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ABOUT THE STORE : NEWSLETTER
DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News from Borderlands Books
Chapter One - Event Information, News, and Special Features
Mark J. Ferrari, THE BOOK OF JOBY, (Tor Books, Hardcover, $27.95, and Trade Paperback, $15.95,) Saturday, January 12th at 3:00pm
JUST ANNOUNCED! Robin Hobb, RENEGADE'S MAGIC, (Eos Books, Hardcover, $25.95,) Saturday, January 19th at 3:00 pm
Peter S. Beagle and Mark J. Ferrari are guests of SF in SF at the
Variety Preview Room, 582 Market Street, Saturday, January 19th at 7:00
(for more information check the end of this section)
Terry Pratchett diagnosed with Alzheimer's: Sadly, Terry Pratchett has
been diagnosed with a rare form of early onset Alzheimer's, as he
stated online December 11th. <http://www.paulkidby.com/news/index.html>.
He added: "I would like people to bear in mind that I have been
diagnosed quite early after an MRI scan and a whole afternoon of
tests. While nothing is certain, one does not have to be unduly
optimistic to believe that I will be around and, hopefully, working for
some time to come. My advice, therefore, is to calm down and
await events. I have not actually gone, yet."
* Brandon Sanderson to complete final Robert Jordan book: Tor
Books has announced that fantasy author Brandon Sanderson will complete
the final book in the Wheel of Time series. From their press
release - ". . . The new novel, A MEMORY OF LIGHT, will be the twelfth
and final book in the beloved fantasy series which has sold over 14
million copies in North America and over 30 million copies
worldwide. The last four books in the series were all #1 New York
Times bestsellers, and for over a decade fans have been eagerly
awaiting the final novel that would bring the epic story to its
Harriet Popham Rigney, Jordan’s beloved wife and editor, said of her
decision to have Sanderson complete the last book in The Wheel of Time
series: 'I have chosen Brandon Sanderson to complete Robert Jordan’s
great work, and I am absolutely delighted that he accepted. I
will of course be editing this book as I have all of the other books of
The Wheel of Time.'
President and Publisher of Tor Books, Tom Doherty, also expressed his
happiness with Harriet’s decision, saying: 'I am delighted that Harriet
has chosen Brandon to complete Robert Jordan’s magnificent and timeless
epic.'" Read the entire press release here <http://www.tor-forge.com/NewsArticle.aspx?articleId=647>
* In further news, Mr. Sanderson offers a thoughtful and eloquent
commentary on censorship and all the religious hoopla surrounding the
release of the film "The Golden Compass," which is based on Philip
Pullman's novel. This is an article well worth reading. <http://www.brandonsanderson.com/article/52/EUOLogy-On-Pullman-and-Censorship>
* New blog about science fiction and futurism! We received the
following from Charlie Jane Anders: "Are you an unrepentant neophile?
Do you sometimes think post-apocalyptic futures and alien invasions are
pretty cool? Want to know what's going to happen next to the
climate, the shape of skyscrapers, the contents of your genome, or your
favorite scifi TV show? Then it's time to check out
io9.com. io9 is a brand new blog about science fiction and
futurism published by Gawker Media (and edited by yours truly [and
Annalee Newitz and Kevin Kelly]!), and it just went live today!
We'll be bringing you the latest about science fiction in all media, as
well as futuristic science, design, and art. Ride the nanowires
over to io9.com today. Brain implant sold separately." <http://io9.com/> Plus, they just did a mini-feature on us! <http://io9.com/343019/o-beloved-local-scifi-bookstore> Thanks, guys!
* Christopher Lee's reading of CHILDREN OF HURIN finds a U.S. Distributor:
* "W00t" is Miriam Webster's word of 2007:
* Solaris offers a free download of Jeffrey Thomas' DEADSTOCK: <http://www.solarisbooks.com/press-releases/press-release-deadstock.asp>
* SF Signal has a brand new feature on their site -- the Mind
Meld! "In this series of posts, we pose a single question to a
slice of the sf/f community and, depending on the question, other folks
as well. . . . What we hope to get is an interesting cross-section of
views and opinions that open a particular topic up for discussion. We'd
love to hear what you think!" You can read responses to their
first question from a bunch of interesting folks in the field,
including Borderlands' owner, Alan Beatts, here: <http://www.sfsignal.com/archives/005988.html>
From The Office
Happy New Year everyone!
I hope that you all had a nice time through the holidays and that 2008
finds you well. I had a great time this last month. My
brother and his family were in town for all of December, which was just
great and for New Years I went to New Orleans with my daughter.
It was her first trip there and she loved it (takes after her dad that
way, I'm guessing).
I was a little concerned about what New Orleans would be like. I
hadn't been back there since before the hurricane in 2005 and I was
really concerned that it wouldn't be the same. Actually I had no
doubts that the city wouldn't be the same. No city can go through
what New Orleans did and not be changed. What I was concerned
about, in my selfish way, was the French Quarter and (to a lesser
degree) the area around Frenchman St. and the Garden District.
