Characters: Kvothe from The Name of the Wind

Among fantasy titans, Patrick Rothfuss shocked just about everyone by carving a place for himself with his book, The Name of the Wind. It centered on Kvothe, a character of a hundred different stories and the truth behind those stories. Then Rothfuss did it again with The Wise Man’s Fear, the second book to feature […]

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 Squidbillies. (I’d lump Superjail in there, but it’s not for the squeamish and satire works best if anyone with a brain can tune in.) We’ve become a culture that mostly has […]

Characters: Malcolm Reynolds of Firefly

Let’s talk about Firefly. Remember Firefly everyone? That show we all love? The one FOX cancelled? The one about the scrappy band of space cowboys by the guy who did The Avengers? Hell yeah. Let’s talk about Firefly. Specifically, let’s talk about Malcolm “Mal” Reynolds. Captain of the Serenity, smuggler, browncoat, excellent shot, witty; all […]

Characters: Clare of Claymore

Claymore is one of the more interesting anime I’ve seen in a while. It’s a pretty standard story. Monsters, known as yoma, feed on humans, and the only ones who can defeat them are swords for hire known as Claymores. All Claymores are women, and they serve an organization known as the Organization. (Very creative.) […]

Pretty Soldiers: Minako Aino

Minako Aino revels in frivolity. She loves pop music and cake, she trades shoujo manga with her friends, she wants to be an idol singer someday. She loves fame and glamour and if she existed today, you can bet she’d be updating the official Sailor Venus twitter account every hour because “omg today’s monster had […]

Characters: Mat Cauthon from Wheel of Time

For better or worse, Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series is filled with characters. Encyclopedia WoT has the total at around 2200. Most, thankfully, are minor. Some have small roles. Others are given a single POV section and never heard from again. Still more play significant parts in the greater schemes of individual countries and […]

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 the mainstay of Baen Books. True, Ace has Starship Troopers and DAW has Armor and St. Martin’s Griffin has The Forever War, but Baen has long since championed […]

Pretty Soldiers: Makoto Kino

The strength of characterization in Sailor Moon is, in my opinion, what has made it such an enduring series. When we were children, we chose our favorite and used her to represent who we were and who we hoped to be. And there was such a diversity of choice—they’re tomboys, wannabe idols, obsessed with video […]

The Pros and Cons of Comicon

It is the day before the first day of spring. As I sit in my office chair, working at my computer, the giant snow thrower passes by and deposits a massive blast of snow onto my window making me jerk around at the sound it makes. So much for springtime in Fargo. I contemplate having […]

Characters: Ben Reich from The Demolished Man

The Demolished Man is a classic of SF. The story of Lincoln Powell’s faceoff with Ben Reich is worthy of the first Hugo, and is still an entertaining read today. Beyond the well imagined world of Espers, The Demolished Man’s strength lies in its two principal characters. Powell is the stalwart defender of the innocent, […]