Sunday, September 30, 2007

Collected Stories Of Greg Bear - Greg Bear

A large collection from Bear. He talks about how he is not really too comfortable with producing anything particularly short. There are also some supernatural and the odd horror story included, as well, something with doesn't particularly seem to be his forte, going by the numbers.

A 3.38 average for this lot, if you just wanted the top stuff you could probably get Tangents instead, other than Hardfought, that is.

Anyway, this is a decent bunch, and that is about it.

Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Blood Music [SS] - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Sisters - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : A Martian Ricorso - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Schrödinger's Plague - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Heads - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Wind from a Burning Woman - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Venging - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Perihesperon - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Scattershot - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : A Plague of Conscience - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Always Never - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The White Horse Child - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Dead Run - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Petra - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Webster - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Through Road No Whither - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Tangents - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Visitation - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Richie by the Sea - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Sleepside Story - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Judgment Engine - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Fall of the House of Escher - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : The Way of All Ghosts A Myth from Thistledown - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : MDIO Ecosystems Increase Knowledge of DNA Languages (2215 C.E.) [Deep Ice and DNA Languages] - Greg Bear
Collected Stories of Greg Bear : Hardfought - Greg Bear


Microcolony kill failure transfer overrun.

4 out of 5


Designer defect death.

3.5 out of 5


First contact rapid overtaking.

2.5 out of 5


Coin toss experimental global philosophy pandemic probability.

3.5 out of 5


Scientology scummy scammer's skull storage shocker shattered.

4.5 out of 5


Floating megaboom backdown refusal.

3.5 out of 5


Singular hell.

3 out of 5


Sunny end.

3 out of 5


There's a bear in there, and a chair as well. Really, if you get hit by a probability disruptor enough times you might berry likely pick up anything, girly.

4 out of 5


Bloke not the messiah.

2.5 out of 5


Son story sins.

2.5 out of 5


Trucking hell, man.

3.5 out of 5


Gargoyle boys and girls.

3.5 out of 5


Dictionary definition not the same as the real thing.

3 out of 5


I see bad things for the SS.

3.5 out of 5


Music just adds that extra dimension.

4 out of 5


God-three finds trying to blow scientist minds more entertaining.

3.5 out of 5


No Sigmund, one sea-monster, one boy, but combined.

2.5 out of 5


Whore pruning promotes renewal.

3.5 out of 5


Large scale libraries need some old fashioned teaching.

3.5 out of 5


Blame Wodewick, virtually.

3.5 out of 5


Had enough.

3 out of 5


Big ice melt mutant discovery may not be uplifting.

3.5 out of 5


Spacehawk history problems.

4 out of 5





3.5 out of 5

Twilight Beach - Terry Dowling

While not as consistently brilliant or startlingly confrontational as the first two books, Rynosseros and Blue Tyson (who both get adjusted scores over 5, while this one is is merely 4.82), it is still one extremely good collection.

A lot of solo focused journeying for Tom, while travelling physically it gets rather introspective, as he tries to sort out what is going on in his head, and what he actually is, and why he has some Clever Man abilities. There is also one tangential story that is only ordinary, a first for this series.

Things heat up at the end of the book with an attack on a Coloured Captain, and on Rynosseros as Tom's enemies realise he may know more than they want him to.


Twilight Beach : Shatterwrack at Breaklight - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : The Babel Ships - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : Sailors Along the Soul - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : Roadsong - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : Larrikin Wind - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : Nights at Totem Rule - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : The Final Voyage of Captain Gelise - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : The Leopard - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : A Whisper from a Voice at the Vanishing Point - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : The Green Captain's Tale - Terry Dowling
Twilight Beach : Ship's Eye - Terry Dowling




A holoform of a woman entrances Tom into spending cash, until he works out what is really going on.

5 out of 5


Tom looks for simulation and psychological help to find out what the 'Ship' image is.

4.5 out of 5


Tom looks for simulation and psychological help to find out what the 'Ship' image is.

4.5 out of 5


Tom and crew take a woman out looking for a real ship at the heart of a ghostly mirage.

3.5 out of 5


Tom is unsuspectingly in the middle of a plot to get an Ab'O noblewoman to a meeting with pirates.

4 out of 5


Jon, an early crewman of Tom's is on leave for an opera festival, where he meets the diva.

3 out of 5


Tom goes to Totem Rule to try and find out more about his dreams.

3.5 out of 5


An outcast Captain takes Tom to meet the belltree Lone Star Stone.

4 out of 5


The story of Tom's early days out of the Madhouse, and his meeting with Scarbo, with more of Lone Star Stone.

4.5 out of 5


Tom travels to Inlansay and gets ambiguous words from a belltree.

3.5 out of 5



The Blue Captain picks up the Green Captain on the way to Pentecost, and the latter borrows Tom's jacket, which leads to a mistaken mental attack.

4 out of 5


A surprise communication from Rynosseros leaves Tom looking for help, worried about his ship. This leads him into danger and a secret meeting, but luckily he has allies with a serious plan for those who lie in wait.

5 out of 5





5 out of 5

Tangents - Greg Bear

An earlier story collection, and he writers an introduction talking about the difference between forward looking and 'past=comforted' pepole in America, relating that to science fiction.

A pretty good bunch of stories, averaging 3.44.

Tangents : Blood Music [SS] - Greg Bear
Tangents : Sleepside Story - Greg Bear
Tangents : Webster - Greg Bear
Tangents : A Martian Ricorso - Greg Bear
Tangents : Dead Run - Greg Bear
Tangents : Schrödinger's Plague - Greg Bear
Tangents : Through Road No Whither - Greg Bear
Tangents : Tangents - Greg Bear
Tangents : Sisters - Greg Bear


Microcolony kill failure transfer overrun.

4 out of 5


Whore pruning promotes renewal.

3.5 out of 5


Dictionary definition not the same as the real thing.

3 out of 5


First contact rapid overtaking.

2.5 out of 5


Trucking hell, man.

3.5 out of 5


Coin toss experimental global philosophy pandemic probability.

3.5 out of 5


I see bad things for the SS.

3.5 out of 5


Music just adds that extra dimension.

4 out of 5


Designer defect death.

3.5 out of 5





4 out of 5

In His Sights - Jeffrey Thomas

The deathly smell of war can leave you feeling Blue.


4 out of 5

Hardfought - Greg Bear

Spacehawk history problems.


4 out of 5

MDIO Ecosystems Increase Knowledge of DNA Languages - Greg Bear

Big ice melt mutant discovery may not be uplifting.


3.5 out of 5

The Fall Of the House of Escher - Greg Bear

Blame Wodewick, virtually.


3.5 out of 5

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Sleepside Story - Greg Bear

Whore pruning promotes renewal.


3.5 out of 5

The Visitation - Greg Bear

God-three finds trying to blow scientist minds more entertaining.


3.5 out of 5

Tangents - Greg Bear

Music just adds that extra dimension.


4 out of 5

The Green Captain's Tale - Terry Dowling

The Blue Captain picks up the Green Captain on the way to Pentecost, and the latter borrows Tom's jacket, which leads to a mistaken mental attack.


4 out of 5

Ten Great Mysteries - Edgar Allan Poe

http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2147
http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2148
http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2149
http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2150
http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2150

The Ten Great Mysteries are :

Ten Great Mysteries : The Murders in the Rue Morgue - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : The Purloined Letter - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : The Tell-Tale Heart - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : The Pit and the Pendulum - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : A Descent Into the Maelstrom - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : A Tale of the Ragged Mountains - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : The Black Cat - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : Thou Art the Man - Edgar Allan Poe
Ten Great Mysteries : Metzengerstein - Edgar Allan Poe


In other words, a fine collection, leading off with an all time classic. However, they are burdened with some generally bad to terrible story introductions by Groff Conklin, although the first one is ok.


Dupin deduces something orange.

4 out of 5


Blackmail deductions documented.

4 out of 5


Mad noise.

3.5 out of 5


Sleep death speech liquidity.

4 out of 5


End choices.

4.5 out of 5


Sea storm spinning around survival.

3.5 out of 5


City vision.

3 out of 5


Feline horror results.

3 out of 5


Bullet proof.

2.5 out of 5


Beastly burden.

3.5 out of 5




4 out of 5

Alfred Hitchcock's Daring Detectives - Alfred Hitchcock

A collection of detective stories designed for young readers, includes famous types like Poirot.

Daring Detectives : The Day the Children Vanished - Hugh Pentecost
Daring Detectives : Through A Dead Man's Eye - Cornell Woolrich
Daring Detectives : The Disappearance of Mr Davenhelm - Agatha Christie
Daring Detectives : The Grave Grass Quivers - MacKinley Cantor
Daring Detectives : Adventure of the Grice Paterson Curse - August Derleth
Daring Detectives : The Adventure of the Seven Black Cats - Ellery Queen
Daring Detectives : The Footprint In the Sky - John Dickson Carr

Cowboy kidnap showdown.

3.5 out of 5


House investigation bits.

3 out of 5


Betting on the gray matter.

3.5 out of 5


Digging around.

2.5 out of 5


Creepering around.

3 out of 5


Harry Potter is a murderer.

3 out of 5


Hedge underfoot.

3.5 out of 5




3 out of 5

The Footprint In the Sky - John Dickson Carr

Hedge underfoot.


3.5 out of 5

The Adventure of the Seven Black Cats - Ellery Queen

Harry Potter is a murderer.


3 out of 5

Adventure of the Grice-Paterson Curse - August Derleth

Creepering around.


3 out of 5

The Grave Grass Quivers - MacKinlay Kantor

Digging around.


2.5 out of 5

The Disappearance of Mr Davenheim - Agatha Christie

Betting on the gray matter.


3.5 out of 5

Through A Dead Man's Eye - Cornell Woolrich

House investigation bits.


3 out of 5

The Day the Children Died - Hugh Pentecost

Cowboy kidnap showdown.


3.5 out of 5

Through Road No Whither - Greg Bear

I see bad things for the SS.


3.5 out of 5

Dead Run - Greg Bear

Trucking hell, man.


3.5 out of 5

Scattershot - Greg Bear

There's a bear in there, and a chair as well. Really, if you get hit by a probability disruptor enough times you might berry likely pick up anything, girly.


4 out of 5

Heads - Greg Bear

Scientology scummy scammer's skull storage shocker shattered.


4.5 out of 5

Perihesperon - Greg Bear

Sunny end.


