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US Books Received- 09/2005  Next Month / Last Month
In order to provide timely reviews, we prefer to receive Advance Reader Copies of books when possible. Send books to Gayle Surrette / Editor c/o SFRevu 16440 Baden Westwood Road Brandywine, MD 20613

Ace

Scion of the Serpent : Anok, Heretic of Stygia Volume I (Age of Conan Hyborian Adventures: Anok, Heretic of Stygia) by J. Steven York (Ace 27 September, 2005 / $6.99) - Book Description: Anok Wati, a young warrior of the streets, strikes a pact with an ancient and forbidden god who gives him a seemingly impossible task. To unravel the mysteries of the past and avenge his father's death, Anok must join the sinister cult of the snake-god Set--and destroy them from within.

Ace Books

Song in the Dark (Elrod, P. N. Vampire Files.) by P. N. Elrod (Ace Books 06 September, 2005 / $24.95) - Song in the Dark, the tenth of P.N. Elrod's The Vampire Files series opens in Chicago 1938 with the continuing saga of Jack Fleming. Jack is still recovering from sadistic torture he suffered in the last book at the hands of Hog Bristow. But he's got a club to run, a mob to manage while Gordy is recovering from being shot, and the East Coast mob bosses want revenge for the death of Bristow. It wouldn't be so bad except for the seizures, the blackouts, and the over-powering need for blood. Things are not going well when a vampire feels out of control... (see review)

Ace Trade

Bear Daughter by Judith Berman (Ace Trade 06 September, 2005 / $15.00) - Bear Daughter by Judith Berman is a fresh and innovative piece of writing. The author has escaped from the overused cultures of Medieval Europe, China, and Ancient Egypt to create a society based on the Amerinds of the Pacific Northwest. Cloud, the main character, is a young bear who wakes up as a human girl of twelve. Cloud finds life as a girl much different; the world of sharp smells and dull sight is replaced by a world of clear pictures and indistinct odors. Cloud's stepfather Rumble was willing to tolerate a bear, but tries to kill the human girl. Her Aunt Glory teaches Cloud to act like a human; to walk on two legs, to use her hands; to eat sitting up instead of crouched over her food, to cook and to spin and weave and all the other skills proper to a young woman. (see review)

Amazon.com

The Inheritance by Robin Hobb (Amazon.com Sept 2005 / ) - No, gentle reader, you are not mistaken: this is a review of a short story. Hobb has added to her Bingtown traders fantasy milieu by developing this short story for Amazon.com. Amazon has launched an amazing new service--product--business thingy that, in the way iTunes and its integrated music store revolutionized how millions of people buy music, has the potential to change the way readers find and buy short fiction. "The Inheritance" is an excellent story in which Hobb tells the tale of a young woman who receives less than she might have wished after the death of a relative. (see review)

Annick Press

Mimus by Lilli Thal (Annick Press 03 September 2005 / $9.95) - Book Description:

Mimus is as luminous and entertaining as Cornelia Funke's Thief Lord or Inkheart, yet Lilli Thal has created a dramatic and spellbinding universe all her own. The dark Middle Ages jump to life in blazing color in this world of adventure and imagination.

Two mighty kingdoms are engaged in endless, merciless war, but change appears imminent. King Philip is meeting his archenemy, King Theodo, to sign a peace treaty. But King Philip and his men are tricked and consigned to the squalid dungeons of King Theodo's castle. Soon, his son, 12-year-old Prince Florin, is lured to the castle, where the same horror awaits him.

On a whim, King Theodo decides to make the captive crown prince his second Fool, trained by Mimus, an enigmatic, occasionally spiteful, and unpredictable court jester. To add to Florin's misery, he and Mimus are fed a daily portion of gruel, forced to live in a dark, damp tower, and required to entertain the court on demand. But events ultimately turn for Florin and the other captives. They escape and it is Mimus's intervention that helps make it possible.

Mimus is a stunning novel that will take readers in its grip and hold them until the last page is turned. Through the brilliant rhymes, jokes, and wordplay of Mimus, the unceasing action and compelling events are sprinkled with lightness and humor.

(Source: Annick Press)

Aspect

Orphan's Destiny by Robert Buettner (Aspect 01 September, 2005 / $6.99) - Orphan's Destiny is the sequel to Buettner's first novel, Orphanage. It continues the story of Jason Wander, orphan and hero of Earth's first interstellar war. After surviving on Ganymede, Wander, and the remaining forces, are picked up and brought back to a hero's welcome on Earth. But Wander returns to an Earth changed by the war and busted by the effort to put together the single strike force it could manage to retaliate against the invaders. Wander finds himself an anachronism before his time, trotted out for show and tell by a government that would just as soon as dump him as shake his hand. But fate has other plans for Earth and Wander as the alien menace returns in force, making the first meeting seem more like a skirmish than a battle. Wander is quickly forced into action as one of the only humans with experience fighting aliens and he is quickly put in charge of another suicide mission, this time against odds so overwhelming as to make even the thinking of a plan seem ridiculous. (see review)

Baen

Dead on My Feet (The Halflife Chronicles) by Wm. Mark Simmons (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $7.99) - Book Description: A year ago, Chris Csejthe (pronounced "Say-thee") was completely human-then a blood transfusion with the Lord of the Undead changed everything. Now he is a hunted man, sought by human and vampire alike for the secrets he knows and the powers that his mutated blood may bestow. So far he's dodged undead assassins, werewolves, a 6,000-year-old Egyptian necromancer, and Vlad Dracula himself. But now he's really got problems. The dead are turning up on his doorstep after dark to ask for justice and the police want to know where all those corpses are coming from. Undead terrorists are testing a doomsday virus on his new hometown and he's caught in the crossfire between a white supremacist militia and the resurrected Civil War dead. His werewolf lover, jealous of his dead wife's ghost, has left him. And the centuries-old and still very beautiful (and very deadly) Countess Bathory is determined to have his uniquely transformed blood for her own dark purposes. Now, more than ever, life sucks!

