Small House of Everything

Small House of Everything

Monday, November 13, 2017

INCOMING


  • Douglas Adams, The Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts.  As the title suggests, these are the original scripts for The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy.  The book covers the first two series (a total of twelve episodes, or "fits") aired by the BBC in 1978 and 1980.  Did you know that mystery writer Simon Brett produced the first episode of the series?  I did, but then I'm a genius fanboy.
  • Marion Zimmer Bradley, Survey Ship.  Stand-alone science fiction novel.  "Six of Earth's finest young people, perfect in mind and body, have been trained from cradle for one task -- to brave the infinite dangers of space, to find new homes for Man.  But once alone in the pitiless universe, they are betrayed by their ship and plagued by space hazards; their voyage becomes a grim test of survival..To survive they must tame their wild talents.  to survive, they must turn their training into skill, with no margin for error.  To survive, they must conquer their fears, longings and nightmares.  They must become a team.  they must learn how to love.  Or they die."
  • Natsuo Kirino, Out.  Crime novel.  'this mesmerizing novel tells the story of a brutal murder in the staid Tokyo suburbs, as a young mother who works the night shift making boxed lunches strangles her abusive husband and then seeks the help of her coworkers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime.  The coolly intelligent Masako emerges as the plot's ringleader but quickly discovers that this killing is merely the beginning, as it leads to a terrifying foray into the violent underbelly of Japanese society."  Winner of Japan's Grand Prix for Crime Fiction and an Edgar Award finalist.  Translated by Stephen Snyder.
  • Richard Laymon, Into the Fire and Island.  Both horror novels.  About Into the Fire:  "Pretty, young Pamela was a very happy newlywed, with a loving husband and a beautiful home.  But all that changed the night Rodney broke in.  He's been obsessed with Pamela since high school, and now he intends to make her his slave for life.  He thinks they'll be alone when he drives her out to the blazing desert.  But someone else is out there too -- someone with a gun.  Pamela hoped her nightmare was over when Rodney was shot, but something about her rescuer isn't quite right."  In Island, when "Rupert Conway set out on a cruise with seven other people, he planned to swim a little, get some sun and relax.  He certainly didn't plan to get shipwrecked.  but after the yacht blew up, that's what happened -- he and his shipmates were stranded on a desert island.  Luckily for them, the island has plenty of fresh water and enough food to last until they get rescued.  And luckily for Rupert, most of his fellow castaways are attractive women.  But that's where his luck ran out -- because the castaways aren't alone on the island.  In the dense jungle beyond the beach there's a maniac on the loose, a killer with a murderous heart, a clever mind, and a taste for blood.  He doesn't like his new neighbors and he plans to slaughter them all...one by one."  For some reason I can't fathom, Laymon was always more popular in England than in his native U.S.  An author always worth reading.
  • Andre Norton & Lyn McConchie, Beast Master's Ark.  SF novel, third in the series about Hosteen Storm, the Beast Master, and the first in series written with (and most likely, by) McConchie.  "Best Master Hosteen Storm has endured great perils to carve out a life for himself on Arzor, the colony planet he's called home since th destruction of Earth by the alien Xik.  On a planet with alien life forms and untold secrets from its pre-human past, there are always dangers in the world, especially in the vast desert and mountain region known as Big Blue.  but nobody has ever experiences a threat like the devastating scourge the natives call Death-Which-Comes-in-the Night.  Something is killing grazing animals...and has begun to attack humans as well, leaving nothing behind but the bones of its victims.  Hosteen, aided by his telepathically linked animals, knows that if he can't stop the killings Arzor will be decimated.  his only ally is a young woman who has beast master ability, but was raised to mistrust others with such a power.  At stake is the safety of ll those on Arzor, and on other colony planets as well.  Because Death-Which-Comes-in-the-Night is a scourge that if not stopped, could spread..."  Norton published the first Beast Master book in 1959, followed by the second in 1962.  It took forty years the next book in the series to appear, followed by a fourth in 2004 and a fifth in 2006; these three were all co-authored by McConchie, who won the Sir Julius Vogel award of Best Novel for New Zealand science fiction and fantasy for Beast Master's Ark.  (This was the first of six Vogel Awards that she has won.)  

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