Tuesday, June 17, 2008

(Not So) Lazy Linkage


It’s been a month since the last "(Not So) Lazy Linkage" article already, so without further ado – the links to all the interesting stuff that has been going on since then.
1.) Subterranean Press has announced “Songs of the Dying Earth” – the Jack Vance Tribute Anthology.
---"Jack Vance has been a seminal figure in the development of modern fantasy, so much so that it’s nearly impossible to imagine the genre as we know it today existing without him… Today, in order to honor the magnificent career of Jack Vance, one unparalleled in achievement and impact, George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois, with the full cooperation of Jack Vance, his family, and his agents, suggest a Jack Vance tribute anthology called Songs of the Dying Earth, to encourage the best of today’s fantasy writers to return to the unique and evocative milieu of The Dying Earth, from which they and so many others have drawn so much inspiration, to create their own brand-new adventures in the world of Jack Vance’s greatest novel."
Some of the more known contributing authors are as follows: Robert Silverberg, Glen Cook, Liz Williams, Elizabeth Moon, Jeff Vandermeer, Neil Gaiman*, Dan Simmons*, Tad Williams*, Lucius Shepard* and many others… [*authors slated to contribute]. But before going all wild and ordering it right away, you should consider the price, the anthology is pretty costly! Read more.
2.) There have been some misunderstandings regarding the definition of the term hype, what constitutes hype and what does not. As I saw it, the argument was started by two different, even opposing, but both legitimate definitions of the term – the one with the positive connotation (hype as causing extreme excitedness, zeal and stimulation) and the definition with the negative connotation (blatant, sensational, exaggerated and even undeserved promotion). The whole thing started at Pat’s fantasy Hotlist (link), but the fire spread quickly over to OF Blog of the Fallen (link) and Speculative Horizons (link). Even the mighty Joe Abercrombie (link) deemed it a worthy enough topic to convey a few thoughts on it.
3.) The torrent of triumphant reviews for “The Ten Thousand” - written by the fantasy mastermind Paul Kearney, continues to spread like a plague. I’m very pleased that my fellow reviewers see eye to eye with me where “The Ten Thousand” and Paul Kearney are concerned. A great book and without a doubt one of the candidates for this year’s best fantasy novel award. The Wertzone (link) gave it a five star review, Speculative Horizons (link) gave it a four 'shields' review and Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review (link) considered the book worth nine points out of ten.
Aidan from A Dribble of Ink conducted a two part interview with Paul Kearney (part one, part 2) and it's nicely complemented with the interview by James’ (link).
4.) Land ahoy! We have a new joined member to the ranks of speculative fiction bloggers – Speculative Fiction Junkie (link). Best of luck!
Bonnie Shlakoff asked me for assistance and I agreed to give her a shout out. Bonnie is a fledgling writer who had published a few articles and stories. She started a speculative fiction blog bonnieshlakoff (link) where you can read her stories of the Tumbleweed series.
5.) Now to the books that piqued my interest. Pat (Pat's Fantasy Hotlist) is the lucky bastard who got to be the first of us to review Steven Erikson's "Toll the Hounds" (link).
excerpt from the review:
"Though most of the book remains a slow-moving affair, when Toll the Hounds kicks it into gear it delivers on all fronts. Moreover, it sets the stage for what's to come. Still, I have to concede that the ending likely saved this one from being what could have been the weakest volume of the series."
Don't forget the two crispest interviews with Steven Erikson, the first is available at Fantasy Book Critic (link) and the second is situated over at Fantasy Book Spot (link).
excerpt from the interview at FBC:
---Steven: "I don't think it's a secret any more that I've signed with Bantam UK for six more fantasy novels. Two trilogies, in fact. But not one a year – that pace (with novellas thrown in) is wearing me out. I won't get into any details on the books, or whatever stand-alone works I may squeeze in here and there. Not yet. Too early."
John from Grasping for the Wind wrote a great review for what seems like a very intriguing debut effor – “Destroyermen – Into the Strom” by Taylor Anderson (link). Meanwhile, Grasping for the Wind reached an important milestone - 50.000 visitors since John started with the blog a few years ago (link). Congratulations again John, it is well deserved!
It's no secret that Blindman and I are big fans of Glen Cook (he dwarfs me in both fandom and stature), so I'm happy to link to another site that thinks much of Glen Cook's work; Rob's Blog o' Stuff is "trying to catch up with the Classics" and this time Rob chose to review "A Cruel Wind: A Chronicle of the Dread Empire" (link). Great stuff.
If you are looking for something new, fresh in approach, absolutely free, but above all something that bespeaks quality and entertainment at the same time, then you should look no further than “Shadow Unit” (link), a full “season” story arc consisting of seven short stories and a full novel, written by a “collective minds” of Bear, Bull, Monette, Shetterly and Downum (most of them well known in the world of genre literature). I’m being intentionally vague, since you should really go and read what Joe Sherry from Adventures in Reading has to say about “Shadow Unit: The Complete First Season” (link).
Airbender is a western fantasy anime series and while it has nothing to do with books or literature per se you should really check out Adam’s (The Wertzone) review of season one (Book 1: Water) and season two (Book 2: Earth) of “Airbender: The Last Avatar”, if you enjoy anime with a fabulous story. If I quote Adam, then what sets Airbender apart from a big number of the Japanese anime series is that its rarely faltering in focus and pace (i.e. little or no filler episodes!).
The last but not the least of the reviews I'm linking in this episode of "...Lazy Linkage" will be Dark Wolf's review of Paedar Ó Guilin's "The Inferior" (link); if you are still unfamiliar with this highly enjoyable fantasy (with shades of sf) novel you should check out Dark Wolf's impressions as they mirror my own to a large extent.
6.) Some other interesting articles, interviews, speculations and musings I came across are:
  • SF Signal's MIND MELD: Who Are Tomorrow's Genre Big Stars? (+Top 18 Genre Authors To Keep an Eye On)...if you are interested in who the next Abercrombie, Lynch or Rothfuss might be.
  • Brian Ruckley, author of the popular "Winterbirth" and the recently released "Bloodheir", muses on product placement. Interesting read, see for yourself :).
  • Jonathan McCalmont shares his 'blasphemous thoughts' on the aggressive expansionist tendencies of science fiction and asks himself if YA is the latest succumbed victim to this tendencies. This guy really has a way with words.


Aidan Moher said...

Thanks for the (Not So) lazy link!

A Dribble of Ink

Dark Wolf said...

Uros, thank you very much for the link :)

ThRiNiDiR said...

You are welcome guys.

Adam Whitehead said...

Cheers for the link. Sorry, a bit late in noticing it.

And it's Avatar: The Last Airbender rather than the inverse ;-)


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