The Hell of It February 25, 2015 The Hell of It Peter Orullian What will he wager? Schrödinger’s Gun February 18, 2015 Schrödinger’s Gun Ray Wood Maybe in some other timeline it would have gone smooth. Acrobatic Duality February 11, 2015 Acrobatic Duality Tamara Vardomskaya The two of her are perfectly synchronized. The Language of Knives February 4, 2015 The Language of Knives Haralambi Markov They share the rites of death, and grief.
From The Blog
March 2, 2015
A Ranking of 1980s Fantasy That Would Please Crom Himself!
Leah Schnelbach
February 27, 2015
Goodbye, Mr. Nimoy — What Spock Meant to One Geeky 12-Year-Old Girl
Emily Asher-Perrin
February 26, 2015
Introducing the Star Trek The Original Series Rewatch
Keith DeCandido
February 23, 2015
Oh No, She Didn’t: The Strong Female Character, Deconstructed
Ilana C. Myer
February 20, 2015
Evil Eighties: The Paperback Horrors of Lisa Tuttle
Grady Hendrix
Feb 25 2015 4:00pm

Fiction Affliction: Genre-Benders for March

new releases genre MarchTwenty books defy genrification in March, including creepalicious new anthologies edited by Ellen Datlow and Mark Teppo, and new series starts from Carrie Patel (Buried Life), Ian Tregillis (The Alchemy Wars), Alan Smale (Clash of Eagles), and Gail Carriger (The Custard Protocol).

Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and “genre-benders.” Keep track of them all here. Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.

[Read about this month’s releases.]

Feb 25 2015 3:00pm

I Know My Value. Agent Carter: “Valediction”

Agent Carter: Valediction

I’m having a hard time remembering the first 30 minutes or so of the Agent Carter finale “Valediction.” The really gripping stuff, the takedown of Faustus and Dottie and the showdown between Peggy and Captain America’s emotional shadow doesn’t happen until near the end, and until that happens the show isn’t so much about Agent Carter as it is about Agent Carter’s Friend Howard.

How did we get here? Let us re-select the episode on Hulu and part the veil of time.

[Read more]

Feb 25 2015 2:00pm

The Great Divide: Our Endless Numbered Days by Claire Fuller

Our Endless Numbered Days Claire Fuller

Kids. They’ll believe almost anything if the “truth” comes from someone they trust. And why wouldn’t they? The world is wide and full of wonders we expect our children to accept without question. In that sense, the thought that a big ol’ bunny rabbit brings them chocolate eggs each Easter isn’t much less credulous than the idea that a thing called gravity keeps them from flying into the sky.

But there’s a big difference between a little white lie told with the best of intentions and the apocalyptic fiction Peggy Hillcoat’s father passes off as a fact at the start of Claire Fuller’s disarmingly dark, if indisputably beautiful debut.

[Read More]

Feb 25 2015 1:30pm

Afternoon Roundup: Channing Tatum Three-Wolf Jupiter is Everything

Channing Tatum three wolf tee shirt Jupiter Ascending

Unfortunately, there’s not much Jupiter Ascending merchandise out there, but we would proudly wear or display this brilliant parody (by fan Stefanie via society6) of the iconic Three-Wolf Moon poster. You can snatch it up in print or tank top form. While you’re at it, read this great piece from The Daily Dot on why Tumblr is Jupiter Ascending’s true fandom.

Afternoon Roundup brings you Godzilla peeking into your hotel room, Matt Fraction and Kelly Sue DeConnick on your TV, and your first glimpse of more Frozen!

[Read more]

Feb 25 2015 1:00pm

Rereading Melanie Rawn: The Star Scroll, Chapters 27 and 28

Melanie Rawn Dragon Prince Star Scroll rereadWelcome to the weekly Wednesday reread of The Star Scroll! This week we have a battle that goes in directions no one expected. Several plot lines come to an end, a number of secrets are finally revealed, and we get a glimpse of what’s likely to happen next.

