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The Science Fiction & Fantasy Books We Loved in November

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The Science Fiction & Fantasy Books We Loved in November -

Welcome to our monthly roundup chronicling the books the B&N SFF stable of bloggers loved in the previous month. Old or brand new, the item doesn’t matter—these are the best sci-fi & fantasy books we’ve read within the past 30 days.

Rich: Kurt Busiek’s Astro City may have been released within the mid-’90s, yet I just discovered the item—so the item’s brand new to me. This kind of gorgeous first collection of the anthology series will be kind of like the Silver Age variation of Watchmen. the item may be notably less dark, yet the item feels familiar, as Busiek drops readers into the titular city, where an endless array of caped crimefighters (in addition to villains) are the norm. Each chapter covers a separate storyline, though all are interwoven. Brent Anderson’s artwork captures in which nostalgic feel perfectly. Bonus points for cover art through the mighty Alex Ross.

Aidan: On her website, Ilana C. Myer lists Guy Gavriel Kay as a major influence, in addition to the item’s easy to see his fingerprints all over Last Song Before Night. The layered relationships between the little cast of characters, will be very much in his mold, or in which of Lois McMaster Bujold’s The Curse of Chalion in addition to its follow-ups. Add to in which a lyrical world, a wrenching emotional journey, in addition to an interesting magic system based on song, in addition to you’ve got a winner. Myer’s just beginning her career as a novelist, yet I can see big things for her within the future.

T.W. O’Brien: One of the characters in Helene Wrecker’s The Golem in addition to the Jinni calls the title pair “troublesome creatures.” They are in which, yet I was amazed at how human these fantastic beings feel. Wecker’s detailed rendering of turn-of-the-century brand new York City, in addition to how she weaves their stories through the item, will be marvelous.

Nicole: A pick-me-up read, The Postmortal will be not. the item will be, however, a compelling story in which will be at once disheartening in addition to uproarious for its realism. Drew Magary’s latest novel, The Hike, has gotten so much buzz I decided to circle back in addition to check out his debut—in addition to I wasn’t disappointed. The story takes place in a near future where science has made the ultimate breakthrough: a cure for aging. using a relatively simple vaccine, you become inoculated to death by natural aging. The political, environmental, spiritual, in addition to ethical debates This kind of discovery kicks off are far-reaching, in addition to Magary explores them through the eyes of John Farrell, a lawyer who experiences every high in addition to low in This kind of post-Cure society. Magary’s background as a journalist serves him well, as every facet of what John relays to us seems perfectly plausible, down to the most disturbing details.

Joel: When I edited Ross’s review of Kai Ashante Wilson’s A Taste of Honey, in which he called the author “the future of fantasy,” I raised my eyebrows a bit, yet let the superlatives slide for their undeniably clickable appeal. Then I read the book myself, in addition to holy cow, was I wrong to doubt. This kind of slim novella does more in 150 pages than many epics accomplish in seven books, creating a rich fantasy landscape I’m aching to explore further, layering the item with oblique details of godlike beings who threaten to propel the story into the realms of science fiction, in addition to delving into the breaking heart of a seemingly doomed love affair between two men whose lives couldn’t be more different. The language will be dense in addition to delightful, the setting will be sublime, yet its the characters who will grab you—them, in addition to the note-perfect twist at the end.

Paul: Second within the Dandelion Dynasty series, Ken Liu’s The Wall of Storms introduces brand new characters, particularly women reaching for their own autonomy in addition to power as the problems of authority in addition to managing a government descend upon currently-Emperor Kuni. the item also introduces the in-universe equivalent of a Mongol civilization, which arrives with dragons to invade the islands. The epic scale fantasy commenced in The Grace of Kings only gets bigger in addition to better in This kind of second book.

Renay: The Scorpion Rules, the first book within the Prisoners of Peace series by Erin Bow, will be about a society brought to its knees by technology in addition to ruled by the power of personal connections in addition to a snarky artificial intelligence. Every sovereign ruler sends one of their own children as a hostage to peace. If they break the peace to wage war their hostage will be killed. This kind of story, about uses of power in addition to how we wield them, in addition to the strength of our love for one another, manages to be both heartbreaking in addition to hopeful in equal measure.

Shana: Mur Lafferty’s Six Wakes will be an Agatha Christie novel in addition to a space-hopping game of Clue wrapped together. The mystery starts through page one, as six clones wake among the floating corpses of themselves. Lafferty keeps the reader guessing in addition to throws in just enough twists in addition to turns to keep us on the edge of our seat. We learn the backstory of each clone during the course of the story, revealing more possible clues to help solve the ultimate mystery of what happened. I loved This kind of book in addition to am excited to read what Lafftery has in store for us next.

