There are worse things than a local gangster’s cronies lurking in New Jersey’s wetlands…
There are worse things than a local gangster’s cronies lurking in New Jersey’s wetlands…
A banished warrior teaches her treacherous uncle that once made, some oaths cannot be broken…and some monsters cannot be chained.
Commander Niaja vrau Erezeng is up against an enemy that doesn’t just destroy all the beings, ships, and planets in its path, but also consumes their greatest arts, somehow scratching them from existence everywhere…
While all her friends’ fish are changing into mermaids, is 12-year-old Anissa’s fish becoming something else?
When the waters rose, the people who stayed on the River learned they weathered the storms best together, but what happens when one of their own becomes curious about the Land?
A photographer’s obsession with an unsettled subject exposes two friends to a darkness that won’t be contained by frames…
We’re excited to reprint “The Woman Carrying a Corpse” by Chi Hui, translated from Chinese by Judith Huang, from the groundbreaking anthology The Way Spring Arrives and Other Stories, edited by Yu Chen and Regina Kanyu Wang, out now in paperback!
“The Woman Carrying a Corpse” was originally published as 背尸体的女人 in December 2019 by Flower City (花城).
What is it with moons in fantasy? Is it possible that Earth’s rocky tag-a-long is too boring and barren for us? Fantasy moons need verve, a bit of spice! They can’t simply hang out, endlessly revolving, reflecting the light of whatever sun(s) shine on the magical worlds we hold dear…
I’m working on my own fantasy story about a weird and magical moon, and it’s inspired me to look into other stories that make the moon more than a simple rock locked in orbit with a larger mass. Fantasy has no shortage of lunar lunacy; below, let’s discuss five of my favorite moons. As always, I want to hear your own favorites in the comments!
In 1987, editor David G. Hartwell embarked on a massive undertaking.
Through conversations, panels, and a variety of correspondence, he came to realize the horror genre was at something of a turning point. A lot of horror writers and critics, when they cited their influences and favorite works, tended to favor short stories over longer forms of horror. In fact, a lot of the works that drove horror history appeared to be short stories. After much thought, he compiled what he felt was a definitive work on shorter horror at the crossroads of the genre; The way forward being paved by novels, the previous history built upon the foundation of short stories. It was meant as an all-encompassing paean to dark fiction, to discuss and outline Hartwell’s own thoughts and definitions of the genre.
The result was a huge tome titled The Dark Descent, as much a historical and critical work of horror as it was an attempt to codify and collect the best specimens of short horror stories. It’s award-winning, weighty in both content and size, and looms large in the collections of horror fans old and new.
Return of the Jedi has always been a film with a ragged reputation among Star Wars devotees. We’ve gone back and forth for decades over whether it deserves the ire and frustration aimed in its direction by a certain stripe of fan, but you can’t get around one all-important factor in Star Wars experiences—how old you were for your first viewing of any given installment. Given that, we’re no closer to solving the conundrum of its position at the bottom of many Star Wars movie ranking lists.
Still, it seems to me that any appreciation of Episode VI’s cinematic quality gets lost in this shuffle, and today, I’d like to remedy that injustice. So let’s do it: Let’s talk about what makes Return of the Jedi a brilliant piece of movie myth-making.
Marvel is no stranger to putting out behind-the-scenes featurettes about the making of their films. Those videos, however, are polished affairs, while the twenty-five minutes of footage Karen Gillan released about her time working on Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 are decidedly, wonderfully, not.
Paramount+, fresh on the heels of a new trailer for the second season of Strange New Worlds, has put out an extended clip from the show’s second episode of the second season.
To my mind, a road trip is not an exodus or a flight from danger. It can start with one of those things but only transcends to “road trip” status when the danger is over, and the participants are looking for the next thing. Road trips are exploratory and often recreational, more ‘let’s see what’s around the next bend’ and less ‘if we don’t keep moving, we’ll have to eat grandpa.’
Happy one-day-belated Glorious 25th of May! Let’s all sit out on the steps with cups of cocoa in remembrance. (I may have done this already.)
Hans Christian Andersen’s earliest years were marked by extreme poverty. His parents did not live together until nine months after his birth, leading Andersen and others to wonder if his father of record—also named Hans Andersen, a shoemaker—was indeed his father. Highly dubious legends later insisted that Andersen was the illegitimate scion of noble, even royal blood, but if so, noble and royal money was distinctly absent in those early years. His maternal grandmother died in a poorhouse, as did his mother. His (probable) paternal grandfather became mentally ill later in life, and also landed in a poorhouse, leaving his wife and children in desperate financial straits. A cousin landed in jail for begging.
What saved Andersen’s soul, then and later, were fairy tales about magical things like little mermaids.
