Category Archives: Books

Jason Goodwin’s The Janissary Tree

I knew when I saw this on the new arrivals table at our local big box bookstore that I wanted to read and review it. Another murder mystery set in nineteenth-century Istanbul! Awesome! Indeed, The Janissary Tree is an impressive … Continue reading

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Orson Scott Card’s Magic Street

In his previous novels, Orson Scott Card seems to have dealt with either the (far) future or the (mythic) past. Magic Street is set squarely in the here-and-now — sort of. Baldwin Hills is a black, middle-class neighborhood in Los … Continue reading

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Jane Lindskold’s Child of a Rainless Year

Jane Lindskold is one of the more adventurous authors working in the mode of speculative fiction. From her transparent contributions to Roger Zelazny’s last two books through the contemporary urban fantasy of the athanor novels through the more-or-less “classic” fantasy … Continue reading

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Patricia A. McKillip’s Solstice Wood

It seems somewhat odd, on reflection, to realize that in a genre that so often uses magic as a metaphor and/or device, so few writers actually evoke the qualities of magic in their writing. That observation is prompted by Patricia … Continue reading

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Charles de Lint’s The Wind In His Heart

The Wind in His Heart is Charles de Lint’s first adult novel in eight years. It was worth waiting for. Usually, one tries to start a review of a book by giving a sense of the set-up, the opening situation, … Continue reading

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Elizabeth Bear’s New Amsterdam

There is no more surefire signifier of the alternate history novel than the zeppelin. One giant commercial dirigible hanging in the background is all you need to say “This world is not our world. This is a place where things … Continue reading

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Robert E. Howard’s The Horror Stories of Robert E. Howard

Robert E. Howard wrote short stories during the heyday of the pulp era, mostly for Weird Tales, from 1924 until his death by suicide in 1936 at age 30. Howard wrote in various genres, but he is now best known … Continue reading

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Alan Trist and David Dodd’s The Complete Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics

I’m Uncle Sam that’s who I am / Been hidin’ out in a rock and roll band — ‘U.S. Blues’ by Robert Hunter What’s your favourite Dead song? Do you have a fair idea of what the lyrics for that song … Continue reading

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Kate Wilhelm’s Storyteller: Writing Lessons and More from 27 Years of the Clarion Writers’ Workshop

I was prepared to like this book just because of the publisher’s name — and, of course, the fact that it is by Kate Wilhelm, one of science fiction’s legends: aside from the quality of her stories, in the 1950s … Continue reading

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Elizabeth Hand’s Wylding Hall audiobook

Liz Hand’s Wylding Hall is fucking brilliant. And it’s simply the best audiobook I’ve listened to, bar none, as her text is perfectly matched to what amounts to a full cast production in a way that’s rarely done. It is an oral … Continue reading

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Tony Magistrale, Hollywood’s Stephen King 

From back in the GMR archives, circa 2003. Edited a touch because I can’t help myself. I have been a Constant Reader of Stephen King’s work since I got my hands on a paperback copy of Salem’s Lot back in middle school. The … Continue reading

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Geoff Emerick’s Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

Geoff Emerick is one of the unsung heroes of The Beatles’ saga. Inveterate reader of liner notes that I am, I’ve been aware of his name for some time, but it tended to blend into the amorphous blob of names … Continue reading

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Marie Brennan’s The Other Side Of The Rainbow

Subtitled “the Autobiography of the voice of Clannad,” the title doesn’t quite give the full picture. An investigation of the dust jacket reveals that the book was written with Angela Little, the editor of a Christian music magazine in the … Continue reading

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Gary Westfahl’s Hugo Gernsback and the Century of Science Fiction

Hugo Gernsback occupies a unique role in the history of science fiction, but exactly what that role is at present has generated a fair amount of controversy. He has been depicted as the visionary creator of a new genre of … Continue reading

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George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois’ Songs of the Dying Earth: Stories in Honor of Jack Vance

Anyone who doubts the pervasive and ongoing influence of Jack Vance need only look at the table of contents to this tribute volume. Many of the contributors are legends themselves (Glen Cook, Neil Gaiman, Tanith Lee, Robert Silverberg); others are … Continue reading

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Dave Eggers’ The Monk of Mokha

Being half-Scandinavian on my mother’s side, I was introduced to the joys of coffee at an early age – by the time I was 5 or 6 years old, I’d say. With more than a dozen years as a coffee … Continue reading

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Joy Chant’s The High Kings: Arthur’s Celtic Ancestors

Naomi de Bruyn penned this lovely review. There were many heroes in Celtic history before the time of Arthur, and a few afterwards, as well. Sadly, they all fell forgotten by the wayside, eclipsed by the brightness that was the last great … Continue reading

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C.J.Cherryh’s Chanur’s Legacy

