November 21, 2017

Review: Vigilantes by Kristine Katherine Rusch

On sale now…

Ready for some legal action of astronomical proportions? This week, as part of our campaign to wrap up some of the review books we received last summer after our return back to Florida from our great American road trip, we’re reviewing Vigilantes out from WMG Publishing by prolific author Kristine Kathryn Rusch. This is a novel set in her Retrieval Artist universe, and book six in the eight part Anniversary Day saga. [Read more...]

Review: Universe Between Edited by Dean Wesley Smith

On sale now!

Note: once we’d returned from our travelling expedition last month, we arrived to an expected stack of review books from the past year. Though our current writing obligations demand that we can’t go full tilt back in the world of book reviewing, we thought we’d crank out the current stack we found on our doorstep as part of our summer reading. As a writer of both fiction and non-fiction ourselves, we feel that just about every book deserves a fair shake, especially if someone gave us the privilege and obligation to read and review em!

The fantastic is often were you find it. Adventure awaits in the realm of the very small, the very large, and in time frames too fast or slow to be perceptible to the human eye. We always love the idea that the strange and wonderful is always riding side-by-side with us through life, if we only know where to look for it… [Read more...]

Review: Skirmishes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Available for pre-order now!

Boss is back!

We have to admit; when this week’s review copy arrived last week, we HAD to bump it to the very top of our “must read” list!

The Diving Universe, conceived buy Hugo-Award winning author Kristine Catherine Rusch is a refreshingly new and fleshed out realm of sci-fi action and adventure. And the latest offering from the Diving Universe, titled Skirmishes out next month from WMG Publishing, doesn’t disappoint. [Read more...]

Review: Snipers by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Out in July!

Where would you head if you could go back in time? Does time flow in a linear fashion like a river, or are an enormous number of universes branching off from every instant?

OK, so maybe you can’t go back and become your own grandfather or grandmother… but just how much would our actions alter time? That’s just one of the questions posed in this week’s review, Snipers by Kristine Kathryn Rusch. Fans of this space will be familiar with Rusch’s outstanding work in the Diving into the Wreck universe, including City of Ruins & Boneyards as well as the Retrieval Artist novel Blowback. Rusch knows how to construct a science fiction thriller that’ll keep you turning pages right up until the end. [Read more...]

Review: Blowback by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Audible Edition on sale now!

Technology is a Pandora’s Box. Once you put something out there into the universe, you never can predict the manner in which people or (other sentient species) will use it. Or in the case of this week’s review, how it’ll come back to haunt you. This week, we look at Blowback by Kristine Kathryn Rusch, the 9th book in the Retrieval Artist series out in December from WMG Publishing. Fans of this space will recall our reviews of Rusch’s excellent Diving universe series, including Diving into the Wreck, City of Ruins and Boneyards. Rusch is an excellent world builder, and we especially enjoy the refreshing new universes she utilizes along with the engaging characters that populate them.

Blowback deals with the fallout and the aftermath of the Anniversary Day attacks on Earth’s Moon. We thought it elegant and fitting that the Earth Alliance has a Port named Armstrong on the Moon; hopefully it’ll be in or near the real series of craters named after the Apollo 11 astronauts. The book takes a fascinating turn into an alien underworld as Retrieval Artist extraordinaire Miles Flint returns along with his daughter Talia to uncover a plot that may dwarf the initial Anniversary Day attacks. This is juxtaposed against interplanetary politics and efforts by the Moon’s Chief Security officer Noelle DeRicci to hold an uneasy United Domes government coalition together. We always like our intergalactic politics as truly alien, and Rusch delivers the goods. Its one thing to depict members of a Federation whining about treaties, quite another to depict motivations that are truly, well, alien.

And speaking of which, there’s another excellent twist to think about as depicted in the book; the psychology of alien criminals. While it’s easy to depict their motivations as similar to our own (in fact, science fiction serves as a sort of “modern day mythos” in this fashion), Blowback offers another tier of realism by giving alien criminals often inscrutable goals and motives. Which raises the question; what is a crime? While it’s arguable that an alien civilization will by necessity be subject to the same crucible of evolution and have to come up with laws against murder, stealing, etc in order to co-exist, how those might apply to outsiders and differ in more sophisticated concepts is less clear. While Blowback and the Retrieval Artist series touches on these issues, perhaps there’s healthy fodder for Law & Order: Alpha Centauri out there in the sci-fi universe?

But as usual, we digress. Do give Blowback a read. We’d like to point out that the author has an excerpt of the book up on her site for the month of November, and puts featured chapters of her work up every month. We have to admit that we’re a newcomer to the series, but may have to dig in to the earlier books. Blowback does stand on its own as a great read!

Note: A complete listing of Tales of the Retrieval Artist universe can be found here.

Review: Boneyards by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

On sale now!!!

Never get between a gal and her anacapa drive… this week, we take a look at book three and the final (?) installment from the Diving into the Wreck series, Boneyards, out this month from Pyr Books and written by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.  Fans of the series and this space will remember our review of the City of Ruins installment which saw Boss and her team discovering a fully functional (and crewed?) Dignity Vessel in a depot buried deep within the bowels of a planet. [Read more...]