3.5 out of 5

Friday, September 28, 2007

Futures Imperfect - Connie Willis

A collection of short books I didn't find very remarkable. If you get a
cheap bookclub edition or used, that is not so bad though. Basically, two novellas and a novel, from what I can see, the last, Bellwether, being considerably longer.

Her breezy style doesn't make any of it a chore, generally.

Futures Imperfect : Uncharted Territory - Connie Willis
Futures Imperfect : Remake - Connie Willis
Futures Imperfect : Bellwether - Connie Willis


Exploring courtship rituals.

3 out of 5


No getting real for movies, let alone musicals.

3.5 out of 5


Trend analysis for the sheepish.


3.5 out of 5





3.5 out of 5

Bellwether - Connie Willis

Trend analysis for the sheepish.


3.5 out of 5

Cyber Age Adventures - Frank Fradella

Bad.


That would about sum this off. The majority of the writing in this book is not competent, let alone publishable. That is even publishable in a game supplement sort of sense. The names of the guilty are not on each story, but I suspect one of the writers may be more competent than the rest.

The ideas or plots for the stories are generally decent enough, barring the odd complete clone, and half a bonus point for the stuff at the back. This includes some newspaper report mockups, and some actual reports of real-life heroism, which was a nice touch.

Cyber Age Adventures : 01 The Swan - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 02 Run For Your Life - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 03 Crucible - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 04 Preventive Measures - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 05 Mother and Child Reunion - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 06 Best Served Cold - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 07 Arachnid - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 08 The Minuteman's Final Hour - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 09 Survival Instinct - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 10 Jade Tiger - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 11 Jade Tiger The Continuing Adventures - Frank Fradella
Cyber Age Adventures : 12 Hell in August - Frank Fradella


Said hero takes down a rifleman.

2 out of 5


Fast femme fatale issues.

3.5 out of 5


Super powered conflict here.

There are three editors/authors listed on this book. If they are taking it in turns to write stories here it wouldn't surprise me. However, it looks like only one of them can write at all, so far, if that is the case.

Seeing it doesn't list who is who, I just picked the first one to use.

1 out of 5



Two old superhumans try to enforce their no superheroes allowed mandate on literally, Newcomer.

2 out of 5


A hero that can predict the future saves a city by stopping a superstrong Behemoth.

2 out of 5


Permafrost, although young, was the wrong target for a rapist.

2.5 out of 5


An alien flees to Earth, because he doesn't have enough arms. Not enough to be called Arachnid, either. Super-linguists can't count.

2.5 out of 5


Litigation crazy USA catches up with very aging very first hero.

3 out of 5


A vampire decides to lend a hand with the good guys, but eventually she is found out.

2.5 out of 5


Mystical east meets stinky city west.

2.5 out of 5


Trying to banish someone to the underworld won't work if they have it in them already.

2.5 out of 5





1 out of 5

Hell In August - Frank Fradella

Trying to banish someone to the underworld won't work if they have it in them already.


2.5 out of 5

Fast Forward 1 - Lou Anders

It is pretty cool to new a good old fashioned )in series terms at least, not in contest) sf anthology series.

The book starts well with a good introduction by Anders as to why he wants to do it, and some of his inspirations, including a quote from Pohl.

There are also a couple of poems included for those that like them.

The stories are good, the average rating being 3.53, which is a bit over what you hope for from a book, and is rather well done in a new original project as opposed to some sort of reprint.

The standout is Di Filippo's Wikiworld, but Pride and Kage Baker's Plotters and Shooters were also excellent.

In fact, only called three of these '3' or average, so it is a book that is well worth looking at.

The one quibble I would have is the format, being the considerably more expensive trade paperback compared to the recently seen competitor the Solaris Book of New Science Fiction, being the good old paperback. I wonder if this will affect the success of either.

Wouldn't mind seeing an electronic version for easier obtainability, either.

Otherwise, I definitely recommend having a look. In fact, at the moment I would suggest that anything Pyr puts out is worth a look at, presuming you like fantasy as well, of course.

A fine opening effort, I was pleasantly surprised.


Fast Forward 1 : YFL-500 - Robert Charles Wilson
Fast Forward 1 : The Girl Hero's Mirror Says He's Not the One - Justina Robson
Fast Forward 1 : Small Offerings - Paolo Bacigalupi
Fast Forward 1 : They Came From the Future - Robyn Hitchcock
Fast Forward 1 : Plotters and Shooters - Kage Baker
Fast Forward 1 : Aristotle OS - Tony Ballantyne
Fast Forward 1 : The Something-Dreaming Game [SS] - Elizabeth Bear
Fast Forward 1 : No More Stories - Stephen Baxter
Fast Forward 1 : Time of the Snake - A.M. Dellamonica
Fast Forward 1 : The Terror Bard - Larry Niven and Brenda Cooper
Fast Forward 1 : p dolce - Louise Marley
Fast Forward 1 : Jesus Christ Reanimator - Ken MacLeod
Fast Forward 1 : Solomon's Choice - Mike Resnick and Nancy Kress
Fast Forward 1 : Sanjeev and Robotwallah - Ian McDonald
Fast Forward 1 : A Smaller Government - Pamela Sargent
Fast Forward 1 : Pride - Mary A. Turzillo
Fast Forward 1 : I Caught Intelligence - Robyn Hitchcock
Fast Forward 1 : Settlements - George Zebrowski
Fast Forward 1 : The Hour of the Sheep - Gene Wolfe
Fast Forward 1 : Sideways from Now - John Meaney
Fast Forward 1 : Wikiworld - Paul Di Filippo



Dream deal.

3.5 out of 5


Wild for not to hold.

3.5 out of 5


Prenatal drug dose.

4 out of 5


Deathlok defense defeat predicted, Avenger!

4.5 out of 5


Philosophy of upgrades is of arguable effectiveness.

3 out of 5


Autoerotic asphyxiation communicates alien information preservation.

4 out of 5


Interbreeding expansion remnant conversation.

3.5 out of 5


Tinker, tailor, soldier, squid.

4 out of 5


Planet pool is tough on the artificial eight ball.

3 out of 5


Past master possession discovery preemption.

3.5 out of 5


Second coming, blogging, shooting.

3 out of 5


Matriarchal memory madness or many mutant men? Stealing space shuttle solution at least requires no sea severing.

3.5 out of 5


Battletech comes and goes, but pizza always popular.

4 out of 5


Peewee politics could be smooshed.

3.5 out of 5


Sabretoothed green-eyed monster.

4.5 out of 5


Future or past, advice not taken well by greedy power mongers.

3.5 out of 5


Trust the lightsabre Luke, not the wench.

3.5 out of 5


A quantum of solace.

3.5 out of 5


Dickieworld, with groups the Coodabeens could definitely love. Trade cybernetwarstylin'.

4.5 out of 5





4 out of 5

The Venging - Greg Bear

Singular hell.


3 out of 5

The Wind From A Burning Woman - Greg Bear

Floating megaboom backdown refusal.


3.5 out of 5

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Jade Tiger The Continuing Adventures - Frank Fradella

Mystical east meets stinky city west.


2.5 out of 5

Schrodinger's Plague - Greg Bear

Coin toss experimental global philosophy pandemic probability.


3.5 out of 5

A Martian Ricorso - Greg Bear

First contact rapid overtaking.


2.5 out of 5

Remake - Connie Willis

No getting real for movies, let alone musicals.


3.5 out of 5

Uncharted Territory - Connie Willis

Exploring courtship rituals.


3 out of 5

Sideways From Now - John Meaney

A quantum of solace.


3.5 out of 5

The Hour Of the Sheep - Gene Wolfe

Trust the lightsabre Luke, not the wench.


3.5 out of 5

Settlements - George Zebrowski

Future or past, advice not taken well by greedy power mongers.


3.5 out of 5

A Smaller Government - Pamela Sargent

Peewee politics could be smooshed.


3.5 out of 5

Sanjeev and Robotwallah - Ian McDonald

Battletech comes and goes, but pizza always popular.


4 out of 5

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Solomon's Choice - Mike Resnick and Nancy Kress

Matriarchal memory madness or many mutant men? Stealing space shuttle solution at least requires no sea severing.


3.5 out of 5

P Dolce - Louise Marley

Past master possession discovery preemption.


3.5 out of 5

The Terror Bard - Larry Niven and Brenda Cooper

Planet pool is tough on the artificial eight ball.


3 out of 5

Time Of the Snake - A. M. Dellamonica

Tinker, tailor, soldier, squid.


4 out of 5

No More Stories - Stephen Baxter

Interbreeding expansion remnant conversation.


3.5 out of 5

A Whisper From A Voice At the Vanishing Point - Terry Dowling

Tom travels to Inlansay and gets ambiguous words from a belltree.


3.5 out of 5

Plotters and Shooters - Kage Baker

Deathlok defense defeat predicted, Avenger!


4.5 out of 5

Small Offerings - Paolo Bacigalupi

Prenatal drug dose.


4 out of 5

The Girl Hero's Mirror Says He's Not The One - Justina Robson

Wild for not to hold.


3.5 out of 5

YFL-500 - Robert Charles Wilson

Dream deal.


3.5 out of 5

Nightflyers - George R. R. Martin

Scary spaceship slaughter single.


4 out of 5

The Wizards of Odd - Peter Haining

This anthology, when the editor means fantasy, he is speaking rather broadly, as in he means 'science fiction and fantasy', as quite a bit of the former in this collection. Presumably the title is to tie in with Pratchett and the Pratchett cover. However, Asimov, Clarke and Vonnegut are in this book as well, so a bit hard to disguise them.

It is divided into three sections, the middle one being a 'heroic fantasy' section, and by that he generally means here anything but horror type fantasy, from Tolkien to Leiber, and the last as 'Space Opera', when it isn't really either. So a whole bunch of creative mislabelling going on for whatever reason.

