S&L Podcast - #361 - My Little Space Brain Friends

Are we excited for The Witcher? Probably? Are we excited for the Hitchhiker's Guide Hulu TV series? Maybe? Are we excited for Vessel? In some ways? Is Tom excited for The Poppy War? YES!

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Hudson Four-Grain Bourbon

Veronica: Old Potrero

QUICK BURNS

Joanna: One of the many news from Comic-Con: The Witcher teaser is here

Dara: The British Fantasy Award nominees were announced.

Best Fantasy Novel (the Robert Holdstock Award):

The Bitter Twins, by Jen Williams (Headline)

Empire of Sand, by Tasha Suri (Orbit)

Foundryside, by Robert Jackson Bennett (Jo Fletcher Books)

The Green Man’s Heir, by Juliet E McKenna (Wizard’s Tower Press)

The Loosening Skin, by Aliya Whiteley (Unsung Stories)

Priest of Bones, by Peter McLean (Jo Fletcher Books)

Dara: The World Fantasy Award Finalists were announced.

Novel

- In the Night Wood by Dale Bailey (John Joseph Adams/Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)

- The Mere Wife by Maria Dahvana Headley (MCD/Farrar, Straus & Giroux)

- The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang (Harper Voyager)

- Witchmark by C. L. Polk (Tor.com)

- Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse (Saga Press)

The winners will be announced at the convention October 31st to November 3rd and will be held in Los Angeles.

TRP: Hulu are planning a HitchHikers' Guide To The Galaxy series.

Dara: BookRiot compiled a list of 50 Must-Read Fantasy Books by Women. There are quite a few S&L picks, including August's pick, The Poppy War. As always, no list is definitive but I always appreciate them because I end up with more books on my never-ending TBR list."

Trike: Amazon has renewed The Expanse for a fifth season: Season 4 debuts Dec 13.

Sean Lookielook: HBO Max is ready to explore Greek mythology.

The forthcoming streaming service has handed out an eight-episode, straight-to-series order for Circe, a modern take on the world of Greek mythology based on Madeline Miller's best-seller of the same name."

BARE YOUR SWORD

How many S&L books had you read this year before they were announced as picks so far?

My library has fallen victim to ransomware

Astronaut Pee Pee

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Next Month: The Poppy War by R. F. Kuang

Book briefing

WRAP UP

Vessel by Lisa Nichols

Book briefing

Aooogha! Whoo whoo! Bad science alert!

VSL: (Spoilers) was anyone else underwhelmed by the

VSL: Characterization

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #360 - Cuddling with Direwolves

Veronica is definitely not meeting direwolves in Ireland and stealing them and smuggling them back into the United States. Definitely not. Tom likes the Rook. A great database for finding queer SF/F books. And our thoughts so far on Vessel by Lisa Nichols.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Water

Veronica: pink wine

QUICK BURNS

Any news or announcements

Congratulations to Mary Robinette Kowal for winning the Locus Award for Best Science Fiction Novel The Calculating Stars, a previous Sword and Laser pick.

And Ursula K. Le Guin continues to make her presence known to us after she is gone as Ursula K. Le Guin: Conversations on Writing won best Non-fiction book and The Books of Earthsea: The Complete Illustrated Edition with Charles Vess wins Best Art Book

The complete list of winners is listed here on Tor's site

Clyde: The Rook has started on Starz. I reckon the first episode hit all the right notes.
I wonder how closely they will follow the book. Might be difficult to do it all in eight episodes.Mark: What to Read this Summer Based on Your Favorite 'Star Trek' Character. Many of the recommendations will be familiar to S&L readers!

Dara: George R.R. Martin revealed some tidbits about the new Game of Thrones series, including which Houses fans can expect to see. Yes, the Starks and direwolves. No Lannisters.

You can read more at Entertainment Weekly.

David: The US TV broadcast of the Le Guin documentary, "Words of Ursula K. Le Guin" will finally air August 2 on American Masters (on PBS):

taeli: Sarah Waites created a database for Queer SF/F. It's only got about 70 entries now, but she's taking suggestions.

Mark: Jade War Swag!
Release day for Jade War is July 23

BARE YOUR SWORD

Feedback from the audienceWhat it's like to read 1950s science fiction

Hi, Tom and Veronica. Just listened to the latest podcast, in which you
were speculating about Rosamund Pike, who has been tapped to play
Moiraine Damodred in the TV series of The Wheel of Time. According to
IMDB, she wasn't in any of the Twilight Saga movies, which you had
thought she was. But it's interesting that you tagged her as the "Cool
Girl" Cullen sister in those films, because her big breakthrough was
starring as Amy Dunne in "Gone Girl" - and both the book and film are
known for her "Cool Girl" rant.

Dave W.

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Vessel by Lisa Nichols

Book briefing

Aooogha! Whoo whoo! Bad science alert!

@El_Commutador
Some thoughts about #Vessel @swordandlaser :wink:

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

Thanks to Chris Darnell, Kristin Pilotte, and Judi Serrato

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #359 - We Have Literary Opinions

We’re so excited about our guest pick! It’s the kickoff for our July book, and the first ever-not-in-any-way chosen by Tom or Veronica. Also we love XKCD and we love Station 11. Also Dara and Terpkristin. So much love!

