Sunday, February 28, 2010


Crom take some of the folks that work for certain internet companies. At least my server is not dropping me every ten minutes like it was. But now it seems all the3 spam filters are out of sync and I'm getting over 2000 emails a day and 1999 of them are spam. Only thing is I have to look at all of them to see if any are important.
On top of that they want an extra fee to install a newer spam filter. The only thing is the spam fee is FOUR TIMES what my annual fee is for the site.


I'll be back with reviews shortly.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Andrew Koenig found

My sympathy and best thoughts go out to Walter Koenig and his family in the death of his son Andrew. He was found in a secluded part of a park in Vancouver. I'm at a loss as I know many of you are as well.

Think pleasant thoughts and tell the people in your life that you love them and that you are there for them if they need you.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

An Article by Scott Nicholson

I'm taking Scott at his word and republish this here. He always makes a good point.

Here's a free article for you to blog, post, publish, or throw away, as long as you include my byline and web address. Thanks and enjoy.

Paper or Plastic: Is a Book Still a Book?
By author Scott Nicholson

Reading paper books is an emotional experience for which many of us have developed nostalgia. We remember our Dr. Seuss books, our early school readers, our library adventures, then the teen years and really ranging into our individual tastes. Right now, most of us did that with paper books. Ten years from now? I think not.

My first music of my own was a scratchy Rod Stewart vinyl LP I found in a dumpster (yeah, we were poor and didn't have much besides my dad's old-school country 8-tracks). I have a cassette tape of that scratchy vinyl LP, and that is my version of the experience--right down to the skip in the middle of "I'd Rather Go Blind." Even if I hear the song on a CD, my brain puts in the skip, because that's the way I know the song. If I sing it to myself, the skip is in there. That's my experience and my nostalgia.

Have you ever tried to play a vinyl album for a kid? They think you're nuts. Some people get fighting mad over the very idea of ebooks, as if this were Bradbury's "Fahrenheit 451." Paper books are "real books" or "true books," they say. Yet they still call CDs and iPod downloads "records" or "albums," the same name they used when the format was a large vinyl disc. And music wasn't harmed in the least. In fact, most of us who aren't crotchety old fuddyduds will allow that music is vaster, broader, and more experimental than ever because it is more easily shared and experienced.

I remember in the 1990s when a few Chicken Littlers were warning about the death of paper books. I laughed at them. I remember in the early 21st century when writers first started wondering about whether they should protect their electronic rights. The industry laughed at them. On Christmas Day, Amazon sold more ebooks than paper books. I'm not laughing anymore. I am selling ebooks. And I am writing books with the expectation that they will be ebooks. And I am planning the long arc of my remaining career with the intention of staying "in print" and viable. On my own if necessary. And passing that to my heirs for the life of copyright. It's not only realistic, it's stupid not to do it.

And, as with the ease of music proliferation because of technological advancement, I see reading returning to the working class. You know, those people who can't afford $25 books and can barely afford time to read them because they are busting their chops to feed and house a family. A $2 ebook they can read in small chunks, and the convenience of carrying around 1,500 books at all times, will get more people peeking "between the pages."

Since I became interested in this issue, my research has shown that Kindle, Nook, and other ereader-device owners not only buy and read more books than they ever have before, they are trying genres and subject matter they never would have picked up otherwise. One man on the Kindle Boards hadn't read a book in 30 years because of visual impairment. Because he can now blow up the text size, he has read four books since Christmas. Teachers are taking their Kindles into classrooms and making reading cool again. Kids already have their own personal devices and are used to them. That's their nostalgia.

Publishers are trying mightily to stem the tide because they are invested in an old model in which they control and dole out content and lock up writers' rights for as long as possible. It's a central and overlooked element of the current ebook pricing wars. That's a side issue for readers but it's going to become critical if you believe the author is why we buy books, not the physical means or channel through which the story travels.

I fully appreciate those who defend the smell of pulp and ink, the tactile sensation of pages, the brilliance of a four-color paper cover and foil-stamped title logo. Many book bloggers fiercely defend paper books and most won't review ebooks at all. But if you look closely, the blogging phenomenon took over the role of "real newspapers" in reviewing and announcing books, to such a degree that many bloggers now are on the reviewer lists of major publishers, and obviously have a vested interest in preserving the current model because they are getting cases of free books. I don't blame them for not reviewing ebooks, because then they are left with nothing but the experience, and everyone loves free stuff. Already, there is a new model developing in which ebook bloggers may be readying to take over for "real book bloggers."

