Sunday, July 23, 2023

Reviewing the Mail : Week of July 22, 2023

Three books this week, all upcoming titles from Tachyon. And here's what I can tell you about them.

A Stranger in the Citadel is a new novel by Tobias Buckell, who I haven't read in much longer than I thought. I believe this is SF, of the medium-future lowish-tech sort. The main character is "the youngest musketress of Ninetha," which implies some level of conflict between polities, and there's also an "outcast librarian," which I think is meant to echo that old post-apocalyptic strain of novels from Fahrenheit 451 and Long Tomorrow and Canticle for Leibowitz. The copy unsubtly declares that books are outlawed, for example, but I have hopes Buckell is doing something beyond the obvious here. This is publishing on October 17th.

The Circumference of the World is a new novel from the prolific Lavie Tidhar, publishing September 5th. As I think is pretty typical for him, it's deeply knowledgeable and playful about SF tropes and history - this one is about a mysterious pulp SF novel, Lode Stars, which may disappear on being read or may be a hoax - or, knowing Tidhar, possibly both.

And last is Things Get Ugly: The Best Crime Stories of Joe R. Lansdale, which, um, collects crime stories by Lansdale that he and his editors think are pretty darn good. (I am actually a fan of descriptive subtitles; the point of a book cover, and metadata in general, is to make it clear what a book is and who might like it.) This one comes out on August 15 and contains nineteen stories that originally appeared all sorts of places, mostly in anthologies, going as far back as 1983.

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