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Weekly Book Buzz: Nebula Award Nominees
The latest Mercy Thompson Novel
By Tim Janson
February 27, 2011
Who will win this Year’s Nebula Awards?
Kind of a quick column this week as I did not get time for any reviews. But one major news bit out this week is the announcement of the final Nebula Award nominees. See below.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America have released the final ballot for the 2010 Nebula Awards:
The Native Star, M.K. Hobson (Spectra)
The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms, N.K. Jemisin (Orbit UK; Orbit US)
Shades of Milk and Honey, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
Echo, Jack McDevitt (Ace)
Who Fears Death, Nnedi Okorafor (DAW)
Blackout/All Clear, Connie Willis (Spectra)
The Alchemist, Paolo Bacigalupi (Audible; Subterranean)
Iron Shoes, J. Kathleen Cheney (Alembical 2)
The Lifecycle of Software Objects, Ted Chiang (Subterranean)
The Sultan of the Clouds, Geoffrey A. Landis (Asimov’s 9/10)
Ghosts Doing the Orange Dance, Paul Park (F&SF 1-2/10)
The Lady Who Plucked Red Flowers beneath the Queen’s Window, Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Summer ’10)
Map of Seventeen, Christopher Barzak (The Beastly Bride)
The Jaguar House, in Shadow, Aliette de Bodard (Asimov’s 7/10)
The Fortuitous Meeting of Gerard van Oost and Oludara, Christopher Kastensmidt (Realms of Fantasy 4/10)
Plus or Minus, James Patrick Kelly (Asimov’s 12/10)
Pishaach, Shweta Narayan (The Beastly Bride)
That Leviathan, Whom Thou Hast Made, Eric James Stone (Analog 9/10)
Stone Wall Truth, Caroline M. Yoachim (Asimov’s 2/10)
‘‘Arvies’’, Adam-Troy Castro (Lightspeed 8/10)
‘‘How Interesting: A Tiny Man’’, Harlan Ellison® (Realms of Fantasy 2/10)
‘‘Ponies’’, Kij Johnson (Tor.com 1/17/10)
‘‘I’m Alive, I Love You, I’ll See You in Reno’’, Vylar Kaftan (Lightspeed 6/10)
‘‘The Green Book’’, Amal El-Mohtar (Apex 11/1/10)
‘‘Ghosts of New York’’, Jennifer Pelland (Dark Faith)
‘‘Conditional Love’’, Felicity Shoulders (Asimov’s 1/10)
Ray Bradbury Award
Doctor Who: ‘‘Vincent and the Doctor’’
How to Train Your Dragon
Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
Toy Story 3
New in Fantasy
Under Wraps (The Underworld Detection Agency Chronicles) Hannah Jayne [Kensington]
As a human immune to magic, Sophie Lawson can help everyone from banshee to zombie transition into normal, everyday San Francisco life. With a handsome werewolf as her UDA boss and a fashionista vampire for a roommate, Sophie knows everything there is to know about the undead, the unseen, and the uncanny. Until a rash of gruesome murders has demons and mortals running for cover, and Sophie finds herself playing sidekick to detective Parker Hayes. Dodging ranging bloodsuckers, bad-tempered faires, and love-struck trolls is one thing. But when Sophie discovers parker isn't what he seems, she's only got one chance to figure out whom to trust. Because an evil hiding in plain sight is closing in...and about to make one wisecracking human it means to ultimate power.
The Temple of Yellow Skulls: Abyssal Plague, Book 1 Don Bassingthwaite (Pandemonium) [Wizards of the Coast]
Imprisoned in the void of a ruined universe by vengeful gods, Tharizdun—the Chained God, the Elder Elemental Eye—shares his exile with the Progenitor, a pool of liquid crystal that is all that remains of the Abyss that destroyed his universe. Enter our heroes Albanon, Shara and Uldane—all three adventurers readers will know from The Mark of Nerath. They thought their quests were over and done with, but danger still burns like the embers of a smoldering fire in the tall grass. The Progenitor was locked safely away, guarded by Albanon’s dead master, but early on our heroes realize it was stolen and released in the presence of the green dragon Vestapalk as he fell at Shara’s sword. Now, alerted to the danger of the liquid crystal by a mysterious cleric who claims allegiance to an order that has protected the substance for time immemorial, they must go in search of the dragon’s body, to ensure his demise has not been exaggerated. What they discover has consequences that could change the world...
Sandstorm: A Forgotten Realms Novel Christopher Rowe [Wizards of the Coast]
A hero rises from the ranks of slaves! The genasi control almost all of Calimshan for their djinn overlords--all but a few outposts like the floating Island of the Free, where escaped slaves from Calimport's coliseum run their own brutal games. There, Cephas, a genasi with no memories of his past has spent his entire life fighting But one day a circus of misfits, lead by the crowlike Corvus Nightfeather appear and free Cephas--and for the first time Cephas can harness his inborn powers and control the ground beneath his feet.
River Marked (Mercy Thompson, Book 6) Patricia Briggs [Ace Hardcover]
Car mechanic Mercy Thompson has always known there was something different about her, and not just the way she can make a VW engine sit up and beg. Mercy is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. She's never known any others of her kind. Until now. An evil is stirring in the depths of the Columbia River-one that her father's people may know something about. And to have any hope of surviving, Mercy and her mate, the Alpha werewolf Adam, will need their help...