Masks of the Outcasts by Andre Norton (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $24.00) - Book Description: The planet Korwar was a glittering jewel of a world, inhabited by the galaxy's wealthiest, visited by the upper classes of other worlds in search of diversion. The jewel had a flaw: the Dipple, its name coming from a contraction of "displaced person," where the misfits, the hopeless, the penniless eke out a wretched existence on the dole. Two young men hoped to escape from the Dipple: Troy Horan was deported from his own planet after it lost an interstellar war. When he had a chance to work in an unusual pet shop, offering exotic creatures from other worlds to the wealthy, he though his luck had changed. But the owner was playing a dangerous game of intrigue, and when he was murdered Troy barely escaped with his own life. Aided only by telepathic animals from old Terra who had befriended him, he had no choice but to hide in ruins left behind by the now-vanished original inhabitants of Korwar; ruins which explorers had entered without returning. . . . Nik Kolherne had a face so cruelly scared and disfigured that he wore a mask to cover it. When he was recruited with a promise of being given a new face, a face which would make a young heir think he was someone else, he was uneasy, but accepted the offer. Then he found out that he was party to a kidnapping for more sinister purposes than he had been told, and he was the only hope of the young heir's survival-if the two of them could survive on a planet veiled in eternal night, swarming with dangerous predators. . . .

Publisher's Note: Masks of the Outcasts has previously appeared separately as Catseye and Night of Masks. This is the first combined publication of the complete book.

Old Soldiers by David Weber (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $26.00) - Keith Laumer created the Bolos and the series and David Weber has taken over the tasks of putting out new tales about the self aware treaded behemoths. This book is about Lazarus and Maneka, the sole surviving human and Bolo of the Dinochrome Brigade's 39th Battalion. The tank is being paired up with a new operator and is being shipped as support as part of a new, secret colony. Unfortunately, the colony ships have been discovered and are being followed by a Melconian armada. Through a suicidal effort, all of the Melconian ships are destroyed but one and that ship begins to track the surviving human colony ships right to planetfall. The humans hope to establish a colony unknown to the Melconians because the Melconians are winning the war and are forecast to destroy humans totally. For their part, the Melconians have utilized all of their resources following the colony ships and have dedicated themselves to destroying this before it can even get a foothold. The only thing standing between the humans and the Melconians are Maneka and her bolo Lazarus. (see review)

Retief's Peace by William H. Keith Jr. (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $25.00) - The good news is that Retief, the diplomatic savior and nightmare of the CDT (that's Corps Diplomatique Terrestrienne) is back, reconjured by author William Keith. Created by Keith Laumer, Retief is the light side of Laumer's Mil-fic, the darker, or at least deeper side being represented by the stories of cybernetic tanks known as Bolos. Though (Keith) Laumer is gone, that story line has seen several credible extensions by (William) Keith, and now he turns his hand towards the lighter side; a comedy of manners about a secret agent type who rashly violates the rules of diplomacy by finding peaceful solutions to difficult problems in intergalactic relations. The bad news is that either Retief hasn't learned any new tricks during his absence, Keith is laying on the grongleberry a bit thick. Oh well, as the Holy Mystic Fortune Cookies say, "You can't make omelets without grobbling a chutwinkle." (see review)

Ring of Fire (Assiti Shards (Paperback)) by Eric Flint (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $7.99) - Book Description: The battle between democracy and tyranny is joined, and the American Revolution has begun over a century ahead of schedule. A cosmic accident has shifted a modern West Virginia town back through time and space to land it and its twentieth century technology in Germany in the middle of the Thirty Years War. History must take a new course as American freedom and democracy battle against the squabbling despots of seventeenth-century Europe. Continuing the story begun in the hit novels 1632 and 1633, the New York Times best-selling creator of Honor Harrington, David Weber, the best-selling fantasy star Mercedes Lackey, best-selling SF and fantasy author Jane Lindskold, space adventure author K. D. Wentworth, Dave Freer, co-author of the hit novels Rats, Bats & Vats and Pyramid Scheme (both Baen), and Eric Flint himself combine their considerable talents in a shared-universe volume that will be a "must-have" for every reader of 1632 and 1633.

The Shadow of Saganami (The Saganami Island) by David Weber (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $7.99) - Book Description: The Star Kingdom has a new generation of officers! And this elite group hand-picked and trained by Honor Harrington herself is going to be needed immediately, as their first assignment turns out to be more dangerous than anyone expected. What was supposed to be a quiet outpost, far from the blazing conflict between the Star Kingdom of Manticore and the People's Republic of Haven has actually been targeted by an unholy alliance between the slaveholders of Manpower, the rival star kingdoms of Mesa and Monica, and the bureaucrats of the Solarian League. The alliance stands to benefit if the Havenites defeat Manticore, and are preparing for a surprise attack from the rear to divide Manticore's forces, which are already strained nearly to their limits. With their captain, the young Manticoran officers will risk their careers, if not their lives, on an unauthorized mission to expose and counter the threat to their Star Kingdom. Follow their journey as they show what they're made of. New York Times best-selling author David Weber begins a new series that will be a must-buy for the hundreds of thousands of Honor Harrington fans.

The Time of Troubles II by Harry Turtledove (Baen 06 September, 2005 / $26.00) - Book Description: Abrivard, marshal of Makuran, has been given an impossible task by his King: destroy the mighty Empire of Videssos. Even as he pondered how to obey, Videssos's legions are on the march, attacking Makuran first. Abrivard finds himself fighting a defensive war, putting his great battle skills to the task of driving the invaders from his home, the land of the Thousand Cities. But even as he struck back at the invader, he realized that force of arms alone would not carry the day, for Videssos's powerful sorcerers were the stuff of legend, and a strong sword are could not stand against a potent battle spell which could strike the mightiest warrior dead from miles away . . .