Wizards of Odd : Theatre of Cruelty - Terry Pratchett
Wizards of Odd : How Nuth Would Have Practised His Art upon the Gnoles - Lord Dunsany
Wizards of Odd : Hell Hath No Fury - John Collier
Wizards of Odd : The Twonky - Henry Kuttner
Wizards of Odd : A Great Deal of Power - Eric Frank Russell
Wizards of Odd : Doodad - Ray Bradbury
Wizards of Odd : Not By Its Cover - Philip K. Dick
Wizards of Odd : The Rule of Names - Ursula K. Le Guin
Wizards of Odd : Mythological Beast - Stephen Donaldson
Wizards of Odd : The Adventure of the Snowing Globe - F. Anstey
Wizards of Odd : Affairs in Poictesme - James Branch Cabell
Wizards of Odd : The Ring of Hans Carvel - Fredric Brown
Wizards of Odd : The Bait - Fritz Leiber
Wizards of Odd : A Good Knight's Work - Robert Bloch
Wizards of Odd : Poor Little Warrior - Brian W. Aldiss
Wizards of Odd : The Odd Old Bird - Avram Davidson
Wizards of Odd : Young Zaphod Plays It Safe - Douglas Adams
Wizards of Odd : The Wild Asses of the Devil - H. G. Wells
Wizards of Odd : Ministering Angels - C. S. Lewis
Wizards of Odd : The Gnurrs Come from the Voodvork Out - Reginald Bretnor
Wizards of Odd : Captain Wyxtpthll's Flying Saucer - Arthur C. Clarke
Wizards of Odd : Playboy and the Slime God - Isaac Asimov
Wizards of Odd : There's a Wolf in My Time Machine - Larry Niven
Wizards of Odd : 2 B R 0 2 B - Kurt VonnegutJr.

Death witness.

3.5 out of 5


Jewellery not worth it.

3 out of 5


Angels, devils, all dodgy mate.

2.5 out of 5


Radio rule.

3.5 out of 5


Argumentative overload.

3.5 out of 5


Hey, what does this thingumabob do?

4 out of 5


Outside judging inside, for once.

4 out of 5


What do you call a dragon? Well, if it isn't the right thing, it isn't like you will have to worry about it for long.

4 out of 5


Unicorn revival.

3 out of 5


Dragon, just a big rat?

3 out of 5


Conflict not actually amusing.

3 out of 5


Better than a piercing, at least.

3.5 out of 5


Diamonds, short chick and tall fiends.

4 out of 5


Need protection from quests.

4 out of 5


He's got the dino crabs.

3.5 out of 5


Archaeopteryx, more like chicken, or lizard?

3.5 out of 5


Presidential personality accident.

4 out of 5


Demon donkey drive is long.

3 out of 5


Space escort barrel scraping.

2.5 out of 5


Horsing around in aid of nudity.

4 out of 5


Interstellar contact tricky.

3.5 out of 5


Flying saucer guys not breast men.

4 out of 5


Werewolf girl following time.

3 out of 5


One in, one out. Three at a time sometimes handy.

3.5 out of 5





3.5 out of 5

Great Horror Stories - Anonymous Anonymous

Great Horror Stories in this case is a bit of a misnomer. According to the inside, this was first published in 1936 as the Great Book of Thrillers.

So, there are quite a few standard mystery stories, a spy story, and a SF story (which is of the disaster type though).

Anyone looking for gutwrenching horror tales should definitely look elsewhere.

Great Horror Stories : H2 Etc. - A.J. Alan
Great Horror Stories : The Smell in the Library - Michael Arlen
Great Horror Stories : The Man in the Bell - W.E. Aytoun
Great Horror Stories : The Mysterious Mansion - Honoré de Balzac
Great Horror Stories : The Folding Doors - Marjorie Bowen
Great Horror Stories : The Lady of Glenwith Grange - Wilkie Collins
Great Horror Stories : The New Sun - J.S. Fletcher
Great Horror Stories : Hot Water - Val Gielgud
Great Horror Stories : The Island - L.P. Hartley
Great Horror Stories : Edward Randolph's Portrait - Nathaniel Hawthorne
Great Horror Stories : The Spectre Bridegroom - Washington Irving
Great Horror Stories : The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar - Edgar Allan Poe
Great Horror Stories : The Tarn - Hugh Walpole
Great Horror Stories : The Resurrectionist - Samuel Warren
Great Horror Stories : The Blue Room - Prosper Mérimée
Great Horror Stories : The Cafe of Terror - E. Phillips Oppenheim
Great Horror Stories : The Avenging Chance - Anthony Berkeley
Great Horror Stories : A Lesson in Crime - G.D.H. and M. Cole
Great Horror Stories : Mr Pemberton's Commission - Freeman Wills Crofts
Great Horror Stories : Who Killed Castelvetri? - Gilbert Frankau
Great Horror Stories : The Aluminium Dagger - R. Austin Freeman
Great Horror Stories : The Gylston Slander - Herbert Jenkins
Great Horror Stories : Arsene Lupin in Prison - Maurice Leblanc
Great Horror Stories : The Fenchurch Street Mystery - Baroness Orczy
Great Horror Stories : Peacock House - Eden Phillpotts
Great Horror Stories : The Vanishing Diamond - John Rhode
Great Horror Stories : Staley Fleming's Hallucination - Ambrose Bierce
Great Horror Stories : The Italian's Story - Catherine Crowe
Great Horror Stories : The Ghost of Dorothy Dingley - Daniel Defoe
Great Horror Stories : To Be Taken With a Grain of Salt - Charles Dickens
Great Horror Stories : The Phantom Coach - Amelia B. Edwards
Great Horror Stories : Madam Crowl's Ghost - Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Great Horror Stories : Black Coffee - Jeffery Farnol
Great Horror Stories : The Black Ferry - John Galt
Great Horror Stories : Mary Burnet - James Hogg
Great Horror Stories : The Three Sisters - W.W. Jacobs
Great Horror Stories : The Doctor's Ghost - Norman MacLeod
Great Horror Stories : Mr. Kempe - Walter De La Mare
Great Horror Stories : The Tapestried Chamber - Sir Walter Scott
Great Horror Stories : The Frontier Guards - H. Russell Wakefield
Great Horror Stories : The Red Room - H.G. Wells
Great Horror Stories : The Sphinx Without a Secret - Oscar Wilde
Great Horror Stories : The Gardener - E.F. Benson
Great Horror Stories : A Spanish Ghost Story - Anonymous
Great Horror Stories : The Dreamland Bridge - Theophile Gautier
Great Horror Stories : The Dilemma of Phadrig - Gerald Griffin

It's a gas.

2.5 out of 5


Some almost Cluedo action.

2.5 out of 5


Bong terror.

2.5 out of 5


Walled in, can't change your mind now.

3 out of 5


Bloody aristocrats.

3.5 out of 5


Dead relatives.

2.5 out of 5


Can only weather one.

3.5 out of 5


Snooping sheila's spyicide discovery.

3 out of 5


Possibly still there.

3 out of 5


Devil picture.

3.5 out of 5


Ghost ruse wooing.

3.5 out of 5


Sleep death speech liquidity.

4 out of 5


Pushed in overflow comeback.

4 out of 5


Graverobbing, only the devil can make me do it.

3.5 out of 5


Bloody coloured rooms.

3 out of 5


Family killings.

3 out of 5


Deadly chocolates.

3 out of 5


Writer murder.

2.5 out of 5


Necklace needed.

3 out of 5


Stray gun.

3 out of 5


Knife shot, works out Dr. Thorndyke.

4 out of 5


Malcolm Sage's writing experience is the key.

3.5 out of 5

The master villain details to Baron Satan how he will rob him, even though he is in the slammer.

4 out of 5


The Old Man In the Corner works out the identity switcheroo.

3 out of 5


Dodgy godfather.

2.5 out of 5


Jewellery surprise.

2.5 out of 5


Ghost dog death.

3.5 out of 5


Exile job ghost.

3 out of 5


Old spook.

2 out of 5


Pre-judged murderer.

3 out of 5


Any transport will do if the weather is bad enough.

4 out of 5


Uglier dead or alive, very hard to tell. So is the dead or alive bit.

3.5 out of 5


Isis mummy expiration.

4 out of 5


Revelation means dead.

2.5 out of 5


Tryst death repeat woman.

3.5 out of 5


Eldest will guide.

4 out of 5


Spook fishing.

3.5 out of 5


Strange eye bloke.

2.5 out of 5


General hag horror.

3.5 out of 5


Rental death.

3.5 out of 5


Fear place.

2 out of 5


Mystery pose.

3.5 out of 5


Autoindication danger.

3.5 out of 5


Father visit.

2.5 out of 5


Priest has the horn, not supposed to generally, even if she is dead.

2.5 out of 5


Dead wife's back, the cow.

3 out of 5




2.5 out of 5

Playboy and the Slime God - Isaac Asimov

Flying saucer guys not breast men.


4 out of 5

Captain Wyxtpthll's Flying Saucer - Arthur C. Clarke

Interstellar contact tricky.


3.5 out of 5

The Gnurrs Come From the Voodvork Out - Reginald Bretnor

Horsing around in aid of nudity.


4 out of 5

Ministering Angels - C. S. Lewis

Space escort barrel scraping.


2.5 out of 5

Young Zaphod Plays It Safe - Douglas Adams

Presidential personality accident.


4 out of 5

The Odd Old Bird - Avram Davidson

Archaeopteryx, more like chicken, or lizard?


3.5 out of 5

Poor Little Warrior - Brian Aldiss

He's got the dino crabs.


3.5 out of 5

A Good Knight's Work - Robert Bloch

Need protection from quests.


4 out of 5

The Ring Of Hans Carvel - Fredric Brown

Better than a piercing, at least.


3.5 out of 5

The Adventure of the Snowing Globe - F. Anstey

Dragon, just a big rat?


3 out of 5

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Jade Tiger - Frank Fradella

More than a startling resemblance to all things Iron Fist here.


3 out of 5

The Rule Of Names - Ursula K. Le Guin

What do you call a dragon? Well, if it isn't the right thing, it isn't like you will have to worry about it for long.


4 out of 5

Not By Its Cover - Philip K. Dick

Outside judging inside, for once.


4 out of 5

Doodad - Ray Bradbury

Hey, what does this thingumabob do?


4 out of 5

A Great Deal Of Power - Eric Frank Russell

Argumentative overload.


3.5 out of 5

Hell Hath No Fury - John Collier

Angels, devils, all dodgy mate.


2.5 out of 5

River Of Gods - Ian McDonald

Aeai life cycle.


I have a Merlinesque Once and Future McDonald thing going on it seems, going backward through his work.

I just recently read Brasyl, which I think is superior to this book.

River of Gods is still a good book, however, and possibly as India is a bit more familiar that the setting wasn't as interesting.

Whereas the former had three story strands going, although in different periods of history, River of Gods has around triple that, and all at the same time, which can leave you feeling that there isn't necessarily much point to some of them.

