The Winds of Marble Arch – Connie Willis

A collection of stories from Connie Willis. I’ve been reading Connie Willis for over twenty years now, in a somewhat haphazard way. I’ve come away with an impression of low-key, well-written work that doesn’t particularly stand out. When I saw this collection, I took the opportunity to add Willis to my ebook collection and revisit some old stories. I’m sorry to say that the passage of time hasn’t given me cause to change my opinion.…

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The Black Cauldron – Lloyd Alexander

Chronicles of Prydain #2 Taran, Assistant Pig-Keeper, has returned to his duties after a brief spell of excitement. But it’s not all pig-washing when a series of curious character’s turn up at Caer Dallben to plan a secret mission to darkest Annuvin. This second book in the Chronicles of Prydain follows closely on the trail of its predecessor, The Book of Three. The writing is light, humorous, and instructive, in the sense that there are…

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The Book of Three – Lloyd Alexander

Chronicles of Prydain #1 Taran’s been promoted – to Assistant Pig Keeper. It’s not quite the heroic task he envisioned, even if Hen Wen is an oracular pig. But even assistant pig keeping turns out to be harder than expected, when Hen Wen escapes, Taran has a run-in with the Horned King, and things get even worse. One of the classic stories of children’s fantasy. I read it when I was young, and at WorldCon,…

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The Space Merchants – Frederik Pohl, C. M. Kornbluth

Space Merchants #1 Advertising runs the world, and Mitch Courtney is a Star Class Copysmith. Sure, he faces trouble with his contract wife, who has Conservationist sympathies, and refuses to move in with him, but Mitch is a man on his way up. When he’s assigned the task of selling hot, inhospitable Venus as a settlers’ paradise, things start to go wrong, and he finds out just what it’s like to be on the outside…

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Scion’s Lady – Rebecca Bradley

Gil #2 Tigrallef, unwilling saviour of the nation of Gil, has settled into a humdrum life as Gil’s memorian and archivist. His main excitement is in observing the many new cults that have sprung up since he destroyed Gil’s protective goddess. He accedes unhappily to marriage, only to find that the goddess isn’t gone at all, and that she has a very personal interest in him. There are always Ancients. That is, discovering the secrets…

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Lady in Gil – Rebecca Bradley

Gil #1 Tigrallef, happily reclusive scholar and memorian becomes a lot less happy when called to stand in for his more … physical brother as the land of Gil’s official Hero. Woefully unprepared, he’s sent off to Gil to track down a divinely powerful statuette and oust the vile Sherank interlopers. Just the latest in a long line of heroically honorable failures, he decides on discretion as the better part of valor this time around.…

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