Next SFF Author: Ben Aaronovitch

Author: Bill Capossere


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Convergence Problems: A strong collection

Convergence Problems by Wole Talabi

Convergence Problems by Wole Talabi is a collection of sixteen science fiction stories by the author of Shigidi and the Brass Head of Obalufon (one of my most pleasurable reads lately). As with any story collection, Convergence Problems varies in impact of each individual piece, but if I wasn’t blown away by any of the tales save one, the collection as a whole is nicely consistent along the 3-4 scale,


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Our Moon: How Earth’s Celestial Companion Transformed the Planet, Guided Evolution, and Made Us Who We Are

Our Moon: How Earth’s Celestial Companion Transformed the Planet, Guided Evolution, and Made Us Who We Are by Rebecca Boyle

Our Moon (2024), by Rebecca Boyle, is an engrossing tour of our relationship with our closest celestial neighbor, full of the usual (and less familiar) facts, while delving into science, history, and culture as Boyle, as she says, explains “How the moon was made, how the Moon made us, and how we made the Moon in our image.”

Boyle starts off not on the Moon but on Earth three-quarters of a century ago with a 39-year-old marine waiting to begin the Allies’ attack on Tarawa Atoll,


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The Allure of the Multiverse: Extra Dimensions, Other Worlds, and Parallel Universes

The Allure of the Multiverse: Extra Dimensions, Other Worlds, and Parallel Universes by Paul Halpern

The Allure of the Multiverse by Paul Halpern delves into the scientific history of the theory that seems to have taken over pop culture. Admittedly difficult at time thanks to the relatively esoteric nature of some of the theories such as string theory or M-brane theory, and also perhaps a bit mistitled, it remains a mostly clear exploration of 20th and 21st century physics.

The book opens with what might come as a surprise to some readers who have steeped in the multiverse concept via film,


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Robots and the People Who Love Them: An informative and worthy read

Robots and the People Who Love Them by Eve Herold

Robots and the People Who Love Them, by Eve Herold, is a solid look at the potential impact of social robots on our lives, though more timely research and a more focused structure would have improved the book.

Herold’s focus here is not on “robots”, but on social robots, those that we will interact with regularly and often closely. Think robots in the fields of elder care, education, child care, and companion robots (both the platonic sort and the sexbot sort).


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Crucible of Chaos: With apologies, as always, to the author

Crucible of Chaos by Sebastien de Castell

Estevar hauled up on his mule as Castle Aramor came into view through the dampening fog. The mule turned back with a baleful look.

“I know, I know. Do you think I’m enjoying this foul weather any more than you are?”

The mule dipped its head and turned it slightly aslant, looking upward at Estevar, as if to note that while they both shared the same weather, only one of them had the other’s weight as additional burden. A substantial weight at that Estevar had to acknowledge.


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Treacle Walker: A linguistic romp of a book

Treacle Walker by Alan Garner

Treacle Walker (2022), by Alan Garner, is a little book, a strange book, a layered book, a mystifying book, a linguistic romp of a book, a stimulating book, a delightful book. It may also be, to employ two of the many Google-necessitating words from its pages, a hurlothrumbo or lomperhomack, a macaroni or taradiddle of a book, though I’ll leave it to your own investigations as to whether any of those fit (if those few examples of Garner’s dialect didn’t scare you off,


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The Reinvented Detective: Some of these detective stories are excellent

The Reinvented Detective edited by Cat Rambo & Jennifer Brozek

As is typically the case for story anthologies in my experience, The Reinvented Detective, part of an anthology series edited by Cat Rambo and Jennifer Brozek, was a mixed bag, with stories ranging from excellent to good to flat at best.

All of the stories are set in the future, though the time spectrum runs from the relatively near-future to a few decades to a far-flung future of interstellar travel. Settings move from the “real world” to the virtual one (sometimes within the same story),


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The Dragons of Deepwood Fen: An enjoyable start to a new fantasy trilogy

The Dragons of Deepwood Fen by Bradley P. Beaulieu

The Dragons of Deepwood Fen is an enjoyable start to a new fantasy trilogy by Bradley P. Beaulieu. Though the novel has a few issues, Beaulieu offers up an interesting world, a complex political set-up, and a nicely original use of that old fantasy standby, the dragon.

Ancris is the chief city of a long-standing, aggressively imperialistic empire, with the “vassal state” of the Holt having held them off enough to carve out a small amount of self-rule (within the empire) under their political leader known as the Imperator.


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System Collapse: Just as entertaining as all the rest of the series

System Collapse by Martha Wells

The first thing to know about Martha Wells’ System Collapse is that if you can’t dredge up memories of its (chronological) predecessor, Network Effect, you’re going to want to refresh yourself either by a reread (fun enough) or skimming a few reviews, as System Collapse picks up directly afterward and really feels like it could have just been part of Network Effect (you know, had it been written at the time).


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Memory Reborn: We weren’t expecting a love story

Memory Reborn by David Walton

2023’s Memory Reborn is the third book in David Walton’s LIVING MEMORY series, which started with Living Memory and introduced us to individuals from an advanced society living during the Cretaceous Period, and who happened to be dinosaurs (maniraptors to be precise). Reading Memory Reborn, we were both eager to see how Walton resolved the many, increasingly complex problems the modern-day characters, both human and dinosaur, faced. Neither of us expected the love story to be the plot line that grabbed us the hardest.


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Next SFF Author: Ben Aaronovitch

We have reviewed 8263 fantasy, science fiction, and horror books, audiobooks, magazines, comics, and films.

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