Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Dispatches from the Border, March 2019

DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News From Borderlands Books
March 2019

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Upcoming Events
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Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Josiah Luis Alderete, SevanKeelee Boult, Isaac R. Fellman, Leslie Miley, Kyle Thomas Smith, and Maurisa Thompson, with guest host Elena Rose, Saturday, March 9th at 7:30 pm

Seanan McGuire, THAT AIN'T WITCHCRAFT (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) Saturday, March 23rd at 5:00 pm

SF in SF (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina St. San Francisco) with authors Nancy Kress and Jack Skillingstead, moderated by Terry Bisson, Sunday, March 31st at 6:30 pm

Dana Fredsti, BLOOD INK (Titan, Trade Paperback, $14.95) Sunday, April 7th at 3:00 pm

Mike Chen, HERE AND NOW AND THEN (MIRA, Hardcover, $26.99), and Peng Shepherd, THE BOOK OF M (William Morrow, Hardcover, $26.99) Saturday, April 13th at 3:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) Saturday, April 13th at 7:30 pm

(for more information check the end of this newsletter)

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News
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* Overheard in the Store:

"I had a REALLY long week yesterday."

"My toast was 'To 2019 - may it be a great year for schadenfreude!'"

"I like your name!"
"Thanks, I got it for my birthday."

"It's one of those fundamental rules: if you're lit, don't light things."

* Overheard at Mission Police Station:
"I'm here to get my sh*t back."
"What sh*t is that, Sir?"
"My sh*t that got taken away from me."
"Under what circumstances was your sh*t taken away, Sir?"
"When I was arrested."
"Oh. Hang on for a minute."

* Octavia Butler's groundbreaking classic Parable duology is set to be reprinted with gorgeous new covers and a foreword from N.K. Jemisin, which you can read at the link below. Feel free to preorder by emailing office@borderlands-books.com! https://ew.com/books/2019/02/25/parable-octavia-butler-reissue/

* N.K. Jemisin also sat down with Studio 360, where she spoke about her new collection of short stories and her own approach to writing. Listen here: https://www.pri.org/stories/2019-02-28/nk-jemisin-and-unspoken-politics-speculative-fiction

* Well it's only going to be 25 years until we get to start messing up the Moon the way we did the Earth.  Yay? http://www.mining.com/mining-moon-ready-lift-off-2025/

* There are rumors that the 2019 CW Arrowverse crossover will lead to the cancellation of "Arrow" (meh) and "Legends of Tomorrow" (WHAT?! How. Dare. You.)  They are only rumors for now, though. http://sciencefiction.com/2019/02/26/rumor-mill-cw-may-cancel-arrow-andor-legends-tomorrow-crisis-infinite-earths/

* When you name things in space, there are a whole list of rules about what things have to be named after.  Like the fact that everything on Io is named after something associated with fire, volcano or Dante's Inferno.  Who makes up these rules?  The International Astronomical Union.  Check out more here! https://www.washingtonpost.com/science/2019/02/26/bizarre-brilliant-rules-naming-new-stuff-space/?utm_term=.445823c04a29

* Lillian Li is publishing her first book, but her first writing experience? Well, Harry Potter fanfiction of course! https://www.refinery29.com/en-gb/number-one-chinese-restaurant-book

* WiFi brain hacking! https://www.inverse.com/article/53699-brain-neural-engineering-neurological-disorders-hacking-the-brain

* If you've read DUNE you probably already know the answer to the question "Why is this novel so hard to film?!", but it's always fun to see people run through it. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/films/0/dune-versus-hollywood-frank-herberts-spicy-sci-fi-saga-hard/

* On the Rick Owens runway, aliens ("Star Trek" rubber-face aliens, but aliens) met fashion, and it was great! https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/2019/03/01/rick-owens-turned-his-models-into-aliens-oddballs-they-looked-so-glamorous/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.243b9c02fc79

* Unfortunately if you weren't in Arizona, you probably missed the Afrofuturism festival they held this month.  However, there's a Q&A with some of the basics if you've always wondered what Afrofuturism was.  https://asunow.asu.edu/20190206-discoveries-afrofuturism-explores-science-fiction-rooted-past

* Rumors are that "Aquaman 2" will feature the team that Aquaman was a part of previous to The Justice League -- The Others who each wield an Atlantean object. http://sciencefiction.com/2019/03/01/rumor-mill-aquaman-2-will-introduce-others/

* There are some movies that should never be touched or rebooted, and then there are the campy classics that just beg to be driven into the ground.  "Critters" is of the latter category. http://sciencefiction.com/2019/03/01/shudder-released-first-trailer-critters-new-binge/

* Almost as a companion to the Karin Lowachee story about human/AI interaction <https://www.theverge.com/2019/2/4/18139371/karin-lowachee-sci-fi-story-video-seimei-ai-better-worlds>, here is an article telling us to ignore science-fiction: that AI isn't out to get us.  Which first means they haven't read as broadly as they thought, and second that Lowachee is a visionary!  https://www.spectator.co.uk/2019/02/ignore-the-science-fiction-ai-isnt-out-to-get-us/

"History is 'the closest thing we have to science fiction,' says historian Jose Raymund Canoy."  If that first line didn't make you want to read this whole article then. . . . you're probably not that interested in history.  But for those who are check out this article: https://www.philstar.com/lifestyle/sunday-life/2019/02/24/1896144/historian-who-says-history-science-fiction

* There has been a lot of talk about how Chinese speculative fiction has been growing and has a new perspective on genre fiction. Here's an article on how Chinese science fiction is exploring dystopias.  https://www.newstatesman.com/chinese-science-fiction-dystopia-liu-cixin-triology

* The Mad Scientist Initiative, which is something that would inspire less terror and more joy if they weren't part of the military, is holding a short story contest about war in the year 2030.  Check out details here: https://www.dailypress.com/news/military/dp-nws-army-mad-scientist-20190125-story.html

* Mahershala Ali, who just took home an Academy Award, has signed on to play the lead in a science-fiction movie written by the co-writers of "A Quiet Place". http://sciencefiction.com/2019/02/28/academy-award-winner-mahershala-ali-will-headline-sci-fi-movie-sovereign-quiet-place-writers-stranger-things-producers/

* Creating a suggestion matrix based on 100 years of of science-fiction which can analyze trends and suggest things you would not normally consider sounds amazing! https://www.wired.com/story/infoporn-100-years-of-sci-fi-explored/

* If you have not watched Netflix's adaptation of the comic book series "The Umbrella Academy", get on it!  Then check out this article on the six questions the first season left us with. http://collider.com/the-umbrella-academy-netflix-questions

* SYFY FANGRRLS is doing a special limited podcast called Forgotten Women of Genre to explore women's contributions to genre.  Their first subject is Melissa Mathison, the woman who wrote the "ET" screenplay.  There will be a new subject every day for the month, so check it out. https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/forgotten-women-of-genre-melissa-mathison

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Award News
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*The Tiptree Fellows for 2018 have been announced as Vida Cruz and Ana Hurtado.  Congratulations! https://tiptree.org/tiptree-fellowships/2018-tiptree-fellowships

* The 2018 Aurealis Awards, which celebrate Australian speculative fiction, have released their shortlist.  https://aurealisawards.org/2019/02/20/2018-aurealis-awards-shortlist-announcement/

* The Horror Writers Association has revealed the final ballot for the 2018 Bram Stoker Awards. The graphic novel category looks especially good this year. http://horror.org/2018-bram-stoker-awards-final-ballot/

* The finalists for the Nebula Awards have been announced, and they include the marvelous Mary Robinette Kowal, as well as Sam J. Miller, P. Djèlí Clark, and others.  Check out the full list here: https://nebulas.sfwa.org/2018-nebula-finalists-announced/

* NESFA, The New England Science Fiction Association, has announced that the Skylark Award (presented to someone, who, in the opinion of the membership, has contributed significantly to science fiction) has been awarded to Melissa Snodgrass.  They have also presented the Gaughan (for emerging artist) to Nicolas Delort. https://www.nesfa.org/awards/skylark.html and https://www.nesfa.org/awards/gaughan.html

* The Baltimore Science Fiction Society has listed the finalists for the 2019 Compton Crook Award!  Nominees include S.A. Chakraborty, R. F. Kuang, Rebecca Roanhorse and more. http://www.bsfs.org/CCA/bsfsccnu2014.htm

* The British Science Fiction Association has listed the finalists for this year's BSFA Awards.  https://bsfa.co.uk/awards-shortlist/

* Head over and check out the amazing art that's been nominated for the Spectrum Awards! They run the gamut in tone and material but are all interesting. http://spectrumfantasticart.com/blog/2019/02/18/spectrum-26-awards-nominations/

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From The Office
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March Building Update

Looking back, I realize that it's been quite a while since I've given an update on how the construction is going at the new building.  Sorry for that but . . . the holidays, catchup after them, and then Cary's passing all made for a few months when extensive writing wasn't going to happen. However, time to correct that now.

There are four big jobs that we've been working on since late last year and they've all moved forward quite a bit since November.  They are, in no particular order; rebuilding the front of the store, expanding the bathroom to make it ADA compliant, creating the garden in the backyard, and getting the new electrical service installed.  There was one other job, the structural work in the basement, but the final touches were completed in January.  Here's where we stand on the other jobs:

Rebuilding the storefront ran into a hiccup in January and it took 'til the middle of last month to get past it.  The storefront that existed was, to be blunt, crap.  It had been built in the 70s at low cost, and it showed.  It also was not ADA accessible.  So, in consultation with the Historic Preservation department of the planning commission, we designed a completely new storefront that was correct for the building while also being accessible.  The new design included some big posts and beams that increased the seismic strength of that portion of the place (important because, right now, it's the weakest point in the structure).

Tearing out the old construction was easy (and a pleasure) but then the process of getting the material delivered involved a few delays.  Beams that are 19 feet long and measure 9 1/12" by 7 1/2" are not, at all, something you throw in the backseat of your car.  Once the material was delivered, fitting it all was a complicated and (very) careful job but not too hard.  But then . . . due to the method of attachment, I had to drill six precisely-located holes the long way through some 4" by 8" posts.  And they had be be dead-straight so that they would all line up correctly on the far side.  I blew through four 12' long posts before I figured out how to get the holes to line up correctly (BTW, it took a full-size drill press to do the job).

Now that those are done, it'll just take a little bit more work to get both posts and both beams in place.  Once that is finished, the job is a mostly straightforward piece of framing work with some fine details like the front tile and the windows.  I'm guessing that it'll take another month or two for completion because I'm also going to be working on . . .

