Pixel Scroll 9/14 Do Not Ask For Whom The Dice Roll

shelf-1(1) These new bookshelf superheroes appear to save your favorite reads on Colossal:

Created by Artori Design, these fun metal bookshelves give the impression a stealthy superhero is saving your books from certain doom. The sideways version uses a magnet to harmlessly attach the end of the books, while the other model is a wall-mounted floating shelf that gives the impression a caped crusader is giving your books a boost from below. The shelves are currently available through Designboom.

(2) Amazing Stories continues its survey of what’s eligible for the 1941 Retro Hugo Awards with Part 3 – The Cover Artists:

The artists represented on the covers of 1940 run the gamut from the iconically familiar to the obscure:

  • Earle Bergey
  • Jack Binder
  • Hannes Bok
  • Howard V. Brown
  • Margaret Brundage
  • Edd Cartier
  • A. Drake
  • Virgil Finlay
  • Robert Fuqua
  • Gilmore
  • H.R. Hammond
  • CL Hartman
  • M. Isip
  • William Juhre
  • Julian S Krupa & Leo Morey
  • Gabriel Mayorga
  • H.W. McCauley
  • Leo Morey
  • Stockton Mulford
  • Frank R. Paul
  • Ray Quigley
  • Hubert Rogers
  • George Rozen
  • Charles Schneeman
  • J.W. Scott
  • Bob Sherry
  • J. Allen St. John

(3) Yesterday’s installment of Pearls Before Swine has been accused of being a Feghoot.

(4) Mark Ciocco reviews The End of All Things by John Sclazi on Kaedrin Weblog.

The End of All Things When John Scalzi started his little serialized publishing experiment a few years ago with The Human Division, it felt a little like a television series. Each story was self contained and episodic in nature, and Scalzi even went as far as to call each installment an “Episode”. The book (unexpectedly and distressingly) even ended on a cliffhanger, and when he announced the sequel, he did so by saying that it had been “renewed for a second season“. Well, the new season has finally arrived, in the form of The End of All Things.

(5) While I’ve only made one attempt ever to get a blurb for something, I wish I had read John Scalzi’s blurb policy first. He wasn’t the one I asked, but based on what I learned here I would have gone about it differently.

All blurb requests must come through editors/publishers, not authors. This is to avoid me having to tell an author I don’t like their work enough to blurb it. That’s awkward. I will pre-emptively turn down requests from authors. So if you’re an author who wants me to blurb your work, ask your editor to take care of it.

(6) Deidre Kitcher would like to raise $55,000 to make a movie of Star of the Guardians.

Do you love Sci Fi movies?  Well, we’ve secured the rights to the best selling book series “Star of the Guardians” by author Margaret Weis and have a script ready to go!  Our vision for this epic story could be described as “Game of Thrones” meets “Battlestar Galactica”.

Her Indiegogo appeal has 23 days left to run and has raised $4,151 so far.

(7) The R2-D2 themed Boeing 787 Dreamliner rolled out the other day. It will go into service on All Nippon Airways (ANA).

635776731994890619-star-wars-plane3Star Wars theme music played and Storm Troopers held guard as the hangar doors began to open. Within moments, a Boeing 787 “Dreamliner” painted with likeness of R2-D2 emerged to a cheering crowd at Boeing’s wide-body assembly line facility in Everett.

The airplane featuring images of the loyal droid from the Star Wars franchise belongs to Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways (ANA) and will begin flying paying passengers Oct. 18. The jet’s first revenue flight is scheduled for a run between Tokyo’s Haneda Airport to Vancouver, Canada.

Saturday’s unveiling had been eagerly anticipated by both aviation and Star Wars enthusiasts since plans for the R2-D2-themed Dreamliner were first announced in April.

(8) The Museum of Pinball actually isn’t that far from me – down the road in Banning, CA. I should pay a visit.

Long before video games found their way into the home, arcades across America were filled with the lights and sounds of mechanical pinball machines and the young people who were enamored by them. These machines are now finding their way back into the spotlight in barcades, private collections, and professional pinball tournaments.

They broke the Guinness World Record on January 17 with 331 people playing pinball simultaneously.

And here are some other impressive numbers associated with the museum.

  • 40,000 square feet designated for the first phase of the Museum of Pinball and another 87,000 square feet we’ve already leased to a local business (which we hope to expand to in the future with more pinball and arcade games).
  • 800 pinball machines and arcade games (both vintage and modern).

