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Entries Tagged as 'science fiction'

Catherynne M Valente: Space Opera

12 Aug 2018 · No Comments

I loved this book so much it’s hard for me to write coherently about it. The language: dense, rich, vivid musical. The premise: yes, Eurovision in space, played for laughs, but not JUST for laughs, also a glorious, delirious refutation of “rare earth” and “habitable zones,” a dizzying celebration of near-infinite diversity. A plot twist, [...]

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Tags: comic · s-title · science fiction · v-author

Leigh Jenkins: Catherine the Inquisitor

11 Jan 2016 · No Comments

Interesting, if not always compelling, alternate Tudor history tale. sometimes felt like Jenkins was more ingested in showing off research than telling a story, but I still had some problems maintaining suspension of disbelief. Narrator Henry’s voice convinced me, but he’s a bit dry.

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Tags: c-title · historical · j-author · science fiction

Steven Erikson: Willful Child

11 Jan 2016 · No Comments

I thought this started out very strong, but even though its episodic, aimless nature is explicitly part of the point, I was ready for it to be over well before it was.

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Tags: e-author · satire · science fiction · w-title

Apology; Ann Aguirre: Wanderlust

19 Feb 2014 · No Comments

There’s been mess of foamy-mouthedness around the Science Fiction Writers of America association over the past couple weeks. I won’t link to the petition that jump-started it, but it basically asserts that for the the official bulletin of a professional organization to have editorial standards that avoid hostility to its constituency is an assault on [...]

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Tags: a-author · science fiction · w-title

Rachel Lynn Brody (ed.): Hot Mess – Speculative Fiction About Climate Change

10 Nov 2013 · 1 Comment

The handful of stories in Brody’s collection clearly have an agenda of raising consciousness of and concern about the implications of climate change. Socially or politically motivated art is tricky: it can succeed in communicating its objectives without necessarily exhibiting the general hallmarks of literary merit. In literary terms, I found Hot Mess a mixed [...]

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Tags: b-author · fantasy · fiction · h-title · satire · science fiction

Mick Farren: The Quest of the DNA Cowboys, Synaptic Manhunt

07 Sep 2013 · No Comments

Farren’s “DNA Cowboys” trilogy had been on my to-read list for a long time, and I finally decided to give it a go. It’s a simultaneous homage to and send up of Burroughs-style “planetary romance,” raunchier, more overtly parodic, and much less structured than Philip José Farmer’s “World of Tiers” novels, but not entirely dissimilar. [...]

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Tags: f-author · fantasy · q-title · s-title · science fiction

Adam Roberts: Jack Glass: The Story of a Murderer

10 May 2013 · No Comments

There was a lot I appreciated about Robert’s elegantly crafted Jack Glass, but I definitely didn’t think it succeeded at everything it set out to do.
The middle section of the novel, for instance, offers a classically structured whodunnit and — skirting spoilers — I think Roberts is trying to get the reader so far in [...]

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Tags: j-title · r-author · science fiction

Greg Ketter: Shelf Life: Fantastic Stories Celebrating Bookstores

26 Mar 2013 · No Comments

Greg Ketter, owner of Minneapolis’ DreamHaven books describes this volume as a labor of love, and that’s evident. But its thematic focus is so narrow that it’s probably better dipped into than read straight-through: it’s a bit too easy to play spot-the-trope (haunted bookstore, haunted books, store-of-books-never-written, store-of-books-that-warp-reality), and I found the quality uneven.
I give [...]

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Tags: fantasy · horror · k-author · s-title · science fiction

Christopher L. Bennett: Only Superhuman

25 Nov 2012 · No Comments

I had very ambivalent reactions to Only Superhuman.
I really liked the central concept. Bennett starts with a fairly optimistic future in which, a century hence, there are hundreds of space habitats in the inner- and mid-solar system. The environment is rife with social schisms and empire/colony-ish tensions. The novelty is in Bennett postulating that [...]

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Tags: b-author · o-title · science fiction

Johan Harstad: 172 Hours on the Moon

23 Sep 2012 · No Comments

I think I stumbled on Johan Harstad’s 172 Hours on the Moon when I was looking for John Barnes’ Losers in Space; both novels share the plot element of young people trying to get off of Earth to boost their social standing. Aside from that, they could scarcely be more different. In the alternate [...]

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Tags: #-title · h-author · horror · science fiction · young adult