This is Sci-Fi, Issue 18: 2084, A Red Peace and a Re-Release

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This is Sci-Fi, Issue 17  is a sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think of to list. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

This is Sci-Fi’s Weekly Quote:

“Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.”
― Douglas AdamsThe Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

Science Fiction Movies

Close Encounters of the Third Kind is being re-released this week.


Science Fiction Books

Featured New Release

Book cover for A Red Peace

A Red Peace – Starfire #1 – Spencer Ellsworth – August 22nd, 2017

A Red Peace, first in Spencer Ellsworth’s Starfire trilogy, is an action-packed space opera in a universe where the oppressed half-Jorian crosses have risen up to supplant humanity and dominate the galaxy.

Half-breed human star navigator Jaqi, working the edges of human-settled space on contract to whoever will hire her, stumbles into possession of an artifact that the leader of the Resistance wants desperately enough to send his personal guard after. An interstellar empire and the fate of the remnant of humanity hang in the balance.

Spencer Ellsworth has written a classic space opera, with space battles between giant bugs, sun-sized spiders, planets of cyborgs and a heroine with enough grit to bring down the galaxy’s newest warlord.


Also recently released: Reincarnation Blues by Michael Poore, Thirteen Rising (Zodiac #4) by Romina Russell, The Keep of Ages by Caragh M. O’Brien

Science Fiction Giveaways on Goodreads:

Book cover for Curiouser and Curiouser Book cover for Tinker Book cover for The Solid-State Shuffle






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Sci-Fi Poll Time

What Sci-Fi Show Has the Most Quotable Lines

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The winner of last issue’s poll (Who was the better Star Trek reboot character) was:

Scotty (66%)

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Sci-Fi Trivia Zone

5 Sci-Fi Movies Mystery Science Theater 3000 Tore to Shreds (Deservedly)



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Sci-Fi on the Web

The Movie Sleuth has an article about the sci-fi thriller 1′ has some info on the 35th anniversary Blu-Ray release of ‘Blade Runner’

If you’re worried about Godzilla vs. King Kong cheaping out on the ending with an ‘everyone wins’ end, try this article from Maybe it will put your mind at ease.

Want some cute (and interesting) animal science? Check out this article on otters.

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Coolthulhu Reads Alert! Coolthulhu Reads Alert!

The science fiction book for September is:

2084 by Mason Engel

Book cover for 2084

We’re doing something different this month, folks. Our discussions for 2084 will be held during the whole month of September! 

The Kindle version of 2084 is free on Amazon  right now, so go ahead and grab it, then join us on the Coolthulhu Reads forums.



This is Sci-Fi, Issue 15: Valerian, Ghosts, and Robots

The banner for the bi-weekly This is Sci-Fi post on Sci-Fi & Scary

This is Sci-Fi, Issue 15  is a sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think of to list. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

This is Sci-Fi’s Quote of the Week:

“The ability to speak does not make you intelligent.”
― George Lucas

Science Fiction Movies


Science Fiction Movies Opening This Week (July 21st):

Movie cover for Valerian

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets Synopsis: A dark force threatens Alpha, a vast metropolis and home to  species from a thousand planets. Special operatives Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.

Starring: Dane DeHaanCara DelevingneClive Owen

Watch the official trailer here.




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Science Fiction Movies In Theatres Now:

War for the Planet of the Apes

Spiderman: Homecoming

Wonder Woman (Review)

Transformers: The Last Night

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Science Fiction Books

3 New Releases

Book cover for What Goes Up

What Goes Up – Katie Kennedy – July 18th, 2017

Action-packed and wildly funny, this near-future sci-fi features three teens on an inter-dimensional mission to save the world.

Rosa and Eddie are among hundreds of teens applying to NASA’s mysterious Multi-World Agency. After rounds of crazy-competitive testing they are appointed to Team 3, along with an alternate, just in case Eddie screws up (as everyone expects he will). What they don’t expect is that aliens will arrive from another dimension, and look just like us. And no one could even imagine that Team 3 would be the only hope of saving our world from their Earth-destroying plans. The teens steal the spacecraft (it would be great if they knew how to fly it) and head to Earth2, where the aliens’ world and people are just like ours. With a few notable exceptions.

There, the teens will find more than their alternate selves: they’ll face existential questions and high-stakes adventure, with comedy that’s out of this world. – Goodreads

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N

Book cover for Ghosts Helldivers 2

Ghosts – Hell Divers II – Nicholas Sansbury Smith – July 18th, 2017

Ten years ago, Hell Diver Xavier “X” Rodriguez fell to Earth. Those he left behind went on without him aboard the airship he once called home.

