In This Life or the Next — Warrior Nun Season One Is Almost Great

Based on a comic book called Warrior Nun Areala created by Ben Dunn that was published in the 1990s and 2000s, the first season of the new Netflix series Warrior Nun has gone live. It’s overall a good series, but it falls short of greatness due to its reliance on two extremely tired and bad tropes. However, discussing one, possibly both, of them requires a big-ass SPOILER WARNING, so consider yourself warned that this review will discuss all ten episodes of the first season, including the tenth that has major revelations.

[SPOILERS for all ten episodes of the first season of Warrior Nun….]

Kate Elliott Talks About Adapting History to Fiction in Her AMA!

Kate Elliott has been a finalist for both the Nebula and World Fantasy Awards, a nominee for the Andre Norton Award, and a seven-time Locus Award nominee. She is the author of multiple series, including The Spiritwalker Trilogy, the Crossroads series, the Crown of Stars series, the Court of Fives series, and the fantasy series beginning with Black Wolves, which won the RT Reviewers Choice Award. (Not sure where to start? Check out her very handy blog-post on this very topic.)

Her most recent book is Unconquerable Sun (available now from Tor Books), which she describes as “gender-swapped Alexander the Great in spaaaace. Space opera? Space epic? Space adventure? Space campaign? You tell me.” This week, she dropped by r/Fantasy for an AMA, where she talked Alexander the Great research, writing sci-fi vs. fantasy, tips on genre-blending, tips on plot and conflict, favorite tropes, Slow TV, and much, much more. Here are the highlights!

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Terry Pratchett Book Club: The Colour of Magic, Part IV

We’re back again for more Terry Pratchett Book Club, and this time we’ll do a little jig because we’re coming to the end of our first book! Which probably calls for a cake, or a party, but this is a book club, so we’ll read instead.

We’ve come to the final section of The Colour of Magic, “Close to the Edge”. In this moment, it’s meant rather literally…

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Series: Terry Pratchett Book Club

To Create Is To Live Forever: Jo Walton’s Or What You Will

Sylvia is a writer nearing the end of her life. Widowed with two daughters whom she loves but is distant with, with over thirty novels written to her name, and with one last book in her, she is making peace with her death, the end of it all. Only there’s someone in her life who won’t let her go; a character in her mind, who has been in nearly every story she’s written, a nameless man who has been with her almost every step of the way. And if she dies without putting him in a book for real, then he will die along with her, trapped in her skull. Thus begins Jo Walton’s Or What You Will, a book about books, about art, about writing and creation, and how in the act of creating, we work towards immortality.

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Revealing The Future Is Yours, a Sci-Fi Thriller by Dan Frey

Two best friends create a computer that can see one year into the future. But what they can’t predict is how it will tear their friendship—and society—apart.

We’re excited to share the cover for The Future Is Yours, a science fiction thriller from author Dan Frey—publishing February 2021 with Del Rey. Check out the cover below, along with an excerpt of the first chapter!

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Complications and Contradictions: All of Us With Wings by Michelle Ruiz Keil

Michelle Ruiz Keil’s young adult historical fantasy novel All of Us With Wings is a challenging book to review. Full of difficult but important themes and topics, it embraces discomfort and pushes the reader to look deeper. This is a heartrending story about grief and recovery, abuse and survival, independence and found family. It may not be something everyone is ready to read, but for those who need it, the book will feel like catharsis.

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Read the First Three Chapters of Michael R. Underwood’s Annihilation Aria

Max is a cheery xeno-archeologist from Earth, stranded and trying to find a way home. Lahra is a stern warrior of a nearly extinct race searching for her people’s heir. Wheel is the couple’s cybernetic pilot running from her past and toward an unknown future…

The trio traverse the galaxy in Michael R. Underwood’s space opera adventure Annihilation Aria, publishing July 21st with Parvus Press. Read an excerpt below!