Basically, AI above a certain level of capability have been banned, and hounded out of most countries, and have taken refuge in India.

Via military, economic and political manipulation they are trying to keep themselves alive. However, the major focus is on the people that are the main players in this, a corporation, some researchers and the Indian prime minister, and a few more minor characters that perhaps got a little much 'stage time' and made this longer than it needed to be.

Americans have discovered an object in space older than the solar system, and an Indian corporation appears to have developed early zero point energy.

This all eventually ties together rather abruptly.

Still, definitely worth reading, and McDonald is top class.


4 out of 5

A Spanish Ghost Story - Anonymous Anonymous

Father visit.


2.5 out of 5

The Dilemma Of Phadrig - Gerald Griffin

Dead wife's back, the cow.


3 out of 5

Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Minuteman's Final Hour - Frank Fradella

Litigation crazy USA catches up with very aging very first hero.


3 out of 5

Arachnid - Frank Fradella

An alien flees to Earth, because he doesn't have enough arms. Not enough to be called Arachnid, either. Super-linguists can't count.


2.5 out of 5

Hot Water - Val Gielgud

Snooping sheila's spyicide discovery.


3 out of 5

Young Monsters - Martin H. Greenberg and Isaac Asimov and Charles G. Waugh

Part of a series of 'Young' anthologies, aimed at a more youthful bunch and as such often featuring kids, even though written by adult writers. This has a bit of a horror/supernatural bent, in general.

Young Monsters : Homecoming - Ray Bradbury
Young Monsters : Good-by Miss Patterson - Phyllis MacLennan
Young Monsters : Disturb Not My Slumbering Fair - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro
Young Monsters : The Wheelbarrow Boy - Richard Parker
Young Monsters : The Cabbage Patch - Theodore R. Cogswell
Young Monsters : The Thing Waiting Outside - Barbara Williamson
Young Monsters : Red as Blood - Tanith Lee
Young Monsters : Gabriel-Ernest - Saki
Young Monsters : Fritzchen - Charles Beaumont
Young Monsters : The Young One - Jerome Bixby
Young Monsters : Optical Illusion - Mack Reynolds
Young Monsters : Idiot's Crusade - Clifford D. Simak
Young Monsters : One for the Road - Stephen King
Young Monsters : Angelica - Jane Yolen


I want to feel the wind beneath my wings. Or I'll cry.

3.5 out of 5


Take that you old bat.

3.5 out of 5


Morgue ghoul snacks.

4 out of 5


Bad spell of behaviour.

2.5 out of 5


Fatherhood rather unpleasant.

2.5 out of 5


You ban reading, don't blame us if you are eaten by monsters, stupid parents.

3 out of 5


Witch Queen reflection.

3 out of 5


Werewolf boy recruit.

3.5 out of 5


Monster boy.

2.5 out of 5


Werewolf family visit.

3 out of 5


A gloating homo superior doesn't notice his use of mental power is being attempted on someone who is blind.

3.5 out of 5


Not the best bodysnatch ever chosen.

3.5 out of 5


What sort of people go to 'Salem's Lot? Not smart ones, that is for sure.

4 out of 5


Hitler angel a lot to answer for.

2.5 out of 5




3 out of 5

The Mammoth Book of Future Cops - Maxim Jakubowski and M. Christian

Basically what it says, so if you are a fan of the detective or crime story and are interested in a bit of science fiction to go along with that, then this anthology would serve you well, as plenty of stories in this book told with that style, as well as the odd straight short more standard sf story.

Quite well done, carrying a 3.47 average throughout.

Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Celebrate the Bullet - Richard Paul Russo
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Glass Earth Inc. - Stephen Baxter
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Footprint on Nowhere Beach - Conrad Williams
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : The Shape of Murder - Ian Watson
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : The Incorporated - John Shirley
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Seiza - Steven Schwartz
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Axl Against The Immortals - Jon Courtenay-Grimwood
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Offenders - Mat Coward
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Violation - William F. Nolan
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Needle Taste - M. Christian
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : An End to Hunger - China Miéville
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : A Scanner Darkly [SS] - Philip K. Dick
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : The Mojave Two-Step - Norman Partridge
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Blood Sisters - Joe Haldeman
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Heartache - Stuart Young
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Mindstalker - Martin Edwards
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Thighs - Melanie Fogel
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : The Uncertainty Principle - John Moralee
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Prison Dreams - Paul McAuley
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Three Bananas - Larry Tritten
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : You Never Know - Carol Anne Davis
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Play Nice - J. E. Ashley
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Me and My Shadow - Mike Resnick
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Gone Bush - Chris Amies
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Digital Honey - Liz Evans
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Blankie - Paul Di Filippo
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : No Better Than Anyone Else - Molly Brown
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : So Napoleon Almost Slept Here Right? - O'Neil De Noux
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Professionals - Keith Brooke
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Fishing - Jay Caselberg
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : In Silver A - Cecilia Tan
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Sleep That Burns - Jerry Sykes
Mammoth Book of Future Cops : Ravens - Stephen Dedman


Sheltered violence distribution.

4 out of 5


Advertising unreality dysfunction.

3.5 out of 5


Murder supply chip replay.

3 out of 5


Poirot ship instantiation investigation shifts.

3 out of 5


Corporate disinformation system edit.

4 out of 5


Net run relations.

2.5 out of 5


Whore transformation raid.

3.5 out of 5


Joke police.

3.5 out of 5


Traffic policing is killer.

4 out of 5


Revenge removal.

2.5 out of 5


Philanthropic satire unappreciated.

3.5 out of 5


Drug scramble.

4 out of 5


Robot slot slayer.

3.5 out of 5


Original courtesan clone kill refusal freedom association.

3.5 out of 5


Sexually transmitted assassination.

4.5 out of 5


Psychological murder skills.

3.5 out of 5


Hardbody trade.

3 out of 5


Paedophile rejuve extreme.

3.5 out of 5


Doll triage run.

3.5 out of 5


Extinct fruit orgy revenge.

3.5 out of 5


Frozen killer blowup.

3 out of 5


Life stealing payback hit.

3 out of 5


I'm personality driven, just like the old days, killer.

3.5 out of 5


Correspondence disposal.

3 out of 5


Inorganic assistance unappreciated can leave you out in the cold.

4 out of 5


Child minder's overly close attention gives spiteful big baby up.

4 out of 5


Ex-backup singer cop's lack of backup mistake.

3.5 out of 5


Cold case crim's conversion not quite clever enough.

4 out of 5


Love addiction duo's deal.

3.5 out of 5


Relocation deal a dud.

3 out of 5


Fringes or elsewhere preferred to America.

3 out of 5


Finally putting the heart of the matter on ice.

3.5 out of 5


Suicide isn't painless, says the forecast.

4 out of 5




4 out of 5

The Man In the Belll - W. E. Aytoun

Bong terror.


3 out of 5

The Smell In the Library - Michael Arlen

Some almost Cluedo action.


2.5 out of 5

Crash Deluxe - Marianne de Pierres

Violent escort media revolution attempt.


The final book of this Parrish Pleish series is just as good as the other, and very fast paced.

Parrish, in control of the local situation mostly, decides something has to be done about Viva City. Unfortunately for her, this involves going undercover as a high class call girl, something for which she is somewhat unsuited, you could say.

She has to get technological help, work out what to do about the parasite alien species, and try to bring down what may or may not be an AI that helps the three powerful media barons that run the place control information.

Not an easy task, and some of the usual suspects are to again be found.

Frenetic punctuated by occasional lust is how you could describe the tone.



4 out of 5

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Angelica - Jane Yolen

Hitler angel a lot to answer for.


2.5 out of 5

One For the Road - Stephen King

What sort of people go to 'Salem's Lot? Not smart ones, that is for sure.


4 out of 5

Idiot's Crusade - Clifford D. Simak

Not the best bodysnatch ever chosen.


3.5 out of 5

Optical Illusion - Mack Reynolds

A gloating homo superior doesn't notice his use of mental power is being attempted on someone who is blind.


3.5 out of 5

The Young One - Jerome Bixby

Werewolf family visit.


3 out of 5

Fritzchen - Charles Beaumont

Monster boy.


2.5 out of 5

The Thing Waiting Outside - Barbara Williamson

You ban reading, don't blame us if you are eaten by monsters, stupid parents.


3 out of 5

The Cabbage Patch - Theodore R. Cogswell

Fatherhood rather unpleasant.


2.5 out of 5

The Wheelbarrow Boy - Richard Parker

Bad spell of behaviour.


2.5 out of 5

Disturb Not My Slumbering Fair - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

Morgue ghoul snacks.


4 out of 5

Ravens - Stephen Dedman

Suicide isn't painless, says the forecast.


4 out of 5

Sleep That Burns - Jerry Sykes

Finally putting the heart of the matter on ice.


3.5 out of 5

In Silver A - Cecilia Tan

Fringes or elsewhere preferred to America.


3 out of 5

Fishing - Jay Caselberg

Relocation deal a dud.


3 out of 5

So Napoleon Almost Slept here Right - O'Neil De Noux

Cold case crim's conversion not quite clever enough.


4 out of 5

No Better Than Anyone Else - Molly Brown

Ex-backup singer cop's lack of backup mistake.


3.5 out of 5

Blankie - Paul Di Filippo

Child minder's overly close attention gives spiteful big baby up.


4 out of 5

Digital Honey - Liz Evans

Inorganic assistance unappreciated can leave you out in the cold.


4 out of 5

Gone Bush - Chris Amies

Correspondence disposal.


3 out of 5

Play Nice - J. E. Ashley

Life stealing payback hit.


3 out of 5

You Never Know - Carol Anne Davis

Frozen killer blowup.


3 out of 5

Three Bananas - Larry Tritten

Extinct fruit orgy revenge.


3.5 out of 5

Prison Dreams - Paul J. McAuley

Doll triage run.


3.5 out of 5

The Uncertainty Principle - John Moralee

Paedophile rejuve extreme.


3.5 out of 5

Thighs - Melanie Fogel

Hardbody trade.


3 out of 5

Mindstalker - Martin Edwards

Psychological murder skills.


3.5 out of 5

Heartache - Stuart Young

Sexually transmitted assassination.


4.5 out of 5

Blood Sisters - Joe Haldeman

Original courtesan clone kill refusal freedom association.


4 out of 5

A Scanner Darkly - Philip K. Dick

Drug scramble.