Chanur’s Legacy is a pendant volume to C. J. Cherryh’s great Chanur Saga, possibly one of the most engaging science-fiction series ever written. It’s a new universe — well, partly new. The story begins some years after the end of … Continue reading

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C. J. Cherryh’s The Chanur Saga; Chanur’s Homecoming

C. J. Cherryh’s The Chanur Saga is an almost-omnibus edition of her tetralogy about Pyanfar Chanur and her ship, the interstellar trader The Pride of Chanur. Because of length, the “omnibus” volume contains the first three in the series (The … Continue reading

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Simone Caroti’s The Culture Series of Iain M. Banks: A Critical Introduction

I don’t know about you, but I love reading things written by other people about things I like. Well, actually, I do know about you. You wouldn’t be reading The Green Man Review if you also didn’t like to read … Continue reading

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Jo Walton’s Among Others

When  arrives in England, she is nearly broken. Her twin sister is dead while she depends on a second-hand cane to walk. She has escaped her mad mother, who is also a witch, only to throw herself on the mercy … Continue reading

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An Armload of Fur and Leaves

In the last year or so, I found a genre that hadn’t previously been on my radar, but which I really enjoy: furry fiction. Kyell Gold had put up his novel Black Angel on the SFWA member forums, where members … Continue reading

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Nalo Hopkinson’s Mojo: Conjure Stories

Jessica Paige penned this review. “Myths of zombies and voodoo curses….” That’s what the back of Mojo: Conjure Stories, an anthology rich in talent and myth (both urban and old), claims you’ll find between its covers. No. You are bound … Continue reading

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Patricia A. McKillip’s Song for the Basilisk

Mike Stiles penned this review. Most of this story occurs in two locations. The walled city of Berylon has an agrarian culture and several noble families. The royal standard of each noble house is a medieval zoomorph. The Basilisk boasts … Continue reading

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Laurell K. Hamilton’s Cerulean Sins

Christine Doiron Penned this review. To be clear right from the start, I should say that I’m relatively new to Laurell K. Hamilton’s “Anitaverse,” as I’ve heard it called by fans. My first encounter with the incomparable vampire huntress was … Continue reading

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Gemma Files’ A Book of Tongues

Generally speaking, the supernatural western rests roughly at the heart of Joe Lansdale’s run on Jonah Hex. You can shift it a little toward Briscoe County here, a little toward the Deadlands RPG there, but really, the metaphor’s pretty solidly … Continue reading

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Catherynne M. Valente’s Apocrypha and A Guide to Folktales in Fragile Dialects

We chew scripture to keep from biting off our tongues as we seize and weep under the bodies of saints, our legs dislocate to take in the pristine coronae, until there is no Catherine left, only the numinous canon they … Continue reading

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Vernor Vinge’s Rainbows End

I’m not sure that Vernor Vinge’s Rainbows End counts as cyberpunk, although it might seem like it at first glance. The “cyber” part is there in full measure. Vinge envisions a world in the not-so-distant future in which clothes are … Continue reading

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Brian Froud’s The Secret Sketchbooks of Brian Froud

I suppose there might be someone, somewhere, who has never heard of Brian Froud. He was already gaining a reputation as an illustrator of books for children when his distinctive vision was brought to a wider audience through his designs … Continue reading

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Joseph Campbell’s The Flight of the Wild Gander: Explorations in the Mythological Dimension

The Flight of the Wild Gander is a series of essays produced betwen 1944 and 1968 in which Campbell was, he says, “circling, and from many quarters striving to interpret, the mystery of mythology.” The “mystery,” as comes clear as … Continue reading

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Kinuko Craft‘s Kinuko Craft: Drawings & Paintings

The Web site for this talented illustrator says of this impressive ‘exhibition catalog’ that: Kinuko Craft: Drawings & Paintings collects for the first time an extraordinary selection from the artist’s thirty-six year career as she portrays mythic heroes and heroines, fairy … Continue reading

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Michael Babcock’s Susan Seddon Boulet — A Retrospective

Susan Seddon Boulet’s figures are out of our dreams, those that flee from us upon awakening, those which are dispersed like dew at dawn, those which fall apart between our fingers like dust-roses. — Anais Nin I first encountered this … Continue reading

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Wendy Froud’s The Art of Wendy Froud

Wendy Froud’s The Art of Wendy Froud is an 80 page art book, a collection of examples of her amazing faerie and mythic sculptures and her musings on the nature of her work. More than that, it’s an adventure for … Continue reading

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Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere unabridged audiobook

I’m not a big fan of audiobooks. This is not to say that I don’t enjoy having someone read to me, because I do — I’m even married to a man who reads to me as often as I let … Continue reading

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Michelle Schoffro Cook’s The Cultured Cook