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Agua

Veronica: Fancy aqua

QUICK BURNS

Dara: Rosamind Pike has been cast as Moiraine in Amazon's adaptation of The Eye of the World.

Dara: Stan Lee's first adult novel is going to be released on September 17, 2019.
A Trick of Light, co-authored by Lee and Kat Rosenfield, is the first chapter in Lee’s planned “Alliances” universe.
Readers can start following the Alliances story starting June 27th on Audible as read by Yara Shahidi (black-ish, grown-ish)

Dara: Via Entertainment Weekly, Maniac showrunner Patrick Somerville will be adapting former book pick Station Eleven for WarnerMedia's streaming service. Hiro Murai will direct to 10-episode limited series.

BARE YOUR SWORD

Feedback from the audienceLiterary Opinions (xkcd comic)

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

It is time to kick off our July book pick, and while close followers of the Goodreads and Patreon already know this, neither one of us made the pick this month! We took some time to chat with our guest about the book she picked. Who could it be? let's find out. Vessel by Lisa Nichols

Book briefing

Our next episode is July 17!

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser.

Thanks to www.patreon.com/notificationsYou can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks/

S&L Podcast - #357 - The Last Beagle

We're excited for a trip to the Hunger Games' past and to hear Tatiana Maslany show us her Orphan Black chops again. Plus, Veronica takes on a Jim Butcher challenge and our final thoughts on The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle.

Direct download here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: The Force

Veronica: Golden State Cider

QUICK BURNS

Rob: Jim Butcher is nearly done with Peace Talks!!

Hopefully this means we get the book sometime next year...

Dara: Suzanne Collins is releasing a prequel novel to the Hunger Games series. The untitled Panem book will be set 64 years before the events of the original trilogy and will be about a failed rebellion. You can read more about it on US News.

Rob: Tatiana Maslany is going to narrate a 10 part book series of Orphan Black that picks up after the show end

Tamahome: Quentin Tarantino to make a Star Trek, probably with piles of blood. Get these motherfucken tribbles off my ship!

Dara: Terry Pratchett's The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents is set to be adapted into an animated film. According to Variety: They hope to release the film in early 2022.

Dara: George R.R. Martin has written a video game called Elden Ring with Hidetaka Miyazaki. The game is from the same studio that made Dark Souls and Bloodborne. The game is an RPG and Martin created the mythos. From the Polygon article:

BARE YOUR SWORD

THE MARTIAN CHRONICLES, Ray Bradbury. I read this #book when I was young and loved the powerful evocation of place and loss. Reading it again decades later is like revisiting my childhood by meeting myself on the desolate hills of lost Mars. Hey, Mars needs women. @swordandlaser

From JP: My wife and I were shopping at a used bookstore today, and this was outside the store. Thought of you and @swordandlaser.

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle

Book Briefing

TLU: Reads Like a Parable

TLU: Poor Mr. Beagle!

Snopes article

Next week: We announce the guest pick! Be the first to know by joining the Patreon... .or you can just wait for Rob to announce it in Goodreads too. That also works.

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #356 - Greetings from Tom Merritt, Illinois

We’re cautiously pessimistic about Winds of Winter, but hey wouldn’t that be cool? Also we discover what famous authors we live in (yes, you read that right, live in) and our initial thoughts on The Last Unicorn. PLUS an astonishing announcement about next month’s pick!

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Strawberry Ramune

Veronica: Glory Juice Company #19

QUICK BURNS

Air New Zealand offered to give George R. R. Martin a free vacation to help him find peace and quiet to finish the Winds of Winter. In reply Martin wrote "As for finishing my book… I fear that New Zealand would distract me entirely too much. Best leave me here in Westeros for the nonce. But I tell you this — if I don’t have The Winds of Winter in hand when I arrive in New Zealand for Worldcon, you have here my formal written permission to imprison me in a small cabin on White Island, overlooking that lake of sulfuric acid, until I’m done. Just so long as the acrid fumes do not screw up my old DOS word processor, I’ll be fine."

Rob: Things are looking up for The Thorn of Emberlain.
Scott Lynch just posted a photograph of what I appears to be the finished draft on his tumbler.

Mark: Eight science fiction stories to read now before seeing them on TV & Film

Dara: Marvel is adapting a bunch of their comics in to audiobook format. They'll be in a "read-to-me" style (I'm not entirely sure what that means) and will be available in September. The Verge has the list of books being adapted.

Tassie Dave "Read-to-me" means there will be also be a book for children to read along with while they listen to the story.

BARE YOUR SWORD

Do you live in a SF or F author?

I've Done It !! I'm the greatest un-Lemmer in the history of the world!
That's hardback people, thats 800 pounds of Murakami gg

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

NEXT MONTH'S PICK - We're not announcing it yet but next month will be our first ever GUEST PICK! Something we'd like to do from time to time to help vary up our picks even more. We're very happy that Brea Grant, writer filmmaker actor and host of the Reading Glasses podcast will be choosing our July book! Stay tuned for more

JUNE: The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle

Book Briefing

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

Thanks to Adrian Sarmiento

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #354 - More Than a Bookstore to Me

Tom had fun at the Nebulas, and we’re excited about the winners. We also kick off a new book, wrap up the last one and give our thoughts about the Game of Thrones finale.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Les Portes de Bordeaux 2017

Veronica: Nothing, still hungover from last weekend

QUICK BURNS

Nebula Winners

Novel: The Calculating Stars

Novella: The Tea Master and the Detective

Novelette: The Only Harmless Great Thing

Dramatic: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

Dara: The Folio Society is releasing a beautiful edition of A Game of Thrones in July. The book will come with original artwork by artist Jonathan Burton and an introduction by Joe Abercrombie. It will be in two volumes and it won't be cheap - $195 for the set. You can read more at The Verge.

