Newest Science Fiction Reviews

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XX by Angela Chadwick

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews LGBT Fiction, Science Fiction

Angela Chadwick's debut novel explores the possibility of two women being able to produce a baby girl through a process called Ovum-to-Ovum fertilisation. It centres around Rosie and Jules who take part in the first ever clinical trial that would allow them to have a child of their own without the need for a sperm donor or any other male intervention. What follows is a story that shows the harshness and at times disgraceful behaviour of the media, and the general public, when faced with a controversial technique that could lead to the demise of men. Full Review

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Rosewater by Tade Thompson

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Rosewater is a town on the edge. A community formed around the edges of a mysterious alien biodome, its residents comprise the hopeful, the hungry and the helpless - people eager for a glimpse inside the dome or a taste of its rumoured healing powers. Kaaro is a government agent with a criminal past. He has seen inside the biodome, and doesn't care to again - but when something begins killing off others like himself, Kaaro must defy his masters to search for an answer, facing his dark history and coming to a realisation about a horrifying future. Full Review

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Summerland by Hannu Rajaniemi

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Dystopian Fiction, Science Fiction, Paranormal

Imagine a world in which death was no longer something to fear but something to aspire to. After discovery of the afterlife, the British Empire has extended its reach into Summerland, the Big Smoke for the recently deceased. In 1938 the British Empire is caught up in a race against Soviet spies and dealing with a mole buried deep in the heart of Summerland. When Rachel White, an ambitious SIS agent, becomes suspicious about the potential rogue agent, she must decide how far she is willing to go and how much she is willing to risk to uncover the truth. Full Review

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The War in the Dark by Nick Setchfield

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Fantasy, Science Fiction

Europe – 1963. The world is used to the constant tensions between the West and Russia, with the Cold War a seemingly never ending threat in the lives of everyday people. What they don't know however, is that the real cold war is fought on the borders of this world, far from prying eyes at the edges of the light. British Intelligence agent Christopher Winter is forced to flee London when an assassination attempt goes horribly wrong, and is forced into a tense, unwelcome alliance with the lethal Karina Lazarova. As the threats rise, Christopher finds himself caught in a quest for centuries old hidden knowledge – an occult secret that will give instant supremacy to whichever nation possesses it. Racing against the enemy, Christopher is taken from ruins in Bavaria through to the haunted Hungarian border, all in search of something unholy – born of the power of white fire and black glass. It's a world of treachery, blood and magic. A world at war in the dark. Full Review

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Ascension by Victor Dixen

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Teens, Science Fiction

Six girls, six boys. Each in the two separate bays of a single spaceship. They have six minutes each week to seduce and to make their choices, under the unblinking eye of the on-board cameras. They are the contenders in the Genesis programme, the world's craziest speed-dating show ever, aimed at creating the first human colony on Mars. Leonor, an 18 year old orphan, is one of the chosen ones. She has signed up for glory. She has signed up for love. She has signed up for a one-way ticket. Even if the dream turns to a nightmare, it is too late for regrets. Full Review

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Empire of Silence (Sun Eater) by Christopher Ruocchio

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Hadrian Marlowe sits in the distant future writing the true account of his life to add context to a tale everyone in the Empire knows already. Empire of Silence is a hero's quest but it is made clear from the start that it will not end that way. We are millennia in the future, Earth has been lost and great houses rule portions of a vast empire. Hadrian Marlowe is set to inherit one of the great houses but following some terrible news he decides upon a new path instead. Full Review


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Elysium Fire by Alastair Reynolds

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction, Crime

What happens when Utopia is achieved? When everyone is linked neurologically to everyone else and people vote on each minor decision so every aspect of life is truly democratic? Everyone knows everything and everyone decides everything so what can possibly go wrong? Except people are dying, melting to be precise, and no one knows how, or why, or who could be next. In such a circumstance who can be trusted to solve this crime and do so without spreading panic? What if the only people who can be trusted have already let you down once before? Full Review

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The Beasts of Electra Drive by Rohan Quine

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction, Fantasy

Meet Jaymi. He's a world-class video games designer, and fresh to a new mansion in the Hollywood Hills on the basis of some recent success. But he's seen the future and he doesn't like it. His current employers, able to bring any amount of class, skill and culture to the world of gameplay, are beset on appealing to the most lunkheaded and lowest common denominators instead. Indeed, their next big thing will change the world for the worse – it will be a massively disturbing environment, where people progress through the world of the entity by spreading fake news about anyone and everyone else on the planet, whether they're playing along or not, and by getting kind of prestige points on spoiling and shaming anything beyond a user-accepted, algorithm-designed, status quo. With a much more Reithian approach, Jaymi goes freelance, and sets up a way of restoring the balance with a launch of his own, where aspects of his more humanitarian mind are played out by avatars of him in the game. He sees this as a way to improve society and get his own back – but the chance of getting revenge more quickly comes about when those avatars leave their encoded background, and become fully playable characters in reality… Full Review

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William Shakespeare's the Force Doth Awaken: Star Wars Part the Seventh by Ian Doescher

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction, Humour

A long time ago, in a galaxy far away, there was a man called William Shakespeare, who was able to create a series of dramatic histories full of machinations most foul, rulers most evil and rebellious heroes and heroines most sturdy. You may or may not have noticed the cinematic version of his original stage play for The Force Doth Awaken, but here at last we get the actual script, complete with annoying-in-different-ways-to-before droids anew, returning heroes from elsewhere in his oeuvre, and people keeping it in the family til it hurts. And if you need further encouragement, don't forget his audience only demanded three parts of Henry VI – here the series is so popular we're on to part seven – surely making this over twice as good… Full Review

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Places in the Darkness by Chris Brookmyre

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Living in 2017 has me longing to live in some sort of futuristic Utopia, in a world of free thinking and no major crime. Perhaps in a Space Station high above the Earth were the greatest minds have travelled so that they can build a vessel that will send the next generations of humans to populate new planets. You know that as soon as you arrive it will be the same old problems. You can't really have a Utopia with people in it, can you? Full Review

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Water & Glass by Abi Curtis

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews General Fiction, Dystopian Fiction, Science Fiction

Something has happened, something very nasty and on a submarine a pregnant elephant is one of only a handful of animals living below the waves. We follow Nerissa Crane, a vet, as she remembers recent events, looks after the animals and falls into a world of intrigue.