4 out of 5

Needle Taste - M. Christian

Revenge removal.


2.5 out of 5

Violation - William F. Nolan

Traffic policing is killer.


4 out out of 5

Offenders - Mat Coward

Joke police.


3.5 out of 5

Axl Against the Immortals - Jon Courtenay Grimwood

Whore transformation raid.


3.5 out of 5

Seiza - Steven Schwartz

Net run relations.


2.5 out of 5

The Incorporated - John Shirley

Corporate disinformation system edit.


4 out of 5

The Shape of Murder - Ian Watson

Poirot ship instantiation investigation shifts.


3 out of 5

Footprint On Nowhere Beach - Conrad Williams

Murder supply chip replay.


3 out of 5

Glass Earth Inc. - Stephen Baxter

Advertising unreality dysfunction.


3.5 out of 5

Celebrate the Bullet - Richard Paul Russo

Sheltered violence distribution.


4 out of 5

Good-by Miss Patterson - Phyllis McLennan

Take that you old bat.


3.5 out of 5

Thorn - Robert Holdstock

Stony faced god botherer.


3 out of 5

Bite-Me-Not or Fleur de Fur - Tanith Lee

Flighty vamp, unflighty girl.


2.5 out of 5

Subworld - Phyllis Eisenstein

Metro mouse club.


3.5 out of 5

Beyond the Dead Reef - James Tiptree Jr

Scattered sea woman scare.


4 out of 5

Friday, September 21, 2007

Tuf Voyaging - George R. R. Martin

Another short story collection by Martin. Tuf, the central characater is quite strange. He is cold, and dispassionate. He is also a man living basically alone with cats. Not that normal, there.

His really big ship has some impressive capabilities, and he uses them to try and solve what he sees as environmental problems, among other things.

This brings him into conflict with many other people. He is not your likable hero kind of guy, more cold and pragmatic.

Tuf Voyaging : The Plague Star - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : Loaves and Fishes - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : Guardians - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : Second Helpings - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : A Beast for Norn - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : Call Him Moses - George R. R. Martin
Tuf Voyaging : Manna from Heaven - George R. R. Martin



If you want to acquire an AI ship and shaft the people you hire to do it for you, make sure it likes you.

Also, if someone says there is Tyrannosaur behind you, believe them.

If the Tyrannosaur is hungry, ensure preplanning acquisition of serious artillery.

4 out of 5


If someone is in charge of a giant AI planet engineering ship, don't nick their cat.

3.5 out of 5


Namor, Prince of the Deep is a kitten.

3.5 out of 5


A return to S'uthlam, and his dramatisation is way more popular than Tuf or his cats.

3.5 out of 5


A spot of supply problems for an animal combat arena.

3 out of 5


Biological plague dealing.

3 out of 5


Drastic solutions for ridiculous population problems.

4 out of 5




4 out of 5

Manna From Heaven - George R. R. Martin

Drastic solutions for ridiculous population problems.


4 out of 5

Call Him Moses - George R. R. Martin

Biological plague dealing.


3 out of 5

A Beast For Norn - George R. R. Martin

A spot of supply problems for an animal combat arena.


3 out of 5

Second Helpings - George R. R. Martin

A return to S'uthlam, and his dramatisation is way more popular than Tuf or his cats.


3.5 out of 5

Guardians - George R. R. Martin

Namor, Prince of the Deep is a kitten.


3.5 out of 5

The Leopard - Terry Dowling

The story of Tom's early days out of the Madhouse, and his meeting with Scarbo, with more of Lone Star Stone.


4.5 out of 5

When Will You Rage - Stewart Wieck

The second White Wolf game anthology novel, this time based around the Garou and the Werewolf game. Generally, there are stories about the heroic struggles of the wolfies trying to hold back the depredations and corruptions of the Wyrm, whethr in their own society, or in human corruption and pollution.

Also, directly via Wyrm created monsters.

When Will You Rage : The Waters of Lethe - Bill Bridges
When Will You Rage : Coyote Full Moon - Sam Chupp
When Will You Rage : A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing - Vincent Courtenay
When Will You Rage : Transitions - Nigel D. Findley
When Will You Rage : Fang of the Wolf - Owl Goingback
When Will You Rage : Hunters Blues - Scott Ciencin
When Will You Rage : The Bye-Bye Club - Ray Winninger
When Will You Rage : Wolf Trap - Richard Lee Byers
When Will You Rage : Predator and Prey - David Chart
When Will You Rage : Lone Werewolf - Lois Tilton
When Will You Rage : Shards - Phil Brucato
When Will You Rage : A Day Off - Thomas Kane
When Will You Rage : Little Flea - Scott Urban
When Will You Rage : A Wolf In Shepherd's Clothing - Edo van Belkom
When Will You Rage : For Auld Lang Syne - James A. Moore
When Will You Rage : A Third World - Graham Watkins
When Will You Rage : A Useless Death - Don Bassingthwaite
When Will You Rage : Calleys Story - Alara Rogers
When Will You Rage : Trickster Moon - J. S. Banks


Werewolf memories.

3 out of 5


Werewolf ritual.

2.5 out of 5


Garou racism.

3 out of 5


Glass Walker issues with Black Spiral Dancer.

2.5 out of 5


An old Wendigo wanderer helps a young Garou.

3 out of 5


Some wolf hunters get a lot more than they bargained for.

3 out of 5


Orphan struggles.

2.5 out of 5


A rescue attempt from a facility experimenting with Garou breeding has a few problems.

3.5 out of 5


Best defense is a good offense.

2.5 out of 5


A zoo worker Garou helps some cubs.

3.5 out of 5


Resisting integration.

3 out of 5


A dodgy job.

2 out of 5


Camping monsters.

2.5 out of 5


A priest Garou keeps his area clean.

3 out of 5


Kidnapping retribution.

3 out of 5


Release from the D.N.A., with some Bastet help.

3 out of 5


A duellist meets an old dead friend.

3.5 out of 5


A metis doesn't like the city, despite its friends.

2 out of 5


City choices.

2 out of 5



1.5 out of 5

Bone Song - John Meaney

Necroinvestigations.

This is to all intents and purposes a detective novel first, complete with tough guy detective, corrupt politicians, gangsters, and the rest of the trappings.

The thing that is different is the setting, which in other ways could be like any other Western type city.

The book most similar in flavour I can think of would be Walter Jon William's Metropolitan/City On Fire, but without the politics and socioeconomics.

However, this one is fueled by the bones of dead people, and spells and hexes and zombies and wraiths and intelligent deathwolves all exist.

So, necropower instead of electricity, and other weird stuff aside, the major character has to investigate the continuing deaths of people who are famous and as such have collectable bones.

Secret nefarious cabal, and all that. A dangerous guy to be around tihs detective, whether you are a forensic Bone Listener, or a cabal member, or his zombie boss.

Perhaps a touch more interesting than a 3.5.


3.5 out of 5

The Erl King - Angela Carter

Forest Lord shagging will be the death of someone.


3.5 out of 5

Johanna - Jane Yolen

Venison viewing shot down.


3.5 out of 5

Lila the Werewolf - Peter S. Beagle

If your girlfriend eats live canines, follow Paul Simon's advice. Pick one.


3.5 out of 5

The Wager Lost By Winning - John Brunner

You better bet your life. Only not against a chaos defeating ageless sorcerer.


3.5 out of 5

The Kings Of the Sea - Sterling E. Lanier

Seaserpent turf defender succession deal.


4 out of 5

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Timothy - Keith Roberts

Scarecrow animation gallivantin' cancellation.


3.5 out of 5

Same Time Same Place - Mervyn Peake

Beauty is a beast, stoopid.


2.5 out of 5

The Sudden Wings - Thomas Burnett Swann

Old winged guy wants friends, one of each flavour.


3.5 out of 5

The Singular Events Which Occurred in the Hovel on the Alley Off of Eye Street - Avram Davidson

Check if tempted, for a spell.


3 out of 5

Operation Afreet - Poul Anderson

Witchwolf teamup success requires djinn psychology.


4 out of 5

The Silken-Swift - Theodore Sturgeon

Virgin deception test, unicorn required.


3 out of 5

Homecoming - Ray Bradbury

I want to feel the wind beneath my wings. Or I'll cry.


3.5 out of 5

The Final Voyage of Captain Gelise - Terry Dowling

An outcast Captain takes Tom to meet the belltree Lone Star Stone.


4 out of 5

Jirel Meets Magic - C. L. Moore

Having to rid herself of a wizard that has killed some or her men, Jirel finds worse, his own ruler, a sorceress.


4 out of 5

Loaves and Fishes - George R. R. Martin

If someone is in charge of a giant AI planet engineering ship, don't nick their cat.


3.5 out of 5

The Plague Star - George R. R. Martin

If you want to acquire an AI ship and shaft the people you hire to do it for you, make sure it likes you.

Also, if someone says there is Tyrannosaur behind you, believe them.

If the Tyrannosaur is hungry, ensure preplanning acquisition of serious artillery.



4 out of 5

Trickster Moon - J. S. Banks

City choices.


2 out of 5

Calley's Story - Alara Rogers

A metis doesn't like the city, despite its friends.


2 out of 5

A Useless Death - Don Bassingthwaite

A duellist meets an old dead friend.


3.5 out of 5

A Third World - Graham Watkins

Release from the D.N.A., with some Bastet help.


3 out of 5

For Auld Lang Syne - James A. Moore

Kidnapping retribution.


3 out of 5

A Wolf In Shepherd's Clothing - Edo van Belkom

A priest Garou keeps his area clean.


3 out of 5

Little Flea - Scott Urban

Camping monsters.


2.5 out of 5

A Day Off - Thomas Kane

A dodgy job.


3 out of 5

Shards - Phil Brucato

Resisting integration.


3 out of 5

Lone Werewolf - Lois Tilton

A zoo worker Garou helps some cubs.


3.5 out of 5

Predator and Prey - David Chart

Best defense is a good offense.


2.5 out of 5

Wolf Trap - Richard Lee Byers

A rescue attempt from a facility experimenting with Garou breeding has a few problems.


3.5 out of 5

The Bye-Bye Club - Ray Winninger

Orphan struggles.


2.5 out of 5

Hunter's Blues - Scott Ciencin

Some wolf hunters get a lot more than they bargained for.


3 out of 5

Fang of the Wolf - Owl Goingback

An old Wendigo wanderer helps a young Garou.