Tamahome: Incomparable podcast read all the nebula nominees and have an episode about them. They'll do the Hugo noms too.

BARE YOUR SWORD

Buzz says: Great time at the Los Angeles Sword and Laser (@swordandlaser) meetup in North Hollywood with Kelly, Lisa and Ali. Next one on Jun 15 or Jun 29. We put the LA in Sword and Laser! See you soon! #swordandlaser #SandLLA

Benedict says I haven't read many sci-fi books BUT I am thoroughly enjoying 'the long way to a small angry planet' by Becky Chambers. I believe it was mentioned on @swordandlaser not that long ago, possibly a monthly read? Anyway, sorry you two, I've only just got round to it.

Nancy says: Today I switched things up on my blog by posting about my favorite podcasts. Includes @BlastBurnRadio @thecreativepenn @deletethispod @swordandlaser @todayexplained and @writingexcuses (among others!)

Sword and Laser is the podcast that I’ve been listening to the longest. Honest by Veronica Belmont and Tom Merritt, The Sword and Laser is a fantastic resource for news related to science fiction and fantasy books and authors. They also run a monthly book club with some wonderful choices. If it hadn’t been for The Sword and Laser, I surely would have missed out on some fantastic books."

More than a bookstore! ♪♪ More than a bookstore to meeeee....

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle

Book Briefing

WRAP UP

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Book Briefing May 2019 - The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

How we felt about Game of Thrones TV show

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #353 - Whiskey by Bob

Locus Award finalists! Great supplementary material for the Martian Chronicles! Why we need utopias! AI Whisky! ALL THAT AND MORE! Sorry. We're really excited about this episode. We hope you will be too.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Water

Veronica: Golden State Cider

QUICK BURNS

Nokomis.Fl Dennis E Taylor's rewrite of Outland coming to Audible on May 16th.

Dara 2019 Locus Awards finalists announced

CY: My wife and I went to see "Exploring Mars," by National Geographic, the day before I began Martian Chronicles. If it's going to be in city close to you, it's worth the ticket price.

Mark: Dedication of Ray Bradbury statue planned for August 2019 in his hometown, Waukegan, Illinois.

William: On Thursday the 16th of May the BBC podcast/radio show In Our Time will be about Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein.

They have discussions on 853 other topics to download including the famous “Year Without Summer” that sparked the writing of Frankenstein.

The format of the show is that several leading experts are invited to discuss the topic in a sort-of narrative style. You feel as if you are listening to a story even though you’re really listening to top experts having a discussion. The host, Melvyn Bragg, deserves a lot of credit for keeping things flowing and understandable.

Trike: NASA has officially named the 2024 moon landing after Artemis, the sister of Apollo. It will include the first woman to walk on the moon. I think the entire crew should be women astronauts.

William: The Guardian has published an article advocating for the writing of more positive Science Fiction.

It briefly looks through the history of both dystopian and utopian fiction and considers why we are so suspicious of utopias.

It argues that while the world is far from ideal, many of us are in what others would call a utopia to the extent that rather than most people dying before adulthood we even ""have time to be outraged that chickens are ill-treated"". Positive visions of the future can allow us to build a better world.

BARE YOUR SWORD

Mel says: Joining in with @swordandlaser as they’re finally reading The Martian Chronicles. I’ve been voting for it for years and had this copy waiting the whole time!

Scott says: Hey folks - saw this and instantly thought of the distillery business in the Bobiverse!

—-

David says: Catching up on sword and laser podcast, saw that Veronica is looking for comic book recommendations.

Echo by Terry Moore or Rachel Rising by Terry Moore.

Scooby-doo Team up is a great book, I like it because it's one book = one adventure

Batman: Long Halloween

RASL by Jeff Smith

Sam and Fuzzy by Sam Logan (www.samandfuzzy.com) a fun web comic

Best,

David

—-

"Jenny says: Hi Tom and Veronica,

It's your loyal librarian, bringing you the OED entry on ""scrumpy.""

I also wanted to say that I know I read Rivers of London because of others in Sword and Laser and was surprised to realize it was never an official pick! That series is amazing in audio.

Thanks,

Jenny"

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Book Briefing May 2019 - The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #352 - The Sword Conspiracy

To Gene Wolfe! Thank you for Shadow and Claw and Pringles. Plus, William Gibson’s Alien 3, what you need to know before reading The Martian Chronicles, and our final thoughts on the vast conspiracies that make up Theft of Swords….and OUR SHOW?!!! DUH DUH DUH!

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Strongbow

Veronica: Stoked Cider in "Scrumpy"

QUICK BURNS

Dara and AndrewP: Author and SFWA Grand Master Gene Wolfe passed away on April 14th at age 87.

