The Masterharper of Pern

MasterSinger Merelan and Harper Petiron were a brilliant and devoted couple. Merelan was the most outstanding soprano ever heard on Pern, and was often the only one who could master Petiron's technically accomplished compositions. When, after a long and difficult birth, Robinton was born to them, it should have been the culmination of a unique partnership. But Petiron, almost from the first day, had no time for his son, refusing to see the incredible talent the boy possessed, ignoring his achievements and maintaining a strict and disapproving vigilance over him at all times. Carefully, secretly, the Harper Hall took over, training the greatest talent Pern had ever seen - a talent that was more than just musical, for Robinton was able to talk to the dragons of Pern. As constant sadness beset his personal life, so a startling career sent him like a meteor through the Holds and Weyrs of Pern until, as MasterHarper, he became part of the great plan to rescue Lessa from the brutal rule of Holder Fax - Lessa, who was to be the saviour of the dragons of Pern.
Views: 3 045

The Fall of Hyperion

In the stunning continuation of the epic adventure begun in Hyperion, Simmons returns us to a far future resplendent with drama and invention. On the world of Hyperion, the mysterious Time Tombs are opening. And the secrets they contain mean that nothing--nothing anywhere in the universe--will ever be the same. From the Paperback edition.
Views: 2 929

Monsters of Men

As a world-ending war surges to life around them, Todd and Viola face monstrous decisions. The indigenous Spackle, thinking and acting as one, have mobilized to avenge their murdered people. Ruthless human leaders prepare to defend their factions at all costs, even as a convoy of new settlers approaches. And as the ceaseless Noise lays all thoughts bare, the projected will of the few threatens to overwhelm the desperate desire of the many. The consequences of each action, each word, are unspeakably vast: To follow a tyrant or a terrorist? To save the life of the one you love most or thousands of strangers? To believe in redemption or assume it is lost? Becoming adults amid the turmoil, Todd and Viola question all they have known, racing through horror and outrage toward a shocking finale.
Views: 2 914

Fire Watch

Winner of six Nebula and five Hugo awards, Connie Willis is one of the most acclaimed and imaginative authors of our time.  Her startling and powerful works have redefined the boundaries of contemporary science fiction.  Here in one volume are twelve of her greatest stories, including double award-winner "Fire Watch," set in the universe of Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog, in which a time-traveling student learns one of history's hardest lessons.  In "A Letter from the Clearys," a routine message from distant friends shatters the fragile world of a beleaguered family.  In "The Sidon in the Mirror," a mutant with the unconscious urge to become other people finds himself becoming both killer and victim.  Disturbing, revealing, and provocative, this remarkable collection of short fiction brings together some of the best work of an incomparable writer whose ability to amaze, confound, and enlighten never fails. From the Paperback edition.
Views: 2 887

Heart-Shaped Box

Aging, self-absorbed rock star Judas Coyne has a thing for the macabre -- his collection includes sketches from infamous serial killer John Wayne Gacy, a trepanned skull from the 16th century, a used hangman's noose, Aleister Crowley's childhood chessboard, etc. -- so when his assistant tells him about a ghost for sale on an online auction site, he immediately puts in a bid and purchases it. The black, heart-shaped box that Coyne receives in the mail not only contains the suit of a dead man but also his vengeance-obsessed spirit. The ghost, it turns out, is the stepfather of a young groupie who committed suicide after the 54-year-old Coyne callously used her up and threw her away. Now, determined to kill Coyne and anyone who aids him, the merciless ghost of Craddock McDermott begins his assault on the rocker's sanity.
Views: 2 855

Red Sister

I was born for killing – the gods made me to ruin. At the Convent of Sweet Mercy young girls are raised to be killers. In a few the old bloods show, gifting talents rarely seen since the tribes beached their ships on Abeth. Sweet Mercy hones its novices’ skills to deadly effect: it takes ten years to educate a Red Sister in the ways of blade and fist. But even the mistresses of sword and shadow don’t truly understand what they have purchased when Nona Grey is brought to their halls as a bloodstained child of eight, falsely accused of murder: guilty of worse. Stolen from the shadow of the noose, Nona is sought by powerful enemies, and for good reason. Despite the security and isolation of the convent her secret and violent past will find her out. Beneath a dying sun that shines upon a crumbling empire, Nona Grey must come to terms with her demons and learn to become a deadly assassin if she is to survive…
Views: 2 755

Sphere

A group of American scientists are rushed to a huge vessel that has been discovered resting on the ocean floor in the middle of the South Pacific. What they find defines their imaginations and mocks their attempts at logical explanation. It is a spaceship of phenomenal dimensions, apparently, undamaged by its fall from the sky. And, most startling, it appears to be at least three hundred years old. . . . "The suspense is real. " THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW "A page-turner. . . Chichton's writing is cinematic, with powerful visual images and nonstop action. This book should come with hot buttered popcorn. " NEWSWEEK
Views: 2 744

