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September – 2017 – - Page 2

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Does it make any sense for these ape-like human ancestors in the opening scene of 2001: A Space Odyssey to “suddenly” be imbued with an understanding of tools by “divine fiat” via the alien artifact? This is a story element that rubs me the wrong way, but given the film’s success and reputation – not […]

Start the fall proper with a round-up of September’s science fiction new releases. *     *     *      *      * A. I. Battle Station (A. I. Series #4) – Vaughn Heppner We defeated the invading death machines. But at a devastating cost, with smoldering radioactive craters on Mars, shattered […]

In my last article, I championed fluff as a force vital to Wargames individually and corporately, but fluff is not all good. The best and most successful Wargame systems are nearly generic, and the more specialized they get, the more constrained they must be in order to be functional—often to the point where they need […]

Robert E. Howard continues to shine as a better model for Lovecraftian gaming than Lovecraft himself.  In Pigeons From Hell, available in its entirety from the Australian Project Gutenberg, two New England hikers stop for the night to make camp inside an abandoned Plantation Home somewhere south of the Mason-Dixon line.  A ghostly face appears […]

Traveller was created and conceived before blockbuster space movies. It’s a product of the ethos running through a great many science fiction novels from the fifties and sixties, so things just don’t play out like what you see in Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, and Star Trek II. A High Guard fleet battle will run for […]

StoryHack Action & Adventure is a fiction magazine in the style of the great pulps of years past. It includes stories from a wide variety of genres. In this issue, you’ll find: “New Rules for Rocket Nauts” by Michael DeCarolis. A recently dismissed recruit watches in horror as an alien race betrays and massacres his former […]

People are long-winded. The art of concision has been lost. In its memory, two concise reviews: Two Star Trek shows debuted this month. The Orville is middling alright. Star Trek: Discovery is a stinking toxic fire in a rubber tire disposal facility spewing thick black plumes of noxious smoke that puts 15 people in the […]

THERE WILL BE WAR is a landmark science fiction anthology series that combines top-notch military science fiction with factual essays by various generals and military experts on everything from High Frontier and the Strategic Defense Initiative to the aftermath of the Vietnam War. It featured some of the greatest military science fiction ever published, such Orson […]

Appendix N (Cirsova) More Fafhrd & Gray Mouser Thoughts — “While there were a couple really good 60s stories in Swords Against Death, I think that the few from the 40s were my favorites. They were great short adventures and each stood nicely on its own. Honestly, the weakest parts (despite the excellent writing) of […]

The year was 1939, little more than a year since John W. Campbell took over the reins of Astounding and John B. Michel declared science fiction dead. But Argosy had not gotten the memo. No, the magazine that had been the stomping grounds of Edgar RIce Burroughs and A. Merritt was not quite ready to […]

This is an excerpt from Moth & Cobweb Book 6, Tithe to Tartarus, Castalia House’s newest release. The entire Moth & Cobweb series, beginning with Swan Knight’s Son, is now available via Kindle and Kindle Unlimited. *     *     *      *      * Yumiko was unwilling to step onto the catwalk because she […]

Last time, when we looked at the first half of Norvell Page’s “When the Death-Bat Flies”: Hirotoyo had lost his smile, “Speak, my friend, and if I can help you….”  “You can,” Dunne said shortly. “Donald Henderson was murdered last night and the death arranged to look like hari-kari. Another associate of his, Paul Tarsus, […]