by Damian Duffy (Adapter), Octavia E. Butler (Author), John Jennings (Illustrator)
Harry N. Abrams
Octavia E. Butler’s bestselling literary science-fiction masterpiece, Kindred, now in graphic novel format.
More than 35 years after its release, Kindred continues to draw in new readers with its deep exploration of the violence and loss of humanity caused by slavery in the United States, and its complex and lasting impact on the present day. Adapted by celebrated academics and comics artists Damian Duffy and John Jennings, this graphic novel powerfully renders Butler’s mysterious and moving story, which spans racial and gender divides in the antebellum South through the 20th century.
Butler’s most celebrated, critically acclaimed work tells the story of Dana, a young black woman who is suddenly and inexplicably transported from her home in 1970s California to the pre–Civil War South. As she time-travels between worlds, one in which she is a free woman and one where she is part of her own complicated familial history on a southern plantation, she becomes frighteningly entangled in the lives of Rufus, a conflicted white slaveholder and one of Dana’s own ancestors, and the many people who are enslaved by him.
Held up as an essential work in feminist, science-fiction, and fantasy genres, and a cornerstone of the Afrofuturism movement, there are over 500,000 copies of Kindred in print. The intersectionality of race, history, and the treatment of women addressed within the original work remain critical topics in contemporary dialogue, both in the classroom and in the public sphere.
Frightening, compelling, and richly imagined, Kindred offers an unflinching look at our complicated social history, transformed by the graphic novel format into a visually stunning work for a new generation of readers.
Keith Publications LLC,
September 26, 2013,
The School of Ministry: The Windgate by Braxton A. Cosby
TO CHOOSE, IS FATE!
But there is one catch: he must agree to join them in their quest to eradicate evil and protect the weak. Ziv learns that he is a “Conduit,” which allow him to cross over into the spirit world and transcend time itself. When he is partnered with two other young men who have similar gifts, the unlikely trio is trained in the mastery of weapons and the art of Shouting, during treacherous challenges of the tortuous Quad in preparation for their mission: to secure the Windgate. An untimely love triangle clouds Ziv’s judgment, forcing him to choose between the love of his life and the new female interest Evan. Entrenched in a quest of identity, love, and will, he eventually comes face to face with pure evil itself-Akabod, the spiritual prodigal son to the School of Ministry and a master of talents.
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform,
January 18, 2014,
Evan’s Heart: A Windgate Novella (School of Ministry Novellas) (Volume 1) by Braxton A. Cosby
The heart never lies! The only words that bring comfort to a confused mind. Partaking in the experience of the Quad from the safety of the observation room used to be the only thing Evan needed to worry about, other than supervising the Recruits in the field. Secretly, she desires more; driven by her thrill-seeking hidden side.
Her wish is finally granted when Maxwell and Mr. C. inform her that she must choose to support Ziv, Francis or Jaythan during one of the Quad phases. Ignorant to what exactly that entails, Evan is confounded by the question, knowing full well that it could very well end up in her death. Now, Evan is beginning to understand that life and the outcomes of your decisions is less of a game than she accounted for. When she finally makes the choice, she finds herself submerged — literally — in a desperate fight for her life, as well as wrestling with this reality: she is torn by her growing feelings for two of the new young prodigies.
Follow the perspective of Evan (Miss Evans) as she retells the tank scene from the Quad in The Windgate: Book 1 of The School of Ministry Series and gain insight into other characters from the story such as Maxwell, Francis and the intuitively gifted Ezra.
What happens when two great black women fiction writers get together to talk about race in young adult literature? That’s exactly what happens in the conversation below, where Zetta Elliott, a black feminist writer of poetry, plays, essays, novels, and stories for children, and award-winning Haitian-American speculative fiction writer Ibi Aanu Zoboi decided to discuss current young adult sci-fi.
Black Girls Hunger for Heroes, Too: A Black Feminist Conversation on Fantasy Fiction for Teens
For the interview post by Zetta Elliott on December 17, 2013 – 3:19pm, click here.
Black feminists have a range of opinions (just ask one about Beyonce), and so it’s always invigorating to share ideas on the topics that matter most to me. Bitch Magazine‘s blog recently published a conversation I had with writer Ibi Zoboi about race and representation in The Hunger Games and YA speculative fiction. Our 45-minute talk amounted to over 5000 words and we had to reduce that to under 2000 words for the blog. We’ve decided to post the rest of our discussion here, and the full podcast will be available on the Bitch Magazine website in 2014.
Black Girls Hunger for Heroes, 2
December 18, 2013
For the interview post by Zetta Elliott, click here.
