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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Fate of Worlds by Larry Niven and Edward M. Lerner



I read Ringworld in the early 1970’s and frankly I know I liked it as I ranked it as an E for excellent in my book database but beside the basic premise, I don’t remember a great deal.   This book would have served me better 20 years ago.  As is it gathers together the characters from several books and a couple of series and attempts tie them together under the label of the Known Earth Series. 

Frankly I’m not sure this was a wrap up and not a precursor to a new series.   The number of variables, races, venues and philosophies strains my recollection.  I have only read 28 of Niven’s books and have uniformly enjoyed them.   Sadly I didn’t really enjoy this because I have just enough recollection of the players but have trouble remembering the game they played.  Some reviews I read stated it stands alone well, I would disagree and feel at least brushing up on the precursors would make the book more compelling.

I would recommend either going to Wikipedia and brushing up on background or tracking down all the books and reading them.
From Wikpedia:
Five prequels have been written, set in the same Ringworld universe, and written in collaboration:

I did enjoy the books when I read them and if it had been more recently I am sure I would have enjoyed this book more.   I do recommend the Niven style of creating warm, memorable characters.

Body of work of <a type="amzn">Larry Niven </a>
Body of work of <a type="amzn">Edward M. Lerner </a>

Web sites:
http://www.edwardmlerner.com/
This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Iron Elves trilogy, Ashes of a Black Frost




 The third and final in the Iron Elves trilogy, Ashes of a Black Frost, will be available in paperback on September 25, 2012!   I really liked this trilogy follow the links to my reviews. 
Praise for Book III, Ashes of a Black Frost:
“Evans ably continues the saga of the determined and driven Iron Elves and their valiant leader, Maj. Konowa Swift Dragon, in this gritty follow-up to 2009’s The Light of Burning Shadows…heroic action keeps Evans’s fans coming back.”—Publishers Weekly
 “A fast-paced, action-filled, fitting end to an epic tale between forces of good, evil and those with a bit of both, filled with characters from fairy tales to nightmares who all play their roles beautifully, especially the enigmatic Konowa Swift Dragon. You’ll want to read this trilogy…”—Romantic Times, ****Four Star Review
Praise for Book II, The Light of Burning Shadows:
“Evans evokes the era of Napoleon with muskets and slashing swords while neatly mixing in military fantasy, swords and sorcery, and a great deal of success; readers will no doubt end up desperate for the next volume.”—Publishers Weekly, starred review
Praise for Book I, A Darkness Forged in Fire:
“Evans’s first novel heralds the launch of an outstanding military fantasy series…Strong storytelling, a compelling cast of heroes and villains, and a keen knowledge of military tactics of the Napoleonic era make this a priority purchase for most libraries and a splendid read for fans of both sf and fantasy military adventure. Highly recommended.” —Library Journal, starred review
About the Author:Chris Evans is the author of Ashes of a Black Frost, A Darkness Forged in Fire and The Light of Burning Shadows in the Iron Elves series.  He is a historian as well as an editor of military history and current affairs, including the highly successful Stackpole Military History series.  Born in Canada, he now lives in New York City.  He welcomes visitors to his website at www.ironelves.com.

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Steelers Fandom Infects Feline



I read recently that cat videos and photos get more hits than any topic on the web except for porn.   Well, you won't find any porn here but in this photo from my grandkids I would like to introduce my grand-cat! 
Having worked for US Steel as a young pup, I have been a Steeler fan ever since.  My gkids are not Steeler fans but they know how to tickle their grandfather's funnybone!


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Blood Riders by Michael P. Spradlin


I am not sure how to classify this book.  It is a meld of Western, Steam Punk, SciFi and horror.   There are classic Steam Punk toys, cowboys and vampire like creatures populating this book.  It seems like that is too many genres crammed into one story but somehow it worked and was a very entertaining book.

Jonas Hollister was a likeable, engaging character.  Spradlin did an excellent job crafting his characters.   Hollister displays an open attitude and stubborn courage.  Chee, his mysterious multinational sidekick provides a positive counter point.  

The plot was interesting and the female protagonist, Shaniah, was soulfully captured by an “ordinary” human much to her dismay.   The action was plentiful and I enjoyed dog the dog.  This book should appeal to those who like all of the genres mentioned above.   The author sets up a series with Jonas as the lead.  It should be a very good series.

I enjoyed the book and I recommend it.

Body of work of <a type="amzn"> Michael P. Spradlin </a>


This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Haunting Obsession Free eBook Tuesday 9/18/12 and Wed 9/19/12


Haunting Obsession will be free on Amazon Kindle today through Wednesday http://www.amazon.com/Haunting-Obsession-ebook/dp/B008Y2SVS4


This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Odd Girl Out by Timothy Zahn




 Frank Compton, a government whistle blower is back with faithful side kick and engineered schizophrenic Bayta.   The Modhri, group mind omnipotent evil opponent, is willing to compromise to destroy an abomination.  Much of the  action once again takes place on the Quadrail. 

The concept of the Quadrail and it’s interconnection of galactic empires is the thread that ties the plots of the books in this series, Night Train To Rigel and The Third Lynx being the first two.

