SF

RECENT REVIEWS

William Gibson’s Breakfast Burrito

William Gibson’s Breakfast Burrito

NEAR THE END of The Peripheral, William Gibson’s latest novel, there is a short chapter dedicated to the problem one character faces in acquiring a breakfast burrito. The burrito is for one of the ...

No Escape

No Escape

IN THE EARLY months of 1944, half a year before the Russians liberate Auschwitz, one of the protagonists of Lavie Tidhar’s A Man Lies Dreaming overhears a conversation between two of his fellow inma...

The Genetics of Genre, the Genre of Genetics

The Genetics of Genre, the Genre of Genetics

SERGEI LUKYANENKO’s sci-fi novel The Genome was first published in Russia in 1999, but 15 years later, in English translation, it’s future is still, somewhat wearisomely, our future. At least sinc...

A Subtle Weave of Layers

A Subtle Weave of Layers

DESPITE INVOLVING GLOBAL apocalypse, planetary colonization, and an evangelical mission to preach to aliens, Michel Faber’s The Book of Strange New Things is not the work of revelations that its tit...

What Does Not Exist

What Does Not Exist

AROUND THE MIDDLE of the second century of the Christian Era, Lucian, a satirist from Samosata in what is now Turkey, wrote A True History, which included an extravagant tale of voyagers swept up to ...

Feminus Ex Machina

Feminus Ex Machina

WHAT IS THE EQ of an AI? The question is at the heart of veteran screenwriter Alex Garland’s directorial debut Ex Machina. Drawing on a long science fiction tradition, in which androids are seen ei...

Galadriel, Witch-Queen of Lórien

Galadriel, Witch-Queen of Lórien

AT A MEMORABLE moment in The Fellowship of the Ring, Peter Jackson’s 2001 film adaptation of the first part of J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, the company of heroes rush into a dense fo...

Alternative Californias

Alternative Californias

KIM STANLEY ROBINSON is best known as a novelist of scale, a creator of complex futures and universes of sublime magnitude. His Three Californias (or Orange County) trilogy (1984-90), for example, off...

Strange Tales

Strange Tales

IN THE FOREWORD TO the Bantam 1992 reissue of her first collection of short fiction, Artificial Things (1986), Karen Joy Fowler recounts a time in her life when she was the author of all of three sh...

Language and Monsters

Language and Monsters

LAST MONTH, Mike Cahill’s first feature film, Another Earth, opened in limited release across North America. The notices have been good, identifying it as a measured, contemplative film, which, al...