June 2003
© 2003 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu
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June 2003 US Releases by Ernest Lilley                                             Last Month / Next Month

Index: Ace · Avon/Eos Baen · Bantam/Spectra/Dell · The Black Library · DAW · Del Rey · Golden Gryphon · Harper Collins · Forge · 4W8W · Lucas · Pocket · Roc Scholastic · Star Trek · Star Wars · Tor · Warner/Aspect · Wizards of the Coast · Art/Reference · Other Publishers

Art/Reference

The Girl's Got Bite: The Original Unauthorized Guide to Buffy's World,
Completely Revised and Updated Through Season Seven
by Kathleen Tracy

(St. Martin's Press Trade $15 06/01/03)

Everything you always wanted to know about America's favorite teen vampire slayer. And much, much, more.

Star Wars Super Collector's Wish Book (2nd ed)
by Geoffrey T. Carlton

(Collector Books HCVR $30 05/01/03)  
More than you could ever want to know about Star War's collectables…unless you're serious about them, in which case you can never know enough. Right?

Avon/EOS

Roma Eterna by Robert Silverberg
(Avon/Eos HCVR $26 06/01/03)  
In this Alternate History, the Jews never escaped Eygpt and as a result, neither Christianity nor Islam arise, leaving Rome to survive for another two millennia. We're planning a review of this interesting story in an upcoming issue.

Baen Books

Anguished Dawn by James Hogan, James Baen (ed)
(Baen HCVR $26 06/01/03)
This sequel to Hogan's Cradle of Saturn owes a literary debt to Philip Wylie's When World's Collide (1933) or more accurately, its sequel: After World's Collide, as the story picks up after the devastation of Earth and the few remaining humans have settled around Saturn. As if escaping the destruction back on Earth wasn't enough, more than one faction of humanity made it off the mother sphere, and as frequently happens in Hogan's novels, conflict arises between the forces of reasonable scientist/engineer types and evil politico/dictator types.

Dead on my Feet by Wm. Mark Simmons
(Baen HCVR $24 06/01/03)

 In this sequel to One Foot in the Grave (1996), contemporary vampire Chris Haim has more problems to deal with than where his next meal is coming from. He's also got to contend with engineered biowar viruses, psychics and phonies amid the New Orleans voodoo community, vampire turf wars and an ex girlfriend werewolf that's threatening to put the bite on his new flame.

E. Godz by Robert Asprin
(Baen HCVR $17 05/01/03)
After Edwina Godz has incorporated all the loose sorcerers she can find and made a powerful corporation out of disorganized shamans, she doesn't find that it's made her happy…just the opposite. She'd like to get off the stage, but doesn't know how to divvy up the family business between her squabbling offspring, without being sure it would spell disaster. So she lets them try to outdo each other…in business and in wizardry.

Future Imperfect by Keith Laumer
 (Baen Trade $14 05/01/03)
 Laumer's sense of humor comes through loud and clear in this collection of novellas about resourceful guys doing the best they can in a collection of futures far from perfect. Baen's doing a great job bringing pulse quickening collections like this out for new generations of readers.

Diplomatic Immunity by Lois McMaster Bujold (review)
Baen PPBK $7.99 06/03/03

Miles is off on a pleasure trip with his new wife, with the next generation of Vorkosigan's brewing away in a Betan incubator, when he gets sucked into a police procedural in space in order to extricate Barrayar's interests at a remote space station. Along the way he meets some old friends, frets over impending fatherhood, and has the usual grievous injury done him by the author. It's more fun that not having a Miles story to read, but he really needs to take a vacation and let some of Lois' other characters carry the ball while he reconciles with his creator.

Spirits White as Lightning by Mercedes Lackey
(Baen PPBK $7.99 05/01/03)

 Music and magic continue to mix in the fifth volume of the Bedlam's Bard series for Eric Banyon, Julliard student in our world and Sir Eric, knight and bard, in the Elvenlands.

 Random House: Ballantine - Bantam - Del Rey- Spectra - Lucas Books

Dark Angel: After the Dark by Max Allan Collins
(Ballantine PPBK $7 06/03/03)

Dark Angel, TV's cyberpunk fem, is back in a new novel by Max Collins, not to be confused with the main character, also Max. When Max (DA) finds her friend and geek/hunk cohort Logan has been hiding a major secret all this time, she's not happy about it, but that doesn't stop her from being really unhappy about his kidnapping, or launching herself into the lair of her nemesis: the Breeding Cult, to get him back.