Everyone visitor sees a unique face of a city. I'm sure that
there are plenty of tourists who think of Union Square when they think
of San Francisco whereas that's something I actively try _not_ to think
about. But, when _I_ think of London, I see Piccadily Circus in
my mind's eye (no doubt a result of stumbling through it late at night
and drunk on my way home from nightclubs when I lived in South
Kensington), though I suspect most Londoners think about it with the
same "oh-sweet-christ" reflex that I have for Union Square.
So, without apology, I'll admit that the French Quarter _is_ New
Orleans for me. All told I've probably spent over three months in
New Orleans and at least 90% of that time was in the Quarter.
Hell, there was a two week trip when I never set foot out of there
except to go to and from the train station. I don't think that
there is a place on earth and outside of San Francisco where I feel
more comfortable and at home. I really, deeply and passionately
love it there. And, by extension, I love the rest of the city
even if I don't spend much time in it -- the Quarter may be New Orleans
to me but I know that it can't exist without the support of the rest of
the city. It's a delightful symbiosis -- the rest of the city
provides the structure that the Quarter needs to exist; the airport,
the shipping, housing, basic services like power and water, and in
exchange the Quarter brings in the money that the city needs to
survive. Without a healthy city behind it, the Quarter will
sicken and eventually die.
So, as I traveled out there I was scared. I was afraid of what I would find.
I don't know what I expected. Closed businesses without a doubt,
probably poor service and food at the restaurants, perhaps even a
vaguely shell-shocked feeling from the locals and the kind of crime
problems that used to vex the city in the '90s.
I was surprised.
Want a piece of news that has hardly been mentioned by the national
sources, the news that contradicts the travel advice, the news that
contradicts the public misinformation? _New Orleans hasn't
changed much at all_! . . . at least from the standpoint of a visitor.
That's not to say that there haven't been major changes that have
affected everyone who lives there or that there aren't still large
areas that need to be rebuilt. Nor am I ignoring the suffering of
the residents and the trials that they and their city still have to
face. But my point is that there is _no_ reason not to visit New
Orleans. In fact, there are two very good reasons to visit right
now (or at least very soon).
First off, this year may be, all things considered, the best Mardi Gras
in a long time. Since people are still feeling hesitant to visit,
the crowds this year may be just perfect -- enough people to have a
hell of a party but not so crowded that you can't get a hotel, a
restroom, a table to eat at or space at the bar for a drink. All
these advantages will apply even if it's not Mardi Gras. Hotel
rates seem cheaper than in the past and availability is way up.
And you can get a table at some of the best restaurants in the city
without making a reservation a month in advance.
Second, possibly the best thing that you can do to help New Orleans is
visit, spend money, have a good time; then go home and tell people
about it. Tourism is the life blood of that city and anything to
speed people's return is a huge help.
It's also a big help to dispel some of the inaccurate perceptions that
abound about how badly the city was damaged and how slow it's been to
recover. A recent survey of Americans living outside of Lousiana
by the University of New Orleans Survey Research Center < http://poli.uno.edu/unopoll/studies/SRC1%20Press%20Release.htm > revealed some surprising results --
Of the people surveyed:
36.6% believe the water supply is still contaminated (I drank tap water through most of my trip),
33.4% believe the French Quarter was one of the hardest hit areas (the Quarter never flooded),
32.8% believe that few French Quarter businesses have re-opened (though
there were slightly more spaces for rent, almost all the businesses I
saw were open as usual),
And, last but not least, 26.5% believe that _parts of New Orleans
remain under water_ (fer gods' sake, I'm not even going to comment on
Granted, I know that good news doesn't sell as well as bad, but it
still seems like there's been a shocking shortage of news about how New
Orleans has recovered in the past two years. Imagine for a moment
what it would be like, after the next really big earthquake and after
we San Franciscans had spent two long, hard years putting the City back
together, if everyone in the rest of the US thought we were still
living in tents under martial law.
Like SF in 1906, New Orleans has been through one of the greatest tests
a city can withstand and is rising, stronger (and even more fun-loving)
Pass the word -- New Orleans is open for business as much as
ever. If you've never been there -- go. If you've been
wanting to go to Mardi Gras but didn't want to worry about the crowds
-- get your ticket fast 'cause it's early this year (Fat Tuesday is
Feb. 5th) and it's going to be a hell of a party.
Maybe I'll see you there.
Happy New Year,
Top Sellers At Borderlands
1) Halting State by Charles Stross
2) Pirate Freedom by Gene Wolfe
3) Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman
4) The Wild Girls by Pat Murphy
5) Confessor by Terry Goodkind
6) Fatal Revenant by Stephen R. Donaldson
7) Crooked Little Vein by Warren Ellis
8) Dreamsongs vol. 1 by George R.R. Martin
9) Spook Country by William Gibson
10) The Prefect by Alastair Reynolds (UK edition)
1) The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman
2) The Android's Dream by John Scalzi
3) Three Days to Never by Tim Powers
tie with The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman
4) The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy
5) Forest Mage by Robin Hobb
tie with The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
6) Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson
7) Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
8) Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs
9) Rainbow's End by Vernor Vinge
10) Dust by Elizabeth Bear tie with
For a Few Demons More by Kim Harrison
1) World War Z by Max Brooks
2) The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie
3) Wastelands: Stories of the Apocalypse edited by John Joseph Adams
tie with Butcher Bird by Richard Kadrey
4) His Dark Materials (Omnibus Edition) by Philp Pullman
5) Rewired: The Post-Cyberpunk Anthology edited by James Patrick Kelly and John Kessel
Notes From a DVD Geek
Happy New Year, movie fans. The new year is a good time to
talk about new versions, and old versions of some classic movies.
