It's raining, so read a book

What should one do on a rainy day? Can't mow the lawn or go to the beach. You could watch a movie or clean the bathroom. I suggest reading a book. This morning I picked-up a copy of Counting Heads by David Marusek. The story takes place on our lovely planet Earth in 2134. Life is wonderful. The Information Age has given way to the Boutique Age. Instead of items being mass produced, you have have your clothes, food, even medicines made for you right at home with nanotechnology. But, it all comes at a price...

John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Science Fiction Novel of 2007

The Campbell Award (and a list of previous winners) named In War Times by Kathleen Ann Goonan the Best Science Fiction Novel of 2007. The award was created to honor the late editor of Astounding Science Fiction magazine (now called Analog). Many writers and scholars call Campbell, who edited the magazine from 1937 until his death in 1971, the father of modern science fiction.

You might remember back in January 2008, In War Times was picked as the best 2007 SF novel by the American Library Association's Reading List Council Genre Fiction Awards. For a list of the major literary award winners, check out our new service : BookLetters.

Iron Man

Iron Man is an action-packed take on the tale of wealthy philanthropist Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), who develops an invulnerable robotic suit to fight the throes of evil. In addition to being filthy rich, billionaire industrialist Tony Stark is also a genius inventor. When Stark is kidnapped and forced to build a diabolical weapon, he instead uses his intelligence and ingenuity to construct an indestructible suit of armor and escape his captors. Once free, Stark discovers a deadly conspiracy that could destabilize the entire globe, and dons his powerful new suit on a mission to stop the villains and save the world. Gwyneth Paltrow co-stars as his secretary, Virginia "Pepper" Potts, while Terrence Howard fills the role of Jim "Rhodey" Rhodes, one of Stark's colleagues, whose military background leads him to help in the formation of the suit. Click on the link to watch the Iron Man Trailer and reserve your copy through our catalog.

The journey of a lifetime...

Next month the latest retelling of Jules Verne's Journey to the Center of the Earth will hit the big screens. Fortunately, you don't have to wait that long to experience this wonderful story. In fact, we own the 1959 release starring Pat Boone and James Mason. The movie is one of my all time favorites. You should also check out the book and for much younger readers, we have the Wishbone version. Enjoy!

Fabulous Fiction Firsts #115

Michigan native Scott Sigler's previous novels are "free, serialized podcasts that generated a large online following and saw over 4 million downloads".

His print debut Infected* will thrill and chill SF and horror fans with a mysterious disease that is turning ordinary Americans across the country into raving, screaming, homicidal maniacs.

CIA operative Dew Phillips and Center for Disease Control epidemiologist Margaret Montoya race in vain to capture a live victim. Meanwhile Perry Dawsey - a hulking former University of Michigan football star awakens one morning to find several mysterious itchy welts growing on his body. Soon Perry finds himself acting and thinking strangely, hearing voices ... he is infected.

With numerous references to Michigan and the UM, this is definitely a fast-paced and captivating read. Try the podcast just for fun and stop scratching!

* = Starred Review

The Beginning of the End...

As the galaxy is on the brink of war, seven travelers depart for the planet Hyperion. On Hyperion in the Valley of the Time Tombs exists the Shrike, a being from the future, able to fulfill their wishes. So begins Hyperion by Dan Simmons, a 1989 Hugo Award winner. It is the first story in the The Hyperion Cantos which includes The Fall of Hyperion, Endymion, and The Rise of Endymion.

The Cold War ... In Space

I don't know about you, but I like pulp science fiction. Some of my favorites are The Day the Earth Stood Still and Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Here's something along the same line: The Sky People by S. M. Stirling. It turns out that in the 1960s, Russian probes discovered the planet of Venus was inhabited. Now the US Commonwealth is racing against the Eastern Block countries to tame the world. In 1988 a Russian rocket crashes in the remote wilderness which can only be reached by a US airship based in Jamestown. Will the airship's crew reach the crash site in time as they confront dinosaurs and the planet's natives to reach the downed rocket? Read on to find out...

A mystery for the ages...

Time is running out. The Earth of the 22nd century is on its way to global self-destruction. Fortunately, faster-than-light (ftl) space travel is available to help teams find a new home. One such place is Quaraqua, a planet of mystery. It turns out, an ancient civilization previously inhabited the planet. Now Richard Wald, an interstellar archaeologist, and Priscilla Hutchins, his pilot, must collect as much data on the site before the planet is terraformed. So goes The Engines of God by Jack McDevitt. The story continues in DeepSix, Chindi, and Omega.

They are still recruiting

The Starfist series of books by David Sherman and Dan Cragg follows the Confederation Marine brigade, the 34th FIST (Fleet Initial Strike Team) during their time of service. In the opening book of the series First to Fight we are introduced to Gunnery Sergeant Charlie Bass and new Marine recruits Claypoole and Dean, on their mission to the planet Elneal. Their duty is to provide humanitarian relief. The planet is completely worthless except for mineral deposits which are being mined by Consolidated Enterprises. The indigenous population is primarily composed of nomadic tribes who wage constant war amongst themselves until now...

On the move...

When was the last time you had to move? Did it take a moving truck and several car loads of stuff to get the job done? Imagine moving an entire planet. Thanks to author Greg Bear you can in Moving Mars. The story centers around Casseia Mujumdar and follows her life from student revolutionary to planet president. Casseia's former lover Charles Franklin has found a way to move anything an infinite distance. With war looming between Earth and Mars, will Charles make the ultimate sacrifice to save the planet?

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