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ABOUT THE STORE : NEWSLETTER
DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News from Borderlands Books
Chapter One - Event Information, News, and Special Features
Upcoming Author Events
Borderlands takes an "event hiatus" in between Thanksgiving and the
new year, so things will be quiet around here until early 2011.
However, keep an eye out for oodles of awesome authors next year!
Ah, December! A chill in the air, spiced cider at Borderlands
Cafe, and cranky hairless cats who refuse to leave their comfy heating
pads. The time of year when one's thoughts often turn, somewhat
frantically, to presents. Well, we're here to help. It's no
secret that the economy's kind of, well, crappy, and so we'd like to
mention that books are by far the very best entertainment value for
your dollar. Especially if your friends read sorta slowly.
At Borderlands we have presents for every budget and almost every
taste. We're delighted to make suggestions, and we relish the
challenges, so bring 'em on! Meanwhile, here are our opinions on
great gift options to delight those close to you.
Caveat: All reviews by Jude unless otherwise stated.
Brandy-New Shiny Hardcovers:
SURFACE DETAIL by Iain M. Banks (Orbit, Hardcover, $25.99) - The new
Culture novel raises some heavy questions -- do cultures need
religions? Is the threat of punishment the only thing that keeps
most people behaving in a societally acceptable fashion? If you lose
the memories of your experiences and your suffering, are you still the
same person? -- in the most wild, adventurous,
lots-of-stuff-still-blows-up way possible. This book is packed to
over-stuffed with likable (and thoroughly reprehensible) characters,
witty dialogue and Big Ideas.
ALL CLEAR by Connie Willis (Spectra, Hardcover, $26.00) - The follow-up
to last year's brilliant BLACKOUT, we finally get to find out what
happens to several plucky 23rd century time-travelling graduate
students stuck in London during the Blitz. Willis' ability to get
under her characters' skin and inside their heads is one of her most
endearing strengths, and really shines in these novels. Also the sheer
esteem in which she holds the stoic civilians -- the everyday heroes of
World War II -- is touching and breathtaking, and she communicates her
respect with an incredibly effective but still light touch. Cary
suggests getting both volumes and reading them straight through, since
they were originally intended to be one novel.
FULL DARK, NO STARS by Stephen King (Scribner, Hardcover, $27.99) -
From Alan: "King's newest collection contains four stories (two
novellas and two short stories) with the thematic linkage of ordinary
people in extra-ordinary situations. Moreover, the theme gains
greater depth when one reads in the afterward, 'Bad writing is more
than a matter of shit syntax and faulty observation; bad writing
usually arises from a stubborn refusal to tell stories about what
people actually do -- to face the fact, let us say, that murderers
sometimes help old ladies across the street.' In this series of
stories King presents us with people who don't act exactly the way we
might _want_ them to but who do act the way this is consistent with
their character -- be it making hard choices to avoid a horrible trap,
as in 'A Good Marriage,' or by taking one inexorable step after another
straight down into a personal hell, as in '1922'. He also manages
to create an original 'deal with the Devil' story in 'Fair Extension,'
despite the degree to which that particular patch of ground has been
planted and harvested by authors over the past three hundred
years. In short, FULL DARK, NO STARS is Stephen King is his more
thoughtful form demonstrating a master's touch at pacing, voice and
character. If you like King, buy it. If you're shopping for
someone who likes King, buy it. And you might even consider it
for someone who thinks that King is all about gore, ghouls, and ghosts."
TOWERS OF MIDNIGHT by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson (Tor,
Hardcover, $29.99) - Blessings upon the talented (and happily
incredibly nice) Brandon Sanderson for easing the cravings of Jordan
junkies by delivering the penultimate WHEEL OF TIME novel in a timely
ZERO HISTORY by William Gibson (Putnam, Hardcover, $26.95) - I'm
excited about the return of Hollis Henry and several characters from
SPOOK COUNTRY in this impressive, smart new Gibson novel. This
one, like SPOOK COUNTRY and PATTERN RECOGNITION, is more of a
near-future thriller than a standard science fiction novel, but I love
it for incorporating so many crazy elements, from high fashion to the
military-industrial complex. Additionally, it's funny.
Perfect for the Gibson fan in your life.
KRAKEN by China Mieville (Del Rey, Hardcover, $26.00) - I've said a
bunch of times that this is like a China Mieville novel by way of Neil
Gaiman. I think it's the funniest thing that Mieville's written,
despite the fact that it's about the impossible theft of a giant squid
by a cult that wants to use it to end the world. It's thoroughly
improbable and I adored it, right down to the Warren Ellis-style
digressions about random cool things found on the Internet.
