New Books and ARCs, 5/18/15

I’m guessing you will find something to like in this stack of new books and ARCs. Am I right? Let me know in the comments!

52 Comments on “New Books and ARCs, 5/18/15”

  1. changterhune – Before you hear lies from Chang Terhune himself, we thought we’d tell you the truth: without us, his old action figures, he’d be nowhere. He loved science fiction from way back and began reading it at an early age, but it was through us that he acted it all out. That’s what led to the writing. He watched a lot of science fiction shows like Star Trek, U.F.O, and movies, too. But we were always there to do his bidding. And it’s like they say: you always forget about the little people on your way up. Oh, the 70’s and early 80’s with him were good times! He’d use these blocks and make all the crazy buildings for us to be in his stories. I gotta say the kid’s imagination was pretty damn fertile. Oh, he had friends, but they just weren’t into it like him. He was like the Lance Armstrong of action figures. And of science fiction. At first, when he began writing in the eighth grade, we didn’t mind. He still made time for us. And we knew that when he was holding us in his sweaty little hands and he got that far off look in his eye, he’d come back to burying us in the back yard or - god forbid! – blowing us up with firecrackers. But it was worth it for a part in one of those stories. We loved him for it. He kept us around even when we were minus a leg or two - or even a head. In that mind of his, he found a use for all of us. Then he discovered girls. October, 1986. It was like the end of the world. One day we’re standing in the middle of this building block creation he’d pretended was some marble city on a planet near Alpha Centauri and the next we were stuck in a box in the closet. Not even a “See ya later!” Nope, it was into the closet, then we heard some high-pitched girly-giggles then silence. We didn’t see him for years. We got word about him once in a while. Heard he took up writing, but it was crap like “The Breakfast Club” only with better music. We couldn’t believe it. Not Charlie. What happened to those aliens with heads he’d sculpted out of wax? Spaceships? Those complex plots? All gone. For what? You guessed it: Girls. Emotions. “Serious fiction.” I tell you, it was like hearing Elvis had left the building. During our two decade exile in the closet, we heard other things about him. He went to college. He wrote a lot, but not much he really liked. We knew it even then. It was like he didn’t dare write science fiction. Some of us had lost hope and just lay there. Others kept vigil, hoping for a day we didn’t dare speak about. Then we heard he’d stopped writing in 1996. Did he come to reclaim us? No. He took up music for ten years or so. He took up yoga. Once in a while, he’d visit us in the closet. But it was half-hearted. His mind was elsewhere. Then one day, he really did come back for us. One second we’re in the dark and the next thing we know we’re in a car headed for Massachusetts. Suddenly we got a whole shelf to ourselves out in broad daylight! Then he bought a bunch of others form some planet called Ebay. He’d just sit and stare at us with that old look. But why were we suddenly back in the picture? He had a wife now, who didn’t mind that he played with us. So what had happened? Turns out he’d never forgotten about those stories. He’d been thinking about all of us and the stories he’d made up and then remembered he’d been a writer once. From the shelf we could see him typing away. Before long he’s got a whole novel together! Then he’s working on another one. Word is there are two more in the planning stages! Some short stories, too! It’s good to see him using his imagination again. Its good to know he never abandoned us. He returned to his true love of science fiction. We hear the stories are pretty good. Someday we’ll get one of the cats to score us a copy of the manuscript. Man, it’s good to be out of the damn closet! --- I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me I'm smarter than you I'm harder than you I'm better than you I'm just raw I'm hotter than you More popular than you More clever than you And goshdarn it, people like me

    Hey what’s Game Of Thrones about?

  2. Johne Cook – Wisconsin, USA – Technical writer by day, creative writer and editor by night, I like prog rock, film noir, space opera, and the Green Bay Packers.
    Johne Cook


  3. I’m not saying I’d descend from your office ceiling ninja-like to snatch Armada and that Game of Thrones set, but I’m not NOT saying it, either.

  4. I’ve heard good things about “The Traitor Baru Cormorant”, and I read an excerpt from it once (very good book, well-written and all), but it seemed a little dark for me. I prefer happy endings where the good guys win–I know, old-fashioned, and I admit that a “classic” happy ending where everything’s perfect can get boring, but I just don’t like seeing racists, homophobes, or other bigots winning in fiction.

    And, well, the excerpt I read had the title character being basically broken by a bigoted evil empire, and I don’t like that. Good book, undeniably well-written, just not my taste.

  5. I just added to my calendar the purchase date of Armada so I could get it day 1. But now seeing this. I need to become a reviewer. Normally I see books here and add them to my list but that book. I needs it now. I have cravings!

  6. I’m reading The Shadow Revolution right now and enjoying it quite a bit. And ARMADA and BARSK were the ones highest up on my wishlist, until I looked up the premise of Last Song Before Night. Oooh.

  7. _Armada_! Definitely looking forward to that one. And I’ve read a few snippets of _A Long Time Until Now_, it’s looking interesting…

  8. lkeke35 – I am a Librarian Clerk in the Midwestern US. Its my job to know stuff (or at the very least, admit I know nothing, and go find out!) I love SciFi and Horror, Books, Movies, and television shows. I celebrate Blackness all year round. I am intolerant of intolerance.