Michael Everheart — the boy once known as Tin — has grown into a man and the commander of Hell Diver Raptor Team. While Michael dives to help keep the Hive in the air, Captain Leon Jordan rules with an iron fist at the helm of the ship. But unrest stirs under his strict leadership as a prophecy of hope sweeps the lower decks.

When a mysterious distress signal calls the Hell Divers to the surface, Michael and his loyal team begin to uncover long-buried truths and the secrets Captain Jordan will do anything to keep. They dive so humanity survives… but will they survive the ultimate betrayal?

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N

Book cover for Arabella and the Battle of Venus

Arabella and the Battle of Venus – Adventures of Arabella Ashby #2 – David Levine – July 18th, 2017

The thrilling adventures of Arabella Ashby continue in the second book in Hugo-winning author David D. Levine’s swashbuckling sci-fi, alt-history series!

The swashbuckling Arabella Ashby is back for brand new adventure in the ongoing story of her life among the stars.

Arabella’s wedding plans to marry Captain Singh of the Honorable Mars Trading Company are interrupted when her fiancé is captured by the French and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp on swampy Venus. Now, Arabella must find passage to an enemy-controlled planet in the middle of a war, bribe or fight her way past vicious guards, and rescue her Captain.

To do this she must enlist the help of the dashing privateer, Daniel Fox of the Touchstone and build her own clockwork navigational automaton in order to get to Venus before the dread French general, Joseph Fouché, the Executioner of Lyon.

Once on Venus, Arabella, Singh, and Fox soon discover that Napoleon has designed a secret weapon, one that could subjugate the entire galaxy if they can’t discover a way to stop Fouché, and the entire French army, from completing their emperor’s mandate.

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N

3 Sci-Fi Book Giveaways on Goodreads: (covers go to Goodreads pages)

Book cover for The Song of Orphans Book cover for The Han Agent Book cover for Your One and Only

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The Sci-FI Zone

Here we are at the end of the Best of Twilight Zone series. So what better way to wrap it up than with a few Twilight Zones that are not-so-good. I don’t mean extremely terrible, well a few are, but some I just find boring and/or nonsensical. They are in general order of the worst to the not-too-bad. Keep in mind, this is just my opinion so please don’t come after me with torches a pitchforks.

1. Black Leather Jackets – Season 5, Episode 18: This episode is just silly and a bit weird. A biker gang of aliens lands to invade Earth and destroy humanity. It’s kind of like Grease but without the singing and coherent plot.

2. The Mighty Casey – Season 1, Episode 35: This episode, about a baseball-playing robot struck out with me. Because I could see why the other teams were upset. It’s pretty much cheating.

3. Hocus Pocus Frisby – Season 3, Episode 30: Aliens abduct a man because they think he must be the smartest man in the world, especially with all of the tall tales he spins. Unfortunately, that’s all they are. Tales. Or, lies, as I prefer. This episode it’s just annoying and the main character looks like a fish.

4. The Dummy – Season 3, Episode 33: If there’s a ventriloquist doll in the story then it;s almost guaranteed I’m going to dislike it. Not just because they’re creepy (which they are) but also because they usually follow one or two specific formulas and it gets old. Fast.

5. Caesar and Me – Season 5, Episode 28: Another ventriloquist dummy. Go figure.

6. Uncle Simon – Season 5, Episode 8: This is such a ridiculous story that I don’t even know what to say about it. I think I’d rather be on my own, working, than put up with my psycho uncle and his freaking robot.

7. Person or Persons Unknown – Season 3, Episode 27 – An identity swapper that isn’t so much terrible as it is pretty dull.

8. Still Valley – Season 3, Episode 11 – Again, somewhat boring. I honestly can’t even give you a general idea as it lost my interest.

9. Mr. Dingle, the Strong – Season 2, Episode 19: One of the worst episodes that Burgess Meredith appear in. his performance is quite good but the plot is very weak.

10. I Shot an Arrow Into the Air – Season 1, Episode 15: i just do not like this one. They seem to be very bad at recon missions.



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Sci-Fi Poll Time!

Your Favorite Sci-Fi Robot

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Sci-Fi on the Web

In case you missed it: The BBC has announced the 13th Doctor for Doctor Who.

AlpacaReads reviews The Punch Escrow. offers up a Fan’s Perspective on George Romero following his death.

Here’s a write up of Void Star from The Verge

A review of ‘ancient’ science fiction – specifically, the Incubated Girl from Glitternight.

