Saturday, 1 September 2007

Sci-Fi Fan Letter Issue 13

Sleeping God
By: Violette Malan
Rather than sitting the characters down for a history lesson they already know, Violette Malan introduces her world through the actions and personalities of her protagonists.
And the actions begin with a well orchestrated scape goating campaign by the New Believers, a sect of the Sleeping God's priesthood, against the Marked, those with special abilities to Heal, Find, Mend and See.
Enter Dhulyn Wolfshead, mercenary partner of Parno Lionsmane and a carefully hidden Seer. They have returned to Parno's homeland, where unknown to them, the priesthood is coming to greater power. Their job to escort Mar-eMar to the capital takes several unexpected turns involving kidnapping, assassination and mob violence.

***Meet Violette in store on Saturday September 8th at 2pm.***

By: Neil Gaiman
Now that the movie is out, and the reviews are floating around, I thought it would be nice to remind people that Stardust was a BOOK first, and not the other way around.
Following the journey of young Tristran Thorn, on his quest to bring back a fallen star for the girl he loves, Neil Gaiman spins a gorgeous tale of faerie magic and moonlight. Although magical and romantic, Stardust is also very terrifying and cold, but in a rather mischievous manner.
Seventeen year old Tristran, raised in the city of Wall, embarks on an innocent journey into the woods, into the Faerie realm, to find the one thing that will bring him love - a fallen star. With some curious help, he finds the Star, not realizing that this star - this girl - would bring him more than his Heart's Desire. And he is not the only one looking for her. Tristran and the Star must face a unicorn, a witch-queen, an old merchant woman, an heir-to-the-throne and each other to find the greatest prize of all quests - true love.
Neil Gaiman's wonderful prose captivates the reader with mystery and imagery that evokes the fairy tales of old. Stardust is hard to put down, and leaves you wanting more.
NOW, go see the movie.
- Kat

The Blade Itself
By: Joe Abercrombie
My only problem with this novel was that instead of using profanity to enhance the emotion of specific scenes, it was used everywhere, spoiling the effect it would otherwise have had. It was hard to picture the Gandalf figure, Bayaz, First of the Magi, employing casual curses. Then again, I'd also be hard pressed to imagine Gandalf using magic while naked and dripping from an interrupted bath. But Abercrombie makes you imagine all sorts of strange, yet oddly compelling things.
This book is great if you want a more realistic view of 'barbarian' life meets civilization. Here are 'heroes' whose arrows sometimes miss and who get injured during swordfights, outnumbered or not.
And if its realistic fight scenes fail to catch your interest, the characters can't. The three protagonists from the beginning are less than likeable and yet you find yourself liking them anyway.
There's Logan Ninefingers, a Named Man, for his fearsome deeds of the past, come form the barbarian North. Glokta, a crippled inquisitor, who doesn't get any pleasure from torturing people because, after being tortured for two years himself, he no longer gets any pleasure from anything. And Jezal, proud officer in the king's army and unhappily training for this year's fencing competition.
Brought together by the tidings of war and through the machinations of Bayaz, this book will leave you asking for more.
- Jessica Strider

By Stephenie Meyer
Our favourite ensemble of characters is back for a reappearance in Stephenie Meyer's latest instalment of her vampire series, Eclipse.
Isabella: Graduation draws ever closer and putting on a gown and cap are not the only things that Isabella Swan looks forward to -she also looks forward to the fruition of the promise that was made to her- to be made into a vampire.
Edward: He knows he's being selfish, but he wants Isabella by his side for an eternity, not only as an immortal being, but also as his wife. But will dangling the promise of transforming her into a vampire himself be enough to make her say yes instead of no?
Jacob: A werewolf who wants Isabella to choose humanity­ to choose him instead of Edward. And he will do anything in his power to convince her, even at the cost of his life.
And in the midst of it all, a new threat is approaching, memorizing Isabella's scent and slowly gathering in for the kill.
If you have not read this series yet, all I can say is: Why not? Don't let the fact that it is a teen book put you off it. Good writing is good writing and likeable characters are people we want to find out more about. Read the series already! Why delay the inevitable?

Coming in October Hardcover:
Air Apparent - Piers Anthony
God's Demon - Wayne Barlowe
Queen Ferris - S.C. Butler
A War of Gifts - Orson Scott Card
When all Seems Lost - William Dietz
Themepunks - Cory Doctorow
1634: The Bavarian Crisis - Eric Flint & Virginia Demarce
Patrimony - Alan Dean Foster
V: The Second Generation - Kenneth Johnson
Sword From Red Ice - J.V. Jones
Phoenix Unchained - Mercedes Lackey
Reserved for the Cat - Mercedes Lackey
A Companion to Wolves - Sarah Monette
Metatemporal Detective - Michael Moorcock
Fleet of Worlds - Larry Niven
Star Flight - Andre Norton
Year of the Grey Wolf - Andre Norton
Making Money - Terry Pratchett
Star Wars: Death Star - Michael Reaves
Star Trek: The Academy: Collision Course - William Shatner, Judith Reeves-Stevens & Garfield Reeves-Stevens
Halting State - Charles Stross
The Merchant's War - Charles Stross
One Day on Mars - Travis Taylor
Ha'penny - Jo Walton
The Third Lynx - Timothy Zahn

Trade Paperback:
Keeper's Child - Leslie Davis
End of the World Blues - Jon Courtnay Grimwood
Nova Swing - M. John Harrison
Rewired - James Patrick Kelly & John Kessel
Counting Heads - David Marusek
Star Trek: Sky's the Limit - Marco Palmieri
Devices & Desires - K.J. Parker
Not Flesh nor Feathers - Cherie Priest
Once Bitten, Twice Shy - Jennifer Rardin
War Machine - Andy Remic
Selling Out - Justina Robson
Voice of Crow - Jeri Smith-Ready

Mass Market:
School's Out - Scott Andrews
Stork Naked - Piers Anthony
Eternity - Greg Bear
Reiffen's Choice - S.C. Butler
Destiny's Forge - Paul Chafe
Dragon Lance: Protecting Palanthas - Douglas Clark
Forgotten Realms: Star deep - Bruce Cordell
Star Trek: Before Dishonor - Peter David
Spirit Gate - Kate Elliott
Trouble Magnet - Alan Dean Foster
Fate Fantastic - Martin Greenberg & Daniel Hoyt
Battlestar Galactica: Unity - Steven Harper
Dragon's Teeth - James Hetley
Aerie - Mercedes Lackey
Clone Alliance - Steven Kent
Dog Days - John Levitt
War Hammer: Manslayer - Nathan Long
Blade of Fortriu - Juliet Marillier
Odyssey - Jack McDevitt
Awakened Mage - Karen Miller
Soarer's Choice - L.E. Modesitt Jr.
Blood Engines - T.A. Pratt
Princess of Wands - John Ringo
Horizons - Mary Rosenblum
Android's Dream- John Scalzi
Kris Longknife Audacious - Mike Shepherd
Star Wars: True Colors - Karen Traviss
At All Costs - David Weber
Forgotten Realms: Sands of the Soul - Victoria Whitney-Robinson
Lord of the Fading Lands - C.L Wilson
Eberron: Rise of the 7th Moon - Rich Wulf

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