First up is Rob Zombie's interesting and earnest remake of John
Carpenter's "Halloween". As Carpenter himself is a director who
has "re-imagined" many movies to good effect, I was eager to see what
could happen to the "Halloween" franchise, re-imagined by one of my
favorite new directors.
First let me start out by qualifying what it is I like about Rob
Zombie. Mr. Zombie seems to have a genuine love for, and
understanding of, the genres and forms that he has worked in.
"House of a Thousand Corpses," for example, was a much better
"re-imagining" of Tobe Hooper's "Texas Chainsaw Massacre," then was the
recent remake of "Saw," for example. In his sequel to "House,"
("The Devil's Rejects"), Zombie turned in a completely different
direction, paying tribute to the hyper-violent visions and cinematic
outsider-ness of Sam Peckinpah.
In "Halloween," Zombie makes a conscious decision to base his movie
around something that flies in the face of Carpenter's Halloween
mythology. In Zombie's movie, monsters like Michael are made, not born.
In Carpenter's original movie, the randomness of "the Shape's"
evilness -- its manifestation in the young Michael Meyers -- is without
hint, and without any direct causes. The terror of the slasher
genre that Carpenter tied into was that of the randomness of violence,
be it car crashes, or mass murderers like Texas's infamous Charles
Whitman, or random street crime. Michael Meyers in the original
"Halloween" movie represented all these modern manifestations of random
In Zombie's "Halloween," much of the movie is spent detailing (often in
excruciating detail) the life of young Michael Meyers. The power
of Zombie's movie comes from recasting Meyers not as random evil, but
as a natural reflection of the everyday monstrousness that we all
participate in. Our society makes monsters every day, and we
mostly don't notice, until they start killing people (a la Columbine,
Once Michael grows up and returns to Haddonfield, Zombie further
explores this theme, while at the same time accurately recapturing the
sparse, intense pacing of the original movie. Michael's baby
sister has been adopted, and has had a life that is the polar opposite
of young Michael. Her home life is stable and loving, she has a
group of supportive friends, and while she isn't the most popular girl
at school, she certainly isn't alienated from her peer group.
She's a stable young woman, ready to face the world. Then
Michael shows up, and by the last frame, she's been destroyed, and made
just as much of a monster as Michael.
The attention to detail, singular vision, and this core theme of
monsters that are made can be seen in the casting choices, and are
manifested beautifully in a temporal match-cut that happens late in the
movie. Visually, Michael's sister becomes the image of a young
Michael Meyers, after she's been subjected to the brutality and
monstrousness of her brother's murders. It was a striking moment
towards the end of the film that really crystallized Zombie's
intentions. I'm going into a lot of detail on this movie because
chances are there isn't much about the basic story or premise of
"Halloween" that you don't already know. What I want to get
across is that this remake isn't your average remake. The intent,
interest and level of sophistication that went into this project is
remarkable, and definitely worth checking out.
John Carpenter's other influential horror movie that was recently
remade, "The Fog," didn't fair nearly as well as Halloween. It is
actually an interesting study, to look at how, without trying, the
makers of the remake get everything wrong that was right in the
original film, and address none of the original film's shortcomings.
Another film in the "stick with Carpenter's original" category is
"Assault on Precinct 13". While the original film was a huge cult
hit, it had numerous problems, and hasn't aged very well. It
speaks volumes about the (in)competence of the folks who remade it that
the original film still towers over the remake.
Speaking of towering, John Carpenter's "The Thing" towers above all
other remakes, as a gold standard of what is possible. The film
had groundbreaking and still impressive special effects, combined with
a tight script and excellent pacing that keeps ratcheting up the
tension. If you've never seen it, or if it's been years since
you've seen it, do yourself a favor, and watch it again.
Returning to monumental failures masquerading as remakes, I give you
the "Dawn of the Dead" remake. While the original movie had
plenty of problems, the ONLY thing the remake had going for it was the
2 minute intro, which had nothing to do with the rest of the movie.
Some people point to the "fast mover" zombies of the remake, but
if I want fast moving zombies, I'll stick with "28 Days Later".
Speaking of "28 Days Later," which itself was an homage to "The Omega
Man," Will Smith just inflicted a perfectly acceptable, and yet
incredibly frustrating, version of the Richard Matheson novel, I AM
LEGEND. The frustrating thing is that the first half of the movie
is pretty good, and is filled with hints that it's going to remain true
to the book.