 Hulk:Movie Adaptation by Peter David (Ballantine PPBK $7 06/01/03) He's big, he's green…and he's coming to a screen near you. Want to hear the inner dialog that gets lost in the rampage? Screenplay adaptation star Peter David fills in the details.

 The Years of Rice and Salt by Kim Stanley Robinson (Bantam Spectra PPBK $8 06/03/03) Released in Hardcover in Feb '02, this millennia spanning tale of the World as it might have been, had the Black Death consumed all of Europe, rather than the sufficiently appalling third of the population it claimed during the fourteenth century. Christianity forgotten, Islam and Buddhism rise dominate the world and a different way of life emerges, but the truths that are written in the universe itself will still be discovered, and humanity will still ask questions. Robinson has done what many others might have taken a series of books to accomplish, and he's done it very well.

 The Mirror of Her Dreams by Stephen R. Donaldson (Del Rey / Random House Trade $15.95 06/03/03) begins the a new fantasy saga and introduces us to the the land of Mordant, under siege by monsters and weakened by madness. As in the Thomas Covenant stories (and in the grand tradition of fantasy) a hero is drawn from our world to save Mordant. A Man rides Through by Stephen R. Donaldson (Del Rey / Random House Trade $16 06/03/03) finishes the two book arc begun in The Mirror of Her Dreams. Stephen R. Donaldson's latest fantasy world is a place where mirrors are for magic, not makeup, and though the first book ended with a cliffhanger, the second book delivers a satisfying conclusion.

 Devlin's Honor by Patricia Bray (Spectra PPBK $5.99 06/03/03) Due to the perversity of gods, Devlin of Duncaer has become the champion of the people that conquered his own. Now he has to return to his homeland to seek sword missing for generations, believed to be more myth than substance, except that Devlin knows where it rests, a relic of the slaughter of his own folk.

Golden Gryphon Press -

Harper Collins Publishers: Greenwillow Books - The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett (Harper Collins HCVR $17 05/01/03) Armed with only her frying pan, Tiffany must journey through the shifting dreamscape of Fairyland to rescue her brother. Fortunately she's a fledgling witch, and more so, she has the help of the Wee Free Men, a band of blue, six inch tall sheep thieves (see  Pat Nash's Review).

Penguin Putnam: Ace  - Daw - ROC    

Redemption Ark by Alistair Reynolds (Ace / Penguin Putnam HCVR $24.95 06/01/03) Continuing in the saga of Chasm City and Revelation Space, Redemption Ark brings fans of Alastair Reynolds a new chapter in this exciting and well conceived story. Fifty years after mankind has accidentally unleashed the Inhibitors, alien killing machines designed to wipe out intelligent life, our time is quickly running out. A cache of doomsday weapons might hold the answer, but then again, they might have questions of their own. Alistair Reynolds is one of the brightest stars in the re-emergent field of Hard SF Space Opera, and you should not hesitate to pick this story up at any point along the way. (see our interview  )

In the Forests of Serre by Patricia A. McKillip (Ace / Penguin Putnam HCVR $23 06/03/03) Prince Ronan of Serre probably didn't think things could get much worse, but he was very, very wrong. On the way home from war, still stunned from the loss of his wife and child, adding a witches curse for trampling a hen in the road seems pretty trivial, but of course it's anything but. When his father proposes an arraigned marriage to a beautiful princess and he slips away through an enchanted forest, things really get interesting.

The Gathering Dark: A Novel of the Shadow Saga by Christopher Golden (Ace / Penguin Putnam PPBK $6.99 06/24/03) This story heralds the return of the Shadow Saga and Peter Octavian a mage who has transcended vampire origins and now stands against a supernatural onslaught.

Something from the Nightside by Simon R. Green (Ace / Penguin Putnam PPBK $6.5 05/27/03) Nightside: a little piece of hell on earth. A square mile of darkness in the middle of London, where it's always 3 AM and myths and monsters lurk around every corner. It's the perfect setting for this fantasy noir detective story about a PI looking for the daughter of a wealthy woman, back in the one place he said he'd never go - home.

  The Devil in the Dust (Outremer, Book 1) by Chaz Brenchley (Ace / Penguin Putnam PPBK $6.5 05/27/03) Here's your chance to get in on a new fantasy cycle with the first two books now in paperback. Change is coming to a desert kingdom whose rule is enforced by warrior priests know ans "Ransomers". The story begins when a Ransomer in training finds that he must follow his conscience rather than the church's edicts. In Tower of The King's Daughter (Outremer, 2) by Chaz Brenchley (Ace / Penguin Putnam PPBK $6.50 06/24/03) having left his order and his love, the knight Marron follows the djinni Khaldor to leave behind the city of Roq de Rançon as well.