The bathroom expansion also involves some big beams and posts.  Actually, one huge beam and a couple smaller ones.  The big beam is 18 feet and measures 5 1/4" by 16". The sucker weighs about 432lbs and has to go all the way up to the ceiling.  The tricky part of that job is where the smaller beam meets both the supports for the stairs going up to the apartments and the big beam.  We've been working on fitting that for two weeks and we're very close to having a pattern that we can transfer over to the actual beam so we can cut it to shape.  Once that's done, we put up the big beam, the posts to support it and then we can demolish the old bathroom.  With the old bathroom gone, like the previous job, it's a simple matter of framing the walls and then getting the plumbing and electrical installed.  I'm going to guess a month or two from now to complete that job as well, then we'll need to see how fast the plumber and electrician can get their work done.

The garden is going very well.  All the plants aren't in yet but we're at about 50%.  Over the last couple of weeks we got the first section of brick layed and that allowed us to move the rest of the brick out there, rather than having it take up a bunch of space inside the shop.  We'll be working along on that as time and weather allows but, it doesn't need to be finished before we open so it's less of a priority than the other jobs.  Regardless of how far we get on it before we open, it's going to be a work in progress for a long time because that's how gardens "do".

Finally, the new electrical service has been taking much longer that expected, mostly because Pacific Gas and Electric does everything on their own time (except when it comes to blowing up or burning down whole towns, it seems).  But, we're finally under contract for the service, the trenching plans are set, and we just need to have a pre-construction meeting to make sure all the ducks are in a row.  After that we can get the trench in the sidewalk cut, the new conduit in place, and then we can wait for a couple of weeks 'til they put in the new wires.  With that done, our electrician, Antonius Dintcho, should be able to get the rest of the work finished pretty quickly.  Because of the PG&E factor, I'm not going to make any prediction when that will be finished.

After we get all those jobs done, it's going to be a matter of final inspections for the storefront and the bathroom.  Once we pass those, then it's all small jobs and finish work -- additional electrical, new ceiling, lights, new floor (or, ugh, carpet), building dividing walls in the basement, getting the shelving in and so forth.  It'll still be a long way to go but, once we get the three big jobs above completed, we'll have made moved from the big-complicated part of the job to the smaller-simple part.  Which will be very, very nice.

In closing, I still don't have a date in mind.  I'm still sticking with "this year" but when this year is still anyone's guess.

All Best,
Alan

PS  I'll try to have some pictures posted in time for the next newsletter.

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Best Sellers
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Borderlands Best-Selling Titles for February, 2019

Hardcovers
1. The City in the Middle of the Night by Charlie Jane Anders
2. Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James
3. The Raven Tower by Ann Leckie
4. How Long 'Til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
5. In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire
6. Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee
7. Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty
8. Kingdom of Needle and Bone by Mira Grant
9. Binti: The Complete Trilogy by Nnedi Okorafor
10. Early Riser by Jasper Fforde

Trade Paperbacks
1. The Power by Naomi Alderman
2. The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin
3. The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin
4. Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
5. The Three-Body Problem by Liu Cixin, trans. by Ken Liu
6. The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin
7. Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
8. All Systems Red by Martha Wells
9. All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
10. A People's Future of the United States ed. by Victor LaValle and John Joseph Adams

Mass Market Paperbacks
1. Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
2. Dune by Frank Herbert
3. Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
4. Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
5. Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
6. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
7. American Gods by Neil Gaiman
8. The Long Sunset by Jack McDevitt
9. Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs
10. Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

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Book Club Information
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The QSF&F Book Club will meet on Sunday, March 10th at 5 pm to discuss ALL SYSTEMS RED by Martha Wells. Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at cobalt555@earthlink.net, for more information.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, March 17th at 6 pm to discuss ALL SYSTEMS RED by Martha Wells. The book for the following month will be NEW YORK 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson.  Please contact bookclub@borderlands-books.com for more information

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Upcoming Event Details
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Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Josiah Luis Alderete, SevanKeelee Boult, Isaac R. Fellman, Leslie Miley, Kyle Thomas Smith, and Maurisa Thompson, with guest host Elena Rose, Saturday, March 9th at 7:30 pm - Writers With Drinks is the most awesome spoken-word variety show in the world, and we're always happy to participate! The amazing lineup this month includes authors Josiah Luis Alderete (The Spanglish Power Hour), SevanKeelee Boult (Chile! Hood Stories: A Fairy's Tale), Isaac R. Fellman (The Breath of the Sun), Leslie Miley (The Musings of a Black Man in Tech), Kyle Thomas Smith (Cockloft: Scenes From a Gay Marriage), and Maurisa Thompson (Fat Man and Little Boy Take a Selfie in San Francisco), with fabulous guest host Elena Rose! Cost: $5 to $20, no-one turned away for lack of funds.  All proceeds benefit local non-profits.  Doors open at 7:00, show begins at 7:30 pm and Borderlands will be on hand to sell books.

Seanan McGuire, THAT AIN'T WITCHCRAFT (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) Saturday, March 23rd at 5:00 pm - We're always delighted to welcome Seanan McGuire back to Borderlands!  This time we're celebrating InCryptid volume 8(!) which again features Antimony Price.  Still fleeing the Covenant, Annie and her not-at-all human friends have hopefully found a safe spot to lay low and catch their breath in a rambling, isolated old farmhouse in seemingly-idyllic New Gravesend, Maine.  Unfortunately, The Crossroads are trying to call in their bargain, and more than one person seems to want Annie and her friends dead (or worse).  Without her family and the Mice, will Annie make it out of this one?  Join us to find out!

SF in SF (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina St. San Francisco) with authors Nancy Kress and Jack Skillingstead, moderated by Terry Bisson, Sunday, March 31st at 6:30 pm - (Suggested donation $10.)  Doors and bar at 6:00 pm, event begins at 6:30 pm.  We're so happy to participate in the Science Fiction in San Francisco reading series! The authors will read a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience moderated by author Terry Bisson.  Authors will schmooze & sign books after.  Books will be available for sale.  Seating is limited, so first come, first seated.  Bar proceeds benefit the American Bookbinders Museum.  Questions?  Email sfinsfevents@gmail.com.

Dana Fredsti, BLOOD INK (Titan, Trade Paperback, $14.95) Sunday, April 7th at 3:00 pm -  Join us to meet local author Dana Fredsti and check out the thrilling sequel to SPAWN OF LILITH!  Here's the synopsis of the new title: "Having killed her last producer (SO not her fault, though), stuntwoman Lee Striga's next film shoot takes her to the voodoo-soaked bayous and haunted back alleys of New Orleans, where sinister supernatural figures stalk the streets.  In a dark corner of the French Quarter, an arcane tattoo artist is using his clients in rituals that will open an inter-dimensional gateway for a demon god from beyond the stars."  Don't miss this chance to get a signed copy & enjoy the next book in this atypical urban fantasy series.

Mike Chen, HERE AND NOW AND THEN (MIRA, Hardcover, $26.99), and Peng Shepherd, THE BOOK OF M (William Morrow, Hardcover, $26.99) Saturday, April 13th at 3:00 pm - We are very happy to welcome these two excellent, up-and-coming authors to the store!  Publishers Weekly liked both of their novels, and gave HERE AND NOW AND THEN, Mike Chen's debut, a starred reivew and called it "heartfelt", "thrilling" and "unforgetable". https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-7783-6904-2.  Peng Shepherd's debut, THE BOOK OF M, about a post-apocalyptic world full of danger and magic was called "graceful and riveting". https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-06-266960-5. We sincerely hope you'll join us to meet Mike and Peng and check out their books -- you'll be able to say you "knew them when"!

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) Saturday, April 13th at 7:30 pm - More details to come!

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Featured Upcoming Titles
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(These titles have not arrived yet.  You may pre-order most of these books by calling or emailing us.  Prices may be subject to change.  Of course, we have many more titles arriving each week . . . call or email us if you're curious about a particular upcoming title not listed here. This list is tentative and subject to change by publishers.  Unless otherwise noted, books are originals.)

KELLEY ARMSTRONG * Cruel Fate * Subterranean Press, Apr 2019 (na, hc, eb)
MIKE ASHLEY, ed. * The Menace of the Machine * British Library Publishing, Apr 2019 (tp)
NATHAN BALLINGRUD * Wounds: Six Stories from the Border of Hell * Simon & Schuster/Saga Press, Apr 2019 (c, hc, tp, eb)
ASHOK K. BANKER * Upon a Burning Throne * Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/John Joseph Adams, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
PETER S. BEAGLE & JACOB WEISMAN, EDS. * The Unicorn Anthology * Tachyon Publications, Apr 2019 (an, tp, eb)
JOHN CONNOLLY * A Book of Bones * Hodder & Stoughton, Apr 2019 (hc)
DELILAH S. DAWSON & KEVIN HEARNE * No Country for Old Gnomes * Penguin Random House/Del Rey, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
STEPHEN R. DONALDSON * The War Within * Penguin Random House/Berkley, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
TERRY DOWLING * The Complete Rynosseros * PS Australia, Apr 2019 (c, hc)
GREG EGAN * Perihelion Summer * Tor.com Publishing, Apr 2019 (na, tp, eb)
MEG ELISON * The Book of Flora * Amazon/47 North, Apr 2019 (tp, eb)
DAVID FARLAND, ED. * L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future Volume 35 * Galaxy, Apr 2019 (oa, tp, eb)
JAINE FENN * Broken Shadow * Angry Robot US, Apr 2019 (tp, eb)
PAUL DI FILIPPO * The Deadly Kiss-Off * Blackstone Publishing, Apr 2019 (a, hc, eb)
NEIL GAIMAN * The Nice and Accurate Good Omens Companion * Headline, Apr 2019 (nf, hc)
NEIL GAIMAN * The Quite Nice and Fairly Accurate Good Omens Script Book * Headline, Apr 2019 (hc)
CHRISTOPHER GOLDEN * The Pandora Room * St. Martin’s, Apr 2019 (h, hc, eb)
TERRY GOODKIND * The Scribbly Man * Head of Zeus, Apr 2019 (hc)
GWYNETH JONES * Big Cat and Other Stories * NewCon Press, Apr 2019 (c, hc, eb, tp)
STEPHEN JONES, ed. * Best New Horror #29 * PS Publishing, Apr 2019 (hc)
KAY KENYON * Nest of the Monarch * Simon & Schuster/Saga Press, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
MARK LAWRENCE * Holy Sister * Ace, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
SILVIA MORENO-GARCIA, ED. * Nebula Awards Showcase 2019 * Start/Pyr, Apr 2019 (an, tp, eb)
EMMA NEWMAN * Atlas Alone * Ace, Apr 2019 (tp, eb)
SUZANNE PALMER * Finder * DAW, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
K.J. PARKER * Sixteen Ways to Defend a Walled City * Orbit US, Apr 2019 (tp, eb)
MIKE RESNICK * The Master of Dreams * DAW, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
REBECCA ROANHORSE * Storm of Locusts * Simon & Schuster/Saga Press, Apr 2019 (hc, tp, eb)
ANGELA SLATTER * The Heart Is a Mirror for Sinners and Other Stories * PS Publishing, Apr 2019 (c, hc)
JONATHAN STRAHAN, ED. * The Best Science Fiction & Fantasy of the Year Volume 13 * Rebellion/Solaris US, Apr 2019 (an, tp, eb)
JONATHAN STRAHAN, ED. * Tor.com Publishing Editorial Spotlight #5 * Tor.com Publishing, Apr 2019 (an, eb)
SAM SYKES * Seven Blades in Black * Orbit US, Apr 2019 (tp, eb)
ADRIAN TCHAIKOVSKY * Cage of Souls * Head of Zeus, Apr 2019 (hc)
ANN VANDERMEER, ED. * Tor.com Publishing Editorial Spotlight #4 * Tor.com Publishing, Apr 2019 (an, eb)
FRAN WILDE * Riverland * Abrams/Amulet, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)
T.M. WRIGHT * The Best of T.M. Wright * PS Publishing, Apr 2019 (c, hc)
TIMOTHY ZAHN * Knight * Tor, Apr 2019 (hc, eb)


