Category Archives: Book reviews

Book review: To Be Taught, if Fortunate by Becky Chambers

Becky Chambers has quickly become one of my favorite new authors, with her unconventional, humane view of science fiction settings.  Her characters are almost always likable, conflict is kept at a minimum, and the resolution is usually peaceful.  She looks … Continue reading

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Book review: The Prefect (Revelation Space 5) by Alastair Reynolds

The Prefect is one of the most popular books in the Revelation Space universe.  It rates marginally higher than the other books in the series on Goodreads, even though it didn’t amass as many reviews.  I think the positive reception … Continue reading

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Classic Review: Use of Weapons by Iain M. Banks

Many people consider this to be the best book from The Culture series.  Many more think it’s the most gut-wrenching book.  I am simply amazed at the depth of characters, quality of writing and a story structure that was very … Continue reading

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Modern Classic: The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi

The Windup Girl is essential reading for the early 21st century.  It deals with incredibly important themes in an accessible and very engaging fashion.  The characters are all well fleshed out, the story is plausible, and the setting is exotic … Continue reading

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Philip K. Dick vs. Hollywood, Part 2: Paycheck

A blockbuster movie directed by John Woo and starring no less than four A-list actors at the height of their popularity, in a movie based on Philip K. Dick’s short story.  What could go possibly wrong?  Well, a lot of … Continue reading

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Book Review: The Last Emperox (Interdependency 3) by John Scalzi

The Interdependency series is one of the rare trilogies where each sequel gets better than the previous book, and despite a single linear storyline, each novel has its own distinct character.  I was unimpressed with the first book, considered the … Continue reading

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Philip K. Dick vs. Hollywood, Part 1: Second Variety

Philip K. Dick’s work had been hot property for Hollywood studios for decades.  It’s not all that surprising to see why.  Most of the works that made it to film feature a novel concept, around which a skilled screenwriter can … Continue reading

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Book Review: Lines of Departure by Marko Kloos

Lines of Departure is the second book in the Frontlines series.  It is a solid piece of military science fiction, with plausible main characters and a story that goes beyond the usual futuristic action.  There is more character development than … Continue reading

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Book review: Fall; or, Dodge in Hell by Neal Stephenson

In a sense, Fall is a typical Stephenson novel.  It has all the hallmarks of an author who is constantly evolving, refining his style and endlessly polishing his prose, so that not a single word or comma is out of … Continue reading

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Classic Review: Anvil of Stars by Greg Bear

It is not too often that a sequel outshines its predecessor, but Anvil of Stars does it with style and aplomb.  It is expansive, imaginative and still very human.  It presents questions of morality and revenge, features believable character development … Continue reading

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