I love paper books, and I believe they will be around for the rest of my lifetime. There will still be bookstores, but they will be specialty shops and antiquaries instead of mainstream commerce centers. How much money have you spent at your local indie bookstore lately? Can you even find an indie within a two-hour radius? Here in my small university town, we have one indie bookstore and one specialty store that sells vinyl records. We no longer have a store that sells CDs, and only one chain video store. Are vinyl records the only "real music" or VHS tapes the only "real movies"?

I still have plenty of paper books. Some I keep because of nostalgia. I look at the object and feel that same attachment as I would with the old Rod Stewart album if it were still around. Other books I give away, but I still have the experience of the story. The "paper book" object is separate from the "book" experience of the story. Objects are ephemeral and paper crumbles to dust. The experience endures.

Scott Nicholson is the author of eight "real books" and six "fake books" (er, ebooks). Some of the real ones have the same stories as the fake ones. The difference is the "real books" have often been declared out of print by the publisher and removed from store shelves, so his dedicated readers must take extreme measures to find them, including plundering garage sales and stealing from the library. His ebooks are easily available and cheap. The Skull Ring and The Red Church are two such cheap books at under $2 each. But, as the commercials say, the experience is priceless. Visit Scott at or

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Doo Wop Quiz


Thirty great memories about music that caused our parents and teachers grief!
Take the quiz and see how you score as a true ''Oldies Fan.''
Write down your answers and check them against the answers at the end. Don't cheat!

1. When did ''Little Suzie'' finally wake up?
(a) The movie's over, its 2 o'clock
(b) The movie's over, its 3 o'clock
(c) The movie's over, its 4 o'clock

2 ''Rock Around The Clock'' was used in what movie?
(a) Rebel without a Cause
(b) Blackboard Jungle
(c) The Wild Ones

3. What's missing from a Rock & Roll standpoint? Earth _____
(a) Angel
(b) Mother
(c) Worm

4. ''I found my thrill . . .'' where?
(a) Kansas City
(b) Heartbreak Hotel
(c) Blueberry Hill

5. ''Please turn on your magic beam, __________ bring me a dream,''
(a) Mr. Sandman
(b) Earth Angel
(c) Dream Lover

6. For which label did Elvis Presley first record?
(a) Atlantic
(b) RCA
(c) Sun

7. He asked, ''Why's everybody always pickin' on me?'' Who was he?
(a) Bad, Bad Leroy Brown
(b) Charlie Brown
(c) Buster Brown

8. In Bobby Darin's ''Mack the Knife,'' the one with the knife, was named:
(a) MacHeath
(b) MacCloud
(c) MacNamara

9. Name the song with ''A-wop bop a-loo bop a-lop bam boom.''
(a) Good Golly, Miss Molly
(b) Be-Bop-A-Lula
(c) Tutti Fruitti

10. Who is generally given credit for originating the term ''Rock And Roll''?
(a) Dick Clark
(b) Wolfman Jack
(c) Alan Freed

11. In 1957, he left the music business to become a preacher:
(a) Little Richard
(b) Frankie Lymon
(c) Tony Orlando

12. Paul Anka's ''Puppy Love'' is written to what star?
(a) Brenda Lee
(b) Connie Francis
(c) Annette Funicello

13. The Everly Brothers are
(a) Pete and Dick
(b) Don and Phil
(c) Bob and Bill

14. The Big Bopper's real name was:
(a) Jiles P. Richardson
(b) Roy Harold Scherer Jr.
(c) Marion Michael Morrison

15. In 1959, Berry Gordy, Jr., started a small record company called...
(a) Decca
(b) Cameo
(c) Motown

16. Edd Brynes had a hit with ''Kookie, Kookie, Lend Me Your Comb''. What TV show was he
(a) 77 Sunset Strip
(b) Hawaiian Eye
(c) Surfside Six