And then, halfway through the movie, it swerves away from greatness,
sticking to the hokey "Omega Man" ending, with a whole bunch of
sentimentalism seemingly stolen from M. Night Shyamalan's "Signs".
The last voice-over, a hackneyed attempt to justify the title
(the meaning of which was totally jettisoned in this version) was the
straw that broke the camel's back for me. I hated this movie.
Probably far more then it deserved to be hated, but there you go.
I mention this Will Smith version of "I Am Legend," not because it's
available on DVD. Rather, the first adaptation of
Matheson's I AM LEGEND is available, and well worth checking out,
because it's incredibly successful in ways that neither the Smith nor
Heston versions were. Vincent Price delivers a gob-smackingly
hammy performance that just works, and the visual look and feel for
this film clearly inspired a young George Romero. Be sure to
check out "The Last Man On Earth," you won't be sorry.
Another insultingly bad remake was "The Haunting," which was supposedly
based on Shirley Jackson's THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE, or based on the
classic Robert Wise movie, "The Haunting of Hill House". It was
really hard to tell, because it was so bad. Do yourself a favor,
and stick with the beautifully tense Robert Wise version of this
Shirley Jackson Novel.
"The Omen" remake really sucked. . . and most insultingly, they got rid
of the original score from the original "Omen". "Bad call Ripley
. . . bad call."
"The Fly" remake, directed by David Cronenberg, stands next to "The
Thing" as one of the most successful remakes ever. This one also
featured groundbreaking special effects, and an incredibly moving
performance by a young Jeff Goldblum.
I think I've already mentioned how bad the remake of "The Hitcher" was, but it was so bad, it deserves to be mentioned again.
There's a whole host of really bad US remakes of Asian horror films.
The sad thing is, some of the original Asian films were already bad
knockoffs of "The Ring". Fourth generation crap is still crap.
Too many and too bad to list individually. It's too
"The Amityville Horror" was remade . . . and it wasn't all that bad.
It can be said to have been better then the original, but that's
not saying much, considering the original movie was a stinker anyway.
"Willard" was a weird little film that was remade in 2003. The
remake is also a weird little film, carried entirely by the weirdness
of the King of Weird Actors, Crispin Glover.
The original Val Lewton movie "The Cat People" (directed by Robert
Wise) was remade in the 80's, starring Nastassja Kinski. Kinski
is all the remake had going for it, and it's not enough to be better
then the original Jacques Tourneur masterpiece.
"The House on Haunted Hill" remake may not have been a great movie, but
it was extremely fun. As the original film was never a great
movie either, but rather a campy excuse to let Vincent Price be Vincent
Price, I have to respect the postmoderness of having Geoffrey Rush do
an incredible Vincent Price impersonation. Really cool visuals
also helped the remake out.
The Remake of "13 Ghosts" relied too heavily on the visual techniques
of "House on Haunted Hill," and had a weak script, and lacked the
wonderfully wacky characters that "House on Haunted Hill" had, and so
this Dark Castle remake is less successful, IMO.
Finally, proof that nobody is infallible, I have to say that The King
of Remakes, John Carpenter kind of fell down a bit when he remade
"Village of the Damned". I definitely prefer the original.
To end this piece a on total downer, I point you to a site that has
cataloged the grossest of all the horror remakes out there, and gives a
short list of upcoming remakes in the pipe. This sight is truly
Have fun at the movies, and beware of scary guys with sharp objects.
- Jeremy Lassen
Book Club Info
Gay Men's Book Club will meet on Sunday, January 13th, at 5 pm to
discuss RIVER OF GODS by Ian McDonald. The book for February 10th
is THE ALGEBRAIST by Iain M. Banks. Please contact the group
leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at firstname.lastname@example.org, for more
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, January
20th, at 6 pm to discuss HER SMOKE ROSE UP FOREVER by James Tiptree,
Jr. The book for February 17th is THIRTEEN by Richard
Morgan. Please contact Jude at email@example.com for
Upcoming Event Details
Mark J. Ferrari, THE BOOK OF JOBY, (Tor, Hardcover, $27.95, and Trade
Paperback, $15.95) Saturday, January 12th at 3:00 pm - From Tor's
website: "Lucifer and the Creator have entered, yet again, into a wager
they've made many times before, but this time, the existence of
creation itself is balanced on the outcome. Born in California
during the twilight years of a weary millennium, nine year old Joby
Peterson dreams of blazing like a bonfire against the gathering
darkness of his times, like a knight of the Round Table.
