Reviews: NPR, LA Times, CSZ

Woman is amazing.

Amal El-Mohtar

Readercon was a whirlwind! After a day on the road car-conning back to Ottawa, I’m home-ish, catching up on correspondence and things that need announcing before I can even begin to process what an incredible, beautiful, excellent weekend it was.

So! Reviews!

First, Stina Leicht’s Cold Iron comes out today, and my review of it dropped this weekend.

In the acknowledgements for Cold Iron, Stina Leicht writes that one of the questions at the core of her new Malorum Gates series is, “if Tolkien had been American, what would fantasy look like?” It’s a fascinating question — and I don’t intend to sound cynical or glib when I say that, according to Cold Iron, the answer is, at least partly, “more full of guns.” Cold Iron very attentive to the nuances of early modern warfare, on both land and sea. It explores the clash between competing technologies and philosophies…

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“The Truth About Owls” Wins the Locus Award

Amal El-Mohtar

Photo by--and hand of--Keffy Kehrli. Photo by–and hand of–Keffy Kehrli.

It’s been a rollercoaster of a week.

I’m writing this beneath a rainbow banner WordPress has put up to celebrate SCOTUS’ decision to grant equal marriage rights in the US. This week “Madeleine” appeared online in Queers Destroy Science Fiction. People have been telling me, all week, how much it moved them, that it made them cry, that they loved it, and it’s been sustaining me hugely during what has been, on several personal fronts, a really rough time.

But then–these last few days. K Tempest Bradford reviews “Madeleine” in her weekly io9 short fiction column and titles it–let’s say, unexpectedly. Some things on personal fronts resolve themselves into utterly unlooked for happiness. My NPR review of Max Gladstone’s wonderful Craft Sequence goes live. And then–I get wind that the Locus Awards are happening and I literally flee the house.

I had made the…

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With Apologies to Rabbie Burns

Amal El-Mohtar

Once upon a time, lo these many years ago, CSE Cooney and I were on the phone, chattering. I said something which led to her talking about DANGER and LUVE and I said “My Luve is like a bloody rose!” To which she replied, “That’s newly sprung from wounds!” Consequently we decided we had to pastiche the whole thing, line by line. So.

For your delectation, in honour of the bonny man himself and this day of his birth, we offer the following:

by CSE Cooney and Amal El-Mohtar

My luve is like a bloody rose
that’s newly sprung from wounds
My luve is a cacophany
Come howlin’ from the tombs.

As fair thou art, my bony lass
So ravenous am I
And I will dig thy grave, my dear
With a trowel of thy thigh.

With a trowel of thy thigh, my Dear
So sweet and whitely…

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The BACT Mini-Tour

Banjo Apocalypse Crinoline Troubadours

Sequence 01.Still002


The Buttery House Concert
Dorcester, Massachusetts
Where? The Buttery
What Time? Wednesday, July 9th
7 PM – 10 PM

Opening Act: The Midnight Belles
(Goth Folkies Faye Ringel and April Grant)
Second Act: Celtic Elvis
(Jeremy Cooney, Guitar)

Free. Donations accepted. Reservations required.
Email: aprilcatherinegrant at gmail dot com to reserve seating.


Burlington, Massachusetts
Where? Burlington Marriott, “Inspire” Room
What time? Friday, July 11th
4 PM

Guest Writers: Patty Templeton and Nicole Kornher-Stace

Readercon Registration Fee


Westerly, Rhode Island
Where: Maize N Manna Wholefoods
What Time: Sunday, July 13th
6 PM – 9 PM

Opening Act: Guest Artist “Celtic Elvis”
(Jeremy Cooney, Guitar and Vocals)

Canned Foods or Dried Goods to benefit The Jonnycake Center of Westerly
Our local food bank and thrift store.

(A tip jar will also be passed, to help…

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Writer. Performer. Poet