17. In 1960 Bobby Darin married:
(a) Carol Lynley
(b) Sandra Dee
(c) Natalie Wood

18. They were a one hit wonder with ''Book of Love'':
(a) The Penguins
(b) The Monotones
(c) The Moonglows

19. The Everly Brothers sang a song called ''Till I ______ You.''
(a) Loved
(b) Kissed
(c) Met

20. Chuck Berry sang ''Oh, ___________, why can't you be true?''
(a) Suzie Q
(b) Peggy Sue
(c) Maybelline

21. ''Wooly_______''
(a) Mammouth
(b) Bully
(c) Pully

22. ''I'm like a one-eyed cat ___________.”
(a) can't go into town no more
(b) sleepin' on a cold hard floor
(c) peepin' in a seafood store

23. ''Sometimes I wonder what I'm gonna do ___________.”
(a) cause there ain't no answer for a life without booze
(b) cause there ain't no cure for the summertime blues
(c) cause my car's gassed up and I'm ready to cruise

24. ''They often call me Speedo, but my real name is ___________.”
(a) Mr. Earl
(b) Jackie Pearl
(c) Milton Berle

25. ''You're my Fanny and nobody else's ___________.”
(a) girl
(b) but
(c) love

26. ''I want you to play with my ___________.”
(a) heart
(b) dreams
(c) ding a ling

27. ''Be Bop A Lula ___________.”
(a) she's got the rabies
(b) she's my baby.
(c) she loves me, maybe

28. ''Fine Love, Fine Kissing ___________.”
(a) right here
(b) fifty cents
(c) just for you

29. ''He wore black denim trousers and ___________.”
(a) a pink carnation
(b) pink leotards
(c) motorcycle boots

30. ''I got a gal named ___________.”
(a) Jenny Zamboni
(b) Gerri Mahoney
(c) Boney Maroney

* * * * * * * * * * * *
1 (c) The movie's over, its 4 o'clock
2. (b) Blackboard Jungle
3. (a) Angel
4. (c) Blueberry Hill
5. (a) Mr. Sandman
6. (c) Sun
7. (b) Charlie Brown
8. (a) Mac Heath
9. (c) Tutti Fruitti
10. (c) Alan Freed
11. (a) Little Richard
12. (c) Annette Funicello
13. (b) Don and Phil
14. (a) Jiles P. Richardson
15 (c) Motown
16. (a) 77 Sunset Strip
17. (b) Sandra Dee
18. (b) The Monotones
19. (b) Kissed
20. (c) Maybelline
21. (b) Bully
22. (c) peepin' in a seafood store
23. (b) cause there ain't no cure for the summertime blues
24. (a) Mr. Earl
25. (b) but
26. (c) ding a ling
27. (b) she's my baby
28. (a) right here
29. (c) motorcycle boots
30. (c) Boney Maroney

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Comic News


Goodness Gravy! It’s alive!! Again!!

During the 1980s, author Michael Vance and several well-known cartoonists produced a comic strip, “Holiday Out”, that was syndicated in more than one hundred newspapers, magazine, and fanzines during its peak. Three issues of “Holiday Out” were also published as a comic book by Renegade Press, but the complete run of the satiric comic strip has never been available…until today.

The first issue of “The Complete Holiday Out” has now been published by Main Enterprises.

"I'm excited to be publishing ‘The Complete Holiday Out’, and I thank Michael Vance for the opportunity to let people get a chance to see these rare treasures!" said Jim Main, publisher of Main Enterprises. “The team who produced the comic strip worked so well together in these satiric fantasies. I'm sure many will enjoy these collections of some of the most offbeat comic material ever seen! I'm certain it will do as well as the very successful ‘Forever Green’, which was previously published, .featuring a collection of "Holiday Out" strips and other material primarily drawn by Richard ‘Grass’ Green.”

The first issue of “The Complete Holiday Out” features two comic book stories written by Vance and drawn by legendary artist Richard “Grass” Green (a founder of comics fandom), and Chas Smith.

Vance is also known for his short stories set in the fictional town of Light’s End, Maine. The story drawn by Smith, “Where Bright Angel Feet Have Trod”, is the second Light’s End story ever written by Vance. In addition, it publishes a six page section of “Holiday Out” comic strips.

Vance has been published in dozens of regional magazines and as a syndicated columnist and cartoonist in over 500 newspapers. His book, “Forbidden Adventures”, has been called a "benchmark in comics history". He also has written the comic strip Alley Oop, and comic books including Straw Men, Angel of Death, The Adventures of Captain Nemo, and Bloodtide. His current novel, “Weird Horror Tales” is available from Cornerstone Book Publishers, bookstores, and on-line retailers like

“The Complete Holiday Out” #1 is the first of sixteen issues, each a digest-sized comic book. Main Enterprises also publishes Dark Corridor, a horror magazine, and other comic books and magazines. Copies are now available at

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Computer problems. Having to replace the dvd-rom and other minor clitches.