Instead, he is subjected to a life of crippling self-doubt and
relentless mediocrity inflicted by an enemy he did nothing to earn and
cannot begin to comprehend. Though imperiled themselves,
the angels are forbidden to intervene. Left to struggle
with their own loyalties and the question of obedience, they watch
Lucifer work virtually unhindered to turn Joby's heart of gold into ash
and stone while God sits by, seemingly unconcerned. And so when
he is grown to manhood, Joby's once luminous love of life seems
altogether lost, and Lucifer's victory assured. What hope remains
lies hidden in the beauty, warmth, and innocence of a forgotten seaside
village whose odd inhabitants seem to defy the modern world s most
inflexible assumptions, and in the hearts of Joby's long lost youthful
love and her emotionally wounded son. But the ravenous forces of
destruction that follow Joby into this concealed paradise plan to use
these same things to bring him and his world to ruin. As the
final struggle unfolds, one question occupies every mind in heaven and
in hell. Which will prove stronger, love or rage?" Meet the author of
this incredible contemporary fantasy at Borderlands!
JUST ANNOUNCED! Robin Hobb, RENEGADE'S MAGIC, (Eos Books, Hardcover, $25.95,) Saturday, January 19th at 3:00 pm -
Join us to meet fabulous fantasist Robin Hobb and learn the fate of
Navare in RENEGADE'S MAGIC, the stirring conclusion to the Soldier Son
trilogy! We are always happy to host the friendly and talented
Ms. Hobb, and we know you'll enjoy meeting her. I'd love to give
you a synopsis of the new book, but it hasn't been released just yet,
so we'll all have to be surprised together! (It will, however, be
here in time for the event.)
Peter S. Beagle and Mark J. Ferrari are guests of SF in SF at the
Variety Preview Room, 582 Market Street, Saturday, January 19th at 7:00
pm - SF in SF is an ongoing monthly reading and discussion series
sponsered by Tacyhon Publications and moderated by author Terry
Bisson. There is a cash bar and books will be available for sale
from Borderlands. This month, meet Peter S. Beagle, beloved
author of the perennial classic THE LAST UNICORN, and Mark J. Ferrari,
whose first novel THE BOOK OF JOBY is generating rave reviews.
For more information on SF in SF, see <http://www.sfinsf.org/>
Borderlands event policy - all events are free of charge. You are welcome
to bring copies of an author's books purchased elsewhere to be autographed
(but we do appreciate it if you purchase something while at the event).
For most events you are welcome to bring as many books as you wish for autographs.
If you are unable to attend the event we will be happy to have a copy of
any of the author's available books signed or inscribed for you. We
can then either hold it until you can come in to pick it up or we can ship
it to you. Just give us a call or drop us an email. If you live
out of town, you can also ship us books from your collection to be signed.
Call or email for details.
Chapter Two - Book Listings
Small Press Features
Stories of the Apocalypse edited by John Joseph Adams (Night Shade
Books, Trade Paperback, $15.95) - From Night Shade's website:
"Famine, Death, War, and Pestilence: The Four Horsemen of the
Apocalypse, the harbingers of Armageddon—these are our guides through
the Wastelands. From the Book of Revelations to "The Road
Warrior"; from A Canticle for Leibowitz to The Road, storytellers have
long imagined the end of the world, weaving eschatological tales of
catastrophe, chaos, and calamity. In doing so, these visionary
authors have addressed one of the most challenging and enduring themes
of imaginative fiction: the nature of life in the aftermath of total
societal collapse. Gathering together the best post-apocalyptic
literature of the last two decades from many of today’s most renowned
authors of speculative fiction, including George R.R. Martin, Gene
Wolfe, Orson Scott Card, Carol Emshwiller, Jonathan Lethem, Octavia E.
Butler, and Stephen King, Wastelands explores the scientific,
psychological, and philosophical questions of what it means to remain
human in the wake of Armageddon. Whether the end of the world
comes through nuclear war, ecological disaster, or cosmological
cataclysm, these are tales of survivors, in some cases struggling to
rebuild the society that was, in others, merely surviving, scrounging
for food in depopulated ruins and defending themselves against
monsters, mutants, and marauders."
Five Strokes to Midnight by Gary A. Braunbeck, Christopher Golden,
Deborah LeBlanc, Tom Piccirilli, and Hank Schwaeble (Haunted Pelican,
Limited Edition Hardcover, $49.99) - From Haunted Pelican: "Haunted
Pelican Press begins its maiden voyage in bringing fiction of the
highest caliber to fans of the macabre by announcing its first
anthology, FIVE STROKES TO MIDNIGHT. . . .
Starting with FIVE STROKES TO MIDNIGHT, each volume in the series will
showcase four well-known writers of dark fiction, as well as one
newcomer to the field. The first volume features multiple,
all-new works from Bram Stoker Award-winner Christopher Golden, Bram
Stoker Award-winner Gary Braunbeck, Bram Stoker Award-winner Tom
Piccirilli, southern gothic sensation Deborah LeBlanc, and hard-hitting
newcomer Hank Schwaeble. Each writer will be offering
approximately 20,000 words of fiction -- comprising at least two
stories per author inspired by a theme of the author's own choosing.
For this first volume, readers can look forward to multiple tales on
the subject of Folklore (Golden), Hauntings (Braunbeck), Loss
(Piccirilli), Curses (LeBlanc), and Demons (Schwaeble) -- all the fear
readers can handle in one book, and then some. Each writer's
section will feature an original illustration by none other than Ashley
Laurence (Hellraiser, Hellbound: Hellraiser 2, Lightning Bug) who also
provides the full-color, nightmarish cover."