The book selections from the December 2013 / January 2014 Ebony magazine:
Koehler Books, 10/1/2013
Welcome to Dubai (The Traveler) by Omar Tyree
When American Gary Stevens decides to explore the immaculate tourism haven of Dubai in the Middle East, he finds much more than he bargained for. Plans for a peaceful and harmless visit to the exotic land of seven-star hotels, international culture, food and shopping, quickly change when Gary attracts the attention of a beautiful, rebellious and enticing Muslim woman. Gary stumbles into a violent labor revolt triggered by the death of a poor immigrant construction worker, who falls from one of Dubai’s hundreds of fast-developing buildings. The exploitation of thousands of disposable immigrant laborers emboldens an Egyptian revolutionary to seek vengeance for the greed and inhumane practices of Dubai’s business elite Arab Emirates.
Meanwhile, the outspoken wife of Dubai’s youngest and most successful business leaders inspires an insurgence of young Muslim women—they seek empowerment, education and the freedom to pursue true love and romance. Gary becomes entangled in the uprising when the radicals take hundreds of international tourists hostage at the same hotel where Gary is staying. To make matters worse, these zealots include the older brother of the beautiful Muslim woman who has fallen for Gary. With nonstop action and cultural intrigue, Welcome to Dubai is the first full book in The Traveler series created by New York Times bestselling author Omar Tyree.
Little, Brown and Company, 10/1/2013
David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell
Malcolm Gladwell, the #1 bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, and What the Dog Saw, offers his most provocative—and dazzling—book yet.
Three thousand years ago on a battlefield in ancient Palestine, a shepherd boy felled a mighty warrior with nothing more than a stone and a sling, and ever since then the names of David and Goliath have stood for battles between underdogs and giants. David’s victory was improbable and miraculous. He shouldn’t have won. Or should he have? In David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell challenges how we think about obstacles and disadvantages, offering a new interpretation of what it means to be discriminated against, or cope with a disability, or lose a parent, or attend a mediocre school, or suffer from any number of other apparent setbacks.
Gladwell begins with the real story of what happened between the giant and the shepherd boy those many years ago. From there, David and Goliath examines Northern Ireland’s Troubles, the minds of cancer researchers and civil rights leaders, murder and the high costs of revenge, and the dynamics of successful and unsuccessful classrooms—all to demonstrate how much of what is beautiful and important in the world arises from what looks like suffering and adversity. In the tradition of Gladwell’s previous bestsellers, David and Goliath draws upon history, psychology, and powerful storytelling to reshape the way we think of the world around us.
NK Publications/Dream Day Press, 11/4/2013, Hardcover
Loukoumi And The Schoolyard Bully by Nick Katsoris
Book & Audio Download Narrated by Nia Vardalos & Morgan Freeman
In Loukoumi And The Schoolyard Bully, Loukoumi is about to have a baby brother. When her friends discuss what to name him, schoolyard bully, Igor the alligator, ridicules Loukoumi’s name, which Loukoumi explains means sweet in Greek and is a type of jelly candy with powdered sugar on top. During the course of the day, through several common interactions, Igor realizes that he and Loukoumi are more alike than he thought. In the end, he learns that bullying is not cool, and although Loukoumi’s name is different, everyone is really all the same.
The book includes an audio download of the story narrated by Nia Vardalos, Oscar nominated screenwriter and star of My Big Fat Greek Wedding, and author of the bestselling book Instant Mom. Oscar winner Morgan Freeman voices the role of the schoolyard bully, Igor the alligator. Other character voices, reprising their roles from past Loukoumi audio books, include Oscar winner Olympia Dukakis as Marika the monkey, Grammy Winner Gloria Gaynor as Fistiki the Cat, Days of Our Lives star John Aniston as Loukoumi’s Daddy, Tony Nominee Constantine Maroulis as Gus the bear, Actor Frank Dicopoulos as Dean the dog and CBS News anchor Alexis Christoforous as Loukoumi.
Viking Adult, 1/7/2014
The Secret Life of Bees (Kindle Edition):
The Invention of Wings: A Novel by Sue Monk Kidd
From the celebrated author of The Secret Life of Bees, a magnificent novel about two unforgettable American women. Sue Monk Kidd presents a masterpiece of hope, daring, the quest for freedom, and the desire to have a voice in the world.
Hetty “Handful” Grimke, an urban slave in early nineteenth century Charleston, yearns for life beyond the suffocating walls that enclose her within the wealthy Grimke household. The Grimke’s daughter, Sarah, has known from an early age she is meant to do something large in the world, but she is hemmed in by the limits imposed on women.