Robert: Coincidentally, shortly after hearing the news, I was snaking on some Pringles chips and looked them up on Wikipedia to see how they were made. And according to Wikipedia:
Gene Wolfe, a mechanical engineer-author known for science fiction and fantasy novels, developed the machine that cooks them.

Our interview with Gene Wolfe

Dara: Tor announced the British Science Fiction Association winners on their website.

Dara: Titan Books is publishing The Art and Making of The Expanse in October.

Nokomis.FL - William Gibson’s Unproduced ‘Alien 3’ Script Getting an Audio Drama Featuring Michael Biehn as Hicks! Offered on Audible!

TRP: As previously mentioned as a possibility round here
Aaronovitch Ben has just tweeted that the TV series adapted from his Rivers of London books are to be made by Simon Pegg & Nick Frost’s Stolen Picture production company

TRP: Circe by Madeline Miller has been shortlisted for the 2019 (UK) Women's Prize for Fiction

TRP: Tom Merritt (yes, that one) said on Cordkillers (a podcast apparently) that Laura Donnelly has been cast in Joss Whedon's The Nevers
According to IMDB The Nevers is "An epic science fiction drama about a gang of Victorian women who find themselves with unusual abilities, relentless enemies, and a mission that might change the world."
Sounds a bit like The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter by Theodora Goss which is also in development

Nokomis.FL - A manuscript in author Anthony Burgess's archives appears to be a follow-up to the book A Clockwork Orange. The 200-page work is titled The Clockwork Condition and contains thoughts on the human condition and moral panic in reaction to the release of the film adaptation of A Clockwork Orange.

BARE YOUR SWORD

—-

Thea says: Hi, I recently discovered your podcast and am working through the archive. Back in 2009, Tom mentioned he was reading Evelyn Waugh's The Sword of Honour Trilogy. Currently a bit disappointed with the SF and fantasy books I've been reading, I decided it was time to switch genres. I'm enjoying it immensely, so thanks.

—-

New Twitter Review from Beth Mitcham! She says "HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE, J. K. Rowling. Had fun rereading this #book with @swordandlaser. Great kids eye view of the world and clearly made for reading aloud. I had more sympathy for Malfoy this time round; he’s a good Harry foil."

—-

@sblackmoore (a.k.a author Steven Blackmore) says: "I would like to publicly say, and this might be the only time I say it or he'll get a swelled head, but @BrianTMcClellan is awesome.

So awesome that he gave me a shout out on @swordandlaser for the Eric Carter books.

Thank you. Your check is in the mail"

—-

@El_Commutador says: "@swordandlaser I like the sense of humor in this one! :wink:

I'm listening to "Theft of Swords: Riyria Revelations, Volume One" on @Scribd!

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Book Briefing May 2019 - The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

Wrap Up

Theft of Swords by Michael J. Sullivan

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #351 - Uncanny Collateral Brian McClellan

Brian McClellan is the author of the Powder Mage Universe books as well as essays on the life and business of being a writer. He describes himself as living on the side of a mountain in Utah where he writes books and nurses a crippling video game addiction. His most recent book, Uncanny Collateral, is described (on Brian's Twitter) as "Harry Dresden meets Dog the Bounty Hunter in a fast-paced urban fantasy about a collection agent who works for the supernatural."

Download directly here!

Brian McClellan

@briantmcclellan

Stephen Blackmoore

S&L Podcast - #350 - Rye-ear-ah

So many great books are nominated for Hugos. Independent Bookstore Day is coming up and the proper pronunciation of Riyria! and we kick off our impressions of the refreshing and comfy feelings we’re getting from the thoroughly enjoyable Theft of Swords.

Direct download here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Smithwick's Red Ale

Veronica: Bulleit Rye

QUICK BURNS

The finalists for the Hugo Awards have been announced.

"Mark: It’s that time of year again - that’s right, Independent Bookstore Day is almost upon us! Celebrations will be held on Saturday, April 27th in locally-owned and operated bookstores across the US (I couldn’t find any information on international participation, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still support your local bookstores across the globe regardless). To find out more info, you can visit the official Independent Bookstore Day website:

In particular, if you want to find out which stores near you are participating, you can search for them via this interactive map.

Dara: Patrick Rothfuss was on the The B&N Podcast and talked a bit about progress on The Doors of Stone and the Kingkiller TV adaptation. Newsweek has the story if you're not interested or able to listen to the podcast.

From the article:

'Kingkiller, my work on the books, is—again, it might seem strange for people to hear—but nobody laments the lack of tangible progress more than me, in terms of the next Kingkiller book,' Rothfuss said. 'But things are moving forward, if not fast—again I’ve never promised fast, ever since I knew what I was good at professionally.'

'But I am moving forward,' Rothfuss told B&N’s blog editor Joel Cunningham. 'More importantly, I’m finally getting my life sorted out so that I can go back and approach my writing and my craft with the joy that I used to feel back in the day, when I was just an idiot kid playing D&D or working on my unpublishable fantasy novel.'"

Take your time, Pat. We'll be here when you're finished. <3

Dara: Via Barnes & Noble SFF blog, Catherynne Valente Is Writing a Sequel to Space Opera. Yes, it Is Called Space Oddity. Expected release date is Spring 2021.

Mark: Fonda Lee's first podcast short story is up at The Overcast.