Here's one from Harriet to tide you over.

Antiques Bizarre
Barbara Allan
Kensington, Mar 2010, $22.00
ISBN: 9780758234216
Harriet Klausner

After a horrible winter, the residents of the Midwest town of Serenity are rejoicing that spring has arrived. Unfortunately though the temperatures rises, the warmer weather leads to melting of ice and snow further north and the Mississippi is overflowing its banks. Serenity is flooded and as the river overflows its’ banks and certain streets remain under water. Help the flood victims are septuagenarian Vivian Bourne and her thirtyish daughter Brandy who will host an auction at the Catholic Church.

They visit wealthy Madam Petrova to ask her to donate a Faberge egg although they expect a no from her. Instead she agrees to give them the last one commissioned by the Czar. Art expert Louis Martinette authenticated it decades ago and apparently wins the bidding with a million dollar offer. However, before the gavel comes down to end the bid, people fall to the floor ill. Both Madam Petrova and Louis Martinette are dead and the egg is missing. The cause of the sickness is the Mulligan stew made by Mrs. Mulligan, who commits suicide while Father O'Brien is stabbed to death. Vivian feels responsible as the deaths are related to her auction so with Brandy at her side; she investigates who the serial killing thief is

The latest Trash ‘N’ Treasures mystery (see Antiques Flee Market) is an amusing whodunit with less of the cute asides than the previous tales as the mother and daughter team get down to investigative business almost from the onset. Off her Prozac, surrogate pregnant Brandy struggles to keep her bi-polar mom in line during their inquiry, which Brandy’s boyfriend the police chief objects to their investigation for safety reasons.. Vivian is over the top with her interrogation methods while Brandy deals with morning sickness and her madcap mother’s mayhem.

Friday, February 19, 2010

More Interesting Reviews

Clean Kill
Jack Coughlin with Donald A. Davis
St. Martin’s, Mar 2010, $25.99
ISBN: 9780312551025

In Scotland, representatives from Saudi Arabia and Israel are finishing up negotiations on a peace treaty when two TOW missiles hit the castle. As soon as the missiles hit their target, Wahabi fundamentalists attack the progressive House of Saud.

As civil war breaks out, U.S. Army Gunnery Sergeant. Kyle Swanson and his squad work closely with the Saudi military to keep them from buckling or changing sides. The unit also is assigned to track down the perpetrators behind the Scottish attack and bring justice Saudi style to them. However, his assignment leaves him in conflict with the dreaded Muttaween Saudi religious police and terrorist Juba a former British sniper.

With a great opening premise of what happens to those seeking peace with Israel, the third Sniper thriller (see Kill Zone and Dead Shot) is an exhilarating action-packed over the top of Jabal Sawda, but will keep readers in anticipated suspense awaiting a confrontation between Swanson and Juba. The story line is faster than a speeding missile as fans will root for Kyle and company in what is a fun thriller.
Harriet Klausner

Apple Turnover Murder
Joanne Fluke
Kensington, Feb 23 2010, $24.00
ISBN: 9780758234896

In Lake Eden, Minnesota, Hannah Swensen’s business The Cookie Jar is booming with orders as June is busting out with weddings and other events. When Mayor Bascomb and his wife Stephanie order one thousand and one hundred apple turnovers to sell at the Lake Eden Combined Charities Drive, Hannah is elastic but wonders of there is time to make that amount in addition to their other orders. Her partner Lisa’s enthusiasm plus other bakers all chip in to fulfill the order.