3 out of 5

Transitions - Nigel D. Findley

Glass Walker issues with Black Spiral Dancer.


2.5 out of 5

A Sheep In Wolf's Clothing - Vincent Courtney

Garou racism.


3 out of 5

Coyote Full Moon - Sam Chupp

Werewolf ritual.


2.5 out of 5

The Waters Of Lethe - Bill Bridges

Werewolf memories.


3 out of 5

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Nights at Totem Rule - Terry Dowling

Tom goes to Totem Rule to try and find out more about his dreams.


3.5 out of 5

The Beast Within - Stewart Wieck

The first White Wolf anthology, this time based around the Vampire game. You get different stories that look at a few different characters, some that had been mentioned in the game in passing. So, a few insights into on the ground vampire society and how they work within and try and avoid their own rules.


Beast Within : The Scarlet Letters - Scott H. Urban
Beast Within : Interesting Times - Matt Forbeck
Beast Within : The Voice of the Hummingbird - S. P. Somtow
Beast Within : Power - Don Bassingthwaite
Beast Within : Darkening of the Light - Bill Bridges
Beast Within : Dancing with the Devil - Keith “Doc” Herber
Beast Within : The Art of Dying - Lawrence Watt-Evans
Beast Within : Descent - Sam Chupp
Beast Within : Expendable - Lois Tilton
Beast Within : Homecoming: Affairs of the Heart - James A. Moore
Beast Within : Masquerade - Kevin Andrew Murphy
Beast Within : Undercover - Matthew J. Costello
Beast Within : Prisons - Shane Hensley


A poetry girl doesn't expect to find a vampire in San Francisco.

2 out of 5


Humans taste good, but eating vampires is more ethical.

3 out of 5


An Aztec monster is uncovered.

3.5 out of 5


Jean-Claude, vampire ruler, gets a vampire pathologist to help with out with a Setite issue.

3 out of 5


Nosferatu discussions.

2.5 out of 5


Nosferatu discussions.

2.5 out of 5


Looking for dinner among junkies and whores.

2.5 out of 5


Choosing a long term sponsor.

2.5 out of 5


Fine dining and plotting.

3 out of 5


A vampire and his dog. Yeah, he called it Fang.

3 out of 5


Communicating with mum.

2.5 out of 5


A Sabbat confrontation.

2.5 out of 5


Recruiting the hunters.

3 out of 5


A drug deal shootee is a in a lot better shape than he should be, surprising a cop.

3 out of 5




2 out of 5

Death and Damnation - Stewart Wieck and Staley Krause

When they came out with their ghosty game, Wraith, and seeing that there were anthology books for all the other games, then you figured one of these was coming.

Yep, it was. Like the others, it is not horrendous, especially for fans of the setting. Otherwise, nothing that will really interest you here.

Death and Damnation : Prodigal Son - Don Bassingthwaite
Death and Damnation : Crossings - Nigel Findley
Death and Damnation : Rootbound - R. S. Martin
Death and Damnation : Shackles - Richard Lee Byers
Death and Damnation : Cancer - Marc Miller
Death and Damnation : Glimpses of Before - John H. Steele
Death and Damnation : Reaper versus Reaper versus Reaper - Edo van Belkom
Death and Damnation : For the Coming - Joseph M. Shaughnessy
Death and Damnation : Ties That Bind - Kevin Andrew Murphy
Death and Damnation : The Pardoners Tale - Jackie Cassada
Death and Damnation : Breaking Free - James A. Moore
Death and Damnation : The Way It Goes - Thomas Kane



Two twins switch off being wraiths, as dead all the time is not so much fun.

3.5 out of 5


A dead speculator has regrets.

3 out of 5


Definitely not a green thumb.

2.5 out of 5


A dead boxer can't escape what he was.

2.5 out of 5


A sick man finds a guide.

2 out of 5


A car accident victim in limbo.

2.5 out of 5


A jilted lover ends up taking some violent anger out after death.

3 out of 5


The underworld studies the life of a swordmaker.

3 out of 5


Goths wraiths and swearing.

2.5 out of 5


A guild man does his job.

2.5 out of 5


Seeking some revenge from beyond the grave.

3 out of 5


A corporate assassin gets sloppy.

3.5 out of 5




1.5 out of 5

The Giant Book Of Fantasy Tales - Stephen Jones and Richard Sutton

This is apparently a bunch of stories chosen from Fantasy Tales magazine. However, this collection is undoubtedly a horror collection, although there is one SF horror piece, and of course some fantasy horror, including a short 3 story sword and sorcery series by Ramsey Campbell that was a pretty cool discovery, so excellent of them to put all that in there.

A Sabat story I hadn't seen before, either, so worth getting for just the last two. Other than that, Kim Newman is easily the highlight.


Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Now and Again in Summer - Charles L. Grant
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Thievery of Yish - Lin Carter
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Vampire Village - Guy N. Smith
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Farmer and the Travelling Salesman's Daughter - C. Bruce Hunter
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Writer's Cramp - David Riley
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Ice and Fire - Ken Bulmer
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Cure - William F. Nolan
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Dispossessed - Joel Lane
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Man Who Felt Pain - Brian Lumley
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Sustenance of Hoak - Ramsey Campbell
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The One Left Behind - Stephen Gresham
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Drain - Stephen Gallagher
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Alice Smiling - Charles L. Grant
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Into the Dark Land - Darrell Schweitzer
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Man Who Collected Barker - Kim Newman
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : In the Trees - Steve Rasnic Tem
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Invisible Boy - Roberta Lannes
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Changer of Names - Ramsey Campbell
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Night Bloomer - David J. Schow
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : On the Wing - Jean-Daniel Brèque
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Bridge People - J. N. Williamson
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Networks - Garry Kilworth
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Foreign Parts - Neil Gaiman
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Monster - R. Chetwynd-Hayes
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : How Jaquerel Made War in Bel Azhurra - Janet Fox
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Mother Hen - Kim Newman
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Spectacles in the Drawer - Thomas Ligotti
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Pit of Wings - Ramsey Campbell
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Rehearsals - Thomas F. Monteleone
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : The Medusa - Thomas Ligotti
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Only Human - Adrian Cole
Giant Book of Fantasy Tales : Island with the Stink of Ghosts - Garry Kilworth

Tourist adventure.

2.5 out of 5


Cutpurse collection.

3 out of 5


Sabat is asked to help out a vampire style tourist attraction that has gotten rather real. A trap awaits.

3 out of 5


Revenge is tasty.

3.5 out of 5


Plagiarism punishment gives severe phalangeal problem.

4 out of 5


Given the extreme state of deshabille Tara requires for magic to work, getting stuck with stone monsters in the freezing mountains is no fun.

3 out of 5


Strangler's cold turkey problems cured by buddy's light of finger approach.

3 out of 5


Magic discussions.

3 out of 5


Space doesn't hurt so good.

4 out of 5


Ryre and friend find a town in the thrall of something big and hungry.

3.5 out of 5


Hybrid yuck.

2.5 out of 5


Monster pipe pursuit picking off.

3.5 out of 5


Housewife hell.

2 out of 5


Knight, bell rings for your funny bone.

2.5 out of 5


Highly personalised work.

4 out of 5


Up where we belong. With lightning bolts.

3 out of 5


Wretched babe butcher observation revelation.

3.5 out of 5


Ryre runs into a man giving people serious delusions of heroism that is not their own

3.5 out of 5


Seeds of corporate malfeasance get too real.

3.5 out of 5


Family issue.

2 out of 5


Bad smells.

2.5 out of 5


Deranged dunny.

3.5 out of 5


VD psyche.

3 out of 5


Humans don't fit in.

3 out of 5


Being a superthief isn't all it is cracked up to be.

3.5 out of 5


I want to break free. Even if I am a bizarre magic bird statuette.

4 out of 5


Ended with a Plomb.

3 out of 5


Even if it only looks vaguely like a big monstrous butterfly, and you are stuck in a hole full of skeletons, stick the sword in the tempting middle looking spot first.

4 out of 5


Childhood replay's the thing.

3.5 out of 5


Snakes alive, stone surprise.

3 out of 5


Outsider demon deal.

3.5 out of 5


Dead brother is on the nose.

3 out of 5




3 out of 5

Prisons - Shane Hensley

A drug deal shootee is a in a lot better shape than he should be, surprising a cop.


3 out of 5

Undercover - Matthew J. Costello

Recruiting the hunters.


3 out of 5

Homecoming Affairs Of the Heart - James A. Moore

Communicating with mum.


2.5 out of 5

Expendable - Lois Tilton

A vampire and his dog. Yeah, he called it Fang.


3 out of 5

Descent - Sam Chupp

Fine dining and plotting.


3 out of 5

The Art Of Dying - Lawrence Watt-Evans

Choosing a long term sponsor.


2.5 out of 5

Dancing With the Devil - Keith Herber

Looking for dinner among junkies and whores.


2.5 out of 5

Darkening Of the Light - Bill Bridges

Nosferatu discussions.


2.5 out of 5

Power - Don Bassingthwaite

Jean-Claude, vampire ruler, gets a vampire pathologist to help with out with a Setite issue.


3 out of 5

The Voice of the Hummingbird - S. P. Somtow

An Aztec monster is uncovered.


3.5 out of 5

Interesting Times - Matt Forbeck

Humans taste good, but eating vampires is more ethical.


3 out of 5

The Scarlet Letters - Scott Urban

A poetry girl doesn't expect to find a vampire in San Francisco.


3 out of 5

The Way It Goes - Thomas Kane

A corporate assassin gets sloppy.


3.5 out of 5

Breaking Free - James A. Moore

Seeking some revenge from beyond the grave.


3 out of 5

The Pardoner's Tale - Jackie Cassada

A guild man does his job.


2.5 out of 5

For the Coming - Joseph M. Shaughnessy

The underworld studies the life of a swordmaker.


3 out of 5

Reaper vs Reaper vs Reaper - Edo van Belkom

A jilted lover ends up taking some violent anger out after death.


3 out of 5

Glimpses Of Before - John H. Steele

A car accident victim in limbo.


2.5 out of 5

Cancer - Marc Miller

A sick man finds a guide.


2 out of 5

Shackles - Richard Lee Byers

A dead boxer can't escape what he was.


2.5 out of 5

Rootbound - R. S. Martin

Definitely not a green thumb.