Chapter 27

So This Happens: Sioned and Rohan tuck Pol into bed and discuss what just happened with Pol and Andry. They don’t like Andry’s reaction to Pol’s interference. There’s going to be conflict. That frightens them.

[Read More]

Feb 25 2015 12:30pm

Harrison Squared Sweepstakes!

Harrison Squared by Daryl GregoryWe've given you an excerpt from Daryl Gregory’s Harrison Squared, out on March 24th from Tor Books, and now we want to send you a galley!

Harrison Harrison—H2 to his mom—is a lonely teenager who's been terrified of the water ever since he was a toddler in California, when a huge sea creature capsized their boat, and his father vanished. One of the “sensitives” who are attuned to the supernatural world, Harrison and his mother have just moved to the worst possible place for a boy like him: Dunnsmouth, a Lovecraftian town perched on rocks above the Atlantic.

On Harrison's first day at school, his mother, a marine biologist, disappears at sea. Harrison must attempt to solve the mystery of her accident, which puts him in conflict with a strange church, a knife-wielding killer, and the Deep Ones, fish-human hybrids that live in the bay. It will take all his resources—and an unusual host of allies—to defeat the danger and find his mother.

Check for the rules below!

[Read more]

Feb 25 2015 12:15pm

Tor Books Has Chosen the London In Which It Would Prefer to Live

Darker Shade of Magic Tor Books

And in classically individualistic fashion, the Tor Books staff has not chosen just one, but four different Londons to call home. The question was prompted by this week’s release of A Darker Shade of Magic, V.E. Schwab’s newest novel, in which being a magician in London means having access to different types of London.

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, ruled by a mad King George and inhabited by the Tor folks in the back middle of the picture. Then there’s Red London, where life and magic are revered, where the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire, and where’s Creative Director and Associate Publisher Irene Gallo hails from. (She’s the hooded being on the far left.)

[And then there’s the others...]

Feb 25 2015 12:00pm

Malazan Reread of the Fallen: Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter Four

Ian C Esslemont Orb Sceptre Throne Malazan rereadWelcome back to the Malazan Reread of the Fallen! Every post will start off with a summary of events, followed by reaction and commentary by your hosts Bill and Amanda (with Amanda, new to the series, going first), and finally comments from readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter four of Ian Cameron Esslemont’s Orb Sceptre Throne.

A fair warning before we get started: We’ll be discussing both novel and whole-series themes, narrative arcs that run across the entire series, and foreshadowing. Note: The summary of events will be free of major spoilers and we’re going to try keeping the reader comments the same. A spoiler thread has been set up for outright Malazan spoiler discussion.

[Read More]

Feb 25 2015 11:30am

Rocket Talk Episode 44: James L. Sutter and Mordicai Knode

Pathfinder Tales

James L. Sutter, the managing editor at Paizo Publishing, and Mordicai Knode, a National Accounts Coordinator for Macmillian, visit Rocket Talk to discuss the Pathfinder Tales novels and their new arrangement with Tor Books. The conversation looks at the nature of series fiction, how tie-in fiction works (or doesn’t work), and what Pathfinder is all about.

[Listen Now!]

Feb 25 2015 11:00am

Of Masks and Mary Sues: Kushiel’s Chosen, Part 1

Kushiel's Reread Kushiel's Chosen Jacqueline CareyWe’re continuing Kushiel’s Reread with Kushiel’s Chosen, the perennial middle book: It has to recapture the magic of the original, while upping its stakes without getting ludicrous. In many ways, Chosen tracks Phèdre nó Delaunay’s development into a better Servant of Naamah, spy, and peer of the realm. In other ways, the book is the weakest of the trilogy by dint of being a bridge between the naïve girl of Kushiel’s Dart and the worldly woman of Kushiel’s Avatar. But first, let’s find out what happens when Phèdre rededicates herself to serving and spying!