Oath of Fealty Elizabeth Moon [Del Rey]
Thanks to Paks’s courage, the long-vanished heir to the half-elven kingdom of Lyonya has been revealed as Kieri Phelan, a formidable mercenary who earned a title—and enemies—in the neighboring kingdom of Tsaia, where Prince Mikeli suddenly faces the threat of a coup. Acting swiftly, Mikeli strikes at the powerful family behind the attack: the Verrakaien, magelords steeped in death and evil. Mikeli’s survival—and that of Tsaia—depend on the only Verrakai whose magery is not tainted with innocent blood. Two kings stand at a pivotal point in the history of their worlds. For dark forces are gathering against them, knit in a secret conspiracy more sinister and far more ancient than they can imagine.
Late Eclipses (October Daye, Book 4) Seanan McGuire [DAW]
October "Toby" Daye is half-human, half-fae-the only changeling who's earned knighthood. But when someone begins targeting her nearest and dearest, it becomes clear that Toby is being set up to take the fall for everything that's happening.
A Hundred Words for Hate: A Remy Chandler Novel Thomas E. Sniegoski [Roc]
As an Angel, Remy possesses powers and skills only to be used if the situation calls for it. And the sudden reappearance of the Garden of Eden is just such a situation. Two opposing forces of immortals want the Key to the Gates of Eden, so Remy must turn for help to a fallen angel who is sometimes friend, sometimes foe-and always deadly.
Blackout (Cal Leandros, Book 6) Rob Thurman [Roc]
When half-human Cal Leandros wakes up on a beach littered with the slaughtered remains if a variety of hideous creatures, he's not that concerned. In fact, he can't remember anything-including who he is. And that's just the way his deadly enemies like it...
After Hours: Tales from Ur-Bar Joshua Palmatier [DAW]
Science fiction and fantasy readers have long shown an affinity for a good "bar story". Now some of today's most inventive scriveners have decided to tell their own tall tales-from an alewife's attempt to transfer the gods' curse to Gilgamesh, to Odin's decision to introduce Vikings to the Ur-Bar, from the Holy Roman Emperor's barroom bargain, to a demon hunter who may just have met his match in the ultimate magic bar, to a bouncer who discovers you should never let anyone in after hours in a world terrorized by zombies.
New In Sci-Fi
Hammer of the Emperor: An Imperial Guard Omnibus Lucien Soulban (Warhammer 40,000) [Games Workshop]
Across the war-torn galaxy, the Imperial Guard are a bastion against the enemies of mankind. From the punishing heat of Tallarn's deserts to the bonechilling tundras of Valhalla, these are soldiers who give their lives in the Emperor's name. Whether shoulder to shoulder or crushing their enemies in vast machines of war, they are unwavering in their devotion to duty. On a thousand stars, they repel the forces of Chaos and the foul xenos in an eternal conflict. This omnibus collects three tales of savage warfare and heroism in the frontline.
Invasion: Book One of the Secret World Chronicle Mercedes Lackey [Baen Hardcover]
The world had become used to the metahumans—people sometimes perfectly ordinary,but sometimes quite extraordinary in appearance—who mostly worked with their governments as high-powered peace officers, fighting crime, and sometimes fighting rogue metahumans who had become super-criminals. Then that comfortable world ended in just one terrifying day. Suddenly, all world governments were simultaneously attacked by soldiers in giant mecha robotic suits with the swastika symbol of the Third Reich on their metal arms. If these were Nazis, where had they been hiding since the end of World War II? And where had they gotten armor and weapons far in advance of anything on the planet? Weapons against which even the metahuman heroes seemed to be helpless.
False Horizon (Rogue Angel) Alex Archer [Gold Eagle]
A small Nepali man melts into shadows. A cutthroat crime lord is looking for a miraculous cure. And a map to an impossible dream and a mythic paradise is pointing the way. Archaeologist Annja Creed is in Katmandu, awash in its scents, sounds and liveliness. But this is no sightseeing trip. An old friend is in possession of a map that leads to a place that lies outside our world. But the map is known to one other—a vicious man who has Annja and her companions right where he wants them. Her hand forced, Annja sets out in search of the fabled Shangri-La—an expedition of danger and subversion.
New In Horror
An Embarrassment of Riches: A Novel of the Count Saint-Germain (St. Germain) Chelsea Quinn Yarbro [Tor]
More than two decades strong, the Saint-Germain cycle is one of the most compelling works of dark fantasy and horror of our age. Historically accurate, often involving key events or figures from throughout world history, these deeply emotional novels have a devoted readership. Each novel is written as a stand-alone and they are not chronologically consecutive, so readers may enter the saga with any book and move backward or forward in time as they choose, from Pharaonic Egypt to Paris in the 1700s, from the fall of the Roman Empire to World War II Europe.
In An Embarrassment of Riches, the vampire Count finds himself a virtual prisoner in the Court of Kunigunde in Bohemia in the 1200s. Rakoczy Ferncsi, as Saint-Germain is known, passes his days making jewels to delight Queen Kunigunde and trying not to become involved in the Court's intrigues. In this, the vampire fails. Handsome, apparently wealthy, and obviously unmarried, he soon finds himself being sexually blackmailed by Rozsa, an ambitious lady-in-waiting. If he does not satisfy her, she will denounce him to the priests and he'll be burned at the stake, resulting in his True Death. Despite his care, the vampire makes more than one enemy at the Bohemian Court, and by the end of An Embarrassment of Riches, the Count can see only one road to freedom...through death.