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Portal Doors, Talking Marmots, and Disembodied Heads: A Peculiar Peril by Jeff VanderMeer

A Peculiar Peril is, like all of Jeff VanderMeer’s books, very peculiar indeed. Defying genre expectations, it is at once epic fantasy, contemporary fantasy, historical fantasy, and portal world fantasy. It is a young adult novel with POV chapters featuring not just teens but inexplicable magical beasts, talking animals, rebellious mages, a stressed out speculative fiction author, and the head of an undead French emperor. It is a big book full of strange turns of phrase, stranger characters and settings, and a nagging sense that by the time you finish you will both know too much and not enough.

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Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch: “Remember”

Written by Brannon Braga & Joe Menosky and Lisa Klink
Directed by Winrich Kolbe
Season 3, Episode 6
Production episode 148
Original air date: October 9, 1996
Stardate: 50203.1

Captain’s log. Voyager is ferrying a group of Enaran colonists back to their homeworld of Enara Prime. In exchange for getting them home in a fraction of time that their own slower ships would get them there, the Enarans provide Voyager with their superior energy-conversion technology.

[So that’s it? We just go on our merry way and nobody ever has to take any kind of responsibility?]

Series: Star Trek: Voyager Rewatch

The Feral Fake Horror of Sam Raimi’s The Evil Dead

The Blair Witch Project is generally credited with inventing the found footage horror genre in 1999. But if you are looking for the first film with shaky camera work and amateurish actors stumbling around in the woods, you need to go back 18 years earlier to Sam Raimi’s The Evil Dead, a movie whose scrappy anti-slickness was, unexpectedly, both inimitable and one of the most prescient looks of the ’80s.

The Evil Dead was made for only about $350,000, and it looks like it. But where found footage movies use their low-budget aesthetic to signal authenticity and ground-level hand-held documentary verité, Raimi leans into the wrongness of his ersatz grungy fakeness. The giddy terror of Evil Dead comes from the way it plunges its hapless protagonists into a pasteboard world, in which literally anything can come tearing through the cabin walls. “It’s not real” can be a comforting mantra—until, suddenly, it isn’t.

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Aliette de Bodard Talks Endings, Mythology, and Fountain Pens in Reddit AMA

Aliette de Bodard is the author of the Hugo-nominated Xuya Universe series—”space opera set in a galactic empire of Vietnamese inspiration where sentient ships are part of families“—and the Dominion of the Fallen series—”dark Gothic books set in a Paris devastated by a magical war.” A triple-Nebula-award winner, quadruple BSFA-award winner, and a winner of the Locus award, she also works as an engineer in railway signalling and currently lives in Paris.

Her newest book is Of Dragons, Feasts, and Murders, which she describes as “a fantasy of murders and manners that merges Asian court dramas with high Gothic—perfect for fans of KJ Charles, The Untamed and Roshani Chokshi’s The Gilded Wolves.” This week, she dropped by r/Fantasy for an AMA, where she talked book recommendations, tea recommendations, fountain pen recommendations, writing from the POV of sentient non-humans, writing as an exophone writer, exposition, endings, novellas, mythology, Full Metal Alchemist, and much, much more. Here are the highlights!

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Exploring the People of Middle-earth: Ulmo, Lord of Waters, Part 1

In this biweekly series, we’re exploring the evolution of both major and minor figures in Tolkien’s legendarium, tracing the transformations of these characters through drafts and early manuscripts through to the finished work. This week’s installment is the first in a mini-series exploring the Vala Ulmo, Lord and Wielder of Waters, Dweller of the Deep, the Pourer: the god at whose prompting Gondolin was founded and through whose protection Eärendil made his renowned journey to the Undying Lands.

Despite playing little more than a supporting role in Middle-earth’s great dramas, Ulmo casts a long shadow—even for a god. Read through The Silmarillion and The History of Middle-earth and you’ll get the distinct impression that the Lord of Waters is a force to be reckoned with. And not because he’s constantly showing off his power; rather, it’s because he sees far more clearly than his peers and sets his pieces in motion before anyone else realizes there’s a game to be played.

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