link
reviewed by Rich Horton
Her stories are elliptical and spooky. She often reworks material from fairy tales. Her writing seems to fit mostly the category "slipstream," as well as often being "horror" of a certain kind. She has an ironic and engaging voice, in its way most similar to Karen Joy Fowler. Her stoires are always interesting, although they may sometimes leave the reader quite puzzled, sometimes quite exhilarated, and occasionally both.

Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet No. 6 Lady Churchill's Rosebud Wristlet No. 6
reviewed by David Soyka
Now here's a cool little publication that you're not likely to get a hold of at a "Borders and Noble" superchain. So unless you live near a speciality store such as Dreamhaven in Minneapolis or Avenue Victor Hugo Bookshop in Boston, you're going to have to subscribe to what this self-mocking zine says is "supposed to be published twice a year." You could do worse things with 10 bucks than to get four issues of it.

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Rick continues his answer to the question, Whatever Happened to Mr. Straczynski? The gentleman who gave us the Babylon 5 and the Crusade TV shows has moved on to Rising Star. And he offers us tips on what's worth watching on television during December.

New Arrivals Mid-November Books
compiled by Neil Walsh
Some of the latest books received at the SF Site include a new Xanth novel from Piers Anthony, a new Lost Regiment novel from William R. Forstchen, a new Rogue Wizard novel from Christopher Stasheff, a new Wheel of Time novel from Robert Jordan, and a new anthology from Martin H. Greenberg and John Helfers.

Ellen Datlow A Conversation With Ellen Datlow
An interview with Rodger Turner
On choosing stories:
"First, I started with stories that I've loved and stuck in my mind from when I first began reading SF. I look for those stories that transcend the time in which they were written, and those that haven't been overexposed in the past few years. Or just stories that I think readers would enjoy and may not have read."

Second Looks

Non-Stop Non-Stop by Brian W. Aldiss
reviewed by Rich Horton
The generation ship has broken down. After hundreds of years, most of the inhabitants have forgotten even that they are on a ship. They live nasty, brutish and short lives in the corridors of the ship, amid a tangle of hydroponics. Roy Complain, a hunter of the tribe of Greene, is recruited by a "priest" named Marapper to join a band of five people in a journey to "Forwards," the front of the ship (as the priest assures them it really is), to find the "control room." Their journey is full of incident: battles with evolved rats and with "Giants" and with the mysterious "outsiders"; discovery of the "swimming pool"; encounters with weightlessness.


The Dictionary of Imaginary Places The Dictionary of Imaginary Places by Alberto Manguel and Gianni Guadalupi
reviewed by Steven H Silver
This book is a tribute to the collective human imagination in more ways than one. It contains more than 1200 imaginary places ranging from Homer's Aiaia to J.K. Rowling's Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Many of the locations included come from much more obscure sources (Tommaso Porcacchi's Le isole piu' famose del mondo); however, the more famous are also well represented (J.R.R. Tolkien's "The Shire").

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