Abbreviations indicate: (r) reprint, (h) horror, (ya) young adult, (nf) non-fiction, (c) collection, (oc) original collection, (na) novella, (a) associational, (om) omnibus, (eb) e-book, (an) anthology, (pi) pictoral and other, (art) art and others, (gn) graphic novel, (x) media tie-in, (nv) novelette, (ss) short story, (hc) hardcover, (tp) trade paperback, (ph) pamphlet, (pb) paperback, (oa) original anthology, (b) biography, (v) paranormal romance, (pm) poetry.

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 - Na'amen Gobert Tilahun
Assistant Editor - Jude Feldman

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of Borderlands Books, 866 Valencia St.
San Francisco CA 94110
415 824-8203
http://www.borderlands-books.com
Comments and suggestions should be directed to editor@borderlands-books.com

* * * * * * *

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Dispatches from the Border, February 2019

In Memoriam
Cary Heater
1961-2019

Cary Heater passed away at San Francisco General Hospital in the early morning of Thursday, January 31st as a result of complications following a fall and severe head injury on the night of Wednesday, January 16th.

Cary was a Bay Area native, born and raised in San Jose.  She moved to San Francisco in the 80's, in part to escape the South Bay's heat (which she despised). Throughout much of her time in SF she worked as an accountant, ultimately heading the accounting department of a major downtown firm.  In the early 2000's she left that field and went looking for something else.  She found bookselling and never looked back.

She started working with us at Borderlands in 2002.  Initially she was very worried that she wouldn't be a good bookseller because she didn't read widely enough in the field to make good recommendations.  But, with a little encouragement, she quickly grew into the role.  Over time, Cary took over many of the administrative duties at the store and was an absolutely vital part of Borderlands' success.

On a personal level, Cary and I were friends for 27 years.  We meet dancing in nightclubs around town and became close friends.  Our friendship persisted and grew through multiple career changes, life crises, triumphs and defeats.  She was my oldest friend.

She also counted among her friends many fellow booksellers, authors, artists and, above all, customers.  We will be gathering to celebrate her life on Friday, February 8th, from 7 pm to 11 pm at Borderlands Books.  We hope that you will be able to join us.

It was her wish that she be cremated and there will be no service.  If you wish to make a donation to charity in Cary's name, I'd like to suggest the Book Industry Charitable Foundation (https://www.bincfoundation.org/donate/).  Had Cary survived her injury, that organization's support would have been crucial to helping her manage the financial consequences.

Cary had no surviving family but I don't think she ever felt alone in the world.  She had a family that she chose in the staff and customers of Borderlands.  There had never been anything in her life that she loved more than bookselling.  We are all grateful that she chose us.

- Alan Beatts

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Upcoming Events
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Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Charlie Jane Anders, Gayle Brandeis, Chris Denson, Laleh Khadivi, and Lisa Margonelli, Saturday, February 9th at 7:30 pm

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Nick Mamatas and Anya Martin, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, February 24th at 6:30 pm

Canceled - Ann Leckie, THE RAVEN TOWER (Orbit, Hardcover, $26.00) Thursday, February 28th at 6:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco), Saturday, March 9th at 7:30 pm

(for more information check the end of this newsletter)

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News
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* Overheard in the Store:
"Who, exactly, decided that this image of empowered femininity would be a completely naked woman chasing a playful mini T-Rex around a tree with a kitchen knife?"

"This seems like a good plan; I'll just pose in this hoodie on an emu!"

"I believe in role-playing games, & I believe in cosplay.  I just don't believe they go great together."

"In my experience, LARP-ing is just sitting in 30 pounds of dress while my friends argue for hours."

"We never said it would be easy. We just said it'd be worth it."

"They may be coming here to leave their hearts in San Francisco, but they clearly left their brains in Dayton or Poughkeepsie or wherever it is they're from!"

* A 100 year-old Holocaust survivor talks about the importance of books.  Her letter is included in an anthology of essays on books and reading. https://www.brainpickings.org/2018/12/18/a-velocity-of-being-helen-fagin/

* In extremely sad local news, Aardvark Books has closed after 40 years in San Francisco.  https://hoodline.com/2019/01/final-chapter-aardvark-books-to-close-this-friday-after-40-years-in-business

* A exploration on how women were not excluded from early science fiction circles, but in fact made vital contributions that were erased over time. https://www.wired.com/2019/02/geeks-guide-history-women-sci-fi/

* io9.com gives you a list of 37 speculative books releasing in February that you can purchase and curl up with just in case you're in the middle of the Polar Vortex. https://io9.gizmodo.com/37-new-science-fiction-and-fantasy-books-to-keep-you-wa-1831879973

* A list of eight SF/F books with queer, poly relationships, which we would have loved to have as young adults. https://www.autostraddle.com/8-science-fiction-and-fantasy-books-with-queer-poly-relationships-445053/

* A reexamination of "The Matrix", and whether it had some part to play in our current reality where people feel free to blissfully ignore facts. https://www.vulture.com/2019/02/the-matrix-built-our-reality-denying-world.html

* The creators of RWBY have a new anime series to launch with an all-star cast including David Tennant, Michael B. Jordan and Maisie Williams.  Introducing "gen:LOCK": https://www.inverse.com/article/52550-rooster-teeth-genlock-explained-trailer-premiere-date

* While the conversation on the diversity of authors and worlds has taken steps forward in the last few years, diversity in the industry itself is still worth consideration.  Bustle interviewed 10 women of color who work in publishing about their experiences.  https://www.bustle.com/p/how-10-women-of-color-actually-feel-about-working-in-book-publishing-15867283

* Now the only question is: resistance, or do we bow and welcome our future Skynet overlords? https://www.techspot.com/news/78519-self-aware-machines-wont-science-fiction-much-longer.html

* There's a college that focuses on Fantasy and History.  Unfortunately if your interests stray anywhere outside of Europe, this is not the school for you -- but maybe someone else will start a more diverse version soon.  (Also, it has no accreditation.)  https://www.concordmonitor.com/signum-university-tolkein-nashua-nh-22924145

* "Paradise Hills" sounds like a weird, over-the-top, lush prison film where hyper-femininity is enforced, confining and deconstructed.  "Lord of the Flies" by way of a dystopian finishing school.  We're already interested.  https://www.theverge.com/2019/2/4/18201719/paradise-hills-review-awkwafina-milla-jovovich-alice-waddington-sundance-2019

* Whenever we think about living spaceships, it's generally more squishy and "Farscape"-like, but this article points out there's any number of ways scientists are working on living spaceships.  https://www.ozy.com/fast-forward/think-living-spaceships-are-science-fiction-think-again/90873

* Where was this cutting-edge research when we were in school struggling with French or Spanish?  All the things science fiction promised us, it's delivering to the next generation -- not fair.  https://www.inverse.com/article/52901-can-you-learn-new-information-or-languages-during-sleep

* An interview with author Karin Lowachee about her short story "A Sun Will Always Sing" and a future in which humanity and AI coexist in harmony rather than competition. https://www.theverge.com/2019/2/4/18207357/karin-lowachee-interview-sci-fi-artificial-intelligence-better-worlds

* A list of 20 black speculative fiction authors that you should know.  https://culturess.com/2019/02/03/20-legendary-black-science-fiction-authors/

* A Harvard astronomer talks about the the possibilities of aliens: why they are no less speculative than other space theories, and why astronomy should open its mind to the idea of extraterrestrial intelligence.  https://www.wbur.org/endlessthread/2019/01/30/oumuamua-alien-probe-avi-loeb

* The assumption that women writers of speculative fiction are automatically writing for a younger audience is one that many of us who work in bookstores have noticed, but where does that idea come from?  https://bookriot.com/2019/01/21/sexist-problem-in-fantasy/

* A man taught himself how to animate the story he wanted to tell all on his own.  Check out his story here and then go watch all the nine episodes of the first season of "Esluna: The First Monolith" on youtube.  https://io9.gizmodo.com/meet-a-guy-who-taught-himself-to-animate-his-own-sci-fi-1832155351

* Bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon has accused her husband of a plot to poison her and steal her financial resources while being emotionally abusive and manipulative.  More details here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/01/17/best-selling-paranormal-romance-writer-accuses-her-husband-shakespearean-plot-poison-her/

* If you happened to miss Appreciate a Dragon Day this year, no worries -- here is a list of 10 iconic dragons of film & TV to remind you why you loved them in the first place! (Also a good reminder of things to re-watch or perhaps watch for the first time.)  https://parade.com/731743/solanahawkenson/the-top-10-dragons-from-film-tv-for-appreciate-a-dragon-day/

* Author Garth Nix has made a deal to publish his first books aimed squarely at an adult audience with Gollancz.  Details for the upcoming two novels are here: https://www.thebookseller.com/news/gollancz-snaps-nixs-two-novels-935501