The Mortal Kombat sequel is moving full steam ahead. In addition to adding Johnny Cage (Karl Urban) to the second film in the franchise helmed by director Simon McQuoid, Kitana and Jade will also be fighting her way in the upcoming movie.
What if the devil’s mark doesn’t exist?
We’re thrilled to share an excerpt from A Crooked Mark by Linda Kao, a young adult horror novel publishing with Razorbill on June 20th.
Anequs’ people, the Masquisit, have lived on their island long enough to have known the world before the Anglish arrived, survived the diseases and theft and massacres the colonizers brought with them, and the industrialization that now creeps at the edges of what’s left of their lands. Ostensibly, they are under Anglish rule, but unlike their neighbors on nearby islands, they’ve so far been left mostly to their own devices. That all ends when Anequs encounters a dragon egg left behind by a forlorn Nampeshiwe. When the egg hatches and Kasaqua is born, Anequs bonds with her and becomes Nampeshiweisit. And with that, her entire life changes in an instant.
“Do you guys ever think about dying?”
Listen, if I had ever made a list of things I did not expect Barbie to say, this question would probably be on it. But Barbie is a Greta Gerwig movie, and there are a lot of unexpected things in it. Including the fact that Barbie (Margot Robbie) gets Birkenstock-pilled into discovering the real world.
Yeah, I said it: Barbie is basically Neo.
If you are of a certain age, you remember it well: The creepy, haunting, downright iconic—and totally weird—cover of the 1976 Dell edition of Madeleine L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time.
But while many of us remember being scared by (and/or fascinated with) this image, there’s an unexpected mystery behind it: No one seems to know who the artist is.
I’ve been trying to think about how to talk about Mrs. Davis.
Do I go super personal, here in the privacy of the internet? Do I talk about the religion puns? Do I put Father Ziegler’s arc in conversation with Hudson Hawk? Do I talk about the Sisters of the Coin, and put that arc in conversation with the oeuvre of Dan Brown?
I don’t think I want to do any of that. What is that but showing off—”Oh I’ve seen this other thing, here’s how it reminded me of this new thing.” Instead I’ll say that it’s thrilling to watch something that’s isn’t afraid of big ideas and gleeful irreverence.
A few months back, The New York Times asked Leigh Bardugo what books got her into fantasy as a genre. She named a handful of books, adding,”I think any time you can remember where you were when you read a book for the first time (Dune—tiny motel room on a miserable family trip, A Swiftly Tilting Planet on the white shag carpet in my grandparents’ back room) that means something.”
And it does, doesn’t it? Over the months I’ve been writing this column, I’ve mentioned more than one book about which I remember the specifics of my first reading experience: trying not to audibly cry on a Greyhound bus as I finished Where the Red Fern Grows; reading Lavinia on a train, the sound of wheels on tracks locking in with Le Guin’s prose; wading through Wanderers on a (pre-pandemic) plane, increasingly creeped out by the people too close to me.
Would I remember these books the same way if I had read them elsewhere? What alchemy makes these memories so clear? What is it that makes some stories coalesce so clearly in our minds, like postcards you can flip back through?
For me, reading is meditation—a flow-inducing escape from whatever woes the workday brings me, and a welcome reprieve from any worries that might be flitting around my mind.
More than 90 percent of the time, I find that escape in the form of a many-volume epic sci-fi or fantasy story. Once in a while, though, I need something more subtle and nuanced—a book or a story that speaks to my need for calm and comfort and allows—even encourages—my mind to take a break from my anxieties and find a new perspective.
It takes a special kind of book by a special kind of author to ease my mind in exactly the right way, and today I’m happy to share five of my favorites with you. These books and stories are all at the top of my list whenever I need to take a break, reflect, and focus on what’s important in life…
The finalists for the 2023 Ignyte Awards have been announced! These awards “seek to celebrate the vibrancy and diversity of the current and future landscape of science fiction, fantasy and horror by recognizing incredible feats in storytelling and outstanding efforts towards inclusivity within the genre.”
The shortlist is selected by twenty BIPOC+ voters, including FIYAHCON staff and previous winners of the awards; this year, a dozen teen readers were also involved in the middle grade and young adult categories. All are invited to vote for the winners here. Voting closes at 11:59 pm EDT on June 30th.
Winners will be announced at a ceremony in October.
Congratulations to the finalists!
Welcome back to Reading the Weird, in which we get girl cooties all over weird fiction, cosmic horror, and Lovecraftiana—from its historical roots through its most recent branches.
This week, we cover Molly Tanzer’s “Go, Go, Go, Said the Byakee,” first published in Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Paula R Stiles’s Future Lovecraft in 2011. You may be able to find it more easily in Nick Mamatas’s Wonder and Glory Forever anthology. Spoilers ahead!