I just want to announce the release of The Emergence of Latin American Science Fiction edited by Rachel Haywood Ferreira, which is now available.
Here’s the table of contents:
• List of Illustrations
• Introduction: Latin American Science Fiction Discovers Its Roots
• DISPLACEMENT IN SPACE AND TIME: THE LATIN AMERICAN UTOPIA AND DYSTOPIA
• Fósforos-Cerillos, “Mexico in the Year 1970”
• Joaquim Felício dos Santos, Pages from the History of Brazil Written in the Year 2
• Eduardo Ladislao Holmberg, The Marvelous Journey of Mr. Nic-Nac . . .
• Eduardo de Ezcurra, In the Thirtieth Century
• Godofredo Barnsley, S<<atilde>>o Paulo in the Year 2 . . .
• Eduardo Urzaiz, Eugenia
• THE IMPACT OF DARWINISM: CIVILIZATION AND BARBARISM MEET EVOLUTION AND DEVOLUTION
• Augusto Emílio Zaluar, Doctor Benignus
• Eduardo Ladislao Holmberg, Two Factions Struggle for Life
• Leopoldo Lugones, “Essay on a Cosmogony in Ten Lessons,” “The Origin of the Flood,” “Yzur”
• Joaquim Manuel de Macedo, “The End of the World”
• Aluísio Azevedo, “Demons”
• Amado Nervo, “The Last War”
• Martín Luis Guzmán, “How the War Ended in 1917”
• STRANGE FORCES: EXPLORING THE LIMITS OF SCIENCE
• Eduardo Ladislao Holmberg, Two Factions Struggle for Life [coda]
• Carlos Olivera, “Death at a Fixed Hour”
• Leopoldo Lugones, “The Omega Force,” “Psychon,” “An Inexplicable Phenomenon,” “Viola Acherontia,” “Metamusic”
• Miguel Cané, “The Harmonies of Light”
• Juana Manuela Gorriti, “He Who Listens May Hear—To His Regret: Confidence of a Confidence”
• Pedro Castera, “A Celestial Journey,” Querens
• Amado Nervo, The Soul-Giver, “The Sixth Sense”
• THE DOUBLE: FROM SCIENCE TO TECHNOLOGY
• Eduardo Ladislao Holmberg, “Horacio Kalibang or The Automatons”
• Alejandro Cuevas, “The Apparatus of Doctor Tolimán”
• Horacio Quiroga, The Artificial Man, “The Portrait,” “The Vampire”
• Conclusion: A Global Genre in the Periphery
• Chronology: Latin American Science Fiction through 1920
• Primary Texts
• Secondary Sources
MK:I’ve read, in other interviews, that you’re a frequent traveler and have lived in a number of different cities. Why did you choose to leave London? Do you think that your travels have affected your writing? Where do you see yourself heading next?HO: I like cities and their different personalities; I like making friends with them, London is alright, but we aren’t best friends or anything, so I’m looking for a best friend. We’ve got to choose each other. I don’t think my travels affect my writing all that much— here I am in Berlin, working on something set in England—and I feel too embarrassed to type the name of the city I’m going to next, because it’s actually a city I’ve already lived in for a little while before deciding it wasn’t for me. But I recently changed my mind. (This city isn’t London. But it feels a bit like getting back together with a blatantly unsuitable boyfriend—you don’t want to tell anyone unless you’re getting married…)
Lavie Tidhar’s Osama Released for the Kindle
Osama, published by PS Publishing in the UK, has been called “intensely moving” by Interzone, and a “powerful and disturbing political fantasy by a talent who deserves the attention of all serious readers” by Strange Horizons.
Osama tells the story of a private detective hired to locate the obscure writer of pulp novels featuring one Osama bin Laden: Vigilante. The detective’s quest takes him from Vientiane to Paris, London, New York and Kabul, across a subtly-changed world where nothing is quite as it seems – including himself.
Locus called the novel “a provocative and fast moving tale that raises good questions not only about the heritage of Al Qaeda, but about the slippage between reality and sensational fiction that sometimes seems to define our own confused and contorted experience of the last couple of decades.”
Tidhar is the author of the popular steampunk novels The Bookman and Camera Obscura, and is a current World Fantasy Award nominee for his work on the World SF Blog.
PS Publishing is the award-winning publisher of limited hardcover editions by the likes of Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, China Mieville and Lawrence Block, among others.
A DRM-free e-book edition of the novel, in mobi and epub formats, is also available directly from PS Publishing, as are the hardcover edition and a signed hardcover edition limited to just 100 copies.
Ibn Safi is the pen name of Asrar Ahmad (1928-1980) who was a legendary and prolific Urdu fiction writer from Pakistan. He is one of the better known Science Fiction writers of Urdu, although his mostly famous for writing crime fiction and spy novels. He mostly famous for his works Jasoosi Duniya (Spy World) and the Imran Series of novels. His works are well known in Pakistan, India and in some cases even Bangladesh.
