This Chance Planet October 22, 2014 This Chance Planet Elizabeth Bear We are alone, except for the dog. Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza October 15, 2014 Nuestra Señora de la Esperanza Carrie Vaughn A Wild Cards story. The Girl in the High Tower October 14, 2014 The Girl in the High Tower Gennifer Albin A Crewel story. Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch October 8, 2014 Mrs. Sorensen and the Sasquatch Kelly Barnhill An unconventional romance.
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October 10, 2014
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Part 1
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Shell Shock and Eldritch Horror: “Dagon”
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The Bloody Books of Halloween: William Peter Blatty’s The Exorcist
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Fri
Oct 24 2014 9:00am

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Part 3

Hello, everyone! Welcome back to the reread of Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. You can find the full schedule for the reread in the introduction post; catch up on past posts at the reread index; or check out Tor.com’s other posts about this book through its tag.

Please note that these reread posts will contain spoilers for all of JS&MN plus The Ladies of Grace Adieu. There’s accordingly no need to warn for spoilers in the comments—and comments are highly encouraged.

This week, the reread covers chapters 11 to 16, in which there is a prophecy and Stephen Black and an unexpected room, and I loathe Jonathan Strange’s father with every fiber of my being.

[“It is the easiest thing in the world to turn a review to one’s own ends. One only need mention the book once or twice and for the rest of the article one may develop one’s theme just as one chuses.”]

Fri
Oct 17 2014 10:00am

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Part 2

Hello, everyone! Welcome back to the reread of Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. You can find the full schedule for the reread in the introduction post; catch up on past posts at the reread index; or check out Tor.com’s other posts about this book through its tag.

Please note that reread posts will contain spoilers for all of JS&MN plus The Ladies of Grace Adieu. There’s accordingly no need to warn for spoilers in the comments—and comments are highly encouraged.

This week, the reread covers chapters 5 to 10, in which we meet Sir Walter Pole, Miss Emma Wintertowne, and the gentleman with the thistle-down hair.

[“It has been remarked (by a lady infinitely cleverer than the present author) how kindly disposed the world in general feels to young people who either die or marry.”]

Fri
Oct 10 2014 9:00am

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Part 1

Hello, everyone! Welcome the reread of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke. This week’s post covers chapters 1 through 4, in which magic returns to England after more than two hundred years; we meet the second of our title characters (and are introduced to the first, albeit in a footnote); and an impressive number of themes are established.

You can find the full schedule for the reread in the introduction post, or check out Tor.com’s other posts about this book through its tag.

Please note that reread posts will contain spoilers for all of JS&MN (as well as The Ladies of Grace Adieu). Spoilers are, accordingly, also fair game in the comments—and comments are highly encouraged.

[“He hardly ever spoke of magic, and when he did it was like a history lesson and no one could bear to listen to him.”]

Fri
Oct 3 2014 10:30am

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread: Introduction

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell Reread

Hello, everyone! I’m delighted to return to Tor.com with a new project, a reread of Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, designed to lead up to the forthcoming BBC adaptation (likely to begin in January).

JS&MN is one of my favorite books, and certainly my favorite book of the last decade or so. I love the prose, the characters, the worldbuilding (those footnotes!), the magic, the portrait of English society in an only slightly-alternate Regency… pretty much all of it, in other words. So I’m very excited to have the chance to talk about it in depth.

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Thu
Jan 2 2014 12:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: A Return for The Desolation of Smaug

poster for The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug

Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit, which I’ve reopened so we can talk about the movie The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. As you may recall, I liked the first movie more than I expected, and was surprised at some of the ways it adapted events from the larger Middle-earth canon. After the jump, I’ll discuss how I felt about this movie and run through some comparisons with the books. As always, spoilers for the movies and everything Tolkien (The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits). You can catch up with the past reread posts at the Hobbit reread index and the LotR reread index.

This post turned out to be epically long, but it’s broken up into sections for ease of reference, so click the jump link and let’s talk!

[“Like butter that has been scraped over too much bread”]

Thu
Apr 4 2013 12:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 19, “The Last Stage”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we conclude the reread with the book’s final chapter, “The Last Stage.”