Antediluvian Tales by Poppy Z. Brite (Subterranean Press, Signed and
Numbered Limited Edition (400 copies) Hardcover, $45.00, and Trade
Hardcover, $25.00) - From Subterranean: "The work of almost every New
Orleans writer has been irrevocably split into two periods: pre-Katrina
and post-Katrina. As Poppy Z. Brite writes in the foreword to
this new mini-collection, 'After the events of 2005, I couldn't see
pairing stories I'd written before the flood with those I'd written
after; for better or worse, my life, my outlook, and, necessarily, my
work has changed forever . . . These are literally antediluvian tales,
stories written before August 29, 2005 . . . Whatever else they may be,
the stories in this little collection now seem almost impossibly
innocent to me.' Antediluvian Tales contains five stories of the
Stubbs family, the New Orleans clan whose adventures Brite has
chronicled in her popular Liquor novels and other works. Two more
stories revisit the author's fictitious alter ego Dr. Brite, the
coroner of New Orleans. Completing the book is 'The Last Good Day
of My Life,' a nonfiction look at the changes the past two years have
wrought on Brite, filtered through a reminiscence about a day she spent
knocking around Cairns, Australia."
The Merchant and the Alchemist's Gate by Ted Chaing (Subterranean
Press, Signed and Numbered Limited Edition (200 copies), Hardcover
$45.00) - From Subterranean Press: "In medieval Baghdad, a penniless
man is brought before the most powerful man in the world, the caliph
himself, to tell his story. It begins with a walk in the bazaar,
but soon grows into a tale unlike any other told in the caliph's
empire. It's a story that includes not just buried treasure and a
band of thieves, but also men haunted by their past and others trapped
by their future; it includes not just a beloved wife and a veiled
seductress, but also long journeys taken by caravan and even longer
ones taken with a single step. Above all, it's a story about
recognizing the will of Allah and accepting it, no matter what form it
Frontier Cthulhu: Ancient Horrors in the New World edited by William
Jones (Chaosium, Trade Paperback, $14.95) - We have Sherlock Holmes and
Cthulhu, pirates and Cthulhu, and now . . . from Chaosium: "As
explorers conquered the frontiers of North America, they disturbed
sleeping terrors and things long forgotten by humanity. Journey
into the undiscovered country where fierce Vikings struggle against
monstrous abominations. Travel with European colonists as they
learn of buried secrets and the creatures guarding ancient
knowledge. Go west across the plains, into the territories were
sorcerers dwell in demon-haunted lands, and cowboys confront cosmic
Haunted House and Other Presidential Horrors by Edward Lee (Overlook
Connection Press, Limited Edition (500 copies) Hardcover, $39.95) -
Illustrated by Glenn Chadbourne. From Ed Lee's site: "These
stories feature one connecting theme: they all take place in The White
House! And a HAUNTED HOUSE it is! With ex-presidents, that
is, dead ex-presidents making many appearances in various forms.
Supernatural elements take place that may explain how some of the
"Executive" decisions are made. And what about that White House
lawn? Who, or what, lives there in the twilight hours? All this
and more is offered up in Edward Lee's visions of the ultimate Haunted
House and other Presidential Horrors. Not for the faint of heart
. . . or stomach! This collection of presidential horrors brings
together Edward Lee's political-themed stories for the first
time. Featuring previously unpublished fiction as well as rare
Teatro Grottesco by Thomas Ligotti (Mythos, Hardcover, $35.00) -
Finally, an affordable edition of this book! From Mythos Books:
"Thomas Ligotti is often cited as the most curious and remarkable
figure in horror literature since H.P. Lovecraft. Celebrated for
his exceptionally grotesque imagination and facility as a prose writer,
he is a five-time recipient of the most prestigious awards in horror
literature. This fact is unusual in that Ligotti's work does not
display the traits which have come to be associated with contemporary
horror - sympathetic heroes, settings in the everyday world, and good
versus evil scenarios. Instead, he has followed a literary
tradition that began with Edgar Allan Poe, portraying characters that
are outside of anything that might be called normal life, depicting
strange locales far off the beaten track, and rendering a grim vision
of human existence as a perpetual nightmare. The stories
collected in Teatro Grottesco, for instance, feature tormented
individuals who play out their doom in various odd little towns for
which Ligotti is noted as well as in dark sectors frequented by
sinister and often blackly comical eccentrics. The cycle of
narratives that include the title work of this collection introduces
the readers to a freakish community of artists who encounter demonic
perils that threaten their lives and their sanity. In other
tales, characters live in the shadow of menacing forms and forces that
ultimately envelop them in the most perverse and deranged
destinities. The 'funny town' of 'The Town Manager', the
'medicine shop' of 'The Clown Puppet', and the foggy terrain 'across
the border' of 'Our Case for Retributive Action' and 'Our Temporary
Supervisor' are among the venues that close in on those fated to exist
within their precincts. These are selected examples of the bleak
array of persons and places that compose the fiction of Thomas
Ligotti. As one critic has written, 'Ligotti is wonderful and
original; has a dark vision of a new and special kind, a vision that no
one has had before him.'"