The only real issue Hannah has with the gala is the emcee is community college professor Brad Ramsey; whom Hannah and her younger sister Michelle had relationships with at different times when the sisters were attending school. Ramsey has made a lot of enemies especially breaking the hearts of many coeds, but Hannah never expected someone to kill him when she finds his murdered body backstage holding a turnover. Hannah investigates hoping to identify the culprit without the police especially her other boyfriend deputy Mike Kingston, who leads the official inquiry, knowing that the Swensen siblings were part of Brad’s conquests. She is also worried about her second boyfriend Norman acting peculiarly and out of character, as he left home warm and loving but has come back to the nest cold and aloof

Although the Swenson brood seem to find murdered corpses all over Lake Eden (see Lemon Meringue Pie for instance)that should run them out of town as jinxes, fans will fully enjoy Apple Turnover Murder as this is probably the best baked amateur sleuth of the series. Hannah has two mysteries to solve; first the whodunit and second what is wrong with Norman. Thus the heroine is at her best as she works the homicide trying to conceal from the town knowing her and Michelle were on the professor of love’s hot list. Besides an entertaining mystery and a dozen recipes, readers will learn much more about how the heroine feels re her two beaus and a look at the family. Harriet Klausner

Shield of Duty
Scarlett Dean
Five Star, Feb 2010, $25.95
ISBN: 9781594148552

Southfield Heights, Indiana Police Detective Kate Frost is not looking forward to Crier reporter Ed “Egg” Nog tagging along when she comes back from her Wisconsin skiing vacation with friends at White Crest Mountain. However, the fun in the snow turns ugly when Kate and pals finds the torn apart corpse of one of them Evelyn Jakes. The cop knows Jakes had enemies, but not who would go so far as to slice her like this and place her dismembered body parts into plastic.

Kate and her partner police detective Gerard Alvarez investigate. At the same the spirit of Kate’s late sister Lindsay, a former cop, provides her sibling with otherworldly guidance that only Kate can hear; she also councils the newly departed like mobster Ricco DiCianni, who wants to hire Lindsay to solve his murder. However, even with this paranormal help, solving the Jakes case seems to be going nowhere.

This is a terrific often amusing paranormal whodunit with two police procedural subplots mostly handled by the sisters on different planes. The support cast is solid in support of the sibling cops with Lindsay telling much of the story from her otherworldly perspective. Fans will enjoy this entertaining mystery and seek the previous work when from beyond the late detective investigated the murder of Lindsay Frost (see Invisible Shield). Harriet Klausner

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A New One From Harriet

Shalador’s Lady
Anne Bishop
Roc, Mar 2010, $24.95
ISBN: 9780451463159

When she was Queen the first time, Cassidy of Bhad was too weak and plain so her retinue deserted her to join the stronger court of much prettier and more powerful Queen Kermilla. At the same she is dethroned, the deceitful Queens ignored the honorable Rules of the Blood and ruin Dena Nehele leading to revolt.

As the Rose-Jeweled Queen Cassidy expands her efforts to cleanse the entire realm and affirm she deserves being the ruler, Cassidy continues to grow in moral fiber, which enables her to grow in power to cleanse the land of the taint.

Fans of the long running Black Jewels saga will relish this terrific entry; newcomers need to at least read the previous entry The Shadow Queen to better understand the action-packed entry though perusing previous books would be even better as Anne Bishop paints a complex realm. Harriet Klausner

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Mythos Con Update

I received an email from my old friend Adam Niswander which briefly said

MythosCon is now just under eleven months away.
The website is at:

Check out the details and if you can make it, it sounds like an interesting convention for the lovers and writers of the fantastic and the works of Lovecraft.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Movie News

Here's some news I received from Indy Film Co-op. Looks like the old time B Movies are back and Jim Wynorski is leading the charge.

Monster Cruise, a Mid West family comedy, is wrapped.

(Franklin, Indiana, February 15th, 2010)

Genre legend Jim Wynorski has just finished shooting a scene in Franklin which supposedly is set in Lapland. Shay Baker and Erin Neufer were just driving across the frozen tundra, fearing that somehow they took a wrong turn on their way to Baltimore.Wynorski yells cut and the cast and crew scurry to find the nearest source of warmth.

Matt Borges, Art Director muttered, “ I miss Lake Monroe,” the location where the crew shot for 2 weeks during Indian summer in September.

Monster Cruise really has a three year old story, beginning when B Movie Celebration organizer Bill Dever invited Jim Wynorski to attend Franklin’s B Movie Celebration. “When I arrived, I was immediately struck with the idea that somehow Mayberry was teleported to Indiana,” says Wynorski. “Franklin was so beautiful that I knew one day I would make a movie here.”