Meghan: Do you ever forget in which you’ve bought a book? I do the item all the time. After knocking over my towering in addition to majestic TBR pile, I discovered The Invisible Library using a six-month-old receipt still stuck within the item’s pages. I’m so glad I found the item. the item’s an excellent novel, reading like a cross between Connie Willis’ To Say Nothing of the Dog in addition to Jim C. Hines Libriomancer series. the item’s whip smart, action packed, in addition to full to the brim with fascinating concepts in addition to lore. I couldn’t put the item down. The characters are especially rich in addition to wonderful. Don’t miss out on This kind of great brand new series!

Ed: I was about to start my biennial reread of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings when I decided to finally tackle The Silmarillion instead. the item features a reputation for being hard to read, yet the item’s a bit like reading Bible stories about Middle Earth. You get Tolkien’s variation of the Book of Genesis in addition to then some epic tales of the early elves in addition to their battles against Morgoth. Civilizations rise in addition to fall, there’s betrayal, glory, in addition to a giant werewolf. Plus, next time you read LotR you’ll be thoroughly immersed within the history of Middle Earth.

Martin: A post-Ragnarock tale of vengeance, violence, wisdom, wit, in addition to war, Chris Sharp’s Cold Counsel follows the early exploits of Slud, son of the last chief of the Blood Claw Clan of mighty trolls who lived atop a mountain. Slud’s birth, wracked with supernatural moments in addition to bends of fate, spurs his father to spread the Clan once more, in addition to reclaim the mountain as theirs. While the attacks are glorious, they are short-lived: the elves in addition to goblins of the land strike the entire Clan down, each fearing a world of Trolls in charge. Only Slud escapes, smuggled out by an older hag by the name of Aunt Agnes, who tutors, trains, torments, in addition to fills his mind with stories of revenge against those who wronged the Clan. One day, Slud strikes out on his own: swaggering, strong on magics in addition to bloodshed, in addition to filled using a no-nonsense pragmatism in which belies his behemoth stature, he’s on a quest to rid the mountain of the goblins who take the item for granted. Sharp’s world will be rich with detail, little bits of worldbuilding in addition to sensory wonder in which only serves to heighten the desperate, muddy, bloody ground we trudge alongside Slud. yet of course, the item will be the characters you’ll fall in love with: Aunt Agnes with all her edges in addition to her secrets, whose story will be not what the item seems; Dingle, the tiny goblin who comes to worship Slud as a god; Neither-Nor, a legendary goblin soldier whose talents include swearing, killing, in addition to dying; in addition to of course, Slud himself, whose wisdom, wit, in addition to wiles are equally balanced out by his thirst for blood, vengeance, in addition to a chance to prove himself. Don’t let the description fool you; This kind of will be not another grimdark romp, yet a deep character study, with a lot to say about the lore in addition to genre the item will be steeped in.

Sam Reader: After reading Grau’s standout entry within the Lost Signals anthology, I managed to track down his debut collection, The Nameless Dark. Grau’s unusual stories manage to weaponize the reader’s own imagination, allowing the most terrifying things to linger just outside the blank spaces, waiting for us to fill within the gaps ourselves. The result will be something in which shows the influence of the greats, yet exists in a supremely unnerving class all its own.

Ceridwen: I’m a sucker for the ontological mystery plot—a little group of people wake up not knowing who or what they are, in addition to then must work out the mystery of their own existence. In Faller, Will McIntosh takes This kind of mystery one step further: not only does no one in This kind of few city blocks know who they are, yet This kind of few blocks makes up the entirety of the earth. the item’s like a chunk of a city was broken off, in addition to will be currently adrift in space. We follow a little group of people as they try to make their way through the unknown. Additionally, we’re given glimpses into what must be the past, taking us up to whatever cataclysm split the earth in addition to wiped everyone’s memories. McIntosh definitely makes the most of This kind of unnerving setup, in addition to Faller will be a fascinating study in culpability in addition to redemption.

Jeff: I find Bowen’s character Nettie Lonesome, who returns in Conspiracy of Ravens, fascinating—in part because This kind of will be kind of outside my usual taste. yet Bowen writes Nettie—a bi-racial in addition to sexually fluid woman who’s uniquely qualified to kick butt in Bowen’s alternate old west, filled with magic in addition to monsters—with such compelling verve she becomes real. Frankly, I need more Nettie Lonesome’s on my shelf.

John: Dan Wells’ Extreme Makeover surprised me. I’m a fan of dystopian tales, yet I wasn’t too sure about the beauty product angle. in which skepticism didn’t last long. This kind of one snagged me with its crisp opening chapters in addition to dragged me through the depths of human vanity, all without taking itself too seriously. A glorious in addition to depressing read: two things you rarely find together at the end of the earth.

What’s the best book you read This kind of month?