War of the Flowers by Tad Williams (Daw / Penguin Putnam HCVR $25 05/06/03) Thirty year old rocker Theo Vilmos is hitting the skids. Seeking refuge in in a family cabin in Northern California, he comes on an old manuscript written by an ancestor who claims to have gone to magical world of Faerie and down the rabbit hole he goes.

Zandru's Forge by Marion Zimmer Bradley and Deborah J. Ross (Daw / Penguin Putnam HCVR $25 06/01/03) Book Description: This brand-new novel of Darkover-a direct sequel to The Fall of Neskaya and the second book in the Clingfire trilogy-is the result of the late Marion Zimmer Bradley's collaboration with Deborah J. Ross. Set in the era of The Hundred Kingdoms, a lawless time of war and unrest on the planet Darkover, it is the epic tale of a legendary friendship forged between King and Keeper. A friendship that would ultimately bring about the end of all long distance weapons-and the beginning of a new destiny for Darkover…

Craven Moon by Billie Sue Mosiman (Daw / Penguin Putnam PPBK $7 06/03/03) Book Description: "The Bram Stoker Award-nominated author brings to life the final, fateful struggle of a man torn between his human longings. . .and his vampiric cravings. A destiny that could mean the extinction of all vampires."

Women Writing Science Fiction As Men by Mike Resnick (ed) (Daw / Penguin Putnam PPBK $7 06/03/03) I think collection deserves a read, though it may merit a few mild slams as well…is there any mention of James Tiptree (Alice B. Sheldon)? Did they even consider a woman editing as a man rather than Mike? Also, the title is misleading, a s the stories are actually from the male viewpoint, and the author's gender is irrelevant. Still, I wonder what the contributors would have said if they were asked the complement of Melvin Udall's question in as good as it gets: Receptionist: How do you write women so well? Melvin: Easy. I think of a man, and I take away reason and accountability (of course, he then falls for Helen Hunt's character, who is pretty much the opposite of the women he writes about.). Laurie J. Marks will be reviewing this next month and she assures me that it's a good collection, so don't be put off my my rant.

Across the Nightingale Floor (Tales of the Otori, Book One) by Lian (Riverhead Books Trade $14 06/01/03) From Publishers Weekly: Mystical powers and martial arts rampage through this pseudo-Japanese story, the first of a projected trilogy by newcomer Hearn, with an abandon that's head spinning. From the entrance of the 16-year-old hero, Takeo, as he is about to be swatted down by a mounted horseman and the way he can become invisible or make a duplicate of himself when he needs to, to the head-rolling decapitations that follow interminably, the impossible becomes the semi plausible.

A Silence in the Heavens (Mechwarrior Dark Age, 4) by Martin Delrio (Roc / Penguin Putnam PPBK $7 06/03/03) Good guys defending the gateway to Earth in a failing republic. Bad guys with power on their mind. Folks with a planet of their own to protect. The clash of giant robots overcomes any possible plot.

Messiah Node by Lyda Morehouse (Roc / Penguin Putnam PPBK $7 06/03/03) Angels, Artificial Intelligence and the end of the world…as we know it. This is the third book in Morehouse's unique trilogy, about archangels, nanotech warfare, the search for the next messiah and the beginning of the Messianic Age. Living with free will isn't easy, as any earthbound angel can tell you, but it beats the alternative.

The Glasswrights Test by Mindy L. Klasky (Roc / Penguin Putnam PPBK $7 06/01/03) Since she was responsible (in part) for their banishment to Brianta, Rani Trader is surprised when the Glasswrights Guild calls for her to demonstrate her skill and test for master status. She should be more worried than surprised, but swhe'll learn.

Scholastic

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Book 5) by J.K. Rowling (Scholastic HCVR $30 06/21/03) Pat Nash braved the lines (and the party) to pick up a copy of the latest Potter publication and went missing for the next twelve hours while she devoured the 896 page tome. Pop over to her review and find out what she said upon regaining consciousness (see review).

