Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Two New Reviews at SFFWorld - Vampire Earth and Themed Anthology

Another week, and two more reviews at SFFWorld. As usual, one of the reviews is mine. The other review is from long-time forum member and a forum leader in our writing forum, Dan Bieger.

I reviewed the latest volume of one of the more consistent long-standing SF series, E.E. Knight’s Vampire Earth - Winter Duty.

One element that has made the series so much fun to follow is the characters Valentine encounters throughout his travels. With each novel, Knight further fleshes out this future apocalyptic world and lends more plausibility and depth to it – everything is connected and comes together organically. As a fan of the series since the first book, Way of the Wolf I was pleased to see the return of Duvalier who was sort of an enigma since her first appearance. The history between her and Valentine is hinted at in such away to keep longtime readers wanting to see them become closer. On the other hand, Knight hints at enough for readers picking up Winter Duty as their first Vampire Earth novel to encourage them to seek the earlier books in the series.

The main plot is relatively linear throughout the story, but it holds up very well as Knight further explores this blasted future. Valentine deals with a reputation that precedes him and the author’s strength, in addition to the memorable characters, is providing great action scenes of battle as well as the encounters Valentine has with Reapers, the Kurian’s vampire army, and other nasties the Kurians have conjured to keep humanity under their heel.

Dan reviewed the Denise Little-edited anthology Intelligent Design. DAW publishes a themed anthology about once per month. Here’s a snapshot of what Dan thought of the book:
Start with the cover design consisting of various color exposures of linked Hasbro monkeys. Stir in Little’s intention to explore “that fascinating border that requires using our senses, and the evidence, and everything science can teach us, to explore the nature, or lack thereof, of the divine.” The result is eleven stories dealing with aspects of creation versus evolution, most with tongue in cheek.

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