Justin Chats with CJ Henderson


I recently chatted with C.J. Henderson, whose book Central Park Knight, sequel to Brooklyn Knight (which was really fun!) is being released today by Tor. We’ll be giving away...

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Stardust: Sweet and simple adult fairytale


Stardust by Neil Gaiman Go, And Catch a Falling Star… If you like fantasy stories filled with magic, adventure and romance, but are getting sick and tired of boring,...

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Foiled by Jane Yolen and Mike Cavallaro: Instant Classic


Foiled by Jane Yolen (writer) and Mike Cavallaro (illustrator) The past few weeks I’ve been spending time writing reviews that focus on new Monthly Comics I think would make...

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Recent Posts

The Shadow of Elysium: A dynamic, eye-opening update

The Shadow of Elysium by Django Wexler

The Shadow of Elysium is the second novella in Django Wexler’s THE SHADOW CAMPAIGNS series. In The Penitent Damned, the preceding novella, we witnessed Alex’s untimely capture by the Priests of the Black. This installment is a continuation of Alex’s story, albeit I didn’t realize it at first because the story is told through the viewpoint of Abraham, a newly introduced character who also has demonic abilities. When the story begins, Abraham is being transported through the wilderness in Murnsk; his arresters later join in with Alex’s, and both prisoners continue on towards Elysium, where they will be imprisoned for life for containing demons. Roughly every other chapter is a flashback of Abraham’s, through which Wexler introduces us to t... Read More

The Monster’s Ring: A quick and breezy Halloween tale

The Monster’s Ring by Bruce Coville

Note: This book is titled Russell Troy, Monster Boy in some markets.

For kids that are too young for the complexity of the HARRY POTTER series, and yet still interested in fantasy stories, Bruce Coville's MAGIC SHOP books might be the thing to hook them up with. Five in total, each one revolves around a simple premise: a young child with the usual kid problems (home trouble, bullies, crushes, angry teachers, etc) stumble across Mr Elives' Magic Shop, and leaves with an unusual purchase which initially creates more trouble for them, but ultimately teaches them important lessons.

They've recently been reissued with new cover art by Tony DiTerl... Read More

Thoughtful Thursday: The Nebula and Hugo Awards: You choose the winners!

(MEGA-GIVEAWAY: One lucky commenter will get a copy of each of the nominated books — that’s right, eight volumes!)

Yes, it’s award season again. With the Prometheus Awards short list announced and the Arthur C. Clarke Awards already chosen, the Nebulas and the Hugos are coming up rapidly. The Nebulas will be awarded at the Nebula Weekend in Chicago, Illinois, June 4-7. The Hugo awards will be announced on August 22, at Sasquan, in Spokane, Washington.

The Hugos made the news this year ... Read More

Two Tales of the Iron Druid Chronicles: More Atticus and Oberon, please!

Two Tales of the Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne

Well, I just can’t get enough of the Druid Atticus O’Sullivan and Oberon, his Irish Wolfhound. So, when I saw that two of Kevin Hearne’s IRON DRUID CHRONICLES short stories were recently produced in audio format and narrated by the amazing Luke Daniels, I had to have them. These stories have also been released in ebook format.

“Kaibab Unbound” is Kevin Hearne’s first short story. It takes place just a couple of weeks before the events of the first IRON DRUID CHRONICLES novel, Hounded. Atticus and Oberon are driving from Phoenix, where they live, to the Grand Canyon for a little nature retreat. When they stop in at their favorite coffee shop, Atticus notices a pretty young witch with a bad aura. As they’re driving on the interstate... Read More

The Wrath of Fu Manchu: Final and fun footnotes of Fu

The Wrath of Fu Manchu by Sax Rohmer

Previously here on FanLit, I placed an article that discussed every one of the 13 Fu Manchu novels that British author Sax Rohmer produced over a period of decades. But there was one Fu book that I did not discuss therein, for the simple reason that it is not a full-length novel, but rather a collection of miscellaneous items. The Wrath of Fu Manchu is the 14th and final book in Rohmer's FU MANCHU series. I refer here to the original DAW publication of 1976, which included four short stories dealing with the good doctor, as well as some other Rohmer stories not related to the series but interesting in their own right. The four Fu stories serve as mere footnotes or codas to the previous 13 novels, but all are intere... Read More

WWWebsday: May 27, 2015

On this day in 1937, the Golden Gate Bridge opened, connecting San Francisco to Marin County. At the time, it was the longest suspension bridge in the world, at 4200 feet.

