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Thursday, May 20, 2010

Haul of Books 2010: Stuff For Me v.8

I only have a few more pictures left before hitting a long wall of silence on this feature. I don't buy books terribly often, just in large quantities, and I don't expect to add many more books to my library in the next few months. This volume involves some books I discovered a week or so ago at Books-a-Million, some stuff I bought for an independent study I'm working on, some things I won, and some things I discovered at the Friends of the Library book sale (the second one I've gone to, though I didn't buy as much this time).

So, here's the picture:
And the books are, from left to right, top to bottom (descriptions taken from and Wyrm Publishing):

1. Tides of the New Worlds by Tobias S. Buckell (signed limited edition; independent study)
Caribbean born novelist Tobias Buckell established himself as a gifted new voice in science fiction with his stunning first novel Crystal Rain. Now, in his first collection, Buckell demonstrates his strengths in the short form, offering readers a collection of stories that are compelling, smart, wonderfully imagined, and entertaining.

Tides from the New Worlds contains 19 stories that range from multicultural science fiction to magical realism, some in print for the first time.

Table of Contents:

* Fish Merchant
* Anakoinosis
* Aerophilia
* In The Heart of Kalikuata
* The Shackles of Freedom (with Mike Resnick)
* Shoah Sry (with Ilsa Bick)
* Her
* In Orbite Medievali
* Four Eyes
* Trinkets
* Spurn Babylon
* Death's Dreadlocks
* Smooth Talking
* Tides
* Something In The Rock
* A Green Thumb
* All Her Children Fought
* Necahual
* Toy Planes
2. Sly Mongoose by Tobias S. Buckell (signed first edition; independent study)
Welcome to Chilo, a planet with corrosive rain, crushing pressure, and deadly heat. Fortunately, fourteen-year-old Timas lives in one of the domed cities that float 100,000 feet above the surface, circling near the edge of a monstrous perpetual storm. Above the acidic clouds the temperature and pressure are normal. But to make a living, Timas like many other young men, is lowered to the surface in an armored suit to scavenge what he can.

Timas’s life is turned upside down when a strange man crash lands on the city. The newcomer is fleeing an alien intelligence intent on invading the planet and discovering the secret hidden deep inside the perpetual storm—a secret that could lead to interplanetary war.

As the invaded cities fall silent one by one, Chilo’s citizens must race against time to stop the enemy. And Timas will find out what kind of man he has become in the harsh conditions of Chilo’s surface.
3. Ragamuffin by Tobias S. Buckell (signed first edition; independent study)
The Benevolent Satrapy rule an empire of forty-eight worlds, linked by thousands of wormholes strung throughout the galaxy. Human beings, while technically “free,” mostly skulk around the fringes of the Satrapy, struggling to get by. The secretive alien Satraps tightly restrict the technological development of the species under their control. Entire worlds have been placed under interdiction, cut off from the rest of the universe.

Descended from the islanders of lost Earth, the Ragamuffins are pirates and smugglers, plying the lonely spaceways around a dead wormhole. For years, the Satraps have tolerated the Raga, but no longer. Now they have embarked on a campaign of extermination, determined to wipe out the unruly humans once and for all.

But one runaway woman may complicate their plans. Combat enabled, Nashara is more machine than flesh, and she carries inside her a doomsday weapon that could reduce the entire galaxy to chaos. A hunted fugitive, she just wants to get home before she’s forced to destroy civilization---and herself.
4. Crystal Rain by Tobias S. Buckell (signed first edition; independent study)
Long ago, so the stories say, the old-fathers came to Nanagada through a worm’s hole in the sky. Looking for a new world to call their own, they brought with them a rich mélange of cultures, religions, and dialects from a far-off planet called Earth. Mighty were the old-fathers, with the power to shape the world to their liking---but that was many generations ago, and what was once known has long been lost. Steamboats and gas-filled blimps now traverse the planet, where people once looked up to see great silver cities in the sky.

Like his world, John deBrun has forgotten more than he remembers. Twenty-seven years ago, he washed up onto the shore of Nanagada with no memory of his past. Although he has made a new life for himself among the peaceful islanders, his soul remains haunted by unanswered questions about his own identity.

These mysteries take on new urgency when the fearsome Azteca storm over the Wicked High Mountains in search of fresh blood and hearts to feed their cruel, inhuman gods. Nanagada’s only hope lies in a mythical artifact, the Ma Wi Jung, said to be hidden somewhere in the frozen north. And only John deBrun knows the device’s secrets, even if he can’t remember why or how!

