Greg Egan’s Uncanny Valley

Uncanny Valley, Greg Egan (Ilustration by Mark Smith).
Uncanny Valley, Greg Egan (Ilustration by Mark Smith).

I have been acquiring original fiction for Tor.com for a while now, both for the website and for their novella program.  The latest, and one of my favourites, is a new science fiction novelette by Greg Egan.

This is the blurb for “Uncanny Valley”:

Immortality, but at what price, in what form, and how could you be you? In the near future it’s possible to build a new you, a better you, one that could carry on forever.  But if you could carry on, if you could make choices about who you would be forever, how much of your past would you bring with you? Would you be tempted to maybe…edit? Adam isn’t all that he used to be, but he wants to be.

It’s classic Egan, powerful and challenging. The terrific artwork is by Mark Smith (another inspired choice by Irene Gallo), and the story will be out to read and own in August of this year.

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Episode 308: Paul Kincaid, Ken Macleod, and the works of Iain (M) Banks

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Any time the Coode Street Podcast connects with the United Kingdom it’s a special occasion. Jonathan stays up until the dead of night (often with a whisky in hand), while Gary is driven out of bed and into the arms of coffee. This week, in the face of puzzling technical difficulties, Jonathan and Gary are joined on the podcast by noted critic Paul Kincaid and award-winning writer Ken Macleod to discuss Paul’s new book on the work of Iain Banks, science fiction, writing in Scotland, and much more.

The aforementioned technical difficulties do mean there’s echo on the line from Scotland, for which we apologise. We’ve tried to minimise it as much as possible, and think the conversation is worth persevering with, but are sorry the overall quality isn’t a bit better. We hope you’ll enjoy the episode and, as always, we should be back next week.

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Episode 307: Theodora Goss and the Alchemist’s Daughter

This week we talk with the multi-talented Theodora Goss, whose forthcoming novel, The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, draws not only from her own doctoral research in late Victorian Gothic fiction, but from her earlier story “The Mad Scientist’s Daughter.”

By focusing on a group of women characters drawn from classic tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Robert Louis Stevenson, H.G. Wells, and Mary Shelley—and bearing the familiar names of Jekyll, Hyde, Moreau, Rappaccini, and Frankenstein—Goss gives a voice to the largely invisible figures from classic works of terror.

We also touch upon her recent story, “Come See the Living Dryad”—is it fantasy or not?– as well as the reasons behind the appeal of monsters and the monstrous, and the delights of playing with genre.

As always, we’d like thank Dora for making time to talk to us, and we hope you enjoy the episode.

Note: We experienced some technical difficulties with this episode. There were issues with the audio (Dora drops out occasionally). We think the episode is interesting enough to release, but do apologise for the problems and hope you’ll persevere.

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Episode 306: Geoff Ryman and 100 African Writers of SFF

This week we are joined by Nebula, Clarke, Tiptree, Campbell, and World Fantasy Award winner Geoff Ryman to discuss his important new project, 100 African Writers of SF/F, which sees Ryman traversing the African continent meeting new creators of science fiction and fantasy to discuss their careers, their work and the places they find themselves working.

We also discuss the recently announced 2017 nominations for the African Speculative Fiction Society’s Nommo Award, which will be presented later this year, and a diverse range of other work.  Toward’s the end of our discussion Geoff mentions Adofe Atogun’s novel, Taduno’s Song which we promised to list here so listeners could find it.

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As always, we’d like to thank Geoff for making the time to join us, and hope you enjoy the podcast. If you’d like to do some further reading in African SFF some resources are listed below. We’d also strongly recommend checking out the voters packet for the Nommo Awards, which will be released shortly.

Some online resources:

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Episode 305: Kim Stanley Robinson and the Drowning of New York

This week we’re joined by the delightful and provocative Kim Stanley Robinson, to discuss his new novel New York 2140, his “comedy of coping” about dealing with catastrophic climate change in the next century, as well as how his previous novel Aurora challenged one of the cherished ideas in science fiction, the literary and artistic function of exposition in fiction, the relationship of science fiction writers to “futurists” or to MFA programs in creative writing, and his own distinguished career in the context of both science fiction and contemporary environmental literature.

As always, our thanks to Stan for making the time to tallk to us.  We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back next week!

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