It is difficult to properly review this book without giving too much away. There will be mild spoilers throughout this right from the start but I will try to avoid the main ones. Full Review

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Philip K Dick's Electric Dreams by Philip K Dick

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction, Short Stories

Philip K Dick's stories were originally published in the 50s, but they are more present than past. On the big screen Blade Runner 2049 relaunched the Dick-inspired cult classic to reviews of pure praise; and on slightly smaller screens, Channel 4 has adapted the author's short stories for TV. Startlingly, Dick's current relevance reaches beyond fiction and into the factual: his topics from intrusive advertising and loss of privacy to the increasing machination of society are all headline material in today's news. It is as if half a century after their inception, Dick's electric dreams are becoming reality. Full Review

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Doctor Who: Now We Are Six Hundred: A Collection of Time Lord Verse (Dr Who) by James Goss and Russell T Davies

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Children's Rhymes and Verse, Science Fiction, Humour

Consider the Doctor. Just how many birthday and Christmas gifts must he have to hand out each year, were he to keep in touch with even half of his companions? He would certainly need a few novelty gifts for some of them, say, for example, whimsical books of verse that pithily encapsulate the life of a Time Lord and that of some of his friends and enemies. As luck would have it, he has the space in his TARDIS to stock up in advance, so my advice to him – sorry, her – would be to pop along to his local Earth-based book emporium and get himself ready. And if you're working on a shorter timescale, with a shorter lifespan, and thinking perhaps just one gift season ahead, well my advice is pretty much the same. Full Review

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Ghosts of Empire by George Mann

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Taking on a band of undead Mummies will take it out of the best of us and a holiday may be needed. If you are from New York there are not many other cities worldwide that could impress you, but London is one of them. Surely, a nice visit to England, far from the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple, will help you to relax. It is not as if Russian Tsarists are on the loose with magical powers or the events are conspiring to raise the sleeping power of Albion from its slumber. Is it? Full Review

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Artemis by Andy Weir

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Welcome to Artemis, the first city on the moon. A powerhouse for the rich and a once in a lifetime trip for earth tourists, and also a place a small community of citizens call home. Jazz Bashara is one such citizen. She came to Artemis with her father aged six, it's the only place she's ever known but she wouldn't say she's flourishing. In fact, the phrase most often used to describe Jazz is a waste of talent. Jazz lives in the low end of town, sleeping on a bunk, using a shared bathroom, which is all she can afford through her job as a porter. However, Jazz dreams above all else of being rich and to this end, she has set up a side business of illegal smuggling activity. When one of Jazz's regular clients wants her to step up from petty criminal to major criminal for a handsome reward, it is just too tempting to refuse. What Jazz doesn't know is all the facts behind what she is being asked to do. Full Review

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My Name is Sam by Wes Stuart

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Who is the real enemy? This is the question which confronts Sam, the champion of the Sereia in their cosmos-spanning war with the Gibbus, and the main character in this story. Sam is an unimposing boy who has no past and no memory of who he is, yet he possesses extraordinary abilities. He is also Earth's last hope for salvation from the Gibbus who, in seven days, will destroy the planet and everyone on it. This is not his choice however: that is the decision of the alien Sereia, his mentors and guides, as he is forced to confront this hazardous task. They have their own reasons for wanting Earth to be saved, but are too weak to challenge the Gibbus themselves. In their search for a human champion they find the unlikely and ill-prepared young boy, Sam – but this child is not quite as he appears… Full Review

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Sea of Rust by C Robert Cargill

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Have you ever watched the Terminator movies or some similar 'Robo-geddon' franchise and wondered what would have happened if the robots had actually won? Well wonder no more, because Sea of Rust hinges on that exact premise; a world where the robots have wiped out every living thing from planet earth. Only artificial life remains; there is no trace of organic matter anywhere, since the robot uprising that devastated the planet. Now two huge mainframes compete for world domination: CISSUS and VIRGIL. They capture robots and turn them into drones; uploading their minds into a hive consciousness. The few remaining bots are called 'freebots,' and inhabit a desert called the Sea of Rust, where they do what they can to survive, including cannibalising other bots for spare parts. Full Review

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Austral by Paul McAuley

link=Category:{{{rating}}} Star Reviews Science Fiction

Austral has no doubts about who she is. Her birth was, as she puts it, a political act. Conceived in a laboratory dish by direct injection of sperm into an egg. I was customised by a suite of targeted genes… She was, as the jargon of her world has it edited. She is, as a result, a Husky. A human modified to withstand the cold temperatures of the Antarctic continent. Those temperatures are still hard for un-modified humans to survive in, but maybe not for much longer. This is a world in which the threats of global warming went unheeded…a world in which the ice has retreated and continues to retreat…a world in which the harshest of environments is being opened up for exploitation. Full Review