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Elizabeth Moon

Shadows of the New Sun Shadows of the New Sun edited by J. E. Mooney and Bill Fawcett
reviewed by Dave Truesdale
One can only imagine how daunting it must have been for the contributors, when they realized they were going to attempt to write new fiction that would, with any luck, come within hailing distance of the quality, general artfulness, and philosophical nuance of a Gene Wolfe tale, whom no less than Ursula K. Le Guin has remarked that "Wolfe is our Melville." A tall order, indeed, and one the authors have filled with assurance, a steady hand, and even panache, for each of the nineteen tales herein are entertaining in their own right and display the breadth and vitality evinced in much of the work they honor. The icing on the cake is not only one new Wolfe story, but two; one lighthearted to open the book and one more meditative and reflective to close the book.

Michael Moorcock

Close To My Heart: New Worlds: An Anthology Close To My Heart: New Worlds: An Anthology edited by Michael Moorcock
reviewed by Martin Lewis
"I'm still not entirely sure what this book was doing in my school library. That was the original 1983 edition, of course, already ten years old by the time I came to read it. Presumably it was part of some job lot of paperbacks donated to the school because I can't imagine our librarian actively acquiring it. However it got there though, it was far more attractive than the books that surrounded it."

New Worlds: An Anthology New Worlds: An Anthology edited by Michael Moorcock
reviewed by Matthew Cheney
Some of the best science fiction stories of the 60s and early 70s are collected here, among them "Running Down" by M. John Harrison, "Angouleme" by Thomas M. Disch, and "Traveler's Rest" by David I. Masson. For a reader seeking high-quality writing, there's not much else between these covers, though tastes vary, and certainly some readers will be more impressed by a handful of the other pieces.

Absolute Promethea: Book One Absolute Promethea: Book One by Alan Moore
reviewed by Susan Dunman
College student Sophie Bangs has no idea what she's getting herself into as she wraps up research for her term paper about a literary heroine named Promethea. Discovering that this enigmatic woman has appeared in poetry, comic books, and urban legends since the 18th century, Sophie is convinced this is no coincidence and is determined to learn the true identity of Promethea.

Tom Strong Tom Strong by Alan Moore
reviewed by Susan Dunman
Heroes can be so complicated these days. Their motives are smudged in ever darker shades of grey while their angst-ridden lives seem less than rewarding. Are you ready for a hero without all that emotional baggage? Then look no further than Tom Strong. Tom Strong has what it takes to keep the citizens of Millennium City safe from an assorted menagerie of villains.

Voice of the Fire Voice of the Fire by Alan Moore
reviewed by Neil Walsh
This novel is actually a collection of thematically-linked stories, 12 of them, that all take place in Northampton over a span of 6,000 years. The first story, set in 4,000 BC, is narrated by a simpleton paleolithic nomad, who speaks in a difficult dialect, with a severely limited vocabulary, strange grammar, and a naively warped understanding of the world around him. Each succeeding story uses progressively more elegant language as each jumps ahead further in history, until the last episode, which is set in 1995, the time of the author's writing.

The Courtyard The Courtyard by Alan Moore
reviewed by Matthew Peckham
It's a hard-boiled Lovecraftian tale with a linguistic angle that plays with the signifying power of uttered words in altered states. The narrator is an FBI covert agent named Aldo Sax. His unique talent, as he puts it, is anomaly theory, the ability to "[take] the leftover pieces from various jigsaw puzzles and [see] what picture they make when you put them together." His investigation into a series of methodologically related homicides has deposited him into a seedy den of iniquity where he proceeds to unravel the mystery.

Northwest of Earth Northwest of Earth by C.L. Moore
reviewed by Paul Kincaid
When we first meet Northwest Smith, he is leaning in a doorway in a dusty frontier town. He is tall and lean and sunburned and dressed in old leather. A pistol is strapped low on his hip. He is, in other words, a cowboy. The fact that the brawling frontier town is on Mars and the pistol in his holster fires a heat ray does not alter the fact that he is a classic drifter, a man without ties who will ride into any lawless town looking for adventure and ride out again afterwards without a backward glance.

Miracle In Three Dimensions Miracle In Three Dimensions by C.L. Moore
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
Catherine Moore is probably best known to SF and fantasy readers for her many collaborations with partner and husband Henry Kuttner, a partnership that produced such classics as "The Vintage Season" and "Mimsy Were The Borogoves." But before that Catherine was a successful writer on her own, and the stories of C.L. Moore were mainstays of the science fiction magazines of the 30s. This was the pulp era, a time when magazine SF was in its infancy and writers were making up the rules as they went along.