Fast forward three years later. Wynorski and Dever had developed a strong friendship and had worked together on FIRE FROM BELOW, a Syfy movie of the week. Wynorski was instrumental in bringing the movie to Indiana and wanted to do something else together. “Joe Gaudin, my producing partner and I really wanted to make a movie celebrating summer in Indiana,” said Bill Dever. “I knew Jim was just aching to shoot something in Franklin so the time was right”

A script was hastily put together with long time collaborator Carl Salminen; locations were assembled in Franklin and Lake Monroe. Paul Wallace, Shay Baker, Kayla Gill and Erin Neufer, local actors from Indiana were cast in the leads. Veteran performers Gerry Pauwels from Bloomington, Vicky Richmond from Shelbyville, Jim Hardin and Bill Cothron from Louisville, and Stacey Dixon from Nashville brought depth and experience to this cast. Horror veteran Jim O’Rear and comedian Ervin Ross from Columbus fleshed out the cast.

So, on September 14th 2010, an earnest group of Indiana filmmakers and one of Hollywood’s most experienced directors set out to weave a tale that celebrated summer in the Mid West. Monster Cruise tells the story of a boy, a boat, and a sea monster.

“The film turned out far better that we hoped” says Wynorski. “I think movie goers are going to come away from Monster Cruise laughing, smiling, and wanting to visit Franklin, Indiana.”

It is anticipated that Monster Cruise will be released in September.


Snow, internet problems and personal commitments have had me offline. I still have some things to handle and will try to get back on schedule soon.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Willian Tenn, 1920-2010

William Tenn, whose real name was Philip Klass is gone. He was one of those writers in a small handful of satirists like Phil Dick. Sadly, as is the case these days, the majority of his work is out of print. Those lucky enough to have the late 60s releases, can gingerly look over the brittle brown pages and recapture the talents of a masterful, one of a kind writer.

The following is the obituary from The Pittsburg Post-Gazette.

During the "golden age" of American science fiction, the short stories of William Tenn were read as avidly as the works of Philip K. Dick, Robert Heinlein and Ray Bradbury.

The first Tenn story appeared in 1946, the dawning of sci-fi's literary sophistication. More than 200 followed, as well as two novels, most appearing in Galaxy magazine, but Tenn was a pen name.

The author's real name was Philip Klass, longtime English professor at Penn State University in State College who retired in 1989 after 23 years and moved to Mt. Lebanon.

Mr. Klass died Sunday at his home of congestive heart failure following a long illness, said his widow, Fruma. He was 89.

"He became a kind of father figure to the science-fiction community here," Mrs. Klass said. The couple moved here after his retirement because Mrs. Klass was employed by a Pittsburgh-area company.

Mr. Klass was active in promoting writing and internship programs at Penn State, said university spokesman Jeff Reston. Mr. Klass was given the Lindback All-University Award for Distinguished Teaching in 1976.

"He was hired on a one-year appointment and stayed for 23 years," said his widow. She said he was one of only three professors at Penn State without a college degree.

As a writer, "his forte was the carefully observed satirical short story," said Philip Smith, University of Pittsburgh English professor who has taught courses in science fiction for more than 30 years.

"Klass was the last of the greats, those writers like Dick and Bradbury who were responsible for legitimating science fiction from the 1940s to the 1950s," Mr. Smith said.

"As a kid, I found his short-story collections and thought they were the work of a really interesting writer. Klass, like Dick, used the science-fiction format to discuss contemporary social structures," he added. "Klass was interested in science fiction as social commentary, rather than science itself."

Mr. Klass' output as a writer slowed in the mid-1960s after he started his academic career, remembered David Hartwell, senior editor at Tor Books, a publisher of science-fiction titles.

"Oh, he would threaten every year to come up with a story or a novel, but never did," said Mr. Hartwell. "His entire writing career just stopped after he threw himself into his teaching."

Before heading to State College, Mr. Klass was well-known and socially connected in the New York community of writers and editors. "That was the center of his life," Mr. Hartwell said, adding that the writer was known for his sense of humor and his love of argument.

"His generation of writers would start to argue at the drop of a hat and go on for hours."

Mr. Klass was born in London and grew up in New York. He was a World War II veteran. He launched his writing career in 1946 with a story called "Alexander the Bait" that appeared in Astounding magazine, said Mrs. Klass.

"That was one of the major science-fiction magazines of its day," she said, adding that Mr. Klass had been using a variety of pen names on his submissions and settled on William Tenn after his first story was accepted.