(9) On this day in history:

According to Martin Grams’ book The Twilight Zone: Unlocking the Door to a Television Classic, the final scene of “Kick the Can” was filmed on September 14, 1961.

[Thanks to Dave Doering, and John King Tarpinian for some of these stories. Title credit to File 770 contributing editor the day Nigel.]

 

253 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 9/14 Do Not Ask For Whom The Dice Roll

  1. @Eve

    I’m trying to make the same decision based on a very similar list. I’m pretty sure I’m going to read Sorcerer to the Crown next. I recently read Cho’s short story “Monkey King, Faerie Queen” and I loved it so much that it’s motivated me to move her book to the top of the stack.

    @Cat et al.

    I’m with you in the City of Stairs fandom. I’m pretty sure it would have been my first place vote for Best Novel if it had made the list. I’m very excited to read the sequel in January.

  2. I am both blessed and cursed to have my reading order decided for me by the library waitlists.

    Next up is Falling in Love with Hominids and Slow Bullets, which just showed up today.

    I’ve done the math and it’s unlikely I’ll get Uprooted in time. Possible, if most people turn it over quickly, but unlikely.

  3. @Microtherion

    Have you tried Pinball FX2 ? It is not trying for total realism but it has some great tables. The game is free with one table and limited time play on all other tables. But there are bundles of tables and they go on sale on STEAM quite often. I bought the Humble Bundle weekly deal they had and ended up buying most of the rest of the tables.

  4. City of Stairs is one of the books that is motivating me to nominate for the first time. If I’d nominated last year, it would have been on my list alongside The Girl with All the Gifts, Full Fathom Five, Station Eleven, and undecided. To see how close it would have come sans Puppies makes me embarassed to sit by and not nominate.

  5. Literary and entertaining are not necessarily opposites. “Alice in Wonderland” is one of the most literarily sophisticated works ever written.

  6. @Jack Lint (Re: Peter Capaldi’s Oscar): And he won it for writing and directing a wonderful short film, “Franz Kafka’s ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.’ ” Makes me curious if Dr. Who will ever meet Kafka…

  7. I’d looked at prices of SFF pinball machines to see if my club could afford one for its clubhouse and for out convention game room. Sadly, the answer seems to be “No, you can’t afford it, at least if it actually works”

  8. @ DMS
    I’ve read both of those! We clearly have Book-Smuggler-following in common. But that reminds me of another recommendation of theirs: The Empress Game. Has anyone read this?

    @Jim & @ Mark
    Reading that Zen Cho story sounds enjoyable in and of itself, but might help me make up my mind too.

  9. Mark on September 15, 2015 at 2:45 am said:
    The latest issue of Asimovs has a Novella – The Citadel of Weeping Pearls by Aliette de Bodard – that is well worth the price of admission on its own.

    Thankx for the rec. Loved the excerpt and bought the issue digitally. May end up on my list.

    Does anyone have a suggestion for getting individual digital back issues of Asimov’s? I tried at asimovs.com and at Amazon and failed at Google-foo, too. Am I just SOL for recommendations people have made for stories in earlier issues?

  10. Eve,

    I just finished Empress Game! It’s a lot of fun and starts with a knife fight. I don’t even remember it being on booksmugglers. A friend picked it up based on the cover and then kept raving about it during Rocket League matches. Action packed aside from a brief section around the 30% mark. It’s the first of a trilogy. I don’t think the end is a cliffhanger as the major plot for the book wraps up, but it does end in the midst of set up for the sequel.

    Does anyone have recommendations for other fun books with knife fights?

  11. @junego

    Asimovs back issues are available via Google Play. It’s not a very satisfactory solution, as you don’t seem to be able to get an epub backup. If anyone finds a better outlet for acquiring them, I’d love to hear about it.
    I’ve no idea why back issues aren’t on Amazon etc – it doesn’t seem like they want my money.

  12. @ DMS
    One of the Book Smugglers (forget which one) raved about Empress Game just last week over at Kirkus.

  13. I have now read most of The Apex Book of World SF 4 and would like to say a few words about the Hugo-eligible stories in it (the last three I will discuss are my favorites). I happen to like fiction on the “literary” side of SFF: stories that suggest more than they say, that make their point obliquely, that contain intertwining themes, that are stylistically subtle or innovative. And the editor of this volume, Mahvesh Murad, is largely of the same mind; not that there aren’t a few straightforwardly-told entries, too. Many stories here are magical-realist, weird, or surreal rather than pure SFF.