Variety reports Anne Hathaway will be starring in the science fiction thriller “O2”

Sci-Fi Addicts had an interesting article on Why the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Mediocre and We Love It Anyways

A review of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets from RollingStone



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Coolthulu Reads September:

Book: New York 2140

Author: Kim Stanley Robinson

Date: September 20th

Time: 8 PM EST



This is Sci-Fi #2: Carve the Mark and Martians Abroad!

The banner for the bi-weekly This is Sci-Fi post on Sci-Fi & Scary

This is Sci-Fi is a  sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think of to list. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Sci-Fi Movies

Movie Suggestion for the Week:

Movie post for Idiocracy

Since The Toupee from Outer Space is getting sworn in today, I felt there was really only one movie that I could suggest for this week.

Idiocracy is swiftly becoming a documentary instead of the comedy it was meant to be. Released in 2006, it stars Luke Wilson and Maya Rudolph. It’s funny, but frightening, and will definitely stick in your mind once you’ve watched it.

Synopsis: Private Joe Bauers, the definition of “average American”, is selected by the Pentagon to be the guinea pig for a top-secret hibernation program. Forgotten, he awakes five centuries in the future. He discovers a society so incredibly dumbed-down that he’s easily the most intelligent person alive.



Opening Next Week (Jan 27th)

Movie poster for Resident Evil The Final Chapter

Synopsis: Picking up immediately after the events in Resident Evil: Retribution, Alice (Milla Jovovich) is the only survivor of what was meant to be humanity’s final stand against the undead. Now, she must return to where the nightmare began – The Hive in Raccoon City, where the Umbrella Corporation is gathering its forces for a final strike against the only remaining survivors of the apocalypse.

Starring:  Ruby Rose, Milla Jovovich, Ali Larter

Rating: R

Watch the  Resident Evil: The Final Chapter trailer here.



Trailer to Watch:

The Discovery is due in theaters March 31st, 2017.  It stars Rooney Mara & Jesse Plemons. It’s a romance, so the chances of me watching it are about 1 in 350,000, but I hope at least some of you watch it and like it!

Featured Sci-Fi Art

scifi by Ericoscarj on DeviantArt

This is absolutely gorgeous in its own way. I’d love to have this blown up and on my wall. One of those landscapes you can study for quite a while without feeling bored, I think.

Science Fiction Books

(Covers go to Goodreads)

New Releases

Book cover for Martians Abroad

Martians Abroad Synopsis: Polly Newton has one single-minded dream, to be a starship pilot and travel the galaxy. Her mother, the director of the Mars Colony, derails Polly’s plans when she sends Polly and her genius twin brother, Charles, to Galileo Academy on Earth—the one planet Polly has no desire to visit. Ever.

Homesick and cut off from her desired future, Polly cannot seem to fit into the constraints of life on Earth, unlike Charles, who deftly maneuvers around people and sees through their behavior to their true motives. Strange, unexplained, dangerous coincidences centered on their high-profile classmates begin piling up. Charles may be right—there’s more going on than would appear, and the stakes are high. With the help of Charles, Polly is determined to find the truth, no matter the cost. – Goodreads


Book cover for Carve the Mark

Carve the Mark Synopsis: On a planet where violence and vengeance rule, in a galaxy where some are favored by fate, everyone develops a currentgift, a unique power meant to shape the future. While most benefit from their currentgifts, Akos and Cyra do not—their gifts make them vulnerable to others’ control. Can they reclaim their gifts, their fates, and their lives, and reset the balance of power in this world?

Cyra is the sister of the brutal tyrant who rules the Shotet people. Cyra’s currentgift gives her pain and power—something her brother exploits, using her to torture his enemies. But Cyra is much more than just a blade in her brother’s hand: she is resilient, quick on her feet, and smarter than he knows.

Akos is from the peace-loving nation of Thuvhe, and his loyalty to his family is limitless. Though protected by his unusual currentgift, once Akos and his brother are captured by enemy Shotet soldiers, Akos is desperate to get his brother out alive—no matter what the cost. When Akos is thrust into Cyra’s world, the enmity between their countries and families seems insurmountable. They must decide to help each other to survive—or to destroy one another.-Goodreads

Book cover for Empire Games

The year is 2020. It’s seventeen years since the Revolution overthrew the last king of the New British Empire, and the newly-reconstituted North American Commonwealth is developing rapidly, on course to defeat the French and bring democracy to a troubled world. But Miriam Burgeson, commissioner in charge of the shadowy Ministry of Intertemporal Research and Intelligence—the paratime espionage agency tasked with catalyzing the Commonwealth’s great leap forward–has a problem. For years, she’s warned everyone: “The Americans are coming.” Now their drones arrive in the middle of a succession crisis—the leader of the American Commonwealth is dying and the vultures are circling.

