The Phoenix on the Sword

Conan short stories ; 1 All I know about Conan comes from the Arnie film, so it was surprise to read this and come across Conan already a king. But this is the first Conan story, in publication order, his history was later filled in by Howard in other stories and tales. Although I am […]

His last bow

Containing – “The Adventure of Wisteria Lodge” (1908), “The Adventure of the Cardboard Box” (1892), “The Adventure ,of the Red Circle” (1911), “The Adventure of the Bruce-Partington Plans” (1908), “The Adventure of the Dying Detective” (1913), “The Disappearance of Lady Frances Carfax” (1911), “The Adventure of the Devil’s Foot” (1910), and, “His Last Bow. An […]

The scandal

also published as Beartown I was going to say that I recently read Backman’s breakout novel A man called Over, but then I checked the blog and discovered that it was back in 2015! well I suppose that’s very recent if you are talking about the age of the world. Ove was a book club […]

An oil strike is visible in the distance, the soil is red and barren.

Killers of the Flower Moon

If you want to read a book that’ll really show how horrific people can be to one another then this is it. It tells the story of the murders of Mollie Burkhart’s family. They were all members of the Osage tribe; in the 1920s they were among the richest people in the world. And yet […]

A hooded male figure, clad in grey stands with arms crossed in a threatening? manner in front of a swirling background

City of stairs

I don’t think I would have picked this book up at all if it hadn’t been nominated for a Hugo this year. The trilogy The Divine Cities is nominated in the Best Series category, and I am attempting to read at least one book in each series before voting.1 I am so glad that this […]

Small changes over long periods of time : a novelette by K. M. Sparza

Small changes over long periods of time

First published by Uncanny A Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy in May 2017. Finley has just been bitten by a vampire. Now he has to deal with becoming a vampire himself, and an unregistered one at that. He certainly didn’t ask to be turned, and most definitely never filled out the proper paperwork. Plus […]

A figure is seen mostly from the back, going up a stairs, red/peach and white koi (I think) on the walls

Extracurricular Activities

The Machinaries of Empire Although this novelette is part of the larger Machinaries ‘verse, you can read it without any knowledge of that wider world as it is a prequel. So it also contains no spoilers, unless you count getting to know a character before they appeared in Ninefox Gambit a spoiler… It features Shuos […]

A John Wayne type man, viewed from the back, looks at a woman

The turkeyfeather riders

A collection of five short stories by the classic western author Louis L’Amour. And by classic I mean the idealised version where men were men1 and sometimes a man had to do what a man had to do. And usually that would end in the death of other men. But they weren’t good, manly men. […]

line drawing of spaceships in green

Questions for a soldier

Old Man’s War ; 1.5 This is a short read, a question and answer session between John Perry from Old Man’s War and a some citizens of New Goa, one of the colonies that Perry visits as part of a goodwill tour. Talking about where he came from and what it is to be a […]

a helmet shaped crown.

The king beyond the gate

The Drenai Saga ; 2 David Gemmell is a big name in epic fantasy, and over the years I’ve read one or two by him. The most memorable being his version of Alexander the Great where he was possessed by a demon. At least I’m pretty sure he was the author of that book I […]

The lives of Tao

I added this book to my TBR pile way back in 2016 when the author talked about pitting his character against Rand from the Wheel of Time series. Usually I’m not really a fan of those “who would win if they fought” debates. Mainly because why would they fight seems to me the more interesting […]