B&N Bestsellers in Science Fiction & Fantasy: November 2016

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B&N Bestsellers in Science Fiction & Fantasy: November 2016 -

davidweberFor nearly two decades, Jim Killen has served as the science fiction in addition to fantasy book buyer for Barnes & Noble. At the end of each month, he’ll be sharing the lists of B&N’s bestsellers from the genre, coming from completely new hardbacks, to trade paperbacks, to mass markets in addition to media tie-ins, to graphic novels in addition to manga. These are the books everyone will be talking about—in addition to buying.

Hardcovers

At the Sign of Triumph (Safehold), by David Weber
Arcanum Unbounded (Cosmere), by Brandon Sanderson
The Blood Mirror (Lightbringer), by Brent Weeks
Shadow of Victory (Honor Harrington), by David Weber
Crimson Death (Anita Blake), by Laurell K. Hamilton
Lost Gods, by Brom
The Fate of the Tearling (The Tearling), by Erika Johansenn
The Shadow of What Was Lost, by James Islington
The Lord of the Rings: Deluxe Edition, by J.R.R. Tolkien
A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms, by George R.R. Martin

Trade Paperback

Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury
Stories of Your Life in addition to Others, by Ted Chiang
A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice in addition to Fire), by George R.R. Martin
Uprooted, by Naomi Novik
The Martian, by Andy Weir
The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicles), by Patrick Rothfuss
The Man from the High Castle, by Philip K. Dick
The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams
The Magicians (The Magicians Trilogy), by Lev Grossman
Red Rising (Red Rising), by Pierce Brown

Mass Market Paperback

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicles), by Patrick Rothfuss
A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice in addition to Fire), by George R.R. Martin
Warheart (Richard in addition to Kahlan), by Terry Goodkind
The Wise Man’s Fear (The Kingkiller Chronicles), by Patrick Rothfuss
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams)
Dune, by FrankHerbert
A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice in addition to Fire), by George R.R. Martin
Altered Starscape (Andromedan Dark), by Ian Douglas
Ender’s Game, by Orson Scott Card
American Gods, by Neil Gaiman

Gaming & Media-Related

Catalyst: A Rogue One Novel (Star Wars), by James Luceno
Hero (Legend of Drizzt: Homecoming), by R.A. Salvatore
Star Wars: Complete Locations, by Jason Fry in addition to Kemp Remillard
Prey: Hall of Heroes (Star Trek), by John Jackson Miller
Star Wars: The Force Awakens, by Alan Dean Foster
Last Wish: Introducing the Witcher, by Andrzej Sapkowski
Star Wars: Darth Plagueis, by James Luceno
The Old Republic: Revan (Star Wars), by Drew Karpyshyn
The Path of Heaven (Warhammer 40K), by Chris Wraight
Star Wars: Aftermath, by Chuck Wendig

Graphic Novels

DC Comics Encyclopedia, by Matthew K. Manning in addition to Alex Irvine
The Walking Dead, Vol. 26: Call to Arms, by Robert Kirkman, Stefano Gaudiano, Charlie Adlard
Marvel Encyclopedia, by Matt Forbeckand Daniel Wallace
Batman: The Killing Joke, by Alan Moore in addition to Brian Bolland
The Walking Dead Compendium One, by Robert Kirkman, Stefano Gaudiano, Charlie Adlard
The Walking Dead, Vol. 1: Days Gone By, by Robert Kirkman, Stefano Gaudiano, Charlie Adlard
Black Panther, Vol. 1: A Nation Under Our Feet, by Ta-Nehisi Coates
Spider-Man/Deadpool, Vol. 1, by Joe Kelly in addition to Ed McGuinness
Watchmen, by Alan Moore in addition to Dave Gibbons
Rick & Morty, Vol. 1, by Zac Gorman, Marc Ellerby, in addition to CJ Cannon

Manga

The Legend of Zelda: Orcarina of Time, by Akira Himekawa
One-Punch Man, Vol. 9, by ONE in addition to Yusuke Murata
Tokyo Ghoul, Vol. 9, by Sui Ishida
Tokyo Ghoul, Vol. 1,
by Sui Ishida
Death Note: Black Edition, Vol. 1, by Tsgumi Ohba
My Hero Academia, Vol. 6, by Kohei Horikoshi
Naruto: Itachi’s Story, Vol. 1: Daylight, by Takashi Yano
Tokyo Ghoul, Vol. 2, by Sui Ishida
One-Punch Man, Vol. 1, by ONE in addition to Yusuke Murata
Attack on Titan, Vol. 1
, by Hajime Isayama

What books did you buy in November?