Kidd’s sweeping novel is set in motion on Sarah’s eleventh birthday, when she is given ownership of ten year old Handful, who is to be her handmaid.We follow their remarkable journeys over the next thirty five years, as both strive for a life of their own, dramatically shaping each other’s destinies and forming a complex relationship marked by guilt, defiance, estrangement and the uneasy ways of love. As the stories build to a riveting climax, Handful will endure loss and sorrow, finding courage and a sense of self in the process. Sarah will experience crushed hopes, betrayal, unrequited love, and ostracism before leaving Charleston to find her place alongside her fearless younger sister, Angelina, as one of the early pioneers in the abolition and women’s rights movements.
Inspired by the historical figure of Sarah Grimke, Kidd goes beyond the record to flesh out the rich interior lives of all of her characters, both real and invented, including Handful’s cunning mother, Charlotte, who courts danger in her search for something better.
Penguin Books, 1/7/2014, Kindle Edition
The Secret History of Las Vegas: A Novel by Chris Abani
Before he can retire, Las Vegas detective Salazar is determined to solve a recent spate of murders. When he encounters a pair of conjoined twins with a container of blood near their car, he’s sure he has apprehended the killers, and enlists the help of Dr. Sunil Singh, a South African transplant who specializes in the study of psychopaths. As Sunil tries to crack the twins, the implications of his research grow darker. Haunted by his betrayal of loved ones back home during apartheid, he seeks solace in the love of Asia, a prostitute with hopes of escaping that life. But Sunil’s own troubled past is fast on his heels in the form of a would-be assassin. Suspenseful through the last page, The Secret History of Las Vegas is Chris Abani’s most accomplished work to date, with his trademark visionary prose and a striking compassion for the inner lives of outsiders.
Chicago Review Press, 10/1/2013, Paperback
Afrofuturism: The World of Black Sci-Fi and Fantasy Culture by Ytasha L. Womack
In this hip, accessible primer to the music, literature, and art of Afrofuturism, author Ytasha Womack introduces readers to the burgeoning community of artists creating Afrofuturist works, the innovators from the past, and the wide range of subjects they explore. From the sci-fi literature of Samuel Delany, Octavia Butler, and N. K. Jemisin to the musical cosmos of Sun Ra, George Clinton, and the Black Eyed Peas’ will.i.am, to the visual and multimedia artists inspired by African Dogon myths and Egyptian deities, the book’s topics range from the “alien” experience of blacks in America to the “wake up” cry that peppers sci-fi literature, sermons, and activism. With a twofold aim to entertain and enlighten, Afrofuturists strive to break down racial, ethnic, and social limitations to empower and free individuals to be themselves.
As the only one in the family without magic, Makeda has decided to move out on her own and make a life for herself among the claypicken humans. But when her father goes missing, Makeda will have to find her own power–and reconcile with her twin sister, Abby-if she’s to have a hope of saving him . . .
We’d had to be cut free of our mother’s womb. She’d never have been able to push the two-headed sport that was me and Abby out the usual way. Abby and I were fused, you see. Conjoined twins. Abby’s head, torso and left arm protruded from my chest. But here’s the real kicker; Abby had the magic, I didn’t. Far as the Family was concerned, Abby was one of them, though cursed, as I was, with the tragic flaw of mortality.
Now adults, Makeda and Abby still share their childhood home. The surgery to separate the two girls gave Abby a permanent limp, but left Makeda with what feels like an even worse deformity: no mojo. The daughters of a celestial demigod and a human woman, Makeda and Abby were raised by their magical father, the god of growing things–an unusual childhood that made them extremely close. Ever since Abby’s magical talent began to develop, though, in the form of an unearthly singing voice, the sisters have become increasingly distant.
Today, Makeda has decided it’s high time to move out and make her own life among the other nonmagical, claypicken humans–after all, she’s one of them. In Cheerful Rest, a run-down warehouse, Makeda finds exactly what she’s been looking for: a place to get some space from Abby and begin building her own independent life. There’s even a resident band, led by the charismatic (and attractive) building superintendent.
But when her father goes missing, Makeda will have to find her own talent–and reconcile with Abby–if she’s to have a hope of saving him . . .
He’s the offspring of an ancient, unholy union. She’s a pawn in a high stakes, prophetic game of deception. When he accidentally kills his father an avalanche of unforeseen circumstances turn their worlds upside down and threatens the ultimate salvation of an entire species. On the run for their lives and desperately craving information only his father can provide, he tries to raise him from the dead. But will even a miracle resurrection be enough to satisfy his longing for real relationship with his father and restore order to his universe now spun out of control? And will their baby turn out to be the antichrist?