Julie and Tamahome: N. K. Jemisin makes her comics debut (with artist Jamal Campbell) with Far Sector, a unique Green Lantern story for DC’s Young Animal imprint.

John and Seth: Vonda McIntyre has died.l

BARE YOUR SWORD

"I know mispronouncing things is a cornerstone of Sword and Laser, but when its the name of the entire series, I though I could provide the suggestion.

Michael J. Sullivan says the official way to say it is:

Rye-Ear-Ah

Rye as in the grain

Ear as in the body part

and ah, that's how you say Riyria." William Keaton

—-

Just finished the enchanting Kingdom of Copper (sequel to City of Brass) by @SAChakrabooks, which has had me under its spell for weeks. The Daevabad trilogy is absolutely worth your time, as is her interview on @swordandlaser. Can’t wait to see how it ends. Peter V. Brett

The book shop that wasn't quite just a book shop

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Theft of Swords by Michael J. Sullivan

Book briefing

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

Thanks to Andor Andorson, Ethan Poole and all the folks who support us at patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #349 - Sit Down Kid, I Got This

So many books became options! We’re hopeful. Also we’re excited to read our March Madness winner, Theft of Swords. And why Dumbledore may or may not be an irresponsible headmaster.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Yes Way Rosé

Veronica: Pacific Coast Bone Dry Hard Cider

Thanks to everyone who took part in March Madness!

QUICK BURNS

Joe: Seanan McGuire's Wayward Children series of novellas has been optioned for television.

There are four novellas published so far, more on the horizon, and it is legitimately one of my favorite things. The first, Every Heart a Doorway, won the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus Award for Best Novella. I wrote in my review at Nerds of a Feather that "Every Heart a Doorway is a beautiful and heart wrenching story of kids who don't belong anywhere except perhaps the one place they can't get back to." It is a story that feels like coming home.

Tamahome: Love, Death & Robots has been released on Netflix. It's a series of animated shorts. A lot of them are adapted genre short stories by John Scalzi, Alastair Reynolds, Ken Liu, Joe Lansdale, Marko Kloos, and Peter F. Hamilton. ... The tone is kind of like Heavy Metal (It has some roots in it). Plenty of sex and violence. Of course the Scalzi ones are more humorous.

Mark: Brian McClellan's new self-published fantasy novel, Uncanny Collateral, is available direct from the author before official release date.

Adrian: The Laundry Files by Charlie Stross has been optioned for a TV show. This time it's by an English producer so the author is more optimistic

Dara: Nnedi Okorafor is set to write the Wild Seed series adaptation for Amazon Prime. Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions will be producing and Wanuri Kahiu will direct.

"Wild Seed is a love (and hate) story of two African immortals who travel the ages from pre-Colonial West Africa to the far, far future. "

BARE YOUR SWORD

Started from the first one again a few days ago for the @swordandlaser and as a warm up for @readathon :) re: Harry Potter. Readathon is a twice-yearly 20 hour readathon, happening again on April 6th. Learn more here! http://www.24hourreadathon.com/

Read all the books! (From the S&L bookshelf)

Subject: Tom pronounces something wrong shocker
Message: Berwick-upon-tweed
ˌberɪk əˌpɒn ˈtwiːd
See OED.
You can try the Geordie of Newcastle as well but that isn't standard.
Superhero bit of bullet dodging Veronica.
pob

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Theft of Swords by Michael J. Sullivan

Book briefing

Final stats:

Final Thoughts onHarry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone

HP: Dumbledore Is a Horrible Teacher (spoilers for the end)

A Star Wars Is Born – “Shallow” Parody (Nerdist Presents) - YouTube

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

Thanks to Erin, Scott and Juliana

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #348 - Book Battle Royale

We review the final four books in our Mad March Tournament. Plus lots of great new award-winners and nominees to fill your to-read list and our continuing thoughts on our re-read of Harry Potter.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Regret

Veronica: Despair

QUICK BURNS

Ruth: Michael B Jordan's production company and Warner Bros have scooped up the movie rights to Black Leopard, Red Wolf.

Dara: March is Women's History Month and Syfy's Fangrrls is celebrating women with a limited podcast series called Forgotten Women of Genre. The first episode is about Carol Clover and the Final Girl.

ALSO: It’s early morning. You’re tired. You were up late listening to the latest episode of the Sword and Laser podcast. You look in the mirror as you brush your teeth. Your reflection is Sam Sykes.

"Good morning! I bet you think I’m going to tell you to buy my book. I’m not. I’m here to tell you that nominations for the 2019 Hugo Awards are open and you should nominate Sword and Laser. I know I am! (Also buy my book.)"

How he managed to get all of that out through a mouthful of toothpaste, you’ll never know.

---------------
Instructions on how to vote can be found here. Check your email for individual links for online nominating. Voting ends Friday 15 March, 2019, 11:59 PDT.

Silvana: Circe, a past S&L pick, is included in the long list for the 2019 Women's prize for fiction, along with some other writers, such as the one highlighted in this article, a non-binary trans author from Nigeria Akwaeke Emezi with her novel Freshwater.

Stubble: The episode titles for the first four Wheel of Time series episodes have been revealed and seems to indicate that the first season will be based on book 1 and 2. The titles have been revealed by images of each script's first page.

