I wish I had the good taste and self-restraint to only post mixes of “good” music, or music that I really like. But unfortunately I don’t, and here’s the proof: fifteen tracks of dubious quality on a science fiction theme. I love science fiction, but this mix is pretty awful. (My apologies to the artists.) […]

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These are not reviews — more like reading notes. Title: The Atrocity Exhibition Author: J. G. Ballard Published: 1970 The Atrocity Exhibition was originally published in 1970, but it was shredded by a distraught Nelson Doubleday, or so the story goes. It was published again by Grove in ’72 under a different title, and then […]

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Title: The Speed of Dark Author: Elizabeth Moon Published: 2002 So here’s a book that I enjoyed despite some glaring deficiencies. It’s the tale of a young autistic man. He’s high-functioning with a genius aptitude for pattern recognition, so he’s gainfully employed. In fact he’s part of a whole unit of autistic employees at some […]

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Title: Glasshouse Author: Charles Stross Published: 2006 There’s usually a point in most novels where I feel the hook, where I no longer feel the effort of pushing forward and making myself read, but suddenly (or not so suddenly) find myself being pulled forward, intrigued, under the spell. I’ve noticed this usually happens somewhere around […]

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Title: James Tiptree, Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon Author: Julie Phillips Published: 2006 If you go to the American Museum of Natural History in New York, you can see a huge gorilla beating its breast. It’s stuffed of course. It was shot on Mount Karisimbi in the Belgian Congo in November of […]

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Title: Her Smoke Rose Up Forever Author: James Tiptree, Jr. Published: 1969-1981 He wails voicelessly as conviction invades him, he who had believed in nothing before. All the agonies of Earth, uncanceled? Are broken ghosts limping forever from Stalingrad and Salamis, from Gettysburg and Thebes and Dunkirk and Khartoum? Do the butchers’ blows still fall […]

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Every month, the Octavia Science Fiction Club meets at Octavia Books. Our reading selections are chosen by our members on a rotating basis, organized around a loose theme. Most recently we read three books on the theme of “Treachery.” You can get any of these books from Octavia Books by clicking the links. Note that […]

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For the last century, almost all top political appointments [on the planet Earth] had been made by random computer selection from the pool of individuals who had the necessary qualifications. It had taken the human race several thousand years to realize that there were some jobs that should never be given to the people who […]

Read More → Screaming & Kicking