The Barrow

7/31/06

Crossover in Stores & In Press

Joel Shepherd's Crossover is in stores now. And just in time, two excellent reviews have appeared:

Sandy Amazeen of Monsters & Critics says:

"The first in a new series that will follow the adventures of Cassandra Kresnov, this is more then an action packed sci-fi tale set far into the future. Delving deeply into issues of sentience, self-determination and artificial intelligence this is an examination of the possible political implications that will arise as artificial intelligence progresses and begins thinking for itself ....This fast paced read uses political intrigue, dirty dealings, old and new friendships to keep the story well grounded in human issues while raising some interesting points to ponder. Shepherd’s new series is certain to gain an instant following with this exciting and thoughtful entry."

Meanwhile, Henry L Lazarus writes in the Philadelphia Weekly Press:

"Pyr has brought the first of Joel Shepherd's tales of an all too-human android in a conservative future empire... Very exciting and impossible-to-put down. I can't wait for the other two to appear."

7/30/06

Ian McDonald Interview in Locus

The August 2006 issue of Locus magazine features an interview with Ian McDonald, in which he talks about such things as growing up in Northern Ireland, the genesis of River of Gods, and the 1950 World Cup:

"There's a huge gaping hole in science fiction. A lot has been done about China, but people have overlooked India.... Historically, the UK and Ireland have been much closer to India, and it has enriched our culture-and, thank God, our cookery-immeasureably."

There is also a substantial discussion of his next novel, Brasyl, which we'll be releasing next year with another Stephan Martiniere cover.

7/23/06

Mike Resnick on the Air

Five-time Hugo winner Mike Resnick, author of Starship: Mutiny and the recent short story collection New Dreams for Old, will be interviewed on July 30, 2006 on Cincinnati radio station WVXU 91.7, around 7pm.


The Pyr Meme is Spreading

The wonderful group blog Meme Therapy has uploaded a number of Pyr-related posts lately.

First, there is an interview with Genetopia author Keith Brooke:

"I'd be very surprised if in ten years we 'log on' to the net: it'll just be there, part of the way we communicate with each other and with our household appliances, part of the way the world is automated around us: our awareness of it as 'the internet' will have dwindled. As this sense of being permanently logged on permeates our lives, it's bound to shift the way we communicate and learn about the world and discuss what's going on..."

Then, David Louis Edelman joins several other interesting folks in opinioning about the dangers of corporations:

"Once you eliminate the middle class from the equation, you're back to the feudal system of lords and serfs. And that system wasn't such a great deal for the serfs."

Finally, Joel Shepherd, whose novel Crossover should pop up on shelves any day now, describes his Cassandra Kresnov novels:

"I wanted to make Cassandra the anti-'android cliche'. She doesn't suffer from a desperate desire to be human (she indignantly insists she already IS human), and she's quite happy being what she is, although the politics behind her creation are another matter. She has free will and personality like any of us, and wrestles constantly with the moral implications of possessing incredibly dangerous abilities, and what therefore she should do with her life."

7/21/06

Rollin' on the River

More love for Ian McDonald:

“A painterly, colorful writer, McDonald…manages to slot together the many puzzle pieces of his plot in coherent, clever bursts of illumination…Adventurous, mysterious, suspenseful and engagingly speculative, with steamy sex scenes and a redolent, eye-popping atmosphere, River of Gods should have appeal well beyond sci fi fans.”

June 18 review in Portsmouth Herald, Portsmouth, Virginia

7/16/06

Infoquake Interview & Paragaea Review

David Louis Edelman, author of Infoquake, is interviewed by Cat Rambo on Suite 101:

"For the most part, I'm just a jeans and button-down shirt kind of guy. I do like to wear hats. I've got a black fedora that I wear a lot, and it's turned into a nice little bit of marketing. People tend to remember who you are if you're always wearing a distinguishing piece of clothing."

Meanwhile, William Lexner is quite happy with Chris Roberson's Paragaea, as he posts over at I Hope I Didn't Just Give Away the Ending:

"Roberson dedicates the book to Edgar Rice Burroughs, (Barsoom, Tarzan) Alex Raymond, (Flash Gordon) and David Gerrold. (Land of The Lost, Star Trek, much else) There are obvious nods to each in Paragaea, and each were accomplished quite well. If classic adventure yarns turn your crank, then Paragaea is that one classic tale you've never been able to find in stores or libraries. It's a throwback, a real gem."

7/13/06

So Much Love for Justina

A whole heap of love for Justina Robson cropped up this week. Her forthcoming Pyr novel, Mappa Mundi (out this coming September), garnered a starred review in the July 10th issue of Publishers Weekly:

“British author Robson's third novel to appear in the U.S. (after Natural History and Silver Screen) maintains throat-tightening suspense from its teasingly enigmatic introduction of its major characters to its painful conclusion that evil will succeed if well-meaning people try to achieve good at any cost...Shortlisted for the 2001 Arthur C. Clarke Award, this near-future SF thriller presents convincing characters caught in profound moral dilemmas brought home through exquisite attention to plot details and setting.”

Then, Dave Itzkoff's latest New York Times piece (July 9, 2006) reviews Justina's Living Next Door to the God of Love (Bantam), with glowing things to say about her prose:

As in Robson's previous novels, Natural History, Mappa Mundi and Silver Screen, the first thing a reader notices about her work is the exquisite precision and thoughtfulness of her writing. There is simply no moment too small, no interaction too seemingly insignificant for her to resist putting her distinctive signature on it…”

A big congratulations Justina!

