Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Reviews (page 283)

HARVEST OF STARS by Poul Anderson
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"Why he persists in grinding out ponderous, somnolent, bloated offerings like this is one of science fiction's enduring mysteries."
Medium-future power struggle between a North America gripped by a techno-religious dictatorship, and an interplanetary corporation representing the last bastion of free enterprise: from the author of The Boat of a Million Years, Orion Shall Rise, etc. The doctrine of Avantism predicts a transcendent future for humanity; but, meanwhile, the real ruler of North America is secret police chief Enrique Sayre, whose best weapon is a computer-copied personality (``download'') of Avantism's main opponent—the late Fireball head honcho Anson Guthrie—that's been reprogrammed to accept Avantism. Read full book review >
DAUGHTER OF ELYSIUM by Joan Slonczewski
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"A marvelous array of cultures presented in astonishing depth: an enormously impressive achievement, despite Slonczewski's inability to dramatize events rather than simply report them."
A fistful of cultural conflicts centered on the ocean-covered planet Shora, where a thousand years have passed since the actions described in Slonczewski's hardcover debut novel, A Door Into Ocean (1986). Read full book review >

A NIGHT IN THE LONESOME OCTOBER by Roger Zelazny
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: Aug. 1, 1993

"Sparkling, witty, delightful: Zelazny's best for ages, perhaps his best ever."
After years of unprepossessing folderol—the wearisome Nine Princes in Amber retreads are depressingly typical—Zelazny bursts forth with, well, ``Victorian light supernatural fantasy'' just about covers it. Read full book review >
THE YEAR'S BEST SCIENCE FICTION by Gardner Dozois
FICTION & LITERATURE
Released: July 30, 1993

"Finally, a disappointing entry in a hitherto superlative series."
As the number of entries dwindles (28 last time, 24 this), the average length increases; here, take out the two novellas previously published as independent hardcovers (Michael Swanwick's Griffin's Egg and Frederik Pohl's Outnumbering the Dead) and the short-story version of Arthur C. Clarke's latest novel, The Hammer of Gold (p. 492), and 1992's Best SF begins to look decidedly hyperbolic. Read full book review >
GOLDEN TRILLIUM by Andre Norton
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 15, 1993

"A satisfying installment, independently intelligible, with at least one more (from Bradley) still to come."
Third in the fantasy series following Black Trillium (1990, coauthored by Marion Zimmer Bradley, Julian May, and Norton) and Blood Trillium (1992, by May solo). Read full book review >

THE BOOK OF THE MAD by Tanith Lee
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 5, 1993

"Sheer enchantment."
The culmination of Lee's horror-fantasy tetralogy (The Book of the Dead, 1992, etc.). Read full book review >
THE GATES OF NOON by Michael Scott Rohan
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1993

"Hard-working and different, with tons of local color, bustle, and noise: sometimes humidly suffocating, equally often dazzling."
Sequel to Chase the Morning (not seen): a strange, hectic fantasy with an exotic Far East setting and more weird beasties than you can shake a stick at. Read full book review >
POWERS THAT BE by Anne McCaffrey
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1993

"A felicitous combination of authors, rather better indeed than either contributor's recent solo efforts."
Well-handled far-future speculation on ecological engineering and planetary consciousness, from McCaffrey (Damia's Children, etc.) and Scarborough (Last Refuge). Read full book review >
SHADOW HUNTER by Will Baker
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1993

"Sweeping and imaginative, although this promises more than it delivers: a futuristic vision so vast that characters seem lost, with more shadow than substance."
Baker (the story collection What A Piece of Work, 1992, etc.) here weighs in with a hefty but hollow saga of a world in crisis- -with Homo sapiens opposed by virtually every living organism on the planet in a desperate bid for survival. Read full book review >
LOST WORLD II by Márcio Souza
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1993

"While the subject matter might not garner a wide readership, this might be the critical success that brings Souza the recognition his style and imagination clearly deserve."
In this baroque literary farce, Brazilian author Souza (Death Squeeze, 1992—not reviewed; etc.) employs an elegant, amusing, mock 19th-century style to spin a fabulistic, academic ``sequel of sorts'' to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Lost World. Read full book review >
DOUBLE FAULT by Jack M. Bickham
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: July 1, 1993

"Altogether a bloated, mediocre farrago; Brad Smith isn't the first spook to look threadbare in the absence of reliable, Evil Empire KGB opposition."
Former tennis champ, Vietnam grunt, and CIA stringer Brad Smith (Breakfast at Wimbledon, 1991, etc.) finds himself harried by homicidally traumatized Vietnam combat vets. Read full book review >
THE HAMMER OF GOD by Arthur C. Clarke
SCIENCE FICTION & FANTASY
Released: June 15, 1993

"Stretched mighty thin—despite padding with docudrama snippets—but agreeably handled and sturdily credible."
Expansion of a short story (published in a fall 1992 issue of Time magazine) about the possibility of an asteroid colliding with Earth. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Bill Browder
author of RED NOTICE
March 24, 2015

Bill Browder’s Red Notice is a nonfiction political thriller about an American financier in the Wild East of Russia, the murder of his principled young tax attorney, and his mission to expose the Kremlin’s corruption. In 2007, a group of Russian law enforcement officers raided Browder’s offices in Moscow and stole $230 million of taxes that his fund’s companies had paid to the Russian government. Browder’s attorney Sergei Magnitsky investigated the incident and uncovered a sprawling criminal enterprise. A month after Sergei testified against the officials involved, he was arrested and thrown into pre-trial detention, where he was tortured for a year. On November 16, 2009, he was led to an isolation chamber, handcuffed to a bedrail, and beaten to death by eight guards in full riot gear. “It may be that ‘Russian stories never have happy endings,’ ” our reviewer writes about Red Notice, “but Browder’s account more than compensates by ferociously unmasking Putin’s thugocracy.” View video >