    Some of the stories are very challenging to read. “Like a Coin Entrusted in Faith”, by Shimon Adaf, went way over my head. It gets into very esoteric Jewish mysticism, it takes the form of a letter exchange between two scholars, who are interested (among other things) in people who may have returned from the future, entwined with a story about a woman asked to act as midwife to demons, and it’s even more confusing than that sounds.

    However, there’s an exercise in sheer surrealism called “Six Things We Found During the Autopsy”, by Kuzhali Manickavel, which I’ve read twice and wound up really liking; some schoolgirls recount the “autopsy” of one of their number which, rather than revealing anything much about that girl, paints a picture of their own thoughts and judgments.

    Horror stories: “Setting Up Home” by Sabrina Huang (trans. Jeremy Tiang) is brief and quite effective in building from an apparently-harmless opening to an appalling end; I’m not sure if familiarity with its cultural setting would increase or lessen its effect. I personally find that the troubling effect lingers, even increases, in retrospect. “Black Tea” by Samuel Marolla (trans. Andrew Tanzi) brings nothing much noteworthy to a trapped-in-creepy-house-with-monster story.

    “The Language of Knives” by Haralambi Markov, on the other hand, is definitely not lacking in originality. What I actually think of this extravagantly gruesome, emotionally laden story, I really don’t know.

    Zen Cho’s “The Four Generations of Chang E” transposes a paradigmatic immigration story to the moon; it’s beautifully written. “Djinns Live by the Sea” by Saad Z. Hossain satirically confronts a jaded rich man with djinns even older and more cynical than him. “Colour Me Grey” by Silayi Swabir is a political fable, which might be very pointed to some people (such as in the author’s Kenya) but didn’t connect with me.

    From the Caribbean, the short piece “Single Entry” by Celeste Rita Baker is wondrous and doesn’t give up its meaning easily; perhaps other people than me would love it a lot. Marigi John’s “The Corpse” is a genuinely disorienting magical-realist story (mostly a character portrait of a coroner), but not one of the best of its kind I’ve read.

    Dilman Dila, from Uganda, wrote “How My Father Became a God”, the most charming of these stories. It is in the style of an oral tale and set in premodern times; the child Akidi tells of her misfit father who is always looking for technological innovations (wonderfully kooky ones), which is one reason he doesn’t get along with his brothers, but the real reason is that his values (shared only by his wife and daughter) don’t fit with the narrow minds of the family squabbling over money and status. I do recommend it, along with the other two that made the strongest impression on me:

    “The Lady of the Soler Colony” by Rocío Rincón (trans. James & Marian Womack), set in the author’s hometown Barcelona. Six “colonies” (factories) based around goddesslike machines, the “Ladies”. An industrial society with a pervading wrongness to it, with creepiness gradually revealed, but the real nastiness is the mundane economic exploitation. No tidy resolution, but an impression of layers-upon-layers of unease.

    “The Farm” by Elana Gomel. It is set during the Russian Revolution, and the main character is a Jewish man leading a small group of rural Bolsheviks; what is noteworthy is the use of the device of his encounters with strange beings called Eaters to draw a remarkably rich picture of both the character and the times.

    Some of these stories are available online; I am putting the links in a separate comment.

  14. @Vasha

    Great review, thank you. I’ve not started on my copy yet, but coincidentally I’d read The Language of Knives online. I think I know what you mean – it’s a story I can admire and be impressed by, but I don’t think I enjoyed it in any way. Mind you, I don’t think it wanted to be enjoyed.

  15. Book Recs: Long ago and far away — 15 years and on the opposite coast — I found a small, easily digestible space opera series by Stephen Ames Berry that started with a book called The Biofab War. It continued in The Battle for Terra Two, The AI War, and Final Assault. I found it a thoroughly enjoyable light milSF read with some cool worldbuilding. They’ve relatively recently been released on Kindle ebooks with some editing and additional materiel — the author went back and added some much-needed and quite-welcome characterizations that add a lot (and fixed some clumsy and/or problematic passages.) You’re not going to find profound insights, but it’s a fun and easily-devoured read.

  16. Thx, Mark. At least Google Play gives me access so I can read recommendations and browse other issues for titles/authors that look interesting.

