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Paul Cook

Science Anomalies: Books to Think About for Science Fiction Readers

The theory is still a theory, but it suggests that life may have started very early on the earth (and now possibly on Mars because it, too, had ancient volcanoes), and it says that life is constantly being created way down deep in the earth. Or on any planet, moon, or body with an active volcanic core.

The Tom Swift Jr. Series

The Tom Swift Jr. books had great, evocative covers, quite pulp-like, and were quick reads.

When Science Fiction is Not Science Fiction

s\Some writers who might have started off in science fiction soon reveal their true selves when they start publishing what they really want to write about.

The Outsider: A New Science Fiction Award

We all know that “mainstream” writers have, for years, been writing borderline science fiction stories and novels, using all kinds of tropes and conceits that any reader of science fiction would recognize as belonging to hard-core science fiction.

The Winston Science Fiction Series

Paul Cook looks back at an early science fiction influence - the Winston Science Fiction Series.

Sexual Harassment at Science Conventions: Who Let the Dogs Out?

This is partially in response to K. Ceres Wright’s recent blog entry, “Having a Sexual Harassment Policy is not Enough”, but from an entirely...

First Contact: First Interests in Science Fiction

Recently a thread passed around on Facebook asked various writers what books mattered to them most when they were young, starting out with an...

Book Review: Lord of the Trees and The Mad Goblin by...

Lord of the Trees by Philip José Farmer Titan Books - Reprint 2012 ISBN-13: 978-1781162934 (Trade paperback) The Mad Goblin by Philip José Farmer Titan Books - Reprint...

Three Doc Savage Movies

Rumor has it that Shane Black is writing a script for a Doc Savage movie that may come out in 2015. It has a...

Our Ansible is Missing – Intellectual Property Theft in Science Fiction

In 1985, Orson Scott Card published Ender’s Game, a book that relied heavily on the use of a faster-than-light communication system called the Ansible....

Great Science Fiction Artists – John Schoenherr

When I was young I purchased most books and magazines in the science fiction field based on their covers. Nowadays that still applies, though...

Future Shock – Part I

When anatomically modern humans developed consciousness 50,000 years ago (or whenever), it’s because they started developing a sense of their place in the world...

Book Review: The Man-Kzin Wars – 25th Anniversary Edition – Created...

The Man-Kzin Wars - 25th Anniversary Edition - Created by Larry Niven Baen Books - 2013 ISBN-13: 978-1451639001 (Trade paperback) This is a reissue of the very...

Movie Review – Man of Steel

By now you have undoubtedly seen Man of Steel and I don’t doubt that you have some pretty visceral feelings toward the movie, not...

Great Science Fiction Artists – James Bama

James Bama single-handedly introduced the entire world to Doc Savage (he and his editors at Bantam Books and art director Len Leone). Doc Savage,...

Science Fiction and UFOs

I remember when I joined the Science Fiction Book Club back in 1963, one of the selections was Donald Keyhoe’s bestseller UFOs Are Real....

Great Science Fiction Artists – Jerome Podwil

What makes science fiction (and fantasy) so enthralling to readers is that not only can their authors tell extraordinary stories, the stories themselves can...

Everything I Know, I Learned from Edgar Allan Poe

Everything I know about writing science fiction, reading it, and understanding it, I learned from Edgar Allan Poe, specifically his one story, “The Fall...

Why I Don’t Like My Heroes

When I first started out as a published writer of science fiction in 1978 and sold my first novel in 1979, I started going...

The Alternate History Masterpiece You’ve Never Read

Satire is no longer being written in America. It’s still on television via Saturday Night Live, South Park, and the great, unsung animation series...

The (Ongoing) Death and Transfiguration of Science Fiction Publishing

Lazy Literary Agents in Self-Publishing Money Grab Via Argo Navis Most of you who are reading these blogs here at Amazing Stories are probably well...

Book Review: The Teleportation Accident by Ned Beauman

The Teleportation Accident - Ned Beauman Bloomsbury USA 2013 ISBN-13: 978-1620400227 (Hardcover) I buy books, especially novels, based on whether or not the story might interest me....

Book Review: Hope Reborn by S.M. Stirling and David Drake

Hope Reborn by S.M Stirling and David Drake Baen Books 2013 978-1-4516-3877-6 (Trade paperback) Military science fiction is a subgenre of science fiction that has long been...

Sense of Wonder #2 – From the Movies

Earlier I wrote about what Damon Knight characterized as “a sense of wonder” that emerges at times in a science fiction story, or as...

What Does the Music of the Future Sound Like?

When I was a kid, I saw a cheezy science fiction B movie wherein someone was playing an instrument that looked like a small...

Book Review: Bowl of Heaven by Gregory Benford and Larry Niven

Bowl of Heaven - Gregory Benford and Larry Niven Tor - 2012 978-0765328410 (Hardbound) This is the first collaboration between two of our major writers, Gregory Benford...

Is Ender’s Game Really Any Fun to Read?

Troll the internet for “the greatest science fiction novels of all time” and Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game will be at the top of...

Sense of Wonder #1

We are drawn to science fiction and fantasy because of what Damon Knight called its “sense of wonder”. This is a hard term to...

Book Review: The Wind Whales of Ishmael – Philip José Farmer

I have two purposes for this review. One is to call your attention to a novel that older readers have probably already read, The...

Amazing Stories from Mexico – Book Review: Three Messages and a...

Three Messages and a Warning - Contemporary Mexican Short Stories of the Fantastic - edited by Eduardo Jimenez Mayo and Chris N. Brown Small Beer...