Bantam

The Smoke Thief by Shana Abe (Bantam 27 September, 2005 / $15.00) - Book Description: For centuries they've lived in secret among northern England's green and misted hills. Creatures of extraordinary beauty, power, and sensuality, they possess the ability to shape-shift from human to dragon and back again. Now their secret-and their survival-is threatened by a temptation that will break every boundary....

Dubbed the Smoke Thief, a daring jewel thief is confounding the London police. His wealthy victims claim the master burglar can walk through walls and vanish into thin air. But Christoff, the charismatic Marquess of Langford, knows the truth: the thief is no ordinary human but a "runner" who's fled Darkfrith without permission. As Alpha leader of the dra´kon, it's Kit's duty to capture the fugitive before the secrets of the tribe are revealed to mortals. But not even Kit suspects that the Smoke Thief could be a woman.

Clarissa Rue Hawthorne knew her dangerous exploits would attract the attention of the dra´kon. But she didn't expect Christoff himself to come to London, dangling the tribe's most valuable jewel-the Langford Diamond-as bait. For as long as she could remember, Rue had lived the life of a halfling-half dra´kon, half mortal-and an outcast in both worlds. She'd always loved the handsome and willful Kit from the only place it was safe: from afar. But now she was no longer the shy, timid girl she'd once been. She was the first woman capable of making the Turn in four generations. So why did she still feel the same dizzying sense of vulnerability whenever he was near?

From the moment he saw her, Kit knew that the alluring and powerful beauty was every bit his Alpha equal and destined to be his bride. And by the harsh laws of the dra´kon, Rue knew that she was the property of the marquess. But they will risk banishment and worse for a chance at something greater. For now Rue is his prisoner, the diamond has disappeared, and she's made the kind of dangerous proposition a man like Kit cannot resist....In this bewitching novel, Shana Abé transports us into a world of exhilarating romance and magic.

Benbella Books

Farscape Forever! : Sex, Drugs and Killer Muppets (Smart Pop series) by Glenn Yeffeth (Benbella Books 28 September, 2005 / $17.95) - Book Description: Science fiction and fantasy authors analyze every aspect of the innovative, action-packed, and always surprising science fiction television series Farscape in this innovative and irreverent essay collection. Contributors include Martha Wells on characters Crichton and D'Argo's buddy relationship, P. N. Elrod on the villains she loves to hate, and Justina Robson on sex, pleasure, and feminism. Topics range from a look at how Moya was designed and an examination of vulgarity and bodily functions to a tourist's budget guide to the Farscape universe and an expert's advice to the peacekeepers who, despite their viciousness, never quite seem to pull it off. Fun, accessible, entertaining, and insightful, these musings will appeal to every admirer of this intriguing television series.

Into the Dark Lands : First Book of the Sundered by Michelle Sagara West (Benbella Books 28 September, 2005 / $14.95) - Book Description: A gifted healer and fierce warrior, Erin has been a Servant of the Bright Heart her entire life, fighting for millennia against the enemies of her people, the Servants of the Dark Heart. After she has a life-altering vision that reveals that the end of the world is quickly approaching, Erin is chosen to be the champion of Light--and the enemy of Darkness. Embarking on a difficult journey into the stronghold of the Dark Heart, Erin discovers that no magical sword can save her, and hers is no simple quest. An epic battle begins here, with her personal struggle upon which the fate of a world rests.

The Science in Science Fiction : 83 SF Predictions that Became Scientific Reality by Robert Bly (Benbella Books 01 September, 2005 / $24.00) - Robert Bly's The Science in Science Fiction is an interesting overview of science fiction predictions and current science fact and extrapolation. Such a book cannot cover any one issue fully but with 83 topics covering Alternate Energy, Androids, Big Brother, Black Holes, Cloning, Computers, Immortality, Entropy, Flying Cars, Jet Packs, Plague, Rocket Ships, Television to name a few there is bound to be something of interest for everyone. (see review)

Wonder's Child : My Life in Science Fiction by Jack Williamson (Benbella Books 28 September, 2005 / $14.95) - Book Description: Telling much more than the story of a single man's life and work, this autobiography is an amazing look at the entire 20th century from the eyes of one of the greatest voices in science fiction. This story of a man plagued with a perpetual sense of wonder at the world around him begins with Williamson's youth and his family's struggle to survive on farms in the arid southwestern United States. Early attempts at education, the publication of his first story, his service in the Pacific during World War II, and his eventual success in the genre of science fiction are all detailed to tell the life of this Hugo Award-winning author.

DAW

Magic Tails by Martin H. Greenberg (DAW 06 September, 2005 / $7.50) - Book Description: Fourteen original tales from fantastic authors that perfectly blend cats and fantasy in popular fables with a magically feline twist. From a cat genie who has a problem fulfilling human wishes, to the quest which only Sleeping Beauty's cat can complete, to a feline desperately seeking to best the devil, these fables are sure to please lovers of cats and fantasy.

Del Rey

Straken (High Druid of Shannara, Book 3) by Terry Brooks (Del Rey 06 September, 2005 / $26.95) - Grianne Ohmsford lies weak and helpless in a dungeon cell in the demon infested world of the Forbidding. Her nephew, Pen Ohmsford, on whom her rescue depends, now has the darkwand he needs to free her. Shadea a'Ru, who sent Grianne into the Forbidding, set Druids to find Pen and destroy him before he can bring her home to the Four Lands. (see review)

The Unseen Queen (Star Wars: Dark Nest, Book 2) by Troy Denning (Del Rey 27 September, 2005 / $6.99) - From back of book: Despite being given new worlds to populate, the insectoid Killiks have not found peace. An unknown enemy has been attacking the new nests--and the Killiks hold the Jedi responsible. Traveling back to the Unknown Regions to unravel the mystery, the Skywalkers and Solos discover an evil far more familiar than they ever expected...and even more terrifying. Why does the Dark Nest want to kill Mara? Will Jacen's apocalyptic vision trigger another galactic war or prevent one? And perhaps most ominous of all, what deadly secret are the Killiks hiding?

