Site contents copyright
Borderlands Books unless noted otherwise.
All right reserved.
ABOUT THE STORE : NEWSLETTER
DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News from Borderlands Books
Chapter One - Event Information, News, and Special FeaturesAlma Alexander, SPELLSPAM, (Harper, Hardcover, $17.99), Saturday, November 15th at 3:00 pm
Ellen Klages and Geoff Ryman are guests of SF in SF at the Variety
Preview Room in the Hobart Building, 582 Market Street, Saturday,
November 15th at 7:00 pm
Borderlands Books 11th Anniversary Sale, Sunday, November 16th from 12:00 - 8:00 pm (changed from November 9th)
(for more information check the end of this section)
Stay tuned for Fall events with Steven Erikson, Kim Stanley Robinson, S.M. Stirling, and many other exciting authors!
Overheard at the Con
This is a feature that appears periodically, as we attend
conventions and overhear things. The tradition of keeping track
of anonymous overheard bits and bobs started for us at the 2002 ConJose
in San Jose, where trying (or trying not to) fill in the blanks on
overheard conversations made us laugh so much that we made it a
tradition. In this issue we share the newest "overheards" from
the World Fantasy Convention in Calgary. Thanks to Alan Beatts
and Rina Weisman for their help in collecting quotes.
"Facebook is, like, mostly for 15-year-olds who can't talk to each other but really want to mate."
"The fake fur covers on the manuscript were a dead giveaway."
"'Crazy' is the new black."
"No, really, you're very entertaining when you're drunk."
"My theme for the con was 'Get Therapy!'"
"I saw the Moody Blues recently. All of those chubby
sixty-something year-old hippies smoking pot were kind of depressing."
"Yeah, and then there was the audience!"
"But freeloading is a lot of fun."
"I had to drive 30 miles to find a coffee shop to write in! Every
Starbucks between the Pacific Ocean and the [Interstate] 5 Freeway is
packed full of screenwriters."
"THE LOVELY BONES is the feel-good rape/murder novel of the year."
*Thanks to customer Christopher Hsiang for the following review of
AGENT TO THE STARS by John Scalzi (Tor, Trade Paperback, $14.95).
We're looking forward to even more reviews from Chris.*
At last, after all the waiting, it happens: the faint signals from an
alien civilization have been detected. The whole planet is thrilled and
inspired by the revelation: "We Are Not Alone!" The entire globe's
science and technology are kicked into high-gear, launching an
expedition to the new-found neighbors. They convert an asteroid
into a generation ark, fill it with the best and the brightest, and
cast them off for the long voyage across the void. After many lonely
decades the ship finally reaches that Little Blue Marble, stealthily
inserts itself in orbit, and hunkers down to learn from the various
entertainment and news broadcasts from the planet Earth.
A bunch of blobs loafing about watching teevee-- sounds a lot like us,
right? No, not really, they are literally blobs. These
explorers, the Yherajk, are translucent, gelatinous masses of
undifferentiated cells who communicate amongst themselves by aerially
transmitted long chain organic molecules. In the words of Joshua,
the main representative of the Yherajk:"We look like snot, and we smell
like dead fish. . . We have seen The Blob, and it is us." After
studying our media concerning aliens they realize that if they were to
land at the White House, humanity's first reaction would be to find a
cigar-chomping action-hero to punch them in the face (or similar
surface area). This is a major image problem. They need help. They go
to the true leaders of human culture, Hollywood, and look for an agent
to represent them.