Sacré Bleu: A Comedy d'Art Sacré Bleu: A Comedy d'Art by Christopher Moore
reviewed by David Soyka
As with Christopher Moore's previous takes on Shakespeare, the New Testament, horror movies and the whole vampire shtick, the irreverent treatment, this time, with a topic associated with holy matters retains reverence of its subject. In this case, the French Impressionists and the idea that maybe Vincent Gogh didn't off himself in a suicidal depression, but was perhaps the victim of his muse, or possibly the entity victimizing his muse.

Practical Demonkeeping Practical Demonkeeping by Christopher Moore
an audiobook review by Jennifer McCann
Pine Cove is a sleepy little tourist town which is populated with characters like Augustus Brine, the owner of a popular shop that sells bait, tackle and fine California wines; Rachael, the homicidal, vegan, aerobic instructing witch; and "Breeze" an aging semi-bald surfer dude. They are all about to be joined by two new visitors, Travis and his constant companion, Catch -- the man-eating demon from Hell.

A Dirty Job A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore
reviewed by Charlene Brusso
Meet thirty-year-old Charlie Asher, mild-mannered owner of a thrift shop in colorful San Francisco. Charlie's small business pays the bills, and he loves his wife Rachel and the brand new baby girl they've just welcomed into the family. As an average "Beta Male" just trying to get by comfortably in a city known for the unusual, Charlie wouldn't normally stand out from the crowd -- nor would he want to. But fate has something more planned for Charlie, despite his best efforts to avoid it.

Fluke Fluke by Christopher Moore
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Marine behavioral biologist Nate Quinn wants to answer one question: why do whales sing? He's in the right place to research 'til he drops in a compound in Maui. He has an extremely motley crew backing him up, an eccentric patron, a reborn whitebread Rastaferian, a tempting research assistant, etc. His rival may have more money and flash, but they are really the same animal/different plumage.

The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove by Christopher Moore
reviewed by Todd Richmond
The sleepy town of Pine Cove threatens to boil over when their sole clinical psychiatrist decides to takes all of her patients off anti-depressants after one of them commits suicide. This is a strangely delightful story with a zany group of characters, a 100-foot lizard, and a totally unpredictable plot.

Grail Island of the Sequined Love Nun by Christopher Moore
reviewed by Steven H Silver
What is the author of Practical Demonkeeping and Bloodsucking Fiends up to now? Steven Silver investigates.

Demon Hunter X Demon Hunter X by Jim Moore
a gaming module review by Don Bassingthwaite
Think of the book as a haiku or a piece of calligraphy: the best expression in the fewest number of words or strokes. This is a clean, spare book and fabulous because of it.

Civil War Civil War by Stuart Moore
an audio review by Dale Darlage
Marvel's Civil War is a "reboot" of the Marvel universe. It is not a fundamental change like the Star Trek re-boot that came with the last movie. Spider-Man is still Spider-Man and Iron Man still flies around and tries to control everything through Stark Industries. But some minor characters are killed and groups like S.H.I.E.L.D. and The Avengers are forever changed.

Carolan's Concerto Carolan's Concerto by Caiseal Mór
reviewed by Alma A. Hromic
The back blurb on this book calls it a "joyous romp" -- and never has a truer blurb been written. It has the kind of legendary hybrid Celto-Catholic vigour which seems to have originated in, and flourished nowhere other than, old Ireland. This is the sort of world where it is not only possible but practically expected of you to go straight from a mid-winter revel with the Sidhe in the Hollow Hills to the Christmas Midnight Mass, by way of a confession that a priest is not only expected to believe verbatim but also to forgive and, much harder, tolerate.

Lyda Morehouse

Sinning In Sevens Sinning In Sevens edited by Silvana Moreira and Antonio de Macedo Simetria
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
This may be your first look into the world of Portuguese SF and fantasy. The publisher, Simetria FC & F, is the Portuguese language sibling to SFWA and BSFS. Thanks to this fantastic bilingual anthology, anglophone readers can now discover the rich vein of talent in Portugal and Brazil.

