Got my June Locus which as usual was mauled by the postal service. Every once in a while they send these in an envelope and so it arrives in a more pristine fashion. In any case, I was thrilled to see that Sharon & Steve’s Crystal Soldier (a new Liaden novel) had made the hardcover bestseller list. Also, surprised but pleased to see that the trade edition of Shadows over Baker Street, published back in March, made a showing. Go team!
Also, kudos to Jay for his score in Asimov’s. Locus seems to agree as to the worth of this fine story: “Lake is immensely skillful in his balancing of secular and spiritual values, of the instrumentalities of random chance and higher design. As an inquiry into the complexities of competing human mindsets and as an amusing, grittily convincing SF fable, Martyrs’ Carnival makes marvelous, thought-provoking reading.”
Jim Butcher’s second fantasy in the Codex Alera series (scheduled for release in less than a month) got this: “…it builds to high adventure, with engaging characters and a satisfying conclusion that brings resolution to the current crises while laying an intriguing foundation for future volumes.”
Elsewhere, they had this to say: “Also strong is Elizabeth Bear’s And the Deep Blue Sea….this is of course a retelling of the Faust legend, and a very good one, inventive, ripe with fresh twists on an antique scenario, spiritually optimistic yet disarmingly candid about the ease with which damnation can be invited. Bear clearly has a good line in Zelaznyesque science fantasy.” Ha! – a Zelazny comparison; go figure. Oh, and lest she think too much of herself, Charlie Brown notes in his editorial letter, “It was a pleasure to turn to Elizabeth Bear. I read her first novel Hammered, last month, and have now read its two ‘sequels,’ Scardown and Worldwired. Only they aren’t sequels. It’s really one long novel published in three volumes. Luckily, all three parts are appearing this year so I can recommend it as best first novel of the year, and a possible Hugo nominee. It’s gritty, exciting, has fine characters, and the best AI since Mike went quiet. I especially like the well-reasoned idea of the US as a second-rate country and Canada as the world leader in Space. After all, nice guys should finish first sometimes.” Oh, wait, that won’t help at all, will it….
Coming at the end of a day when I was very much struggling with the tide of email and the need to get manuscripts and proposals *out* this definitely lifts my spirits. Thanks guys. Hurray for good stories!