The Ways of Walls and Words April 15, 2015 The Ways of Walls and Words Sabrina Vourvoulias Can the spirit truly be imprisoned? Ballroom Blitz April 1, 2015 Ballroom Blitz Veronica Schanoes Can't stop drinking, can't stop dancing, can't stop smoking, can't even die. Dog March 25, 2015 Dog Bruce McAllister "Watch the dogs when you're down there, David." The Museum and the Music Box March 18, 2015 The Museum and the Music Box Noah Keller History is rotting away, just like the museum.
From The Blog
April 17, 2015
Spring 2015 Anime Preview: The Hellish Life of a Pizza Delivery Boy
Kelly Quinn
April 16, 2015
The Disney Read-Watch: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Mari Ness
April 15, 2015
Recasting The Rocky Horror Picture Show
Stubby the Rocket
April 15, 2015
The 10 Strangest Transports in Non-Driving Games
N. Ho Sang and Peter Tieryas
April 14, 2015
An Open Letter to HBO from House Greyjoy
Theresa DeLucci
Mon
Apr 13 2015 9:00am

Five Books in Which Special Ops Encounter Very Weird Things

Joe Ledger Predator One

I love weird science. I love weird action. I love weird characters. And I like smartass humor. Those things all conspired within me to make me create Joe Ledger, the hero of my ongoing series of action thrillers. The series launched with Patient Zero, in which Joe, a former Baltimore cop is recruited by a secret government agency to fight terrorists who have a weaponize prion disease that turns people into zombies. The latest in the series, Predator One, deals with terrorists who hack civilian, commercial and military drones and turn them into weapons of mass destruction.

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Mon
Apr 13 2015 8:00am

Morning Roundup: Leap Into This A Darker Shade of Magic Fan Art

A Darker Shade of Magic fan art Victoria Ying V.E. Schwab

Like its protagonist Kell, we find ourselves jumping into the parallel universes of V.E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic. First, Tor Books divided itself according to which Londons people would live in. And now Schwab herself has shared this amazing fan art by Victoria Ying. (You’ve got Kell and Lila, above, plus several other characters.) “If A Darker Shade of Magic ever gets a graphic novel, please just let it look like this,” Schwab tweeted. And then Ying sent her a care package! Too cute.

Morning Roundup includes a classic being rebooted, a classic’s sequel finally starting to be developed, and three classic video games mashed up into one amazing playing experience.

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Sat
Apr 11 2015 10:30am

Pathfinder Prize Pack Sweepstakes!

Today is International TableTop Day, and we want to send one lucky winner a pack of cool Pathfinder prizes to celebrate!

One winner will receive a copy of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook, The Inner Sea World Guide, and a deck of GameMastery Plot Twist Cards. We’ll also include galleys of the two upcoming Pathfinder Tales novels from Tor Books: Lord of Runes by Dave Gross, out on June 2nd, and Liar’s Island by Tim Pratt, out on August 25th!

Comment in the post to enter!

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A purchase does not improve your chances of winning. Sweepstakes open to legal residents of 50 United States and D.C., and Canada (excluding Quebec). To enter, comment on this post beginning at 10:30 AM Eastern Time (ET) on April 11. Sweepstakes ends at 12:00 PM ET on April 15. Void outside the United States and Canada and where prohibited by law. Please see full details and official rules here. Sponsor: Tor.com, 175 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10010.

Fri
Apr 10 2015 3:00pm

The Stargate Rewatch: SG-1 Season Three

Stargate SG-1, Season 3

Stargate SG-1 Season 3
Executive producers: Jonathan Glassner & Brad Wright, Michael Greenburg, Richard Dean Anderson
Original air dates: June 25, 1999 – March 10, 2000

Mission briefing. After seeing through Hathor’s deception, SG-1 manages to permanently stop the Goa’uld, with the help of a Tok’ra agent, who sacrifices her life. Another Goa’uld is discovered on Earth, having stayed on the planet and keeping his head down as a cult leader: Seth. SG-1, with Jacob Carter, dispatches him as well.

[Well, apparently we said hello, insulted each other, and broke for recess.]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 2:48pm

Orbit Books Announces Two New Ann Leckie Novels!

Ancillary Justice Ann Leckie new books Orbit BooksFans of Ann Leckie who are sad to see her Imperial Radch trilogy ending this year will be delighted to learn that Orbit Books has purchased two more novels from Leckie!

The first, tentatively scheduled for release in fall 2017, will take place in the same universe as Ancillary Justice (which won the Hugo, Nebula, and Arthur C. Clarke Awards) and its follow-ups Ancillary Sword and Ancillary Mercy.

The second will be an unrelated science fiction novel. Both will be published simultaneously in the United States and the UK.

[Read more]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 2:00pm

Afternoon Roundup: SMILE!

Jared Leto Joker camera photo Suicide Squad

When David Ayer recently posted a photo of the Suicide Squad cast, fans wondered where the hell was Jared Leto? Ayer responded with this, the closest thing we’ve seen yet to Leto in-character as the Joker. As Entertainment Weekly points out, it seems to be an homage to the cover for The Killing Joke.