In another timeline, the U.S. has recruited Rita, Miriam’s estranged daughter, to spy across timelines and bring down any remaining world-walkers who might threaten national security. But her handlers are keeping information from her.

Two nuclear superpowers are set on a collision course. Two increasingly desperate paratime espionage agencies are fumbling around in the dark, trying to find a solution to the first contact problem that doesn’t result in a nuclear holocaust. And two women—a mother and her long-lost, adopted daughter—are about to find themselves on opposite sides of the confrontation.

New-To-You (and with a 3.75+ rating on Goodreads)

Book cover for Brown Girl in the Ring
Grand Central Publishing
Goodreads: 3.83
Book cover for Babel-17
Gregg Press
Goodreads: 3.79
Book cover for Voyage to Alpha Centauri
Ignatius Press
Goodreads: 4.13









Science Fiction on the Web

This is Sci-Fi #1: Monster Trucks & William R. Forstchen

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This is Sci-Fi

Sci-Fi Movies

Movie Suggestion for the Week:

Movie cover for The Day the Earth Stood Still

The 1951 version was selected for preservation in 1995 in the United States Film Registry as “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. It has many parallels to the Christian concept of Christ, so may be worth a good think. More importantly, though, it’s much better acted than that other version we shall not name.

Start your new year off wth a classic.





Opening Next Week (Jan 13):

Movie cover for Monster Trucks Synopsis: Looking for any way to get away from the life and town he was born into, Tripp (Lucas Till), a high school senior, builds a Monster Truck from bits and pieces of scrapped cars. After an accident at a nearby oil-drilling site displaces a strange and subterranean creature with a taste and a talent for speed, Tripp may have just found the key to getting out of town and a most unlikely friend.

Starring:  Lucas Till, Jane Levy, Thomas Lennon

Rating: PG

Watch the Monster Trucks trailer here.



Trailers to Watch:

Ickerman doesn’t have a specific release date yet, but it looks like they’re optimistic about it coming out in 2017. I liked the CGI that I saw, and the vision of the future. We shall see.

Featured Sci-Fi Art

Invasion by lavam00 on DeviantArt

Science Fiction Books

Covers go to Goodreads

New Releases

Book cover for The Final Day by William R. Forstchen

The highly-anticipated follow-up to William R. Forstchen’s New York Times bestsellers, One Second After and One Year After, The Final Day immerses readers once more in the story of our nation’s struggle to rebuild itself after an electromagnetic pulse wipes out all electricity and plunges the country into darkness, starvation, and terror.

After defeating the designs of the alleged federal government, John Matherson and his community have returned their attention to restoring the technologies and social order that existed prior to the EMP (Electro-Magnetic Pulse) attack. Then the government announces that it’s ceding large portions of the country to China and Mexico. The Constitution is no longer in effect, and what’s left of the U.S. Army has been deployed to suppress rebellion in the remaining states.

The man sent to confront John is General Bob Scales, John’s old commanding officer and closest friend from prewar days. Will General Scales follow orders, or might he be the crucial turning point in the quest for an America that is again united? As the dubious Federal government increasingly curtails liberty and trades away sovereignty, it might just get exactly what it fears: revolution. – Goodreads


Book cover for Defiant by Dave Barra

Peter Cochrane and his new wife, Karina, have been married less than a year. And although things have been quiet in relation to the old Empire during that time, they’re about to get a lot hotter. Peter and Karina have embarked on a diplomatic mission to Sandosa, an old ally of Pendax, the newest member of the Union.

But during their mission the government of Sandosa attacks Peter’s new command, Defiant, and tries to assassinate Karina and him. Peter responds the only way he can, with all the power at his disposal to protect both his wife and Defiant.

Then suddenly Defiant is called away to Skondar, where Peter’s old flame Dobrina Kierkopf and her new ship Impulse II have come under attack by the Butcher of Carinthia, Prince Arin. Though Defiant chases away the prince, it is not before some pretty devastating events have occurred.

And soon Peter finds himself racing toward the mysterious world of Altos, where he discovers an unpleasant truth about the Union’s allies, the Historians of Earth.

Each encounter with Arin and his allies leaves Peter and the Union Navy fleet reeling, even as they continue to pursue this elusive enemy. But all of this can only have one conclusion, a final confrontation in which Peter and Arin will battle over the future of humanity—Union or Empire.

