Monday, November 04, 2013
21st Century Science Fiction is a major new reprint anthology edited by the powerhouse team of David G. Hartwell and Patrick Nielsen Hayden, who have a pretty strong claim to be the preeminent SF book editors of their respective generations. It contains thirty-four stories originally published between 2003 and 2011, by some of the best writers working, including Neal Asher, Kage Baker, Tony Ballantyne, Elizabeth Bear, Mary Robinette Kowal, Ken Liu, Hannu Rajaniemi, John Scalzi, Karl Schroeder, Jo Walton, Peter Watts, and Liz Williams. It's a doorstop that attempt to show what SF is right now -- or, at least, some of the best things that SF is and has been over the past decade. It's a Tor hardcover, officially on-sale on November 5th.
Also in hardcover from Tor this month is the finale of Beth Bernobich's "River of Souls" trilogy, Allegiance. From the description, I gather this is a sexy fantasy -- comparisons to Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel series, references to "an exotic world where politics and sex go hand in hand," and the word "passion" used prominently -- in a non-traditional epic fantasy setting. If that sounds intriguing, the first book in the series was Passion Play, which is conveniently available in various inexpensive formats right now.
Robert Charles Wilson, who doesn't get as much attention as this thoughtful, smart novels deserve, also has a new book from Tor this month: Burning Paradise, a new big-idea SF novel set in an alternate 2015 where peace and prosperity has reigned since the end of The Great War...because an alien entity, for its own reasons, has bent humanity in the direction of peace and tranquility. As you might expect, at the core of the book is a young person who knows that secret, is in danger, and (I expect) will be instrumental in changing things.
Tor will also publish To Dance with the Devil by Cat Adams in November as a trade paperback. This is the seventh book in the urban fantasy series about Celia Graves: part vampire, part Siren, all bodyguard. And she's in deep trouble in this book, with rival families of magic-users threatening her and what looks like a kidnapping early in the book.
Last for this week is a graphic novel, The Werewolf of New York, by Batton Lash. It's the latest adventure of his series characters, Wolff & Byrd, whose adventures as lawyers to the supernatural (usually under the title Supernatural Law) have been running for more than thirty years in various places -- most recently as a webcomic. This book collects a recent story arc about -- yes, you guessed it! -- a werewolf, and the book itself was published with help from the Kickstarter platform. I've read various Supernatural Law stories over the years -- I had a long run of the '90s comics version of it before my flood in '11 -- and they're always interesting and entertaining, particularly to those with a legal frame of mind. Werewolf of New York is available right now from Exhibit A Press.