Crystal Rain is the much-anticipated debut novel by one of science fiction’s newest and most promising talents.
5. Canal Dreams by Iain Banks (book sale)
By the author of "The Wasp Factory" and "Walking on Glass", this book is set in Japan and on the Panama Canal. It concerns a world famous Japanese cellist, who refuses to fly, and as a result finds herself involved in the ominous realm of global "realpolitik".|Hisako Onoda, world famous cellist, refuses to fly. And so she travels to Europe as a passenger on a tanker bound through the Panama Canal. But Panama is a country whose politics are as volatile as the local freedom fighters. When Hisako's ship is captured, it is not long before the atmosphere is as flammable as an oxy-acetylene torch, and the tension as sharp as the spike on her cello. CANAL DREAMS is a novel of deceptive simplicity and dark, original power: stark psychological insights mesh with vividly realised scenarios in an ominous projection of global realpolitik. The result is yet another major landmark in the quite remarkable career of an outstanding modern novelist.|'Apocalyptic is the first word that springs to mind to describe this violent and powerful novel in which Banks once again demonstrates his extraordinary dark powers of imagination.impressive' - THE TIMES|Iain Banks came to widespread and controversial public notice with the publication of his first novel, THE WASP FACTORY, in 1984. He has been a hugely popular writer of fiction ever since, and, as Iain M Banks, of science fiction.
6. The Dragon Book edited by Jack Dann and Gardner Dozois
Never before published stories by New York Times bestselling authors Jonathan Stroud, Gregory Maguire, Garth Nix, Diana Gabaldon, and others.

Whether portrayed as fire-breathing reptilian beasts at war with humanity or as noble creatures capable of speech and mystically bonded to the warriors who ride them, dragons have been found in nearly every culture's mythology. In modern times, they can be found far from their medieval settings in locales as mundane as suburbia or as barren as post-apocalyptic landscapes-and in The Dragon Book, today's greatest fantasists reignite the fire with legendary tales that will consume readers' imaginations.

With original stories by New York Times bestselling authors Jonathan Stroud, Gregory Maguire, Garth Nix, Diana Gabaldon, Tamora Pierce, Harry Turtledove, Sean Williams, and Tad Williams as well as tales by Naomi Novik, Peter Beagle, Jane Yolen, Adam Stemple, Cecelia Holland, Kage Baker, Samuel Sykes, Diana Wynne Jones, Mary Rosenblum, Tanith Lee, Andy Duncan, and Bruce Coville.
7. Dreamsongs: Volume II by George R. R. Martin
Dubbed “the American Tolkien” by Time magazine, #1 New York Times bestselling author George R.R. Martin is a giant in the field of fantasy literature and one of the most exciting storytellers of our time. Now he delivers a rare treat for readers: a compendium of his shorter works, all collected into two stunning volumes, that offer fascinating insight into his journey from young writer to award-winning master.

Whether writing about werewolves, wizards, or outer space, George R.R. Martin is renowned for his versatility and expansive talent, highlighted in this dazzling collection. Included here, in Volume II, are acclaimed stories such as the World Fantasy Award-winner “The Skin Trade,” as well as the first novella in the Ice and Fire universe, “The Hedge Knight,” plus two never-before-published screenplays. Featuring extensive author commentary, Dreamsongs, Volume II; is an invaluable chronicle of a writer at the height of his creativity—and an unforgettable reading experience for fans old and new.
8. The Emerald Storm by Michael J. Sullivan (won)
Ex-mercenary Hadrian Blackwater sets course on a high seas adventure to find the lost Heir of Novron. His only hope lies in confronting the ruthless and cunning Merrick Marius. Fearing his friend is not up to the challenge, Royce Melborn joins his old partner for one last mission. Their journey finds them adrift amid treachery and betrayals forcing Hadrian to face a past he hoped never to see again.
9. What the Dickens: The Story of a Rogue Tooth Fairy by Gregory Macguire (book sale)
A terrible storm is raging, and Dinah is huddled by candlelight with her brother, sister, and cousin Gage, who is telling a very unusual tale. It’s thestory of What-the-Dickens, a newly hatched orphan creature who finds he has an attraction to teeth, a crush on a cat named McCavity, and a penchant for getting into trouble. One day he happens upon a feisty girl skibberee working as an Agent of Change — trading coins for teeth — and learns of a dutiful tribe of tooth fairies to which he hopes to belong. As his tale unfolds, however, both What-the-Dickens and Dinah come to see that the world is both richer and far less sure than they ever imagined.
10. K-PAX by Gene Brewer (book sale)
When a man who claims to be from outer space is brought into the Manhattan Institute, the mental ward seems to be just the place for him. However, this patient is unlike anyone psychiatrist Dr. Gene Brewer has met before. Clever, inscrutable and utterly charismatic, Robert Porter calls himself 'prot' and has no traceable background - but he claims that he is an inhabitant of the planet K-PAX, a perfect world without wars, government or religion, and where every being co-exists in harmony. It's not long before the other patients are hanging on prot's every word. And even Dr Brewer starts to find himself convinced.
So, anything of interest here?

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