* "CBS All Access" seems to be aiming directly for the science fiction market, with not only the second season of "Star Trek: Discovery" premiering, but also announcements of a "Star Trek" spin-off series, "The Twilight Zone" reboot, and a new adaptation of Stephen King's "The Stand."  https://qz.com/quartzy/1539178/with-star-trek-the-twilight-zone-and-the-stand-cbs-all-access-is-a-necessity-for-sci-fi-nerds/

* Rick Riordan's new imprint has been putting out acclaimed science fiction.  Check out its newest offering from acclaimed science-fiction writer Yoon Ha Lee, DRAGON PEARL. https://culturess.com/2019/01/15/dragon-pearl-yoon-ha-lee-rick-riordan-presents/

* Apparently the government is researching travel via wormhole.  This will either advance us hundreds of years or blow us back to the stone age.  (Honestly the way things are going, either sounds pretty good.) https://www.thequint.com/voices/opinion/traversable-wormholes-super-fast-travel-usa-defense-intelligence-agency

* "Glass", whatever you think of the ending, gave us a glimpse into a very real condition: people who think they are superheroes.  https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/science-behind-the-fiction-glass


------------------
Award News
------------------
* R.F. Kuang has won the Crawford Award for the amazing debut fantasy novel THE POPPY WAR: https://locusmag.com/2019/02/kuang-wins-crawford-award/

* The nominees for the 2019 Philip K. Dick Awards have been announced!  https://www.philipkdickaward.org/2019/01/2019-philip-k-dick-award-nominees-announced.html

* SFWA has announced the recipients for the 2019 Kate Wilheim Solstice Award for distinguished contributions to the science fiction & fantasy community: Nisis Shawl & Neil Clarke!  https://nebulas.sfwa.org/sfwa-announces-the-2019-kate-wilhelm-solstice-award-recipients/

--------------------
From The Office
--------------------

When visiting someone's home for the first time, it's a habit among book people to take a careful look at what is on the shelves.  It always gives a remarkably detailed insight to their personality and character.  I can't show you Cary's bookself but I can do something close.  Below you'll find a list of the books that Cary loved and reccomended over the years.  Jude compiled it and I've sorted them by author.  In the case of series, I've only listed the first novel but, generally, Cary tended to only suggest series titles that held up through their run.  I hope that you enjoy this peek into Cary's personality.

All Best,
Alan

The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie
Best Served Cold by Joe Abercrombie
Sharp Ends by Joe Abercrombie

In the Garden of Iden by Kage Baker
Gaudeamus by John Barnes
Tamsin by Peter S. Beagle
Tithe by Holly Black
Necklace of Kisses by Francesca Lia Block
I Was a Teenage Fairy by Francesca Lia Block
The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley
In Other Lands by Sarah Rees Brennan
World War Z by Max Brooks
Little Green Men by Christopher Buckley
Territory by Emma Bull

Soulless by Gail Carriger
Romancing the Werewolf by Gail Carriger
The Devil You Know by Mike Carey
Fellside by M.R. Carey
Someone Like Me by M.R. Carey
The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Lives of Tao by Wesley Chu

Little Brother by Cory Doctorow
The Spaceship Next Door by Gene Doucette

The Circle by Dave Eggers

The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde
Willful Machines by Tim Floreen

The Princess Bride by William Goldman
The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey
Spoonbenders by Daryl Gregory

Hounded by Kevin Hearne
My Best Friend's Exorcism by Grady Hendrix
Holmes on the Range by Steve Hockensmith

Fated by Benedict Jake
How to Make Friends With Demons (originally published as Memoirs of a Master Forger) by Graham Joyce
Some Kind of Fairy Tale by Graham Joyce
Curioddity by Paul Jenkins

The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages
Passing Strange by Ellen Klages
Portable Childhoods by Ellen Klages
Wicked Wonders by Ellen Klages
Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
Beggars in Spain by Nancy Kress
The Privilege of the Sword by Ellen Kushner
Swordspoint by Ellen Kushner
Tremontaine edited by Ellen Kushner

Savage Season by Joe R. Lansdale
How to Ditch Your Fairy by Justine Larbalestier
Razorhurst by Justine Larbalestier
The Gentleman by Forrest Leo
Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart
Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

A Crown for Cold Silver by Alex Marshall
Good Fairies of New York by Martin Millar
Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore
A Dirty Job by Christopher Moore
Fool by Christopher Moore
Lamb, or, the Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore
Serpent of Venice by Christopher Moore
The Stupidest Angel by Christopher Moore
Secret History of Witches by Louisa Morgan
The Wild Girls by Pat Murphy

Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel

Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett
Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett
James Tiptree, Jr.: The Double Life of Alice B. Sheldon by Julie Phillips
Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough
The Stress of Her Regard by Tim Powers

Stiff by Mary Roach
The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
The Slow Regard of Silent Things by Patrick Rothfuss

Old Man's War by John Scalzi
The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
Fuzzy Nation by John Scalzi
The Android's Dream by John Scalzi
Agent to the Stars by John Scalzi
Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab
Illuminatus Trilogy by Robert Anton Wilson and Robert Shea
Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloan

Just One Damned Thing After Another by Jodi Taylor

The Martian by Andy Weir
I Am Not a Serial Killer by Dan Wells
Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
The Midnighters by Scott Westerfeld
Bellwether by Connie Willis
Crosstalk by Connie Willis
Black Out & All Clear by Connie Willis
Miracle by Connie Willis
Doomsday Book by Connie Willis

Mechanical Failure by Joe Zieja

Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
Rogues edited by GRRM and Gardner Dozois
Zombies vs. Unicorns edited by Holly Black and Justine Larbalestier

Non-genre:
Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil by John Berendt
Cool Grey City of Love by Gary Kamiya
Heresy by Melissa Lenhardt
Tales of the City by Armisted Maupin
Altamont by Joel Selvin
The Season of the Witch by David Talbot

----------------
Best Sellers
----------------
Borderlands Best-Selling Titles for January, 2018

Hardcovers
1. In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire
2. How Long 'Til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
3. Dragon Pearl by Yoon Ha Lee
4. Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty
5. Fire and Blood by George R.R. Martin
6. Rejoice, A Knife to the Heart by Steven Erickson
7. Red Moon by Kim Stanley Robinson
8. Though Fiery Trials by David Weber
9. Rogue Protocol by Martha Wells
10. Thin Air by Richard Morgan

Trade Paperbacks
1. The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin
2. The Three-Body Problem by Liu Cixin, trans. by Ken Liu
3. The Power by Naomi Alderman
4. Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
5. Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
6. Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin
7. Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
8. All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
9. Hannah Green and Her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence by Michael Marshall Smith
10. The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin

Mass Market Paperbacks
1. Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
2. Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
3. The Dispossessed by Ursula K. LeGuin
4. Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
5. Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
6. Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
7. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
8. Old Man's War by John Scalzi
9. Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
10. The Brightest Fell by Seanan McGuire


------------------------------
Book Club Information
------------------------------

The QSF&F Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 10th, at 5 pm to discuss TOMORROW'S KIN by Nancy Kress.  The book for the following month will be ALL SYSTEMS RED by Martha Wells.  Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at cobalt555@earthlink.net, for more information.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 17th at 6 pm to discuss THE CLOCKWORK DYNASTY by Daniel H. Wilson. The book for the following month will also be ALL SYSTEMS RED by Martha Wells.  Please contact bookclub@borderlands-books.com for more information


------------------------------
Upcoming Event Details
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Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Charlie Jane Anders, Gayle Brandeis, Chris Denson, Laleh Khadivi, and Lisa Margonelli, Saturday, February 9th at 7:30 pm - Writers With Drinks is the most awesome spoken-word variety show in the world, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders, and we're always happy to participate! The amazing lineup this month includes authors Charlie Jane Anders (yes, she's reading as well as hosting! (The City in the Middle of the Night), Gayle Brandeis (The Book of Dead Birds), Chris Denson (Crushing the Box), Laleh Khadivi (The Age of Orphans) and Lisa Margonelli (Underbug).  This one will be extra special, since we've got permission from the publisher to sell Charlie Jane's new book 3 days early!  Cost: $5 to $20, no-one turned away for lack of funds.  All proceeds benefit local non-profits.  Doors open at 6:30 and Borderlands will be on hand to sell books.

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Nick Mamatas and Anya Martin, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, February 24th at 6:30 pm - (Suggested donation $10.)  We're so happy to participate in the Science Fiction in San Francisco reading series!  The authors will read a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience moderated by author Terry Bisson.  Authors will schmooze & sign books after.  Seating is limited, so first come, first seated.  Doors and bar open at 6:00 pm, event begins at 6:30 pm.  Donations benefit the American Bookbinders Museum.  Questions? Email sfinsfevents@gmail.com.

Ann Leckie, THE RAVEN TOWER (Orbit, Hardcover, $26.00) Thursday, February 28th at 6:00 pm - Ann Leckie, author of the award-winning & highly acclaimed Ancillary Trilogy, turns her sites to epic fantasy with exciting results.  We're delighted to welcome Ann back to Borderlands to show off this new novel, THE RAVEN TOWER!  Publisher's Weekly says: "In this complex novel, the first epic fantasy from SF author Leckie (PROVENANCE), the best-laid plans of gods and mortals collide, throwing a nation into turmoil and setting the stage for a divine conflict that’s been brewing for centuries. The tale spins out in past and present, narrated by the rockbound god known as the Strength and Patience of the Hill."  We don't want to give too much away, but Leckie's strength and cretivity as a writer and keen intelligence are all on display in this amazing new work. We don hope you'll join us to meet her!  Read the starred review from Kirkus here: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/ann-leckie/the-raven-tower/

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco), Saturday, March 9th at 7:30 pm - Details to come!

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 - Na'amen Gobert Tilahun
Assistant Editor - Jude Feldman

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of Borderlands Books, 866 Valencia St.
San Francisco CA 94110
415 824-8203
http://www.borderlands-books.com
Comments and suggestions should be directed to editor@borderlands-books.com

* * * * * * *

Friday, January 25, 2019

Dispatches from the Border, January 2019

DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News From Borderlands Books
January 2019

----------------------
Upcoming Events
----------------------

TOMORROW! Rudy Rucker, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH (Transreal Books, Trade Paperback, $13.95 and Hardcover, $22.95) and others, and art show premiere! Saturday, January 26th at 3:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Charlie Jane Anders, Gayle Brandeis, Chris Denson, Laleh Khadivi, and Lisa Margonelli, Saturday, February 9th at 7:30 pm

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Nick Mamatas and Anya Martin, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, February 24th at 6:30 pm

CANCELLED - Ann Leckie, THE RAVEN TOWER (Orbit, Hardcover, $26.00) - CANCELLED

(for more information check the end of this newsletter)

-------
News
-------
* Overheard in the Store:
"The Pope's never seen _my_ meat!"

