the Little Red Reviewer

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We survived the move! mostly because the professional movers moved all the heavy stuff.  those poor guys, lugging everything up four flights of stairs.  if professional movers start charging a thousand dollars extra per outdoor flight of stairs, that’s our fault.

the new place is huge, with a nicer view than the old place.  I am not used to having to walk so far to the coffee pot. that could be a problem. ;)  if we ever get the place somewhat unpacked, I’ll post some photos. We were short a bookcase before the move, and our oldest bookcase didn’t survive the move. So there are a ton of book boxes sitting around until the new bookcase we ordered arrives. Maybe we should have ordered 2 bookcases?

status of book reviews and such, because #books:

books i’ve finished and need to, like, review sometime:

2015-04-05 20.33.31The Gabble by Neal Asher – if you like super alien aliens, you’ll like this.   as a collection, it’s got pros and cons, but it serves a good introduction to Asher’s Polity universe and his writing style.

2015-04-05 20.34.31Aurora by Kim Stanley Robinson – this doesn’t come out till July. When am I allowed to start talking about it!?

american craftsmenAmerican Craftsmen by Tom Doyle – I really enjoyed how this started, and Doyle’s written himself the foundations for a series that he could have a lot of fun with. I had some issues with the action scenes, but I’m an action scene snob.

books on the horizon that I’m planning to read next:

superpositionSuperposition by David Walton.  David Brin and Will McIntosh blurbed it. ‘nuf said.

three bodyThree Body Problem by Cixin Liu – Husband is about two thirds of the way through and loves it. also? Hugo ballot.

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We get the keys to the new place on Thursday, the professional movers show up on Friday.  Got just about everything packed up except the kitchen. Today we celebrated finishing packing the books.

That boxes in front? not books. All the other boxes in this photo? books.

That box on the floor in front? not books. All the other boxes in this photo? Books. Twelve boxes of ’em

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It’s not that I’ve been procrastinating writing my review of Neal Asher’s The Gabble (it was hella fun, btw), it’s that I’ve been elsewhere on the web’o’sphere:

I was part of a SFSignal Mind Meld on Remembering Leonard Nimoy and Terry Pratchett. I sent the link to my Dad, he said he liked my response.

I interviewed Tim Lebbon over at SFSignal about his newest apocalyptic novel The Silence

I interviewed A.C. Wise at Apex Magazine about her short story “Silver Buttons All down His Back”

S.C. Flynn interviewed me over at Scy-Fy.

I’ve been packing like a crazy mo-fo. Today I’m tackling the kitchen, the boardgames cabinet, and the entertainment center. or at least hoping to.

Big News! I’m moving in two weeks!

This blog isn’t moving, I am, quite literally, moving. Down the street. We’re swapping our crappy one bedroom apartment for a much larger and much nicer two bedroom that’s in our same apartment complex. So we are packing all our earthly belongings, lugging them down three flights of stairs, putting them in cars and SUVs and vans, driving across a small neighborhood, and then lugging everything up four flights of stairs.

Because we’re crazy.

and then the weekend after our move I’m going to a Convention.

because I’m crazy.

The sixtyfour million dollar question is:

How many boxes of books do you think we’ll have when we’re done packing?

I’m at 11 and counting, and that’s not even all the books that are just in the bedroom.

there’s book news too:

I finished reading Aurora, by Kim Stanley Robinson, but I can’t talk about it until closer to release date. I’m looking forward to reviewing it.
2015-04-05 20.34.31

I read Transmetropolitan, Volume 1, by Warren Ellis. It’s snarky and crass, and the further i got into it, the more I liked it. Review coming soon.

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I’m a few stories into The Gabble, a short story collection from Neal Asher. These stories all take place in and around his Polity universe, which I am only familiar with from having read The Skinner. I love the way Asher does scifi horror and aliens. Not everyone’s cuppa tea no doubt, but I freakin’ love it.

2015-04-05 20.33.31

and then this gorgeous baby arrived in the mail from Mythic Delirium, Bone Swans, short stories by C.S.E. Cooney. In the proportions and the angle of the person’s head, the cover art reminds me of Klimt.

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so many pretties came in the mail recently.  i want to pet them and snuggle with them. (oh, these are for reading, not snuggling, you say? I can read AND snuggle! so there! Osmosis totally works, right?)

What looks good to you?

From Nightshade Books:

cash crash

Cash Crash Jubilee, May 2015, debut novel from Eli K. P. William (looks pretty cool! I dig the cover art, and it sounds like a fun read)

what it’s all about:

In a near future Tokyo, every action—from blinking to sexual intercourse—is intellectual property owned by corporations that charge licensing fees. A BodyBank computer system implanted in each citizen records their movements from moment to moment, and connects them to the audio-visual overlay of the ImmaNet, so that every inch of this cyber-dystopian metropolis crawls with information and shifting cinematic promotainment.

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Emissary, by Betsy Dornbusch April 2015 (emissaryThis is the 2nd book in a series. That alone takes it off my priority list, since i haven’t read the 1st book)

What it’s all about:

Draken vae Khellian, bastard cousin of the Monoean King, had risen far from his ignominious origins, becoming both a Bowrank Commander and a member of the Crown’s Black Guard. But when cursed black magic took his wife and his honor away, he fought past his own despair and grief, and carved out a new life in Akrasia. His bloody, unlikely path, chronicled in Exile: The First Book of the Seven Eyes, led him to a new love, and a throne.