New-To-You (and with a 3.75+ rating on Goodreads)

Book cover for Mutineer by Mike Shepherd
Goodreads: 3.85
Book cover for Earth Strike: Star Carrier by Ian Douglas
Harper Voyager
Goodreads: 3.75
Book cover for Valhalla by Ari Bach
Dreamspinner Press
Goodreads: 4.27

Sci-Fi on the Web

What’s Up in Sci-Fi: Inside Rama, Passengers

Welcome back to What’s Up in Sci-Fi. This eighth issue is a  sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think of to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Movie Tidbits

Coming Soon:

Passengers, starring Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt, is due to be released on December 21st. The movie is getting a fair amount of hype. It’s even going to be sent to the ISS so people can watch it in space. (Apparently this is a big deal. I do not see why.)

It looks interesting enough, and Lawrence and Pratt have delivered fantastically in the past, so I’m definitely curious to see this.

Watch the Passengers trailer here.




Trailers to Check Out:

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. It’s based on a comic book, looks fairly typical, and is due out in July of 2017. I highly recommend watching the trailer with your sound off, as the ‘music’ they’ve overlaid it with is mindbogglingly annoying.

Life. Starring Ryan Reynolds and Jake Gyllenhal, Life looks to be yet another example of humanity seeking to find a way to make itself out to be the hero, not the villain. Because, oooh, scary aliens. Maybe I’m just cynical, though.

Featured Vimeo Science Fiction Short

True Skin

This 6-minute video from H1 called “True Skin” is visually engaging, interesting, and overall very well done. Go check it out.

Featured Science Fiction Art: Inside Rama

Made by: James A. Ciomperlik. © Public Domain

This is a 3D rendering of the inside of the famous Rama spaceship in Rendezvous with Rama. I have to say, I think he nailed it. What about you?

Science Fiction Books

Interesting Looking New Releases:

Metro 2035: World War Three wiped out the humankind. The planet is empty now. Huge cities became dust and ashes. Railroads are being eaten by rust. Abandoned satellites hang lonely on the orbit. Radio is mute on all the frequencies.

The only survivors of the last war were those who made it into the gates of the Metro, the subway system of Moscow city. It’s there, hundreds of feet below the ground, in the vaults of what was constructed as the world’s largest air-raids shelter that people try to outlive the end of the days. It’s there that they created a new world for themselves.

The stations of Metro became city-states, and its citizens, torn apart by religions and ideologies are fighting for the now scarce commodities: air, water, and space. This tiny underground world can only remind humans of an immense world they once were the masters of.

It’s been twenty years past Doomsday, and yet the survivors refuse to give up. The most stubborn of them keep cherishing a dream: when the radiation level from nuclear bombings subsides, they will be able to return to the surface and have the life their parents once had.

But the most stubborn of the stubborn continues to search for other survivors in this huge emptiness that once was called Earth. His name is Artyom. He would give anything to lead his own people from the underground onto the surface.

And he will. | Buy on Amazon.

Culdesac – The war with no name rages on, setting the world on fire. Humanity faces extinction at the hands of the Colony, a race of intelligent ants seeking to overthrow the humans and establish a new order. To achieve this, the ants use their strange technology to transform the surface animals into highly evolved killing machines who rise up and murder their oppressors.
The bobcat Culdesac is among the fiercest warriors that the Colony’s experiment has produced. Driven by revenge, and notorious for his ability to hunt humans in the wild, Culdesac is the perfect leader of the Red Sphinx, an elite unit of feline assassins. With the humans in retreat, the Red Sphinx seizes control of the remote village of Milton. But holding the town soon becomes a bitter struggle of wills. While the humans threaten a massive counterattack, the townsfolk protect a dark secret that could tip the balance of the war. For the sadistic Culdesac, violence is the answer to everything. But this time, he’ll need more than his claws and his guns, for what he discovers in Milton will upend everything he believes, everything he fought for, and everything he left behind.
Buy on Amazon.



Ocean of Storms In the near future, political tensions between the United States and China are at an all-time high. Then a catastrophic explosion on the moon cleaves a vast gash in the lunar surface, and the massive electromagnetic pulse it unleashes obliterates Earth’s electrical infrastructure. To plumb the depths of the newly created lunar fissure and excavate the source of the power surge, the feuding nations are forced to cooperate on a high-risk mission to return mankind to the moon.
Now, a diverse, highly skilled ensemble of astronauts—and a pair of maverick archaeologists plucked from the Peruvian jungle—will brave conspiracy on Earth and disaster in space to make a shocking discovery. Buy on Amazon.

