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Old 09-26-2009, 12:35 AM   #46
AnemicOak
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Ok, we need more nominations. I'll throw these two into the ring. I haven't read either one, but they're on my 'maybe read someday' list. Both are available free.


Accelerando by Charles Stross
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Product Description
Expanding upon his award-winning short story cycle from the pages of Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, Charles Stross-author of such revolutionary science fiction novels as Singularity Sky and Iron Sunrise-delivers the story fans have been anticipating with Accelerando, a novel destined to change the face of the genre.

For three generations, the Macz family has struggled to cope with the rampant technological achievements that have rendered humans near obsolete. And mankind's end encroaches even closer when something starts to dismantle the nine planets of the solar system in an effort to annihilate all biological lifeforms.

From the Inside Flap
"A new kind of future requires a new breed of guide-someone like Stross."-Popular Science

"Where Charles Stross goes today, the rest of science fiction will follow tomorrow." -Gardner Dozois, Editor, Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine

Charles Stross "can be compared to Greg Egan, Stephen Baxter, and Vernor Vinge for the depth of his speculations" (Paul Di Filippo, Science Fiction Weekly) as proven in such innovative hard SF novels as Singularity Sky ("wonderfully inventive"*) and Iron Sunrise ("[a] hard SF masterpiece"**).

Now, expanding upon his award-winning short story cycle from the pages of Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, Charles Stross presents a startling vision of humanity's inability to cope with rapid technological advancement.

The Singularity. It is the era of the posthuman. Artificial intelligences have surpassed the limits of human intellect. Biotechnological beings have rendered people all but extinct. Molecular nanotechnology runs rampant, replicating and reprogramming at will. Contact with extraterrestrial life grows more imminent with each new day.

Struggling to survive and thrive in this accelerated world are three generations of the Macx clan: Manfred, an entrepreneur dealing in intelligence amplification technology whose mind is divided between his physical environment and the Internet; his daughter Amber, on the run from her domineering mother, seeking her fortune in the outer system as an indentured astronaut; and Sirhan, Amber's son, who finds his destiny linked to the fate of all of humanity.

For something is systematically dismantling the nine planets of the solar system. Something beyond human comprehension. Something that has no use for biological life in any form...

An ideological tour-de-force, Accelerando is destined to stand beside Neuromancer and Snow Crash as one of the most seminal works in science fiction.

*The Denver Post
**Library Journal
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From Publishers Weekly
Stross (Singularity Sky) explores humanity's inability to cope with molecular nanotechnology run amok in this teeming near-future SF stand-alone. In part one, "Slow Takeoff," "free enterprise broker" Manfred Macx and his soon-to-be-estranged wife/dominatrix, Pamela, lay the foundation for the next decade's transhumans. In "Point of Inflection," Amber, their punky maladjusted teenage daughter, and Sadeq Khurasani, a Muslim judge, engineer and scholar, try to escape the social chaos that antiaging treatments have wreaked on Earth by riding a tin can–sized starship via nanocomputerization to a brown dwarf star called Hyundai. The Wunch, trade-delegation aliens evolved from uploaded lobster mentalities, and Macx's grandson, Sirhan, roister through "Singularity," in which people become cybernetic constructs. Stross's three-generation experiment in stream-of-artificial-consciousness impresses, but his flat characters and inchoate rapid-fire explosions of often muzzily related ideas, theories, opinions and nightmares too often resemble intellectual pyrotechnics—breathtakingly gaudy but too brief, leaving connections lost somewhere in outer/inner/cyber space.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist
*Starred Review* During the last five years, Stross has garnered a reputation as one of the most imaginative practitioners of hard sf. Expanded from several stories originally published in Asimov's Science Fiction, Stross' latest novel follows several generations of the Macx family through the rapidly transforming, Internet-enabled global economy of the early twenty-first century to the human and transhuman populated worlds of the outer solar system a half century later. The saga begins with Macx patriarch Manfred, a freelance "venture altruist," giving away patentable high-tech ideas in exchange for endless handouts while looking forward to the day when nanotech-programmed smart matter surpasses humanity in intelligence and productivity. Fifteen years later, his adolescent daughter Amber is an indentured astronaut trolling the orbit of Jupiter, and by 2070, Sirhan is Amber's permanently space-bound offspring, paying witness to the fruits of his grandfather's early innovations as something ominous and nonhuman is systematically dismantling the planets from Pluto to Earth. Stross has his thumb squarely on the pulse of technology's leading edge and exults in extrapolating mere glimmers of ideas out to their mind-bending limits. His brilliant and panoramic vision of uncontrollably accelerating technology vaults him into the front rank of sf trailblazers, alongside Gibson and Stephenson, and promises to become a seminal work in the genre. Carl Hays
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved




Union of Renegades: The Rys Chronicles Book I by Tracy Falbe
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Product Description
The Rys Chronicles begin with this character-rich adventure that follows the travels of Dreibrand Veta, an ambitious warrior who seeks to rebuild his noble family’s fortune. He is the first to join the powerful rys spellcaster Shan, whose race possesses magical powers and whose Queen Onja rules many human kingdoms as their Goddess. The wickedness and tyranny of Onja disgust Shan and he desires to seize the rys throne from her. The third renegade is Miranda. After escaping from her abusive slave master, she becomes a crucial player in Shan’s bid for power. To weaken Onja, Shan raises rebellion among her human subjects and gathers allies to his cause. Shan demonstrates his magic in battle and convinces his followers that the fearsome rys Queen can be overthrown. For over two thousand years Onja has ruled, but now, not even fear of her ability to enslave souls will stop her ambitious enemies.

From the Back Cover
Dreibrand Veta has killed for his country. At the frontlines of imperial expansion, he seeks to rebuild the fortune of his noble family. In his daring travels he encounters the rys, a race far more powerful than the human empire that bred him. Dreibrand cannot defy the rys Queen Onja nor defend his companion, Miranda, and her children from the wicked tyrant Queen. Desperate for help, Dreibrand and Miranda join Shan, a rys with emerging powers who plans to challenge Onja. In Shan's pursuit of the rys throne, he exerts his magical powers, gathers his allies, and incites rebellion among Onja's human subjects. Great wealth and power will reward the kings, warriors, and spies that align themselves with the rys pretender, but defeat could mean worse than death. Onja can imprison souls and her genocidal rage is legendary. Everything is at risk for Shan's union of renegades.
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Review
"This is a great read with plenty of intrigue, magic, terror, wizardry, spells, and subplots to grip the reader..." -- Crystal Reviews, January 2006

"Tracy Falbe makes a stunning debut in epic fantasy..."

"An exciting treat for fantasy buffs..." -- Small Press Bookwatch, February 2006
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