In a heart stopping romp through the streets of New York City, The AntiChrist Was Conceived in Queens manages to carve out a new genre, the BUFF novel (biblical urban faith fantasy), while following the transformation of Rain Reynolds, a New York City public school legend with real angel’s blood in his veins, and Lisa Vickers, a former D.C. anchorwoman turned pastor with a secret, from immortal basketball icon and crack news investigator to enlightened spiritual emissaries and perhaps their kind’s last real hope to find a place in heaven. And as usual the way to enlightenment goes straight through the dark.
New York Times bestselling author Walter Mosley delivers two speculative tales, in one volume, of everyday people exposed to life-altering truths.
The Gift of Fire
On the Head of a Pin
The Gift of Fire / On the Head of a Pin: Two Short Novels from Crosstown to Oblivion by Walter Mosley
Time: February 16, 2012 from 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Location: Clough Commons Auditorium, Georgia Tech
Organized By: Geogia Tech Science Fiction Department
Come join us as we discuss the state of Black Science Fiction, share our stories and perform a group reading created especially for this event. Participating in this first of its kind event are Ed Hall, L.M. Davis, Milton Davis, Alan Jones, Alicia McCalla, Wendy Raven McNair and Balogun Ojetade.
In this wry take on the post-apocalyptic horror novel, a pandemic has devastated the planet. The plague has sorted humanity into two types: the uninfected and the infected, the living and the living dead.
Now the plague is receding, and Americans are busy rebuilding civilization under orders from the provisional government based in Buffalo. Their top mission: the resettlement of Manhattan. Armed forces have successfully reclaimed the island south of Canal Street — aka Zone One — but pockets of plague-ridden squatters remain. While the army has eliminated the most dangerous of the infected, teams of civilian volunteers are tasked with clearing out a more innocuous variety — the “malfunctioning” stragglers, who exist in a catatonic state, transfixed by their former lives.
Mark Spitz is a member of one of the civilian teams working in lower Manhattan. Alternating between flashbacks of Spitz’s desperate fight for survival during the worst of the outbreak and his present narrative, the novel unfolds over three surreal days, as it depicts the mundane mission of straggler removal, the rigors of Post-Apocalyptic Stress Disorder, and the impossible job of coming to grips with the fallen world.
And then things start to go wrong.
Both spine chilling and playfully cerebral, Zone One brilliantly subverts the genre’s conventions and deconstructs the zombie myth for the twenty-first century.
Brandon M. Easton is a professional writer, screenwriter, and educator based in Los Angeles, CA. Born and raised in Baltimore, MD, Easton is a graduate of Ithaca College and Boston University’s prestigious Screenwriting program. With over fifteen years of experience, Brandon has penned articles for the Boston Herald, Crashpad Magazine, and a variety of other publications. After teaching in NYC public schools for six years, he decided to go for his screenwriting dreams in Hollywood and eventually scored a writing gig on Warner Bros. new ThunderCats TV series. His published work includes Arkanium and Transformers: Armada for Dreamwave Productions, a column for Blacksci-fi.com, and Shadowlaw, his newest major project that will be released in November 2011 from Arcana/Platinum Studios.
In a future world of giant mechanized armored warriors, a rebellious soldier is sentenced to life in a distant prison colony. There he must stop an advanced race of Vampire lords from taking over the world by way of breaking their restricted feeding treaty with the human race, all the while coping with the fact that his very presence in the colony may be a part of their dark design.
(1) Science Fiction may not be a genre indulged by a number of readers, even in this era of iPads and video games. What do you find attractive about it?
That’s an interesting statement because sci-fi is a genre indulged by many, many readers across the board. Whenever a new Star Wars or Star Trek novel is released, it burns up the sales charts for a few weeks. A quick look at the Mass Market Paperback sales lists in Publisher’s Weekly or the New York Times Review of Books will reveal that. And I won’t even get into how well stuff like Game of Thrones is doing. Conversely, most of the large-scale movies released are based on science-fiction intellectual properties and the audience for that is multi-ethnic.
However, if you were to say that fans of Black Urban Literature aren’t fans of sci-fi I would say that you’d be close to the truth. There isn’t a lot of crossover between fans of Zane and fans of Star Trek, regardless of skin color. Some audiences can’t “get into” things that don’t remind them of the familiar world. It comes down to those who need to have their ideals, mores and social perceptions validated by pop culture; at least in their choice of fiction literature.
I find sci-fi attractive because it takes social, political and economic issues and teleports them into an unfamiliar world which allows the author to fully explore these concepts in imaginative ways. Sci-fi authors tend to be incredibly imaginative and I love seeing new worlds take shape. I like getting lost in new realities and it’s also fun to see how they bind their new universe to the laws of plausibility. Some of the better sci-fi stories are ones that are just a little bit beyond what is possible in the real world.