    My Hugo reading is just really starting. Had to take a break after the Hugo nominations. My brains were fried from forced reading.

    I DID watch the Sense8 season and agree with all the recs it’s getting. Almost surely going on my list for next year. I think I may nominate the first episode for SF* and the whole season for LF. I don’t think that qualifies as double nomination, does it?

    *Am tempted to nominate the “What’s Going On?” episode instead because of best use of song tie-in, but am afraid it doesn’t really stand alone without seeing the previous episodes.

  17. Hey, RedWombat, I have a business-related question and am not seeing a good place to send you a private-y note. Would you e-mail me at bbaugh@me.com in your copious free time?

  18. Oooh, Pinball.

    I actually used to own about 5 machines back when I didn’t live in a 800 sq ft apartment.

    I say “about” because the collection was constantly changing. Twilight Zone, Medieval Madness, Safecracker, No Good Gofers, Elvira’s Scared Stiff, Revenge from Mars, Star Wars Episode 1.

    I did the shopping for a friend of mine as well and he ended up with an Attack from Mars which is an excellent machine.

    Chicago is (appropriately enough given the locations of Stern and Williams/Bally) undergoing a bit of a pinball Renaissance with several of the beercades offering cheap (or free) access to a decent selection of machines.

  19. @Scott Frazer – I liked that Scared Stiff came with an option sticker so you could cover Elvira’s cleavage in case your arcade had to be more family friendly.

    For those interested, The Internet Pinball Database (ipdb.org) is a good way to look at some of your favorite machines. (Provided you can remember the name correctly.) You can also find machines you’ve never heard of by using the search function.

  20. Pinball fanciers might enjoy some of the stuff that Twitch.tv streamer LethalFrag broadcasts. His schedule including show his restoration of old machines, and then playing them, along with various video games and such. Good fun; I’ve been known to use his streams as a sort of tonic for the nerves, since he is astonishingly calm.

  21. @DMS

    Knife fights? Hmmm, nothing really leaping to mind. There’s the duel at the end of Dune, I suppose.

    Also Use of Weapons, but that isn’t really the sort of knife or the sort of fight you were thinking about, I think.

  22. @Ann Somerville

    There’s certainly no mincing of words in that article, is there? I predict that if it gets back to its targets then some serious fireworks will ensue.

  23. @Magewolf

    Have you tried Pinball FX2 ?

    I don’t think I own any of the platforms that is supported on.

  24. HEAT FOUR – RECENT REVELATIONS

    1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness
    Chime, Franny Billingsley

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The March North, Graydon Saunders
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Seraphina, Rachel Hartman
    The Lost Sun, Tessa Gratton

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    The Archived, Victoria Schwab
    Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    The Drowning Girl, Caitlin R. Kiernan
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    The Diviners, Libba Bray
    Life After Life, Kate Atkinson

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar
    Froi of the Exiles, Melina Marchetta

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear
    The Golem and the Djinni, Helene Wecker

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan
    The Bees, Laline Paull

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater
    Cuckoo Song, Frances Hardinge

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett
    Prince of Thorns, Mark Lawrence

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson
    The Bone Clocks, David Mitchell

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison
    Kings of the North, Elizabeth Moon

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    A Corner of White, Jaclyn Moriarty
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

  25. As usual, you can vote for one, abstain, vote for a tie, or vote for a different work by one of the authors (published no earlier than 2000.) These are works from the past few years, so they’ll likely range from stuff that’s fresh in people’s minds to stuff they haven’t gotten around to yet to stuff they’ve never heard of.

  26. 1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness
    Chime, Franny Billingsley

    Abstain; not read either.

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The March North, Graydon Saunders
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    Whee! I can vote here! I have to go for the Saunders, even though I know he’ll fail because of obscurity. Battle-Sheep for the win!

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Seraphina, Rachel Hartman
    The Lost Sun, Tessa Gratton

    Abstain; not read the Gratton.

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    The Archived, Victoria Schwab
    Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    Abstain; not read the Schwab.

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    The Drowning Girl, Caitlin R. Kiernan
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    Abstain; not read the Kiernan.

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    The Diviners, Libba Bray
    Life After Life, Kate Atkinson

    Abstain; not read either.

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar
    Froi of the Exiles, Melina Marchetta

    Abstain; not read the Marchetta.

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear
    The Golem and the Djinni, Helene Wecker

    Abstain; not read the Wecker.