To find out, Luke, Mara, Han, and Leia must embark on a perilous journey into the uncharted void between right and wrong. The ferocious Unknown Terrors are only the beginning of the awesome challenges that lie ahead in their quest to fathom the unfathomable. For an obscure dispute is about to explode into chaos, pitting Jedi against Jedi--and threatening the very galaxy itself.

Troy: Lord of the Silver Bow (Troy) by David Gemmell (Del Rey 27 September, 2005 / $24.95) - Check out Steve Saville's exclusive interview with the author and the UK Review of the book.

"O lord of the silver bow, if you would give like honour to Hector and to Achilles..." excerpt from the Illiad book 24.

Apollo is most famous for being the lord of the silver bow. But a different hero of ancient Greece is the focus of this opening chapter in the start of a new series by David Gemmell. In Lord of the Silver Bow, Aeneas (known here as Helikaon) is followed as he travels around the shores of the Aegean Sea. The bane of Agamemnon, we also learn of his troubled youth and the his father harshness. It's a new take on an old story, and it asks us to consider that there may be as many points of view as there are viewers.

(see review)

Eos

Shaman's Crossing: Book One of The Soldier Son Trilogy by Robin Hobb (Eos 01 September, 2005 / $25.95) - Book Description: Nevare Burvelle is the second son of a second son, destined from birth to carry a sword. The wealthy young noble will follow his father - newly made a lord by the King of Gernia - into the cavalry, training in the military arts at the elite King's Cavella Academy in the capital city of Old Thares. Bright and well-educated, an excellent horseman with an advantageous engagement, Nevare's future appears golden.

But as his Academy instruction progresses, Nevare begins to realize that the road before him is far from straight. The old aristocracy looks down on him as the son of a "new noble" and, unprepared for the political and social maneuvering of the deeply competitive school and city, the young man finds himself entangled in a web of injustice, discrimination, and foul play. In addition, he is disquieted by his unconventional girl-cousin Epiny - who challenges his heretofore unwavering world view - and by the bizarre dreams that haunt his nights.

For twenty years the King's cavalry has pushed across the grasslands, subduing and settling its nomads and claiming the territory in Gernia's name. Now they have driven as far as the Barrier Mountains, home to the Speck people, a quiet, forest-dwelling folk who retain the last vestiges of magic in a world that is rapidly becoming modernized. From childhood Nevare has been taught that the Specks are a primitive people to be pitied for their backward ways - and feared for their indigenous diseases, including the deadly Speck plague, which has ravaged the frontier towns and military outposts.

The Dark Evening brings the carnival to Old Thares, and with it an unknown magic, and the first Specks Nevare has ever seen . . .

Golden Gryphon Press

From the Files of the Time Rangers by Richard Bowes (Golden Gryphon Press 01 September, 2005 / $24.95) - A title like From the Files of the Time Rangers makes me think of great pulp classics, full of mind-controlling villains and heroes with insignia and needle guns. But Richard Bowes' creation is a much more complex work than that: a Mosaic Novel created from short stories that appeared in SCIFICTION and The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction which have been reworked to a continuous flow. As the author so concisely puts it, this is a book with "chunks of fantasy and pieces of science fiction, myth and politics, ancient gods and cable TV embedded side by side". All these elements blend into one fantastic piece, one where humans are not totally pawns and gods are not totally powerful. (see review)

Gotham

The Physics of Superheroes by James Kakalios (Gotham 29 September 2005 / $26.00) - Book Description: If superheroes stepped off the comic book page or silver screen and into reality, could they actually work their wonders in a world constrained by the laws of physics? How strong would Superman have to be to "leap tall buildings in a single bound"? Could Storm of the X-Men possibly control the weather? And how many cheeseburgers would the Flash need to eat to be able to run at supersonic speeds?

Face front, True Believer, and wonder no more! Because in The Physics of Superheroes acclaimed university professor James Kakalios shows that comic book heroes and villains get their physics right more often than you think.

In this scintillating scientific survey of super powers you'll learn what the physics of forces and motion can reveal about Superman's strength and the true cause of the destruction of his home planet Krypton, what villains Magneto and Electro can teach us about the nature of electricity—and finally get the definitive answer about whether it was the Green Goblin or Spider-Man's webbing that killed the Wall Crawler's girlfriend Gwen Stacy in that fateful plunge from the George Washington Bridge!

Along the way, The Physics of Superheroes explores everything from energy, to thermodynamics, to quantum mechanics, to solid state physics, and Kakalios relates the physics in comic books to such real-world applications as automobile airbags, microwave ovens, and transistors. You'll also see how comic books have often been ahead of science in explaining recent topics in quantum mechanics (with Kitty Pryde of the X-Men) and string theory (with the Crisis on Infinite Earths).

This is the book you need to read if you ever wondered how the Invisible Woman of the Fantastic Four can see when she turns transparent, if the Atom could travel on an electron through a phone line, or if electromagnetic theory can explain how Professor X reads minds. Fun, provocative, and packed with more superheroes and superpowers than an Avengers-Justice League crossover, The Physics of Superheroes will make both comic-book fans and physicists exclaim, "Excelsior!" (Source: Gotham)

Green Grass Press

Mayan Mars by Marc André Meyers (Green Grass Press 30 September, 2005 / $14.95) - Mayan Mars takes the reader from the Yucatan rainforest and Mayan culture and religious belief/politics to the modern day cutthroat political and financial wrangling of academia. NASA is launching a Mars Return mission and the collection capsules are to be sealed via explosive welding. Scientist Gustavo Chen believes that bacteria could be trapped in the wavy seal formed by the explosion and suggests new material for the capsule. He's cut off from the project and yet continues to try to get someone to listen to him. He gets a grant to do research in Japan and learns that not only can bacteria be trapped but that the explosion can cause mutation of the bacteria. He's ignored until the mission returns spreading an Ebola-like epidemic starting in the Yucatan and rapidly moving worldwide. A Mayan priest predicted this catastrophe years ago and a modern day Mayan priest holds the secret to immunity and survival. Chen must come to terms with his heritage and beliefs, and move to save what he can. (see review)

