From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

Tag Archive for ‘review’ rss

review

Voices of Dragons by Carrie Vaughn

Carrie Vaughn is known for her series of novels about Kitty Norville, werewolf and radio talk show host. She has two more Kitty novels appearing in 2010 but, happily, she is expanding her range, with a couple non-Kitty novels also scheduled. Her first Young Adult novel is Voices of Dragons, which opens what looks to be another enjoyable series.

review

The Bell at Sealey Head by Patricia A. McKillip

The Bell at Sealey Head is prime Patricia A. McKillip: a lyrical, unpredictable fantasy novel of quiet elegance and complex characterization, every bit as marvelous and evocative as its lovely Kinuko Y. Craft cover. As you might expect from a World Fantasy Award and Mythopoeic Award-winning author who is one of America’s finest, The Bell at Sealey Head is one of the best books published last year. And, if you’re a true bibliophile, it’s unlikely you’ll find another novel that better demonstrates how and why you love books.

review

The Sorcerer’s House by Gene Wolfe

By Wolfe’s standards, The Sorcerer’s House is fairly simple. Told in the familiar—almost naïve—first-person prose of many recent Wolfe novels. it’s also quite absorbing, a very nice read, and for all its relative “simplicity” stuffed with puzzles and such Wolfean obsessions as twins, shapechanging, and virtue. em>The Sorcerer’s House is, in the end, an entertainment, clever and satisfying—not great Wolfe, but good Wolfe, which is recommendation enough.

review

Double Review: Foiled by Jane Yolen & Mike Cavallaro / Zeus: King of the Gods by George O’Connor

Two graphic books from the First Second (:01): Foiled, written by Jane Yolen and illustrated by Mike Cavallaro parries with plenty of well-known themes, including role-playing games, but for younger readers they are fresh and the execution is clever enough to capture the more jaded as well: a real winner. Zeus: King of the Gods by George O’Connor supplements classics such as D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths well.

review

Ghosts of Manhattan: A Tale of the Ghost by George Mann

Ghosts of Manhattan is the answer to a terrific high-concept question: What if the Great Gatsby was Batman in a steampunk Cthulhuvian universe? It may not win many converts to the steampunk, superhero, or cosmic horror subgenres; but it will please many devotees of those forms.

review

Repo Men: If I Only Had a Heart… Or a Brain

Welcome, my friends, to Dystopia. Right this way to Central Processing, where your curiosity, intellect, and will to resist are all removed . . . almost painlessly, even. Oh, and pay no attention to the wails of the downtrodden coming from behind that door.

review

Changeless: An Alexia Tarabotti Novel by Gail Carriger

Gail Carriger made quite a splash with her extraordinarily enjoyable debut novel, Soulless, a steampunk-spiced urban fantasy novel of manners. She and her charming protagonist, Alexia Maccon nee Tarabotti, return with Changeless, a steampunk novel of manners spiced with urban fantasy. With a few more novels this delightful, Ms. Carriger will be challenging Laurell K. Hamilton and Charlaine Harris for the top of the New York Times bestseller lists.

review

Not Less Than Gods by Kage Baker

The SF/F field mourned the untimely death of Kage Baker on January 31. Baker, in a writing career of not much more than a decade, established a reputation as one of the most purely entertaining of writers, yet a writer with serious purpose underlying the fun. She wrote novels and stories in several series, both science fiction and fantasy. Her best-known project was collectively called “the Company.” Not Less Than Gods is another Company novel (though at least one more is coming). It is related to her recent stories about the Gentleman’s Speculative Society. The Victorian setting combined with the advanced technology the GSS secretly develops gives the book something of a steampunk feel. It stands alone fairly well, but undoubtedly readers familiar with the Company in general and the later career of Bell-Fairfax in particular will get more out of it.

review

Its Quaint Events were Hammered Out: “Alice in Wonderland”

Tim Burton and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland sounds like a match made in heaven. Burton’s history of quirky fantasy seems particularly suited to the story of a contrary girl dropped into an even-more-contrary dreamland. Unfortunately, Burton was all out of dark whimsy years ago, and his Alice in Wonderland is little more than a reminder […]

review

The Crazies: You’d be Crazy Not to See It

It’s a “chili mac” kind of thing, really. Half zombie movie, half psycho thriller, with a dash of family interest and a pinch of buddy flick, the dish turns out both new and familiar.