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan
    The Bees, Laline Paull

    Abstain; not read the Paull

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater
    Cuckoo Song, Frances Hardinge

    Abstain; not read the Stiefvater and can’t remember the Hardinge offhand though I’m almost certain I’ve read it.

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett
    Prince of Thorns, Mark Lawrence

    Abstain; the Bennett is on my to-read mountain and I’ve not heard of the Lawrence

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson
    The Bone Clocks, David Mitchell

    Abstain; not read either

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison
    Kings of the North, Elizabeth Moon

    Ooh! Another one I can vote in! Gotta go with the Goblin Emperor.

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    A Corner of White, Jaclyn Moriarty
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

    Abstain; the Jones is in my to-read mountain and I’ve not heard of the Moriarty.

    It’s kind of funny how many match-offs I’ve read exactly one book in. I’m rather impressed there were two I could actually vote in….

  27. 7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    I have been eagerly reading the sequels: alternate history, women scientists, and dragons.

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    This got my first-place vote for the Hugo this year, and probably would have even in a more “normal” year.

  28. 4. Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    5. The Drowning Girl, Caitlin R. Kiernan

    13. The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    Evil evil dice, I didn’t think Kings of the North would have such a hard time in the first round. Unfortunately for Moon, who I adore, Goblin Emperor tickled parts of my psyche that other fantasy never does. For creating my new-found love of bureaucratic porn, I have to vote Goblin Emperor.

    Abstain for the rest.

  29. Re: SFFnal pinball machines, my favourites by decade:

    Wizard of Oz (2012ish, Jersey Jack Pinball), the first pin from a new company. The rules are great, and the lights are all addressable colour-changing LEDs, so the effects are also beautiful.

    Lord of the Rings (2004ish?, Stern PInball). Same programmer as WOz, the theme integration is fantastic. Assemble the fellowship, defend minas tirith, and traverse the paths of the dead are the multiballs. <3.

    Attack from Mars (1997, Bally/Williams). Martians attack. They're pretty funny (second city did the script), and the shots all feel really good. The T is not a jackpot, though.

    Flash Gordon (1981, Bally) Release around the time of the movie. Brutally difficult, in the good way (Just one more game!).

    Before 1980 my knowledge get a bit hazy, so I'll stop there.

    @Kevin Standlee: If you spend a bunch of time in mountain view there's pinball all over the place in the Bay Area. Other than the Pacific Pinball Museum, (excellent for older games back to the '30s), the best location is Free Gold Watch in the Haight. A t-shirt shop that put in a couple pins for people to play while they waited for their shirts to print, they now have about 25 games in the place.

  30. 1. Chime

    3. Seraphima

    4. Three Parts Dead

    5. The Drowning Girl

    6. The Diviners

    13. The Goblin Emperor

    I have strong feels about many of these votes, but my lungs are hating me and I am not wording very well. And so many more of these books are on my TBR list… Y’all have enriched my brain and dreams. Thanks.

  31. Well darn, this HEAT there is no case where I have completely read both.
    But I started Kings of the North at one point (set it aside to wait for the rest of the series) and I’ve read the Addison more than once a month since it came out, so:

    13. The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

  32. HEAT FOUR – RECENT REVELATIONS

    1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The March North, Graydon Saunders
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    Abstain.

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Seraphina, Rachel Hartman

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    The Archived, Victoria Schwab

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    The Diviners, Libba Bray

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear

    Difficult decision, but Bear wins narrowly over Wecker.

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson

    Again difficult, but Alif wins out narrowly.

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

  33. For 4) Bureaucromancy
    I write in Flex by Ferret Steinmetz (Though Three Parts Dead was also excellent)

    For 5) Madness and Death
    Maplecroft. Mostly because I really really bounced off the other one.

    For 8) Quite A Pair
    Range of Ghosts But I had a hard time choosing.

    Those are the only ones where I have read both (or had a write-in that was just more perfect than either.)

  34. HEAT FOUR – RECENT REVELATIONS

    Abstaining for most, because unread, but definitely voting for:

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Seraphina, Rachel Hartman

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

  35. DMS,

    Neal Asher’s The Skinner has a pretty good knife fight early on. The biology in the book is completely implausible, but I thought it was fun. Cheerful gore, basically (though not MilSF violence porn).

  36. 5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

  37. 2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

  38. @Eve: I just finished inhaling Touch and am wondering why no one is talking about it.