Richard Morgan

Ghost Spin Ghost Spin by Chris Moriarty
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
It starts when Catherine Li's lover, the artificial intelligence known as Cohen, commits suicide. Unwilling to believe it, Catherine takes off in pursuit of what she thinks must be the truth, and, when she's willing to admit it, revenge. By the end of her journey, several characters from two previous novels have re-appeared, past actions have been explained, confronted, and too often regretted, and the possibility, but just the possibility, of a whole new post-human future has appeared.

Spin Control Spin Control by Chris Moriarty
reviewed by Donna McMahon
Arkady seems to be a lamb sent to slaughter. Nothing in his sheltered, heavily socialized upbringing in a deep space creche with hundreds of identical A-series Rostov Syndicate clones has prepared him for being dumped on a dying Earth as a pawn in a cynical and violent espionage game. He's never been outside Syndicate space before, never mind on the ground in war-ravaged Israel among un-engineered humans.

Spin Control Spin Control by Chris Moriarty
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
Spin Control is the author's second venture into the universe she first crafted in Spin State. But whereas Spin State was high-tech, hard SF set in space and alien environments, Spin Control, as the title implies, is a claustrophobic, intense look at the politics of a near-future earth, and the growing split between what's left of humanity on Earth and its post-human descendants in space.

Leopard Lord Leopard Lord by Alanna Morland
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Were-leopards, dueling deities, and true love meet in this romantic fantasy adventure. Varian is the heir to Leopard's Gard, a barony whose mountainous lands form a barrier between the populous countries of the south and the northern wastelands controlled by an evil, nameless god.

NightScape NightScape by David Morrell
reviewed by Cindy Lynn Speer
In his introduction, the author reflects on his childhood and his realization of the pain his mother suffered throughout her life. The result is that all of these stories, unbeknownst to him, have a theme of obsession. Every person in this collection gets an idea in their head, and it haunts them. They all pay a price for it. Sometimes things end well despite this price, sometimes not, just as in life.

The Uglimen The Uglimen by Mark Morris
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
It's so easy to equate evil with the grotesque. Who doesn't fear the razor-grin of the moray eel, but squeal with delight at the sight of dolphins playing happily offshore? After the thousands of years humans have been around, you'd think we would have gotten past that superficial analysis, but we still believe anything "imperfect" might hurt us. Maybe that why the evil behind beautiful masks is so difficult to perceive until it's much too late.

Supergods Supergods by Grant Morrison
reviewed by Nathan Brazil
Anyone who has read Marvel or DC comics over the past couple of decades will recognise Grant Morrison as someone who first came to prominence in what amounted to a British invasion. A cultural and creative exchange that, like its musical equivalent back in the 60s, helped to both reinvent and ultimately revitalise the art form.

Judge Dredd: Crusade & Frankenstein Division Judge Dredd: Crusade & Frankenstein Division by Grant Morrison & Mark Millar
reviewed by Sandra Scholes
Mega-City One is a post apocalyptic nightmare vision of the future where every citizen is a potential criminal who could run riot on the mean streets with only one man who can stop him, and countless others -- Judge Dredd. Each judge including Dredd is the law and judge in one person, they have the power to end the lives of criminals if they are deemed to be dangerous enough. Though what do they do against another Judge who has turned to evil?

Paraspheres Paraspheres edited by Rusty Morrison and Ken Keegan
reviewed by David Soyka
This anthology has a mouthful of a subtitle -- "Extending Beyond the Spheres of Literary and Genre Fiction Fabulist and New Wave Fabulist Stories." It reflects the latest categorical gyrations, although, to their credit, the discussion the editors offer is actually quite straightforward. Essentially, their position is "that there are really at least three different kinds of fiction: genre, literary (in its realistic, character-based sense), and a third type of fiction that really has no commonly accepted name, which does have cultural meaning and artistic value and therefore does not fit well in the escapist formula genres, but which has non-realistic elements that exclude it from the category of literary fiction."

Conjunctions: 39 -- The New Wave Fabulists Conjunctions: 39 -- The New Wave Fabulists edited by Bradford Morrow
reviewed by William Thompson
Boasting some of the most well-known names associated with contemporary fantastic fiction and accompanied by essays from noted critics John Clute and Gary K. Wolfe, one approaches this anthology with a degree of anticipation. Expectation is perhaps also whetted by the format of its publication: this respected literary journal. Rarely does fantastic fiction receive such a forum, let alone acknowledgement in an academic press. The reader might therefore justifiably expect to read, as the publication release promises, a gathering of "bold, distinctive fiction."

