the Little Red Reviewer

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well, you’re month doesn’t need to be interrupted, but mine is going to be!

As I always do in mid January, this weekend I’m headed to ConFusion, a science fiction and fantasy convention held in the suburbs just outside Detroit.  If you find yourself over there, head on over to the Sheraton at 8 Mile and I-275 to hang with 900 (or more?) of your closest friends.   If your comment gets stuck in moderation, it’s because wifi will be iffy.

I’ve even got some panels!

Friday: 6pm – Panel on Alternate History

Sunday 10am:  Scifi Fantasy All Stars! Draft a team and beat the existential crisis!

Sunday 11am: How the F*** do I make this?  Answering your cosplay prop questions!

For a few hours on Saturday, I will be walking around the hotel cosplaying a My Little Pony.   Making papercraft ears is fun!

 

Lessons I’ve learned from attending previous conventions:

dress in layers. one panel room will be freezing, the next will be boiling.

haven’t worn high heels in a year? Probably not a good idea to wear them to a convention.

drink as much water as you can. the humidity in convention hotels is approximately minus a million percent.

bring snacks to stash in your hotel room, and to have in your tote bag. snacks are your friend.

People watching is THE BEST.

 

 

It’s time for another Blind Date with a Book give away!  but this time, they are all Vintage science fiction books!

I’ll tell you a little about the book, but not the title or the author, and you get to decide if the book is worth a blind date! Here’s how the give away works:

  •  put in the comments what number book(s) you’re interested in. put #1, #2, etc. You can enter for more than one.
  • if WordPress doesn’t prompt you to enter your e-mail address, please give me some way to get a hold of you, such as twitter, e-mail, facebook, or to use  a contact page on your website
  • Give away ends on Friday Jan 27th, with winners being announced shortly thereafter
  • due to the costs of international shipping, unfortunately this is a US only give away. I love you everyone else, I just can’t afford to mail things to you!

 

Ermagerd I’m such a nerd, I typed up the descriptions on my circa 1940 typewriter.

vintage-bdwab-1

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The first week of Vintage SciFi Month has flown by, and the reviews and photos and instagrams and comments and twitter conversations are flying in!  Here’s an incomplete round up of blog posts, reviews, give aways, read alongs, and other goodies from the first week of Vintage month:

a review of Transfinite – The Essential A.E. Van Vogt  at Tip the Wink

The Tritonian Ring by L. Sprague de Camp review posted at Castalia House

Mervi’s Book Reviews discusses End of Eternity by Isaac Asimov

Join and catch up with the Dorsai! read along at Red Star Reviews

While you’re over at Red Star Reviews, learn how you can win a copy of The Book of Frank Herbert, a fantastic little collection of Herbert short stories

Ian Sales has a really excellent guest post at Science Fiction and other Suspect Ruminations about scifi writers Leslie Perri, Alice Eleanor Jones, and Sonya Dorman.

 

Have I missed you?   Click the “Vintage Science Fiction” tab at the top of the screen and ad your link in the comments!

I’m the opposite of crafty, but I did grow up making paper snowflakes and loops of paper chains. All winter our house was covered in paper snowflakes.   As a kid, we’d cut paper into  a square, fold it diagonal, then fold it diagonal again, then start snipping.  get some cute 4 sided symmetrical snowflakes, and some fugly ones.  but wait, real snowflakes are 6 sided symmetry!!

 

Six sided symmetry didn’t defeat me for the gearflakes I made,  so it’s time to make some 6 sided symmetrical snowflakes.

 

I used silvery wrapping paper cuz it’s shiny.  I traced circles with a little plate, and cut them out.

 

snowflakes-1

Then I made a taco out of the circles, and then folded the tacos into thirds.  fold in half, then fold in thirds, that means now I have 6 wedges.  that’s the end of the math required, I promise.

snowflakes-2

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The best thing about being a book blogger is all the amazing books I get to read! I didn’t read as many books in 2016 as I wanted to, but I sure picked some good ones to read. If I’ve given you good recommendations in the past, but you think you might have missed some, this list is a great reference of stuff I think you might like. If you’re new to my blog and are wondering what kind of books do it for me, this list is a great place to start.