Afternoon Roundup brings you a horror story about the Apple Watch, your biggest Internet nightmare coming to the silver screen, and the Left Hand of Darkness radio play!

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Fri
Apr 10 2015 1:30pm

Listen to the Fantastic Fiction at KGB Podcast!

KGB Bar

Fantastic Fiction at KGB is a monthly reading series that has been held at the famous KGB Bar in Manhattan since the late 1990s, and is currently hosted by Tor.com consulting editor Ellen Datlow and author Matthew Kressel. Upcoming readers include great SFF writers like Wesley Chu, David Edison, and N.K. Jemisin, and past readers include luminaries like Kelly Link and Jeff VanderMeer.

If you’re not able to drop by the Lower East Side, though, you can listen to all of the readings on the Fantastic Fiction at KGB Podcast, which includes stories from Genevieve Valentine, Mary Robinette Kowal, Sofia Samatar, and many more! Next week’s reading on April 15th features Ken Liu and James Morrow, and you can find the list of all readers through November below!

[Read more]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 1:00pm

Evil Eighties: Spectre by Stephen Laws

For 1980s horror fiction aficionados like me, there’s nothing quite as satisfying as when you buy an old paperback based solely on its promising cover art and then, upon actually reading the book, that the contents deliver on said promise. Now, ironically, the photo-realistic cover for Spectre, a 1987 Tor paperback by Stephen Laws —featuring some young denizens of that amazing decade in various stages of disappearance—doesn’t exactly scream “Horror! Terror! Dismemberment!” like so many others did back then.

That’s precisely what struck me about the cover, thanks to the talents of J.K. Potter, a renowned artist who’s illustrated countless volumes of horror fiction: its utter lack of tacky tasteless imagery (aside from an oversize sweater or two). I was drawn to Spectre because it promised, perhaps, quiet chilling scares, rather than the full-on assault of so much ’80s horror, often done with all the finesse of Leatherface working his saw. Did the novel deliver on its promise of quiet horror? Actually, no: Laws’ novel is filled with tentacles and teeth, torn limbs and slashed throats, abhorrent rituals and hungry gods… but it’s all done with the finesse of Hannibal Lecter preparing you dinner.

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Fri
Apr 10 2015 12:00pm

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

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 Tor.com readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter fifteen 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.

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Fri
Apr 10 2015 11:30am

“Killed! Killed! Killed!” Key & Peele Recap All the Deaths in Game of Thrones

Key and Peele Game of Thrones recap video

It is coldblooded up in Westeros—Game of Thrones is killin’ people left and right. That comes as no surprise, but what is an unexpected delight is seeing comedy duo Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele reenact the series’ shocking and grisly deaths in an amazing video recap.

[“Khaleesi straight up with them dragons!”]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 11:10am

What if Petunia Dursley Had Been a Good Person? This Harry Potter Alternate Universe Will Break Your Heart

Harry Potter, Petunia Dursley, Fiona Shaw

Imagining alternate realities for popular stories is par for the course in fandom, but some of them inevitably hit harder than others. We came across this AU version of Harry Potter, where Tumblr user ink-splotch postulated what the saga might have been like if Petunia Dursley had found some love in her heart for little Harry, and left Vernon to raise her two boys on her own.

The result is beautiful, but it hurts so much.

[She took him in and fed him and changed him and got him his shots, and she hated his eyes up until the day she looked at the boy and saw her nephew, not her sister’s shadow.]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 11:00am

The Fake is a Lie in Ex Machina

Ex Machina movie review Domhnall Gleeson Oscar Isaac Alicia Vikander Alex Garland

Early on in Alex Garland’s tense, darkly funny, sci-fi psychological thriller Ex Machina, coder Caleb (Domnhall Gleeson) keenly points out that he hasn’t actually been summoned to his boss Nathan’s (Oscar Isaac) secluded mountain home to perform a Turing test. The basis of that test, you see, is that the examiner does not know that the subject is actually a machine. In this case, Nathan’s android prototype Ava (Alicia Vikander) is clearly inhuman, with her face and hands covered in synthetic skin but her insides laid bare in a mix of metal mesh and fiberglass components. Nathan’s aim is not to deceive Caleb as to Ava’s true form.

This is the only honest moment in the movie. The rest of this taut cautionary tale has the characters and the audience constantly sifting through layers of trickery and manipulation—from both humans and machines. The growing dread we share with Caleb is tempered by sweet, witty, and truly “wtf” moments, little pockets of humanity that only serve to further convince us that everyone is human... or everyone is a machine... or both. While Ex Machina isn’t perfect, as Garland’s directorial debut, it’s incredibly polished.

[Read more]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 10:00am

The Dragonlance Chronicles Reread: Dragons of Autumn Twilight, Chapters 9 and 10

Dragons of Autumn Twilight Dragonlance

Last week we fought lizard-monster things and the party demonstrated a—rather fabulous—lack of strategy. But hey, Raistlin blew things up, so who’s complaining?

