Notable new SF, Fantasy, and Horror books seen, 16 - 29 May
* Asprin, Robert, & Esther M. Friesner : E.Godz(Baen 0-7434-3605-9, $17, 279pp, hc, May 2003, cover art Gary Ruddell)
Humorous fantasy novel about a magic corporation, E.Godz, Inc., that helps alternate religions with their tax and business problems. Baen's site has this blurb page with links to various chapter excerpts. Reviewed by Carolyn Cushman in the June 2003 issue of Locus Magazine; she concludes "It's not the laugh fest I was expecting from these two authors, but it's still a fun humorous fantasy, with some pithy commentary about human belief systems along the way."
* Banks, L. A. : Minion(St. Martin's Griffin 0-312-31680-1, $12.95, 6+296pp, tpb, June 2003, cover illustration Vince Natale, cover design Michael Storrings)
Vampire novel, first in the "Vampire Huntress Legend" trilogy, with Awakening and Ravenous to follow in January and June 2004 respectively. The back cover has blurbs from Tananarive Due, Brandon Massey, and Susan Sizemore. A website, http://www.vampirehuntress.com/, has been set up about the series, with links to reviews, interviews, and an excerpt (in PDF format).
+ Bova, Ben : Saturn(Tor 0-312-87218-6, $24.95, 412pp, hc, June 2003, jacket art John Harris)
First US edition (UK: Hodder & Stoughton, February 2003).
SF novel, newest in the "Grand Tour" series, following Jupiter (2001) and Venus (2002) and several earlier books including Mars (1992). The Amazon page has the Publishers Weekly review. Bova's site, www.benbova.net/, has links to earlier books and to articles about Creationism and about the Columbia tragedy.
* Gilligan, ElizaBeth : Magic's Silken Snare(DAW 0-7564-0127-5, $6.99, 556pp, pb, April 2003, cover art David Bowers)
Historical fantasy novel, first in the "Silken Magic" series, set in an alternate Renaissance Italy. A first novel. Reviewed by Carolyn Cushman in the May Locus, who called it an "opulent tale of court intrigue and dark magics" and an "excellent first novel". A Locus New & Notable book for June 2003. The Amazon page has the Booklist review by Roland Green. The author has this webpage with links to an updated site that are not (yet?) active.
* Harris, Charlaine : Club Dead(Ace 0-441-01051-2, $6.5, 258pp, pb, May 2003, cover art Lisa Desimini)
Vampire novel, third in the "Southern Vampire" series following Dead Until Dark (2001) and Living Dead in Dallas (2002). It concerns telepathic waitress Sookie Stackhouse, whose vampire boyfriend Bill has apparently been kidnapped, according to Carolyn Cushman's review in the April Locus, who notes the book's "vampire-human-werewolf triangle reminiscent of Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake mysteries, if considerably lighter in tone." The Amazon page has the Booklist review by Kristine Huntley, and reader reviews. The author has this website.
* Hartwell, David G., & Kathryn Cramer, ed. : Year's Best SF 8(HarperCollins/Eos 0-06-106453-X, $7.99, 15+496pp, pb, June 2003)
Anthology of 23 science fiction stories first published in 2002, by authors including Bruce Sterling, Ursula K. Le Guin, Robert Sheckley, Charles Stross, Carol Emshwiller, Greg Egan, Gene Wolfe, and Michael Swanwick; Kathryn Cramer's weblog lists the complete table of contents (scroll down). The publisher's site has this page, with an excerpt from Bruce Sterling's story. The book is reviewed by Gary K. Wolfe (along with other year's best anthologies) in the June 2003 issue of Locus Magazine.
* Jones, Diana Wynne : The Merlin Conspiracy(HarperCollins/Greenwillow 0-06-052318-2, $16.99, 468pp, hc, April 2003, jacket art Cliff Nielsen)
Young-adult time-travel fantasy novel set in the same worlds as Deep Secret. Reviewed by Faren Miller in the April Locus, and a Locus New & Notable book for June 2003. The publisher has this page and excerpt. The author's site has similar links.
* McCarthy, Wil : Hacking Matter(Basic Books 0-465-04428-x, $26, 16+222pp, hc, March 2003, jacket illustration Doug Stern, jacket design Timothy Hsu)
Speculative nonfiction, subtitled "Levitating Chairs, Quantum Mirages, and the Infinite Weirdness of Programmable Atoms". The Amazon page has reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. The author's website has this page with a description and quotes from reviews; the publisher's site has this page.
* Pratchett, Terry : The Wee Free Men(HarperCollins 0-06-001236-6, $16.99, 263pp, hc, May 2003, jacket art Chris Gall, jacket design Hilary Zarycky)
Young-adult humorous fantasy novel, Pratchett's second YA novel set in his Discworld universe after The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents (2001), about "a nine-year-old girl growing up on a sheep farm who doesn't quite fit in and knows it" according to Jonathan Strahan's review in the March 2003 Locus Magazine. Carolyn Cushman's review in the same issue called it "a lovely romp for Pratchett fans of all ages". The Amazon page has a review by Jennifer Hubert. A Locus New & Notable book for June 2003. US website www.terrypratchettbooks.com/ has a contest to win free signed copies, while Pratchett website
The L-Space Web has this page of mostly pre-publication quotes and comments about the book.
* Rodrigues, Luís : Breaking Windows: A Fantastic Metropolis Sampler(Prime Books 1-894815-59-9, $17.95, 245pp, tpb, 2003, cover art Hawk Alfredson, cover design Garry Nurrish)
Anthology of 26 stories, editorials, essays, and interviews all first published by webzine Fantastic Metropolis, which site has a complete table of contents listing here, while the back cover description, and blurbs by Brian W. Aldiss, Paul Di Filippo, and Neil Gaiman, are reproduced on publisher Prime Books' page (for the hardcover edition, ISBN 1-894815-79-3). Contributors include Jeff VanderMeer, Zoran Zivkovic, Michael Moorcock, Barrington J. Bayley, Carol Emshwiller, James Sallis, and China Miéville.
* Weis, Margaret : Mistress of Dragons(Tor 0-765-30468-6, $25.95, 381pp, hc, May 2003, jacket art Stephen Youll, jacket design Carol Russo Design)
Fantasy novel, first in the "Dragonvarld" trilogy, set on a "world where humans and dragons struggle to live together in peace", according to the page on publisher Tor's website. The Amazon page reproduces reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist--the latter a starred review--and has a 5-star reader review from Harriet Klausner.
Pancho Lane frowned at her sister. "His name isn't even Malcolm Eberly. He changed it."Opening lines:
Sarah Richards stood in the middle of her bedroom trying to console her infant who was wailing at the top of her tiny lungs. Yes, she knew what pain was, and wanted to cry out as much as her baby was carrying on right now. Instead, silent tears slid down the sides of her face as she turned her chin up to the ceiling and shut her eyes. How, Lord, was a preacher's wife supposed to deal with the fact that her husband was having an affair?
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