RaveThe Wall Street JournalRegular readers of sci-fi know Martha Wells from her Murderbot Diaries ... Witch King is a fantasy novel about as far from Murderbot as it’s possible to get, and the fact that the author does it so well is a testament to her range and abilities ... What starts off seeming to be the tale of two vampiric lovers who kill and consume anyone in their way turns into a story far more complicated and fascinating ... Ms. Wells creates uniquely fascinating cultures and abilities for the people who live in her universe, including magic systems that are fully developed and beautifully described.
PositiveThe Wall Street JournalThe pace of the book is relentless. Although the plot is bloated, The Ferryman proves hard to resist as a feat of addictive storytelling. As each layer of the story’s onion is sliced open, what lies beneath might be predictable but remains intriguing. Mr. Cronin’s constant descriptions of women’s looks in relation to their age are primeval at best, but if you can get over that The Ferryman is an adventure read rich with ships that sail both the oceans and the stars.
PositiveThe Wall Street JournalMr. Ballingrud makes this whole strange scenario work with surprising ease ... Characters sometimes act unbelievably, and there are jarring moments of darkness ... I would have preferred to explore more of this new/old Mars. I wanted to meet the ancient, John Carter-style aliens who may have lived there and the tribes that escaped Europeans by living in the Martian deserts.
RaveThe Wall Street JournalIn classic old-school adventure style ... Ascension is a lovingly retold version of a classic horror thriller, but with more humanity and real emotion; it is the story of a broken man and what redemption looks like in the real world. Plus, of course, tentacles ... It would be hard to deliver an ending that satisfies all the curiosity built in the first 95% of this excellent page-turner; there’s a reason that the heroes in these kinds of stories tend to go mad, rambling on vaguely about horrors incomprehensible to the mind of men ... And yet Mr. Binge does actually try to explain everything that happens, and why. He deserves credit for the spectacular chutzpah of the attempt, but I will leave it to the reader to judge how successful it is ... Thoroughly recommended.
MixedThe Wall Street JournalThe plot and characters are too thin to really sink your teeth into. And though my tolerance for the gruesome is higher than your average bear’s, when our hero digs into a giant pile of amputated legs searching for his lover it’s a bit much, even for me ... If you’re a devoted fan, Veniss Underground may be for you.
M. R. Carey
PositiveThe Wall Street JournalThe three connected tales that weave through Infinity Gate explore the concept of self in intriguingly different ways ... Sometimes the author veers into strange, seemingly Covid-inspired diatribes ... The writing is vivid, the pace is fast-moving in all storylines. My one real quibble is a nagging feeling that these three plotlines are actually three completely separate book ideas that the author might be trying to wedge together into one cohesive storyline, which will have to be fleshed out in sequels to come.
Yuri Herrera, trans. Lisa Dillman
RaveThe Wall Street JournalGenre-defying ... Most of the shorts are non-categorizable ... The loss and disconnection are reminiscent of Paul Auster or Miranda July—or the more obscure works of J.G. Ballard ... There is a fascinating—if affected—afterward by the translator who walks through some of the decisions she made both in word choices and sentence structure; it’s a very satisfying peek into the process of translating both literal meaning and nuance ... Overall, a highly original set of voyages to imaginary worlds that shed unexpected light on our own.
PositiveThe Wall Street Journal... a collection of solid, well-written yarns that would have been groundbreaking to a teen comics reader 30 or 40 years ago (me again) ... Technically, Mr. Moore’s writing is as brilliant as ever—from dizzying wordplay in scene-setting detail to cuttingly succinct summaries ... As for the stories themselves, there is no shortage of wild invention ... Loyal fans of Mr. Moore in all his incarnations will love this collection. Boring grown-up people who can also appreciate a well-written \'graphic novel\' (a term the author despises) will also enjoy them—if while sighing a little, with, it has to be said, nostalgia.
RaveThe Wall Street Journal[The Truth and Other Stories] turns out to be a brilliant introduction to Lem’s science fiction. In its pages one can find him testing out multiple styles and themes, from the quirky to the seriously philosophical. All its tales are incubators, growing and playing with ideas that would eventually become the mainstay of his novels and treatise ... More than half a century ago, Stanislaw Lem gazed into the future and saw, rather than rockets or ray guns, the evolution of the synthetic mind and the humans creating it. Thanks to these translations, English-language readers can share in his vision—long after he first imagined the internet and its thinking machines.