If you'd like to give a signed book to that special someone, we have
signed copies of KILL THE DEAD (Eos, Hardcover, $22.99) by Richard
Kadrey (the follow-up to the incredibly popular SANDMAN SLIM); signed
copies of THE FALL (sequel to THE STRAIN) by Guillermo del Toro and
Chuck Hogan (William Morrow, Hardcover, $26.99); signed copies of OUT
OF THE DARK by David Weber (Tor, Hardcover, $25.99); signed copies of
ANCESTOR by Scott Sigler (Crown, Hardcover, $24.95) and many, many more
Decorous Trade Paperbacks:
FLAMING ZEPPELINS by Joe R. Lansdale (Tachyon Publications, Trade
Paperback, $14.95) FLAMING LONDON and ZEPPELINS WEST in one volume, or,
the Adventures of Ned the Seal. Lansdale was writing Steampunk
before the term was even capitalized, certainly long before silly
hipsters with goggles & Really Unfortunate Facial Hair wandered
Valencia Street. But to pigeonhole this volume as Steampunk is
actually to do it a disservice, as cool as Steampunk is. . . because
these books are completely wild, promiscuously multi-genre,
over-the-top pulpy capers starring characters both real and
fictional. (Wild Bill Hickock, Annie Oakley, the Tin Man,
Frankenstein's monster, Mark Twain & Jules Verne fighting Wells'
Martian invasion. . . plus the unforgettable Ned the Seal!) And
there're zeppelins. What more could you possibly want?
Speaking of Steampunk, if you're concerned that the Steampunk fan
you're trying to find a gift for has read _everything_, I'll bet you a
cup of coffee they haven't yet discovered BURTON & SWINBURNE IN THE
STRANGE AFFAIR OF SPRING-HEELED JACK by Mark Hodder. Set in
London in 1861, it pairs a washed-up Sir Richard Francis Burton with
Algernon Charles Swinburne, failed poet and worse. They
investigate the leaping boogeyman known as Spring-Heeled Jack in a wild
adventure that defies easy description. And since you can't have
too much Steampunk, Tachyon's anthology STEAMPUNK II: STEAMPUNK
RELOADED edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer (Trade Paperback,
$14.95) received a starred review from Publishers Weekly and will make
the week of any fan.
Other fantastic anthologies abound this season as well: NightShade
Books brings us THE LIVING DEAD 2 and BRAVE NEW WORLDS, both edited by
John Joseph Adams (Trade Paperbacks, each $15.99). LIVING DEAD 2
is even more splatter-y than its predecessor, and BRAVE NEW WORLDS is a
kick-ass, thoroughly disquieting anthology of dystopian fiction
including stories by luminaries like J.G. Ballard, Philip K. Dick,
Ursula K. Le Guin, Kim Stanley Robinson and many, many more. In
case you missed them, NightShade also recently published THE IMPROBABLE
ADVENTURES OF SHERLOCK HOLMES (John Joseph Adams, ed, Trade Paperback,
$15.95) WINGS OF FIRE, the ultimate dragon anthology, edited by
Jonathan Strahan and Marianne S. Jablon (Trade Paperback, $15.95), and
SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL edited by Tim Pratt (Trade Paperback, $15.95).
And more with the awesome: WILDCARDS VOL.1 edited by George R.R. Martin
(Tor, Trade Paperback,$15.99) back in print after far, far too long,
now with added original material (which I admittedly have not read yet,
and about which I also admit to being a bit skeptical). WILD
CARDS is a shared-world series telling the secret history in which an
unpredictable alien virus (The Wild Card Virus) struck the Earth in the
aftermath of WWII; killing a large percentage of the population, giving
some (the Aces) fabulous powers, and cursing others (the Jokers) with
bizarre mental or physical disabilities. Deep characters &
amazing inventiveness by a stunning array of authors.
For the science fiction fan in your life, there's VIRGA: CITIES OF THE
AIR by Karl Schroeder (Tor, Trade Paperback, $17.99) which contains the
first two Virga books, SUN OF SUNS and QUEEN OF CANDESCE, in one
omnibus edition. Or you could offer DESOLATION ROAD and ARES
EXPRESS, two mindblowing novels by Ian McDonald (Pyr, Trade Paperbacks,
BEST SERVED COLD by Joe Abercrombie (Orbit, Mass Market, $7.99) - I've
gone on at length about this novel, which is essentially a George R.R.