2.5 out of 5

Crossings - Nigel D. Findlay

A dead speculator has regrets.


3 out of 5

Prodigal Son - Don Bassingthwaite

Two twins switch off being wraiths, as dead all the time is not so much fun.


3.5 out of 5

Island With the Stink of Ghosts - Garry Kilworth

Dead brother is on the nose.


3 out of 5

Only Human - Adrian Cole

Outsider demon deal.


3.5 out of 5

The Medusa - Thomas Ligotti

Snakes alive, stone surprise.


3 out of 5

Reharsals - Thomas F. Monteleone

Childhood replay's the thing.


3.5 out of 5

The Pit of Wings - Ramsey Campbell

Even if it only looks vaguely like a big monstrous butterfly, and you are stuck in a hole full of skeletons, stick the sword in the tempting middle looking spot first.


4 out of 5

The Spectacles In the Drawer - Thomas Ligotti

Ended with a Plomb.


3 out of 5

Mother Hen - Kim Newman

I want to break free. Even if I am a bizarre magic bird statuette.


4 out of 5

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Best Served Cold - Frank Fradella

Permafrost, although young, was the wrong target for a rapist.


2.5 out of 5

Mother and Child Reunion - Frank Fradella

A hero that can predict the future saves a city by stopping a superstrong Behemoth.


2 out of 5

Flight of the Horse - Larry Niven

A collection of stories, several of which are about a time agent's missions to collect rare animals from earth's past from a far future time. They have a humorous bent as the hapless servant does the will of his political master.

There is a Warlock story - What Good Is A Glass Dagger, and also his Flash Crowd look at mass teleportation.

Flight of the Horse : The Flight of the Horse - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : Leviathan! - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : Bird in the Hand - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : There's a Wolf in My Time Machine - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : Death in a Cage - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : Flash Crowd - Larry Niven
Flight of the Horse : What Good Is a Glass Dagger? - Larry Niven


I wish he would get his own bloody unicorn.

3.5 out of 5


Appearances in the record should not be taken as gospel for massive mythical monsters.

3 out of 5


Roc the plasma.

3.5 out of 5


Werewolf girl following time.

3 out of 5


Don't see this doctor.

2.5 out of 5


Teleport violence groupings.

4 out of 5


The old Warlock still has the mana experimentation thing going on. A werewolf wants in, and he has a problem with a snail dragon as well.

So he goes for a low-tech sneaky solution, with a bit of subterfuge, as well as a bit of magical innovation.

3.5 out of 5





3.5 out of 5

Flash Crowd - Larry Niven

Teleport violence groupings.


4 out of 5

Death In A Cage - Larry Niven

Don't see this doctor.


2.5 out of 5

There's A Wolf In My Time Machine - Larry Niven

Werewolf girl following time.


3 out of 5

Bird In the Hand - Larry Niven

Roc the plasma.


3.5 out of 5

Prayers to Broken Stones - Dan Simmons

A motley collection, with work from several genres. Some of the stories here are developed into longer works later, such as Carrion Comfort, and a couple that are used in some form or another in the Hyperion series.

So, a decent introduction to Simmons, with the wary story 'E-Ticket to Namland' a nice example of something a little different, and Remembering Siri an excellent slice of the Hyperion universe.

He gives an intro on how each story came to be, and Harlan Ellison describes how he discovered him in a story workshop, directly after someone that was completely and utterly incapable of writing a sentence.

Prayers to Broken Stones : The River Styx Runs Upstream - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Eyes I Dare Not Meet in Dreams - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Vanni Fucci is Alive and Well and Living in Hell - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Vexed to Nightmare by a Rocking Cradle - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Remembering Siri - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Metastasis - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : The Offering - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : E-Ticket to Namland - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Iversons Pits - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Shave and a Haircut Two Bites - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : The Death of the Centaur - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Two Minutes Forty-Five Seconds - Dan Simmons
Prayers to Broken Stones : Carrion Comfort [SS] - Dan Simmons


Resurrection relations.

4 out of 5


Widower mindtouch memory recreation.

4 out of 5


Bolgia's televangelist transformation torment time.

3.5 out of 5


Santa vigil slaughter sacrifice.

3.5 out of 5


Hawking seduction's intermittent progress.

4.5 out of 5


Cancer monster suspicion.

3 out of 5


War tourism recreation.

4 out of 5


Officer's holey end.

3 out of 5


Bloody barber's bizarre basement bloke.

3.5 out of 5


Teaching problem.

2.5 out of 5


Space try failure fall.

3.5 out of 5


Mind vampire deathmatch.

4 out of 5





4 out of 5

Truth Until Paradox - Stewart Wieck

Probably the best of the first three World of Darkness books, with that
uneasy Mage feeling of being slightly out of step with everything. They
are obviously feeling their way with this sort of thing, but Mage was
what appealed to me the most, which is perhaps why I like this book
more out of the first three.

Truth Until Paradox : The Crystal Messiah - Philip Nutman
Truth Until Paradox : The Great Escape - Edo van Belkom
Truth Until Paradox : Introit - Jackie Cassada
Truth Until Paradox : When the Moon - James S. Dorr
Truth Until Paradox : That Which Is Given - Don Bassingthwaite
Truth Until Paradox : Waiting for Yesterday - Brett Brooks
Truth Until Paradox : Candledark - Thomas S. Roche
Truth Until Paradox : Make Em Laugh - James Lowder
Truth Until Paradox : A Block of Time - Jane M. Lindskold
Truth Until Paradox : The Judas Tree - Richard Lee Byers
Truth Until Paradox : End Run - Nigel D. Findley
Truth Until Paradox : Pushing the Right Buttons - Doug Murray
Truth Until Paradox : Dreamspeaker - Bill Crider
Truth Until Paradox : Devils Bargain - Thomas Kane
Truth Until Paradox : Silver Nutmeg Golden Pear - Jim Moore and Kevin Murphy
Truth Until Paradox : Grim Reminders - Jim Moore and Kevin Murphy
Truth Until Paradox : The Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove - John H. Steele

A girl helps a newly Awakened mage that everybody seems to fear or want a piece of.

3.5 out of 5


A magician attracts the Technocracy's attention.

3 out of 5


A Celestial Chorus nun moves to San Francisco.

3 out of 5


A junkie starts seeing strange things.

2 out of 5


The Technocracy wants to intervene in the activation of a Node.

3.5 out of 5


Dinner Paradox discussion.

3 out of 5


Grown clone assassin mission gets magic end.

2.5 out of 5


A Sons of Ether mage seeks music and happiness.

3 out of 5


Dreamspeakers and time travel.

3 out of 5


An Order of Hermes mage has to work out something else.

3 out of 5


Halloween turns nasty for a mage and his girl after some HIT Marks arrive.

3.5 out of 5


A Technomancer helps a girl of the opposition, in very much his own way.

3 out of 5


Some machinations to deal with for one of the titular sort.

2.5 out of 5


Nephandi recruitment is tempting.

3 out of 5


Some dodgy transactions.

3 out of 5


Nephandi dominatrix, perhaps?

2.5 out of 5


A detective looks for a boy undergoing magical training.

3 out of 5




2.5 out of 5

How Jaquerel Made War in Bel Azhurra - Janet Fox

Being a superthief isn't all it is cracked up to be.


3.5 out of 5

The Monster - R. Chetwynd-Hayes

Humans don't fit in.


3 out of 5

Foreign Parts - Neil Gaiman

VD psyche.


3 out of 5

Networks - Garry Kilworth

Deranged dunny.


3.5 out of 5

The Bridge People - J. N. Williamson

Bad smells.


2.5 out of 5

On the Wing - Jean-Daniel Breque

Family issue.


2 out of 5

Night Bloomer - David J. Schow

Seeds of corporate malfeasance get too real.


3.5 out of 5

The Changer of Names - Ramsey Campbell

Ryre runs into a man giving people serious delusions of heroism that is not their own.


3.5 out of 5

The Invisible Boy - Roberta Lannes

Wretched babe butcher observation revelation.


3.5 out of 5

The Man Who Collected Barker - Kim Newman

Highly personalised work.


4 out of 5

Into the Dark Land - Darrell Schweitzer

Knight, bell rings for your funny bone.


2.5 out of 5

Alice Smiling - Charles L. Grant

Housewife hell.


2 out of 5

The Drain - Stephen Gallagher

Monster pipe pursuit picking off.


3.5 out of 5

The One Left Behind - Stephen Gresham

Hybrid yuck.


2.5 out of 5

Monday, September 17, 2007

Carrion Comfort - Dan Simmons

Mind vampire deathmatch.


4 out of 5

Two Minutes Forty-Five Seconds - Dan Simmons

Space try failure fall.


3.5 out of 5

The Death Of the Centaur - Dan Simmons

Teaching problem.


2.5 out of 5

Shave And A Haircut Two Bites - Dan Simmons

Bloody barber's bizarre basement bloke.


3.5 out of 5

Iverson's Pits - Dan Simmons

Officer's holey end.


3 out of 5

E-Ticket To Namland - Dan Simmons

War tourism recreation.


4 out of 5

Metastasis - Dan Simmons

Cancer monster suspicion.


3 out of 5

Remembering Siri - Dan Simmons

Hawking seduction's intermittent progress.


4.5 out of 5

Vexed to Nightmare by a Rocking Cradle - Dan Simmons

Santa vigil slaughter sacrifice.


3.5 out of 5

Vanni Fucci is Alive and Well and Living in Hell - Dan Simmons

Bolgia's televangelist transformation torment time.


3.5 out of 5

Eyes I Dare Not Meet In Dreams - Dan Simmons

Widower mindtouch memory recreation.


4 out of 5

The River Styx Runs Upstream - Dan Simmons

Resurrection relations.


4 out of 5

The Seven Sages of the Bamboo Grove - John H. Steele

A detective looks for a boy undergoing magical training.


3 out of 5

Grim Reminders - James A. Moore and Kevin Andrew Murphy

Nephandi dominatrix, perhaps?


2.5 out of 5

Devil's Bargain - Thomas Kane

Nephandi recruitment is tempting.


3 out of 5

Dreamspeaker - Bill Crider

Some machinations to deal with for one of the titular sort.


2.5 out of 5

Pushing the Right Buttons - Doug Murray

A Technomancer helps a girl of the opposition, in very much his own way.


3 out of 5

End Run - Nigel D. Findley

Halloween turns nasty for a mage and his girl after some HIT Marks arrive.