As someone who’s Hapa, and had a childhood rich in fermented and pickled veggies (mmm, mustard egglplant), I’m a huge fan of all things cultured.  So when this book dropped into my lap, I was stoked.  A way to make … Continue reading

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Michael DeLuca’s Reckoning 2: Creative Writing on Environmental Justice

Reckoning 2: Creative Writing on Environmental Justice is solid in weight and content. The stories, poetry, essays, and art deal with the world around us and our ethics in dealing with it. This refined focus sharpens the magazine’s impact, I … Continue reading

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Neal Asher’s Gridlinked

Wpell, I’ve finally gotten the chance to read Asher’s first novel. The good people at Tor were kind enough to send along a copy of Gridlinked, and despite my usual ne’er shortening reading queue, various other day-to-day concerns involving paperwork … Continue reading

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Steven Erikson’s The Malazan Book of the Fallen, Vols. 1-5

Gardens of the Moon Deadhouse Gates Memories of Ice House of Chains Midnight Tides I’ve been listening to Richard Wagner’s Der Ring Des Nibelungen and I’ve been reading Midnight Tides, book five of Steven Erikson’s The Malazan Book of the … Continue reading

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Glen Cook’s Working God’s Mischief

Working God’s Mischief is the fourth installment in Glen Cook’s Instrumentalities of the Night. It’s hard to know how to lead into this one, so I’m going to let Cook do it: Arnhand, Castauriga, and Navaya lost their kings. The … Continue reading

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Jane Lindskold’s Nine Gates

Ever since their exile from the Lands Born from Smoke and Sacrifice a century ago, the Thirteen Orphans and their descendants have done their best to blend into the cultures of Earth, striving to maintain their bloodlines and protect their … Continue reading

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Jane Lindskold’s Five Odd Honors

Five Odd Honors continues the story begun in Thirteen Orphans and Nine Gates, leading the Orphans and their allies back to the Lands of Smoke and Sacrifice from which they were exiled years before. Five of the Orphans need to … Continue reading

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Catherynne M. Valente’s Space Opera

It is difficult to describe how Catherynne M. Valente’s new book Space Opera manages to be so wonderfully resonant of Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy yet so insistently, inimitably her own. And yet, that’s the challenge. Valente’s skill manifests in a … Continue reading

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Tim Cooper’s The Reader: War For The Oaks

This is my first review for The Green Man Review, but I cannot help but feel I have somehow come full circle from the moment in a 2005 World Fantasy Convention bar when someone kept telling me how much they enjoyed … Continue reading

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Jim Grimsley’s Kirith Kirin

Jim Grimsley is a successful playwright and novelist who has produced, in Kirith Kirin, a singular work of fantasy. The story revolves around Jessex, a boy of fourteen when the story opens, who narrates the tale of his entry into … Continue reading

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China Miéville’s King Rat

China Miéville writes fantasies that would do Clive Barker or Neil Gaiman proud. But no one will mistake his prose for anyone else’s, as he has a style as unique as either of those two gents, who are among my … Continue reading

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G. Willow Wilson’s Cairo

The first graphic novel by journalist G. Willow Wilson, Cairo is a rather well-crafted retelling of the Aladdin story set in contemporary Cairo. With a riff that will please fans of Neil Gaiman’s American Gods and Ernest Hogan’s Smoking Mirror … Continue reading

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What’s New for the 25th of February: Aaron Copland’s ‘Hoe Down’, Wild China, identity in science fiction, ‘hedgehog highways’ and other neat stuff

He tried to reconstruct the story in his mind, but it kept getting confused, bleeding into itself like watercolors. ― Catherynne M. Valente’s The Orphan’s Tale: In the Night Garden If you like Irish whiskey, I’ve got a definite treat for you as … Continue reading

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Rita Mae Brown’s Crazy Like A Fox audiobook

If you’ve been following Green Man Review for any length of time, you’ll be aware I had a traumatic brain injury that affected my short term memory; that in turn rendered reading novels impossible, as I can’t follow the narrative worth … Continue reading

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Karen Joy Fowler, Pat Murphy, Debbie Notkin, Jeffrey D. Smith, eds., The James Tiptree Award Anthology 1; The James Tiptree Award Anthology 2

In case anyone doesn’t know, the mysteriously reclusive science-fiction writer James Tiptree, Jr., whose writing was cited by no less than Robert Silverberg as “ineluctably male,” was in fact Alice Sheldon, who, during the course of her somewhat unconventional life, … Continue reading

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Nalo Hopkinson’s The New Moon’s Arms

Nalo Hopkinson gave a speech (“Looking for Clues,” reprinted in The James Tiptree Award Anthology 3) in which she addressed one of science fiction’s quandaries with great wit and eloquence. The thrust of her remarks involved the problem of finding … Continue reading

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