James Morrow

The SFWA European Hall of Fame The SFWA European Hall of Fame edited by James and Kathryn Morrow
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Every few years, American editors seems to rediscover that there is science fiction beyond the borders of the United States. When this happens, collections appear spotlighting the work of Australian, or Canadian, or European science fiction authors. The latest rediscovery has now been made under the auspices of the SFWA and has resulted in this anthology of sixteen short stories by European authors representing thirteen linguistic traditions.

The Mythic Fantasy of Robert Holdstock The Mythic Fantasy of Robert Holdstock edited by Donald E. Morse and Kálmán Matolcsy
reviewed by Paul Kincaid
When Robert Holdstock died, late in 2009, he left behind a body of acclaimed work that effectively constituted a paradigm shift in how we regard fantasy. But there was no equivalent body of critical work that his significance in the genre should warrant. This volume is a first step towards filling that gap. But only a first, and at times rather tentative, step.

Bar Crawl of the Damned Bar Crawl of the Damned by William Morton
reviewed by Kristen Pederson
The art is well done in a clear, representational pen and ink style that isn't too artsy. The comic follows the adventures of Kurt, a big, round, terminally cheerful biker-leather-Punisher-t-shirt-wearing werewolf with a frightening capacity for alcohol and Sean, a pasty and cadaverous vampire with blank eyes and a slightly more bemused and confused expression.

Malachi's Moon Malachi's Moon by Billie Sue Mosiman
reviewed by A.L. Sirois
Vampires are created by a mutated form of the human disease named porphyria. The sickness does kill most of its victims, but some arise from a death-like state as vampires, supernatural beings who can live for centuries, shape-shift, and even dissolve themselves into a mist. The author's vampires come in three varieties: Predators, corresponding most closely to the classical type of vampire familiar to us from films and books; Naturals, who try to get by as more or less human beings; and Cravens, physically impaired vampires who cannot stand the light of day and who are too weak to supply themselves with blood.

The Gift Of Fire / On The Head Of A Pin The Gift Of Fire / On The Head Of A Pin by Walter Mosley
reviewed by Greg L. Johnson
There are two tales here, two stories of personal struggles and world-changing, mind-altering discoveries. There are myths to be shattered, legends waiting to be born, and lives ready to be changed. In two relatively short novels published in one volume, the author manages to unite the grandness of myth with the reality of everyday life, and the good news is that his characters, and possibly the world, are better for it.

Urban Legends: Strange Stories Behind Modern Myths Urban Legends: Strange Stories Behind Modern Myths by A.S. Mott
reviewed by Chris Przybyszewski
Check your e-mail. What sort of letters do you get? There will be the normal collage of friends sending well wishes (or otherwise), posters to your online journal, maybe a listserv message or two. There will, of course, be the endless reams of spam mail that clog every pore of electronic communications. There will also be, maybe even once or twice a week, some wild story told by a friend of a friend.

The Magic Ring The Magic Ring by Baron de la Motte Fouqué
reviewed by Georges T. Dodds
The book, eruditely and seamlessly mixing elements of Arthurian and later chivalric romances, Norse/Germanic myths, Gothic trappings, and Christian-chivalric ethics, is a clear precursor to William Morris' mediaeval romances, George Macdonald's spiritual fantasies, and to Richard Wagner's Ring of the Nibelung. Macdonald's fantasies and particularly his works on literary theory, along with and Morris' early fantasy works are known to have been an influence on Tolkien, and some more extreme views argue that Tolkien's distaste for Wagner and what his work represented led him to write The Lord of the Rings as an cultural antidote to that of Wagner.

A Critical History of Doctor Who on Television A Critical History of Doctor Who on Television by John Kenneth Muir
reviewed by Steven H Silver
Originally published in 1999, A Critical History of Doctor Who on Television covers the quintessential BBC television series from before its debut on November 23, 1963 through its final airing on December 6, 1989. In addition to examining the individual story lines that the seven incarnations of the Doctor and his companions lived through, the author provides a context for the television series.

Not to be Taken at Bed-Time & Other Strange Stories Not to be Taken at Bed-Time & Other Strange Stories by Rosa Mulholland
reviewed by Mario Guslandi
After a long hiatus, the series Mistresses of the Macabre edited by the invaluable Richard Dalby, an expert of ghost and supernatural British fiction, returns with a collection of short stories by Rosa Mulholland. An Irish writer belonging to the Charles Dickens circle, Mulholland (1841-1921) was the author of several successful, but soon forgotten novels.

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