Although he wrote the bulk of his stories in the 1950s, Mr. Klass was a favorite of genre fans in such collections as "Of All Possible Worlds," Mr. Hartwell said. He was also the editor of a popular anthology, "Children of Wonder." That book, released in 1950, contained science-fiction stories about children.

British novelist and critic Kingsley Amis was a supporter of American science fiction as it emerged after World War II. In his survey of the field, "New Maps of Hell," he cited Mr. Klass' work in the 1940s and '50s for its importance, said Mr. Hartwell.

In 1968, Ballantine Books released seven titles by Mr. Klass -- two novels, "Of Men and Monsters" and "A Lamp for Medusa," along with five short-story collections. Starting in 2001, the New England Science Fiction Association began republishing his short stories, as well as Mr. Klass' nonfiction work, including memoirs in the book, "Dancing Naked."

In 2006, a stage version of his short story, "Winthrop Was Stubborn," was performed at the Three Rivers Arts Festival.

Mr. Klass is survived by his widow and a daughter, Adina.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Need Something to Read? Try These

More from Harriet. I'm working on tax returns and books. I'll have something soon.

Katie MacAlister
Signet, Feb 2010, $7.99
ISBN: 9780451229311

Computer research technician Jack Fletcher is experimenting with a nanoelectromechanical system in his lab. His sister Hallie, who sold him at a charity auction, accidentally moves the switches while spilling liquid helium on the connections, causing an explosion that burns the circuits and more. The boom also sends the siblings to another world; that of his favorite story Airship Pirates; a Victorian realm using steam power as the primary source of energy. .

Aerocorps Captain Octavia Pye is on her maiden voyage on HIMA (His Imperial Majesty’s Airship) Tesla. However, she is shock to find two stowaways on her ship. Jack and Hallie tell her their story, but she thinks they are either insane or spies for the Black Hand Rebels or one of the European enemies as the Empire is on the brink of revolt. She also thinks the hunk is cute while he knows she is the woman he always wanted.

Steamed is an entertaining wacky steampunk romantic fantasy filled with humor as the computer guru with fantasies of being Indiana Jones lands in the adventure of a lifetime with the woman of his dreams. The story line is fast-paced from the moment Hallie sends them into this other realm and never slows down as Jack thrives to become a one-eyed patched first mate to the captain who has a few secrets of her own. Harriet Klausner

Harlan Coben
Dutton, Mar 23 2010, $27.95
ISBN: 9780525951582

National TV investigative reporter Wendy Tynes exposes sexual predators on her show Caught in the Act. When a seventeen years old lacrosse playing high school student Haley McWaid vanishes without a trace, her hometown is stunned. Three months later, they remain shocked as the good girl never came home and there is no word about her.

Wendy investigates the case and finds evidence that links the missing teen to social worker Dan Mercer. She exposes him on national TV as a sexual predator of children, but soon begins to find discrepancies in the slam dunk evidence. When a father of another teen victim claims to have killed Dan in what is vigilante justice, Wendy wonders what she has wrought as she now reconsiders her instincts though too late as he is caught dead.

This will hook readers from start to finish with terrific twists throughout as Harlan Coben provides a great thriller. The story line is fast-paced and never stops for a moment; yet is also filled with deep characterizations especially the accused and his accuser. Fans will relish this powerful tale of justice is not blind when the media gets involved. Harriet Klausner

Deep Shadow
Randy Wayne White
Putnam, Mar 2010, $25.95
ISBN: 9780399156267

During a robbery, ex-cons, King and Perry kill a family of five. They flee from a massive manhunt hiding in the swamps of Central Florida. Their plan is to wait till the heat cools down a little though both know that will be some time as the media has stirred the public and the police.

Doc Ford and his three friends (Tomlinson, Will, and Arlis) go to a small lake in search of the late Cuban dictator Batista’s treasure plane, which vanished in 1958. However King and Perry capture Doc and company; and force them to keep diving in search of the plane. None are aware of what lurks in the nearby swamps.

