needs more demons?

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Entries from Apr 2012

Lee Carroll: Black Swan Rising

26 Apr 2012 · No Comments

I found myself dawdling as I got near the end of Black Swan Rising, because I didn’t want to reach the end.
The broad strokes of Garet James’ story follow a familiar template (make allies/learn skills/face a rising evil) but the details feel surprisingly fresh. The husband-and-wife authorial team (Carol Goodman/Lee Slonimksy) offer a take on [...]

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Tags: b-title · c-author · fantasy

Jack Matthews: Hanger Stout, Awake!

25 Apr 2012 · No Comments

Hanger Stout, Awake! arrived to my library hold shelf after I’d lost all recollection of what had called it to my attention. It was written in 1967, and was my first exposure to Jack Matthews. Superficially, it doesn’t seem like my kind of book at all. Clyde Stout, who involuntarily assumes the nickname Hanger, is [...]

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Tags: fiction · h-title · m-author

Lizabeth Zindel: A Girl, A Ghost, and the Hollywood Hills

18 Apr 2012 · No Comments

Holly has problems. Her mom died, and her dad has taken up with her mom’s sister, Claudia, which is pretty oogy. Something that may or may not be her mom’s ghost is crying out for vengeance, and Holly doesn’t know whether to trust it or not. Everyone in Holly’s life has names that start with [...]

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Tags: g-title · young adult · z-author

Emma Straub: Other People We Married

09 Apr 2012 · No Comments

The central characters in Straub’s first short story collection are almost all on the cusp of epiphanies that take them by surprise: they need to change, to leave or (more rarely) stay, and change in ways they didn’t anticipate. Straub has a fine and economical eye for telling detail, a good ear for naturalistic dialogue, [...]

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Tags: fiction · o-title · s-author

Barbara Comyns: Who Was Changed and Who Was Dead

03 Apr 2012 · No Comments

This is an odd, disquieting, and hard-to-pin down little novel. Comyns manages to make strengths of qualities that are often considered flaws. The tone varies substantially, sometimes within the span of a single page or less. A vein of mildly satirical comedy of manners runs through it, but it also encompasses an eerie streak not [...]

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Tags: c-author · fiction · w-title

Edgar Rice Burroughs: The Mars Trilogy

01 Apr 2012 · 1 Comment

I saw the John Carter movie (1/3 awesome, 2/3 slow,sappy,dumb/hard-to-follow) and wanted to revisit the original novel, mostly to see if there was quite as much time spent on the Earth backstory (answer: not by a long shot). But after reading A Princess of Mars I realized the John Carter film incorporated several major plot [...]

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Tags: b-author · fantasy · g-title · p-title · science fiction · w-title