Thrillers 2 edited by Robert Morrish (Cemetery Dance, Signed and
Numbered Limited Edition (750 copies) Hardcover, $40.00) - Stories by
Gemma Files, Tim Waggoner, R. Patrick Gates and Caitlin R.
Kiernan. From Cemetery Dance: "This volume marks the long-overdue
return of a dark fiction series that debuted in 1993. After a
fourteen-year hiatus, Thrillers is revived with a star-studded second
volume. Within these pages, you'll find terror, suspense, and
mystery that range from quietly menacing to shockingly graphic, wildly
fantastic to grimly realistic. It's all here, with one universal
ingredient: a well-told story. The formula for the Thrillers
series is deceptively simple: we invite four of the genre's most
popular authors to each contribute 20,000 words of original,
never-before-been-published fiction. We add insightful Afterwords
by each author, along with striking illustrations by a brilliant
artist. The end result is a wonderful showcase for the finest of
today's short fiction."
Masques of Satan by Reggie Oliver (Ash-Tree Press, Limited Editon (500
copies) Hardcover, $49.00) - From Ash-Tree: "In his first two
collections of supernatural tales, The Dreams of Cardinal Vittorini,
and The Complete Symphonies of Adolf Hitler, playwright, actor, and
theatre director Reggie Oliver demonstrated his mastery of the classic
ghost story. Now, in his eagerly anticipated third collection,
Masques of Satan, Oliver shows why he is being hailed as one of the
best and freshest new voices to emerge in the genre in recent
years. Many of the tales in the collection draw on the author's
theatrical background, and in such stories as 'Mmm-Delicious',
'Puss-Cat', 'Blind Man's Box', 'Grab a Granny Night', 'Mr Poo-Poo',
'The Road from Damascus', and the stunning novella 'Shades of the
Prison House' he takes us backstage into a world of easy friendship and
a surface glamour which conceals something much more dark and
desperate. Oliver's talent for pastiche shines in 'The Silver
Cord', which won the Arthur Machen Short Story Competition, while 'The
Children of Monte Rosa' turns a friendly invitation to a holiday villa
into something deeply disturbing. All of these tales, as well as
the four others collected in this volume, makes Masques of Satan
Oliver's richest and most satisfying book to date, one that deserves to
be on the shelf of every reader who appreciates fine writing and is
searching for chills as literate as they are frightening.
Illustrations by Reggie Oliver accompany each story."
Strange Tales Vol. 2 edited by Rosalie Parker (Tartarus Press,
Hardcover, $61.99) - From Tartarus Press: "A 'Strange Tale' is a short
story that explores a fantastic idea, supernatural or psychological,
with the intention of causing, through its own logical development,
uncertainty or unease about that which the reader takes for
granted. The outward appearance of the story can vary infinitely
from the traditional to the experimental, from the serious to the
comic, but in each case the assumptions of the reader are undermined to
a degree that they find uncomfortable. The Strange Tale is a form
that moves effortlessly between the various genres (as all good fiction
should). In this new volume, the Strange Tales on offer range
from the dark realism of 'What Water Reveals' by Adam Golaski through
to the surreal 'The Concise Picaresque Adventures of the Wanderlust
Bridge' by Rhys Hughes. From the subtlety of 'The Fairy Killer'
by Quentin S. Crisp to the horror of 'Sejanus' Daughter' by Hilbourne
Carlone (Don Tumasonis). From the urban horror of 'Calico Black,
Calico Blue' by Joel Knight, to the rural strangeness of 'Pastor
Arrhenius and The Maiden Brita' by Dale Nelson. From the
traditionally told 'Llanfihangel' by Elizabeth Brown to the range of
contemporary documentation offered in 'The Magpies' by David Rix.
Within this collection of seventeen new stories you are sure to
discover some that will cause you to wonder what worlds might exist
beyond the apparently everyday."
New and Notable
Ruby Dice by Catherine Asaro (Baen, Hardcover, $23.00) - From the dust
jacket: "Two men, two empires. Jaibriol ruled the Eubian Concord:
over two trillion people across more than a thousand worlds and
habitats. Kelric ruled the Skolian Imperialate. War had
come before—ten years ago, Jaibriol had lost his parents in the final
battle of the Radiance War between the Concord and the Imperialate—and
it might come again, devastating vast swathes of the galaxy.
Neither Jaibriol nor Kelric wanted war, but neither was complete master
of his realm. And each hid a secret that, if revealed, might be
his downfall. Jaibriol was a secret psion, with telepathic abilities,
and to be a psion in the Eubian Concord was to be a contemptible slave,
eventually to be tortured for the pleasure of the slave's owner.
