Short Fiction Friday: Stories The Go Bump in the Night

REVIEW SUMMARY: Four recently published (or reprinted) chilling science fiction tales to read on a dark and stormy night.

MY RATING:

MY REVIEW:
PROS: Interesting comparison between classic and contemporary short sci-fright fiction; satisfying glimpses into two authors’ ongoing literary worlds; solid pacing; good examples to whet the appetite to buy the publications in which the stories are featured.
CONS: Three of the four reviewed stories undoubtedly have a greater impact if the reader is familiar with other stories written in those worlds.
BOTTOM LINE: Seasonally-appropriate science fiction tales from capable authors that work well within their word-count restraints and satisfy the reader looking for science fiction with an eerie edge.

Given that Halloween is not too far away I thought I would spend the next few Fridays featuring science fiction/fantasy shorts of the thrilling variety.  For this week’s selections I chose two stories from the recently released Baen collection In Space No One Can Hear You Scream and two from the October/November 2013 issue of Asimov’s Science Fiction.

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REVIEW SUMMARY: Stories exploring fascinating experiences and characters in worlds stranger than I’ve imagined and yet close enough to home to feel I belonged there.

MY RATING:

BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Like Water for Quarks contains stories with suffocating darkness, inter-dimensional portals, life-altering mailmen, ghosts in the ether, and many more mind blowing elements which champion magical realism as a genre for the imagination.

MY REVIEW:
PROS: Bends reality without losing true connection to characters.
CONS:  At times too weird; disagreed with a couple stories’ message or direction.
BOTTOM LINE: Highly recommended for anyone who enjoys stories that insert magic into everyday life.

Individual story reviews follow…
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Baen Books has created a web-based, science fiction strategy game called Planet Baen, where players get to colonize a new world. It incorporates elements from many different Baen series as part of the normal gameplay, often focusing on a particular series in any given month. (October will features Larry Correia’s Monster Hunters International series. November will see more focus on Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan saga.)

Here’s the coolest part: It’s free to play and as you progress in the game, you win free ebooks from Baen’s ebook site, Baen Ebooks!

So, wanna have some fun and win free eBooks? Then check out Planet Baen!

MUSIC VIDEO: “The Monster Hunter Ballad” by Gray Rinehart

Author/Editor Gray Rinehart has put together this musical tribute to Larry Correia‘s Monster Hunters books published by Baen. It’s called “The Monster Hunter Ballad”…
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Baen Books Limerick Contest: Win Free eBooks!

Baen Books is holding a March limerick contest where winners can receive free eBooks:

Describe your favorite Baen author or novel or character in a riddle limerick that the reader has to solve.

This is a contest in two parts.

EVERYONE who enters the contest by emailing their entries to us will receive an “I READ BAENED BOOKS” button (so be sure to give us your mailing address).

First part of the contest is to submit your riddle limericks (and provide us the answers) to info@baen.com. This part is open through March 31st.

We then pick our favorites, post them on Monday April 5th, and people email their guesses to info@baen.com. This part lasts until April 30st.

Easy example for Part One:

His stature is not very tall

Barrayar thinks him quite small;

If his foes discount

his will to surmount,

It’s they who will take the fall.

(Answer: Miles Vorkosigan – Part Two is people guessing who’s described by the limerick.)

Limericks and answers are due by April 1st, 2010 and should be e-mailed to: info@baen.com. Please be sure to email us your entries; don’t just post them as comments to this note. :)

We’ll post our three favorites on April 5th, and guesses about which character or novel the limericks describe should be emailed to info@baen.com. This portion of the contest runs through April 30th.

Part one winners: The composers of our three winning limericks will receive five free e-books of their choice.

Part two winners: We will draw three names at random from the all the emails sent to us that correctly guess the answers to the limericks. Those folks will also receive five free e-books of their choice. NOTE: Part one winners are not eligible to compete in Part Two, since they have a head start!

The winners will be announced on the Baen website and Facebook page.

See Baen’s Facebook page for details.

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