Also, there’s a ridiculous misconception out there that Black people don’t “like” Science-Fiction. That’s one of the biggest lies ever told about the Black literary audience. I’ve been to the San Diego Comic Con (the world’s largest pop culture/sci-fi/geek convention) multiple times and each year I’ve seen the Black populations grow exponentially year after year. There are two or three Black-themed panels at the convention where people like Bill Duke, Ludacris, RZA (from Wu-Tang) and Reginald Hudlin appear regularly. There are several Black sci-fi/comic book conventions around the country every year, with the biggest being OnyxCon in Atlanta, the East Coast Black Age of Comic Con in Philadelphia and the Motor City Black Age of Comics in Detroit. We’re out here and we’re hardly a minority within the literary fan base.
(2) More to the point, what is Shadowlaw about? What are some of the concept or themes that readers might find interesting?
Shadowlaw takes place a few centuries from now, where the Catholic Church is the dominant global political body. The government is a theocratic technocracy and they maintain military dominance through the use of their giant mech armors. Our story opens as that society is on the verge of political revolution, and because of a series of events, the biggest secret in their history will be unveiled. The story revolves around a disgraced soldier named Rictor Caesaro who ends up in a concentration camp; but what Rictor discovers about the camp leads to a huge revelation about the global establishment and his ultimate role in their plans.
It is a study of what happens when you mix government and religion and how people allow themselves to be manipulated by the powers-that-be. There’s much more that I won’t reveal here, but rest assured, if you’re a fan of complex political conspiracy stories, there is a lot to chew on in Shadowlaw.
(3) What is the process like in working with an artist in producing a graphic novel like Shadowlaw?
That’s a long story (laughs). However, I do a free podcast called Writing for Rookies (http://writingforrookies.podcastpeople.com/) where I explain in great detail the process of finding an artist to work with on a graphic novel project. The first thing a writer must do is advertise for an artist on sites like Deviantart.com, Digital Webbing, Conceptart.org and a few similar internet hubs. Or a writer can visit any comic book convention and find artists looking for work whose visual style matches the story sensibility you’re going for.
Not all artists will be “qualified” for your graphic novel. For example, you don’t want an artist who draws in the Pokemon style to do a crime-based comic book. It just doesn’t work. There needs to be a marriage of art and story that reinforces your thematic intention. Some other examples would be Sin City (which was made into a film) and The Walking Dead (which is a TV series on AMC), both have very dark, twisted and macabre art work full of death, sex, violence and pain. You would need a very specific kind of illustrator to bring those works to life. Getting the wrong kind of artist on your project is the same as asking a blind dental surgeon with arthritis to perform a wisdom tooth extraction. It’s a bad idea (laughs).
(4) What are you doing to promote Shadowlaw?
Everything I can. Interviews, panels, postcards, Facebook, Twitter, etc. I have done a lot of emailing and having my agent contact people to cover the book. Being a writer on the new Warner Bros. Animation reboot of ThunderCats has helped immensely. People are more likely to take me seriously when they see legitimate Hollywood credits behind my name.
However it has been tough because everyone in the business is in a constant state of hyping their projects so you have to remain consistent and find new ways of getting people’s attention. Since it took so long for me to complete my project (over a period of 6 years) I’ve managed to get people interested over the course of that time. I’m hoping they all show up when my book is released on November 16th.
(5) What is on your bookshelf? Or, would it be an e-reader that you use? What are you reading and enjoying?
I have a wide variety of interests, but the general selection of books range from politics, sociology, history, sci-fi, true crime, graphic novels and conspiracy literature. Right now, I’m reading a few things including a book called Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey, a book on U.S. Civil War history by Kenneth C. Davis while re-reading Adventures in the Screen Trade by William Goldman. I am into a lot different material all the time.
I have to say, I am not a fan of e-readers at this time. I still love the feel of reading a book. I like visiting bookstores and spending time there browsing and checking out new series.
(Interview posted in August 2011.)
The bestselling science fiction featuring African American characters or by African Americans published so far in 2011.
- Surrender the Dark by L. A. Banks
National bestselling author L.A. Banks’s electrifying new paranormal series is set in a sizzling world where Dark and Light are trapped in an eternal struggle for the fate of mankind.
Celeste Jackson has fought all her life against a fog of hallucination and substance abuse, but it’s not until she meets her protector, Azrael, an angel who has left the safety of the Light, that she learns of the evil forces that have been trying to ruin her, and why. A fierce battle for control of the mortal realm is brewing, and only Celeste—with the help of the Remnant, her half-human, half-angel brethren—can stand in the way. Together, Celeste and Azrael must gather an army of sensitives to defeat the dark powers that have ruled humanity for centuries, but time is running out. If Azrael surrenders to his growing desire for Celeste, he risks being trapped among humanity forever. But the longer he stays, the harder she is to resist. To save the world, Celeste must draw on her own dark experiences with addiction to help Azrael overcome the one temptation that could possibly make him an eternal prisoner—his obsession with her.
