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Archive for March, 2017

Mutiny of the Unknown Alien Slime: A Review of Life

Special to Locus Online

From one perspective, Life represents yet another example of a recent Hollywood trend that I find heartening — a renewed interest in realistic depictions of humanity’s probable future in space. … Regrettably, however, Life ultimately becomes a conventional, and sometimes silly, horror film.

Russell Letson reviews Cory Doctorow

From Locus Magazine’s March 2017 issue

For all of its engagement with What’s Happenin’ Now, Baby, Walkaway feels like good old-fashioned science fiction: part thrill-ride, part warning, part all-night political wrangle with your really smart college roommate.

Gary K. Wolfe reviews Cat Sparks

From Locus Magazine’s March 2017 issue

[Her] fine first novel Lotus Blue, set in a far future Australian wasteland, is as evocative of Terry Dowling’s Rynosseros stories, with their neat sandships, or even of David R. Bunch’s surreal Moderan stories, as it is of George Miller’s monster truck rallies.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Caitlín R. Kiernan

Special to Locus Online

The heterogeneous tales assembled in this collection display Kiernan’s large but tightly interlocked range of interests. Outsiders, art, the elements, transcendence, sex, love, failure, responsibility.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Kim Stanley Robinson

Special to Locus Online

This book is amiable, humorous, good-natured, optimistic, in love with the quotidian and with the crazy quilt adaptive existence that life under stress assumes. Robinson gives us a host of fascinating, interlocking plots, and some of them have global resonance.

Adrienne Martini reviews Carrie Vaughn

From Locus Magazine’s February 2017 issue

Carrie Vaughn’s Martians Abroad clearly shares DNA with Heinlein’s juveniles, and is, the author states, and homage to Podkayne of Mars.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Paul La Farge

Special to Locus Online

Put most simplistically, it’s a novel examining the friendship between H. P. Lovecraft and his teenage pal, Robert Barlow, who became HPL’s literary executor. But it’s also much more than that, as we shall see.

Bungle in the Jungle: A Review of Kong: Skull Island

Special to Locus Online

Kong: Skull Island actually begins quite promisingly, as we are introduced to a diverse and generally appealing cast of characters, and they gather together to journey to the mysterious Skull Island and confront the enormous, and initially hostile, King Kong. … Unfortunately, the film devolves into an iterative, and increasingly unpleasant, series of variations on the two basic set pieces observed in all giant monster movies: humans vs. monster, and monster vs. monster.

Gary K. Wolfe reviews Ken Liu

The Wall of Storms, Ken Liu (Saga 978-1-4814-2430-1, $29.99, 860pp, hc) October 2016. In one of those enjoyable but pointless conven­tion barroom debates a few years ago, I found myself drawn into the question of whether the term ‘‘fantasy novel’’ is a redundancy or an oxymoron. The argument, as I recall it (and I don’t […]

Langan reviews Pinborough: They Say a Girl Died Here Once

From Locus Magazine’s March 2017 issue

The family at the heart of They Say a Girl Died Here Once, Sarah Pinborough’s excellent new novel, is in retreat. Three years prior to the book’s opening, Anna, its teenaged protagonist, was slipped a date-rape drug at a party.

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