The episode titles are
1 Leavetakings
2 Shadow's waiting
3 A place of safety
4 Dragon reborn

On the fourth script image there's a faint trace of episode 6 being named The flame of Tar Valon which indicate events in the beginning of book 2.

You can find information about this on the Daily Trollock

Dara: Martha Wells's Murderbot will return in a full-length novel in 2020 called Network Effect.

TRP: Trailer is out for the Starz adaptation of The Rook by Daniel O'Malley It all looks a bit dark and serious. I seem to recall the book had a lighter touch. Probably worth a watch

Game of Thrones' Final Season Trailer: Be Prepared for Death

Amazon revealed a finalized map for its Lord of the Rings series March 7 with the island of Númenor in the lower left hand corner, which confirmed the Amazon show’s Second Age setting. In “The Lord of the Rings,” trilogy, Númenor has been destroyed for thousands of years and serves as a lost city in Middle-Earth’s history. (Hat Tip to Stubble who noted this as well)

BARE YOUR SWORD

I am committed to reading every single @swordandlaser starting from the beginning. And if I like the first book, I’ll continue with the entire series. -- From Priscilla Basilio

Mark Ferrando has our old set! It's amazing! "I'm a former employee of Pixel Corps, the company which used to shoot the video episodes of Sword and Laser. After the show wrapped the company had to dismantle the set, but it had nowhere to store it and was just going to throw it out. I managed to arrange it so that the set elements were transported to my parents' home in Petaluma where we rebuilt it in their garage (with some modifications to fit the geometry of the available space). Ever since we have used it to host community games nights, family reunions, and other festivities, and we have added our own embellishments over the years, including a custom carbonite statue of my sister, mementos from various conventions, and a menagerie of dragons to take the place of Lem (I'm not quite sure where he ended up, although I think we might have the smoke machine and tubing that was used to help bring him to life)."

Just found the new episode for @swordandlaser , thank GOD. It’s Tuesday evening but this is like audio CRACK. :pray::+1::heart: -- Benedict

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

MARCH MADNESS CHECK-IN

Theft of Swords by Michael J Sullivan

Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North

The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury

BOOK CHECK IN

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone

Book briefing

HP: The Dursleys were kind of right

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks/

S&L Podcast - #346 - Accio Book Pick!

So many good TV shows based on books that we love are coming, and we even got a movie with a casting announcement that made Tom very excited! Plus, our final thoughts on The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal and the kick off of what we assume is a re-read for most of you, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s/Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling. Come on. Read it again! It’s fun!

We are GO for March Madness! Head to Goodreads or find the link on swordandlaser.com to vote for your favorite books.

Download directly here!

QUICK BURNS

Dara: The Nebula Award Finalists were announced:
- The Calculating Stars, Mary Robinette Kowal (Tor)
- The Poppy War, R.F. Kuang (Harper Voyager US; Harper Voyager UK)
- Blackfish City, Sam J. Miller (Ecco; Orbit UK)
- Spinning Silver, Naomi Novik (Del Rey; Macmillan)
- Witchmark, C.L. Polk (Tor.com Publishing)
- Trail of Lightning, Rebecca Roanhorse (Saga)

Dara: There's a new teaser for season 4 of The Man in the High Castle. It also announces that this will be its final season

--------------
A man sits alone in a cabin. A cap is perched on his gray hair, glasses are askew, suspenders are taut. A computer running WordStar 4.0 sits abandoned. On a laptop, a Livejournal entry is incomplete.

"This is my true purpose," the man mutters.

A browser page is reflected in his glasses. 2019 HUGO NOMINATIONS, it reads. A field labeled Best Fancast stands empty, pregnant with potential. "Sword and Laser," he says aloud as he types.

---------------
Instructions on how to vote can be found here. Check your email for individual links for online nominating. Voting ends Friday 15 March, 2019, 11:59 PDT.

Joanna: The two latest casting news for Villeneuve’s Dune:
Josh Brolin is Gurney Halleck and Jason Momoa is Duncan Idaho.

Dara: All 6 episodes of Good Omens will premiere on Amazon Prime on May 31st. Also announced: Bandersnatch Cooterscoot will be playing Satan.

Clyde: Asimov's magazine have made all of their Readers’ Award finalists available for free reading on-line.
Some good reads there. I particularly enjoyed Kristine Kathryn Rusch's and Linda Nagata's stories.
Thank you Asimov's.

Dara: Adam Christopher is writing the Stranger Things prequel about Hopper. Stranger Things: Darkness on the Edge of Town will be out June 4th.

Genesee: Article on a recently released fantasy book, the "African Game of Thrones". Roxane Gay talks to Marlon James about his African myth-inspired 'Black Leopard, Red Wolf'

“The thing about a lot of West fantasies is that it’s still following European archetypes,“ James said. “Evil is clearly evil. Evil is Sauron. That reflects a Calvinist, Christian worldview.”

Louie: Daniel H Wilson ( Robopocalypse ) pens sequel to Michael Crichton's The Andromeda Strain .
The Andromeda Evolution will be released on November 12

Colin: Philip Pullman news. The details of his next novel in the Dark Materials universe are out. Includes a link to an excerpt.