7/11/06

Michael Blumlein Reading

Pyr author Michael Blumlein is appearing in the upcoming SF in SF reading series. I wish I still lived in San Francisco so I could attend events like this! From their press release:

SF in SF

A monthly Science Fiction
author reading series

JULY 18

"GENRE BENDERS"

MICHAEL BLUMLEIN
and MICHAEL CADNUM



MICHAEL BLUMLEIN, M.D. is the author of X,Y (now a minor motion picture), THE BRAINS OF RATS, and most recently THE HEALER, headlining Pyr's prestigious new SF list. A frequent Bram Stoker (horror) and World Fantasy Award nominee, Blumlein lives in San Francisco where he both practices and teaches medicine at the University of California.

"The Healer [is a] haunting literary SF novel...original, surreal and extraordinary!"
--Publishers Weekly

MICHAEL CADNUM has been a National Book Award Finalist and a Fellow of the National Endowment for the Arts. He was twice a finalist for the Mystery Writers of America Edgar Award as well as a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Award. CAN'T CATCH ME, a collection of his short stories, has just been released by Tachyon. He lives in Albany, CA.

"Cadnum knocks us off our platitudes and sends us sliding elsewhere...and we are smoothly swept into a new field of perception." --Ted Kooser, US Poet Laureate

7 pm, Tues July 18
New College Valencia Theatre
777 Valencia St, SF

$4, free to New College community
Discussion and book signing afterward

SF in SF is sponsored by New College of California
and curated by Adam Cornford
Karen Williams and Terry Bisson

7/10/06

Future So Bright We're Quaking

Barnes & Nobles' Paul Goat Allen just sent an email informing us of his upcoming review of Infoquake and interview with author David Louis Edelman. The review & interview will appear in August in the B&N sff newsletter as well as on B&N's Science Fiction/Fantasy homepage, and I will certainly point out a link to it then. But for now, I'm thrilled to report that Paul says:

"Brilliantly blending the cutthroat intrigues of the high-tech business world with revolutionary world building, Edelman could quite possibly be the illegitimate lovechild of Donald Trump and Vernor Vinge. Infoquake is one of the most impressive science fiction debuts to come along in years - highly recommended."

Obviously, we are thrilled with the comparison to Vinge which joins prior comparisons to Charles Stross and Cory Doctorow. Not bad company to keep! Meanwhile, an interview with Edelman is already up at the blog Meme Therapy, where Edelman explains:

"When I started writing Infoquake, I gave myself a challenge. If you had virtually unlimited computing power and a virtually unlimited supply of energy, what could you do? Keep in mind that neither of these things is an impossibility. Moore's Law continues to predict exponential growth in computing power, and there are all kinds of breakthroughs in solar energy just around the corner."

Finally, Paula Guran blogs about her humorous encounter with Edelman and Yours Truly at the recent Book Expo America, then goes on to kindly praise Infoquake on her blog Dark Echo:

"It is sf, yes, but sf about cut-throat business practices and competitive programming (a way-cool concept of sorta programming in thin air), with an endearingly sociopathic protagonist, and lotsa, lotsa nifty techno-supposings, and an interesting concept of guild/spiritual family/religion/union groups in a technocracy. Highly imaginative use of the current Zeitgeist."


Sketchley is Action-Packed

Rob H. Benford posts his review of Martin Sketchley's The Destiny Mask to SFFWorld:

"Few middle books in trilogies are as full of action as Sketchley’s, he doesn’t give the reader much room to breathe. While he was able to throw the characters into the plot and action, he still has a chance to develop new characters and examine, albeit briefly, the landscape and politics of his future world....The twin sons and their disparate development provide food for thought in the nature vs. nurture argument, seemingly in favor of the nurture side. In between the chases and escapes, there is some time to consider the nature of government, revolution, and sticking with one’s beliefs, despite the odds."

7/4/06

Science Fiction Weekly Gives New Dreams for Old an A-

Mike Resnick's short story collection, New Dreams for Old, just got an A- over at Science Fiction Weekly:

"...when Resnick is good, he's very, very good, and when he's bad he's ... well, still interesting. ....Resnick uses science-fiction tropes very effectively to enhance the emotional and intellectual impact of his stories. It can also be noted that although the short fiction of Mike Resnick appears in many ways to be very traditional and far from the cutting edge of current SF, he is a master of metaphor and often uses other complex literary devices quite skillfull....an important collection of stories by one of the science fiction field's best writers."

7/3/06

Crowing About Genetopia

Donna Jones, at SFCrowsnest.com, called Keith Brooke's Genetopia "a genuinely great read" in her review:

"Genetopia manages to elicit all sorts of emotional input from those that read it. Never failing to hit the right note at the right time in the story. Simply brilliant!"

Laugh and Think at the Same Time

Nicki Lynch posts a review of Mike Resnick's new short story collection, New Dreams for Old, at SFRevu:

"
Mike is an old-fashioned storyteller who delights in telling tall tales and tweaking the notions of the reader. His characters are people we all know, they just live in a different time or place. The stories are build on 'what ifs' and 'how abouts'. If you're looking for short stories that will have you thinking and laughing, this collection will be a good read.... New Dreams for Old is a pleasing collection of stories well told, with characters and situations that will entertain you and get you thinking."