New-to-You (and with a 3.75+ rating on Goodreads)

Nick Cole
Goodreads: 3.86
HMH Books
Goodreads: 3.89
Henry Holt
Goodreads: 3.98


  • John Glenn, the first man to orbit the moon, died on December 8th, 2016. His orbiting of the earth was yet one more step in science fiction becoming real life.
  • Ursula Le Guin is getting the recognition she deserves in 2016, and in 2018 hopefully we’ll get to see the hour-long documentary “The Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin
  • Cards Against Humanity has partnered with science fiction writers to release a new Sci-Fi Card Pack. All proceeds go to Worldbuilders.
  • In a disturbing case of Sci-Fi to Real Life, it looks like China is implementing a social credit score. Dystopia! Dystopias everywhere!
  • Ozy has an interesting piece on the Father of Science Fiction (not Jules Verne or H.G. Wells), and how his quest for anonymity screwed his legacy over.
  • LA Review of Books makes some interesting claims about science fiction, including indicating that  “There are innumerable definitions, all of which flatly contradict each other”, but it’s article This is Science Fiction is well worth the read.
  • Have you seen any of these German science fiction films?
  • Hey, look, a science fiction writer from way back that wasn’t white! Jagadish Chandra Bose is someone you need to know about.
  • Tyson, the meat giant, is putting its money where it’s mouth is and seeking out new ways of getting protein into people via meatless meats. Definitely a step from sci-fi to real life?

What’s Up In Sci-Fi: Sci-Fi Ideas Shaping the Army, and Aliens

WhatsUpinSciFi - sci-fi ideas shaping the army

Welcome back to What’s Up in Sci-Fi #7. A sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think of to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Movies Tidbits

arrival Arrival wreleased on November 11th. It’s still doing great. Has an 8.4 rating on IMDB.

Synopsis: A linguist is recruited by the military to assist in translating alien communications.

But here’s the thing: If you go by the trailers and the IMDB synopsis, you’re may be disappointed by the movie. While it has great visuals, and there is a good deal of linguistics involved in it, this is not a movie that’s really about making first contact with aliens, nor does it have much action in it at all.

It’s a great movie, just don’t expect your typical sci-fi flick when you go in to see it.

My review.

Featured Vimeo Sci-Fi Short

Because of the owner’s permission settings, I can’t embed the video like I normally do.  So, here’s the link.
Iscariot by Kirill Proskura

Featured Sci-Fi Art

An artist’s rendering of shifting coronas around a black hole ©NASA / Public Domain

Sci-Fi Books

Interesting Looking New Releases


A Closed and Common Orbit: Lovelace was once merely a ship’s artificial intelligence. When she wakes up in a new body, following a total system shut-down and reboot, she has no memory of what came before. As Lovelace learns to negotiate the universe and discover who she is, she makes friends with Pepper, an excitable engineer, who’s determined to help her learn and grow.

Together, Pepper and Lovey will discover that no matter how vast space is, two people can fill it together.

The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet introduced readers to the incredible world of Rosemary Harper, a young woman with a restless soul and secrets to keep. When she joined the crew of the Wayfarer, an intergalactic ship, she got more than she bargained for – and learned to live with, and love, her rag-tag collection of crewmates.

A Closed and Common Orbit is the stand-alone sequel to Becky Chambers’ beloved debut novel The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet and is perfect for fans of Firefly, Joss Whedon, Mass Effect and Star Wars. – Goodreads


the-machine-society The Machine Society: Mike Brooks debut novel is an adventure story set in a dystopian future in which our taste for branding, consumerism and artificial reality is boundless. In /The Machine Society/, he weaves together psychological insight, philosophical reflection and spiritual inquiry to give us a novel that is both a deep satire on modern life and a rich metaphor for our longing to find inner peace. Dean Rogers lives in the Perimeter of New London, holding down a soul-destroying job, surrounded by people who have lost the will to communicate. He is afraid his debts will spiral out of control, resulting in him being cast out of the city, outside of the Security Wall. Meanwhile, in the Better Life Complex, New London s rich elite live in plastic luxury, unaware of the sinister secrets that underpin their world. /The Machine Society/ is an original and intelligent sci-fi thriller, and a heartfelt rally cry for the soul’s liberation.”-Goodreads




New-To-You (and with a 3.75+ rating on Goodreads)

Timeswept Productions Goodreads: 3.97
Timeswept Productions
Goodreads: 3.97
Ace Books
Goodreads: 3.93
Hypernova Publishing
Goodreads: 3.91




What’s Up in Sci-Fi: Max Steel, Obama, and Asgardia


Welcome back to What’s Up in Sci-Fi #5. A sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies, to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Movie Tidbits

In Theatres

max-steelMax Steel – The adventures of teenager Max McGrath and his alien companion, Steel, who must harness and combine their tremendous new powers to evolve into the turbo-charged superhero Max Steel.

