Science Fiction Books Reviews
After a series of Earth-bound novels, Stephen Baxter marks his return to outer space with Proxima (Gollancz, £20). With his trademark scientific accuracy and seemingly effortless ability to create a sense of wonder, Baxter explores humankind's first attempt at colonising the planet of another star. Proxima IV is a hostile world, with one hemisphere perpetually facing the sun while the other is in eternal icy darkness. Yuri Jones and a thousand fellow colonists attempt to make the best of a botched mission – fighting not only the planet's inimical living conditions, but life-threatening hostility within their own ranks. Proxima brilliantly juxtaposes the wonder of an uncaring universe with the depiction of humanity's valiant struggle to survive against all the odds.
James Lovegrove's previous five bestselling novels in the Pantheon series can be described as militaristic thrillers in which the overweening gods are brought to book by the secular forces of a well-armed humanity. Age of Godpunk (Solaris, £7.99) is a change of gear, comprising three novellas that focus on individuals whose lives are transformed by their interaction with deities and devils. In "Age of Anansi", self-satisfied barrister Dion Yeboah finds himself taken over by the African trickster spider-god Anansi and forced to participate in a contest between a pantheon of pranking deities, while in "Age of Gaia", a sadistic billionaire tycoon comes a cropper when he finds himself attempting to subdue the Earth goddess Gaia in the form of eco-journalist Lydia Laidlaw. Best of all is "Age of Satan" a tongue-in-cheek homage to and send-up of the oeuvre of Dennis Wheatley, and a sensitive account of one man's fear of satanic possession and how he uses satanism to change the world for the better.
David Barnett follows a string of excellent novels from the small presses with Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl (Snowbooks, £7.99). A rambunctious, captivating steampunk romp, it lovingly utilises all the usual tropes, and more – airships and pirates, mummies and vampires, real historical characters – to bring an alternate 1890s to startling life. After the disappearance of his father and other odd goings-on in his Yorkshire village, Gideon Smith travels to London in an attempt to enlist the aid of his hero Captain Lucian Trigger. What follows is a series of adventures which take Smith, accompanied by an engaging cast, across Europe to Egypt. Barnett is a superb storyteller and brings a refreshing verve, as well as a likeable hero, to the increasingly popular sub-genre. And the good news is that this is the first volume in a trilogy.
Another trilogy begins with The Days of the Deer (Corvus, £12.99, translated by Nick Caistor and Lucia Caistor Arenda), but this is epic fantasy with a difference. In Argentinian Liliana Bodoc's slow, meditative and beautifully written fable, set in ancient South America, a storm is approaching after centuries of peace. The storm is metaphorical, of course, the symbol of an invasion of "the Eternal Hatred" (ie: conquistadors) whose forces are led by none other than Misáianes, the Son of Death. To the city of Beleram come representatives of the Fertile Lands to form a Great Council and revisit the invasion. It's a compelling portrait of a people at one with their environment, and the insidious menace that threatens their way of life.
Book (Paragon Press)
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This book is getting good reviews.2008-11-06 10:35:54 by PraiseGodBarebone
"It's a history of Europe which blends economic geography and economic archaeology. The underlying question is how Europe became so innovative and the answer has much to do with trade and migration. Imagine a more balanced and grounded Braudel. The explanation of the "Neolithic package" and its spread across Europe is stunning. I loved it when the author broke away from a passage about Phoenician trade routes to explain some odd lines in Homer
Your 4 recommendations, documentary movie, books2006-11-07 21:55:35 by otter38
1] You have a varied interest. What the bleep from the reviews amongst which a documentary-fiction hybrid exploring quantum physics, the mind-body connection, and the point at which science and spirituality intersect is more or less what we have been discussion below, about quantum physics parallel with Buddhism Abhidhamma and the mind body connection or divide as Cartesian divide and the intersection between science and spirituality at the theories of origin and development of the universe and the inferences.
Your recommended movie with 14 top scientists and mystics interviewed would be a treat
"be bemused at our curmudgeonly ways"2009-07-27 07:36:06 by stlcapricorn
So, I'm an enormous fan of epic fantasy and science fiction books. A total retard for it. I knew that D was working the weekend, so I decided to grab some books on the way home from work Friday to accomodate some serious me time the last two days. For the first time ever in my life, largely because I was bored at work, I read reviews first. One of the books I ran across (of the Mistborn Series) had a tiny little mention in a review that the author was a member of the LDS.
Warning signs, sirens, flashing lights
New paying market seeking submissions2006-06-11 08:41:15 by BBTEditors
Excerpt form the website:
Content Applicable to all Submissions
This is a publication of speculative fiction with a slant to the satirical; works of horror, fantasy, and science fiction, some of which may convey a self-deprecating or humorous view of the genre.
We are looking for fiction, illustrations, articles, and reviews of genre publications.
Keep in mind it is not our goal to attack or ridicule, but to occasionally provide a light-hearted view of the various genres and/or the followers they gather. At the same time, we don't want to lose sight of serious short fiction, and welcome those submissions as well
The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey
eBooks (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers)