The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles and authors from around the web.
Peter S. Beagle (photo: Rina Weisman), James Tiptree, Jr., and Ellen Datlow
IN CALABRIA is a modern fairy tale. There are a handful of characters. There are clear-cut lines between good and evil. It is sentimental, but only in the sense that it is about emotions and acting on them. In the end, it’s an upside-down pastoral fantasy, in which for the longest time the constructed ‘reality’ serves to shelter the hero from the sublime, instead of vice versa, Sure, you can decide to read the white unicorn as an elusive dream, as a magical, pure, once-in-a-lifetime thing that you hope for, as ‘that one true love’. But the sheer dizzying mass of indescribable sublime that is the black unicorn stallion really doesn’t fit nicely into metaphorical boxes. Fairy tales are also always about the unconscious. The most effective monsters are the ones generated by our hidden fears—often not just hidden from the outside world, but from ourselves as well. Finally, it is a story about a man who is haunted, and who cannot forgive himself and move on, assign the past to the past and thus exorcise the ghosts. But life goes on, and while you’re busy coping with it, this is what happens: suddenly you find yourself opening your eyes in another time, in another self. Realising that in the meantime somebody has appeared who loves you, unconditionally, as you are. And together you’re stronger than anything.
And it does contain some really good writing.
Because it’s Tiptree we see a lot of anger, a lot of morose inevitability, ideas that investigate gender roles, enslavement, sexuality, and many ideas which don’t just cross the line into the disturbing – it surrounds you completely. Tiptree is abundantly clever with her words, going as far as the narrator telling the reader you can skip this part – when it’s the opposite of true.
I can’t recommend this book enough, and we are so lucky to have had Tiptree in our genre. And to hell with those who outed her, and rejected her work when her alias was uncovered.
(Slight warning that the collection may make you angry (as it has me) for her genius, and what she went through.)
Fantastic Fiction at KGB, a monthly reading series hosted by Ellen Datlow and Matthew Kressel, needs you help and has started a Kickstarter.
Fantastic Fiction at KGB is a monthly reading series hosted by Ellen Datlow and Matthew Kressel. We are looking to fund several more years of our popular Manhattan-based reading series and will be holding a Kickstarter fundraiser from May 17th through June 14th, 2017. We need to raise a minimum of $4500, which will keep us funded for three more years.
Fantastic Fiction at KGB is a monthly science fiction, fantasy, and horror reading series held on the third Wednesday of every month. We aim to promote speculative fiction authors and their forthcoming works. Authors read for about twenty to twenty-five minutes each, and we also sell the authors’ books at the event (currently through Word Bookstore.) The series serves as a salon for writers, editors, agents, and fans to co-mingle in a relaxed environment. Many lasting friendships and professional connections have been made through the Fantastic Fiction reading series. It has been running since the late ‘90s. More on our history below.
Fantastic Fiction at KGB, January 10, 2010 (photo: Drew Rhys White)
Each month we give the authors a small stipend, we tip the bartenders (the bar provides free drinks to the guests), and we take the authors out for dinner after the readings. It costs us around $120 per month, so we need $1500 to maintain the series each year. We are looking to raise $4500, which would allow us to keep the series running for another three years. Each additional $1500 will let us run for an additional year. Fantastic Fiction has been a bright light in the speculative fiction community for nearly two decades, and with the community’s help we can continue for many more years to come. Any donation, no matter how small, is greatly appreciated.
For more info about IN CALABRIA, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover design by Elizabeth Story
For more info about HER SMOKE ROSE UP FOREVER, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by John Picacio