BARE YOUR SWORD

Footnotes in Sci Fi and Fantasy Novels

2019

Being a patreon means receiving little surprises in the mail. Thank you @acedtect @Veronica for the all too relevant political sci-fi and @swordandlaser sticker

I'm trying to access the interview with RA Salvatore at but the video is no longer available. Do you happen to still have a copy of this? My understanding is that it covers some of the reactions to WotC (Wizards of the Coast) changing the Forgotten Realms with 4E D&D from the perspectives of the poor folks working with the material and I'd really like to hear that kind of thing.

Cheers,
Chris

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

KICK OFF

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's/Sorcerer's Stone

Book briefing

Last thoughts on The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks/

S&L Podcast - #345 - Math as a Magic System w/ Mary Robinette Kowal

We chat with Mary Robinette Kowal, the author of this month’s pick, The Calculating Stars. From acknowledging and learning from your biases, to de-stigmatizing mental illness, to using math as a magic system, we had a lovely time and don’t care WHAT people would think.

Download directly here!

March Madness is upon us! Nominate books for the tournament next month in our Goodreads forum until 8 PM Eastern February 25.

Hugo-award winning author, Mary Robinette Kowal is a novelist and professional puppeteer.

Sword and Laser video episode

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

Book Briefing

S&L Podcast - #344 - Steamy

So many news stories! We have to speed through them but there are some good picks from lots of award winners in there. Plus, the best pajamas ever and whether Calculating Stars is steamy!

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: Armagnac

Veronica: Irish Bessie

QUICK BURNS

Dara: Instructions on how to vote for the Hugos can be found here. Check your email for individual links for online nominating. Voting ends Friday 15 March, 2019, 11:59 PDT.

Dara: In order to drum up support for nominating the podcast for the 2019 Hugo Award for Best Fancast, I asked a few authors for an endorsement on Twitter*.

"You want me to support the Sword and Laser podcast for Best Fancast? You guys have read three of my books so I guess I have to." – John Scalzi

"Buy my book." – Sam Sykes

"Don’t buy his book, buy MY book." – Myke Cole

"You’ve read three Scalzi books but none of mine? No thanks." – Mary Robinette Kowal

"I get it, you loved Jade City. Please stop bothering me. I’m going to block you." – Fonda Lee

There ya have it, folks. Even authors love the podcast! Nominations are open! Go vote!

* Please note these are all 100% satire and made up for the lolz.

March Madness is upon us! Nominate books for the tournament next month in our Goodreads forum until 8 PM Eastern February 25

Dara: The Wheel of Time TV series will go into production in the fall of 2019. Tor has all of the details.

Seth: This year's American Library Association mid-winter conference just wrapped up, and in addition to their more famous awards for youth titles (like the Newbery and Caldecott), they also make adult picks in a number of genres. Their pick of 2018's crop of sci-fi is next month's S+L pick - “The Calculating Stars” by Mary Robinette Kowal. On the fantasy side they chose “Foundryside” by Robert Jackson Bennett.

Full list of picks across genres is here

Anne: Tor is now offering a newsletter with short fiction on a bimonthly basis which seems like a nice way to get SFF stories delivered straight to your inbox. More information is here.

Aaron: Clarkesworld Magazine is expanding into books with a new translation.A Hundred Ghosts Parade Tonight and Other Stories by Xia Jia

Mark: An excerpt of the deleted novella from the Wheel of Time, "A Fire Within the Ways" is on Tor's website now. This will be included in the Unfettered III collection out in March.

Joe: The Locus Recommended Reading List is has been published online (it will also be in the February issue of Locus Magazine.

I don’t think this is an original idea, but I’ve long considered the Locus Recommended list to be one of the best snapshots of what is going on in the genre in a given year. It’s certainly not exhaustive, and there’s always going to be favorites left off the list (Scalzi didn't make it for either of his books, the newest / final Sin du Jour novella from Matt Wallace didn't make it, only one of Mary Robinette Kowal's Lady Astronaut novels are on the list, etc), but from a high level - these are most of the important and noteworthy SFF books and stories from the previous year.

Aaron: There is a new J.R.R. Tolkien Biopic set to release May 10, 2019.

Mark: From Locus, the announcement for the Crawford Award. 2019 winner is The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

The Crawford Award is given to a fantasy author whose first fantasy book was published during the preceding 18 months. It's one of several awards presented by the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts, and is presented at the conference each March in Ft. Lauderdale.

Rob: The Expanse Season 3 goes worldwide on Amazon Prime February 8th!
Additionally Seasons 1 and 2 will now be on Prime everywhere (previously it was just North America).

Anne: There's an interesting article on WIRED about how women were actively written out of Sci-Fi history by omitting their contributions from anthologies. There's a podcast episode about it, too, though I haven't gotten around to listening to it yet.

Nokomis.FL - New Robert Heinlein novel to be published in November 2019 from a manuscript written in the early 1980s.

Moar Lists!!

From the House of Random Penguins

The Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time
and
The Best Fantasy Novels of All Time

Should I be suspicious that these lists are on a publisher website even though they are the best of All Time?

Lots of S+L picks. Maybe there is a future S+L pick too.

-- and as Shad notes, this does seem to be the best books of all time from Random House owned publishers

BARE YOUR SWORD

Feedback from the audienceWhile is raining like crazy outside, nothing like a good book and a fireplace - @yaniv05

Poetry Slam happening over in the Ninefox Gambit discussion - @markmtz

If you were a high school English teacher what would be the first book you would make your students read?

