Monday, September 05, 2016

Reviewing the Mail: Week of 9/3

Hola, amigos! Welcome to September. This Labor Day Monday, like every other Monday, I'm posting an annotated list of the books that arrived serendipitously in the prior week. As always, I haven't read them yet -- but here's what looks most interesting about them.

Navigators of Dune is the thirteenth Dune novel by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson. Herbert's father, Frank Herbert, only wrote six Dune novels. And Frank took twenty years, while Brian & Kevin have hit their number in only seventeen. That all says something about the American public, and I don't think it's flattering.

But Navigators is the finale of the current trilogy, set 10,000 years before the original Dune -- don't'cha love these space-operatic universes that last for geologic periods of time? -- which chronicles the creation of the third of the three "Great Schools" of the Dune universe. This time out, we get the spice-living Navigators, after the Bene Gesserit and the Mentats of the first two books. Will they survive, or be crushed by the surging Sisterhood? (Hint: check out the earlier-published books in the series for the answer.) Navigators is a Tor hardcover, coming September 13th.

And then there's Overlord, Vol. 2: The Dark Warrior, a novel by Kugane Maruyama and published as a very, very dark hardcover by Yen Press. As the title implies, it's the second in a series, and this series is yet another "ordinary Japanese guy gets himself trapped in an online RPG." But our particular hero is trapped as a badass evil overlord, which is not as bad as some options. And he seems to be settling into his new fantasy-overlord life by this book, though he also somehow manages to both be a sinister figure clad in jet-black armor and sneaking into a city on a secret mission. (Maxing your Sneak skill does pay off!) This is probably what is generally considered a "light novel," for those of you seeking to reduce your intake of calories from novels.

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