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03-12-03:Anne Rule Adapted, Adam Roberts' New Look

Anne Rule Adapted

Anne Rule send her greetings, nope, her dismay at discovering her good friend Ted Bundy was in fact a serial killer.

My favorite Anne Rule book -- and to my mind, one of the best 'true crime' books you can find -- is 'The Stranger Beside Me'. In it, she tells the story of her friendship with one Ted Bundy, a friendship that dissolved as she realized he was the serial killer whose crimes she was investigating. While I thought 'The Deliberate Stranger' an excellent look at this twisted mind, I'm on board to watch this adaptation and see whether or not USA embarrasses itself. I hope not; and if so, readers are directed to the book, which is peculiarly chatty and personal. The mundanity of Rule's experience contrasts nicely with the extremity of what's going on in Bundy's.

Adam Roberts' New Look

Adam Roberts' new look is perhaps a bit more shall we say, approprite for his cerebral appraoch to science fiction.

Adam Roberts' new book 'Polystom' is coming out in May, and Victor Gollancz are re-issuing the paperbacks with a new cover design. To my mind, these covers more accurately reflect the dry and cerebral nature of Roberts' work. From what I can suss without spoiling it, 'Polystom' looks to be the best yet -- a little more personal and certainly on the wild side of imagination. You can find reviews of 'Salt', 'On', 'Park Polar' and 'Stone', an overview of his fiction and an interview with Adam Roberts on this site. I've been a fan since I first found 'Salt'. We'll see how the new one measures up.

03-11-03: John Varley, James Blaylock, Eric Schlosser and Kevin Randle

John Varley's 'Red Thunder'

No, it's not the novelization of a bad movie. Yet.

I received lots of interesting new books in the mail to day. John Varley is one of the writers who formed my youthful SF reading, with such classics as 'Gaia', 'Titan' and 'Wizard'. I haven't read any of his recent material, but now's my chance. The premise is kind of creepily appealing. It involves DIY AMERICANS who put together a spaceship on a shoestring to rescue a marooned mission. It all sounds a bit patriotic, and the proximity of the Columbia tragedy makes it rather uncomfortable. Overall, it's rather a weird vibe.

James Blaylock's 13 Phantasms

James Blaylock short stories are a great introduction to this peculiar author's style and range.

Formerly only available in a small press edition from Edgewood Press, now Ace has published a nice trade paperback edition of '13 Phantasms'. Blaylock is a slippery writer. He covers steampunk to subtle supernatural horror. He does surreal collaborations with Tim Powers. It's a good sign that this collection was published for the mass market.

Eric Schlosser's 'Reefer Madness'

Three layers of sleaze from the man who brought you the grease from your favorite fast food restaurant.

Readers wanting to get a preview of Eric Schlosser's new book, 'Reefer Madness' can easily find the articles upon which the book is based. He first wrote about this subject back in 1994 in the article 'Reefer Madness'. He updated his article in 1997, in 'More Reefer Madness'. This meditation on pot, porn and illegal immigrants is going to go over a treat in the current political climate. It certainly looks like fun reading to me.

Kevin Randle's 'Signals'

Incoming phone, collect. Another novel about aliens who contact humanity with radios.

Kevin Randle is one of the folks who started the most recent of Roswell mining. He's a member of the UFO press. For anyone who has ever spent more than a little time reading non-fiction about UFOs, it's no surprise when one of the non-fiction writers turns up writing science fiction. The UFO press is itself a fairly science fictional phenomenon.