Jove

Follow by A.J. Matthews (Jove 27 September, 2005 / $7.99) - Pamela Gardner had a car accident as she sped away from her home to escape a mad man who wanted to kill her. On the road she lost control of the car in the sleet and ice trying to stay ahead of the car following her. After the accident things just didn't seem the same anymore. (see review)

McFarland & Company

Empire Triumphant: Race, Religion And Rebellion in the Star Wars Films by Kevin J., Jr. Wetmore (McFarland & Company 27 September, 2005 / $32.00) - Book Description: George Lucas's first Star Wars trilogy shows the influences of its era; Cold War tension is evident in its theme of rebellion against totalitarianism. Recent entries in the Star Wars saga--The Phantom Menace (1999) and Attack of the Clones (2002)--are much more concerned with evil corporations, terrorists, and the corruption of the political process. Each film is influenced by the times in which it was released, but also by cultural subtexts and by other films that had direct and indirect effects on Lucas as writer, producer, and director.

This work focuses on all six Star Wars films. The first topic of this multifaceted examination is how the films use the language of colonialism ("The" Rebellion, "The" Empire) to emphasize the idea of imperialism. Next the author looks at how Asian influences--including religious undertones from Taoism and Buddhism and the works of Kurosawa and other Asian filmmakers--provide a subtext for much of the action. Next the discussion turns to the representation of people of color in the Star Wars universe, and how other ethnicities are represented overall, particularly through the literalization of the word "aliens." These topics of discussion provide for penetrating conclusions about Lucas's films and how they represent race, religion, and rebellion.

Phobos Impact

Dragon America : Book One: Revolution by Mike Resnick (Phobos Impact 25 September, 2005 / $13.95) - Dragon America, the new alternate history from Mike Resnick, is set in the American colonies during the Revolutionary War. However, instead of addressing a mundane question such as "what would have happened if the British won?" Resnick instead addresses the more interesting question of "what if George Washington had attacked Cornwallis with dragons?" (see review)

Pocket

Heretic : The Templar Chronicles by Joseph Nassise (Pocket 27 September, 2005 / $6.99) - Former Special Operations and Tactics officer Cade Williams, a member of the resurrected Knights Templar, is called in to investigate a mystifying crime wave--the desecration of Templar cemeteries--with no apparent connection among the bodies stolen. A man with extraordinary abilities and a painful past, Cade will have to face his personal demons as he searches for the monsters who threaten to destroy what he has sworn to protect. (see review)

Ricochet Press

Golem by Greg Vilk (Ricochet Press September, 2005 / $13.95) - From back of book: During a polar night, a U.S. Rangers commando unit is sent to capture a remote Nazi base. Upon arrival, the Rangers discover that the German crew has been massacred and that the lone, fear-stricken survivor hallucinates about ghosts in the snow. The Rangers soon find out that they're not alone in the base and that they're confronted with a faceless, deadly entity which can breathe life into non-living matter.

Roc

Lost on the Darkside: : Voices From The Edge of Horror (Darkside #4) (Darkside) by John Pelan (Roc 06 September, 2005 / $7.99) - Book Description: This fourth collection in the acclaimed series features 15 original horror stories by David Silva, Michael Reaves, Ramsey Campbell, Jessica Amanda Salmonson, John Pelan, Joseph Ezzo, Mark Samuels, David Wilson, Michael Laimo, Tony Richards, Joe Nassise, Paul Melniczek, Maria Alexander, Gerard Houarner, and Jeffrey Thomas.

Roc Hardcover

The Protector's War by S. M. Stirling (Roc Hardcover 06 September, 2005 / $24.95) - The Protector's War is the second book in the post holocaust series which started with Dies The Fire. A traditional post holocaust novel is set after a nuclear war, and has the characters using brains and ingenuity and history to survive and rebuild civilization. A true classic of that type is Alas Babylon, other versions such as Day of the Triffids used other methods of destroying society. S.M Stirling destroys human society by removing all power sources: electricity, internal combustion engines and explosive chemical reactions. The planes fall out of the sky, the cars, trucks and trains stop in their tracks; radio, television and telephones cease functioning and the guns stop firing. (see review)

Roc Trade

Blue Moon Rising by Simon R. Green (Roc Trade 06 September, 2005 / $15.00) - Book Description: Rupert didn't especially want to be a prince. And he certainly never asked to be the second son of a royal line that really didn't need a spare. So he was sent out to slay a dragon and prove himself-a quest straight out of legend. But he also discovered the kinds of things legends tend to leave out, as well as the usual demons, goblins, the dreaded Night Witch-and even worse terrors hidden in the shadows of Darkwood. Rupert did find a fiery dragon-and a beautiful princess to rescue. But the dragon turned out to be a better friend than anyone back at the castle, and with the evil of Darkwood spreading, Rupert was going to need all the friends he could get.

Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

Rumors of War and Infernal Machines : Technomilitary Agenda-setting in American and English Speculative Fiction by Charles E. Gannon (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc. September, 2005 / $22.95) - Book Description: What role, if any, does narrative imagination play in the anticipation and actualization of America's political future? Rumors of War and Infernal Machines explores how narrative speculations on emergent or imaginary military technologies may exert profound influence upon the political agendas and actions of modern superpower states. This phenomenon is analyzed primarily within the domain of post-World War II American speculative fiction (e.g. science fiction, technothrillers, apocalypse narratives) and policy however, to show that this particular to one nation and one epoch, the book also conducts a detailed assessment of comparable Victorian and Edwardian British literature. Ultimately, these two investigatory thrusts reveal profound cultural similarities and a marked transatlantic continuum close analysis of primary texts and supporting historical documents indicates that, along with global dominance, a discursive preoccupation with military innovation was transferred from Britain to the US in the decades following World War I. Rumors of War and Infernal Machines reveals a similar historical relationship between the increasing political influence of speculative military fiction and the parallel rise of superpower states and their technophilic ideologies. Throughout, new research and analyses are presented without recourse to jargon, inviting readers of varying backgrounds and interests to explore the intersections of future-looking fiction and contemporary political power.