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Thu
Mar 28 2013 12:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 18, “The Return Journey”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider the penultimate chapter, “The Return Journey,” which covers more than that title suggests.

[Read more…]

Thu
Mar 21 2013 12:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 17, “The Clouds Burst”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 17, “The Clouds Burst,” which contains many things indeed (though not, as far as I can tell, any rain).

[Read more…]

Thu
Mar 14 2013 12:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 16, “A Thief in the Night”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 16, “A Thief in the Night,” in which expectations of varying kinds are confounded.

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Thu
Mar 7 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 15, “The Gathering of the Clouds”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter Fifteen, “The Gathering of the Clouds,” which is in no way ominous setup for bad things to come, nuh-uh, no way.

[Read more…]

Thu
Feb 28 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 14, “Fire and Water”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 14, “Fire and Water,” in which we leave Bilbo and the dwarves for major happenings elsewhere.

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Thu
Feb 21 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 13, “Not at Home”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 13, “Not at Home,” which title has a couple of meanings.

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Thu
Feb 14 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 12, “Inside Information”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 12, “Inside Information,” in which there are more riddles in the dark and which causes me to discuss controversial subjects, so please read my disclaimer before commenting.

[Read more…]

Thu
Jan 31 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 11, “On the Doorstep”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we start the second half of the book with Chapter 11, “On the Doorstep,” in which there is rather a lot of faffing about.

[Read more…]

Thu
Jan 24 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 10, “A Warm Welcome”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we reach the halfway point of the book, Chapter 10, “A Warm Welcome,” in which (almost) everyone but Bilbo is pretty happy for a change.

[Read more…]

Thu
Jan 17 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 9, “Barrels Out of Bond”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote about Middle-earth (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 9, “Barrels Out of Bond,” which I would really, really like to see the Mythbusters tackle.

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Thu
Jan 10 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 8, “Flies and Spiders”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.com Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien wrote (that is: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 8, “Flies and Spiders,” in which there are the creeping horrors (and much else besides).

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Thu
Jan 3 2013 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 7, “Queer Lodgings”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.comWelcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit (and Happy Gregorian New Year). You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous reread of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien (that is: The Hobbit, LotR, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 7, “Queer Lodgings,” the title of which demonstrates the continuing evolution of English, or possibly that Britain and the United States are two nations divided by a common language. Or both.

[Read more . . . ]

Fri
Dec 28 2012 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Movie Interlude

The Hobbit Reread on Tor.com: Movie Interlude Welcome back to the chapter-by-chapter re-read of The Hobbit. This week, we are actually pausing the book reread to consider the movie The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which I saw last weekend and which, by happy coincidence, stops exactly where we left off with the book.

Short version: The movie is obviously flawed and too long, yet I enjoyed it a lot more than I was expecting. Slightly longer version: If you disliked the Lord of the Rings movies in their entirety, there is no way you will like this. If you liked some or all of the LotR movies, then you will probably like some or all of this, but I can’t predict the proportion. (You can find links to my thoughts on the LotR movies at the bottom of the LotR reread index. Or you can catch up on past posts in the Hobbit reread index.)

See behind the cut for the rather long version—with spoilers for both the movie and everything Tolkien, so feel free to read Tor.com’s review with only minor spoilers instead. (To my surprise, it is in fact possible to meaningfully spoil this movie.)

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Thu
Dec 20 2012 1:00pm

The Hobbit Reread: Chapter 6, “Out of the Frying-Pan Into the Fire”

The Hobbit reread on Tor.comWelcome back to the chapter-by-chapter reread of The Hobbit. You can find past posts at the reread index, or you can catch up with our previous re-read of The Lord of the Rings. As always, the discussion will contain spoilers for everything Tolkien (that is: The Hobbit, LotR, The Silmarillion, and various posthumous tidbits); if you haven’t read the book before and would like to remain unspoiled, I recommend reading along with Mark Reads first.

This week, we consider Chapter 6, “Out of the Frying-Pan Into the Fire”; I have checked three different editions and that title is correctly punctuated, so take it up with Tolkien and not me.

[Read more . . . ]