* Local author Nick Mamatas is teaching a Fabulist Fiction course at WeWork Golden Gate, 25 Taylor St., San Francisco.  There are six sessions and it starts THIS Saturday, January 12th.  The cost is $395.  Details and sign up here: https://sfwriting.institute/portfolio/fabulist_fiction/

* A very interesting article on the way young Muslims are finding a sense of belonging in science fiction. https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2018/12/28/young-muslims-find-meaning-and-inspiration-science-fiction-novels/2413653002/

* io9 has gotten together a list of the fictional people, shows and comics that we lost in 2018. R.I.P. https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-fictional-people-and-things-we-lost-in-2018-1831260333

* How many science fiction predictions for 2019 came true?  How many didn't?  (We will probably always be mad at the absence of flying cars and teleportation devices.) https://triblive.com/business/technology/14448704-74/science-fiction-predictions-right-and-wrong-about-2019

* A new science-fiction magazine, "Dreamforge", with a theme of optimism, survival and hope, will be coming out of Pittsburgh in 2019. https://www.bizjournals.com/pittsburgh/news/2018/12/27/science-fiction-magazine-takes-off-in-pittsburgh.html

* Speaking of optimistic science fiction, check out the short story series "Better Worlds," -- ten stories, half turned into animation and the other half into audio stories.  The series will premiere on January 14th on The Verge. https://www.theverge.com/2018/12/5/18055980/better-worlds-science-fiction-short-stories-video

* The Biology of Science Fiction is a class we wish we could have taken in college.  (Na'amen always complained that they weren't teaching him how to make mutants to obey his every whim, but Duke's class is a step in the right direction.) https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article223159485.html

* British science fiction author Robert Storey has been missing since the day after Xmas.  Anyone with any information is being asked to contact the police. https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6532419/Fears-grow-vulnerable-science-fiction-author-42-Ancient-Origins-thriller-series.html

* io9 gives us a list of the ten best and the four worst TV shows of 2018. We feel vindicated about our reaction to the "Nightflyers" adaptation. https://io9.gizmodo.com/the-10-best-and-4-worst-tv-shows-of-2018-1831217984

* A list of the best future-focused science-fiction TV and film being released in 2019. https://newatlas.com/best-sci-fi-fantasy-coming-2019-tv-film/57791/

* For those who watched all of the DC series "The Titans", but missed the after-credits scene.  Two new characters were teased as joining in season 2.  One we expected, the other. . . . http://sciencefiction.com/2018/12/27/watch-titans-s1-post-credits-scene-meet-two-new-super-additions/

* Did you enjoy "The Titans" and wonder about all the shifts from the announcements of titles to the cut episode count?  Here are your answers: http://sciencefiction.com/2018/12/26/showrunner-explains-titans-went-12-episodes-11/

* NASA has released a study on the best way to go about possibly locating other intelligent species in the universe.  It even theorizes that Earth may hold some artifacts of non-human origin. https://www.express.co.uk/news/science/1064164/nasa-announcement-news-alien-technology-discovery-space-extraterrestrial

* Coming after the tremendous success of "Get Out", the trailer for Jordan Peele's newest horror film, "Us" has been released -- and it definitely looks terrifying. http://sciencefiction.com/2018/12/28/jordan-peele-shares-directors-insight-trailer-us/

* Na'amen only cares about science that asks the really important questions, the ones that seem relevant to his life and interests, like when we will be able to speak to marine life. https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/aquaman-superpowers-talk-fish-science

* Fans of comic book adaptations know that not all adaptations of Marvel works exist within the same universe.  In fact there are currently four worlds - the main MCU, the X-men films, the Netflix Marvel series & the "Deadpool" movie universe.  Here are the odds on some of the characters from the latter three transferring into the big leagues of the main MCU.  http://sciencefiction.com/2018/12/26/characters-will-transition-mcu-odds/

* Former President Barack Obama has released his best-of lists for 2018, and two genre films made the list - "Annihilation" & "Black Panther".  For more detail go here: https://www.syfy.com/syfywire/barack-obama-black-panther-annihilation-best-of-list-2018

* The links between science fiction and philosophy, and how each can be used to illustrate and illuminate the other: https://www.thedailystar.net/shout/news/the-philosophy-science-fiction-1679149

* Do you like whiskey?  Do you like science fiction?  Then it seems like there's a company you should be checking out: https://thewhiskeywash.com/whiskey-styles/bourbon/science-fiction-whiskey-theme-continues-with-predator-bourbon/

* Vulture gives the list of their top ten science fiction and fantasy books, which we're glad we checked out, because there are a couple on this list we hadn't heard of, and sound great! https://www.vulture.com/article/best-sci-fi-books-2018.html

* A gentleman has managed to create and patent a quiet ion powered aircraft.  For now the focus is on using it for drones, but eventually the plan is to create one that can carry passengers. https://www.news5cleveland.com/an-oberlin-man-is-creating-a-flying-machine-straight-out-of-science-fiction

* Wired got eight speculative fiction authors to contribute stories about the future of work - including Charlie Jane Anders, Nisi Shawl, Ken Liu and Martha Wells.  Check them out here: https://www.wired.com/story/future-of-work-sci-fi-issue/

* Dyson Sphere! https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2018/12/this-video-explains-everything-you-need-to-know-about-my-favorite-science-fiction-superstructure/

* Did a transformer actually explode in Queens?  Or is it an MIB-style cover-up for an alien showdown in our backyard? https://www.forbes.com/sites/ericmack/2018/12/28/crazy-blue-light-over-new-york-wasnt-aliens-but-it-sure-looked-like-it/#4f2a19e356e5

* Speaking of MIB: the trailer for the new film "MIB International" is out, starring Chris Hemsworth & Tessa Thompson.  Thor & Valkyrie fighting aliens side by side?  We're there.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BV-WEb2oxLk

* Is it just a hunk of rock, or a derelict sun-powered alien craft?  (Let's be honest; it's most likely the former, but the latter sounds way cooler.) https://www.macleans.ca/society/science/oumuamua-hunk-of-interstellar-rock-or-sun-powered-alien-ufo/

* What is the connection between space and dead children: why are they so often paired together in science fiction tales? https://theweek.com/articles/809988/unfortunate-scifi-trope-dead-child-backstory

* Meet Rose Macaulay, a contemporary of Aldous Huxley, whose dystopian novel WHAT NOT has been out of print since it first appeared in 1919 and seems to have had considerable influence on BRAVE NEW WORLD.  It will reappear in print this coming March. https://qz.com/quartzy/1498891/the-pillars-of-science-fiction-are-two-writers-you-dont-know/

------------------
Award News
------------------

* The 2018 GoodReads Choice Winners have been announced after millions of votes. https://bookriot.com/2018/12/04/2018-goodreads-choice-winners-announced/

* The 2018 Parsec Awards, celebrating speculative podcasting, have been announced. http://www.parsecawards.com/2018-winners-finalists/

* The inaugural award for books focusing on STEAM have announced their shortlist. https://www.thebookseller.com/news/uclan-announces-shortlist-inaugural-steam-prize-917186

* The judges for the 2019 World Fantasy Award have been announced. http://file770.com/2019-world-fantasy-awards-judges/

--------------------
From The Office
--------------------

Welcome to 2019 Everyone!

As you can tell, this newsletter is _horribly_ late.  And it's all my fault.  January is usually a bit busy and crazy but this one has been a record-breaker.  I've been trying to write something articulate for the past two weeks and all that has come out was "mumble, sponsorships, mumble, new roof, mumble, mumble, mumble".  So, I'm not going to be articulate very much at all (I'll try that next month, which will be here in . . . six days!?!!).

It's a new year and so, once again, we're soliciting sponsorships for 2019.  We do this every year so we can stay open.  We need to have 300 sponsors (at $100 each) by March 31st or we'll close.  Full story here - http://borderlands-sponsors.blogspot.com/p/why-sponsorships.html .  Benefits here - http://borderlands-sponsors.blogspot.com/p/sponsor-benefits-and-privilidges.html .  On-line signup here - https://borderlands-books.com/buysponsorship19.html .  Or you can sign up by mail, or in person at the shop.

We've been working on the building at Haight Street a lot.  We've got a new roof, some big structural work almost complete (last bits to do in the basement and ground floor structural work 50% done), the garden is looking great (pictures up at the blog soon), and we're just about to start the new electrical service installation.  It continues to go slow but very well.

And that's all I've got right now.  I hope that 2019 is treating you better than it's treating me (insert wry smile here) and I hope to see you around the shop sometime soon.

All Best,
Alan

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Best Sellers
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Borderlands Best-Selling Titles for December, 2018

1) Fire & Blood by George R.R. Martin
2) How Long 'Til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
3) The Consuming Fire by John Scalzi
4) Rejoice, a Knife to the Heart by Steven Erikson
5) Artificial Condition by Martha Wells
6) Thin Air by Richard Morgan
7) Worlds Seen in Passing edited by Irene Gallo
8) Exit Strategy by Martha Wells
9) Red Moon by Kim Stanley Robinson
10) So Far, So Good: Final Poems by Ursula K. Le Guin

Trade Paperbacks
1) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
2) The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
3) The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
4)  Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
5) All Systems Red by Martha Wells
6) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
7) The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin
8) Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
9) Hannah Green and Her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence by Michael Marshall Smith
10) Space Opera by Cat Valente

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
2) The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
3) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
4) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
5) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
6) Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
7) Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
8) Rosemary & Rue by Seanan McGuire
9) The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
10) Gardens of the Moon by Steven Erikson

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Book Club Information
------------------------------
The QSF&F Book Club will meet on Sunday, February 10th, at 5 pm to discuss TOMORROW'S KIN by Nancy Kress.  Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at cobalt555@earthlink.net, for more information.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, January 20th at 6 pm to discuss THE CALCULATING STARS by Mary Robinette Kowal. The book for the following month will be THE CLOCKWORK DYNASTY by Daniel H. Wilson.  Please contact bookclub@borderlands-books.com for more information

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Upcoming Event Details
------------------------------

TOMORROW! Rudy Rucker, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH (Transreal Books, Trade Paperback, $13.95 and Hardcover, $22.95) and others, and art show premiere! Saturday, January 26th at 3:00 pm - It's always a treat to welcome the quirky and irrepressible genius Rudy Rucker to the store!  Rudy is an author, artist, mathematician and one of the godfathers of Cyberpunk.  Join us to check out his newest book, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH, and celebrate the reprints of two other titles.  Rudy will also lead a "guided tour" of his current art show at Borderlands Cafe.