Spectra

Chasing Fire by Michelle M. Welch (Spectra 27 September, 2005 / $6.50) - Book Description: Returning to the land of Confidence Game and The Bright and the Dark, Michelle M. Welch revisits the Five Countries, where magic is suspect, loyalty drives a hard bargain, and war is just a misstep away. Now, as a devastating plague takes its deadly course, a quest as fragile as a dream begins.... Rindell Jorren, the twenty-year-old son of a governor of Dabion, is unsuited to follow in his powerful father's footsteps. Aimless and timid, Rindell wants only to delve into the poetry and song of the romantic cavaliers of yesteryear. But his father has other plans. To shore up his alliances, he has arranged a marriage for Rindell to a heathen Azassian. Unknown to Rindell, his future bride, Adina, is mad. Descended from the Azassian warrior who ripped the country apart centuries before, she is racked by nightmares, bound to the past-and sought by wanderers on the fringe of reality. But while Adina is blurred by insanity, Elzith the Sage sees clearly: a city burning, a search for faith, and a way to finally free humanity from its greatest scourge....

Children of the Serpent Gate : Book 3 of The Tears of Artamon by Sarah Ash (Spectra 27 September, 2005 / $23.00) - Book Description: In this third novel in her acclaimed Tears of Artamon saga, Sarah Ash once again transports readers to a realm where sorcery collides with political intrigue...and where one man haunted by a dark legacy is locked in a fierce struggle between the forces of good and evil battling for supremacy within him....

Gavril Nagarian is believed dead-perished in the heat of battle. But the Lord Drakhaon of Azhkendir lives on. Now he is entrusted with a sacred mission: to rescue the aged Magus, who has been kidnapped and in whose possession are the five priceless rubies that compose the fabled Tears of Artamon. Ancient law decrees that whoever possesses the coveted stones has the power to impose his rule over the five princedoms in the Empire of New Rossiya.

But the task exacts a cost. The Drakhaoul that destroyed his forebears has penetrated Gavril's psyche and is gaining power over his soul. With the dark forces inside him seeking immortality, Gavril must feed on the blood of innocents-or die. Toppled by the loss of the Tears of Artamon, Emperor Eugene of Tielen is tormented by his own daemon. Now he must defend his lands against King Enguerrand of Francia, who claims ownership of the Tears. But both men share a common goal: to destroy Gavril Nagarian and the Drakhaoul that lives within him once and for all. Ingenious and unforgettable, Children of the Serpent Gate delivers a thrilling conclusion to the epic trials of a man of honor in a world run amok-a calamity that can be laid to rest only by an Emperor's Tears.

Veniss Underground by Jeff Vandermeer (Spectra 27 September, 2005 / $14.00) - Book Description: In his debut novel, literary alchemist Jeff VanderMeer takes us on an unforgettable journey, a triumph of the imagination that reveals the magical and mysterious city of Veniss through three intertwined voices. First, Nicholas, a would-be Living Artist, seeks to escape his demons in the shadowy underground-but in doing so makes a deal with the devil himself. In her fevered search for him, his twin sister, Nicola, spins her own unusual and hypnotic tale as she discovers the hidden secrets of the city. And finally, haunted by Nicola's sudden, mysterious disappearance and gripped by despair, Shadrach, Nicola's lover, embarks on a mythic journey to the nightmarish levels deep beneath the surface of the city to bring his love back to light. There he will find wonders beyond imagining...and horrors greater than the heart can bear.

By turns beautiful, horrifying, delicate, and powerful, Veniss Underground explores the limits of love, memory, and obsession in a landscape that defies the boundaries of the imagination. This special edition includes the short stories "The Sea, Mendeho, and Moonlight"; "Detectives and Cadavers"; and "A Heart for Lucretia" and the novella Balzac's War, offering a complete tour of the fantastic world of Veniss.

Star Trek

Star Trek Titan: The Red King by Michael A. Martin (Star Trek September, 2005 / $7.99) - Book Description: Investigating the disappearance of a secret Romulan fleet, the U.S.S. Titan, commanded by Captain William Riker, is unexpectedly propelled more than 200,000 light-years into the Small Magellanic Cloud. One of the Milky Way's satellite galaxies, the Cloud is also home to the Neyel, the long-sundered offshoots of Terran humanity, with whom the Federation has had no contact in over eighty years. Nearby, Riker's uncertain ally, Commander Donatra of the Romulan Warbird Valdore, rescues a young Neyel, the survivor of a mysterious cosmic upheaval that seems at times to be both unraveling and reweaving the very fabric of space...the fulfillment of an apocalyptic vision that has already claimed millions of lives. Titan's science team soon finds evidence that the ravaging of Neyel space is the work of a vast and powerful intelligence: the stirrings of a dormant consciousness that is maintaining the existence of the Small Magellanic Cloud -- and all life within it -- from one moment to the next. And if it should awaken, the consequences are unimaginable. As Riker considers his options, his new crew struggles with the scientific and philosophical implications of what they've discovered...while the young Neyel in their midst forges a bond with the captain, conjuring old ghosts Riker has yet to lay to rest.