Will this week see more fireworks? Or are we going to return to the “old ways” of getting lost in the woods? Maybe a bit of both...

As always, we’re going to keep the reread post spoiler-free, but the comments are open to any and all discussion, so proceed with caution!

[Read More]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 9:00am

Listen to 13 International Versions of the Game of Thrones Theme!

Bran Game of Thrones headphones

Soundcloud user Moslem Rasouli has composed a Persian version of the Game of Thrones theme song, and we can’t stop listening to the sounds of Westeros as played on the traditional Iranian tonbak and kamancheh. It turns out the Game of Thrones theme, originally written by Iranian-German composer Ramin Djawadi, has been reinterpreted and performed everywhere from Spain to Turkey to Australia, and we’ve rounded up some of our favorite versions to listen to while we wait for the premiere of the fifth season on Sunday night.

Check out thirteen international versions of the Game of Thrones theme below, and tell us which one you like best (or would like to see next) in the comments!

[Read more]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 8:00am

Morning Roundup: The Happiest Suicide Squad You Ever Did See

Suicide Squad cast table read Will Smith Margot Robbie

Even though Jared Leto/The Joker is absent from this Suicide Squad cast photo (tweeted by David Ayer), the rest of the cast seems to be having plenty of fun at the table read. And look! Three previously unannounced cast members.

Morning Roundup giggles over the best Avengers: Age of Ultron tie-in product and shivers all over again over True Detective season 2.

[Read more]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 4:00pm

The Harry Potter Reread: Rewatching The Goblet of Fire Film

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

It’s funny, because this movie has a… rocky relationship with Potter fandom. Some of the reasons why are warranted, others I’m not so sure on. But what’s odd to me on rewatching this time around is that the Goblet of Fire film was clearly trying to recreate Cuarón’s magic from PoA, and as a result has many of the same flaws; it has some beautiful added/altered moments and snappy dialogue, but the plot is a chopped up mess of a thing.

Of course, people are generally shouting over the color of Hermione’s dress too loudly to get that conversation in.

[Introducing Shouty Dumbledore!]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 3:15pm

Salvaging Darkness and SFF Spirit Animals: Highlights from Wesley Chu’s Reddit AMA

Wesley Chu Reddit AMA highlights best answers

Kilimanjaro-climbing, ninja-fighting author Wesley Chu always makes for a wonderfully amusing Reddit AMA subject. Last time, he traded whiskey for “tuckerizing” a reader (i.e., making them a character who will most likely get killed off). This time around, he recalled his worst acting gig (it included Kanye West) and discussed the merits of the bathrobe as a “standard author uniform” that allows the wearer to “Jedi up” at a moment’s notice.

Chu also discussed the dark inspiration behind his new book Time Salvager (out July 7 from Tor Books), which follows “chronman” James Griffin-Mars, who must travel back in time to recover treasures and valuables from Earth before major accidents. The twist is, James can’t change the tragedies of the past that have made Earth the toxic landscape it is today.

[Read on for the highlights and dark insights of Chu’s AMA!]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 2:30pm

Afternoon Roundup: Look at This Thing!

first look The Thing Fantastic Four reboot Jamie Bell

Whether or not this is the coolest thing you’ll see today, it’s the coolest Thing we’ve seen so far. We’re talking, of course, about the Fantastic Four character, which looked so fake in the first run of these movies that we try to block it out of our memories (along with Captain America shouting, “Flame on!”). For the reboot, Josh Trank had Jamie Bell go the mo-cap route of his predecessors Andy Serkis and especially Mark Ruffalo—and it looks pretty great.

Afternoon Roundup mourns a Twin Peaks without David Lynch but appreciates Louie replaced with a certain Wookiee.

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Thu
Apr 9 2015 2:00pm

Remembering the Future in Ken Liu’s The Grace of Kings

The Grace of Kings Ken LiuThere’s a famous quote from George Santayana that says, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” It’s often used to emphasize the importance of cultural history. If you don’t know where you come from, how can you know where you’re going? It’s a powerful, if exceedingly trite, message. But, it rings true.

Unfortunately, the past also possesses deep nostalgia, which is too often seen through rose colored glasses. How often have we held up some period in history as the ideal? And how often do we see this reflected in fiction? It’s interesting then when something like The Grace of Kings comes along, in which Ken Liu attempts to reflect on history, to almost wallow in it, while at the same time confronting all of its baggage and remembering it not as it was, but as he would like it to be.

Although that’s rather getting ahead of things a bit.

[Read more...]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 1:30pm

Revealing the Cover for Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn Book The Bands of Mourning

We’re thrilled to show off the cover for Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn book, The Bands of Mourning, coming in January 2016, right after Shadows of Self, the second book in the Wax and Wayne series.

We've already showed off the great Chris McGrath cover for Shadows of Self, now take a look at the next installment in the series!

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