Well, I can’t say I’m going to watch this. Ever. But, hey, for it’s intended age range, I’m sure it’s great!





Coming Soon

Nothing in the next week.

Featured Vimeo Short Science Fiction Film

VOYAGER – Indie Short Film from SUPAMONKS STUDIO on Vimeo.

I’m not sure how I feel about this. It made me feel all sorts of things, and totally didn’t end the way I thought it would. What do you guys/gals think?

Sci-Fi Art

Abeyance by Julian-Faylona on DeviantArt

Sci-Fi Books

Small Press Featurettes:

These books may not be brand new releases, but they’re probably brand new to you (and they’ve got at least 3.75 rating on Goodreads)!

Note: Sci-Fi & Scary is not affiliated with any of these small presses. We just like giving lesser known horror books a chance to shine.

Phase 5 PublishingGoodreads: 4.86
Phase 5 Publishing
Goodreads: 4.86
ChiZine Publications Goodreads: 3.78
ChiZine Publications
Goodreads: 3.78
Night Shade BooksGoodreads: 3.78
Night Shade Books
Goodreads: 3.78
Apex Book Company Goodreads: 3.80
Apex Book Company
Goodreads: 3.80


Unfortunately, I’ve nothing to report for the New York Times and USA Today Best Selling Lists, but…
Amazon’s Kindle Science Fiction Best Selling List is topped by:
the-atlantis-gene the-man-in-high-castlethe-einstein-prophecy


WIRED presents a list of President Obama’s favorite science fiction movies / television shows.

Want to join the first Space Nation? Asgardia is accepting applicants.

Den of Geek has Charlie Booker talking about bringing Black Mirror to Netflix. It also makes the claim that science fiction can’t survive anymore in an age where everything is on the cusp of becoming reality. So… yeah.

Techcrunch has a very interesting piece on the role of science fiction in entrepreneurship. If you can get past the part where the guy calls science fiction “crap, serialized crap, and hard science fiction”, you might find something worth reading.

Mashable has a video on how the chestburster scene in Alien changed science fiction forever.

and, finally:

James Conan writes about Writing about Oppressed/Marginalized People in SF&F.  Its worth the read.


What’s Up in Sci-Fi: Apprentice in Death to Babel Fish


Welcome back to What’s Up in Sci-Fi #4. A sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies, to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Movie and Television Tidbits

New in Theatres / Out Now

Technically, Suicide Squad should go here, but…that’s not science fiction! (Or is it?)

Coming Soon

Zip, Zilch, Zero until November.

Sci-Fi Books

NY Times Best Sellers – Combined Fiction – (1-20):


It’s already dropped to number 6 on the list, but J.D. Robb’s Apprentice in Death (available on Amazon) is still representing science fiction on the NY Times Best Sellers list and USA Today’s Best Sellers List!







Amazon’s Kindle Science Fiction Best Selling List is topped by:

Science Fiction –> Alternate History
Science Fiction –>Exploration
Science Fiction –> Action/Adventure

Sci-Fi to Real Life

The universal translator. If you’re familiar with Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, then you know about the Babel Fish. This little fish, once inserted into your ear (eugh!) instantly translated all languages that you were in the immediate vicinity of.  Well, this definitely isn’t that, but it’s a step towards the Babel.

Rob Verger, writing for BGR, brings us news of this potential new development. Both people speaking would wear a small device in their ears, and translations would be made via a smart-phone app. Clunky it is, and real it might not be (there’s a little doubt), but the fact is – we’re approaching the point (if not already there) where it could be a reality.

There’s a video if you’re curious.


  • Arizona State University spearheaded an effort to compile a work of climate change fiction. This anthology “Everything Change” is FREE to download, read, and share today. (Yes, I’ve downloaded it myself.)

Everything Change features twelve stories from our 2016 Climate Fiction Short Story Contest along with along with a foreword by science fiction legend and contest judge Kim Stanley Robinson and an interview with renowned climate fiction author Paolo Bacigalupi.- ClimateImagination.Asu.Edu





What’s Up in Sci-Fi: Dragon Con & More


Welcome back to What’s Up in Sci-Fi . A sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies, to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what’s happening, but it should whet your appetite!

Movie & Television Tidbits

New In Theaters:

MorganMorgan – but I’ve addressed that in this post so I won’t be talking about it again.

So far no one I’ve talked to has been excited about this movie.




