Star Maker, by Olaf Stapledon

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Viking Published: 1937 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Star Maker is a novel that defines ‘sense of wonder.’ From a hill near his safe suburban semi, a man travels the length and breadth of all eternity, exploring an …

Gateway, by Frederick Pohl

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Ballantine Published: 1977 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Here’s a simple story: a man wins a lottery and uses the proceeds to go to ‘Gateway’ — a kind of hyperspace jump-point — to take his chance at discovering …

The Extremes, by Christopher Priest

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Warner Books Published: 1999 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Teresa Simons is a 43-year-old FBI agent who has lost her husband (also FBI) in a Texas shooting. She has come to England on vacation, but also to investigate …

Child of the River, by Paul J. McAuley

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: William Morrow and Co. Published: 1998 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Paul J. McAuley, an up-and-coming British SF writer, is a name to watch. He’s had a number of excellent short stories in Interzone and elsewhere. Child of …

Ancients of Days, by Paul J. McAuley

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: William Morrow and Co. Published: 1999 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Confluence is not a planet. Though it hangs in space like a planet, it oscillates rather than rotates, so that the sun rises in its sky, then …

The Star Fraction, by Ken MacLeod

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates Published: 1998 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Moh Kohn is a mercenary with an intelligent gun. Janis Taine is a biologist researching memory drugs. When Kohn goes to Taine’s laboratory after a raid, the drugs …

Left Hand of Darkness, by Ursula LeGuin

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Ace Published: 1969 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Suppose, in the far future, an isolated planet somewhere in the distant reaches of the galaxy has been colonised by humans and then left alone. That relatively small pocket of …

Prayer-Cushions of the Flesh, by Robert Irwin

Genre: Fantasy Publisher: Dedalus Limited Published: 1997 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Seeing the title, Prayer-Cushions of the Flesh, the reader might get the idea that Robert Irwin’s novella contained an above-average amount of sex. The reader would be correct. Set in …

Gridlock, by Ben Elton

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Warner Books Published: 1993 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Before you ask, let me say that Ben Elton’s Gridlock definitely comes under the heading of speculative fiction. Though in essence it is a politico-industrial satire set mostly in …

Murther and Walking Spirits, by Robertson Davies

Genre: Fantasy Publisher: Viking Published: 1991 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? This is a frame story; journalist Connor Gilmartin, having been unceremoniously murdered by his wife’s lover, sits incorporeal next to his murderer at the Toronto Film Festival, watching from the afterlife …

Great Apes, by Will Self

Genre: Modern/Urban Fantasy Publisher: Grove/Atlantic Published: 1997 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? This is a maddening book — sharply written, of course, as one would expect from Will Self — but maddening nonetheless, in more ways than one. For a start we’re …

Voyage, by Stephen Baxter

Genre: Science Fiction Publisher: Harper Collins Published: 1997 Reviewer Rating: Book Review by Paul S. Jenkins Have you read this book? Voyage is the story of a mission that never was. In this long and meticulously researched novel, Baxter speculates that if John F. Kennedy had survived the assassination attempt …