Review: City of Ruins by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.

Out in May from Pyr Books!

Sometimes, the greatest science fiction adventures above take place in the realms below. This week, we’ll give you a sneak peek at Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s City of Ruins out from Pyr Books next month. Fans of this space will remember the first book in the series, Diving into the Wreck reviewed last year. In this much anticipated sequel, we follow Boss and team as they explore what may be their biggest find yet; a labyrinth of ancient caverns beneath the surface of the planet Vaycehn that hint at the vaunted Stealth Technology of the ancient Dignity Vessels. Boss, a loner at heart, has expanded her team out of necessity and, as in the first novel, runs perilously close in balancing her love of exploring ancient Dignity Vessels with not attracting the attention of the Empire, who would love to exploit Stealth Technology to their own ends. Such a discovery would, of course, tip the precarious political balance that is in place, allowing one side to dominate.

Ruins places Boss and crew both in and out of their element at the same time; if Diving into the Wreck was deep-sea diving placed in deep space, then City of Ruins is science fiction spelunking with a high tech twist. Boss is familiar with the ancient technology of the Dignity Vessels but the subterranean environment is as bizarre and strange to her as it is to us as we explore it along with her. The natives of Vaycehn are less than helpful to her cause and apathetic at best, but of course the caverns and the malfunctioning technology play no small part in the mysterious “death holes” that are tearing their world asunder.

I won’t add any spoilers to the book; (read it; it’s that good!) But let’s just say that Stealth Tech and the Dignity Vessels aren’t what they appear to be, as Boss and crew are about to get a cosmic history lesson up close and personal. The Diving universe is along the lines of a future Diaspora-style tale, a universe thousands of years in the future were humanity has populated the cosmos and Earth is but a distant memory. Frank Herbert’s Dune series and Mike Resnick’s Starship saga also fit the bill.

The book fits well as a second act of a trilogy, as the ending leaves several unanswered questions and sets the scene for a sequel. Is history always what we’re told? City of Ruins frames this question well…with engaging characters to boot. Boss maybe one of the most enduring science fiction heroines of recent memory, a Han Solo-type that’s down to business (her ship is named Nobody’s Business, in fact!) and a reluctant player on the galactic scene of building political intrigue…onward to book three!

Can’t get enough of Boss and crew? In addition to the two full length books, tales of the Diving Universe have also graced the pages of Asimov’s December 2005, April/May 2008, April/May 2009, and October/November 2010 respectively. A new tale, Becalmed, is set to appear in Asimov’s this year.      

Review: Alien Pregnant by Elvis Edited by Ester M. Friesner and Martin H. Greenberg.

  

A Sci-Fi Classic!

Its gotta be true, it’s in print, right? This week, we dig back into the Astroguyz science fiction library of the strange and curious to bring you Alien Pregnant by Elvis, an anthology of 36 tabloid inspired tales that could have sprung right from the supermarket checkout line. From a Martian memorial to Elvis to 2,437 (who counted ‘em?) UFOs sighted over New Hampshire, it’s all here in tales woven in a stranger-than-fiction fashion. [Read more...]

June 2010: Life in the Astro-Blogosphere.

 

A Curious "One Belted" Jupiter! (Photo by Author).

A Curious "One Belted" Jupiter! (Photo by Author).

  

   Summer is upon us, as most backyard astronomers begin to look forward to “crossing the hump” of the summer solstice. You won’t know it until fall, but the nighttime starts slooooowly creeping back into the northern hemisphere this month. What follows is a gathering of all things astronomical and what you can expect to see on the Astroguyz collective radar in the coming month; [Read more...]

Review: Diving into the Wreck by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.


There’s an old sci-fi horror cliche that says “In space, no one can hear you scream…” This oft quoted phrase is frequently attributed to the first Alien movie, but I would bet that you can trace its roots further back into the sci-fi genre. Enter Diving into the Wreck by Kristine Kathryn Rusch and out next month courtesy of Pyr books. Rusch’s works include the Escape Artist series, and she holds the distinction of being the only person to win a Hugo Award for both editing and fiction writing, a tall order, indeed! [Read more...]

October 2009: Life in the AstroBlog-o-Sphere.

(Editor’s note: If case you haven’t noticed, we’re shaking things up here a bit at Astroguyz. Specifically, our news bits have gone to a daily affair, to allow for more nimble and timely coverage. It’s a swiftly changing world out there in the realm of space blogging, and Astroguyz is right there with you! Our monthly news round up will instead be a sneak peak at the month ahead, some bits old and some new. Read on…

Coming to an October Sky near you: This month, all telescopes will be turned on the south pole of the Moon on the 9th as the Delta Centaur upper stage known as LCROSS slams into the lunar surface. Will anything be visible? The only sure way to know is to look! The Harvest Full Moon, a rarity for October, arrives this month on the 4th. [Read more...]