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Jonathan Laidlow

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Ian Sales: Then will the Great Ocean Wash Deep Above

Shepard Next to Modular Equipment T

Cover of Then Will The Great Ocean Wash Deep Above by Ian SalesIan Sales’ Apollo Quartet is an award-winning sequence of alternate history novellas which explore different aspects of the twentieth-century space race. (more…)

Andy Weir: The Martian

A view from the "Kimberley" formation on Mars taken by NASA's Curiosity rover.

Cover for Andy Weir - the Martian
The Martian
is an odd book to review. I’m giving it three stars but it could be two or four, depending on what you want from a novel about an astronaut stranded on Mars. The novel does exactly what it sets out to do, the format is laid out very clearly early on, and the plot all comes together very nicely at the end. (more…)

Stephen Palmer: Hairy London

Cover of Hairy London by Stephen PalmerIn an alternate Edwardian age, three upper class gents try to win a bet about the nature of love, while all around them everything goes to hair… (more…)

Paul McAuley: Confluence, in part

Cover for Paul McAuley, Confluence: the TrilogySome time in the year 2000, out of money and the PhD in Shandeana moving further out of reach, I must have decided to try book-reviewing again. Not for money, obviously, but to attempt something creative that wasn’t tied up in the PhD disaster. So I wrote the following piece about the first two volumes of Paul McAuley’s Confluence trilogy. It’s still online at Infinity Plus but I don’t think Keith will mind me reproducing it here in this new blog.

Keith sent me the third volume, Shrine of Stars, to review shortly thereafter, so obviously he thought the quality of my work was okay. I believe he sent a couple of other titles too. I spectacularly failed to review anything else for Infinity Plus.

and it’s still fantastic.The entire trilogy was recently reissued in the UK, in an ebook and print omnibus. I reread the first book again at the end of 2013

(more…)

Lois McMaster Bujold: Memory and Komarr

This review was written in 1998 for Foundation: the International Review of Science Fiction, the academic journal of the Science Fiction Foundation. It was first published  in #74, Autumn 1998. Along with the review of two novels by Lois McMaster Bujold it was my first foray into book reviewing. I’d hoped then to write more, but my PhD studies in Shandeism had to take precedence. (more…)