- My Soul to Keep by Tananarive Due
When Jessica marries David, he is everything she wants in a family man: brilliant, attentive, ever youthful. Yet she still feels something about him is just out of reach. Soon, as people close to Jessica begin to meet violent, mysterious deaths, David makes an unimaginable confession: More than 400 years ago, he and other members of an Ethiopian sect traded their humanity so they would never die, a secret he must protect at any cost. Now, his immortal brethren have decided David must return and leave his family in Miami. Instead, David vows to invoke a forbidden ritual to keep Jessica and his daughter with him forever.
Harrowing, engrossing and skillfully rendered, My Soul to Keep traps Jessica between the desperation of immortals who want to rob her of her life and a husband who wants to rob her of her soul. With deft plotting and an unforgettable climax, this tour de force reminiscent of early Anne Rice will win Due a new legion of fans.
- Einstein Intersection by Samuel R. Delany
The Einstein Intersection won the Nebula Award for best science fiction novel of 1967. The surface story tells of the problems a member of an alien race, Lo Lobey, has assimilating the mythology of earth, where his kind have settled among the leftover artifacts of humanity. The deeper tale concerns, however, the way those who are “different” must deal with the dominant cultural ideology. The tale follows Lobey’s mythic quest for his lost love, Friza. In luminous and hallucinated language, it explores what new myths might emerge from the detritus of the human world as those who are “different” try to seize history and the day.
- Dream Girl by The Black
Ana is a Companion, one of the artificial people created at Head Box Industries. She is a gift to Roland, a college friend of Head Box Industries’ founder.
Ana is beautiful. She’s designed based on Roland’s fantasy of his perfect woman – his dream girl. From her soft, warm skin to her simulated breathing to the way she sighs under his caress, Ana is the perfect replication of a real woman. No one but Roland, her creator, and his closest friends know that she’s not human.
Ana is programmed to obey Roland’s every command, to fulfill his every desire. She’s programmed to simulate love, if that’s what Roland commands.
Ana wasn’t programmed to love on her own, and certainly not to desire love. But Ana loves Roland. She wants Roland to love her.
Roland thinks there’s something wrong with Ana’s programming. Why else would she think that he would love her – a walking, talking computer? He decides that Ana needs her programming updated so that she can be fixed.
Ana doesn’t want to be fixed. She wants to be loved. And when Roland tries to force her to be updated, he discovers that his dream girl could become his nightmare.
- The Rainbow Z by Zaria Garrison
Val Mitchellson and his wife Zoe are on the run. As an up and coming African American couple, who are expecting their first child they seem to have it all. However, all is not as it seems. A sparkling Z sits on the back of every Zulnilshian, giving them the energy they need to live, but when Zoe met Val at a church picnic she had no idea that he was an alien who carried, the Rainbow Z.
Val was sent to earth to rescue his ruler’s daughters, who were exiled to Earth during the Xindamian war that occurred on their home planet. Xindamians had been banished to earth and they were fighting to return home, after learning that they are the cause of a major epidemic in humans.
When Val learns that the American government wants to capture and do testing on his unborn child, he takes Zoe and escapes into the mountains, leaving the Princesses behind. This prompts the ruler of his planet to travel to earth in search of Val, to kill him.
Val has to find a way to protect his family while helping to prevent an intergalactic war between the two planets.
- The Coyote Kings, Book One: Space-Age Bachelor Pad by Minister Faust
Sherem is brilliant. She’s travelled the world. She speaks a dozen ancient and modern languages, including Fan-Girl. And she can use—or improvise—a hundred weapons from around the globe or of her own design. Quite the list of accomplishments for a 25 year old.
Or is that 2500?
When best friend/roomies Hamza and Yehat, two Gen-X brainiacs too smart for their own good, meet Sherem during the heat of summer, they take one look at her and expect sparks to fly.
They just don’t expect them to come from the edges of blades.
Minister Faust’s first foray into astonishing adventure, pop culture craziness and Africentric awe, The Coyote Kings, Book One: Space-Age Bachelor Pad is already a cult classic that had readers, critics and even Hollywood fluttering with excitement.
- Journey to Mecha: Eight Visionary SF, Fantasy, Philosophical and Satirical Tales by Minister Faust
For those who love the work of Philip K. Dick, Walter Mosley, Nnedi Okorafor or William S. Burroughs, Journey to Mecha–Minister Faust’s second collection of short stories–presents eights startling, bizarre, frightening and comical tales exploring inner and outer worlds of experience.