 

In no particular order, here are my favorite books that I reviewed this year:

 

The Narrator by Michael Cisco

Spells of Blood and Kin by Claire Humphrey

Darwin’s Radio by Greg Bear

The Assimilated Cuban’s Guide to Quantum Santeria by Carlos Hernandez

The Flux by Ferrett Steinmetz

Clockwork Phoenix Volume 5 edited by Mike Allen

City of Blades by Robert Jackson Bennett

Way Station by Clifford Simak

 

Vintage SF badge

 

If you could ask your great grandparents what their life was like when they were growing up, you would, right?

If you could go back in time and see what your country and your family were like before social media took over the universe, you’d be interesting in seeing what the world was like, right?

 

This January,  you can.  This January, I invite you to travel through time with me.  Travel into the past,  look into the youthful eyes of your great grandparents. See what came before so we could have what we have now.

Ok, maybe not time travel exactly. . .  but sort of.

 

Everything comes from somewhere. You came from your parents, duh.  But who are the parents of your favorite science fiction books? I’ll tell you:  the parents of your favorite science fiction books are the books that author read to be inspired and to dream.  And those books have parents too.  If you don’t like me using the word “book parents” here, how about “the author’s influences”?  Something they were influenced and inspired by to create something new and modern.

By reading older fiction, you get to see how that fiction progressed to get to where it is today. You get to experience the family tree, as it were, of speculative fiction.

To learn more, click on “Vintage Sci-Fi Not-A-Challenge” tab up top.  This is not a reading challenge. You do not have to do anything.  You can read one book or ten. You can listen to a radio broadcast, you can watch and old movie or old TV shows.  You can post a comment, a few sentences, a full on book review, a video blog post, you can just lurk if you want.  There is one rule:  what you read/listen to/view/ discuss should be older than me.  If it was born before 1979 it’s fair game for Vintage Month.

I’ll be posting again about Vintage Month in December, but in the meantime, help get the word out, because like every party the more the merrier.  I’m taking a break from social media for a little while,  so have fun talking about Vintage Month on twitter by using #VintageSciFi and #VintageSciFiMonth, and following @VintageSciFi_  (don’t forget the Underscore at the end!), which is run by the amazing and enthusiastic Jacob at Red Star Reviews.  If you’re on other social media feel free to chat about it there too.

an you believe 2017 will be the 6th year of Vintage Month???  I can’t!

It’s Red Alert for the Interstellar Patrol.  Are you ready to take a trip back in time?

sfm16_8

Where do “it’s Monday what are you reading?” memes and Scifi Month intersect?  Right here, with this fun little questionnaire!

 

  1. What scifi book(s)  are you reading?
  2. What about this book is most enjoyable?
  3. what Scifi book(s) did you most recently finish reading?
  4. have you ever read anything by these authors before? Would you read more from them?

 

I’ll go first.

the-narrator-cisco

I’m currently reading The Narrator by Michael Cisco.  It’s very atmospheric and poetic, a joy to read.  It feels a little like Sofia Samatar meets Gene Wolfe by way of China Mieville. So yes, enjoying it very much!!  I recently finished Fix by Ferrett Steinmetz and Willful Child by Steven Erickson.   The Steinmetz is the final book in his ‘mancy trilogy, and I will happily read anything this man writes. Fix is more urban fantasy you say? Maybe, but it sure does have science fiction elements to it as well!  Willful Child was fun enough once I got into it, so I might read the sequel.

fix-steinmetz

 

willful-child


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some of the books reviewed here were free ARCs supplied by publishers/authors/other groups. Some of the books here I got from the library. the rest I *gasp!* actually paid for. I'll do my best to let you know what's what.