Tachyon Publications

Numbers Don't Lie by Terry Bisson (Tachyon Publications 28 September, 2005 / $14.95) - In this slim novel Terry Bisson brings together three shorter works originally published in Asimov's in 1994, 1996, and 1998. A reprint of an electronic version of all three under one virtual cover, Numbers Don't Lie tells the over-arching tale of Wilson Wu and his Watson-like friend Irving. Irving's story is one of losing and then gaining a spouse; Wu's tale involves the moon and a few pages of formulae that Rudy Rucker checked for accuracy and elegance, finding "one is more important than the other." (see review)

Thunder's Mouth Press

Eternity and Other Stories by Lucius Shepard (Thunder's Mouth Press 09 September, 2005 / $14.95) - Book Description: Here are seven stories from a master of the art. Viktor Chemayev is the Philip Marlowe of Russian detectives, a sad-eyed, heavy drinking romantic who refuses to stay beat. In the title novella of this extraordinary collection, he goes head-to-head with an Irish assassin in the depths of a Moscow nightclub in an attempt to win back his true love, who has been sold to the Beelzebub-like king of the Moscow underworld... Lucius Shepard is known for his dark, unpredictable vision, and in this assemblage of some of his best writing he takes us from Moscow to Africa; from the mountains of Iraq, where Specialist Charlie N. Wilson encounters a very different sort of enemy, to Central America, where a bloody-handed colonel meets his doom via lizards. In these seven tales Shepard's imagination spans the globe and, like an American Gabriel Garcia Marquez, refuses to be restricted by mere reality.

Tor Books

Alone with the Horrors : The Great Short Fiction of Ramsey Campbell 1961-1991 by Ramsey Campbell (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $15.95) - Book Description: Ramsey Campbell is perhaps the world's most honored author of horror fiction. He has won four World Fantasy Awards, ten British Fantasy Awards, three Bram Stoker Awards, and the Horror Writers' Association's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Three decades into his career, Campbell paused to review his body of short fiction and selected the stories that were, to his mind, the very best of his works. Alone With the Horrors collects nearly forty tales from the first thirty years of Campbell's writing, including several award-winners.

Campbell crowns the book with a length preface-revised for this edition-which traces his early publication history, discusses his youthful correspondence with August Derleth, and illuminates the influence of H.P. Lovecraft on his work. Alone With the Horrors provides readers with a close look at a powerful writer's development of his craft.

Dark of the Sun by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $15.95) - Book Description: It is the 6th century of the common era. The vampire Saint-Germain, known in this time as Zangi-Ragozh, is peacefully doing business in Asia when the island of Krakatoa explodes in a massive volcanic eruption. Tidal waves swamp harbors hundreds of miles away, destroying trade ships and their cargoes; tons of ash and dirt are flung into the air.

In the months to come, the world grows colder and darker as the massive volcanic cloud spreads across the globe, blocking sunlight. Sea trade is ravaged. Crops fail. Livestock, and then people, begin to starve. Disease spreads. Panic rises. As always in times of trouble, foreigners-and the vampire is always a foreigner becomes a targets. Fleeing toward the West, where he hopes to find safety and sanity, the vampire travels with a nomadic tribe led by Dukkai, a female shaman who soon becomes Zangi-Ragozh's lover.

But Zangi-Ragozh's problems are far from over. His vampire nature is discovered by an enemy; he begins to starve; he is betrayed by one he cared deeply for; he loses everything, even his last sack of his native soil. With the True Death looming, Zangi-Ragozh tries to reach sanctuary in his ancient homeland. Transylvania.

Dogs of Truth : New and Uncollected Stories by Kit Reed (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $14.95) - Book Description: The Dogs of Truth contains 17 new or previously uncollected short stories. Included are "High Rise High," about a student revolt at the ultimate "secure" high school; "Focus Group," where a star-struck fan dictates the fate of soap opera characters through a biochip implant; "Escape from Shark Island," which looks at an extreme version of today's trendy "family bed;" and "Precautions," where germ-phobia reigns supreme.

The new stories tell of the "Grand Opening" of the world's largest mega-mall, study the relationship of a writer and his muse in "Getting It Back," and, in "The Shop of Little Horrors," take a dark look at the child-free lifestyle.

Midshipwizard Halcyon Blithe by James M. Ward (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $24.95) - Book Description: Halcyon Blithe, being a young man of good breeding and lineage as well as endowed with those qualities and abilities of a sorcerous nature and wishing to fulfill his full potential, is ready to assume his proper place in the world. He aims to seek his fortune among those who tend and sail the awesome nautical juggernauts-the dragonships. With this is mind, Blithe gladly accepts his rank as Midshipwizard and becomes a member of the crew who man the dragonships-vessels which harness the bodies and strength of living dragons with seafaring technology.

Combining elements of Hornblower with Harry Potter, and Robert Louis Stevenson with Robin Hobb, Midshipwizard Halcyon Blithe is a nautical tale rich in magic and intrigue. A tale set against a panorama of fantastic naval battle as we follow the career of a young midshipwizard as he moves up through the ranks of His Majesty's Navy.

Night Train to Rigel by Timothy Zahn (Tor Books 15 September, 2005 / $24.95) - This book is labeled as a science fiction thriller and it certainly has more than enough of both elements to satisfy the needs of readers looking for either. The book is also somewhat of a throwback to the science fiction of the fifties and sixties with a focus on how technology allows travel and alien interaction without spending a lot of time on the technology itself or the methods. Thus, we have the train system that gets you from planetary system to planetary system. Of course it's not a real train but if it functions like one, has cars like one, conductors like one and rolls into and out of stations then it's close enough to a train for arguments sake. (see review)

Nobody True by James Herbert (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $25.95) - Book description: James True was not there when he died. He'd returned from one of those out-of-body experiences, the kind where you feel your spirit has left your body, but it isn't really a dream, to find he's been murdered, mutilated. The killer left nothing for him to go back to. But who was it? The serial killer terrorizing the city? Or maybe someone closer? But he had no enemies . . . at least none that he knew of. Now to discover the truth he's forced to face the fright of having to visit this serial killer, and the horror is followed by even greater horror when he discovers his own loved ones are now the killer's targets. Without a body True has no substance, no real power . . . No one can see him, no one can hear him, no one, except his very killer, knows his spirit still exists. . . . So how can he stop him?