In these stories, we behold the terrifying results of planetary colonisation from the coloniser’s perspective (“The Ghosts of Carnivores”), anti-colonial liberation struggle at the cosmic level (“The Sun Dogs”), philosophical explorations of the nature of organic and artificial intelligence (“Droplets of Thought”), and the hypocrisy that afflicts human communities (“Shecky the Green Pig”), among many other tales.
This is Minister Faust at some of his earliest and most remarkable leaps of imagination.
- E-Force: Sixteen Stories of Ultra-Freaking Awesomeness by Minister Faust
For fans of Walter Mosley, Eldridge Cleaver, Nalo Hopkinson, Philip K. Dick, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Tananarive Due, John Gardner, William S. Burroughs, Chuck D., Steven Barnes, and Stephen King, comes E-Force: Sixteen Stories of Pure Freaking Awesomeness, including a companion story to Minister Faust’s acclaimed novel The Alchemists of Kush.
Containing all the stories collected in A Bad Bad Beat Was Brewing and Journey to Mecha, E-Force is the definitive short fiction collection by Minister Faust, an author increasingly described as one of the best writers of his generation.
E-Force presents sixteen wide-ranging stories, including the hilarious, the terrifying, the mystical and the compassionate.
Behold anti-colonial liberation struggle at the cosmic level (“The Sun Dogs”), philosophical explorations of the nature of organic and artificial intelligence (“Droplets of Thought”), the hypocrisy that afflicts human communities (“Shecky the Green Pig”), a revisionist take on D.W. Griffith’s Birth of a Nation (“The Worth of a Nation”), and a Grendel-style psychohistory of ancient Egypt’s founding myth (“The Belly of the Crocodile,” a companion story to Minister Faust’s novel The Alchemists of Kush), among many others.
E-Force is an astonishing journey by a visionary author.
- Sight by T.R. Braxton
Young Nathan Walker performs feats with his mind that normal humans can’t fathom, feats that drain his mind and body. His ability is vital in keeping his father, an early twentieth century civil rights activist, from harm. Tragedy strikes when Nathan’s fear of his own power causes him to turn away from it. In the wake of that tragedy, Nathan focuses his vast and frightening capabilities on revenge. He will not stop until vengeance is his, even if he must sacrifice himself to obtain it.
- Fledgling: A Novel by Octavia E. Butler
Fledgling, Octavia Butler’s first new novel in seven years, is the story of an apparently young, amnesiac girl whose alarmingly un-human needs and abilities lead her to a startling conclusion: she is in fact a genetically modified, 53-year-old vampire. Forced to discover what she can about her stolen former life, she must at the same time learn who wanted—and still wants—to destroy her and those she cares for, and how she can save herself. Fledgling is a captivating novel that tests the limits of “otherness” and questions what it means to be truly human.
- Mystify (Kimani Tru) by Artist Arthur
Sasha Carrington has grown up feeling like an outsider, and her parents are too concerned with scaling the Lincoln, Connecticut, social ladder to even notice her. They’d be really horrified to know about the supernatural abilities Sasha and her friends Krystal and Jake possess. But as part of the Mystyx, Sasha has found her place.
Now her parents have suddenly taken an interest in everything she does, and their timing couldn’t be worse. Sasha’s father wants her to become BFFs with snooty Alyssa Turner, who hates Krystal for stealing her boyfriend. Then there’s Antoine Watson, the boy Sasha has liked forever, the boy her parents would never approve of. But with the dark side getting more dangerous by the day, and the Mystyx’s own powers growing in unexpected ways, Sasha is facing choices that could affect her friends, her love life—and even her destiny….
The Kid With The Cubed Fro is the new all age comic book series from Graffiti On The Sun.
The Series follows the adventures of a young super genius African American boy that everyone calls the kid with the cubed fro, due to his square shaped afro. A kid that due to his high IQ causes him to often be at the epicenter of the weirdness of the world, everything from aliens invasion, monsters, bullies, secret government programs, quantum physics mishaps and that’s just a few of the things that the kid most use his smarts to deal with.
“In some ways this series is an oxymoron.” Says Martin Jackson the creator of The Kid With Cubed Fro. “On one hand even though kid genius characters are nothing new we haven’t seen many of Kid with the Cubed Fro’s background or personality in the media at least not as the lead and so that something fresh and new. But on the other hand the series somewhat a throw back to old comics. Not in the retro sense of just trying to copy the surface style of things in the past but the series has a similar energy and feel and gives the reader something they won’t find much in the modern comic market.”
