Friday, November 13, 2009

Reviewing the Mail: Week of 11/7

Sometime this week, there will be my usual "Reviewing the Mail" post in this space, covering whatever books came in last week. But it's not here yet, because I'm still at Walt Disney World, and have been during every mail delivery this week. So I have no idea what books are waiting for me, though I will get to them just as soon as I can.

For now, you just get the disclaimer: I haven't read any of these books yet, so this isn't really a "review." Some of them I might never read, because of lack of time or interest. But I want to give some attention to all of them, since not everyone has my tastes, and because publicists sent them to me hoping for a little publicity, and I can do that "little," if nothing else.

So, the books I saw the first week of November 2009 are:

Kitchen Princess: Search for the Angel Cake, a light novel by Miyuki Kobayashi with illustrations by Natsumi Ando, which is aparrently related to a manga series also called "Kitchen Princess." It's being published by Del Rey Manga, and was available November 10th.
Night Head: Genesis, Vol. 1 is the first volume (obviously) in a manga series about psychic brothers, tormented and alone because of their powers -- proving once again that Claremont-isms cross all cultural boundaries. Actually, I think this is the brand extension of something that was in another form first -- maybe a movie or TV show. It's credited as "Story by George Iida, Manga by You Higuri," and Del Rey will be popping it into stores on November 24th.

Also from Del Rey is Moyasimon 1: Tales of Agriculture, the first in another manga series by Masayuki Ishikama. It's another one of those stories about a guy going off to college who just wants to be normal -- but, this time, he can see germs with his naked eyes. (It looks like they might talk to him as well.) This looks weird, and I appreciate that. It will also be available November 24th.

The Sapphire Sirens is the latest book in John Zakour's detective-in-a-pulpy-future series -- the seventh overall, if I'm counting correctly. DAW publishes it in mass-market in December.

Also from DAW in December, and their obligatory original anthology for the month, is Spells of the City, edited by Jean Rabe and Martin H. Greenberg. There are eighteen new short urban fantasy stories from the usual DAW-anthology crowd, for those of you who want such a thing.

Also also from DAW in December is a new Valdemar anthology, Changing the World, edited by Mercedes Lackey (who else?). It has sixteen new stories, mostly by the people you'd expect, including one from Misty herself. I read nearly all of the Valdemar novels -- and enjoyed them, and even looked forward to a lot of them -- so no snarkiness from me this time.

The SFnal small press Fantastic Books sent me four of their recent publications:

First is Pennterra, a Judith Moffett novel about Quakers! In! Space! that is here copyrighted 2009, but which I vaguely remember was originally published in the early '90s, probably from Avon.

Secundus is Damien Broderick's The Judas Mandala, a 1982 novel that the back cover claims introduced the term "virtual reality." (Which I suppose is plausible.)

There's another Broderick novel, The Dreaming (originally published with ...Dragons at the end of the title), which has an "updated and revised" text. Oh, that's always a good sign....

Last from Fantastic is Wilson Roberts's The Serpent and the Hummingbird, a novel which appears to be new and an original publication and so about which I have little to say.

The Silver Skull is a novel of intrigue and spycraft in a cold-war-esque Elizabethan era (with Faerie here in the role of the dirty Commies, and our hero Will Swyfte as the James Bond of his time) by Mark Chadbourne; I'd already seen it in bound galleys and had it on the stack to read. Pyr is publishing it November 17th in trade paperback.

First Lord's Fury is the sixth of Jim Butcher's "Codex Alera" novels, of which I have, to date, read none. (I like his contemporary fantasies, but they haven't led me to want to read a secondary-world series by the same writer. It's very hard to interest me in a medievaloid secondary world these days, though -- I must admit.) Ace is publishing this in hardcover on November 24th.

And last for this week was the second collection of Jonathan Rosenberg's webcomic Goats -- The Corndog Imperative. Del Rey will publish this as a trade paperback on December 1st. (I reviewed the first Goats collection, Infinite Typewriters, for ComicMix this past summer, if you want an idea of what the strip is like. Or you could just go read the thing -- it is a webcomic, after all, and you're already on the web.)

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