AGENT TO THE STARS was John Scalzi's first novel, written way back in
1997. He distributed it online with some success, then got it published
as a hardcover through Subterranean Press with a mere 1,500 copies
printed. [Editor's note: BIZ AGENT TO THE STARS was Scalzi's second
published novel. He made it available online for free in
1999. It was released in print form by Sub Press in 2005.] Since
then he has written several non-fiction books for the Rough Guide
series, maintained "one of the oldest and widely read blogs on the
Internet" called Whatever, committed some questionable acts with bacon,
and written five very well-received science fiction novels. In the OLD
MAN'S WAR series he turned an homage to Heinlein's STARSHIP
TROOPERS on its ear by suggesting that maybe a Human Imperialist
war against the rest of the galaxy's species would be a less than good
idea. In THE ANDROID'S DREAM there is near-perfect balance between
uproarious slapstick silliness and heartfelt deep thought. His next
book,THE HIGH CASTLE, is set in the same universe as THE ANDROID'S
DREAM and due out in the Fall of '09, so we can expect more adventurous
space-comic opera to come. Scalzi is a hot, new(ish), popular writer
and deservedly so. He may in time garner the adoration and reverence SF
fans bestow upon that master of absurd truth, Douglas Adams. Yeah, I
said it; he is Hitchhiker's good and may get better. Now you have
a chance to check out his remarkably good first novel.
Once you get past any preconceptions, the weird Yherajk are quite
charming and likable, as is the tale's protagonist Tom Stein who
belongs to one of Earth's most reviled professions: the Hollywood
Agent. Tom is a hot new talent in the Game and will do anything;
hustle, wheedle, prevaricate, and just outright lie to get the best
deal for his clients. That roster of talent includes all the
oft-parodied show-biz types: the Airhead Actor and Actress, the
Overbearing Stage Mother, and the Diva Bitch From Hell. All of them,
along with the Sleazy Tabloid Reporter, are deftly elevated from
two-dimensional caricatures into believable and (mostly) sympathetic
characters with an economy of language that takes the breath away from
this long-winded reviewer. At first Tom's wacky exploits in La-La Land
seem to take precedence to his mission of cosmic importance for his
newest client. Is humanity's First Contact taking a backseat to Tom's
10%? Just sit back and enjoy the sunny ride beneath rat-infested palm
trees though a very sharp satire of the Industry. Rest assured all the
apparent loose ends in this complex madcap plot are tied up by the
exciting conclusion. But this is more than light-hearted parody and
side-splitting gags. Scalzi weaves biting social commentary and weighty
ethical conundrums with sobering meditations on grief and loss from the
small and personal to a planet-wide and historical scale. Witty,
perceptive and never dull, AGENT TO THE STARS is a fast read but
ultimately satisfying on many levels.
Along with the humor and sensitivity I noticed other emergent hallmarks
of Scalzian prose. You may recognize scenes of Important Ceremonies
going awry; strange beings who communicate by smell or who can share
consciousness; ordinary humans (more or less) chosen as Symbols of
Great Cultural Significance who still deal with the mundane aspects of
life, "Hey, Mr. big-shot Messiah, now it's time to mow the lawn!"; oh,
and fart jokes, lots of them. This isn't a complaint, mind you. All the
greatest Grand Masters of the field have used their own themes and
motifs repeatedly with great effect. Just sayin': Scalzi, I'm watching
you -- and I like what I see. He also, in his acknowledgments, always
thanks not just the usual suspects but also the cover illustrator,
design team, and copy editor. Now that is just pure class.
My only real criticism is so nerdishly geeky I should never ever speak
of it at all. Okay, it goes like this: if the Yherajk native language
uses only scent, why do they have names and vocabulary so difficult for
us to pronounce vocally? Wouldn't they call themselves "the People" or
"the Fluid Ones"? Are they just screwing with us? But I digress.
If ever filmed, AGENT TO THE STARS will play more like a classic
screwball comedy than "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" or
"Independence Day" and I am thankful for the difference. The aliens
bring neither the threat of enslavement nor a message of galactic
peace; they just want to get to know us and maybe hang out over some
pizza. There have been some complaints recently that science fiction
has been overrun with dystopian futures and overall pessimism. Looking
around the world today I can see where this influence might be coming
from. I don't know if utopia is even possible, but humor is important
to humanity. We will all need a good giggle as we queue up for Soylent
Mauve in our matching paper jumpsuits. In all his of his work, John
Scalzi cannot keep from being wickedly funny. It's just his nature.
Scalzi's worlds may not be perfect but in them a handful of sarcastic
smart-asses with their hearts in the right place can always save the
day, at least until the next screw-up. If that isn't optimism, I don't
know what is.
