Monday, July 04, 2016

Reviewing the Mail: Week of 7/2

For my American readers, remember to be particularly patriotic today, so as to live up to our international reputation. Being patriotic may include ignoring the rest of the world, having unsupportable and incorrect opinions about the supposedly unique qualities of the USA, and general assholishness. (It doesn't have to include any of those things, but they are traditional for US patriotism.)

For the rest of you, all I can say is that this will pass, like everything else. And, if you're looking for something to distract you, perhaps I can interest you in these books that arrived on my doorstep over the last week?

I haven't read them, and can't promise what I say about them below is entirely true, but it all looks right. And, so, without further ado, here are some books....

The Dinosaur Knights is the new novel from Victor Milan, continuing the series begun in The Dinosaur Lords, and it's a far-future SF novel disguised as a fantasy. In case you're wondering, the title is meant to be taken literally: it's set on a medievaloid alien world in which knights ride dinosaurs. There's also some remnants of Galactic tech in the form of the Grey Angels -- some kind of androids, I think -- who have just returned after a millennium of so of isolation from local society with intent to reap all elements of the current society that doesn't fit into their plans. (And that seems to include "most of it.") Aside from the dinosaurs, it reminds me vaguely of David Weber's remnants-of-humanity-hiding-on-an-alien-world series. But of course, the dinosaurs are the really kewl bit. This is a Tor hardcover, available July 5th.

Coming a week later from Tor -- also in hardcover -- is Wesley Chu's Time Siege, the sequel to Time Salvager. It contains more time-travel adventures, in which all of the characters from the first book (which I didn't read) continue to do stuff, some of which the flap copy explains. Chu is well-respected and looks to be one of the current generation of rising SF writers, so readers less jaded and distracted than me would do well to take a look at this.

And then I have a couple of manga from Vertical: I'll start up with the series launch, Immortal Hounds, Vol. 1 by  Ryo Yasohachi. It's a hyper-violent story of an alternate universe when humans never really die -- if they get sick or injured, they just commit suicide and immediately come back to live in good health. But now there's a new disease called Resurrection Deficiency Syndrome -- an awesome name for a disease, by the way -- spread by Vectors, which leads to big battles between the mysterious Escape Artists who protect the Vectors and the Anti-Vector Police Task Force who seem to be our heroes. Expect lots of stylish violence and some shouted philosophy.

Also from Vertical is Mitsubisa Kuji's Wolfsmund, Vol. 7, continuing the very violent and adult retelling of the story of William Tell. (See my review of the third volume for some more background.)

And last for this week is a relic from the past: Ghostbusters, a novel by Nancy Holder based on the screenplay (by Katie Dippold and Paul Feig) for the new movie of the same name. I know! A novelization published in 2016? I feel like I've fallen into a time vortex, because these things weren't selling well ten or fifteen years ago, and I'm hard-pressed to figure out who actually wants the novel of a movie that will be out on video in three or four months. But, if that's you, Nancy Holder is a fine writer, so I expect she did a good job turning this  movie into a book. And I am looking forward to this movie...but, still I'd rather wait and see it than read about the things I'll see.

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