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors Charlie Jane Anders, Gayle Brandeis, Chris Denson, Laleh Khadivi, and Lisa Margonelli, Saturday, February 9th at 7:30 pm - Writers With Drinks is the most awesome spoken-word variety show in the world, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders, and we're always happy to participate! The amazing lineup this month includes authors Charlie Jane Anders (yes, she's reading as well as hosting! (The City in the Middle of the Night), Gayle Brandeis (The Book of Dead Birds), Chris Denson (Crushing the Box), Laleh Khadivi (The Age of Orphans) and Lisa Margonelli (Underbug).  This one will be extra special, since we've got permission from the publisher to sell Charlie Jane's new book 3 days early!  Cost: $5 to $20, no-one turned away for lack of funds.  All proceeds benefit local non-profits.  Doors open at 6:30 and Borderlands will be on hand to sell books.

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Nick Mamatas and Anya Martin, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, February 24th at 6:30 pm - (Suggested donation $10.)  We're so happy to participate in the Science Fiction in San Francisco reading series!  The authors will read a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience moderated by author Terry Bisson.  Authors will schmooze & sign books after.  Seating is limited, so first come, first seated.  Doors and bar open at 6:00 pm, event begins at 6:30 pm.  Donations benefit the American Bookbinders Museum.  Questions? Email sfinsfevents@gmail.com.

CANCELLED - Ann Leckie, THE RAVEN TOWER (Orbit, Hardcover, $26.00) - CANCELLED - Very unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, Ann Leckie has had to cancel the RAVEN TOWER tour.  We hope to see her back in the store later on this year.  You can read her announcement here: https://www.annleckie.com/2019/02/12/the-raven-tower-tour-not/

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 - Na'amen Gobert Tilahun
Assistant Editor - Jude Feldman

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of Borderlands Books, 866 Valencia St.
San Francisco CA 94110
415 824-8203
http://www.borderlands-books.com
Comments and suggestions should be directed to editor@borderlands-books.com

* * * * * * *

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Dispatches from the Border, December 2018

DISPATCHES FROM THE BORDER
Events and News From Borderlands Books
December 2018

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Upcoming Events
----------------------

Adam Plantinga, POLICE CRAFT (Quill Driver Books, Trade Paperback, $16.95) Thursday, January 10th at 6:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors John Briscoe, Izzy Oneiric, Simon Sheppard, and Colin Winnette, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders! Saturday, January 12th at 7:30 pm

BCAF (Black and Brown Comix Arts Festival), at the San Francisco Public Library and City View at Metreon, Sunday, January 20th from 1:00 - 5:00 pm, and Monday, January 21st from 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Howard Hendrix, Cecelia Holland, and Kim Stanley Robinson, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, January 20th at 6:00 pm

Rudy Rucker, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH (Transreal Books, Trade Paperback, $13.95 and Hardcover, $22.95) and others, and art show premiere! Saturday, January 26th at 3:00 pm

(for more information check the end of this newsletter)

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2019 Gift Guide
---------------------

Hello All and Sundry!

This year seems to have flown by.  The explanation I've heard for the seeming acceleration of time I'm experiencing is that as we age, time seems to go by faster, because any given amount of time is a smaller fraction than it used to be of your life overall (i.e. when you're five years old, one year is one-fifth of your life, but when you're thirty-five, one year is a thirty-fifth of your life, so it is comparatively a much shorter time).  Regardless of why it happens, recognizing this disconcerting speeding up is a reminder to me to enjoy all the time we've got as best we can.  I'm working on it, and in that spirit -- I wish you all the very best, and hope that this season and next year both treat you all very well, and that you have much to celebrate both now and in the future!

As we hurtle seemingly increasingly quickly toward this gift-giving season, we here present our usual Opinionated (and Digression-Filled) Gift Guide to help you out.  However, if you don't see something appropriate here, we're always happy to make custom suggestions for you or anyone in your life.  We'll even wrap 'em for you!  (A special note to those of you purchasing presents: we're glad to gift wrap upon request, although our typical caveats apply: first, if we're busy, you may have to wait a bit to have things wrapped, and, second, some staff members are MUCH better than others at it.  It is possible that your package may resemble a brightly wrapped Lovecraft-ian, batrachian, rugose, Thing of No Human Shape.  For some customers, this is not a problem . . ."better than I can do!," they say.  However, if you are concerned about our, ahem, abilities, we're also happy to just hand you the gift wrap, scissors and tape.)

Onward!

- Jude Feldman

New and Exciting:

FIRE & BLOOD by George R.R. Martin - This first of two parts of the Targaryen history that begins 300 years before the events in GAME OF THRONES is getting excellent reviews, but some readers don't want to pick it up because the book keeps stubbornly refusing to be WINDS OF WINTER.

THE CALCULATING STARS and THE FATED SKY by Mary Robinette Kowal - EVERYONE on staff read and loved THE CALCULATING STARS.  All of us.  We can't say enough good things about this alternate history starring the indomitable Elma York, who wishes to be an astronaut despite all the obstacles in her way.  Come in to the store and hear us rave about these novels!

WORLDS SEEN IN PASSING: TEN YEARS OF TOR.COM SHORT FICTION edited by Irene Gallo - an absolutely astonishing collection.  Everything in here is at the very, very least "totally solid", and the stories range from there to mind-blowingly good.

HOW LONG 'TIL BLACK FUTURE MONTH? By N.K. Jemisin - History's first black female author (and author, period) to win 3 sequential Hugos for Best Novel presents her first short fiction collection, and it is getting fantastic reviews from everyone.  I loved this description from the publishers: ". . . Jemisin equally challenges and delights readers with thought-provoking narratives of destruction, rebirth, and redemption." But don't take my word for it: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/30/books/review/nk-jemisin-how-long-til-black-future-month.html

THIN AIR by Richard Morgan - The creator of ALTERED CARBON is back with a new futuristic noir thriller which I think is his best since THIRTEEN.

REJOICE, A KNIFE TO THE HEART - Steven Erikson, best known for the epic and massive Malazan fantasy series, has written a new science fiction novel that neither Jim nor Scott can stop rating about -- both of them are saying "It's SO GOOD!".

RED MOON by Kim Stanley Robinson  - This is a "black licorice" book -- people either love it or they hate it, but no one has been neutral.  I'm firmly in the "love it!" camp.

ALL I EVER DREAMED by Michael Blumlein - Do yourself a favor and check out the transcendental short fiction of local author Michael Blumlein.  This collection is a keeper.

SOULLESS ILLUSTRATED EDITION by Gail Carrier - The light and funny steampunk romp, now with lovely Edward-Gorey-style illustrations by Jensine Eckwall!

SOMEONE LIKE ME by M.R. Carey - I couldn't put down this new novel from the author of THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS.  It's a totally unconventional thriller and like nothing else I've read recently.
___________________________________________________________________

Better Together:

We've curated a handful of book pairings for you!

A Noir 2-Pack: For the noir fan in your life, pick up the rollicking novel NOIR by Christopher Moore, and the decidedly grim and exceptionally good SANTA CRUZ NOIR edited by Susie Bright!

Haunting Non-Fiction 2-Pack: CAPTIVE OF THE LABYRINTH by Mary Jo Ignoffo is the riveting true story of the life of Sarah Winchester (of Mystery House & Winchester heiress fame).  Everything we thought we knew is wrong!  Pair this with GHOSTLAND: AN AMERICAN HISTORY IN HAUNTED PLACES by Colin Dickey for the person on your list who thinks the Truth is out there.

If They Liked THE LONG WAY TO A SMALL, ANGRY PLANET 2-Pack: Grab THE WRONG STARS by Tim Pratt and NOUMENON by Marina Lostetter!

Ugly Surf 2-Pack: Two older, amazing super-dark surf-crime novels!  TAPPING THE SOURCE by Kem Nunn and THE DAWN PATROL by Don Winslow.

Unconventional Superhero 2-Pack: VELVETEEN VS. THE JUNIOR SUPER PATRIOTS by Seanan McGuire, and PREPARE TO DIE! by Paul Tobin.  These are definitely not your parents' superheroes.

Overcoming Darkness 2-Pack: SMOKE by Dan Vyletta, and THE LIBRARY AT MOUNT CHAR by Scott Hawkins.  Both of these novels explore transcending the darkness of the human condition to find completion.

Feminist Mythology 2-Pack: CIRCE by Madeline Miller and THE GOLEM AND THE JINNI by Helene Wecker.  Scott says that both books have in common women reaching beyond their societally proscribed roles in a mythological context.

"Keep the Government Out of My Science" 2-Pack: THE FOLD by Peter Clines and INFLUX by Daniel Suarez -- bureaucracy destroys creativity.

Start Them Off Right Coloring Book 2-Pack: HER HIGHNESS BUILDS ROBOTS by Laura and Beth Winters and THE JAMES TIPTREE JR. AWARD SPACE BABE COLORING BOOK by Jeanne Gomoll - for the empowered kid in your life!
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In Memory of Ursula K. Le Guin, 1929 - 2018 --

The world is so much poorer for the loss of Ursula K. Le Guin, who passed away in January of 2018.  It is some consolation that we still have her magnificent work.  Explore these (mostly) posthumously published works:

THE BOOKS OF EARTHSEA: THE COMPLETE ILLUSTRATED EDTION is an absolutely stunning volume celebrating the 50th anniversary of A WIZARD OF EARTHSEA.  With more than 50 illustrations by Charles Vess, it weighs nearly 6 pounds and contains not only the original four novels, but also TALES FROM EARTHSEA, THE OTHER WIND, "The Rule of Names", "The Word of Unbinding", "The Daughter of Odren", and "Earthsea Revisioned: A Lecture at Oxford University".  This is definitely one for you, or the collector in your life!

LATE IN THE DAY: POEMS 2010 - 2014, and SO FAR SO GOOD: FINAL POEMS 2014 - 2018 - poetry collections you should not miss.

CONVERSATIONS WITH URSULA K. LE GUIN by Carl Freedman - "In the pieces collected here, Le Guin takes every interview not as an opportunity to recapitulate long-held views but as an occasion for in-depth intellectual discourse."