- Christopher Hsiang
The Borderlands Cafe blog is live! Revel in some truly terrifying
photos of the space as it used to be, and watch our progress! <http://www.borderlands-cafe.com>
*Scathingly Funny Fantasy Books Retitled with PhotoShop:
(Warning, do not try to drink anything while examining this link.)
*World Fantasy Award Winners
Winners of the World Fantasy Awards were announced in Calgary last
weekend. The award for Best Novel went to YSABEL by Guy Gavriel
Kay. We offer congratulations to all the winners. Complete
list of nominees and winners here: <http://www.worldfantasy.org/awards/>
*Book Cover Poster Giveaway
Come and getcher posters! We have a bunch of book cover posters
to give away to local customers. (Sorry, I really can't ship
them.) Here's the deal: one to a customer, first email to reserve
the poster gets it, and ya gotta pick 'em up by November 22nd.
It's fine to state a second preference, too. We've got: Barth Anderson
THE MAGICIAN AND THE FOOL; Kelley Armstrong THE SUMMONING; Kage Baker
THE HOUSE OF THE STAG; Greg Bear THE CITY AT THE END OF TIME; Steven
Erikson TOLL THE HOUNDS; David Farland THE WYRMLING HORDE; Peter F.
Hamilton THE DREAMING VOID; Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson PAUL OF
DUNE; Jay Lake ESCAPEMENT; Brandon Sanderson THE HERO OF
AGES; S.M. Stirling, THE SCOURGE OF GOD; Harry Turtledove THE MAN WITH
THE IRON HEART; and David Weber BY SCHISM RENT ASUNDER.
*THE FOREVER WAR movie
Fox 2000 has acquired rights to the 1974 novel THE FOREVER WAR by Joe
Haldeman, and "Ridley Scott is planning to make it into his first
science fiction film since he delivered back-to-back classics with Blade
Runner and Alien," Variety reported. "Scott intended to follow those
films with THE FOREVER WAR, but rights complications delayed his plans
for more than two decades. 'I first pursued FOREVER WAR 25 years ago,
and the book has only grown more timely and relevant since,' said
Scott. 'It's a science-fiction epic, a bit of THE ODYSSEY by way of
BLADE RUNNER, built upon a brilliant, disorienting premise.'"
Read the complete announcement here: <http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117993856.html?categoryid=13&cs=1&query=forever+war>
*Interview with Del Howison, owner of Dark Delicacies
Blogcritics Magazine has done an interview with Del Howison that's very illuminating. Enjoy it here: <http://blogcritics.org/archives/2008/10/19/040354.php>
*Examiner Book-and-Alcohol Pairings
An amusing article to assist you in choosing the right alcoholic
beverage to accompany your book. Includes several genre options!
*Interview with Neal Stephenson
In the following lengthy interview with Neal Stephenson, the
best-selling author recalls an anecdote that occurred at Borderlands:
*We are sorry to report the death of best-selling author Michael Crichton. Link to the New York Times obituary here:
I. Am. So. Tired.
But, the work is going along really well. In the past month, I've completed --
1) All the framing work (with major help from my brother Joe).
2) Prep for the tile installation (and _that_ was
miserable. Working a circular saw on its side to trim down floor
joists (big wood things) while blasting a fine spray of charcoal dust
into my nostrils. The side effects are better not imagined and
I'm sure not going to discuss them. It was ugly).
3) The rough electrical (where I was working alongside electrician par excellance Tom Doyle of Doyle Electric.
4) And more cleaning, sorting, shopping, and so on that I like to
think about . . . plus a little bit of cement work for flavor.
The highly-trained, crack team of commando plumbers, headed by Arjan
Bock of ABP, deployed at the same time that the framing and electrical
were going on (not a common occurrence, since plumbers and electricians
are natural enemies -- I mean, think about it, electricians play around
with high voltage and plumbers sometimes shoot jets of (highly
conductive) water across the room -- bad combination, that).
The long and the short of it is this - I'm the proud possessor of two
passed inspections (plumbing and electrical) and the framing inspection
is next week. Once I pass that and get one or two pesky things
out of the way, it's time to call the drywall guys so they can cover up
all my (and other's) hard work. While they're at it, I'll be
sitting in a lawn chair and sipping a cocktail . . . Not.
