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Archive for 'Books'

Faren Miller reviews Erika Johansen

From Locus Magazine’s July 2014 issue


The Queen of the Tearling portrays the early stages of a quest where reason may be more relevant than you might expect.

Gary K. Wolfe reviews Joe Abercrombie

From Locus Magazine’s July 2014 issue


In an era when fantasy seems enthralled by long series of huge volumes that seem to pass by like freight trains at a crossing when you’re trying to get somewhere, Joe Abercrombie’s Half a King serves as a reminder that there are considerable virtues yet to be found by efficient, on-the-ground storytelling propelled more by plot than by setting, with crisp dialogue, humane characters, and a distinct inward spiral of rapid-fire events.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Scott Nicolay and Rhys Hughes

Special to Locus Online


Thank goodness that so many fine and bold small presses have stepped into the breach. They are performing a vital service to the field, and making all us short-story-philes very happy. They deserve our support. Let’s look at two such volumes today.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Vintage Visions

Special to Locus Online


These sixteen essays all derive from Science Fiction Studies, and appeared from 1976 to 2010, but boast new afterwords. The books they cover date from 1657 (Cyrano de Bergerac) to 1937 (Olaf Stapledon). That’s a lot of rewardingly oddball grandparental material.

Paul Di Filippo reviews K.J. Parker

Special to Locus Online


“Let Maps to Others” is certainly be my favorite piece here. A ironic and blackly humorous account of the rediscovery of a Prester John-style kingdom lost to history involves scholarly rivalry and deceit and royal bull-headedness. It’s comic gold where, as in much comedy, the most vile deeds are the funniest.

Adrienne Martini reviews Tim Pratt

From Locus Magazine’s June 2014 issue


Tim Pratt’s writing just keeps getting better and better. In Heirs of Grace, his voice feels dialed in. The writing is tight and sassy without wasting one word — and he makes it seem easy.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Green Planets

Special to Locus Online


In this era of climate change, when the very fate of the biosphere — and consequently the fate of our species — is up for debate, it’s more important than ever that SF exert its intelligence on the ecologies we inhabit. This is precisely the intention and accomplishment of Green Planets, another of the typically outstanding genre-connected critical works from Wesleyan University Press.

Paul Di Filippo reviews Laline Paull

Special to Locus Online


What Laline Paull has accomplished here is multivalent: a rumination on nature; a portrait of the struggle between individual and the stifling matrix of society; and a depiction of how humanity might organize itself along different lines. I’d call it, in the end, science fiction at its best.

Faren Miller reviews Lauren Owen

From Locus Magazine’s June 2014 issue


Early in Lauren Owen’s first novel The Quick, library scenes help establish the narrative tone. Evidently splendid tomes, “delicious-smelling volumes,” line the shelves of Owen’s library…

Paul Di Filippo reviews James Morrow

Special to Locus Online


What is surprising is its relative brevity, its light-hearted zip, and its rollicking comic tone, compared to the gravitas and black, piercingly satirical humor of his other books. Which is not to say that Morrow’s central theme of the role of religion in humanity’s affairs is absent.


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