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by Stephen Deas
The fourth of Stephen Deas’ series, published in 2012, The Black Mausoleum picks up the story of Deas’ Dragon Realms sometime after the events of book three, The Order of the Scales. This is a wise choice as the epic conclusion to the first trilogy of books left such a scattering of story pieces it would have been a massive task to rebuild them and resurrect the epic scale.
Instead, Deas shifts and narrows his focus, delving into the underground and turning to the lives of the lowl...
by Alastair Reynolds
Poseidon's Wake is set in the same universe as Reynolds previous two Poseidon's Children novels (Blue Rembered Earth and On the Steel Breeze) but is written as an informal conclusion to the trilogy, a book that works equally well as a stand-alone story.
The story begins on Crucible, a distant planet from Earth that is now a colony for humankind. For Ndege Akinya Crucible has become a prison, held responsible for her part in the disaster that befell the transport vessel decades earli...
by Al Robertson
Today we are all too familiar with the assault of digital information and various forms of media which work hard to blur the definition of reality. Robertson has created a world where that idea is pushed to its disturbing conclusion. On the Station, where the remnants of humanity orbit a toxic world, the rusted and mechanical environment is overlaid with the virtual world of the weave. This shiny facade makes life tolerable for the humans as they live under the benevolent protection of the Pa...
by Brandon Sanderson
Legion: Skin Deep, the sequel to Brandon Sanderson’s 2012 novella Legion, sees one-man army Stephen Leeds recruited to find the body of a recently deceased scientist who had been experimenting with storing data in human cells. It’s crucial research and Leeds’ employer (Yol, an old acquaintance) isn't the only one after it. The investigator, along with the 47 hallucinations that live in his head, is soon caught in the crossfire between rival companies also on the trail....
by David A Goodman
The genuine autobiography of one of the bravest, most dashing and heroic starship captains to ever bodly-go into the depths of space. You may be pleased to know that this Kirk is the real one, not the imposter who has more recently been seen in the latest films. This Kirk doesn't get command of the starship 30 minutes after joining starfleet and we don't get gratuitously soppy scenes from Spock either.
This is the real, lense-flare-less, deal.
It's been penned by David A G...
by AG Wyatt
While most post-apocalyptic novels focus on destruction brought on humankind (or occasionally robotkind), the disaster in Moonfall is much more natural. The Moon has indeed fallen and caused widespread destruction across the globe. The book picks up 20 years after this earth-shattering event and follows lone survivor Noah who trudges through the wasteland trying to avoid what humanity has now become.
Perhaps ineviatably he is caught and drawn into a conflict between two rival gangs,...
by Stephen Deas
The third of Stephen Deas’ series, published in 2011, The Order of the Scales continues the story of the Dragon Realms. Each book picks up immediately from where the last left off, solving the requisite cliff hanger with yet more twists and turns of scheming between the kings, queens, princes, dragons, alchemists and blood mages battling for power.
The titles of Deas’ series are a little bit arbitrary. Each is a feature of the book, but not as prominently so as you might imagine. Mo...
by Brandon Sanderson
If you thought a book written on a plane might be a bit rough around the edges - a few plot holes, perhaps, or precious little scene setting - think again, because when Brandon Sanderson does it, the result is nothing less than first class.
The celebrated author’s 2011 novella Legion (reprinted this year by Gollancz) is somewhat Butcheresque, offering a more reluctant Harry Dresden in the form of Stephen Leeds, a "sane" man who uses a host of talented hallucinations (his "legion") t...
by James C Stewart
A parallel world action drama with everyone urgently following mission briefings and investigating crimes, Asks the Dream pitches the reader into the centre of a grey shaded struggle where the characters feel cleaner than the corporations they are taking orders from.
When it suits her, Charity is a school girl, but when it doesn’t she picks up assassination contracts with her drug fuelled entourage, operating under the instructions of ‘the Colonel’.
by M. E. Vaughan
Establishing a new fantasy story of weight and significance is difficult these days. The genre is crowded with epic quests, adventures, villains and heroes.
The Sons of Thestian by M.E. Vaughan is fantasy tale by a talented writer that attempts to draw our attention. The opening action sequences are pacey and written with thought, drawing the reader in without the habitual exposition crawl many writers might wander into. We learn of the Nightwatch through Jionathan’s experience of t...
by Chuck Wendig
Star Wars was a huge part of my childhood, the original was the first film I ever saw at the Cinema and for a period I watched the film (and the two proceeding) pretty much every day - at one point I could recite the whole script if you'd asked me to. Must have driven my poor mother to distraction. I had most of the toy figures, the AT-AT, X-Wing, Tie Fighter, ewok village, Jabba and his music band, and of course the Millennium Falcon. In times before digital entertainment those toys were pri...
by Stephen Deas
The first of Stephen Deas’ dragon series and published in 2009, The Adamantine Palace sets the stage of scheming between the noble factions and royal houses. Prince Jehal, Queen Sheriza, Queen Zafira, Speaker Hyram and others battle for power.
Like many fantasy works, Deas’ society does appear top-heavy to begin with. The main focus of writing is on the noble classes as they wing across the map to each other’s eyries trying to score political points. At this stage, the dragons thems...
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The Three-body Problem by Liu Cixin
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