REVIEW SUMMARY: A look the most recent short fiction selections at Tor.com, acquired and edited by multiple award winning editor Ellen Datlow.
BRIEF SUMMARY: A single woman and her dog attempt to make a new start in hostile mountain country and Emily Dickinson meets a familiar apparition and must use the power of words to put a young boy’s existence to rights.
PROS: Novelette length allows for stories that feel fully formed; a nice touch of mystery in each tale; strong first person points of view; further evidence that Ellen Datlow knows a good story when she reads one.
CONS: The story featuring Emily Dickinson would have more impact with a rudimentary knowledge of her life and work. Magic realism is not everyone’s cup of tea.
BOTTOM LINE: I’ve long respected the work of Ellen Datlow. The efforts she has made along with Terri Windling and others to keep mythic fiction in short and long form in the eyes of the reading public is to be much praised…and thankfully has been. These latest stories were acquired for Tor.com by Ellen Datlow and have her editor’s touch as well. Each are well-structured and interesting tales with strong female protagonists each of whom has a voice that engages the reader. Both stories are long enough to give the reader the experience of having read something with a definitive beginning, middle and end but are short enough to enjoy over lunch or anytime one has a few extra minutes to spare to read.
With A Memory of Light bringing The Wheel of Time to a close this month, over on the Kirkus Reviews Blog today I take a look at four volumes of the Wheel of Time Graphic Novels out from TOR and Dynamite. Adapted by Chuck Dixon and illustrated by Mike S. Miller, Chase Conley, Andie Tong, Marcio Fiorito and Francis Nuguit, these books take us from New Spring to the mid-point of The Eye of the World.
Click here to read more….
New York Times Bestselling Author A.J. Hartley has written mystery-thrillers, middle grade and adult fantasy, historical fiction and Shakespeare novelizations. Born in Northern England, he is currently Distinguished Professor of Shakespeare Studies at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte, where he specializes in the performance history, theory and criticism of Renaissance English drama and works as a director and dramaturg. His middle grade fantasy novel, Darwen Arkwright and Peregrine Pact was just awarded SIBA’s Young Adult Book of The Year this month. His novels include two Darwen books, The Mask Of Atreus, On The Fifth Day, What Time Devours and Tears Of The Jaguar, the Hawthorne Saga fantasy novels, including Act Of Will, MacBeth: A Novel with David Hewson, and several academic and nonfiction books. An active member and contributor to the popular www.magicalwords.net blog along with authors like David B. Coe and Faith Hunter, he can be found online at Facebook, at his website at http://ajhartley.net/ or at www.magicalwords.net.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt talks to A.J. Hartley about his career and his exciting future projects.
SFFWRTCHT: When did you become interested in storytelling and writing and how did you get started? Studying in school? Experimenting? Workshops? Trial and error?
DB Jackson, aka David B. Coe, was born on March 12, 1963, the youngest of four children who all grew up to be writers. David received his undergraduate degree from Brown University and then attended Stanford University as a graduate student in United States history. His novels include Children of Amarid, volume one of The LonTobyn Chronicle. In 1999, The LonTobyn Chronicle was awarded the William L. Crawford Memorial Fantasy Award by theInternational Association for the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA). The Crawford award is given annually to the best book or series by a new fantasy author. Thereafter followed the critically acclaimed Winds of the Forelands, five volumes, and Blood of the Southlands set in the same world as Winds of the Forelands. He’s also written Robin Hood, a tie-in novelization for the Russell Crowe film and is a founding member and proud contributor to the Magical Words blogsite, dedicated to the craft and business of writing. The Magical Words crew collaborated on How To Write Magical Words: A Writer’s Companion from BellaRosa Books. His first urban historical fantasy, Thieftaker, released from TOR this year under the nom de plume, DB Jackson.
David and his wife have two daughters and live on the Cumberland Plateau. He can be found online via Facebook, Twitter as @DavidBCoe and @DBJacksonAuthor or via his websites at http://dbjackson-author.com/ and http://www.sff.net/people/DavidBCoe/.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt talks to DB about his career and his exciting future projects.
SFFWRTCHT: Let’s get the big reveal out of the way first. You are the artist also formerly known as David B. Coe, no symbol, correct?
Dr. Ben Bova has written more than 120 futuristic novels and nonfiction books, and has been involved in science and high technology since the very beginnings of the space age. President Emeritus of the National Space Society and a past president of Science Fiction Writers of America, Dr. Bova received the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Arthur C. Clarke Foundation in 2005, “for fueling mankind’s imagination regarding the wonders of outer space.” His 2006 novel Titan received the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for best novel of the year. In 2008 he won the Robert A. Heinlein Award “for his outstanding body of work in the field of literature.”
A frequent commentator on radio and television and a widely-popular lecturer, he was an award-winning editor and an executive in the aerospace industry. He received the Science Fiction Achievement Award (the “Hugo”) for Best Professional Editor six times. In 2001 Dr. Bova was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He received the 1996 Isaac Asimov Memorial Award; was the 1974 recipient of the E.E. Smith Memorial Award for Imaginative Fiction; the 1983 Balrog Award winner for Professional Achievement; the 1985 Inkpot Award recipient for his outstanding achievements in science fiction. In 2000, he was Guest of Honor at the 58th World Science Fiction Convention, Chicon 2000. Dr. Bova is a multi-Hugo winner as Editor of both Analog and Omni, as well as for his many novels, which include Saturn, Mars, The Sam Gunn stories/novels, The Kinsman Saga, The Asteroid series, and The Orion series, amongst others. His latest novel, Orion and King Arthur, just released from Tor Books. He can be found online via Facebook or his website at http://www.benbova.net.
Bryan Thomas Schmidt talks to Ben about his career, his approach to craft and his exciting future projects for us.
SFFWRTCHT: Where’d your interest in Science Fiction and Fantasy come from?
Today, Bradley P. Beaulieu chats with D.B. Jackson, who is also David B. Coe, the award-winning author of a dozen fantasy novels. His first book as D.B. Jackson, Thieftaker, is out now and Bradley had Five Questions he wanted to ask him.
Here’s what D.B. Jackson had to say…
REVIEW SUMMARY: It may not be minty, but at times the Breath is sweet.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Warbreaker is an epic story of a kingdom in peril, a god that is more AND less than what he seems, a sister’s love and jealousy, magical breath, and an army of the walking dead (and running, and slashing, and stabbing…).
PROS: Magic and a cool blood-thirsty sword, strong characters with conflict.
CONS: Intrigue and betrayal are sold short; antagonists’ motivations are priced well, but I don’t buy.
BOTTOM LINE: Despite a strong start, the story meandered for the rest with some good points and bad, until reaching for the sky towards the end. It’s engaging, enjoyable, but it stumbles.