The Malazan Saga Returns: Read Chapter Three of Steven Erikson’s The God Is Not Willing

New York Times bestselling author Steven Erikson continues the beloved Malazan Book of the Fallen with The God Is Not Willing, first in the thrilling new Witness sequel trilogy—publishing November 9, 2021 with Tor Books.

Picking up right after the conclusion of The Crippled God, this opening entry in a truly epic saga continues the story of the unmatched warrior, Karsa Orlong, as he returns to his people. Karsa must travel the breadth of the world and cross paths with many of the survivors of the final cataclysmic showdown in order to make it back home.

Read Chapter Three below, and find previous excerpts here.

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Understanding Horses: Riding as Cooperation

Every now and then SFF Equines takes reader questions. (Have one of your own? Ask in comments.) Here is a good one from a reader who presents themself as “not much of a horse person.” They ask:

A very basic question that’s been growing in my mind the more you talk about riding as cooperation. Why does a horse with a human sitting on their back agree to let the human make most of the decisions about where to go? I mean, if you and your horse are heading down the trail on a hot day, and the trail forks with the left branch going to a pleasant, cool pine grove and the right branch going to a meadow where there are some new calves, and you think, “The pines would sure be nice but first I want to check on the calves,” and you say to the horse, “Let’s go right,” hopefully she’s going to agree even if she would prefer some shade. But why would she?

The key to how a horse thinks is what a horse is. A horse is a herd animal. She’s designed to live in groups, to be part of a larger whole.

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Sapphic Dystopian Excellence in Zoe Hana Mikuta’s Gearbreakers

In a brutal world falling to the tyrannical rule of a militarized state power, two furious girls risk everything to fight back. When their very different paths cross, they may find in each other the one thing they didn’t know they’ve been missing. Zoe Hana Mikuta infuses an intense sci-fi adventure with heart, hard choices, and found family in her debut novel Gearbreakers. 

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Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Collective”

Written by Andrew Shepherd Price & Mark Gaberman and Michael Taylor
Directed by Allison Liddi
Season 6, Episode 16
Production episode 235
Original air date: February 16, 2000
Stardate: unknown

Captain’s log. For the second time in three episodes, Chakotay, Neelix, Paris, and Kim are on the Delta Flyer. Their poker game is interrupted by a Borg Cube that snuck up on them, er, somehow. Warp drive is knocked offline, and Kim goes down below to fix it. But the cube pulls the Flyer in and knocks the crew out.

[“You will be assimilated.” “Not today, and not by you.”]

Series: Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch

A Witch’s Life for Me: How Kiki’s Delivery Service Mixes the Magical and the Mundane

Always a popular archetype, the witch has been having a surge of popularity these days. From Bewitched to the Sabrina comics to The Worst Witch to Little Witch Academia, there’s so much witchy media to consume to your heart’s content. As I’ve always been a fan of witches, this is something I’m happy to see. But even with all the stories centering on or about witches, I’m often reminded that Kiki’s Delivery Service is one of my favorite stories about being a witch.

It’s more than a residual affection for black cats from my Sailor Moon obsession, or even my interest in flying. Kiki’s Delivery Service makes magic and its witches both mundane and magical at the same time.

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Tor Books Acquires Holly Black’s Debut Adult Novel, Book of Night

#1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black announced on Friday evening that Tor Books would publish her debut adult novel Book of Night, a modern dark fantasy of shadowy thieves and secret societies in the vein of Ninth House and The Night Circus. Senior Editor Miriam Weinberg acquired North American rights from Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary & Media. The book will be published in the UK by Penguin Random House.

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The 30 Most Anticipated SFF Books for the Rest of 2021

It’s been a really weird year, hasn’t it?

Over the course of the Panera Bread we are very much still living through, we’ve talked a lot about how reading habits have changed. Many expressed an inability to read anything new. The mental exhaustion made it hard for folks to concentrate, the emotional exhaustion made it hard to take in anything new, to expose oneself to unpredictable emotional journeys. Priorities changed, spending habits changed. Maybe you had kids to take care of at home. Maybe you just didn’t want to give your money to A Large Corporation and there weren’t any indie bookstores delivering near you. Or maybe you only wanted to read something you knew would have a happy ending, an escape to something gentler than the world around you. Whatever the case may be, our relationship to reading has shifted.

I feel very lucky that reading is part of my life, but even so, the way I read has changed. I feel less able to commit to big series, I find it difficult to get through anything with too much violence. I sure as hell won’t be reading any pandemic dystopias any time soon. But I still feel incredibly grateful for the plethora of good stories that are out there. No matter what, I’m always able to find characters to fall in love with, and beautiful new worlds to escape to.

And I love being able to share them with you.

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Not So Fast: Five Books Featuring Sublight Space Travel

Faced with the improbability of superluminal travel, many authors have decided to opt for sublight starships. True, sublight travel has significant challenges (slow travel, high energy demands) but at least it doesn’t necessarily break causality. Is it possible to tell interesting stories without faster-than-light travel? Yes indeed! Consider these five tales of sublight exploration and trade.

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Netflix Releases First Glimpse of The Witcher Season 2

The Witcher is coming. To help close out its #GeekedWeek, Netflix has shown off an ever-so-short teaser of the upcoming second season of the fantasy TV series.

The streaming service also announced that it’s partnering with CD PROJEKT RED to host a one-day virtual WitcherCon, which is set to take place next month—where we’ll presumably get a longer glimpse at the upcoming season.

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Saoirse Ronan and LaKeith Stanfield Will Star in Garth Davis’s Adaptation of Iain Reid’s Foe

For all her excellent, wide-ranging roles, Saoirse Ronan has not yet been to space. And alas, though she’s set to star in writer-director Garth Davis’s adaptation of Iain Reid’s near future SF novel Foe, she’s still not going to space. That honor goes to Paul Mescal (Normal People), who will play Junior, a man randomly chosen to visit an experimental space station. But his wife, Hen (Ronan), won’t exactly be left alone at home.

Deadline’s piece about the film and the book’s cover copy are both teasingly vague, but it sounds like there’s either a clone or a robot involved.

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The Fragmented Horrors of Josh Malerman’s Goblin

Josh Malerman’s novel Goblin is subtitled “A Novel in Six Novellas,” a definition which may well make the overtly literal skew their heads in confusion. Goblin is also the city in which Goblin is set, and the six stories that comprise the book—seven if you count a framing sequence—offer a kind of portrait of a town from myriad perspectives. (Subtitling the book “A Town in Six Novellas” would have been just as accurate.) Earthling Publications first released this book in 2017; now, with Malerman’s profile significantly higher in the wake of the film adaptation of his novel Bird Box, it’s seeing wider release in a new edition.

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Jo Walton’s Reading List: April and May 2021

I’m sorry I didn’t do a post for April. It’s totally my own fault: I forgot it was May. What even is time? Never could get the hang of Thursdays. By the time people poked me about it, it felt a bit late, and I thought I’d do a combo post for both months together. However, April was a very exciting and busy month, because I got a first vaccine shot, and also I was helping long distance with Ada Palmer’s class papal election, and then May was… well, the snow melted, and as from last Friday we no longer have a curfew, and I may get a second dose of vaccine this week, and all shall be well and all manner of things shall be well.

In April and May combined I read a total of 32 books, and some of them were unexpectedly wonderful.

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