URSULA K. LE GUIN: CONVERSATIONS ON WRITING with David Naimon - "Ursula K. Le Guin discusses her fiction, nonfiction, and poetry -- both her process and her philosophy -- with all the wisdom, profundity, and rigor we expect from one of the great writers of the last century."
__________________________________________________________

Classics and Old Favorites:

We've got beautiful hardcover editions of enduring classics - GOOD OMENS by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, THE STUPIDEST ANGEL and LAMB, THE BIBLE VERSION (both signed!) by Christopher Moore, THE PRINCESS BRIDE by William Goldman (R.I.P.) (we have a gorgeous illustrated edition and also the 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition), DUNE by Frank Herbert, THE LEFT HAND OF DARKNESS by Ursula K. Le Guin, THE NEVERENDING STORY by Michael Ende, PARABLE OF THE SOWER and PARABLE OF THE TALENTS by Octavia Butler (_stunning_ cover art by Paul Lewin!), and NEUROMANCER by William Gibson, THE COMPLETE FICTION OF H.P. LOVECRAFT in a lovely slipcased edition, plus many many more.
__________________________________________________________

Weird Stuff:

No idea what they'd like?  How about one of these amazing oddities?

BORN TO BE POSTHUMOUS: THE ECCENTRIC LIFE AND MYSTERIOUS GENIUS OF EDWARD GOREY by Mark Dery -  pair with a slim volume of Edward Gorey stickers!

Krampus cards, stickers, postcards, and coloring books - The Devil of Christmas is definitely making a comeback.

THE SECRET ART OF DR. SEUSS by Theodor Suess Geisel - propaganda, weirdness, and stuffed and mounted heads of Suessian creations are just the beginning!

THE NUTSHELL STUDIES OF UNEXPLAINED DEATH by Corinne May Botz - explore the work of the criminally unknown Frances Glesner Lee, a feminist pioneer and creator of astoundingly intricate dollhouse murder scenes that are still being used as a forensic teaching tool 70+ years after their creation! <https://americanart.si.edu/exhibitions/nutshells>

THE LEAGUE OF REGRETTABLE SUPERHEROES by Jon Morris - a whole volume of real-life, ill-advised superheroes from comics history, like Doctor Hormone, Lady Satan, Fantomah, and Stardust the Super Wizard!

THE COCKTAIL GUIDE TO THE GALAXY: RECIPES FROM THE CELEBRATED DR. WHO BAR by Andy Heidel - Learn how to make cocktails like The Blue Blazer, Gin Buck Rogers, Close Encounters of the Third Lime, Cognac the Barbarian, and dozens more!
__________________________________________________________

Books for the writer in your life:

WONDERBOOK by Jeff Vandermeer, WANDERINGS ON WRITING by Jane Linskold (packed with musings and good advice), THE THORN NECKLACE: HEALING THROUGH WRITING AND THE CREATIVE PROCESS by Francesca Lia Block, STORYTELLER by Kate Wilhelm, STEERING THE CRAFT: A 21ST-CENTURY GUIDE TO SAILING THE SEA OF STORY by Ursula K. Le Guin, DAMN FINE STORY: MASTERING THE TOOLS OF A POWERFUL NARRATIVE by Chuck Wendig, and the classic ON WRITING by Stephen King.

We've also got fantastic journals -- everything from a super-shiny Cthuluhu journal, to a rainbow 10-pack of Pantone blank books, to Compact Novel Journals, where the book's text (in light type) makes the lines you write on!
__________________________________________________________

Bestsellers:

Some of our most popular titles this year:

AUTONOMOUS by Annalee Newitz, ALL THE BIRDS IN THE SKY by Charlie Jane Anders, WHO FEARS DEATH? By Nnedi Okorafor, THE FIFTH SEASON and sequels by N.K. Jemisin, THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM by Liu Cixin (translated by Ken Liu), THE LONG WAY TO A SMALL, ANGRY PLANET by Becky Chambers, EVERY HEART A DOORWAY by Seanan McGuire, ALL SYSTEMS RED by Martha Wells, THE FREEZE-FRAME REVOLUTION by Peter Watts, and oh-so-many more incredible titles!
__________________________________________________________

Art!

We have many unique items from local artists!  Gorgeous art prints from Christine Rhee <https://www.christinerhee.com/>; meaningful jewelry from Luminous Darlings <http://luminousdarlings.com/storeFront.html>; cool steampunk one-offs from Fire Selkie Creations <http://www.fireselkiecreations.com/>; and fancy lapel pins and hair clips from Fly By Night Gifts.

__________________________________________________________

As always, we're happy to make personalized recommendations and practice our Psychic Bookseller Skills when you're stumped.  If you just can't decide, we also offer gift certificates in any amount.

We deeply appreciate your support of independent booksellers; proudly keeping America thoughtful and weird!  Here's to a bright, peaceful, and optimistic 2019.

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News
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* R.I.P. to Stan Lee, the creator of so many famous superheroes and a man who inspired many people: https://www.tor.com/2018/11/12/stan-lee-1922-2018/

* We're sorry to report the death of William Goldman, Oscar-winning screenwriter and more importantly, author of THE PRINCESS BRIDE. https://variety.com/2018/film/news/william-goldman-dead-dies-butch-cassidy-and-the-sundance-kid-1203030474/

* We're extremely sorry to hear that Endgame in Oakland will be closing at the end of January.  Please drop by and give them some support this month to assist with their closing expenses -- pick up a board or card game or a miniature, and also let them know they'll be sorely missed. http://www.endgameoakland.com/

* The classic vampire book THE GILDA STORIES by Jewelle Gomez is being adapted for TV by Cheryl Dunye and we are so excited.  Pick up the collection now while you can. https://shadowandact.com/afrofuturistic-novel-on-bisexual-vampire-the-gilda-stories-is-being-developed-for-tv-by-cheryl-dunye

* ANOTHER great adaptation on the way: this time Mira Grant's killer mermaid novella! https://www.tor.com/2018/11/15/mira-grant-rolling-in-the-deep-adaptation-seanan-mcguire-killer-mermaids/

* If you weren't lucky enough to make it to WorldCon this summer, check out George R.R. Martin's talk about a number of his works and techniques here: https://winteriscoming.net/2018/12/05/george-r-r-martin-interview-research-fantasy-fiction/

* Yeah this movie sounds . . . bad.  BUT, it sounds like it might be on the border of so bad it's good, so we sorta still want to check it out. https://www.deccanherald.com/entertainment/20-sci-fi-takes-fantasy-turn-706699.html

* Na'amen's only read one of the five novels on this list, but it was one of his favorite reads this year (THE POPPY WAR), and some of the others are on all of our lists, so we think it checks out: https://www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/books/the-5-best-science-fiction-and-fantasy-novels-of-2018/2018/11/13/14451af0-cbef-11e8-920f-dd52e1ae4570_story.html?utm_term=.24c85e8ddeac

* A list of the Top 5 Science Fiction movies of the year -- but your mileage may vary; some of these are questionable: https://www.forbes.com/sites/danidiplacido/2018/12/03/the-5-best-science-fiction-movies-of-2018/#409819b5174f

* "Nightflyers" doesn't look like it's the quite the runaway hit that Syfy thought it was getting. https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/nightflyers-attempts-apply-george-r-r-martin-s-game-thrones-ncna944761

* So there seems to be some debate as to whether "It's A Wonderful Life" is a speculative movie or not.  Na'amen's always thought of it as a speculative movie, and a bad one -- but if you disagree you can go to the io9.com article and argue in the comments. https://io9.gizmodo.com/is-holiday-classic-its-a-wonderful-life-secretly-or-ac-1830726913

* Here are nine of the most important British science fiction stories, many of which were part of waves that launched entire subgenres. https://www.denofgeek.com/uk/books-comics/62079/the-9-most-important-british-science-fiction-stories

* If you don't mind subtitles and are into some interesting and gripping Alt-History, you should definitely check out Netflix's "1983" which is set in a world where the Iron Curtain never fell and the Cold War continues. https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/netflix-s-new-show-1983-tightly-paced-well-written-polish-ncna942511?icid=related

* Check out this great interview with Lisa Yaszek about her book THE FUTURE IS FEMALE!: 25 Classic Science Fiction Stories by Women, from Pulp Pioneers to Ursula K. Le Guin and the things that we get wrong about the history of women writing in science fiction: https://loa.org/news-and-views/1439-lisa-yaszek-we-get-the-history-of-women-in-science-fiction-thoroughly-wrong

* A list of 10 new science fiction and fantasy books coming out this month that you should consider adding to your collection. https://www.theverge.com/2018/12/1/18109892/science-fiction-fantasy-books-recommendation-december-2018

* Using science fiction to discuss the ethics of actual controversial science such as gene-editing on children.  https://www.marketplace.org/2018/11/29/tech/can-science-fiction-help-us-grapple-gene-editing-technology

* For those who are interested in exploring other countries' speculative fiction that might not have made it over here, there's the new book A BRILLIANT VOID, which is a collection of Irish Science Fiction.  https://www.irishtimes.com/culture/books/a-brilliant-void-a-selection-of-classic-irish-science-fiction-1.3709937

* How many times have you watched the "Avengers: Endgame" trailer?  Did you catch these nine easter eggs?  https://www.inverse.com/article/51550-avengers-4-endgame-trailer-breakdown-secrets-spoilers-easter-eggs

* Look for our future corporate overlords to start hiring science fiction writers with an eye toward predicting future trends and inventions. https://boingboing.net/2018/12/07/brian-david-johnson.html

* If you haven’t been watching "The Good Place", we recommend you begin.  Immediately.  This article argues that Janet is the most optimistic AI on TV, although Janet would be the first to tell you "Not a Robot/AI."  https://www.wired.com/story/the-good-place-janet-optimistic-ai/

* What does science fiction say about the place where the author resides, where they grew up, and what their country is going through? http://www.bbc.com/culture/story/20181203-what-our-science-fiction-says-about-us

* We just heard about this game and we are so into it.  A pulp sci-fi RPG?!? Sign us up!  https://in.ign.com/the-outer-worlds/130908/preview/the-outer-worlds-is-bringing-fun-back-to-science-fiction

* Scotland is having its first book festival dedicated to Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror.  https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/17244634.scotlands-first-book-festival-dedicated-to-fantasy-science-fiction-and-horror-is-launched/

* The Best Sci Fi movies of 2018 that star women.  This list actually convinced us to check out a few movies that we had written off. https://www.marieclaire.com/culture/a25323468/best-sci-fi-movies-2018/

* The discussion and debate of Tolkien and racism continues with author Andy Duncan weighing in, along with others.  https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6428971/Science-Fiction-writer-claims-Lord-Rings-series-racist.html

* Here's a list of 15 of the greatest hard science movies. http://whatculture.com/film/15-greatest-hard-science-fiction-movies-of-all-time

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Award News
------------------

* The Nebula Awards have announced a new category for Game Writing.  https://www.geekwire.com/2018/first-ever-nebula-award-game-writers-approved-professional-science-fiction-writers-organization/

* The 2018 Ignotus Winners, the equivalent to the Hugo for Spain, have announced their winners including Kameron Hurley.  http://locusmag.com/2018/11/2018-ignotus-winners/

* Congratulations to local author & sponsor Ellen Klages for winning the 2018 Best Novel Gaylactic Spectrum Award!  http://www.spectrumawards.org/2018.htm

--------------------
From The Office
--------------------

Hi Everyone,

Here we are at the end of another year.  It's been an interesting one for Borderlands, in the good, bad, and ugly(-ish) ways.  Mostly good, however.

