May 24, 2013

ConQuesT 44 runs May 24-26, 2013!

We hope you're in Kansas City Today!
ConQuesT 44, one of the longest-running general science fiction conventions in the United States, starts today at the Holiday Inn Express CoCo Key Resort in Kansas City, MO.  
The convention runs May 24-26, 2013.
Author GoH is Patrick Rothfuss
Fan GoH is Chris Garcia
Toastmistress is Patricia Wrede
Artist GoH is John Picacio
Editor GoH is Teresa Neilsen Hayden
Comics GoH is John Kovalic

ConQuesT also is blessed with a large group of additional guests and panelists who are well known in the fields of writing, art, music, science, and many other areas of expertise, including George R.R. Martin, Robin Wayne Bailey, Mitchell Bentley, Dell Harris, Lee Killough, Selina Rosen, and many others (scroll to the bottom of the Guests page for a partial listing).  

ConQuesT also has an excellent Art Show, Dealers Room, a respected Writers Workshop, and an annual Masquerade, as well as many other popular events.

If you have access to Facebook, please post images from this year's ConQuesT that you'd like to share, on our KaCSFFS Page.  More information about ConQuesT 44 and the ConQuesT Art Show also are available on Facebook.

IMAGE: is this year's ConQuesT 44 logo, courtesy of the ConQuesT website.

May 23, 2013

Cindy N. Reviews the Transformers Movies--Part Three

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!

The Movie: Transformers: Dark of the Moon (2011)
The reviewer: Cindy N. 
Available from: Amazon

Went into this one with an attitude of “If I see BumbleBee at least once I will be happy.” Slow at first, not sure where it was going to go, nice real footage from actual news footage.  Overall better story than Revenge, which was basically a two hour fight scene between movies and I could have missed it without losing anything storyline-wise.  None of my questions from Revenge were answered.  No explanation for the absence of Mikaela; introduce a blonde and move on.  I see I have to wait a year for Transformers 4. 
 
Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!

More reviews are coming soon! Please note: this concludes our Spring 2013 50-Word Review Challenge.  The winners of our "Most Reviews Submitted" and "Most Popular Review" categories will be announced at ConQuesT 44, and also at the June KaCSFFS Meeting on June 15, 2013.

The KaCSFFS Board and membership are considering whether to issue another Challenge for the summer.  If you would like to comment on this decision, please use the comment section below.  We would love to know if our readers have enjoyed reading all the reviews.

We actually received more reviews than we could publish during the announced contest period, so we will continue publishing them until we run out. Please don't let us run out of reviews!
 
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of IMDB.

May 22, 2013

Cindy N. Reviews the Transformers Movies--Part Two

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!
The Movie: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009) 
The reviewer: Cindy N. 
Available from: Amazon 

WT? The questions I was left with are endless. While the story made me think, so that is why there are pyramids.  How did the Decepticons create a flesh covered bot?  Where were the scenes of my favorite car BumbleBee?  Really send him off to protect the parents during the fight scene?  Having since seen Transformers 3, I totally believe Revenge of the Fallen was made to use up scenes left on the cutting room floor from the original movie. I end this review as I started it with WT? 

Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!

More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of IMDB.

May 21, 2013

Cindy N. Reviews The Transformers Movies--Part One

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!


The Movie: Transformers (2007)
The reviewer: Cindy N. Available from: Amazon


-->
A story was told which was complete but left open-ended for future stories.  There is a very personal side to this movie.  I promised a dear friend of 28 years that I would watch this movie 37 days before he passed away.  I fell in love with older version of BumbleBee in the used car lot and then cried through my first viewing.  My new nickname is queen of the silent tear.   Friends made me watch it again. I laughed and cried. I have watched it three times now; still cry, but another favorite movie to watch again. 
Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!

More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of IMDB.

May 20, 2013

Jon Moss Reviews "The Forever War"

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!