Cheryl Morgan has posted links to video recordings of the various panels in Eurocon and one of them is “European SF On The Move” featuring eaturing Darko Macan, Alexander Royfe, Volodymyr Arenev, Cristian M. Teodorescu, Marian Truta. You can watch the video here.
This issue of Asimov’s features a wide range of stories, from post-apocalyptic settings, to deep space, to plague-ridden colony worlds. Several of the stories cover grim material and feature disturbing characters.
Most/all people who donated to the fund should have now received an e-mail with the appropriate reward. A few still need follow-up e-mails – we’ll try to clear these by the beginning of next week. If you have any concerns e-mail us and we’ll follow it up as soon as possible.
Many thanks once again to everyone who donated – We hope you enjoy the books!
Over at SFWA, Nick Mamatas and Masumi Washington list, and comment on, the list of all-time best Japanese SF, as voted on by readers of Japan’s SF Magazine in 2006.
1. Hyakuoku no hiru to senoku no yoru
(Ten Billion Days and One Hundred Billion Nights) by Ryu Mitsuse (1967)
An epic, cosmic adventure in the manner of Arthur C. Clarke, covering the evolution of humanity, the lives of Plato, Christ, and the Buddha, a future technodystopia, and the very heat death of the universe itself. For pure “sensawunda,” it gets no better. Haikasoru will be releasing this book in its first English translation in November 2011. Longtime US SF readers may remember Ryu Mitsuse’s “The Sunset, 2217 A.D.,” which appeared in Frederik Pohl’s Best Science Fiction for 1972.
2. Hateshinaki nagare no hate ni
(At the End of the Endless Stream) by Sakyo Komatsu (1966)
Thematically similar to Mitsuse’s epic, Komatsu’s story involves a young physicist shown an hourglass, the sand of which never stops flowing. Even stranger, the glass was discovered buried in a stratum associated with the Upper Cretaceous. The hourglass is key to a billion-year war in which humans are pawns…and then humans begin to vanish. Sakyo Komatsu was one of the grandmasters of Japanese SF—three of his books appear in this top ten list—sadly, he passed away in July 2011, at the age of eighty. – continue reading!
Kenya’s The Nation has a fascinating new article by Joseph Mwella on African writing and Western expectations:
On July 28, on this page appeared an article about how Kenyan writers and readers allegedly idolise the West.
The article started by quoting extensively, a review by the Economist on Binyavanga Wainaina’sOne Day I Will Write About This Place.
What was laughable was the attendant irony linking a Western magazine’s scathing attack on an African writer and accusing African writers and readers of idolising the West all in one breath.
The net effect was an article laden with intellectual conmanship.
Quoting the Economist’s negative review merely because the book doesn’t subscribe to the Western prescription of an African book, and accusing African writers and readers of idolising the West is the height of insincerity.
I read the manuscript of One Day I Will Write About this Place sometime last year and it was incredibly fresh.
Its language is cassava chips crispy, its events real and closer to home than anything I have read by a contemporary Kenyan writer.
Outside the foreign observer Michela Wrong in It’s Our Time to Eat, no recent literary work captures modern Kenya as Binyavanga’s memoir.
The Bookforum review says this of the book: “He does not present one mythical continent, but rather a fractured, complex, and ever-shifting collection of experiences.”
In essence a fresh new examination of Africa in a way the world doesn’t see it.
This Africa the world doesn’t see is what theEconomist’s reviewer doesn’t like.
He would rather the usual African pornography of poverty, war, disease and death.
Well, death is in One Day, but it’s dignified. The writer’s mother dies. Apparently that death isn’t gritty enough to meet the Economist’s approval. Africans should not die with dignity, but from war or disease or poverty! – continue reading.
The Portal interviews Lavie Tidhar, about the World SF Blog, nomination for the World Fantasy Award, the World SF Travel Fund, writing and new novel Osama:
Q: What does the blog’s tagline “ideologically suspect” encompass?
A: Well, it’s a bit tongue-in-cheek, obviously. Occasionally I’d play with different sub-headings. But I think it has a serious undertone, too: that we’re challenging a lot of the underlying assumptions of “default” sf/f. You know, when James Gunn says, “American science fiction is the base line against which all the other fantastic literatures in languages other than English must be measured”–you know–all other fantastic literature!–then yes, ideologically we’re thousands of miles apart. Physically too, of course! We’re saying, “This isn’t how things are, or should be.” And if it means poking the occasional stick at a bloated and egotistical corpse, then hell, let’s have fun doing it, at least!
Q: What’s the story of the World SF Travel Fund’s genesis?
A: The fund is something I’ve been kicking around for a while, but it was the current list of World Fantasy Awards nominations–particularly, Charles Tan being nominated in the Special Award – Non Professional category – that helped crystallize the idea into a tangible form. I felt–we felt–that Charles deserved to be there for the ceremony, whether he won or lost–and of course he couldn’t go. The stark reality is that he could never afford it.
So we got together–quite a few people–to make this happen. First, to bring Charles over for the World Fantasy Convention and, second, to be able to help other people that way in the future. It’s very exciting being able to do that! – read the full interview.