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World Fantasy Awards Nominations: is your choice on the list?
The nominees for the British Fantasy Awards have been announced. The winners will be announced in London, UK on September 23, 2001.
Terry Pratchett Reading List: with the release of Thief of Time, another gem is let loose on an unsuspecting public.
Interviews: Curious about the person behind the writing? Here are some that'll interest you.
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Dance of Knives Dance of Knives by Donna McMahon
reviewed by Victoria Strauss
Set in a 22nd century North America drastically altered by rises in sea levels, catastrophic earthquakes, plague pandemics, and the draconian social engineering of the USA, which sought to solve the problems of poverty and crime by massive relocation of inner-city residents. The city of Vancouver is a microcosm of these changes but also a vital example of recovery, for it's still a busy seaport, and the headquarters for the various industry Guilds which are gradually rebuilding the economy of the Pacific Northwest. Into this chaotic environment comes Klale Renhard, a young Fisher Guildmember tired of her life on boats and looking for something new. Klale is all set to become a crime statistic until she's saved, inexplicably, by Blade, a neurally and behaviourally altered "tool" who is more like a deadly automaton than a human being.

Short Fiction Focus Short Fiction Focus
a column by Nick Gevers
Nick Gevers begins his new monthly column of surveying short fiction. This month's picks are "Isabel of the Fall" by Ian R. Macleod in Interzone, "His Own Back Yard" by James P. Blaylock from Sci Fiction, "Tom Kelley's Ghost" by Steven Popkes in Fantasy & Science Fiction and 4 dazzling short stories from Asimov's.

The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, Fourteenth Annual Collection The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror, Fourteenth Annual Collection edited by Ellen Datlow & Terri Windling
reviewed by Steven H Silver
While the title may conjure up images of unicorns and wizards, ghouls and bloodsuckers, this selection of stories and poems demonstrates that fantasy and horror accommodate a much broader range than stereotypes would indicate. Here are stories containing fantastic and horrific elements without resorting to the stereotypes of epic fantasies and breathing new life into the old myths some of them use as inspiration.

The Year's Best Science Fiction, Eighteenth Annual Collection The Year's Best Science Fiction, Eighteenth Annual Collection edited by Gardner Dozois
reviewed by Nick Gevers
It goes without saying that this is an eminently worthwhile book, one of SF's major institutions, now in its 18th volume. There are many highlights here, selected in spite of certain predictable editorial pitfalls (such as undue obeisance to established names, and an occasional seeming unawareness of how contrived and clotted data-dense Hard SF diction can become). Any year's output of short fiction is bound to be beyond ready summary; perhaps it is best to go by theme, tracing skeins of trend through it.

Eric Van Lustbader
The Ring of Five Dragons The Ring of Five Dragons by Eric Van Lustbader
reviewed by Wayne MacLaurin
This is the first of an epic fantasy series titled The Pearl. It centres on the conflict between a technologically advanced, space-faring race, the V'ornn, and the Kundalan, a spiritual race, subject to the latest V'ornn colonization. We are introduced to the main characters and the book quickly tears itself into a frenzy of sub-plots and twisted misdirection as the curtains sweep open, revealing a vast expanse of story.

The Ring of Five Dragons The Ring of Five Dragons by Eric Van Lustbader
an excerpt
"When they were fifteen years old, Giyan and Bartta found a lorg. It was hiding, as lorgs are wont to do, beneath a large flat rock of a golden hue lying like a wart on the belly of a bone-dry gully. Konara Mossa, their Ramahan guardian and teacher, had told them to keep a sharp eye out for lorgs, for lorgs preferred the thin, kuello-fir-scented air that drifted along the shoulders of the Djenn Marre."

The Free Lunch The Free Lunch by Spider Robinson
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Mike wants to go underground in the Dreamworld theme park in the worst way, and he's just the kind of smart kid who will actually succeed. What he finds on the other side of the "cast only" signs is going to be nothing like what he expects. He and Annie, his new guardian in Dreamworld, will uncover a mysterious situation that threatens to pull the entire park down around them. If things go as wrong as they possibly can, the Earth may be the ultimate casualty.

Babylon 5.1: Televison Reviews Babylon 5.1
TV reviews by Rick Norwood
Last issue, Rick recommended Witchblade. Now, he's had a chance to watch a few more episodes. He is pleased he did. In this column, he's got a few thoughts to share, he offers some pointers, a bit of the series' history along with a guide to the episodes.

Prophecy Prophecy by Elizabeth Haydon
reviewed by William Thompson
Regardless of how one may view this ongoing series, there is little question that the author knows how to write, displaying assurance in her descriptive passages, as well as at times the deft turn of phrase. One might only wish that the author's admitted strengths were directed to the benefit of a tale less conventional and less bound to indulgent romance.