A Holiday Gift Guide for Manga Lovers

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A Holiday Gift Guide for Manga Lovers -

mangaholidayBuying gifts for manga fans can be a challenge; if they like a series, they undoubtedly already contain the latest volume. Fortunately, there are plenty of different options, as publishers expand the franchises in different directions with cookbooks, light novels, in addition to different “side dishes.” Here’s a look at some best bets for the otaku who’s been nice of which year (or naughty, if of which’s how you roll).

The Pokémon Cookbook, by Maki Kudo
of which book is actually billed as “Easy & Fun Recipes,” nevertheless the item was originally written for Japanese users, so some of the ingredients may be a bit hard to find (substitutions are suggested), in addition to some of the recipes require a modicum of artistic or culinary skill—while some are genuinely easy, others are downright fussy. of which said, the item is actually a genuinely fun cookbook, with instructions on creating Pikachu out of sweet potatoes, creamed corn, or eggs, as well as Poké Ball sushi in addition to all sorts of Pokémon-influenced bento boxes.

Osamu Tezuka: Anime & Manga Character Sketchbook, by Haruji Mori in addition to Osamu Tezuka
Osamu Tezuka: Anime Character Illustrations, by Haruji Mori in addition to Osamu Tezuka

Tezuka is actually known as the “godfather of manga,” in addition to one of the reasons for his popularity was his multitude of expressive characters. These two books are literally pages coming from his sketchbook, in which we see him refining in addition to varying the characters coming from Black Jack, Astro Boy, in addition to different classic manga in addition to anime, with notes (in Japanese, with translations) right on the page. Both books are hardcover; the anime sketchbook is actually 224 pages in addition to the anime in addition to manga sketchbook is actually 144.

Cosplay Basics: A Beginners Guide to the Art of Costume Play, by Yuki Takasou, Rumine, in addition to Kashiko Kurobuchi
The framing tale due to of which book is actually a manga about a girl whose friend invites her into the globe of cosplay. Together, they modify some off-the-rack clothes, shop for tools, fabric, in addition to props for a made-coming from-scratch costume, in addition to go to a cosplay event. These episodes are sandwiched between chapters of instructions on how to create, modify, in addition to accessorize costumes. The book actually takes you through creating a specific magical-girl costume coming from start to finish, with downloadable patterns for the main parts. As may be obvious coming from the cover, there’s a heavy focus on female cosplay. the item was originally written for a Japanese audience, nevertheless the editors have added English-language websites, most of which worked when I checked them. For extra fun, wrap the item which has a copy of volume one of Complex Age, a manga about a cosplayer in her 20s.

Blanc et Noir: Takeshi Obata Illustrations, by Takeshi Obata
Here’s a splurge for of which special someone: Blanc et Noir is actually a collection of Takeshi Obata’s work coming from 2001 to 2006, a period of which encompasses both Death Note in addition to Hikaru no Go. of which oversized, full-coloration book includes covers in addition to extra illustrations coming from both series, as well as some unrelated portraits, in addition to even a bit of Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo fan art. There are several absolutely gorgeous fold-out pages of which show off Obata’s work at its best. The book is actually presented in a slipcase with silver stamping in addition to an oval cutout, in addition to the item comes with laminated, double-sided posters. the item’s definitely a deluxe volume, nevertheless Obata delivers the goods.

Yoshitaka Amano: Illustrations, by Yoshitaka Amano
By comparison, Yoshitaka Amano: Illustrations is actually a solid bargain. which has a smaller, nevertheless still generous trim size in addition to no slipcover or posters, of which is actually nonetheless a real treat for fans of the illustrator of the Vampire Hunter D light novels in addition to character designer for the Final Fantasy games. Amano includes a romantic style reminiscent of the Pre-Raphaelite painters, nevertheless of which slim volume shows a broader range, including sketchbook pages, character designs, in addition to drawings in addition to paintings in a variety of styles, coming from unexpectedly cute to an obvious homage to the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt. The book also includes several lengthy interviews with Amano, creating the item a must-have for fans in addition to a fascinating read for newcomers.

Attack on Titan Anthology, by Scott Snyder et al.
Attack on Titan: End of the globe, by Touji Asakura in addition to Hajime Isayama

The supply of Attack on Titan books seems almost limitless, which has a huge shelf of volumes set within the globe of the hit manga in addition to anime series—manga spinoffs, light novels, gag manga, even The Science of Attack on Titan. We’re still waiting for someone to write an Attack on Titan cookbook (!), nevertheless within the meantime, here are two brand new books of which any fan should appreciate. For the Attack on Titan Anthology, publisher Kodansha Comics set a legion of non-Japanese comics creators, all of whom are fans of the series, loose within the walled city, in addition to they have created short stories using elements of the series as well as their own original ideas. Attack on Titan: End of the globe is actually not exactly brand new material, nevertheless a novelization of the theatrical movie, telling the familiar story in a different format.

What are you giving the manga reader in your life?