The book: The Forever War
The author: Joe Haldeman
The reviewer: Jon Moss
Available from: Barnes & Noble


If I had been born in the 50s and also been born male, I’m positive I would have loved this story. All the pain, confusion and futility of Vietnam but strung out and extrapolated over three thousand years (or about three years relatively speaking). The last fourth of the book salvaged the first three parts.
An extended review is available on Moss's blog.
 

Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!
More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of Barnes & Noble.
 

May 18, 2013

Coming Up! SF&F Literati on the THIRD Monday of May:


SF&F Literati go Into the Storm, in May!
SelectionInto the Storm, by Taylor Anderson
When: May 20 (third Monday!) 2013, 7:00 p.m.
WhereOak Park Barnes & Noble Bookseller, 11323 W 95th Street
Overland Park, KS 66214, on the 2nd floor.
Order this book from Barnes & Noble, or other fine booksellers.

Overview from Barnes & Noble:

Pressed into service when World War II breaks out in the Pacific, the USS Walker, a Great War-era destroyer, finds itself retreating from pursuing Japanese battleships. 

Its captain, Lieutenant Commander Matthew Patrick Reddy, desperately leads the Walker into a squall, hoping it will give them cover, only to emerge into an alternate world. A world where two species have evolved: the cat-like Lemurians and the reptilian Griks, and they are at war.

With its power and weaponry, the Walker’s very existence could alter the balance of power. And for Reddy and his crew, who have the means to turn a primitive war into a genocidal Armageddon, one thing becomes clear. They must determine whose side they're on. Because whichever species they choose is the winner.

Note: there are four books in the “Destroyermen” series; this is Book 1.

Get ready now for next month!
Hugh Howey's book Wool is the selection for the June 24, 2013 meeting.  It will be here sooner than you think!

Overview from Barnes & Noble:In a ruined and toxic landscape, a community exists in a giant silo underground, hundreds of stories deep. There, men and women live in a society full of regulations they believe are meant to protect them. Sheriff Holston, who has unwaveringly upheld the silo’s rules for years, unexpectedly breaks the greatest taboo of all: He asks to go outside. 

His fateful decision unleashes a drastic series of events. An unlikely candidate is appointed to replace him: Juliette, a mechanic with no training in law, whose special knack is fixing machines. Now Juliette is about to be entrusted with fixing her silo, and she will soon learn just how badly her world is broken. The silo is about to confront what its history has only hinted about and its inhabitants have never dared to whisper. Uprising.
NoteHugh Howey gave a live presentation about his novel on March 13, 2013 in the Kansas City area, as part of the Rainy Day Books events series.  Howey also was featured in the Kansas City Star.   

IMAGE CREDITS: Many thanks to Taylor Anderson's website for the Into the Storm cover art, and to Barnes & Noble for the cover of Wool.

KaCSFFS Meets Today!

ConSuite Food and Miscellaneous Business
Where: The Writers Place, 3607 Pennsylvania Ave., Kansas City, MO 64111
When: TODAY, May 18, 2013
Times: Executive Board Meeting-5:30 p.m.--Regular Club Meeting: 7:00 p.m. (note this is a change from previous meetings).

Executive Board Meeting:
The new President, Ty Gephardt, has announced an ambitious agenda for the Executive Board Meeting, beginning at 5:30 p.m.  As mandated by the 2012 Bylaws, all Board meetings are OPEN meetings, and may be attended by all interested club members.  The agenda covers:

ConQuesT Topics
o   Current Status, Updates, & Needs
o   ConSuite Location
o   Closing Ceremonies specifics
o   ConQuesT SOPs
o   Victoria's 5 Year Budget Proposal
o   Ken's GOH 2015 Suggestion
Future Meetings
o   June Picnic, theme?
o   July Program?
Yahoo Groups Code of Conduct
o   present code to BOD
o   discuss response options
Ty's ideas for 2013

ConSuite Food:
As previously announced elsewhere, today's KaCSFFS Meeting will (we hope) showcase some ConSuite favorite recipes (we also hope you'll bring them to ConQuesT next weekend!).

May 14, 2013

Ty Gephardt Reviews “Legacy”

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!