Weekends Required

Claire Walters has worked for Jason Danvers as his assistant for three years, but he’s never appreciated her as a woman—until the day she jumps out of a cake at his friend’s bachelor party. … To support her ailing mother, Claire is forced to work a second job at a party-planning company. But when her handsome boss ends up with a front-row seat to the action, she’s mortified—and he’s intrigued. With Danvers International in the middle of an important merger, Jason asks Claire to accompany him on weekend business trips—and suddenly all her fantasies are coming true. Her outspoken best friend thinks that getting a little “executive attention” will solve everything. But Claire sees more in Jason than just sex. Jason is determined to know how the beautiful, sexy woman in the cake could also be his mousy assistant. The more time they spend together, the more he realizes how much fun it can be to mix business with pleasure. And how much he wants to offer her a happily ever after of her own….
Views: 2 742

North and South

The first volume of John Jakes’s acclaimed and sweeping saga about a friendship threatened by the divisions of the Civil War In the years leading up to the Civil War, one enduring friendship embodies the tensions of a nation. Orry Main from South Carolina and George Hazard from Pennsylvania forge a lasting bond while training at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Together they fight in the Mexican-American War, but their closeness is tested as their regional politics diverge. As the first rounds are fired at Fort Sumter, Orry and George find themselves on different sides of the coming struggle. In John Jakes’s unmatched style, North and South launches a trilogy that captures the fierce passions of a country at the precipice of disaster. This ebook features an illustrated biography of John Jakes including rare images from the author’s personal collection.
Views: 2 701

Altered Carbon

In the twenty-fifth century, humankind has spread throughout the galaxy, monitored by the watchful eye of the U.N. While divisions in race, religion, and class still exist, advances in technology have redefined life itself. Now, assuming one can afford the expensive procedure, a person’s consciousness can be stored in a cortical stack at the base of the brain and easily downloaded into a new body (or “sleeve”) making death nothing more than a minor blip on a screen. Ex-U.N. envoy Takeshi Kovacs has been killed before, but his last death was particularly painful. Dispatched one hundred eighty light-years from home, re-sleeved into a body in Bay City (formerly San Francisco, now with a rusted, dilapidated Golden Gate Bridge), Kovacs is thrown into the dark heart of a shady, far-reaching conspiracy that is vicious even by the standards of a society that treats “existence” as something that can be bought and sold. For Kovacs, the shell that blew a hole in his chest was only the beginning. . . . From the Trade Paperback edition.
Views: 2 692

The Ask and the Answer

Part two of the literary sci-fi thriller follows a boy and a girl who are caught in a warring town where thoughts can be heard — and secrets are never safe. Reaching the end of their flight in THE KNIFE OF NEVER LETTING GO, Todd and Viola did not find healing and hope in Haven. They found instead their worst enemy, Mayor Prentiss, waiting to welcome them to New Prentisstown. There they are forced into separate lives: Todd to prison, and Viola to a house of healing where her wounds are treated. Soon Viola is swept into the ruthless activities of the Answer, while Todd faces impossible choices when forced to join the mayor’s oppressive new regime. In alternating narratives the two struggle to reconcile their own dubious actions with their deepest beliefs. Torn by confusion and compromise, suspicion and betrayal, can their trust in each other possibly survive?
Views: 2 685

Prey

In the Nevada desert, an experiment has gone horribly wrong. A cloud of nanoparticles -- micro-robots -- has escaped from the laboratory. This cloud is self-sustaining and self-reproducing. It is intelligent and learns from experience. For all practical purposes, it is alive. It has been programmed as a predator. It is evolving swiftly, becoming more deadly with each passing hour. Every attempt to destroy it has failed. And we are the prey.
Views: 2 630

Her Smoke Rose Up Forever (S.F. MASTERWORKS)

For a decade Alice Sheldon produced an extraordinary body of work under the pseudonym James Tiptree Jr, until her identity was exposed in 1977. Her Smoke Rose Up Forever presents the finest of these stories and contains the Nebula Award-winning ‘Love Is the Plan, the Plan Is Death’, Hugo Award-winning novella ‘The Girl Who Was Plugged In’, ‘Houston, Houston, Do You Read?’ – winner of both the Hugo and Nebula – and of course the story for which she is best known: ‘The Women Men Don’t See’.
Views: 2 560

The Postman

This is the story of a lie that became the most powerful kind of truth. A timeless novel as urgently compelling as War Day or Alas, Babylon, David Brin's The Postman is the dramatically moving saga of a man who rekindled the spirit of America through the power of a dream, from a modern master of science fiction. He was a survivor--a wanderer who traded tales for food and shelter in the dark and savage aftermath of a devastating war. Fate touches him one chill winter's day when he borrows the jacket of a long-dead postal worker to protect himself from the cold. The old, worn uniform still has power as a symbol of hope, and with it he begins to weave his greatest tale, of a nation on the road to recovery.
Views: 2 557