Up the Fire Road (part one), fiction by Eileen Gunn

* “If life seems slow and meaningless, go somewhere where you depend on Christy to get you back.” (“Up the Fire Road” originally appeared in Eclipse One.) Andrea The main thing to understand about Christy O’Hare is he hates being bored. Complicated is interesting, simple is dull, so he likes to make things complicated. Used […]

A Review of Brown Girl in the Ring, by Nalo Hopkinson

Serving the Spirits In this near future, post-apocalyptic Toronto, the wealthy live in the suburbs. In the inner city, government and social structures have disintegrated after a series of riots. “The ones who couldn’t or wouldn’t get out,” use a system of barter, and live under the shadow of crime-lord Rudy and his posse. Ti-Jeanne, […]

A Review of Waking the Moon, by Elizabeth Hand

The Moon with a Knife-Sharp Edge Three unwitting college students stand between the reawakening of a dark goddess and the Benandanti, a secret society of magicians who have been running the world for thousands of years. Waking the Moon, which won a Mythopoeic Award and a James Tiptree, Jr. Award, is part horror, part coming […]

A Review of Silently and Very Fast by Catherynne M. Valente

A Beautiful View of The Singularity Imagine if you could go anywhere, do anything, and never be alone. Would it bother you if your closest companion and co-creator was a machine? You might think so, but then again you might change your mind after reading this gorgeous, evocative novel, narrated by Elefsis, the machine in […]

A Review of Illyria, by Elizabeth Hand

An Elegant Explosion of Repressed Creativity and Desire This is beautifully written, Romantic (in the 18th century sense, not the Danielle Steele sense) novella about soul mates, forbidden love, and being a magical child in a family that’s lost its mojo. It’s also about talent, both the kind that emerges full-blown and the kind that […]

A Review of Briar Rose by Robert Coover

He is surprised to discover how easy it is. The branches part like thighs, the silky petals caress his cheeks. His drawn sword is stained, not with blood, but with dew and pollen. Yet another inflated legend. He has undertaken this great adventure, not for the supposed reward—what is another lonely bedridden princess?—but in order […]

A Review of Among Others by Jo Walton

This very readable book (which won the Nebula Award for Best Novel this year) is part coming of age, part fantasy and part uber-geek love-letter to the classics of science fiction. Much of the drama has already happened before the novel starts. We learn that Morwenna and her twin sister Morganna spent their childhoods playing […]

A Review of Little, Big, by John Crowley

Little, Big is a modern classic of fantastic literature, a book that is praised far and wide, and with good reason. It’s a beautifully written, deep meditation on complex and arcane philosophies of magic and metaphysics (from Plato to Rosicrucian and Theosophist) and the challenges of living an ethical life in light of such considerations. […]

Shakespeare, the Sexy Fantatist

Most people will never read Shakespeare after wading through Romeo and Juliet and maybe Hamlet in high school, and that’s understandable. Elizabethan English is a bit of brain twister. It’s a shame, though, because unlike many greats of the past that we know we should read because it’s good for us, Shakespeare should be read […]