Coming Soon

Releasing September 3rd:

Virtual Revolution (Dragon Con, Central Florida Film Festival). It’s already made its rounds at a few ‘cons and film festivals. Hopefully it’ll actually, you know, get a regular release at some point. It looks extremely interesting.

Virtual RevolutionPlot Summary (IMDB) Paris 2047. Most of the population spend all their time online, connected into virtual worlds, and don’t care anymore about reality. A shadow agent, Nash, working for one of the multinational companies behind these virtual worlds, is tracking down terrorists who threaten the system…

In a world where most of the population spend their time online, inside virtual worlds, Nash is a hybrid. Half of the time online, the rest of the time, in the real world, he is a private investigator/killer, hired to track down and eliminate the terrorists who threaten the system and who killed his girlfriend. Torn between the past and the future, between virtual and real, Nash ends up having to take some decisions that will impact his life, but also the society he lives in.




The Telegraph has an interesting article on the upcoming release of the television adaptation of Michael Crichton’s Westworld. I’m excited about this because it’s got Anthony Hopkins in it, and there’s not been much he’s been in that I haven’t liked.  Click here to go to the article.


Science Fiction Books

NY Times Best Sellers – Hardcover Fiction – (1-20):

Dark MatterDark Matter by Blake Crouch:“Are you happy with your life?” Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious. Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits. Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.”

In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable–something impossible.

Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe.” – Goodreads Synopsis

USA Today Best Sellers (1-2o): None for this week!

The Verge has a great list of 24 September release science fiction and fantasy books. See it here.

Sci-Fi to Real Life

Stephen Baxter talks his novel Proxima, the discovery of exoplanets, and the transition of science fiction to science fact in his article “What was recently science fiction is now science“.


  • Dragon Con (Atlanta, Georgia)- Labor Day weekend!  Dragon Con bills itself as the “largest multi-media, popular culture convention focusing on science fiction & fantasy, gaming, comics, literature, art, music and film in the universe.”

Coolthulhu sulks because he can’t go.

  • The Hugo Awards were August 20th.
    • Best Novel: The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
    • Best Novella: Binti by Nnedi Okorafor
    • Best Short Story: Cat Pictures Please by Naomi Kritzer

Coolthulhu gets upset when there is talk of puppies in science fiction, because it never seems to be about actual

  • Adrian Tchaikovsky won the Arthur C. Clarke award for science fiction. See more from the BBC article here.

What’s Up In Sci-Fi: 8/19/2016


Welcome to our first run of What’s Up in Sci-Fi this week. A sampling of science fiction news across the mediums. From movies, to books, to real life, and any bits in between that I can think to list. I have no doubt the format will change as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. This is by no means a comprehensive list of what has happened this week, but it should whet your appetite!

Movie Tidbits

In Theatres:

Star Trek Beyond is pretty much the only major science fiction movie in most theatres right now. It looks like the only offering for sci-fi fans clear through the end of September, too.

Coolthulhu is sad.

Coming Soon:

The Verge is telling us (and I have to agree) to look out for Arrival, a Sci-Fi/Drama/Mystery that’s due to be released November 11th. Having watched the trailer , I have to say I’m definitely looking forward to it. I really want a movie that breaks the typical alien invasion mould!

It stars Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, and Forest Whitaker. I’ve liked Whitaker in almost everything I’ve seen him in, so I’m looking forward to seeing him on the big screen again.

Science Fiction Books 

NY Times Best Sellers: None for this week!

USA Today Best Sellers (1-2o): None for this week!

The Washington Science Fiction Association released their 2016 Finalists for WSFA Small Press Award for Short Fiction

“The award honors the efforts of small press publishers in providing a critical venue for short fiction in the area of speculative fiction. The award showcases the best original short fiction published by small presses in the previous year (2015).” – WSFA



Sci-Fi to Real Life

Used under CC 3.0
Creator /Deviant Artist: Nokola

According to this Washington Post article, putting a computer in your brain is no longer science fiction. The guys who are doing this (led by Bryan Johnson at Kernel )are doing it to try to fix brains after things like Alzheimers, strokes, etc,. So, I definitely applaud them for that, but anyone can see that should they manage to actually make this work – it’s going to be used and abused. Humans are funny like that. So many of us are driven by the urge to stay young, never die, have the best toys, etc. So, basically, what I’m saying is..

Prepare to be assimilated!

Notables on Famous People in Sci-Fi:

Hugo Gernsback, often called “The Father of Science Fiction”, was born August 16th, 1884. He died August 19th, 1967, at the age of 83.  Obvious Fact: He’s the dude the Hugos are named after!