Kelric, years ago, had disappeared for nearly two decades. He had
been a prisoner and slave on the planet Coban, part of neither empire,
until he had managed to escape. And if the Skolian Imperialate
knew of his captivity, there would be demands for vengeance, ravaging
Coban -- and killing the wife and children Kelric had left behind when
he escaped. Neither man knew how much longer he could keep his
secret -- nor how much longer they could hold back the threat of a war
that could incinerate hundreds of inhabited worlds."
Dust by Elizabeth Bear (Bantam, Mass Market, $6.99) - From the book:
"On a broken ship orbiting a doomed sun, dwellers have grown complacent
with their aging metal world. But when a serving girl frees a
captive noblewoman, the old order is about to change . . . .
Ariane, Princess of the House of Rule, was known to be fiercely
cold-blooded. But severing an angel’s wings on the battlefield -- even
after she had surrendered -- proved her completely without honor.
Captive, the angel Perceval waits for Ariane not only to finish her
off, but to devour her very memories and mind. Surely her
gruesome death will cause war between the houses -- exactly as Ariane
desires. But Ariane’s plan may yet be opposed, for Perceval at
once recognizes the young servant charged with her care. Rien is
the lost child: her sister. Soon they will escape, hoping to stop
the impending war and save both their houses. But it is a
perilous journey through the crumbling hulk of a dying ship, and they
do not pass unnoticed. Because at the hub of their turning world
waits Jacob Dust, all that remains of God, following the vapor wisp of
the angel. And he knows they will meet very soon."
Breath and Bone by Carol Berg (Roc, Trade Paperback, $15.00) - From the
book: "As the land of Navronne sinks deeper into civil war and perilous
winter, everyone wants to get their hands on the rebellious sorcerer
Valen-a murderous priestess, a prince who steals dead men's eyes, and
even the Danae guardians, whose magic nurtures the earth and whose
attention could prove the most costly of all. Addicted to an
enchantment that turns pain into pleasure -- and bound by oaths he
refuses to abandon -- Valen risks body and soul to rescue one child,
seek justice for another, and bring the dying land its rightful
king. Yet no one is who they seem, and Valen's search for healing
grace leads him from Harrower dungeons to alien shores. Only at
the heart of the world does he discover the glorious, terrible price of
the land's redemption-and his own."
Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs (Ace, Mass Market, $7.99) - From the
book: "When her former boss and mentor is arrested for murder and left
to rot behind bars by his own kind, it's up to shapeshifting car
mechanic Mercy Thompson to clear his name, whether he wants her to or
not. And she'll have to choose between the two werewolves in her
life -- whether she wants to or not." This latest installment in
the series is selling like hotcakes, so get yours now!
Firstborn by Arthur C. Clarke and Stephen Baxter (Del Rey, Hardcover, $25.95) - The conclusion of A Tme Odyssey.
Thunderer by Felix Gilman (Bantam Spectra, Hardcover, $24.00) - The
Fantasy Book Critic Blog says ". . . Felix Gilman’s first novel
deserves to be included in the debate for Best Fantasy Debut of the
Year, whether it’s for 2007 or 2008. . . ." Check out the full review
Unnatural Inquirer by Simon R. Green (Ace, Hardcover, $21.95) - A new
Nightside novel! From Penguin's site: "John Taylor is a P.I. with
the special ability to locate anyone or anything. The Unnatural
Inquirer, the Nightside's most notorious gossip rag, has offered him a
million pounds to find a DVD purported to contain an actual recording
of the afterlife. John doesn't know if it's true, but someone --
or something -- thinks so, and will stop at nothing to possess the
The History of the Hobbit Boxed Set by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by John
D. Rateliff (Houghton Mifflin, Slipcased set of three Hardcovers,
$95.00) - “A beautiful boxed set: the definitive examination of how
Tolkien came to write his original masterpiece, including the complete
unpublished draft and little-known illustrations and unpublished maps,
along with a new edition of the classic work itself. First
published in 1937, The Hobbit is a story that "grew in the telling,"
and many characters and events in the published book are completely
different from what Tolkien first wrote to read aloud to his young sons
as part of their "fireside reads." For the first time, The History of
the Hobbit reproduces the original version of one of literature's most
famous stories, and includes many little-known illustrations and
previously unpublished maps for The Hobbit created by Tolkien himself.
Also featured are extensive annotations and commentaries on the date of
composition, how Tolkien's professional and early mythological writings
influenced the story, the imaginary geography he created, and how he
came to revise the book in the years after publication to accommodate
events in The Lord of the Rings. These two volumes are boxed
together with a new edition of The Hobbit with a short introduction by
Christopher Tolkien, a reset text incorporating the most up-to-date
corrections, and all of Tolkien's own drawings and color illustrations,
including the rare "Mirkwood" piece."
Paint it Black: A Guide to Gothic Homemaking by Voltaire (Weiser,
Undersized Hardcover, $15.95) - The budding goth in your life will love
this "Martha Stewart for Goths" decor book -- plus an extensive section
on Goth weddings! Recommended by Jude.
DVD New Arrivals
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Dispatches from the Border
Editor - Jude Feldman
Assistant Editor - Alan Beatts
Contributors - Jeremy Lassen
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