Bayta discovers a kindred soul in a young, vulnerable girl that she and Frank end up befriending.   McMicking, the chameleon like fixer, pops up with his own agenda but continues to surprise Compton with his very able and deadly support.
There is a similarity to the books of the series but each tale has it’s own, often lethal twist. 

The series continues to grow on me and I enjoyed this book more than the last.

I recommend it.    

Body of work of <a type="amzn" >Timothy Zahn</a>

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TimothyZahn

This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Help KICKSTART The Writers’ Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy



The Writers’ Workshop of Science Fiction and Fantasy is a collection of essays and interviews with some of most influential names in the industry; each article covering a specific element of the craft of writing science fiction and fantasy.  The collaborators in this wonderful anthology include:

Neil Gaiman – “Where Do You Get Your Ideas?”


Orson Scott Card – “On Rhetoric and Style.”


Lou Anders – “Nebulous Matters, or Speculations on Subgenre.”


Lucy Snyder – “Ursula K. LeGuin Talks About A Lifetime in the Craft.”


James Gunn – “Beginnings.”


George Zebrowski – “Middles.”


Jay
Lake – “Endings.”

Nayad Monroe – “Tim Powers Talks About Writing Supernatural Awe and More.”


Pam Sargent – “Talking Too Much, or Not Enough: Dialogue in Science Fiction and Fantasy.”


Geoff Fuller -- “How Alien the Alien: A Primer on Viewpoint.”


Nancy Kress – “The Green-Skinned Zorn Laughed With Grief: Character and Emotion in Science Fiction and Fantasy.”


Harry Turtledove – “Alternate History: the How-To of What Might Have Been.”


Kelly Green – “Larry Niven Talks About the Collaborative Process.”


Joe Haldeman – “Hemingway Talks About Writing.”


Nisi Shawl – “Unbending Gender.”


Alan Dean Foster – “Reverse Engineering: Writing Novelizations.”


Alethea Kontis – “Kevin J. Anderson Talks About Spin-off Novels and Prequels.”


Elizabeth Bear -- “Tactics of Worldbuilding.”


Jackie Gamber–”Ann and Jeff Vandermeer Talk About Weird Fiction”


Michael Knost – Short fiction editors Ellen Datlow, Stanley Schmidt, Gordon Van Gelder, James Patrick Kelly, Mike Resnick, and John Joseph Adams discuss what they are looking for when reading submissions.


I'm self published. My books are selling. Most of them are issue oriented so I have hopes I am helping someone. I want to be a better writer and I want to write better books. I am blown away by the quality of the writers Seventh Star has garnered for this book. How could you not want to support this!  I am a backer!
 
This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Asylum Interviews: Bronx by Jocelynn Drake



This book was identified as a short story.  It appears to relate to two other books/short stories all under the category of Asylum Tales.   A chastised warlock operating as a tattoo artist makes a new friend and saves a friend from himself.

Ms. Drake paints good characters.  The fallen warlock could have used more back story but was likeable and open minded.   Bronx, the troll, was also a likeable character.   The concept of tattoos having power based on the design and the ink was a novel touch.   I have not seen that anywhere else and it provides a whole realm of possibilities for future stories.

There was adequate action and thought provoking soul searching.   This looks like it will be a good series.
I recommend the book.

Body of work of <a type="amzn"> Jocelynn Drake</a>
Web Site: http://www.jocelynndrake.com/


This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Third Lynx by Timothy Zahn




Frank Compton, our government whistle blower is back.   He has discovered who he really works for and continues his campaign against the Modhri. 

The concept of the Quadrail and it’s interconnection of galactic empires is an excellent basis for the series plot.  Frank Compton’s co-opting of his employer’s prerogatives and his outspoken and conspicuous behavior gets him into trouble, again.

There is an evolving, albeit glacially slow, relationship with Bayta.   Bayta as Frank’s reluctant and naive sidekick plays a good counterpoint to his impulsiveness.  Bayta is also starting to display “normal” human responses much to her own dismay.

Recurring characters add both villains and allies to this eclectic mix of aliens and classic train mystery story.

The series is growing on me and I enjoyed this book more than the last.

I recommend it.    

Body of work of <a type="amzn" >Timothy Zahn</a>

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TimothyZahn



This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

FREE E-BOOKS TODAY...September 4,2012

FREE E-BOOKS TODAY...September 4,2012
 

Remnants of Life
This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Night Train to Rigel by Timothy Zahn


A government whistle blower is sacked.   The night he agrees to work for private enterprise, a body drops a train ticket at his feet.   Apparently unfamiliar with the adage regarding curiosity, Frank Compton embarks on a galactic wide adventure.

Frank’s background is a bit sketchy.   He appears to have been some type of agent which explains his many skills.   Zahn does his normal good job of creating a reasonable scenario (reasonable based on my love of scifi perhaps) and crafting a wealth of unique alien characters.

The plot moved well and there was plenty of action.   It was a good story and I look forward to the next book in the five book series. 

I recommend it.    

Body of work of <a type="amzn" >Timothy Zahn</a>

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TimothyZahn
This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

A Video Interview with R. J. Sullivan Author of Haunting Obsession!


 My interview with R. J. Sullivan Author of 
Haunting Obsession!




This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.