Simon&Schuster: Star Trek (Pocket Books) The Black Library (Warhammer/40k)

St. Martins Press: Forge - Thomas Dunne

Kingdom River by Mitchell Smith (Forge HCVR $26 06/23/03) Hanging on in a near future ice-age, Sam Monroe is the commander of a small but tough warrior nation caught between Kingdom River, a nation that had been the Southern US, and an Khanate, an empire of nomads sweeping down from the Bering straights. In order for his nation to survive it must join forces with Kingdom River, but Sam must find a way to keep it from being absorbed without a trace. I must have been asleep at the wheel when Snowfall, the first book int Mitchell Smith's post-apocalyptic trilogy came out last February, but it's out in paperback now (amazon.com) if you want to catch up.

Dawn Over Kitty Hawk by Walter J. Boyne (Forge HCVR $25 05/01/03) It's not SF, but how could I pass it up in this centenial year of flight? The author brings to life both the people and the time that gave us flight. (see Lorraine Marsh's review).

Point of Honour by Madeline Robins (Forge HCVR $25 05/01/03) In an Alternate Regency London, Sarah Tolerance ran away with her brother's fencing-master, but when he dies, everyone expects her to earn her way like all fallen women, on her back. Not bloody likely. Like other noted Londoners of fiction, she'd rather sleuth than, well, she'd rather sleuth. (see Victoria McManus's review)

Coyote Cowgirl by Kim Antieau (Forge HCVR $25 06/01/23) Have you ever read Coyote Cowgirl by Kim Antieau? This is a wonderful, witty, and insightful tale about food, family, love, betrayal, shamanism and food in the Southwest. Did I mention the food? Go read my review this issue…or better yet, just read the book. (see review)

Orb

General Practice: A Sector General Omnibus by James White (Orb Trade $20 05/01/03) Book Description: At Sector General, anything can happen-and frequently does. In this vast hospital in the depths of space, the thousands of staff, human and alien both, have a single mission: to care for all patients, of all species. For decades, these dramas of humanity and humor have commanded a following among science fiction readers. Now, in a single omnibus, the seventh and eighth volumes of the series-Code Blue: Emergency and The Genocidal Healer-return to print, along with an introduction by John Clute.

Queen City Jazz by Kathleen Ann Goonan (Orb Trade $15 06/02/03) Goonan's first novel, Queen City Jazz was a stunning debut. In a nanotech rich future a girl raised by reconstructionist Shakers find that the simple life she's been raised on doesn't explain the complex world outside or the complexities of her own makeup. Dystopic but fascinating.

Tor

Mistress of Dragons by Margaret Weis (Tor Hardcover $25.95 05/03/03) Though the humans don't know it, the Parliament of Dragons, forbids either the meddling in human affairs or the eating of tasty human meat. When a dragon breaks the pact and samples manly morsels, they send Draco, a dragon who can shift into human form, to ferret out the foul beast. The first book in the Dragonvald trilogy, Weis's fans will be rewarded by strong characterization and and exciting storyline (see Rob Archer's review).

The Wraiths of Will and Pleasure by Storm Constantine (Tor Galley $28 06/01/03) Set between the first two books in the author's Wraeththu trilogy, our reviewer (Iain Emsley) says: For so many writers, the return to a world and characters tends to herald a novel which is comfortably familiar yet lacks spark or vitality. Storm has come back to her own with a gloriously gothic, passionate and romantic novel, one which has a need to tell its story. (see Iain's review)

Wolfskin by Juliet Marillier (Tor Galley $26 06/01/03) From Publishers Weekly: "The clash of cultures and the limits of loyalty form the thematic framework of Marillier's compelling new stand-alone fantasy. Readers familiar with the author's Sevenwaters trilogy (Daughter of the Forest, etc.) will feel comfortable with the Dark Ages setting. "

Berserker's Star by Fred Saberhagen (Tor HCVR $25 06/01/03) Pilot Harry Silver, is back to battle berserkers in the latest Berserker novel. Though he's dispatched his share of the sentient killing machines, and is known across the galaxy, that's not always a good thing, especially since the Space Force is understandably annoyed about the superweapon he stole. Off on adventure to help a woman find her lost husband, and make a lot of money in the process, Harry finds himself at the center of more intrigue than he counted on.

Saturn by Ben Bova (Tor HCVR $25 06/12/03) Ben Bova continues his grand tour of the Solar System with a trip to the ringed planet. Unfortunately, the novel is more about life inside a giant can filled with a painful mixture of scientists, zealots, and political dissidents. I expect it's the foundation of a better book yet to come. (see review)

Not Really the Prisoner of Zenda (A Guardians of the Flame Novel) by Joel Rosenberg (Tor HCVR 06/03/03 $24.95 ) is really a pretty good book. The the original trio of soldiers and friends is down to only Pirijil, and possibly the shape changed Kethol, which would seem to put a damper on their original plan of founding the Three Swords Inn. Kethol took on another man's shape to prevent the Barony Keranahan from falling into evil hands…but now he has to run it, when he'd much rather be back in the woods and a soldier at arms. Well, there are some compensations, like being able to woo the high-born Leria and there's duty to attend to, in the form of thwarting the odd assassination. Though often amusing, Rosenburg has crafted a deeper story in here as well, though not at the cost of the reader's enjoyment.