    Not sure I’d call it “not dark”, though the darkness (and everything else) is on a human scale.

    It’s definitely going on my nominations list.

    And now I’ve had four books all come to the top of the library wait list at once. Decisions, decisions.

  39. New brackets! Ok, let’s hope I’ve read more than a handful of these….

    1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    A Monster Calls, Patrick Ness
    Chime, Franny Billingsley

    Abstain; read neither

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The March North, Graydon Saunders
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    LOVED the Saunders. The sequel is on my tentative Hugo ballot. Still abstain; don’t know Abercrombie.

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Seraphina, Rachel Hartman
    The Lost Sun, Tessa Gratton

    Abstain; read neither

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    The Archived, Victoria Schwab
    Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    Loved the Gladstone. Never heard of Schwab. Abstain.

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    The Drowning Girl, Caitlin R. Kiernan
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    Abstain; read neither. This is starting to be a sad refrain….

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    The Diviners, Libba Bray
    Life After Life, Kate Atkinson

    Abstain; read neither.

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar
    Froi of the Exiles, Melina Marchetta

    Read the Samatar; should have liked it, and… didn’t. I don’t know why. Just didn’t work for me. Never read Marchetta. Abstain.

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear
    The Golem and the Djinni, Helene Wecker

    Love Bear. Don’t know Wecker. Abstain. (Is there NOTHING I can vote on?)

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan
    The Bees, Laline Paull

    Brennan is staring at me from my TBR range (it’s gotten bigger than a solitary mountain). Never read Paull. Abstain.

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    The Raven Boys, Maggie Stiefvater
    Cuckoo Song, Frances Hardinge

    I’ve read other Steifvater and enjoyed it. Never read Hardinge. Abstain.

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett
    Prince of Thorns, Mark Lawrence

    Abstain; read neither

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson
    The Bone Clocks, David Mitchell

    The Bone Clocks is also teetering on top of the TBR range. Don’t know a Willow Wilson. Abstain.

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison
    Kings of the North, Elizabeth Moon

    GAH! I finally can vote and you’re making me choose between THESE??????
    The Goblin Emperor. And I now commence the ritual hating-of-the-dice.

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    A Corner of White, Jaclyn Moriarty
    Daughter of Mystery, Heather Rose Jones

    Abstain; read neither. Although the name Heather Rose Jones rings a bell; I think I’ve read some short fiction by her…

  40. 1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    Pass

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    The Heroes, Joe Abercrombie

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    The Lost Sun, Tessa Gratton

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    Three Parts Dead, Max Gladstone

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    Pass

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    Pass

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    A Stranger in Olondria, Sofia Samatar

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear
    The Golem and the Djinni, Helene Wecker
    Both-Abstain (damn you Kyra!)

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    Pass

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Pass

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    Pass

  41. Yoicks! I can only vote on one pair. But the TBRL continues to grow.
    HEAT FOUR – RECENT REVELATIONS

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    The Goblin Emperor, Katherine Addison

    As much as I enjoyed the whole Kings of the North cycle by Moon, there is really no contest. TGE is such a wonderful character study in the middle of subverting the standard “lost heir becomes King and triumphs over all adversities (usually by whuppin’ some butt)” fantasy trope.

  42. HEAT FOUR – RECENT REVELATIONS

    1. I AM A BAD, BAD PERSON
    Abstain

    2. CANNONS AGAINST THE BATTLE-SHEEP
    Abstain

    3. INHERITED VISIONS
    Abstain

    4. BUREAUCROMANCY
    The Archived, Victoria Schwab

    5. MADNESS AND DEATH
    Maplecroft, Cherie Priest

    6. The 1920’S VS. THE 1940’S
    Abstain

    7. TRAVEL TO A TROUBLED LAND
    Abstain

    8. QUITE A PAIR
    Range of Ghosts, Elizabeth Bear

    9. CRYPTOZOOLOGY
    A Natural History of Dragons, Marie Brennan

    10. STRICTLY FOR THE BIRDS
    Abstain

    11. CHILDREN OF PRIVILEGE
    City of Stairs, Robert Jackson Bennett

    12. SECRETS AND CONSPIRACIES
    Alif the Unseen, G. Willow Wilson

    13. TROUBLED RULERS
    Kings of the North, Elizabeth Moon
    I hate you!!

    14. CONNECTING ACROSS A DIVIDE
    Abstain

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