Martin fantasy crossed with a Sergio Leone revenge Western. So
good! So violent! So blackly comical!
SOULLESS by Gail Carriger (Orbit, Mass Market, $7.99) - It's a
Steampunk Victorian comedy of manners with vampires and
werewolves. And tea and biscuits. Charming, quirky, and
full of snark and regrettable head-wear. Beloved of all at
FEED by Mira Grant (Orbit, Mass Market, $9.99) - What do you get that
friend who loved WORLD WAR Z? FEED by Mira Grant. FEED is a
science fiction zombie story focused on the living: the group of
bloggers following the would-be Republican Presidential candidate
during the primaries. Character-driven, powerful, and unexpected,
FEED is one of my favorite books of the last year.
HUNDRED THOUSAND KINGDOMS by M.K. Jemisin (Orbit, Mass Market, $7.99) -
Extraordinarily complex and exciting fantasy, this is one of the
strongest debuts of the year.
BOOK OF SECRETS by Chris Roberson (Angry Robot, Mass Market, $7.99) -
BOOK OF SECRETS is like a Tim Powers novel crossed with THE DA VINCI
CODE if the THE DA VINCI CODE were a better book. Twisty,
unpredictable and lots of fun.
We have a gorgeous selection of wooden boxes imported from India, pulp
postcards of every stripe and level of outrageousness, and wow, A LOT
of zombie calendars this year.
We're also overflowing with great used paperbacks right now, so for
between $2 and $5 you can give the gift of a beloved, out-of-print
favorite from your past.
The above list showcases some stuff that we're really excited about,
but to reiterate, we're happy, nay, _delighted_ to make recommendations
and suggestions. The hard part is getting us to shut up,
really. Let us know if there's anything we can help you find.
Also, totally unrelated to the above gift suggestions: we know
2010 was a hard year for a lot of people. If the fancy strikes
you, take 2 minutes during this build-up to the holiday craziness to
just take deep breaths and reflect on the good things you have.
Where there's life, there's hope, and likely even some good
cheer. To that end, we wish you hope, peace and all the best in
the New Year.
Top Sellers At Borderlands
1) Towers of Midnight by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
2) Surface Detail by Iain M. Banks
3) Zero History by William Gibson
4) Kill the Dead by Richard Kadrey
5) All Clear by Connie Willis
6)The Starter by Scott Sigler
7) Pegasus by Robin McKinley
8) Painted Boy by Charles de Lint
9) Full Dark, No Stars by Stephen King
10) Cryoburn by Lois McMaster Bujold
1) Soulless by Gail Carriger
2) Gilded Latten Bones by Glen Cook
3) An Artificial Night by Seanan McGuire
4) Echo City by Tim Lebbon
5) Elegy Beach by Steven R. Boyett
6) Wolfsbane by Patricia Briggs
7) Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan
8) Live Free or Die by John Ringo
9) Gathering Storm by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
10) Sandman Slim by Richard Kadrey
1) Fated by S.G. Browne
2) Tearing the Sky by Jamil Moledina
3) The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi
4) Yarn by Jon Armstrong
5) Dreadnought by Cherie Priest
Book Club Info
The QSF&F Book
Club will meet on Sunday, December 12th, at 5 pm to discuss YARN by Jon
Armstrong. Please contact the group leader, Christopher
Rodriguez, at email@example.com, for more information.
The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, December
19th, at 6 pm to discuss MATTER by Iain M. Banks. The book for
January is THE EMPRESS OF MARS by Kage Baker. Please contact
firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Upcoming Event Details
takes an "event hiatus" in between Thanksgiving and the new year, so
things will be quiet around here until early 2011. However, keep
an eye out for oodles of awesome authors next year!
Borderlands event policy - all events are free of charge. You are
welcome to bring copies of an author's books purchased elsewhere to be
autographed (but we do appreciate it if you purchase something while at
the event). For most events you are welcome to bring as many
books as you wish for autographs. If you are unable to attend the
event we will be happy to have a copy of any of the author's available
books signed or inscribed for you. We can then either hold it
until you can come in to pick it up or we can ship it to you.
Just give us a call or drop us an email. If you live out of town,
you can also ship us books from your collection to be signed.
Call or email for details.This newsletter is distributed monthly free
of charge and may be distributed without charge so long all the following
information is included.
Dispatches from the Border
Editor - Jude Feldman
Assistant Editor - Alan Beatts
All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of
866 Valencia St.
San Francisco, CA 94110
Comments and suggestions should be directed to email@example.com
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