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Letters to the SF Site

We love letters. They make us think. They make us laugh. They make us sit up and take notice, and get a payment in before service is disconnected.

Mostly, though, we enjoy hearing what you have to say about the SF Site. No publishing enterprise can survive long without paying close attention to its audience, and we're no different. If you've got a comment or thoughtful suggestion, or if you just want to complain about that durned dead link, we want to hear about it.

The Lost Chronicle

From: Patricia Wadley

Science Fiction Chronicle
SF Chronicle
I have always enjoyed your site. Today or last week, or sometime ago [you know memory is the second thing to go] I rec'd my copy of SF Chronicle and in his editorial Andrew Porter writes that SFC is now online at, however, when you type that address in it says that it ain't there. So? Is SF Chronicle not with you guys? Or haven't you got it up and running yet?


SF Chronicle is indeed one of our hosted sites. The URL given by Andrew is incorrect -- the actual one is -- or you can link there directly from the FictionHome site, where we showcase over a dozen professional SF and Fantasy magazines, at

Speaking of Magazines...

From: Gordon van Gelder


F&SF, March 1999
Thanks for faxing the review [The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, March 1999, reviewed by David Soyka]. I must be checking SF Site pretty regularly, since I'd already seen the review and I'm very grateful for it. It's nice to see so much discussion of short fiction!

Gordon Van Gelder
The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction

Cain #1

From: Ren Hayes

Dear A.L. Sirois,

I want to thank you for taking the time to review CAIN #1 on the SF Site [in our February issue]. I thought your review was very well written, professional and never bitter or needlessly cruel. I appreciate all that was said and take each criticism to heart. Indeed, how can someone fix a product if they aren't told what's wrong with it? As said in your article, hopefully CAIN will get better as time goes by. Again, thank you for an honest review.

By the way, if you're at all interested in charting CAIN's progress for, say, a year, I'll gladly give you a free subscription for a year. Maybe at the end of that year, you could review him again and note any improvements or declines you see in the series. Please let me know!

Ren Hayes

Lost Mars

From: Jack Mahan
Luna Marine


I read the novel Semper Mars last year. Great book. Have you heard anything about the second book in the series? Avon EOS doesn't seem to have a web site. If you have any information, it would be appreciated. Thanks

Sure thing. Ian Douglas' Semper Mars was the first novel in The Heritage Trilogy. The second one, Luna Marine, is scheduled for a June release. You can get all the details in this issue's Forthcoming Books column.

By the way, Avon/Eos does have a website -- and a most excellent one, at that. You can find it at

The Mystery of Forthcoming Books

From: Tippi N. Blevins

Hello! I regularly read the reviews on SF Site. I have a story coming up in the anthology, Prom Night, and wondered how books get on the "Forthcoming Books" page. These days, writers need to help promote the publications in which their works appear, so that's what I'm doing. Sort of. I really have no idea what to do. I figured querying you would be a good first step!

Makes sense to us. Titles in the SF Site "Forthcoming Books" column are taken from advance proofs of upcoming books we've been sent for review. The best way to get a book listed is to do the same thing. You can send it to any of our three offices, listed on our Contact page.

The Case of Richard Matheson

From: Faith Meyer

I am a highly enthusiastic fan of Richard Matheson and his many works. I think that it is a disgrace that he does not have any fan mail pages. Therefore, I would like to ask anyone who has ever read any of his works, and is interested in creating an online fan site for him, to please let me know as soon as possible! I am also currently working on a research paper for my author project, and I would love any input on any of his works or any ways to contact him. My email address is: Please feel free to contact me!

AI and the Death of Stanley Kubrick

From: Charles Orth-Pallavicini

The recent death of Stanley Kubrick saddened me. The world has lost a man of great vision. I very much enjoyed his science fiction films and was looking forward to his next in that genre, AI. I read that Ian Watson collaborated on that project, which was in pre-production when Mr. Kubrick died. Would you know how I might find out if there was to be a book treatment or if the script was based (loosely, considering Mr. Watson's involvement) on an already existing novel or story?

Frankly, we've heard very little that's concrete about the rumoured production of the movie AI. For more information, you might want to keep an eye on an Ian Watson fan's website, at

Collector's Unite!

