An intense psychological experience, Lily Brooks-Dalton’s “Good Morning, Midnight” carried me through the heart-freezing interior landscapes of its two main characters as they struggled to survive in hostile settings. My two days with this speculative novel set me on edge … Continue reading Notes on “Good Morning, Midnight”
The Dilemma: should I pick up the paperback of Rutherford’s The Forest that I started a a while ago? I’d placed the bookmark at the end of a chapter and put the book down just as the narrative was plunging me into … Continue reading Escape From Planet Earth?
Three writers volunteered to ‘Beta-read’ my first draft of A New ZooCatron, a fantasy novella about cat-like creatures arriving on Earth from deep in the cosmos. One of the readers is truly a rocket scientist and she pointed out the … Continue reading Getting It Right
Having read Ken Liu’s PAPER MENAGERIE, a collection of his short stories, plus his bio and credits, I felt I’d had the good fortune to ‘stumble’ upon an excellent writer and translator whose work gave me a new perspective on speculative and ‘science’ fiction. So, I eagerly read his collection of Chinese scifi short stories he translated and compiled in the anthology INVISIBLE PLANETS. The included works vary in context, level of optimism/despair, characters, plots [of course], and themes, but they all expose the frailty of our species–self-absorption, self-destructive tendencies, depression, and greed. The tales’ settings may be “out there,” … Continue reading INVISIBLE PLANETS – Ken Liu, editor and translator
Clifford D. Simak was an award-winning American science fiction writer, born in 1904 in Millville, Wisconsin. Setting a story like Time and Again (1951) in rural Wisconsin characterizes much of Simak’s fiction. For example, he attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison and in Time and Again Simak imagines a University of North America, located a short distance from the confluence of the Wisconsin and Mississippi Rivers. Another pervasive theme in this novel and other Simak fiction is time travel, in his view rarely a good strategy for escaping contemporary woes. Asher Sutton, a human transformed by his deep-space planetary encounter with ‘symbiotic … Continue reading Reading Time and Again, by Clifford D. Simak
Thoughts on Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch, by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett. Suppose, at the end of the work day, you and your close friend are meeting for coffee. Sitting in your favorite … Continue reading All Hell Broke Loose–Almost