Review by Robinne Weiss
Frankie N. Stein wants to be a famous inventor, but her inventions only get her into trouble. Her monster tomato named Martie grows to the size of a beach ball and terrorises the school, her shrink ray is confiscated by the teacher, her Homeworkulator decides it doesn’t like doing homework, her Megadron hot air balloon monster eats children…But these setbacks only spur Frankie to more wild ideas.
The Frankie Files is a collection of what are essentially journal entries written by a precocious, nerdy girl. Frankie’s voice is distinct, strong, and full of dry humour, though her thought processes are decidedly those of a child—don’t look for coherence or logic in the mind of a six year-old. As in many children’s books, most of the adult characters in The Frankie Files are simply impediments to Frankie’s brilliant ideas. All except one mysterious woman, Ms Xavier, who shows up from time to time to enable and encourage Frankie in her creative scientific pursuits.
Tracking Al Qaeda in Pakistan, sex on a Fijian beach, fighting UFOs in Africa – Sam Kahu’s 2009 might sound exciting for a fifteen year old, but there’s no room for error. Earth’s alien overlords want no repeat of the last battle. They want Sam and the rest of the Changels eliminated. But as natural psychics spiritual risks also haunt them. Sam learns he must still deal with his father’s legacy of evil, then he discovers his partner, the beautiful but manipulative Tahira, is way ahead of him. Has Tahira…
Talie Helene and Liz Gryzb are now reading for their ongoing Year’s Best series, and we encourage our members to submit. This will be the seventh volume of the award-winning annual series collecting the best fantasy and horror stories from the Antipodes.
The deadline for submissions is 1 July 2017.
“Talie and I are now reading for the Ticonderoga Publications’ 2016 Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror anthology. The submissions guidelines are found at the link below. While we read widely, if you’d like to make extra-sure we’ve considered your story for inclusion, please send us a copy.
Neil Clarke, editor of Clarkesworld Magazine, is currently looking for reprints for a new science fiction anthology.
More Human Than Human is a reprint anthology focused on the theme of androids, replicants, and other artificial humanoids that will be published by Night Shade Books in trade paperback, ebook, and (maybe) audio editions in late 2017.
Neil is looking for:
ARMISTICE collects tales of a time millions of years ago on far off worlds, a time when the inlaris’ home planet still existed; Woelf Dietrich, M.J. Kelley, Dana Leipold and Elaine Chao give us stories about intergalactic space travel and tragedy wrought by a global war that tore Earth asunder; narratives of hope and love, and yes, we take you to the wastelands of North America, where… Well, you’ll just have to read it to find out. But mostly these stories involve Earth: exploring first contact, the golden era of alien collaboration, the Great War, and the interspecies conflicts that still rattle the world.
Auckland Allies 3: Unsafe Harbour by Mike Reeves-McMillan
Nazi sorcerers are plotting to steal the body of a tech billionaire, and the Allies must stop them, while outnumbered and, literally, outgunned.
Damaged by earlier encounters, but more determined than ever, they must draw on the spirit of the city itself – and their growing mastery of the magic in Sir Isaac Newton’s lost manuscript – to defend Auckland and each other. But how bulletproof is Tara’s new super suit, exactly? And can Sparx get a warning to the billionaire in time?
Solve the murder. Stop the war. Save the world.
Sir Brannon Kesh spent years building a new life as a physician, leaving the name Bloodhawk and the war that spawned it behind. But when the King’s cousin is murdered, duty calls him back. The crime scene suggests dark magic and the evidence points to the ambassador of Nilar, an alluring woman with secrets of her own, who sees Bloodhawk as little more than a war criminal.
As bodies pile up and political ramifications escalate, Brannon must join forces with a vain mage, a socially awkward priest, and a corpse animating shaman to solve the murders and prevent another war. But who can he trust when the phases of a bigger plan take shape?
The Risen are the greatest danger Brannon has ever faced. If he and his team cannot stop the killer then all of Kalanon – and the world – will descend into darkness.
The SUBMERGED, ALL HAIL OUR ROBOT CONQUERORS!, and THE DEATH OF ALL THINGS anthologies from Zombies Need Brains LLC are now open up submissions for a few remaining slots in each anthology. If you have a story idea that fits one of the anthology themes, write it up, revise it, polish it, and send it in for consideration.
Stories for this anthology must be original (no reprints or previously published material), no more than 7,500 words in length, and must satisfy the theme of the anthology. Pay rate will be an advance of a minimum of 6 cents per word for the short stories.
Canterbury author E.G Wilson’s short story 12-36, which appeared in the At The Edge anthology (Paper Road Press, 2016), is under development to be made into a short film by local production company Rolling Ridges.
They are currently running a crowdfunding campaign to raise the funds they will need to build the set, make the costumes, and hire the gear needed to pull it all together.
You can support local NZ filmmakers adapting kiwi spec fic onto the screen by checking out their PledgeMe page and getting behind the project.
Two ecological engineers must change their world to save it, no matter the cost to all they love.
Fee comes from the mountains of her world. She grew up with trees, rushing streams and rain. The grasslands beyond the foothills are Caleb’s home. Dry, windblown, a place of endless light and untouchable horizons.
Both are ecological engineers for the Survey, working to save their world from environmental disaster before it’s too late. Because unless something is done, soon, the planet is going to hit back. Storms, floods, drought. Don’t bother taking your pick, says the planet, you’re going to get the lot.
Lawless Lands: Tales from the Weird Frontier is an anthology embodying the frontier spirit of the American West, but with a weird twist. Gunslingers with laser pistols, cattle drives through the galaxy, cursed nuggets of gold, and talking jack rabbits that grant wishes. Fantasy, SF, or horror, if it’s weird, we want to see it.
The book will be funded with a Kickstarter campaign in December 2016. We will pay each author a minimum of 4 cents a word, with the possibility of more if the Kickstarter is successful, and two physical copies.
When going somewhere dangerous, take a human. Humans are tough. Humans can last days without food. Humans heal so quickly, they pierce holes in themselves or inject ink under their epidermis for fun. Humans will walk for days on broken bones in order to make it to safety. Humans will literally cut off bits of themselves if trapped by a disaster.
You would be amazed what humans will do to survive. Or to ensure the survival of others they feel responsible for.
That’s the other thing. Humans pack-bond, and they spill their pack-bonding instincts everywhere. Sure it’s weird when they talk sympathetically to broken spaceships or try to pet every lifeform that scans as non-toxic. It’s even a little weird that just existing in the same place as them for long enough seems to make them care about you.
“This is the Affinity Project – where freewill is turned to ash.”
Evie is out of options. She must comply with the Affinity Project – obey their rules, play their deadly games, give up Jamie. And her losses keep growing…
When she decides to help a small group of Shields trying to affect change, Evie finds herself in the firing line. Counsellor Knox is intent on revealing her secrets and shackling her to the Affinity Project for life. To protect her family, Evie must betray those closest to her.