I still need to repair the floor (which will be even nicer than the one
in the bookstore but is going to take a lot of work to get there) and
there are also all those pesky details like finding vendors for our
supplies and applying for a license from the city to operate.
If you want to see pictures, go to http://www.borderlands-cafe.com and check out the blog.
- Alan "I'm not a contractor, I just found this hammer" Beatts
From The Office
A few months ago I was chatting with some friends about those series
where one should just stop part-way through. It's not surprising
that this happens to some sequences of novels. Most fiction work
is subject to "Jumping the Shark," whether it be novel series,
television programs, or movie franchises. (As an aside, that term
was coined about the old TV show, "Happy Days," about which there is
almost universal agreement that the point when the show became
unwatchable was when one of the major characters actually jumped a
shark . . . while on water skies . . . wearing, fer' gods' sake, a
leather jacket and shorts).
What surprised me was the almost universal agreement among those
present (which included two editors, two publishers, three booksellers,
and several readers). For your amusement let me present some of
The Dune series by Frank Herbert - Stop at the first book, Dune.
If you really loved it, you may read the second, Dune Messiah.
But stop there.
The Amber books by Roger Zelazny - The first set, one through five
(Nine Princes in Amber to The Courts of Chaos), are excellent.
Don't even bother reading the second five (The Trumps of Doom to The
Prince of Chaos).
The Ender books by Orson Scott Card - Read the first one, Ender's
Game. Then, please, please, please do stop. Skip wwaaayyy
ahead and read Ender's Shadow. Then stop for good. And
while you're at it, you might want to skip the rest of his work
The Anita Blake series by Laurel Hamilton - They continue to deliver
all the way up to Obsidian Butterfly, which is volume 9. After
that, stop (unless, of course, you like porn, porn, porn, with a side
of porn. But in that case, my I suggest Penthouse's Forum
magazine? It's much cheaper and comes out every month.)
The Thomas Covenant trilogy of trilogies by Steven Donaldson.
Read the first three (Lord Foul's Bane, The Illearth War, and The Power
That Preserves) then stop. Not only are the later books inferior
but they spoil your appreciation of the central character because they
remove his only admirable trait.
The Xanth novels by Piers Anthony - Read the first three. They're
really quite clever and funny. But then the jokes run out, the
puns become onerous, and they just aren't _good_ anymore. But,
wow, have they gone on . . . and on . . . and on (Anthony is up to
number 29 now . . . and people still buy them . . . wonders will
In closing let me note two things. First, the series on this list
are notable because they start out really quite well (hell, Dune is one
of the great classics of our field) and _then_ decline. If I were
listing series that started bad and got worse this article would go on
forever. Second, I'm being a bit mean for the sake of
humor. If you as a reader liked, oh, let's say, Xanth #25 -- good
for you. Believe me, I read some complete crap for fun and I love
it. Our genre is all about entertainment and, if you're being
entertained by a book instead of the idiot-box, you're _way_ ahead of
the majority of the population.
- Alan Beatts
Top Sellers At Borderlands
1. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
2. The Steel Remains by Richard K. Morgan (UK)
3. The Hero of Ages by Brandon Sanderson
4. Nation by Terry Pratchett
5. Anathem by Neal Stehenson
6. Temporal Void by Peter F. Hamilton (UK)
7. Return of the Crimson Guard by Ian Cameron Esslemont (UK)
8. White Sands, Red Menace by Ellen Klages
9. Leather Maiden by Joe R. Lansdale
10. A Lion Among Men by Gregory Maguire tie with
Half a Crown by Jo Walton
1. Halting State by Charles Stross
2. Making Money by Terry Pratchett
3. The City, Not Long After by Pat Murphy
4. The Last Colony by John Scalzi
5. Extraordinary Engines edited by Nick Gevers
6. Dragonhaven by Robin McKinley
7. The Merchants' War by Charles Stross
8. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
9. Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
10. Necropath by Eric Brown
1. Steampunk edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer
2. Shadow of the Scorpion by Neal Asher
3. The Living Dead edited by John Joseph Adams
4. Toll the Hounds by Steven Erikson
5. The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages
Notes From a DVD Geek
It’s not quite the Christmas season
yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start looking for gifts, or for
things to put on your list. Here’s some stuff that might appeal
to a genre movie buff.