3.5 out of 5

The Judas Tree - Richard Lee Byers

An Order of Hermes mage has to work out something else.


3 out of 5

A Block Of Time - Jane Lindskold

Dreamspeakers and time travel.


3 out of 5

Make Em Laugh - James Lowder

A Sons of Ether mage seeks music and happiness.


3 out of 5

Candledark - Thomas S. Roche

Grown clone assassin mission gets magic end.


2.5 out of 5

Waiting For Yesterday - Brett Brooks

Dinner Paradox discussion.


3 out of 5

That Which Is Given - Don Bassingthwaite

The technocracy wants to intervene in the activation of a Node.


3.5 out of 5

When the Moon - James S. Dorr

A junkie starts seeing strange things.


2 out of 5

Introit - Jackie Cassada

A Celestial Chorus nun moves to San Francisco.


3 out of 5

The Great Escape - Edo van Belkom

A magician attracts the Technocracy's attention.


3 out of 5

The Crystal Messiah - Philip Nutman

A girl helps a newly Awakened mage that everybody seems to fear or want a piece of.


3.5 out of 5

Sandworms of Dune - Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson

Ghola overload.


The first half of this is close to dreck, with static interval after static interval presented.

The latter part improves a little and becomes more cohesive, and more interesting, as the final confrontation between the machines and the humans involves on two fronts, and a couple of surprises await.


3 out of 5

The Sustenance of Hoak - Ramsey Campbell

Ryre and friend find a town in the thrall of something big and hungry.


3.5 out of 5

The Man Who Felt Pain - Brian Lumley

Space doesn't hurt so good.


4 out of 5

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Dispossesed - Joel Lane

Magic discussions.


2.5 out of 5

The Cure - William F. Nolan

Strangler's cold turkey problems cured by buddy's light of finger approach.


3 out of 5

Ice and Fire - Kenneth Bulmer

Given the extreme state of deshabille Tara requires for magic to work, getting stuck with stone monsters in the freezing mountains is no fun.


3 out of 5

Writer's Cramp - David Riley

Plagiarism punishment gives severe phalangeal problem.


4 out of 5

Preventative Measures - Frank Fradella

Two old superhumans try to enforce their no superheroes allowed mandate on literally, Newcomer.


2 out of 5

Sailors Along the Soul - Terry Dowling

Tom and crew take a woman out looking for a real ship at the heart of a ghostly mirage.


3.5 out of 5

The Farmer and the Travelling Salesman's Daughter - C. Bruce Hunter

Revenge is tasty.


3.5 out of 5

Vampire Village - Guy N. Smith

Sabat is asked to help out a vampire style tourist attraction that has gotten rather real. A trap awaits.


3 out of 5

The Thievery of Yish - Lin Carter

Cutpurse collection.


3 out of 5

Now And Again In Summer - Charles L. Grant

Tourist adventure.


2.5 out of 5

Saturday, September 15, 2007

If I Were An Evil Overlord - Martin H. Greenberg and Russell Davis

If you have an anthology that has 10 of 14 average of worse stories I would think your standard Evil Overlord would do bad things to the publisher and the editor, and their families, and their cats.

In other words, this is bad. That leaves 4 decent stories, but no good ones, with not much of an intro, either, for something like this. Most of the decent stories featured an actual major character who was an evil overlord. Fancy that.

If I Were An Evil Overlord : If Looks Could Kill - Esther M Friesner
If I Were An Evil Overlord : The Man Who Would Be Overlord - David Bischoff
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Ensuring the Succession - Jody Lynn Nye
If I Were An Evil Overlord : The Life and Death of Fortune Cookie Tyrant - Dean Wesley Smith
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Daddy's Little Girl - Jim C Hines
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Gordie Gulligan vs Dr Longbeach and the HVAC of Doom - J Steven York
If I Were An Evil Overlord : The Sins of the Sons - Fiona Patton
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Loser Takes All - Donald J Bingle
If I Were An Evil Overlord : The Next Level - David Niall Wilson
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Advisors at Naptime - Kristine Kathryn Rusch
If I Were An Evil Overlord : A Woman's Work - Tanya Huff
If I Were An Evil Overlord : To Sit in Darkness Here Hatching Vain Empires - Steven A Roman
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Stronger than Fate - John Helfers
If I Were An Evil Overlord : Art Therapy - Nina Kiriki Hoffman


Elf prince prison gender surprise.

2.5 out of 5


Abstinence required magic deity deal.

3 out of 5


Generational planning regimental aloofness.

3.5 out of 5


Bikkie power busted by rule breaking.

3 out of 5


Serpent child's zombie stooge.

2.5 out of 5


Dude, worst evil overlord ever.

2 out of 5


Necromancer succession strategy.

3.5 out of 5


Gamer geek, locked in room. What else would it be called?

3 out of 5


Advancement hard. Harder still if you don't watch out for the knives.

2.5 out of 5


World domination game is boring when you are knee high to a grasshopper.

2.5 out of 5


Very polite, and very, very pragmatic this Queen.

3.5 out of 5


Supervillain Professor Plum discovers yes, it is possible to set the atmosphere on fire, and it helps if you have access to an escape to another multiverse transport device working when you do.

3 out of 5


Titles are important.

3 out of 5


Delusions of Overlordure, with pictures.

3.5 out of 5





2 out of 5

Art Therapy - Nina Kiriki Hoffman

Delusions of Overlordure, with pictures.


3.5 out of 5

The Martians - Kim Stanley Robinson

The Martians is a set of short stories and anecdotes about people and places set in and around Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars trilogy. An ok piece of extra work here, but nothing you need to rush out and get. It is not particularly memorable at all, in other words, but definitely is not bad. It also includes eome poetry in the latter part.

Martians : Michel in Antarctica - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Exploring Fossil Canyon - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : The Archaea Plot - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : The Way the Land Spoke to Us - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Maya and Desmond - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Four Teleogical Trails - Kim Stanley Robinson;
Martians : Coyote Makes Trouble - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Michel in Provence - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Green Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Arthur Sternbach Brings the Curveball to Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Salt and Fresh - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : The Constitution of Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Some Worknotes and Commentary on the Constitution by Charlotte Dorsa Brevia - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Jackie on Zo - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Keeping the Flame - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Saving Noctis Dam - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Big Man in Love - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : An Argument for the Deployment of All Safe Terraforming Technologies - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Selected Abstracts from The Journal of Areological Studies - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Odessa - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Sexual Dimorphism - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Enough is as Good as a Feast - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : What Matters - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Coyote Remembers - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Sax Moments - Kim Stanley Robinson
Martians : Purple Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson

Psychiatric expedition evaluation.

4.5 out of 5


Dead life discovery.

3 out of 5


Terraforming fable.

3 out of 5


Chaotic terrain.

3 out of 5


Enamored stowaway story.

4 out of 5


Track turns.

2.5 out of 5


Anti Transformation agitation.

3.5 out of 5


Planetary leavings.

3.5 out of 5


High point achieved.

3.5 out of 5


A coach has to adapt the game to the physics of the red planet, and help a young man along the way.

4 out of 5


Fable watering.

3 out of 5


Legal document.

3.5 out of 5


Legal document discussion.

3.5 out of 5


Rugrat.

2.5 out of 5


Nirgal's new First Hundred meeting.

3.5 out of 5


Flimsy solution.

3 out of 5


Gonad reduction fable.

3 out of 5


Nuclear argument.

3 out of 5


Abstract science.

3.5 out of 5


Surface admiration.

2 out of 5


Women, men, pretty similar most of the time. Boobs float differently while swimming, apparently.

4 out of 5


Crater living.

3.5 out of 5


Green discussion.

3 out of 5


Friends.

3.5 out of 5


Memory worries.

3.5 out of 5


Possibly Dead Mars.

3 out of 5


School time.

3 out of 5




3 out of 5

The Babel Ships - Terry Dowling

Tom looks for simulation and psychological help to find out what the 'Ship' image is.


4.5 out of 5

Purple Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson

School time.


3 out of 5

Sax Moments - Kim Stanley Robinson

Memory worries.


3.5 out of 5

Coyote Remembers - Kim Stanley Robinson

Friends.


3.5 out of 5

What Matters - Kim Stanley Robinson

Green discussion.


3 out of 5

Enough is as Good as a Feast - Kim Stanley Robinson

Crater living.


3.5 out of 5

Odessa - Kim Stanley Robinson

Surface admiration.


2 out of 5

Selected Abstracts from The Journal of Areological Studies - Kim Stanley Robinson

Abstract science.


3.5 out of 5

An Argument for the Deployment of All Safe Terraforming Technologies - Kim Stanley Robinson

Nuclear argument.


3 out of 5

Big Man In Love - Kim Stanley Robinson

Gonad reduction fable.


3 out of 5

Saving Noctis Dam - Kim Stanley Robinson

Flimsy solution.


3 out of 5

Keeping the Flame - Kim Stanley Robinson

Nirgal's new First Hundred meeting.


3.5 out of 5

Jackie On Zo - Kim Stanley Robinson

Rugrat.


2.5 out of 5

Some Worknotes and Commentary on the Constitution by Charlotte Dorsa Brevia - Kim Stanley Robinson

Legal document discussion.


3.5 out of 5

The Constitution Of Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson

Legal document.


3.5 out of 5

Salt and Fresh - Kim Stanley Robinson

Fable watering.


3 out of 5

Green Mars - Kim Stanley Robinson

High point achieved.


3.5 out of 5

Michel In Provence - Kim Stanley Robinson

Planetary leavings.


3.5 out of 5

Coyote Makes Trouble - Kim Stanley Robinson

Anti Transformation agitation.


3.5 out of 5

Four Teleological Trails - Kim Stanley Robinson

Track turns.


2.5 out of 5

Maya and Desmond - Kim Stanley Robinson

Enamored stowaway story.


4 out of 5

The Way The Land Spoke To Us - Kim Stanley Robinson

Chaotic terrain.


3 out of 5

The Archaea Plot - Kim Stanley Robinson

Terraforming fable.


3 out of 5

Exploring Fossil Canyon - Kim Stanley Robinson

Dead life discovery.


3 out of 5

Stronger Than Fate - John Helfers

Titles are important.


3 out of 5

To Sit In Darkness Here Hatching Vain Empires - Steven A. Roman

Supervillain Professor Plum discovers yes, it is possible to set the atmosphere on fire, and it helps if you have access to an escape to another multiverse transport device working when you do