Draken has seen too much blood . . . the blood of friends and of enemies alike. Peace is what he wants. Now he must leave his wife and newborn child in an attempt to forge an uneasy peace between the Monoean King and the kingdom of Akrasia. The long bloody shadow of Akrasia’s violent past hangs over his efforts like a shroud. But there are other forces at work. Peace is not something everybody wants . . . not even in the seemingly straightforward kingdom of Draken’s birth.

 

From the friendly folks at Pyr:

superposition

Superposition, by David Walton, April 2015. Sorry for the crappy photo, this is some striking cover art that didn’t come through very well.

what it’s all about: Jacob Kelley’s family is turned upside down when an old friend turns up, waving a gun and babbling about an alien quantum intelligence. The mystery deepens when the friend is found dead in an underground bunker…apparently murdered the night he appeared at Jacob’s house. Jacob is arrested for the murder and put on trial.

As the details of the crime slowly come to light, the weave of reality becomes ever more tangled, twisted by a miraculous new technology and a quantum creature unconstrained by the normal limits of space and matter. With the help of his daughter, Alessandra, Jacob must find the true murderer before the creature destroys his family and everything he loves.

 

From my friends at Tachyon Publications:

HannuCollected Fiction of Hannu Rajaniemi, May 2015. (Now this one, I’m super interested in. His novels intimidate me, but anyone can read a few short stores, right?)

what it’s all about: Inside the firewall the city is alive. Buildings breathe, cars attack, angels patrol, and hyper-intelligent pets rebel. Again, apologies for the fuzzy photo.

With unbridled invention and breakneck adventure, Hannu Rajaniemi is on the cutting-edge of science fiction. His post-apocalyptic, post-cyberpunk, and post-human tales are full of exhilarating energy and unpredictable optimism.

How will human nature react when the only limit to desire is creativity? When the distinction between humans and gods is as small as nanomachines—or as large as the universe? Whether the next big step in technology is 3D printing, genetic alteration, or unlimited space travel, Rajaniemi writes about what happens after.

 

There was also an envelope from Tor. what was inside it? A finished copy of Icefall, by Gillian Philip! I now have three (yes, three!) copies of this book! Anyone want one? the ARC and US version are up for grabs. the UK one stays with me forever, as it was a gift.

three icefalls

 

 

the mechanical tregillisThe Mechanical, by Ian Tregillis

Published March 10th, 2015

where I got it: received ARC from the publisher (thanks Orbit!)

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in an alternate history where the Dutch scientist and mathematician  Christiaan Huygens made more than just clocks and lenses, the world was changed forever when his clockwork servitors were perfected. These Clockwork servants, owned by the Crown and leased to the populace on 99 year leases, allowed the Dutch Empire to expand their control over trading posts, exploration, and world politics. Of course you’ll come to rule the world when you have an unlimited workforce that never sleeps, doesn’t have to eat, and never complains, and mechanical soldiers who never die.

 

Hundreds of years have gone by since the Guild of Horologists was created in 1680. America never existed, the Dutch never gave up New Amsterdam (which you know as Manhattan), and France is in shambles after a disastrous war, with much of the French nobility living in Montreal with their exiled King.

 

In an alternate history that never was, physics and chemistry fight horology and alchemy for control of the belief structure of the modern world. I’ll leave the plot chat to other reviewers, because I want to talk about everything that’s happening in The Mechanical underneath the plot, things like Tregillis’s genius treatment of chemistry vs alchemy,  warring philosophies over free will and identity, and the intersection of faith and compulsion.

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Since I can read minds, I knew you were looking for some good reviews, discussions and give aways. So here you go!

 

My Life My Books My Escape recently reviewed Mark Lawrence’s Broken Empire trilogy

The Writing Slices blog specializes in review of “How To Write” books.

Homeschool Reader recently reviewed The Warded Man, by Peter V. Brett. She loved most of it, but had issues with it as well.

Lynn at Lynn’s Book Blog loved Ferrett Steinmetz’s Flex as much as I did.

Holy crap, SFSignal has a give away for the entire trilogy of Wesley Chu’s Lives of Tao series!

Far Beyond Reality reviews Touch by Claire North

Shadowhawk’s Shade is enjoying his reread of Daughter of the Empire by Raymond E. Feist and Janny Wurts.

My Bookish Ways has an interview and  give away of Evensong by John Love

And speaking of John Love’s Evensong, I recently reviewed it over at SFSignal

Bibliotropic reviews The Goblin Emperor by Katherine Addison

Ferrett Steinmetz talks about how Stephen King kills off characters and Ken Liu’s The Grace of Kings

Books, Bones and Buffy reviews Zoo City by Lauren Beukes

From Couch to Moon reviews The Algebraist by Iain M. Banks

Civilian Reader reviews The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

Nice article over at Buzzfeed about Independent booksellers

101 Books blog finds snobby authors to be, well, snobby.

 


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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.