Last Build Date: Sun, 09 Apr 2017 20:22:06 +0000
Sun, 09 Apr 2017 20:22:06 +0000Borne is Jeff VanderMeer’s first new novel since his Southern Reach trilogy. I was stunned by reading it, and I am not sure that I can really do it justice. The novel is set in a post-apocalyptic landscape: a nameless city that was first transformed by a biotech enterprise known only as the Company, and … Continue reading "Jeff VanderMeer’s BORNE"
Mon, 16 Jan 2017 20:33:58 +0000WARNING: numerous spoilers, since I cannot really discuss the novel without them Tade Thompson’s extraordinary new SF novel Rosewater is the second recent book I have read with the premise of extraterrestrials arriving in Nigeria. The first is Nnedi Okorafor’s Lagoon, equally wonderful, but in an entirely different way. Both novels go explicitly against the … Continue reading "Tade Thompson, ROSEWATER"
Sat, 31 Dec 2016 19:57:43 +0000I am usually not very good at top ten lists and the like; there is always too much stuff that I haven’t seen, read, or heard. But I think that I have done a lot better than usual with new science fiction / fantasy / horror / speculative fiction than usual. So here is a … Continue reading "Favorite SF of 2016"
Wed, 28 Dec 2016 01:15:50 +0000Gerry Canavan’s new book on Octavia Butler is smart and useful. It gives a good introduction to Butler for people who have never read her before, but it also provides much food for thought to those who (like me) have already read all of Butler’s published works, and know them well. This is the case both … Continue reading "Canavan on Octavia Butler"
Sun, 23 Oct 2016 18:32:13 +0000This is a brief (and quickly written) commentary on an old talk by Ray Brassier, about Nick Land, dating from 2010. The questions around speculative realism, accelerationism, and Land’s current politics are all still with us today. Brassier describes Land’s philosophical project, its impetus, its originality, and why it ends in an impasse that Land … Continue reading "Ray Brassier on Nick Land"
Fri, 07 Oct 2016 03:07:31 +0000I really like the Francophone Swiss director Alain Tanner, and I wish to see him recovered from his current oblivion. I originally saw some of his films in the 1970s, the only period when they were released in the US with English subtitles. They are long since out of circulation in the English-speaking world, but … Continue reading "Alain Tanner, JONAH WHO WILL BE 25 IN THE YEAR 2000"
Fri, 19 Aug 2016 18:30:20 +0000Frank Ocean’s Endless contains lots of gorgeous music, though it is difficult to take it all in on first listen. The music is mostly low-key, soulful r&b, but mutated with a lot of electronica and various fuzz effects. (While Ocean’s music sounds very different from that of Dawn Richards, they can both be described as … Continue reading "Frank Ocean, ENDLESS — first thoughts"
Thu, 03 Mar 2016 22:20:49 +0000This is a general statement, nothing really new. I was writing it in another context, realized I didn’t need it, decided to post it here. Affect theorists tend to distinguish between affect and emotion. I will start with the latter, because it is easier to explain. Emotions are personal experiences or states, like anger, disgust, … Continue reading "Affect/Emotion"
Sat, 06 Feb 2016 01:18:16 +0000Nalo Hopkinson’s short story “Message in a Bottle” was originally published in 2004; it can currently be found in her recent collection of short stories Falling in Love With Hominids, as well as in her short volume Report From Planet Midnight. [MY DISCUSSION CONTAINS SPOILERS, OBVIOUSLY. So you really shouldn’t read this until after you … Continue reading "Nalo Hopkinson – “Message in a Bottle”"
Thu, 28 Jan 2016 21:32:42 +0000Tricia Sullivan has long been one of my favorite contemporary science fiction authors. Her past books include the amazing MAUL. It has two plot lines: in one, set in present-day New Jersey, teenage girls engage in gang warfare at the mall; in the other, set in the far future, men are almost extinct due to … Continue reading "Tricia Sullivan – Occupy Me"