We’re going to get spoilery—because it turns out there is a ton of foreshadowing for later books and trilogies—so feel free to do the same in the comments. As Shemhazai said, all knowledge is worth having. And as he might have said… Reread as thou wilt!

[Read more]

Feb 25 2015 10:00am

Pull List: Sex Criminals

Can this whole intro just be the lyrics to “Fat Bottomed Girls”? No? Fine. In that case, let’s talk about sex, baby. Specifically, sex involving bank-robbing, library-saving, relationship-ruining criminals as written by the kind of comics creators who do great work in the mainstream and off-the-wall-awesome work at Image Comics. This is the story of a fledgling relationship, of two young people struggling with the whole “adulthood” thing, of people who can stop time, of sex scientists and sex cops and sex criminals, of the ways we live and love and screw and screw up. So put down that street muffin, brimpers. This is about to get weird.*

*But not that weird. This review is totally SFW. Unless you click the links. So maybe wait to do that until you get home. Ok? Ok.

[“Anyway, so… Freddie Mercury huh?”]

Feb 25 2015 9:00am
Original Story

The Hell of It

Peter Orullian

Some heroes don't carry blades or go to war. Some heroes are fathers desperately trying not to fail their sons.

Like some other stories published on, “The Hell of It” contains scenes and situations some readers will find upsetting and/or repellent. [—The Editors]


This novelette was acquired and edited for by senior editor Claire Eddy.

[Read “The Hell of It” by Peter Orullian]

Feb 25 2015 8:00am

Morning Roundup: Where Does Tony Stark Get Those Wonderful Toys?

Tony Stark fixing his Batmobile

Photographer Hrjoe has created some great scenes with his superhero toys, but our favorite has to be getting to see Tony Stark tuning up his awesome Batmobile toy. You can see more of his work here! But a few of these are slightly NSFW, so exercise caution.

Morning Roundup brings you the happy fate of a Batsuit, a farewell to Parks, Recreation, and The Greatest Mini-Horse of All Time, and reading suggestions from SF Signal!

[Plus, the return of an American Hero.]

Feb 24 2015 5:30pm

The Exile Sweepstakes!

In The Exile by C.T. Adams, Brianna Hai runs an occult shop that sells useless trinkets to tourists—and real magic supplies to witches and warlocks. The magical painting that hangs in Brianna's apartment is the last portal between the fae and human worlds.

A shocking magical assault on her home reveals to Brianna that her father, High King Liu of the Fae, is under attack. With the help of her gargoyle, Pug, her friend David, and Angelo, a police detective who doesn't believe in magic, Brianna recovers what was stolen from her and becomes an unwilling potential heir to the throne.

We want to send you a galley now, so check for the rules below!

[Read more]

Feb 24 2015 5:00pm

Persona (Excerpt)

Genevieve Valentine

Persona Genevieve Valentine In a world where diplomacy has become celebrity, a young ambassador survives an assassination attempt and must join with an undercover paparazzo in a race to save her life, spin the story, and secure the future of her young country in Persona, a near-future political thriller from Genevieve Valentine—publishing March 10th from Saga Press.

When Suyana, Face of the United Amazonia Rainforest Confederation, is secretly meeting Ethan of the United States for a date that can solidify a relationship for the struggling UARC, the last thing she expected was an assassination attempt.

Daniel, a teen runaway turned paparazzi out for his big break, witnesses the first shot hit Suyana, and before he can think about it, he jumps into the fray, telling himself it’s not altruism, it’s the scoop. Now Suyana and Daniel are on the run—and if they don’t keep one step ahead, they’ll lose it all.

[Read an Excerpt]

Feb 24 2015 4:00pm

The Skin I’m In: Touch by Claire North

Claire North Touch

Fresh from the success of The First Fifteen Live of Harry August, Claire North—the second pseudonym (after Kate Griffin) of prose prodigy Catherine Webb—returns with Touch, a tremendously well-travelled science-fictional thriller that’s as disturbing as its predecessor was delightful.