First up is the giant pink Jedi in the living room: Love ‘em or
hate em, the "Star Wars" prequel trilogy has been out on DVD for some
time, and if you’ve just been avoiding them altogether, now is your
chance to get all three movies in one. This special edition
package contains all the bonus material from the previous releases, and
has a documentary that hasn’t been previously released. If you
are going to own it, this may be the way to go.
Following on the heels of this is the computer animated "Star Wars:
Clone Wars" movie, which covers the events between the 2nd and 3rd
prequel movies. This one looks pretty, and features the ultimate
badass, Christopher Lee as the voice of Count Dooku. It’s pretty
much worth watching, if only in order to hear Lee chew up the
audio and CGI scenery.
Speaking of wonderfully flawed eye candy, "Hellboy 2: The Golden Army,"
directed by Guillermo del Toro, is making its way to DVD. This
one has all the gruff Ron Perlman action you can shake a stick at, a
Danny Elfman score and of course, a Moody Albino Elf-prince.
Worth seeing at least once or twice.
One movie hitting DVD in November you should not miss is the new movie
from Minami Kawasaki ("The Calamari Wrestler" and "Kani
Goalkeeper"). It is called "Executive Koala". Imagine the
visual stylings of "Kung Fu Hustle," directed by David Lynch, telling
the story of an anthroporphic koala/salary man in the seedy jungles of
Japanese office life. Okay? You got that in your head? Now
make it ten times more weird. Don’t miss this one.
Another absolutely weird film from Japan is Takashi Mike’s "Happiness
of the Katakuris". This movie features a hotel where the guests
keep dying before they can check out, claymation, and several musical
numbers. Very different from his horror material, but equally
strange. Think "Wallace and Grommit" meet "Motel Hell". . .
except Mike makes it weird. . .
The really important movie from Japan hitting DVD this month is "The
Girl Who Leapt Through Time," directed by Mamoru Hosoda. It is an
animated adventure/drama about a girl who discovers she has the power
to go back in time. Miyazaki fans should not miss this one, as it
is right up your alley, and as powerful as anything the old master
produced. And I don’t say that lightly. I know I’m setting the
bar pretty high, but this movie is pretty damn special.
And, from the vaults of Classic American Television, I give you "The
Night Gallery," finally available on DVD. Season One is already
out, and Season Two comes out this month. Season Two has a
special place in my heart because the 19th episode is the adaptation of
Manley Wade Wellman’s “The Devil is Not Mocked” which features Nazis
and Dracula. Nuff said.
Till next month . . . .
- Jeremy Lassen
Book Club Info
The Gay Men's Book Club
will meet on Sunday, November 9th, at 5 pm to discuss OTHERLAND: CITY
OF GOLDEN SHADOW by Tad Williams. 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, November
16th, at 6 pm to discuss SLAUGHTERHOUSE-FIVE by Kurt Vonnegut,
Jr. The book for January is OLD MAN'S WAR by John Scalzi.
Please contact Jude at email@example.com for more
Upcoming Event Details
Alma Alexander, SPELLSPAM, (Harper, Hardcover, $17.99), Saturday, November 15th at 3:00 pm -
From the author's site: "What do you get when ordinary e-mail spam
becomes infused with magic? Spellspam—and it’s not supposed to exist.
As far as Thea Winthrop and her friends know, computers are completely
magically inert, making them ideal vehicles for storing magic spells,
not casting them. But all that seems to have changed as students at
Wandless Academy find themselves the victim of practical jokes—with
magical consequences—simply by opening an e-mail.