From: David Soyka


I enjoyed your piece on book collecting [The Triumph and Tragedy of SF Collecting, by John O'Neill, March issue]. I'm not nearly as bad as you, but I can certainly identify with the situation. My wife often wonders how I could possibly listen to all the CDs I have. She just doesn't understand that you don't want to be without that rare track just when you're in the mood to hear it, even if it is only once every two years. You think it's a guy thing?

From: Ernest Lilley

I feel your pain. Actually I've become adept at parting with books. For me, the sad truth is that my favorite books are never on the shelves. I've loaned them to someone I hoped would like them... and of course they did.

Nice issue. Lots of stuff. It's really interesting to see how we cover the same ground differently.

Ernest Lilley

From: Georges T. Dodds

I understand perfectly. On occasion I will put out the big bucks for a book, and come up with all sorts of excuses, little white lies and big black nasty ones to my wife. However, my greatest pleasure is haunting non-specialty used bookstores (the older, less frequented, dumpier or more poorly organized the better), finding that obscure but tasty tome for next to nothing, trying to stop the huge grin from engulfing my face in front of the sales clerk, once outside, getting it out quick to touch it, admire the binding, illustrations, savor the aroma, the feel of the paper, and immediately reading the first few pages. A couple of months ago this happened to me where I came across a 1st edition of Guy Boothby's Bushigrams, the first published book by the author of the first serial villain in print, Dr. Nikola. $5 Can, with a nice silver embossed spine, the onion-skin insert between the frontispiece and title page without a nick. The cheapest I've seen any edition of it listed on the net is $85 US. Of course it pays to be looking for fairly obscure older stuff that nobody today has any interest in...

From: Anne Barkworth

Being a collector is wonderful, and just as non-collectors can't understand the urge to preserve and take care of books (any kind but especially speculative fiction), I can't understand how anyone could bear to part with a book. Books open so many different worlds. I hadn't realized until recently how serious I was about collecting until I realized that my room-mate thought that many of the books on my shelf were unread due to the excellent condition of the spine, and I did have to be strict on keeping the book jacket on the book and not using excess hand cream when reading books. I also bought a house that was vastly out of proportion for a single occupant expressly to be able to accommodate my books. Books are a member of my family, so I quash any guilt feelings concerning the cost, and besides, I don't have an extensive wardrobe full of designer clothes which are even more expensive and quite frankly, less useful. My large collection has been automated; my own database, including cover abstracts, has taken time and effort but I consider it well worth it when friends ask "do you remember the name of that book with this character in it?" and I can provide the answer.

Thanks for reminding me of the Scholastic Books; I used to get those at school in Toronto and my teacher unpacked them painfully slowly too, strange how I'd forgotten the excitement of receiving books.

In appreciation of your editorials,
Anne Barkworth

Waiting for Night's Dawn

From: Gerald J. Lepage

I have almost finished reading Peter F. Hamilton's fantastic series The Reality Dysfunction and The Neutronium Alchemist and I was wondering if you might have any idea when the next in the series will be released? Also, are there any plans to turn this into some sort of movie series, because I believe it would be fantastic.

The third volume in Hamilton's Night's Dawn trilogy is titled The Naked God, and is scheduled for a fall of '99 release in the UK. It does not have a release date in the US yet. And as for the movie... we're not aware of any plans, but to do it justice would take an 80-hour production. Maybe Kevin Costner will do it...

Ben Bova's Return to Mars

From: Frank Cone

Art: Vincent DiFate
I've heard that Bova is working on another Mars book called Return to Mars. Haven't seen it on any forthcoming list yet. Have you heard anything?

Visit your site often and enjoy it very much.

Yes indeed. The book is slated for release in June from Avon, but if you'd like an early glimpse an excerpt appears as the cover story for the February 1999 issue of Analog Science Fiction and Fact, "Mount Olympus."

Upcoming Issues

In future issues of the SF Site we'll have plenty of reviews of exciting recent releases, including:

Mad Ship by Robin Hobb
Enchantment by Orson Scott Card
The Quantum Rose by Catherine Asaro
Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson
Into the Darkness by Harry Turtledove
Rainbow Mars by Larry Niven
The Extremes by Christopher Priest

Plus our usual columns and detailed New Arrivals features... and perhaps even a surprise or two. Be sure to join us on April 1st. We'll be here.

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