Tachyon tidbits featuring Daryl Gregory, Tim Powers, Gordon Van Gelder, and Kij Johnson

The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles from around the web.


Daryl Gregory, Tim Powers (photo: Roberta F. via Wikimedia Commons), Gordon Van Gelder (photo: Houari Boumedienne), Kij Johnson (photo: John Kessel via Wikimedia Commons)

Hannah Emery on the SOCIOLOGIST NOVELIST writes about meeting Daryl Gregory at the recent SF IN SF.

And then heard a friendly voice say “So, you’re getting a head start by reading at the reading?”

I don’t remember exactly what I said to Mr. Gregory in response; honestly, I think the first thing was a stammered schoolkid answer along the lines of “no, I promise, I wasn’t reading while you guys were reading!” But then he cracked a joke, and then Husband asked him where in the Bay Area he lived (since he’d mentioned in his intro that he’d recently moved here), and then, suddenly, we were talking about a neighborhood where I’ve got friends, and a coffeeshop there where he goes to write, and the struggles of figuring out exactly how long it takes to drive from one place to another in the metro area with one of the worst commutes in the nation.


Given how I’ve been feeling about my own writing lately (more on that in the last few posts, so I won’t recap here), I think I desperately needed that reminder — that the people behind the books are real people, who live in the real world, and have to deal with getting into San Francisco on a rainy night just like everybody else. And that in many of the ways that matter, the successful aren’t so different from the rest of us.

So thank you, Mr. Gregory, for reaching out; I hope to bump into you around town, and I also hope I’ll have the opportunity to pay your kindness forward someday. If I ever finish this book.


For THE IMAGINARY MUSEUM, Jack Ross explores the novels of Tim Powers including THE STRESS OF HER REGARD.

this one is something special. So dense is the narrative, centering
on Byron and Shelley’s haunted summer (during which his wife’s great
novel FRANKENSTEIN was conceived), that one can hardly follow it at
times. Nor is Powers’ prose style quite up to the task he has set
himself at times, but it remains a kind of masterpiece: a genuinely
frightening and thought-provoking novel with enough inventiveness to
power ten conventional plots. What isn’t in there? I’d rather reread
THE ANUBIS GATES anyday than venture into this one again, but I have
to admit that it scared the shit out of me, and persuaded me that
readers really could take a lot of disruption in their fictional fare
without giving in.

Read Ross’s other comments about Powers at THE IMAGINARY MUSEUM.

Patricia Abbott at SWEET FREEDOM as part of their Friday’s “Forgotten” Books series delivers some links and then comments about THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION and TWILIGHT ZONE magazine.

2009 saw two rather clangorous anniversaries: the 60th anniversary of the founding of THE MAGAZINE OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION, and the half-century anniversary of the first broadcast of THE TWILIGHT ZONE, which among other effects had inspired a magazine that offered a lot of good fiction and more in its run from 1981-1989; it also had a companion magazine, Night Cry, for a few years. F&SF editor and publisher Gordon Van Gelder and TZ magazine co-publisher, and widow of Rod Serling, Carol Serling decided to put together impressive,  fat anthologies, his a retrospective on what his magazine had published, hers an anthology of new stories inspired by the series in some manner, that I’ve been meaning to review for some years, but haven’t gotten around to reading…just dug them out from the stacks as I pack up my old apartment. But this won’t stop me from making a few comments.


The first thing I’d note about [THE VERY BEST OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION: 60TH ANNIVERSARY ANTHOLOGY] is the mostly very sapient choices of stories…whether the almost necessary ones (“All Summer in a Day” from Bradbury, “Harrison Bergeron” from Vonnegut, “One Ordinary Day” from Shirley Jackson, and of course “Flowers for Algernon” from Keyes), but also such less compelled choices as “The Deathbird” from Ellison and “I See You” from Knight…and opting for a Zelazny other than “A Rose for Ecclesiastes”


Amy Sisson discusses the four favorite short stories that she read in February.

“26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss” by Kij Johnson

Length: 4,000 words
Category: Short story (science fiction)
Where Published: ASIMOV’S
When Published: July 2008
Reprinted: THE SECRET HISTORY OF FANTASY (anthology, Tachyon Publications, 2010)
Link (free)

I’m embarrassed that I’m so late to the party on this 2008 story, but so glad I finally read it. Like the Barnett story listed above, the title and structure of “26 Monkeys, Also the Abyss” may call to mind a list story, but that isn’t what this is. Instead, it’s a wistful story about a young woman who runs a traveling show in which a group of performing monkeys literally disappears for the finale every night. It’s one of those stories that seems like it may have originated in a dream. But instead of having the annoying arbitrariness that usually make dreams interesting only to the person who has them, this story kept the dreamlike quality while brewing something rich and meaningful. This story is not to be missed!

For more information on WE ARE ALL COMPLETELY FINE, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover design by Elizabeth Story

For more information on THE STRESS OF HER REGARD, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover by Ann Monn

For more information on THE VERY BEST OF FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION: 60TH ANNIVERSARY ANTHOLOGY, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover art by David A. Hardy

Cover design by Bryan Cholfin

For more information on THE SECRET HISTORY OF FANTASY, visit the Tachyon page.

Cover by Ann Monn