A Stainless Steel Trio by Harry Harrison (Tor Trade $18 06/01/03) Now in a trade omnibus, Harry Harrison's beloved con artist/soldier//undercover agent gets born, drafted, and learns to sing the blues in the three novels that put him onto the map as one of "SF's most beloved Rouges".

Going For Infinity by Poul Anderson (Tor Trade $15 06/01/03) from our review: There were a few stories in here that I hadn't read before, and a few that I'd forgotten Poul Anderson wrote. To find them here, and to have the author frame them for me against his career, the march of science, and the larger field of SF was to rediscover them anew, and to enjoy and appreciate them as much as when I first read them. (see review)

The Elementals by Morgan Llywellyn (Tor Trade $15 06/05/03) Acclaimed Irish historian and fantasist Morgan Llywellyn has spun many a tale of Ireland and the Celts, and now she tells a time spanning tale framed by the four elementals, Water, Fire, Earth, and Air and four fates that mankind has (or will) endure from the melting of the Ice Caps to flood Atlantis, to the gasping breaths of an ozone depleted world of tomorrow.

Warner/Aspect -  

Received from Other Publishers (We try to at least list all the books we receive, though small press often does not arrive in its month of publication.)

Assassin's Vendetta by J. R. Urie (Trafford Trade $30 06/01/03) Book Description: In a universe where Magic and Technology exist as one, there is only one rule - the survival of the fittest. In the first novel, Assassin's Vendetta, Matherion, as a teenager, horrifically watches his father get shot killed, older sister get raped and shot as well, and then watches his mother go through the metahuman transformation only to die. Attempting to survive on their own, he sees his younger sister shot by a rivaling gang member on their way to find jobs. With boiling rage inside him, a Duke persuades him to enroll into a secret assassination academy. Ten years passed and after his final studies, he becomes released from the academy to receive his first hit job, but each time he notices a woman awfully looks like his younger sister. Once he realizes that she is alive, he attempts to get out of the entangled web of crime, but can he escape with his sister without running into another assassin or interference from the Duke?

A Martian Poet in Siberia by Duncan Hunter (1stBooks Library Trade $14 12/01/02) The author was born in English born and lives in Hong Kong, where he teaches English. He combines of science, Gaian theory, poetry and his interest in Mars. His protagonist travels from future Mars to an unpopulated Earth to re-colonize the warmed planet.

Gettysburg: A novel of the Civil War by Newt Gingrich, William Forstchen (Thomas Dunne Books HCVR $25 06/01/03) Newt Gingrich and William Forstchen join forces to create an Alternate History stemming from a Confederate Victory at Gettysburg that becomes possible by Robert E. Lee's taking the reigns of the Army of Northern Virginia, rather than leaving it to his high command. As a result, he manages to outmaneuver the Yankee forces and force a victory for the South. Newt's southerner's come off as wise and his northerners as cranky…but maybe that's fair, even if I am a Yankee. (Rob Archer will review this book in an upcoming issue)

The Guin Saga: Book One: The Leopard Mask by Kaoru Kurimoto, Alexander O. Smith (Translator), Elye J. Alexander (Translator) (Vertical HCVR $23 06/01/03) With 85 installments and 25 million copies sold in Japan, the Guin Saga can justly claim to be one of the world's most popular fantasy sagas. Now, with the release of an English edition of the first book in the series, we can join the ranks of loyal readers. Envisioned as a 100 installment series, it is the story of a creature that wakes in the forest with a man's body and a leopard's head, and no memory of who or what he is.

Titles are (hopefully) linked to Amazon.com pages for each book and buying through our links to support our site costs. Amazon offers these titles at up to 30% off and gives free shipping for orders over $25. If you were to pop over to Amazon.com and do a search of all the SF and Fantasy they have listed for being published this month, you'd come back with more titles than moonwatcher could shake a stick at, so we mostly limit ourselves to what we've actually received from publishers. If you've sent us something and it didn't get in here, feel free to mention it to us at: usbooks@sfrevu.com.

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© 2003 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu
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