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal

Book Briefing

TCS: Is it just me, or does this pick feel like Veronica is missing vaginal fantasy?

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #343 - Math Is Hard

We’re very pleased that the Hugo Nominations are open and we’ll keep reminding you. Also we’re pleased to discuss pairing beer with novels and pleased to look over the new Philip K. Dick award nominees. We’re pleased to be reading Ninefox Gambit too, even if it makes our brain hurt.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Tom: St. George's Terroir Gin

Q Spectacular Tonic

Veronica: Ballast Point Sculpin

QUICK BURNS

Dara: SFWA Announces Newest Damon Knight Grand Master – William Gibson

Dara: Hugo nominations are now open

Dara: Medieval book historian Erik Kwakkel writes about "Siamese twin" books on his blog, including one that opens 6 different ways. They're almost like the Frankenstein's monsters of books but serve a cool function.

"They are like Siamese twins in that they present two different entities joint at their backs: each part has one board for itself, while a third is shared between the two. Their contents show why this was done: you will often find two complementary devotional works in them, such as a prayerbook and a Psalter, or the Bible’s Old and New Testament. Reading the one text you can flip the 'book' to consult the other."

He also says, "In the 20th century this type of binding enjoyed a revival with the Double Ace books, which featured two short science fiction stories." The post has some pretty cool images of the books.

Conal: Dennis E. Taylor announces Bobiverse sequel to be duology -"this means that I’m now back to writing the next Bobiverse book(s), working title “The Search for Bender.” I say book(s) because it looks like it’s going to be a duology. And spoiler alert — the end of book one will be a cliff-hanger,"

Mark: We need more lists like this. Granted, it's a short list, but two of the five books are S+L picks, and there's beer!

Speculative Fiction on Tap: Winter Books, Winter Beer

Dara: The nominees for the Philip K. Dick award were announced. Via Tor, "The Philip K. Dick Award is presented annually with the support of the Philip K. Dick Trust for distinguished science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States during the previous calendar year."

BARE YOUR SWORDDave Barrett: Review of Animal in Man by Joseph Asphhani

Help me find a Sci-fi slice-of-life story, please

Veronica has been reading comics! She has read Sage Vol. 1+2, Wicked + Devine Vol 1, reading Bitch Planet, and download Locke and Key and Shuri Vol 1

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

Book Briefing

NG: I have no concept of any of this

From the thread via David: Yoonh Ha Lee has aphantasia; he can't visualize things.

We're changing our tiers! If you're at a tier right now don't worry this doesn't affect you BUT for new people The entry level tier will be $2 now AND include the monthly book briefing. . That change will happen before the end of the month!

ADDENDUMS

Our show is currently entirely funded by our patrons. Thank you to all the folks who back our show and if you would like to support the show that way head to patreon.com/swordandlaser

You can also support the show by buying books through our links! Find links to the books we talk about and some of our favorites at swordandlaser.com/picks

S&L Podcast - #342 - So, You're a Crow Nut?

We’re SO excited for books coming out this year, AND we award our favorite Sword and Laser reads for 2018! We finish with our final thoughts on Crows.

Download directly here!

WHAT ARE WE DRINKING?

Veronica: The Patsy: Coconut Rye Stout from Barley Forge Brewing Co.

Tom: Caffeine-free Coke Zero

QUICK BURNS

Rob: Jim Butcher posted a free Dresden Files short story on his website. Until it crashed. Then he re-hosted it on Google Drive.

Pratik: The Verge has put together a handy list of anticipated science fiction and fantasy books to be released in 2019 written by some of our favorite authors. These include: Katherine Arden; S.A. Chakraborty; Charlie Jane Anders; edits and translations by Ken Liu; Ann Leckie; William Gibson; and many more. Checkout the article for the full list!

Julie: Fonda lee's Jade War, the sequel to the August pick, is out in July.

Trike: A whole bunch of classics entered the public domain on January 1st. P.G. Wodehouse, Agatha. Bristle, Joseph Conrad, Rudyard Kipling, etc.

BARE YOUR SWORD

In the spirit of the Giving Season: Patreons of favorite authors?

Favourite Sword and Laser Book Pick 2018

Reading printed editions vs digital

Comic Book Recommendations:

Fredrik says: I'm reading Captain Marvel, and @Veronica should do too!

Tamahome says: The first three volumes of Saga comics (from Image) are perfect.

Linnea says: I think there are several series' from Image Comics that you might like, Veronica. Saga, Rat Queens, Wicked + Divine, Descender, Bitch Planet and Lazarus. Maybe even Monstress and Fatale, though they venture a bit into the horror genre (not very scary, just a fyi).

KBTibbs says: Some have recommended Saga and Bitch Planet and those are some great comics in collected editions. I also think Monstress (which did VERY well at the Eisners this year) has a potential. As does Wicked and Divine. Neil Gaiman's Sandman is an omnipresent recommendation for a reason.

BOOK OF THE MONTH DISCUSSION

Kick Off

Ninefox Gambit by Yoon Ha Lee

Book Briefing

Which Faction Are You?

LAST THOUGHTS

Ka: Dar Oakley in the Ruin of Ymr by John Crowley