Savior Savior by Nancy Kress
reviewed by Trent Walters
The plot unravels an episodic future history where industrial technology finally breaks civilization down but where human ingenuity through quantum computers and nanotechnology turns civilization back around. The episodic drama is more reminiscent of Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars trilogy than the standard story plot. The episodes don't always seem to direct the reader toward a deeper understanding of the story's thematic goal.

The Shadow Hunter The Shadow Hunter by Michael Prescott
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Abby Sinclair has just about the most dangerous job you can envision. Contracting her services out to security firms, she takes the inside track to run stalkers to ground. Against one of the most dangerous and unpredictable of all criminals she goes undercover, moving in and befriending the stalker, preparing the profile and risk assessment that is essential to keeping the client/victim alive.

Gormenghast Gormenghast
a DVD review by Georges T. Dodds
Gothic Fantasy is the term usually applied to the Gormenghast Trilogy, particularly the first two books Titus Groan and Gormenghast, which are the basis of the BBC production. But, as Georges points out, Gormenghast is only a trilogy because Mervyn Peake died of Parkinson's disease before he could write more and he intended the series to chronicle the entire life of the title character. The story was most influenced by Peake witnessing the huge socio-economic disparity in early 20th century China, and by the horrors of WWII, particularly the Belsen concentration camp.

Gormenghast Gormenghast
a give-away contest
77 generations built the kingdom of Gormenghast... Will one kitchen boy bring it down?

We're having a give-away contest. To help promote it, we've built pages about the plot, Mervyn Peake, the cast and the characters. If you're among the first to correctly answer the questions, you could win a DVD (Region 1) copy of Gormenghast, courtesy of BBC America Shop.

Gormenghast Gormenghast
a DVD review by Rick Norwood
This is the greatest gothic film ever made. It is fantastic without fantasy, opulent, decadent, baroque, bizarre, beautifully acted, gloriously filmed. The genius is in the characters; John Sessions as Prunesquallor deserves special mention, then there is Steerpike, the charming monster, who smiles and smiles and is yet a villain -- and why shouldn't he be, considering the way he is treated.

Geeks With Books Geeks With Books
a column by Rick Klaw
Rick Klaw gives us a look at how things work from behind the counter of a book store. This time he discusses signing etiquette. Being the helpful, opinionated guy that he is, he came up with a few guidelines that he thought he'd share. And guest reviewer Neal Barrett, Jr. gives us his opinion on the cover for The Essential Ellison.

Absolute Magnitude, Issue #15 Absolute Magnitude, Issue #15
reviewed by Lisa DuMond
Short, sweet, and packed with quality material -- this magazine is one to keep an eye on, to keep abreast of the state of science fiction. Surely the strangest selection here is Sawicki's "Invisible Friends," but if you are familiar with his writing this comes as no surprise...

Interlopers Interlopers by Alan Dean Foster
reviewed by Peter D. Tillman
Archaeologist Cory Westcott deciphers the recipe for a Chachapoyan (pre-Incan) shamanistic potion. He has it brewed to try it but nothing much happens -- he gets terrible stomach cramps -- until he passes a university building and sees a raging fire in his colleague's lab and he starts seeing weird creatures, with teeth & tentacles, in every tree and rock. Hungry creatures... that no one else can see!

Second Looks

The Seedling Stars The Seedling Stars by James Blish
reviewed by Rich Horton
The central theme uniting the stories of this episodic novel is that humanity will colonize other planets not by adapting the environment of those planets to men (terraforming), nor by avoiding the environment of other planets (living in domes, say), but by adapting men to alien environments. By so doing, man will "seed" the stars. Representing some of the author's very best work, he takes a striking idea and develops it fully, in the best tradition of pure SF.

Ralph 124C 41+ Ralph 124C 41+ by Hugo Gernsback
reviewed by Neil Walsh
This novel is definitely worth a read if you are at all interested in the roots of science fiction in the 20th century, or if you are curious about how the future may have looked from an SF perspective in the early part of the 20th century. But once you've read it, you'll also understand why the author is remembered for his contribution to the genre as a magazine editor rather than as a writer.


The Arthurian Companion The Arthurian Companion by Phyllis Ann Karr
reviewed by William Thompson
Growing out of and originally researched for a role-playing game, the original edition of this companion was "godfathered... into print" by the game's creator. Even in this second edition, at times the author's extrapolations of certain figures, actions and behaviours read as if taken from a role play manual. While the book is not without merit, true Arthurian scholars will certainly raise their eyes from dusty study, shouting loudly foul.

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