SF/F Saturday: Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell

JonathanStrangeAndMrNorrell

"Can a magician kill a man by magic?" Lord Wellington asked Strange. Strange frowned. He seemed to dislike the question. "I suppose a magician might," he admitted, "but a gentleman never would." Since I've just heard the welcome news that it will soon be a TV miniseries, this SF/F Saturday presents a good opportunity to write about one of my favorite modern novels. Published in 2004, Susanna Clarke's debut novel Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell is an alternate-history fantasy set in … [Read more...]

SF/F Saturday: His Dark Materials

HisDarkMaterials

There's a lot of fantasy fiction that I enjoy in spite of its religious themes - C.S. Lewis' Narnia series, or Madeleine L'Engle's A Wrinkle in Time. But sometimes I'm in the mood for fiction that takes an explicitly atheist and humanist point of view, which is why I've lately been rereading one of my favorite series, Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy. The first book in the series, The Golden Compass (published as Northern Lights outside the USA), is set on an alternate Earth that … [Read more...]

SF/F Saturday: Doctor Who

DoctorWho

I'm mostly going to do book reviews for SF/F Saturday. But today's an anniversary that it'd be a sin to pass over! Fifty years ago today, a low-budget TV show debuted on the BBC in an unspectacular time slot. It was originally intended by the network to be a children's educational program, and even that modest goal was overshadowed by the news of President John F. Kennedy's assassination the day before. That show was called Doctor Who, and its creators could never have guessed the cultural … [Read more...]

SF/F Saturday: Anathem

SFFAnathem

I found out this week that my books have been getting ratings and reviews on Goodreads, without any prompting or even knowledge on my part, which is pretty cool. So, I now have an author page on Goodreads, which you can use to shower accolades upon my literary endeavors. (Or just add me as a friend. Either way.) This is a good chance to kick off a new post series on Daylight Atheism, SF/F Saturdays. Since I'm going to be publishing more fiction in the future, I've been wanting to talk more … [Read more...]