States of Grace (St. Germain) by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $25.95) - Book Description: It is the time of the Reformation. Henry VIII's England moves toward schism; Luther's precepts spread through Europe even as the Inquisition strives to wipe out any hint of heresy. Franzicco Ragoczy di Santo-Germano-the vampire Saint-Germain-is a successful merchant based in Venice. His lavish lifestyle and rumored cache of magnificent jewels have attracted the wrong sort of attention, and without Santo-Germano's noble-and papal-connections, he might be imprisoned, his property confiscated. Also under surveillance is his mistress, the lovely and talented musician Pier-Ariana Salier. In the Spanish Netherlands, Ragoczy's publishing business is being investigated by the Inquisition. Coming to the aid of his employees, Ragoczy becomes tarred with the brush of heresy, as does Erneste van Amsteljaxter, a writer whose intelligence Ragoczy finds attractive. Ragoczy does what he can to help her, but must return to Venice when he learns that his fortune there has been embezzled away and that Pier-Ariana has disappeared. In Venice, things are worse than Santo-Germano expected. Not only has his money disappeared, so has a young man who had been spying on the vampire and his mistress. Santo-Germano is accused of kidnapping and perhaps murder. Another spy has discovered Santo-Germano's true nature and intends to kill him before he can feast on all of Venice!

The Eternity Artifact by L. E. Modesitt Jr. (Tor Books 29 September, 2005 / $25.95) - Book Description: 5,000 years in the future, humankind has spread across thousands of worlds, and more than a dozen different governments exist in an uneasy truce. But human beings have found no signs of other life anywhere approaching human intelligence. This changes when scientists discover a sunless planet they name Danann, travelling the void just beyond the edge of the Galaxy at such a high speed that it cannot be natural. Its continents and oceans have been sculpted and shaped, with but a single megaplex upon it--close to perfectly preserved--with tens of thousands of near-identical metallic-silver-blue towers set along curved canals. Yet Danann has been abandoned for so long that even the atmosphere has frozen solid. Within a few years Danann will approach an area of singularities that will make exploration and investigation impossible. Orbital shuttle pilot Jiendra Chang, artist Chendor Barna, and history professor Liam Fitzhugh are recruited by the Comity government and its Deep Space Service, along with scores of other experts as part of an unprecedented and unique expedition to unravel Danann's secrets. And there are forces that will stop at nothing to prevent them, even if it means interstellar war.

The Road to Dune by Brian Herbert (Tor Books 01 September, 2005 / $25.95) - Book Description: Including never-before-published chapters from Dune and Dune Messiah, original stories, and a new short novel by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson. Frank Herbert's Dune is widely known as the science fiction equivalent of The Lord of the Rings, and The Road to Dune is a companion work comparable to The Silmarillion, shedding light on and following the remarkable development of the bestselling science fiction novel of all time. Herein, the world's millions of Dune fans can now read---at long last---the unpublished chapters and scenes from Dune and Dune Messiah. The Road to Dune also includes the original correspondence between Frank Herbert and famed editor John W. Campbell, Jr.; excerpts from Herbert's correspondence during his years-long struggle to get his innovative work published; and the article "They Stopped the Moving Sands," Herbert's original inspiration for Dune.

The Road to Dune features newly discovered papers and manuscripts of Frank Herbert, and also "Spice Planet," an original sixty-thousand-word short novel by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson, based on a detailed outline left by Frank Herbert. The Road to Dune is a treasure trove of essays, articles, and fiction that every reader of Dune will want to add to their shelf.

Tor Teen

Alosha : Alosha Trilogy Book One (Alosha Trilogy) by Christopher Pike (Tor Teen 01 September, 2005 / $6.99) - Book Description: Almost everyone, at some time, dreams of being the hidden king or queen of a far-off land. Almost everyone dreams that someday that secret identity will be revealed, heralding a new life filled with magic and power and love. Teenager Ali Warner has good reason to believe in such a fantasy. While hiking in the woods behind her house, Ali stumbles across a plot by the elementals--mysterious creatures who live in a neighboring dimension--to invade and destroy the Earth. Not only that, she discovers that she has been chosen to stop the attack. Why Ali? It is very possible that she is more than human . . .

Eager to earn her magical abilities and learn her true identity, Ali sets out on a great adventure. The journey will take her far from home and through a series of dangerous tests that require not only courage and strength, but an insight into life itself. Accompanied by a devious leprechaun, a loyal troll, and three close friends, Ali strives to reach the top of a forbidden mountain and lay claim to the Yanti, an ancient talisman of great power that even the elementals cannot control.

Wildside Press

The Sound of Angels by Lisa Silverthorne (Wildside Press 30 September, 2005 / $17.95) - Book description: Somewhere in the twilight between life and death is the blur of wings, the echo of voices. . .the sound of angels. Take a journey through the worlds of Lisa Silverthorne, some ordinary and some otherworldly, some primordial and some ethereal, but all of them exploring the different shades of wonder and magic in the human experience.

William Morrow

Anansi Boys: A Novel by Neil Gaiman (William Morrow 20 September, 2005 / $26.95) - Family is embarrassing. Bad enough when they're ordinary humans, who know what gets under your skin. When they're gods, it's just that much worse.

In Anansi Boys, Neil Gaiman takes a supporting character from his award-winning book American Gods and kills him off on page one. Mr. Nancy's son, Fat Charlie, who ran off to England to escape myriad inventive humiliations heaped on him by his father, comes back to America for the funeral. Fat Charlie has a mundane and perhaps unsatisfying life---an unfulfilling job, a fiancee with a hellish mother, and a fear of social embarrassment caused by his flamboyant father's pranks--but that life is turned upside-down when he finds he has a brother. (see review)

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