Tag Archives: Books

Mining the Genre Asteroid: War for the Oaks by Emma Bull

28 Sep warfortheoaks

Eddi McCandry is the guitarist for a band that has just broken up. Her career in rock’n’roll is going nowhere; she’s broken up with her boyfriend; and she is more than a little adrift. Luckily for Eddi, a twist of fate makes her the one selected as the talisman for the conflict between two warring factions of faerie:  Seelie and Unseelie. They need a mortal present in order to be able to actually war against each other and physically battle, and Eddi has gotten the job. Add in a Phouka keeper to shepherd her through the runup to the Faerie confrontation, Eddi’s attempts to form a new band and find herself and her musical voice, and a gigantic helping of late 1980’s Minneapolis.

And did I mention the Unseelie are trying to kill her? Continue reading

223. Robert Jackson Bennett (a.k.a. Stairmaster) — City of Stairs (An Interview)

24 Sep

Fallen gods, city steps, and one-eyed warriors, oh my!  The award-winning author Robert Jackson Bennett joins Shaun, Paul, and Rachael to discuss his newest novel, City of Stairs.  We tackled the development of Bulikov, the city at the center of City of Stairs, gender, empire, religion, and more!

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  If you have iTunes and like this show, please give us a review on our iTunes page, or feel free to email us with your thoughts about the show!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below):

Episode 223 — Download (MP3)

city-of-stairs

 Show Notes:

Our new intro music is “Time Flux” by Revolution Void (CC BY 3.0).

That’s all, folks!  Thanks for listening.  See you next week.

Review Doors Open: Authors/Publishers/Creators — Bring It On!

22 Sep

If you didn’t hear the cool news, we’ve added four lovely people to our blogging crew:  Trish Matson, Cecily Kane, Daniel Haeusser, and Ciaran Roberts.  They’ll primarily review books, comics, and other things here, and they’ll help us fill the gap that poor Paul has been unable to fill on his own!  You can learn more about each of them on our contributors page.

That means we’re opening our doors to more reviews, which is a fairly new thing for us.  Full guidelines are listed here, but you might also be interested to know that our reviewers are happy to cover a wide variety of formats, including:

  • Novels and novellas
  • Anthologies and collections (we have one dedicated reviewer to this category)
  • Comics
  • Movies
  • UK authors will also be happy to know that one of our reviewers is located across the pond.  If you have a book releasing in the UK, do get in touch!
  • International Authors:  our 2014 theme is “the World SF Tour.”  If you’re a non-U.S./U.K. author, don’t hesitate to contact us, whether for a review or to participate in a podcast episode.

If you’d like to have your work reviewed, send a description of the book(s) (press release or pitch) to at skiffyandfanty[at]gmail[dot]com.  Additionally, it is helpful for our reviewers if you provide a link to the publisher’s site for the book and to an excerpt (if available).  Intended release date is also useful for determining the urgency for a review.

As the title says:  bring it on!

Book Review: Phantasm Japan edited by Nick Mamatas and Masumi Washington

19 Sep Phantasm Japan edited by Nick Mamatas and Mamoru Washington

Occasionally, I read something and don’t particularly want to review it so much as say, just read this. Or produce a review consisting of nothing but quotations from the text:  let the evidence speak. Phantasm Japan, a 2014 anthology edited by Nick Mamatas and Masumi Washington, is such a book. Pardon me while I spend the next several hundred words embarrassingly fangirl-gushing about it.

There are a few different ways to measure an anthology’s success. The one that is used most often is determining how many of the stories the reader liked versus how many they didn’t. While there’s nothing wrong with this as a metric, it’s not the primary one I use. My favorite anthologies shift my perception in some fundamental way, whether by some of the stories taken individually or by the aggregate body. Phantasm Japan does both. Considerably. Of course, producing a collection that’s bold and smart is not without risk; two or three of the more cerebral stories in this anthology sailed right over my head. There were several more that blew my mind in the best possible way. Continue reading

Book Review: SOFT APOCALYPSES by Lucy A. Snyder

14 Sep Soft Apocalypses by Lucy A. Snyder

Soft is a particularly ironic description for this collection of short fiction by Lucy A. Snyder.

Brutal. Grisly. Unflinching.

These are all words that are easier to associate with the dark nature of her stories. Indeed, a cover blurb by Seanan McGuire states that Snyder’s work “attacks the page with the raw, manic intensity of an early Sam Raimi.” Continue reading

221. Nordic SF (LonCon3 Panel) w/ Tore Høie, Anna Davour, John-Henri Holmberg, Sini Neuvonen, and Marianna Leikomaa

10 Sep

Moomin, the Arctic Circle, and volcanoes, oh my!  In our first panel recording from LonCon3 / Worldcon, Tore Høie, Anna Davour, John-Henri Holmberg, Sini Neuvonen, and Marianna Leikomaa discuss sf/f from the Scandinavian countries.  ‘Nuff said.

We hope you enjoy the episode!

Note:  If you have iTunes and like this show, please give us a review on our iTunes page, or feel free to email us with your thoughts about the show!

Here’s the episode (show notes are below):

Episode 221 — Download (MP3)

The Nordic Countries

Show Notes ((I may have missed a few things mentioned in the podcast.  If pick anything up that is not listed in the show notes, please leave a comment!):

Our new intro music is “Time Flux” by Revolution Void (CC BY 3.0).

That’s all, folks!  Thanks for listening.  See you next week.

“The Mysterious Appeal of Tintin” by Jonathan Wood

9 Sep Tintin -- Main Cast

Hey guys, I’ve got this great idea.  I’m going to write detective stories about a Belgian man-child and his alcoholic best friend.  For kids!

Clearly that shouldn’t work.  It’s madness.  Except Hergé started drawing his Tintin cartoons in the 1930s, and in 2011 the series was still popular enough for Steven Spielberg to turn it into a blockbuster movie.  Hell, I’ve loved Tintin since I discovered him about twenty-five years ago.  Clearly, there is some curious Belgian alchemy at work here.   But what the hell is it? Continue reading

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