The book: Legacy
The author: James H. Schmitz
The reviewer: Ty Gephardt
Available from: Amazon

A would be pulp fiction story with a strong female lead that falls down in almost every scene. Following the standard tropes of pulp SF, this wild tale of mystery and intrigue revolves around Plasmoids, a lumpy, inert, biomachine of many parts. Unfortunately, Schmitz fails to adequately describe this and almost everything else to help realize what would be a fascinating tale. The narrative relies heavily on flashbacks for scenes readers have read. Regrettably, this extends to the climatic final act taking the form of “you know Bob, that fight a few months ago. . .” Pass on this book!

Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!
More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of Amazon.com.

May 13, 2013

Jon Moss Reviews "A Canticle for Leibowitz"

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!

The book: A Canticle for Leibowitz
The author: Walter M. Miller
The reviewer: Jon Moss
Available from: Barnes & Noble

Miller’s award-winning novel stands the test of time and justifiably deserves to be continuously in print.  So many questions to ponder, presented through Miller’s monastic brothers preserving the last scraps of our civilization and an undying Jewish hermit (assumedly the Wandering Jew of legend) searching for Him who said ‘Come forth!’ Even though the Cold War is over, and mutually assured destruction no longer so assured, A Canticle for Leibowitz posits convincingly that ‘those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it.’
An extended review is available on Moss's blog.
 
Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!
More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of Lake County Library System.

May 12, 2013

Jon Moss Reviews "To Reign in Hell"

Taking the 50-Word Review Challenge!

The book: To Reign in Hell
The author: Steven Brust
The reviewer: Jon Moss
Available from: Barnes & Noble
-->
Brust’s second published novel, To Reign in Hell, seemed to me almost an alternate history/legend/mythos to Milton’s Paradise Lost. Not having read Milton’s works thoroughly, I probably missed much of Brust’s subtleties, wit and demonic humor. I still smiled at his quirky repartee among the bit characters. He coaxed me into sympathizing with the traditional enemy host, illustrated that truth can be in the eye of the beholder and perception is everything.
An extended review is available on Moss's blog.
 
Readers, Please Comment: Did you enjoy this review? Dislike it? Agree? Disagree? Please share what you think!
More reviews coming soon!
COVER IMAGE: Courtesy of Barnes & Noble.

May 11, 2013

Kansas City Horror Book Club


By S.G. Browne

Details: Sunday, May 12, 2013; 12:00pm until 1:30pm at Westport Coffee House: 4010 Pennsylvania Ave, Kansas City, Missouri.

Westport Coffee House is located in Westport a block west of Broadway and shares parking with the nearby shopping center.


Synopsis: For fans of Max Brooks’s The Zombie Survival Guide and zombie aficionados everywhere, a hilarious debut novel about life (and love) after death.

Meet Andy Warner, a recently deceased everyman and newly minted zombie. Resented by his parents, abandoned by his friends, and reviled by a society that no longer considers him human, Andy is having a bit of trouble adjusting to his new existence. But all that changes when he goes to an Undead Anonymous meeting and finds kindred souls in Rita, an impossibly sexy recent suicide with a taste for the formaldehyde in cosmetic products, and Jerry, a twenty-one-year-old car-crash victim with an exposed brain and a penchant for Renaissance pornography. When the group meets a rogue zombie who teaches them the joys of human flesh, things start to get messy, and Andy embarks on a journey of self-discovery that will take him from his casket to the SPCA to a media-driven class-action lawsuit on behalf of the rights of zombies everywhere.

Darkly funny, surprisingly touching, and gory enough to satisfy even the most discerning reader, Breathers is a romantic zombie comedy (rom-zom-com, for short) that will leave you laughing, squirming, and clamoring for more. Provided by Amazon.com


The official Facebook Event page.



This event was organized by Earline Beebe on behalf of the KC Horror Book Club. If you are interested in this or any other upcoming events by the KC Horror club, please join our group! Book cover is © Random House under their Three Rivers Press imprint, and was provided by Amazon.com