An acclaimed musician and her apprentice travel to the newly freed country of Skinnere to play a complex and culturally fraught song that will lay bare the wounds of empire, occupation, and sacrifice of its players and listeners.
Andre Norton has a habit of running out of page count in her novels. Her adventures gallop headlong from peril to peril, swerving past monsters both human and otherwise, diving underground, careening through weird and wonderful landscapes, until they screech to a halt on the very last page, sometimes the very last paragraph. Then the characters of opposite sex, if any, suddenly swear eternal—something. Not love so much as end-of-movie lip-lock and rapid fade to black.
It’s not often that she loses control of her material. Her adventures for the most part are tightly plotted. She might run out of plot halfway through and repeat it all over again to fill out the page count, but in general, abrupt ending aside, she knows how to keep the story moving and how much information to provide in the process. Even the abrupt ending has a reason: She is not really interested in the mushy stuff, but if there’s a girl and a guy and they work together to solve the big plot-problem, the standard expectation seems to be that they’ll become a romantic unit. Or aromantic unit. Something more or less heteronormative.
In the last decade, new satellites and observatories have drastically expanded our understanding of the universe. We now know that planets are a pretty common phenomena around the galaxy, bringing us to a question that science fiction has long imagined answers to: What will life around the galaxy look like?
The European Astrobiology Institute is adding its own spin on the question with a new anthology: Life Beyond Us, which will feature twenty-two short stories that address this concept. The anthology has since funded via Kickstarter, and you’ve only got a day or so to back it if you’d like a copy.
Keep your eye on the crown…
We’re thrilled to share an excerpt from The Queen Will Betray You, the sequel to Sarah Henning’s The Princess Will Save You—available July 6th from Tor Teen. This won’t be the last you see of Princess Amarande and Luca—look out for the third book in The Kingdoms of Sand & Sky Trilogy, The King Will Kill You, set to release in 2022!
Last month, Den of Geek previewed a new science fiction series hitting the airwaves: Intergalactic, a new series set roughly 150 years in the future about an interstellar cop, Ash Harper, who’s framed and sentenced to a prison planet, only to find herself in the midst of a mutiny as her fellow prisoners stage a jailbreak.
The series looked like a lot of fun, but at the time it was only slated for release in the UK on Sky One. Now, US viewers will get to see the series: it’s set to drop all eight episodes on Peacock on Thursday, May 13th.
Tordotcom Publishing is thrilled to announce that Nghi Vo is returning to the empire of Ahn and the Singing Hills Cycle. Ruoxi Chen has acquired Into the Riverlands and two more novellas in the award-winning series, which began with The Empress of Salt and Fortune. The deal, for World English rights, was brokered by Diana Fox at Fox Literary.
Written by Michael Taylor and Brannon Braga & Joe Menosky
Directed by Winrich Kolbe
Season 6, Episode 7
Production episode 225
Original air date: November 10, 1999
Captain’s log. On the Vaadwaur homeworld, orbital bombardment is destroying their capital city. In an underground cavern, Gedrin and his wife Jisa have put hundreds of their fellow Vaadwaur into stasis pods, though some pods have failed. Their plan is to wake up in five years and rebuild their civilization.
Series: Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch
This month I bring you an eccentric mix of short speculative fiction stories. Necromancy and ghosts, trauma and chronic pain, power and identity, sentient fruits and killer security units. Come for the weird, stay for the even weirder.
Rule of Wolves is a book that reads less like a pack of wolves growling at succession and more like a group of super zoomy dogs at a park after winter. The plot runs around, the characters rarely stay still, and you’re left unsure of whose lead to follow, but like, great for these dogs, honestly, they’re just like, really, happy to be here.
The seventh book in the Grishaverse series and the follow-up novel to King of Scars, Rule of Wolves trails after young King Nikolai in his pursuit of peace, General Zoya as she strives to protect the Grisha, and the spy Nina Zenik as she attempts to gather information from inside the belly of the beast. There are other characters that have their own manipulations and agencies, namely the Darkling, newly returned from the dead, and Mayu Kir-Kaat, the imposter Shu princess.
So, overall, there’s just a lot of really adorable puppies rolling around in the plot.
As we reported a month ago, the campaign to #MakeMoreMST3K reached it’s initial goal in an impressive thirty-six hours. But wait, there’s more!
Friday night, Joel Hodgson and members of the new casts hosted a five-hour long telethon, featuring an eclectic collection of Very Special Guests (Dana Gould! Alex Winter!! Rockafire Explosion…?..!!!) which, in addition to being super fun, culminated in 36,581 backers breaking the old MST3K Kickstarter record and raising $6,519,019!
So we’re not just getting more MST3K, we’re getting a plethora of MST3K.
Mark Millar has probably had more of his comic book storylines adapted for the screen than anyone not named Stan Lee, Alan Moore, Frank Miller, or Chris Claremont. Besides the Kingsman and Kick Ass movies, a lot of his work on The Ultimates was mined in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, not to mention Logan being inspired by his Old Man Logan miniseries.
With Marvel now corporately bonded to Disney+, and DC similarly linked to HBO Max, Netflix has been going after independent comics (The Umbrella Academy, The Old Guard, Warrior Nun), and they have now done a deal with Millar to adapt his comics to the screen. This partnership kicks off with Jupiter’s Legacy, and it is very much not an auspicious start.
After teasing Woody Harrelson’s Cleetus Cassidy at the end of the first Venom movie, the trailer for the sequel promises to dive deeper into his sinister story. At the same time, Tom Hardy’s Eddie Brock and his Venom symbiote lean into their buddy comedy dynamic. These two opposing tones come together for a weird blend of comedy, drama, and… breakfast?
The best part of The Mandalorian is that its main character can take a hit.
It’s not a trait often seen in Star Wars. The heroes of the original trilogy are protected from harm by the infamously terrible aim of the stormtroopers they encounter. The heroes of the prequel trilogy guarded themselves via superb reflexes and laser swords, which offered fail-safe protection against all blaster fire until the moment they didn’t. For as many people as are seen wearing armor in this universe, it has never seemed to do very much. Until now.
It’s been weeks since you last socialized (in the flesh) with anyone outside your household…or with anyone, if you live alone. Loneliness is tough. But things could be worse: you could be a rogue world, ejected from your home system billions of years ago. You could be a pitiful world formed far from any star. Such worlds are commonplace in our galaxy. They are not quite so common in science fiction. Still, a few of them feature in books that you may have read…
Head below for the full list of horror and genre-bending titles heading your way in May!
Is this the beginning of the Haunted Mansion Ride Cinematic Universe? This fall, the Muppets meet the Mansion in a Halloween crossover special with the straightforward title Muppets Haunted Mansion. The announcement of this “terrifying tale of total scariness” (per Gonzo) is part of Disney’s Halfway to Halloween promotion, which should involve a few more “shriek peeks” today and tomorrow.
Disney bought the Muppets in 2004, and the entire run of the original Muppet Show is available on Disney+. Under Disney, there have been two Muppet movies, a brief attempt to revitalize a new Muppet Show, a reboot of Muppet Babies, and the streaming series Muppets Now.
And now the Muppets are going to the Haunted Mansion.