    Looking forward to Zero World which sounds like James Bond with robots and also looking towards Shadow Revolution for a fun summer read.

  9. I’d be more tempted by Game of Thrones if I didn’t have a digital copy. (Book 3 was part of the reason I got an ereader. The paperback was physically painful to read at times.) But they would look nice on a shelf.

    I’d probably grab Armada too. I’ve meaning to check out something else by him.

  10. Ooo… Armada! I’m patiently waiting for it to come in at the library (I’m already on the hold list). BUT, I would welcome the chance to read it early.

  11. Changterhune, don’t worry about what ‘Game Of Thrones’ is about. Just don’t hire the author as a wedding planner…

  12. I’ve read the Weber and Martins, and I’ve heard of Michael Z. Williamson, though I don’t think I’ve read anything by him. The rest, as usual, I’ve never heard of.

  13. I just finished reading my copy of “Perdito,” – there is only so long you can make 70 pages last. I’d read it years ago in a multi-author anthology but couldn’t remember the title of the collection. It haunted me all this time, and I was so excited to see it. I know that it’s a long shot, but I keep hoping that, one day, Peter Straub will decide to dust it off and see what remarkable thing he can make of it.

  14. Mike McCorkle – Mike McCorkle is an emerging fiction writer and freelancer based out of Seattle. He recently spent a year living in Mexico instructing English and now works as a writing mentor and private instructor in the south Puget Sound. When he is not writing, Mike can found exploring the backwoods with his son Rylan and Labrador Betsy.
    Mike McCorkle

    Nice List!

  15. Alex Samaras – Nomad / Wanderer / Dreamer / Gamer / Feminist / Former HS Biology Teacher / Photographer / Nerd (I am also 5.67 light nanoseconds tall)
    Alex Samaras

    I enjoyed the heck out of David Weber’s “Shadow of Freedom”. It’s a great continuation of the “Shadow…” series part of his Honorverse. I continue to anxiously await for more, as the Honorverse is one of my favorite sci-fi universes and some of the best military sci-fi I’ve read. :)

  16. Wrong! Not that I’m looking at this stack like “eww”, just not having my interest super piqued by any of them (authors, titles, spine designs). TBF some of the books I’m intensely looking forward to recently had cover reveals, and I was neutral about them as well. Can’t have everything I guess!

    Though, isn’t Pathfinder a tabletop RPG? It has a novelization? Or is it that you receive rulebooks or whatnot as well?

  17. Wait, I thought these were new books. Shadow of Freedom came out in 2013. Is this a special edition, or do I totally misunderstand how these posts work?

    It’s a good book, by the way, but I would go back to On Basilisk Station (free) and do the Honor Harrington series properly. I too am waiting for more from the Honorverse, so for a second there I thought this heralded the arrival of a new entrant. Alas, no, I am just confused.

  18. Definitely Armada. Ready Player One was a LOT of fun.

    What, exactly, is that Game of Thrones two book set? I suspect strongly that it is NOT Book 6. :-)

    Is it an illustrated set? A foreign edition?

  19. Pathfinder Unchained! Fixed the Monk, corrected the disturbing habit of the Barbarian to die just for using his core class ability, and introduces a ton of the designers “house rules” for use in your campaign. Only spend a few minutes wit ha friends copy so far, but this is on my list to acquire.

  20. I want them all! Lol, just kidding. Or am I? I’ve been on a killer reading stint ever since Mother’s day weekend and have devoured 7 books that have crossed my path. I’m dying for more! :-) I fear my Kindle is going to spontaneously combust any moment now in hateful spite for me ignoring it for the last month and suddenly paying it so much attention lately. That’s what the library is for though, am I right!

  21. jbwhelan – Perspex Island – J. B. Whelan is the last scion of a clan of itinerant rug-beaters, who squandered their vast fortune on soda pop and Missile Command.

    Yay, Last Song Before Night! I’d be jealous but we have our own ARC waiting in the wings somewhere. :)

  22. Armada, definitely. Ready Player One was a blast, and it’s been 5 years. Seems a long time for a follow up, but given how detailed/plotted RP1 was I can guess why.

  23. @TW George:

    That’s the Subterranean Press limited edition of A Game of Thrones (split into 2 volumes because of size).

  24. Just curious, do you actually read ALL of the books that are sent to you? My father and daughter are exceptionally fast readers (their retention is amazing as well) so why not you? I can read fairly quickly, but not that fast. I wish!

  25. I’ve been looking forward to Armada for so long that I keep re-reading Ready Player One. It is interesting how much buzz Cline created with that novel. I hope that when I get my first novel finished, it creates a tenth of that amount of excitement. I also saw Williamson’s newest A long Time Until Now as a “You might like” advert on Amazon and I must say that I am intrigued by the story. I’m a big fan of alternate history/sci-fi. Kind of makes me think of Stirling’s Nantucket series. I am definitely looking forward to reading those two books.

  26. Got my copy of Armada this week too, and oh man, did that ever live up to expectations. Now the hard part – waiting until I can actually TALK ABOUT IT with other humans.

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