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The sword and sorcery genre has not been well served on film. Some movies get close at times but all too often you get low budget, bad script, bad acting fare to end up on Mystery Science Theater 3000. One movie that is a guilty pleasure for some is The Sword and the Sorcerer from […]

It’s not often you come across a novel for which the descriptive tags “gonzo” and “hard sci-fi” equally apply.  Travis J. I. Corcoran’s Powers of the Earth somehow manages the feat in his tale of a rebel moon’s bid for independence.  The results are a hot, glorious mess that never stops throwing new wrenches into the machinery […]

One of the stalwarts of the men’s adventure paperback genre from the 1960s through the early 1990s was Lou Cameron. Cameron (1924-2010) started out as an artist. For whatever reason, he turned to writing cranking out dozens of paperbacks in genres including westerns, crime/detective, and war. He won the Western Writers of America Spur Award […]

Mike Resnick is a writer with a career spanning five decades. I read The Goddess of Ganymede thirty years ago when I found it in a used book store.  I have read a few other things by him over the years – Santiago, Ivory, The Soul Eater. I enjoyed the two Ganymede sword and planet […]

The print and broadcast media went through their adolescence during a time when the bi-polar world of Cold War dominated the Great Game between world powers.  As a result, the espionage genre, which prior to WWII delved into the rich complexities of the Great Game, came to be dominated by the Battle of the Iron Curtain.  […]

Last week, I looked at Marvin Albert as “Ian MacAlister’s” Strike Force 7. Three weeks ago, I had some good luck at the library book sale. I picked up nine James Bond novels by Ian Fleming, Signet/New American Library editions from the 60s and early 70s. Found a nice Modesty Blaise paperback with Robert McGinnis […]

Up to this point, this light novel survey has been focused on stories set in the writers’ present. The recent history of the medium can be organized into three great periods: the secondary fantasy worlds of  the 1980s and 1990s, the primary fantasy adventures of the 1990s and 2000s, and the isekai portal fantasies of the 2000s and […]

A couple of books I picked up for a long flight:   The Seventh Circle – “A former Australian soldier’s extraordinary story of surviving seven years in Afghanistan’s most notorious prison”.  No surprise that the Afghan justice system is corrupt and that money talks but the book provides great insights into life behind bars in […]

Two months ago, I wrote a piece about Marvin Albert writing as “Ian MacAlister’s” Skylark Mission. Strike Force 7 was the third novel under this pseudonym. Another Fawcett Gold Medal paperback from June 1974. Originally sold for $.95 cents. The cover has a distinct pulp atmosphere to it. Strike Force 7 has a contemporary setting […]

Previous entries in this light novel recommendation series have explored Tolkien’s primary and secondary worlds, with the aim of explaining the mechanics of isekai portal fantasies that take characters from the present and fling them into fantasy worlds. As a result, the selections have dealt with heroes from the primary world–our world. But self-contained and internally consistent fantasy worlds […]

This is a guest post by Rich. Take it away:   It has now been more than forty years since small press stalwart David Madison shot himself dead in an Arlington railway yard. He was twenty six years old. I do not presume to understand why he did this. And I am not about to […]

Friend of the blog, Karl K. Gallagher, best known for his Torchship trilogy of hard sci-fi novels (previously reviewed here), took a swing at the fantasy genre fastball this spring with the release of his Lost War duopoly.  The result is a solid, stand-up triple with much to recommend it.  It’s a wild blend of […]