Now the spellspams are getting worse, and it’s possible there’s someone
behind them who is not just bent on stirring up trouble but has a much
scarier and more far-reaching agenda. Until now, Thea herself has been
the only person she’s even heard of who can reach through the computer
using magic. But Thea's match is out there, and even her friends can’t
help her track down the source of the spellspam before it gets much,
This sequel to GIFT OF THE UNMAGE ups the ante on a fantasy world that
is rich and nuanced, like our own, but with a core of wildly original
magic." Meet the popular author of THE SECRETS OF JEN-SHEI at
Ellen Klages and Geoff Ryman are guests of SF in SF at
the Variety Preview Room in the Hobart Building, 582 Market Street,
Saturday, November 15th at 7:00 pm - We are very excited to
help SF in SF welcome these distinguished guests, one from right in the
neighborhood, and one from over the ocean! Each author will read
a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience
moderated by author Terry Bisson. Authors will schmooze &
sign books after in the lounge. Books available for sale courtesy of
Borderlands Books. Seating is limited, so first come, first
seated. Bar proceeds benefit Variety Childrens Charity - learn
more at <http://www.varietync.org/>.
We REALLY encourage you to take BART into the City, or use MUNI to get
here - parking can be problematic in San Francisco, to say the
least. We are less than one block away from the Montgomery St.
station. Trust us - you don't want to be looking for parking and
be late for the event! Phone (night of event) 415-572-1015.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Borderlands Books 11th Anniversary Sale, Sunday, November 16th from 12:00 - 8:00 pm (changed from November 9th) -
Celebrate 11 years of Borderlands with us! We only have two sales
a year, and this is the big one: buy any two used books and get a third
one of equal or lesser value for free. Collectable books are not
included in this deal, but they will be 10% off all day long, and
finally, everything else in the store will be 20% off (artwork,
employees, and cats excluded, sorry)! The sale will only run for
one day, and this sale only happens once a year, so mark your calendars
for Sunday, November 16th. THANK YOU all for your support.
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
SHADOW OF THE SCORPION by Neal Asher (Night Shade Books, Trade
Paperback, $14.95) - From Night Shade: "Ian Cormac's early years!
Raised to adulthood during the end of the war between the human Polity
and a vicious alien race, the Prador, Ian Cormac is haunted by
childhood memories of a sinister scorpion-shaped war drone and the
burden of losses he doesn't remember.
Cormac signs up with Earth Central Security and is sent out to help
restore and maintain order on worlds devastated by the war. There he
discovers that though the Prador remain as murderous as ever, they are
not anywhere near as treacherous or dangerous as some of his fellow
humans, some closer to him than he would like.
Amidst the ruins left by wartime genocides, Cormac will discover in
himself a cold capacity for violence and learn some horrible truths
about his own past while trying to stay alive on his course of
vengeance." Recommended by Alan.
BACKUP by Jim Butcher (Subterranean Press, Hardcover, $20.00) - From
Subterranean Press: "'Let's get something clear right up front.
I'm not Harry Dresden. Harry's a wizard. A genuine,
honest-to-goodness wizard. He's Gandalf on crack and an IV of Red Bull,
with a big leather coat and a .44 revolver in his pocket. He'll spit in
the eye of gods and demons alike if he thinks it needs to be done, and
to hell with the consequences--and yet somehow my little brother
manages to remain a decent human being. I'll be damned if I know
how. But then, I'll be damned regardless. My name is Thomas
Raith, and I'm a monster.'
So begins 'Backup' a twelve thousand word novelette set in Jim
Butcher's ultra-popular Dresden Files series. This time Harry's in
trouble he knows nothing about, and it's up to his big brother Thomas
to track him down and solve those little life-threatening difficulties
without his little brother even noticing."
THE WALL OF AMERICA by Thomas Disch (Tachyon Publications, Trade
Paperback, $14.95) - From Tachyon: "Following the breakout novel, THE
WORD OF GOD, these surreal, satiric stories pay a mesmerizing visit to
the shadowy zone that lies between everyday life as we now know it and
a perilous near future that is frighteningly tangible. In "The Wall of
America," the Department of Homeland Security has put up a border wall
between the U.S. and Canada. But the NEA has plans for the wall as
well, turning it into the world’s largest art gallery. After the
Rapture, working-class life for "A Family of the Post-Apocalypse" is
not as different as one might imagine, despite the occasional plague of
biker-gang locusts. Between addiction and art is "Ringtime," where a
criminal is trapped in a recursive compulsion to visit other people’s
memories while he is forced to record his own for an eager audience. A
Somali schoolgirl living in post-WWIII Minneapolis goes on a bloody
crusade to rid her town of a familiar predator, one who might just be a
monster, in "White Man." Vivid, starkly imagined, and strikingly
articulate, this disquieting collection is a journey that skillfully
straddles the line between playful absurdity and pointed irony."