From word one we follow an ancient entity christened Kepler by its enemies; a continuous consciousness of some sort that at the moment of its first host’s murder moved—much to its own amazement—into its murderer’s mind, and took over his body to boot. Several so-called “skins” later, Kepler has a basic understanding of its situation; of its ability, in particular, to essentially possess a person—any person—with but a touch.

“I walk through people’s lives and I steal what I find,” Kepler confesses. “Their bodies, their time, their money, their friends, their lovers, their wives—I’ll take it all, if I want to.”

[Read More]

Feb 24 2015 3:30pm

Gritty Power/Rangers Fan Film is a Wonderfully Dark Reboot

Power/Rangers Joseph Kahn Katee Sackhoff James van der Beek

Last year, Battlestar Galactica’s Katee Sackhoff teased a secret project that many assumed was her playing Carol Danvers in Marvel’s Captain Marvel movie. While fans still wait on that casting, it turns out that Sackhoff has been spending her time recently playing a gritty, grown-up take on many Millennials’ childhood female role model: Kimberly, the Pink Ranger.

While the Power Rangers reboot chugs along, Joseph Kahn, Adi Shankar, and James Van Der Beek have enlisted Sackhoff and other talents to create the wonderfully dark fan film Power/Rangers. The teenagers with attitude are now the adults with PTSD, living in a world where an uneasy truce with the Machine Empire has combined humans with machines and has torn apart the Power Rangers.

[Watch Power/Rangers]

Feb 24 2015 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “What You Leave Behind”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on What You Leave Behind“What You Leave Behind”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Allan Kroeker
Season 7, Episode 25
Production episode 40510-575
Original air date: June 2, 1999
Stardate: unknown

Station log: It’s the eve of the big push into Dominion territory. Bashir wakes up with Dax, the pair having spent the night together, with the inevitable reference to how far down her spots go. O’Brien is nervously making sure Keiko has everything under control with the family (which of course she does), and we find out that he’s received an offer to teach at Starfleet Academy when the war’s over, which he’s going to accept (though Molly is dubious about whether or not he’s really accepted given that he hasn’t actually told Bashir about it). Sisko ministers to his pregnant wife, promising to come home to her, and then Jake walks him to the Defiant. Odo walks with Worf to the Defiant, both expressing the hope that they find Kira on Cardassia.


Feb 24 2015 2:30pm

Fiction Affliction: March Releases in Science Fiction

Twenty new releases teleport to the science fiction shelves this month, with a new series edited by George R.R. Martin and Gardner Dozois and new series additions from, among others, Peter Liney (Detainee Trilogy), David Drake and John Lambshead (Citizen), Kathy Reichs and Brendan Reichs (Virals), Christian Cantrell (Containment), and Nicholas Sansbury Smith (Orbs). Prefer your SF to be YA. You’re in luck this month…again.

Fiction Affliction details releases in science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, paranormal romance, and “genre-benders.” Keep track of them all here. Note: All title summaries are taken and/or summarized from copy provided by the publisher.

[Read about this month’s releases.]

Feb 24 2015 2:00pm

Time Flies, and So Do Heads! Sleepy Hollow: “Tempus Fugit”

Sleepy Hollow Tempus Fugit

So. There was a scene, in Season One, that made me love this show. It was a scene in “The Sin Eater” (Remember? When we met Henry?) and in it Ichabod agreed to poison himself for the greater good, and tried to get Abbie to leave him, so she’d be spared watching him die. But she refused to let him die alone, and held his hand, with every intention of staying there to the end. This was a great moment for many reasons: the show opened itself up in a way to see the depth of love and trust between these two characters, and allowed you to imagine an entire world around them in the process.

Last night’s episode, “Tempus Fugit,” gave us another moment like that.

[The show is finally good again!]