The Kid With the Cubed Fro is on sale now in .99¢ eBook format at Amazon.com
For more information please visited the Graffiti On The Sun website http://graffiti-on-the-sun.blogspot.com.
With allusions to David Bowie and interplanetary travel, Life on Mars imagines a soundtrack for the universe to accompany the discoveries, failures, and oddities of human existence. In these brilliant new poems, Tracy K. Smith envisions a sci-fi future sucked clean of any real dangers, contemplates the dark matter that keeps people both close and distant, and revisits the kitschy concepts like “love” and “illness” now relegated to the Museum of Obsolescence. These poems reveal the realities of life lived here, on the ground, where a daughter is imprisoned in the basement by her own father, where celebrities and pop stars walk among us, and where the poet herself loses her father, one of the engineers who worked on the Hubble Space Telescope. With this remarkable third collection, Smith establishes herself among the best poets of her generation.
AWAKE is book 2 of a YA fantasy trilogy told from the perspective of an African American teen girl, Adisa Summers. Adisa and Micah’s saga continues as the teen couple race against time to save Micah. However conflict interferes with their efforts as well as other forces in the super world. When Adisa tries to secretly meet the parents who abandoned her, an explosive confrontation with Micah drives the couple apart and threatens to destroy them both. Adisa must conquer her fears and take a stand now that she’s finally Awake.
Wendy Raven McNair
Location: LAX Marriott in Los Angeles
Description: Welcome to Loscon 37, Dark Loscon.
November 26-28th 2010
at the LAX Marriott in Los Angeles
$45.00 through November 14th
Loscon is the primary Los Angeles Regional Science Fiction literary convention produced by the Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society.
Held each year over Thanksgiving weekend it is our main fund raising event.
The Los Angeles Science Fantasy Society is the oldest continuously meeting science fiction literary society in the world.
Our meeting are held every Thursday night at our clubhouse on Burbank Blvd in North Hollywood:
11513 Burbank Blvd North Hollywood, CA 91601
Date: November 26-28, 2010
An award-winning literary author presents her first foray into supernatural fantasy with a novel of post-apocalyptic Africa.
In a far future, post-nuclear-holocaust Africa, genocide plagues one region. The aggressors, the Nuru, have decided to follow the Great Book and exterminate the Okeke. But when the only surviving member of a slain Okeke village is brutally raped, she manages to escape, wandering farther into the desert. She gives birth to a baby girl with hair and skin the color of sand and instinctively knows that her daughter is different. She names her daughter Onyesonwu, which means “Who Fears Death?” in an ancient African tongue.
Reared under the tutelage of a mysterious and traditional shaman, Onyesonwu discovers her magical destiny-to end the genocide of her people. The journey to fulfill her destiny will force her to grapple with nature, tradition, history, true love, the spiritual mysteries of her culture-and eventually death itself.
Available 12/10/09 in Paperback
The Darkling by Keoni Anderson follows Henry, a San Bernadino, California, high school student who desperately wants to escape the slums and get admitted to a good college. But when he stumbles upon a mysterious key and note in a local park, all bets are off for a normal college life, when the found items lead Henry to Sofa Re and the dark secret hidden in the shelves of Re’s innocuous bookstore.
A hidden world of alien conspiracies, creatures, hunted fugitives, and relentless persecutors unfold before Henry, who is pulled into an alien civil war whose seeds were planted on Earth millennium earlier, now coming to life in the form of a conflagration in which Henry is destined to play a key role, changing him, his world, and a galaxy forever. Written in nail-biting prose and filled with compelling characters, author Anderson has created a space epic worthy of the best in the science fiction genre. This is a must read for any sci-fi fan, or anyone who loves a great story well told.
The McKenzie Files
By Barry K. Nelson
Publication Date: August 1, 2008
The Human empire, The United Protectorate, is at war with the reptilian alien race known as the Brelac. The Brelac’s onslaught brings forth the creation of genetically engineered Humanoid weapons called Reploids. These Reploids are the perfect weapon. They are identical copies of real Humans that have been captured, killed, cloned, embedded with powerful psionic based abilities, and programmed to kill for the Brelac. They are untraceable as the blend into Human society. And they are believable. So believable that the Reploids themselves don’t even know that they are clones.
Colin McKenzie is a second generation Reploid planted in the Protectorate military. When he turns on his commanding officer in an attempt to protect two shipwrecked Brelac soldiers, he is captured and reprogrammed along with two other arrested Reploids to serve the government that they were originally created to destroy. In the meantime a dark alliance between the Brelac and the separatist organization, Vendetta looms over the Protectorate. The balance is upset when the traitorous Doctor Howard Fenlow, the scientist who is the very creator of the Reploids, manages to create a weapon powerful enough to bring the Protectorate to its knees.