Wooly Mammoth on the range

Writing, Editing, and Publishing:

I am very sad to say goodbye to one of my favorite writers, the great Tanith Lee, whose fairy-tale adaptations largely made me the reader and writer of fairy tales that I am today. The link above is to her obituary in Locus, but the Guardian also posted a particularly good one.

We are a couple days late for Towel Day, an annual ... Read More

The Fold: Fun for everyone

The Fold by Peter Clines

The Fold, by Peter Clines, is a science fiction thriller with a superhero aspect, a bit of Sherlock Holmes and a bit of H.P. Lovecraft thrown in. It’s got dry humor, plenty of pop-culture references and an engaging main character who can be surprisingly vulnerable. This is a perfect summer read; the ideal vacation book. It’s a book you’ll want to pass along to your friends when you’re done.

Leland “Mike” Erickson teaches high school English in a small town in New England. His life is tranquil and even uneventful, until his college friend Reggie, who works for the Department of Defense, comes for a visit. Reggie is part of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), and his division oversees a project in San Diego called the Albuquerque Door. The scientists running the Door project insist that they can fold space, transporting matter across t... Read More

Shadow Show: All-New Stories in Celebration of Ray Bradbury: Four great stories make it easy to recommend

Shadow Show: All-New Stories in Celebration of Ray Bradbury edited by Sam Weller & Mort Castle

Thanks to our recent book chats here, I’ve reread a bit of Ray Bradbury lately, so I was well primed to pick up the 2012 tribute anthology edited by Sam Weller and Mort Castle, entitled Shadow Show: All-New Stories in Celebration of Ray Bradbury, which collects 26 contemporary authors who were asked to write a story inspired or informed by Bradbury. The task was sufficiently non-restrictive that the stories run a gamut of style and type: horror, fantasy, dystopia, science fiction, as well as several with no fantastical element whatsoever, which may surprise those who know Bradbury only through classic novels like Fahrenheit 451 or Something Wicked This Way Comes, or collections ... Read More

The Rebirths of Tao: Satisfying conclusion, but I hope there’ll be more

The Rebirths of Tao by Wesley Chu

Warning: This review contains spoilers for the previous books, The Lives of Tao and The Deaths of Tao. You can’t read The Rebirths of Tao as a stand-alone — you really need to read the previous books first. My review will not spoil The Rebirths of Tao.

The Rebirths of Tao is the third and final book in Wesley Chu’s TAO series about a race of aliens (called the Quasing) who crash-landed on Earth millennia ago and, in an effort to get their spaceships working so they could get back to their home planet, are responsible for the evolution of the human species. They have managed this by possessing the bodies of creatures they found on Earth and guiding their actio... Read More

Trial of Intentions: Issues of pacing and plot overwhelm an intriguing work

Trial of Intentions by Peter Orullian

I really want to like Trial of Intentions, Peter Orullian’s second novel in his VAULT OF HEAVEN series. I’d really like to recommend it. Not so much for its plot or characters or style, which mostly run from not so good to average, though he has his moments. But underneath the separate pieces of the novel, one has a sense, a somewhat tentative, barely tangible sense, that Orullian is trying to do something interesting here. And it’s for that tantalizing glimpse of the big picture, the “intention” as one of his characters might say (intention being an important concept here), that I so wanted to be able to enthusiastically recommend this book. But thanks to the aforementioned weaknesses, its too-great length, and a storyline that absolutely infuriated me through its latter stages (m... Read More