Obviously, the biggest thing going on for us is the slow process of moving.  As regular readers know, I had expected the process to move faster, but the logic of doing the work ourselves versus hiring contractors has made the process slower but much, much cheaper.  All in all, it's to our advantage, but it has made for a substantially longer process that I expected going into it.

Last month was the one year anniversary of starting work and it's kind of fun to look back on all that we've done.  Some of the highlights have been:

Taking a mass of ivy and concrete in the backyard and turning it into a set of lovely planters with actual plants growing in them.

Replacing the falling-down plywood and scrap around the yard with new redwood fences.

Building a shearwall across the back of the building so that it will withstand earthquakes much better than before.

Nailing reinforcing clips on to the ceiling joists to further improve the seismic resistance of the building.  Forty-five joists, four clips per joist, eight nails per clip, for a total of 1440 nails.  That is, in contractor terms, a s**t-ton of nails.

Patching and repairing about 1000 square feet of sheetrock and plaster wall (roughly half of the exterior walls).

Shifting 8 tons of brick for the backyard (which is still to be set in place, so we'll move it one more time before we're done).

Installing a 400-lb steel I-beam in the basement, and excavating well over 5 cubic yards of dirt for foundations.

Pouring 5 cubic yards of concrete into the holes we excavated.

Taking delivery of more than $3500 worth of wooden beams, some weighing 300-400 lbs, and then using them to reinforce the floor (that's a work still in progress but should be finished this weekend).

And, of course, endless dump-runs, sweeping, nail-pulling, more sweeping, and all the day-to-day of a construction job.

At times the work seems like it will never end but, in actuality, it's going quite well.  A job like this is always slow and all the work we're doing now to make sure that the place will suit for the next ten, or twenty, or thirty years is well worth the extra time.  But, darn it, at times I'd really like to just get moved and be done with it.

None of this would have been possible without the support of our sponsors and the folks who lent us the money to buy the building.  It also wouldn't have been possible without the hard-core crew of people who have been volunteering their time over the last year.  Many people have been kind enough to come by and lend a hand for a day or two, and I've very grateful to all of them. But, there is also a group of about a dozen people who have come to help regularly on many Sundays for months.  They are a great group and an absolute pleasure to work with.  It is their help, encouragement, good humor, and hard work that has made this the best construction job I've ever worked on. They are: Caroline Kaster, Jutta Degener, Canute Haroldson, Kelsey Dietz, David Gates, Jo Falcon, Bill Spears, Laura Mazzola, Emily Schaeffer, Josie Schaeffer, Carl Ueber, Dave La Point, Jim Lively, Melinda Rose, Cassie Beckley, and Zach Harper.  How they put up with me, week after week, is a bit of a mystery but I'm very glad that they do.

Where we stand now on the building is pretty good.  The concrete is all poured and so that brings to an end the Saga of the Beam of Eye, which I have posted for you amusement here - <https://borderlands-books.blogspot.com/2018/12/the-tale-of-beam-cautionary-and.html>.  To say that I'm happy about it is the understatement of 2018.  With that done, we're working on reinforcing the floor joists (the big boards that support the actual floor).  Once that's finished, we're on to doing the last big structural work - reinforcing the front of the building (which is two posts, 10 feet long and 4" by 8", plus two beams 17' long and 7 1/4" by 9") and putting in the supports so we can expand the bathroom (also two posts, 12 feet long and 6" by 6" plus three beams, the biggest of which is 15 feet long and 5 1/4" by 16").  Those are both pretty big jobs since the beams weight hundreds of pounds each and are going 10-13 feet in the air.  But, once that's done, we can start doing the actual building of the walls and so forth.  So, it's all very exciting.

I still don't have a completion date and I'm not going to for a while since we're still at the "it'll take as long as it takes" stage.  But, we'll keep plugging along and I'll keep you posted on how it's going.

In closing, I hope that the holiday season treats you well and, more so, I wish you a peaceful and happy New Year.

Warmest Regards,
Alan

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Best Sellers
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Borderlands Best-Selling Titles for November, 2018

Hardcovers
1) Red Moon by Kim Stanley Robinson
2) The Consuming Fire by John Scalzi
3) Soulless: Illustrated Edition by Gail Carriger
4) Rejoice, a Knife to the Heart by Steven Erikson
5) Fire & Blood by George R.R. Martin
6) Labyrinth Index by Charles Stross
7) How Long 'Til Black Future Month? by N.K. Jemisin
8) Someone Like Me by M.R. Carey
9) The Monster Baru Comorant by Seth Dickinson
10) Lies Sleeping by Ben Aaronovitch

Trade Paperbacks
1) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
2) The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
3) The Omega Objection by Gail Carriger
4) The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
5) All Systems Red by Martha Wells
6) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
7) Hannah Green and Her Unfeasibly Mundane Existence by Michael Marshall Smith
8) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
9) Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
10) The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
2) Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
3) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
4) The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
5) Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
6) Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
7) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
8) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
9) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
10) The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin

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Book Club Information
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The QSF&F Book Club will meet on Sunday, January 13th, at 5 pm to discuss NEMESIS GAMES by James S.A. Corey.  Please contact the group leader, Christopher Rodriguez, at cobalt555@earthlink.net, for more information.

The Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Club will meet on Sunday, December 16th, at 6 pm to discuss THE HANDMAID'S TALE by Margaret Atwood. The book for the following month will be THE CALCULATING STARS by Mary Robinette Kowal.  Please contact bookclub@borderlands-books.com for more information

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Upcoming Event Details
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Adam Plantinga, POLICE CRAFT (Quill Driver Books, Trade Paperback, $16.95) Thursday, January 10th at 6:00 pm - This event is outside our usual genres, but we think it will be of interest to you -- particularly mystery fans!  Adam Plantinga is a sergeant at Mission Station in San Francisco, just a few blocks from Borderlands.  He'll be at the store to share his second non-fiction title, and we think it's fascinating!  From the publisher: "A veteran police officer gives his thoughtful, balanced views on every aspect of policing -- and he'll change what you think about the police.  POLICE CRAFT is a thought-provoking and revelatory examination of policing in America, as seen by a working police officer. Adam Plantinga, a sergeant with the San Francisco Police Department, gives an inside view of the police officer's job, including police techniques, police culture, and the sociology of crime and criminals.  Hard-boiled, humorous, and compassionate, Plantinga wrestles with the complexities and contradictions of a job he loves in which he witnesses so much suffering.  Transcending today's strident pro-cop/anti-cop rhetoric, POLICE CRAFT will give every reader a greater respect for the police and greater understanding of the job they do.  Adam Plantinga has been a police officer for 17 years.  Plantinga's first book, 400 THINGS COPS KNOW, received rave reviews from star crime writers such as Lee Child, Edward Conlon, George Pelecanos and Joseph Wambaugh and was hailed as 'the new bible for crime writers' by The Wall Street Journal."

Writers With Drinks (at The Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) with authors John Briscoe, Izzy Oneiric, Simon Sheppard, and Colin Winnette, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders! Saturday, January 12th at 7:30 pm - Writers With Drinks is the most awesome spoken-word variety show in the world, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders, and we're always happy to participate! The amazing lineup this month includes authors John Briscoe (Crush: The Triumph of California Wine), Izzy Oneiric (The Year Is Sunday: a lyric memoir), Simon Sheppard (Man on Man: The Best of Simon Sheppard), and Colin Winnette (The Job of the Wasp).  Cost: $5 to $20, no-one turned away for lack of funds.  All proceeds benefit local non-profits.  Doors open at 6:30 and Borderlands will be on hand to sell books.

BCAF (Black and Brown Comix Arts Festival), at the San Francisco Public Library and City View at Metreon, Sunday, January 20th from 1:00 - 5:00 pm, and Monday, January 21st from 11:00 am - 5:00 pm - We're always honored and delighted to participate in the Black and Brown Comix Arts Festival!  BCAF "celebrates the creativity of people of color in the comic arts and popular visual culture and is dedicated to the notion that all audiences deserve to be subject in the culture in which we participate."  Panels, artists, authors, creators, films, cosplay, kids events, and much more await you at this amazing free event, which takes place over three days and in two locations.  Borderlands will be on hand to sell books.  For the schedule, more details, and updates on the incredible list of guests, see http://sfmlkday.org/bcafcon/#schedule

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinder's Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) with authors Howard Hendrix, Cecelia Holland, and Kim Stanley Robinson, hosted by Terry Bisson, Sunday, January 20th at 6:30 pm - (Suggested donation $10.)  We're so happy to participate in the Science Fiction in San Francisco reading series!  It has become a tradition to welcome Cecelia Holland and Kim Stanley Robinson in January each year, and this time they'll be joined by science fiction author Howard Hendrix!  The authors will read a selection from their work, followed by Q&A from the audience moderated by author Terry Bisson.  Authors will schmooze & sign books after.  Seating is limited, so first come, first seated.  Doors and bar open at 6:00 pm, event begins at 6:30 pm.  Donations benefit the American Bookbinders Museum. Questions? Email sfinsfevents@gmail.com.

Rudy Rucker, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH (Transreal Books, Trade Paperback, $13.95 and Hardcover, $22.95) and others, and art show premiere! Saturday, January 26th at 3:00 pm - It's always a treat to welcome the quirky and irrepressible genius Rudy Rucker to the store!  Rudy is an author, artist, mathematician and one of the godfathers of Cyberpunk.  Join us to check out his newest book, RETURN TO THE HOLLOW EARTH, and celebrate the reprints of two other titles.  Rudy will also lead a "guided tour" of his current art show at Borderlands Cafe.

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 - Na'amen Gobert Tilahun
Assistant Editor - Jude Feldman

All contents unless otherwise noted are the property of Borderlands Books, 866 Valencia St.
San Francisco CA 94110
415 824-8203
http://www.borderlands-books.com
Comments and suggestions should be directed to editor@borderlands-books.com

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