Elena Mendoza is called “Mary” at school, because she was the product of a virgin birth and her classmates are cruel idiots. Other than that factoid, her life is fairly routine: a shitty first boyfriend, an unrequited crush on her beautiful classmate Freddie, a deadbeat stepdad and overworked mom, and now a typical teen job at the local Starbucks. Oh wait, except that Elena has also been hearing voices most of her life – voices from random otherwise inanimate logos, toys, and statues. And today, when a classmate enters the cafe and shoots her crush, the voices tell her to […]
Warning: Spoilers for Feed, the first book in the Newsflesh series are below. Click away now if you haven’t read it. The aftermath of the events of Feed have really done a number on Shaun Mason. Shooting your beloved sister as she turns into a zombie will do that to you. It’ll also have her setting up shop in your head for you to talk aloud to, lending credence to the popular theory that you’ve well and truly lost your marbles. But what Shaun hasn’t lost is the need to avenge Georgia’s death, and while her killer has already taken […]
Endings are always difficult. Wrapping up a series based on someone else’s original work, doubly so (a fact all Game of Thrones fans learned the hard way this year). This book concludes Lovegrove’s trilogy of placing Holmes into a Lovecraftian universe and the results are not that great. The fist difficulty is with the source material. Doyle only returned to Holmes reluctantly, and the stories of Holmes towards the end did not have the same energy or enthusiasm as the earlier works. Yes, Lovegrove incorporates some of the elements from the later Holmes stories, such as beekeeping, but it feels […]
Middle portions of the trilogy are always difficult. There is not the excitement of starting a story nor the anticipation of a conclusion. So how do you make the middle volume interesting? In the case of this book the author changed things up a bit and focused much more on the Lovecraftian Elements then in the first book in the series. The strategy is largely successful. Lovegrove incorporates elements from a wide variety of Lovecraft’s tales From his stories involving the dream cycle to fantastical creatures to elder gods. And I will admit I had a lot of fun […]
Holy crap, you guys. This book is…not what I expected. And really, really good. Heartbreaking. Eye-opening.
How have I not heard of Paolo Bagigalupi until right now? A colleague of mine recommended “Pop Squad,” and it was life changing. I had to go out and find the whole collection. Bagigalupi’s writing is an amazing mix of darkly twisted but heartfelt prose. His short story collection, Pump Six & Other Stories, covers eleven forays into his speculative imagination. My favorites were “The Fluted Girl,” “Pop Squad,” and “Pump Six,” but all the stories in the collection share a new look on post apocalyptic worlds and the price of immortality. Speculative short fiction is hard to get right; […]
Clade: “a group of organisms believed to have evolved from a common ancestor, according to the principles of cladistics.” Told over decades, Clade is a bit like a short story compendium of characters from the same family. Adam and Ellie start a family in the shadow of global warming and the catastrophes it will unveil. As they age and grow apart, the narrative shifts to other members of the family, living out different iterations of the same problem: how to survive in a world that is quickly closing it’s borders and has no where left to go. It isn’t a […]
I love Sherlock Holmes and I love the world of horror that HP Lovecraft created. Seeing the two of them brought together was almost irresistible to me but I have seen Holmes placed in a world where logic doesn’t apply before, most notably the collection called shadows over Baker Street. There are aspects of this book that are very reminiscent of some of the best stories in that particular collection. Where the author is most effective is in trying to really ground homes in this World where he hast to turn into magic to try to solve cases and save humanity. Lovegrove […]