THE SNOW IMAGE AND OTHER STORIES OF THE SUPERNATURAL by Nathaniel
Hawthorne (Tartarus Press, Limited Edition (300 copies) Hardcover,
$65.00) - From Tartarus Press: "This volume presents the best of
Nathaniel Hawthorne's short supernatural fiction in thirty-three
stories from 'The Hollow of the Three Hills' (1830) to 'The Ghost of
Doctor Harris' (1856). One of the giants of nineteenth-century American
literature -- author of the classic novel THE SCARLET LETTER --
Hawthorne was brought up in Puritan New England. His strictly
supervised childhood and vivid imagination created his lifelong
fixation with the 'unpardonable sin', the darkness of the human mind
and the uncertain shadowlands of the soul."
FAST SHIPS, BLACK SAILS edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer (Night Shade
Books, Trade Paperback, $14.95) - From Night Shade: "Swashbuckling from
the past into the future and space itself, FAST SHIPS, BLACK SAILS . .
. presents an incredibly entertaining volume of original stories
guaranteed to make you walk and talk like a pirate. Come along
for the voyage with bestselling authors Naomi Novik, Garth Nix, Carrie
Vaughn, Dave Freer, Michael Moorcock, and Eric Flint, as well as such
other stellar talents as Kage Baker, Sarah Monette, Elizabeth Bear,
Steve Aylett, and Conrad Williams--all offering up a veritable treasure
chest of piratical adventure, the likes of which has never been seen in
the four corners of the Earth. Highlights include a brand-new Garth Nix
Sir Hereward & Mr. Fitz novella, as the two clever ne'er-do-wells
storm the sea-gates of the scholar-pirates of Sarkoe. If ever you
had a yearning for adventure on the high seas, now's the time to
indulge it, with FAST SHIPS, BLACK SAILS. You'll return with a sword
shoved through your sash, booty in a safe harbor, and beer on your
breath. We promise." Recommended by Jude.
New and Notable
SWALLOWING DARKNESS - MERRY GENTRY VOL. 7 by Laurell K. Hamilton (Ballantine, Hardcover, $26.00)
THE TEMPORAL VOID - VOID TRILOGY VOL. 2 by Peter F. Hamilton (Pan
Macmillan, Hardcover, $34.10) - We have just a few signed copies of the
British first edition. Reserve yours quickly, because they're
PRETTY MONSTERS by Kelly Link, illustrated by Shaun Tan (Viking,
Hardcover, $19.99) - Kelly Link's site tells us that PRETTY MONSTERS
contains: "Nine short Stories, and a phone booth in Las Vegas; Aliens;
Unhelpful wizards; Possibly carnivorous sofas; A handbag with a village
inside it; Tennessee Fainting Goats; Dueling librarians; A statue of
George Washington, A boy named Onion; Pirates; An undead babysitter; A
nationally-ranked soccer player; Shapeshifters; An unexpected
campfire guest -- And drawings by SHAUN TAN". Really, how can you
resist? Recommended by Jude.
A LION AMONG MEN by Gregory Maguire (William Morrow, Hardcover, $26.95)
- The third in Maguire's re-imagined OZ series tells the story of the
dreadfully misunderstood Cowardly Lion, both before and after his
adventures with Dorothy.
THE QUIET WAR by Paul McAuley (Gollancz, Trade Paperback, $23.72)
- THE QUIET WAR finds Paul McAuley returning to his roots with
the first volume of a new space opera!
This newsletter is distributed monthly free
of charge and may be distributed without charge so long all the following
information is included.
Dispatches from the Border
Editor - Jude Feldman
Assistant Editor - Alan Beatts
Contributors - Jeremy Lassen
All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of
866 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
Comments and suggestions should be directed to email@example.com
BACK ISSUES OF NEWSLETTER