Tag Archives: science fiction

Summer Books: Sci-Fi/Fantasy!

Our books today are yet another steady go-to choice for “summer books”: science fiction and fantasy novels, most of which I tend to read during the lazier summer months. Is there any point in concealing the fact that this is because the books themselves are often lazier? Most of them – even the best of […]

The Swarm!

Our book today is Frank Schatzing’s 2004 doorstop eco-thriller Der Schwarm, which was translated into English (by Sally-Ann Spencer) in 2006 as The Swarm, and it just naturally calls up a line from Cooper’s Creek by that literary household name, Alan Moorehead: “Nothing in this strange country seemed to bear the slightest resemblance to the […]

Six for a Start!

The age-old publishing maxim (it’s actually a maxim for everything, but we’ll stay on our home ground), “Stick With What Works,” has few starker applications than the books-in-series that have long afflicted the sci-fi/fantasy genre. Long after whole forests were pulped to make endless “Gor” and “Lensman” books possible (although nothing could make them readable), […]

Thrice Upon a Time!

Our book today is James Hogan’s 1980 time-travel novel Thrice Upon a Time – the one with the, um, interesting cover by Rowena, featuring a suit of armor, a cat, a gorgeous young man, and a big honkin computer. As some of you will know from visiting the Ancient History wing of your local Old […]

James Tiptree, Jr.!

Our book today is another one that doesn’t exist yet, The Collected Stories of James Tiptree, Jr., put out in a big, beautiful deckle-edge brick of a paperback by Random House just in time for Christmas – some Christmas – when every science fiction fan can give it as a present to those one or […]

Passing the Parsing Test in the Penny Press!

Considering the comic, nearly tragic number of books piled all around me, on every flat surface, it sometimes surprises even me to realize how much short work I read. Alongside the innumerable magazine articles that have been fodder for In the Penny Press for the last six years, there are also dozens and dozens of […]

Notes for a Star Trek Bibliography: Last Word from the Team!

We last left Star Trek fiction in a state of what the show’s techno-babble experts might call ‘temporal flux.’ After a long period wandering in the wilderness (sustained only by the manna of sometimes spotty and often manic fan fiction, fanzines, and fan conventions), the old cancelled TV show had at last reached the promised […]

Predictable Trials in the Penny Press!

It was a gruesome, entirely telegraphed one-two punch this week in the Penny Press: first, Esquire had a “How To Be a Man – The Fatherhood Edition,” and then The New Yorker had a double-sized science fiction issue. As the cognoscenti might put it, oy. Horrified – as pretty much anybody would be – by […]

Notes for a Star Trek Bibliography: A New Era Dawns!

After the debut of the big-screen movie adaptation, Star Trek fiction seemed lost.

King of the Sea!

Our book today is Derek Bickerton’s King of the Sea from 1979, when its author was a hale and hearty linguist and rhetorical trouble-shooter who gave off a veritable corona of creativity in virtually everything he did. Bickerton went on to carve out a prestigious name for himself in the world of linguistics, writing a […]

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