Readers will knows the swamp is far from Dead Silent between Doc and his buddies, the two deadly thugs, and a Swamp Thing that wants to dine on divers. Fast-paced throughout the exciting story line, fans will be hooked from the moment everyone converges and readers will never stop reading as the tension mounts with anticipation of one hell of a climax. Who, if any of the four buddies, will leave Central Florida alive? Harriet Klausner

Three from Harriet

C.L. Talmadge
Healing Stone Books, 2008, $16.95
ISBN: 9780980053746

On Azgard, Lord James Mordecai recognizes adult physician Helen Andros as his daughter from a liaison with Miriam Andros (see Vision). However, their union is not harmonious as each brings a different past to the father daughter relationship. He demands offspring loyalty and she wants much more from him.

Meanwhile Exalted Lord Toltec King has healed from his debilitating drug induced coma and is interested in Helen's skills as a natural healer and as a surgeon as she brought him back to the living. He orders her to marry her second cousin Lord Justin Atlas. She now knows the Green Stone she wears enhances her medical abilities, but is unsure why. However, she is worried about what will happen to her father, who stands trial for seditious acts. At the same time Justin’s father Prince Enoch Atlas believes he is finding the secrets of the priests of the Temple of Kronos in the use of life and death kura energy, which if successful will further his ambition.

The second Green Stone of healing tale is a terrific fantasy starring a large cast held strongly together by the confused heroine. The story line is fast-paced throughout and never slows although much goes on in several subplots. Enoch is a great villain with plans to raise himself and his House to the Exalted Lord level as C.L. Talmadge continues to expand on her deep political fantasy that requires the audience to read the first tale in what is so far a great saga. Harriet Klausner

The Poison Throne
Celine Kiernan
Orbit, Apr 7 2010, $14.99
ISBN: 9780316077064

Dying Lorcan Moorehawke returns from the Northland after a five year mission accompanied by his fifteen year old daughter Wynter to their former home Kingcourt, but are not welcomed as befits the Protector should be. That is they feel unwelcome until Victuallor Heron greets them warmly.

Wynter is stunned with changes at Kingcourt as everyone fears the king with good cause as he has turned brutal. His heir Alberon was forced to flee for his life and his other son Alberon's half-brother Razi sits uncomfortably on the regal Chair that belongs to his sibling while trying to remain loyal to his older brother and his sire; not an easy task. Razi welcomes home his childhood friend Wynter at a time rebellion and civil war seems imminent with the kingdom split in two between loyalists to a mad monarch and rebels. Wynter will soon find herself caught in the crosshairs of this division between her father loyal to the king and Razi and his cohort Christopher Garron considering the overthrow of the monarch.

This is a superb young adult political fantasy filled with plenty of intrigue as everyone at Kingcourt is impacted by the ruler’s apparent insanity. The story line fast-paced, but loaded with a strong cast who brings out the depth of life in a dictatorial deadly monarchy. Young teen readers will relish the courageous escapades of the heroine who must choose between her father and her kingdom. Harriet Klausner

Full Moon City
Darrell Schweitzer and Martin H. Greenberg (Editors)
Gallery (Pocket), Mar 9 2010, $15.00
ISBN: 9781416584131

Full Moon City contains fourteen dark werewolf and one leaning more towards vampire (Darrell Schweitzer’s “Kvetchula’s Daughter”) urban fantasies written by some of the genre’s most renowned authors. None are clinkers, but only a few can be considered as super. For the most part the environs are places not anticipated in werewolf tales such as the Plaza Hotel in Esther M. Friesner’s where “No Children, No Pets” prevail but six years old Emmeline lives next door in Central Park; at Houston Community College where the Lycanthropy Support Group meets in “The Truth About Werewolves” by Lisa Tuttle and Carrie Vaughn’s Kitty returns to Vegas in “Kitty learns the Ropes”. More typical locales are used too but less frequently like in Ian Watson’s “The Weredog of Bucharest”; the Bayou is the setting for Peter S. Beagle’s “La Lune D’Attend” and Hollywood in “I Was a Middle Aged Werewolf” by Ron Goulart. In my opinion the best contribution is Holly Black's “The Aarne-Thompson Classification Revue” as the werewolf actress looks deeply at conversion. Overall this is a very good collection worth reading only by fans of the modern take on the werewolf mythos. Harriet Klausner

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Horror Anthology Review

Here's a new review from me. Be sure and check out the website as well.

AND NOW THE NIGHTMARE BEGINS: The Horror Zine, Volume One, edited by Jeani Rector, BearManor Media, $16.95, 256 pages, ISBN: 9781593933562, reviewed by Barry Hunter.

This is a collection of stories, poems, and illustrations that have appeared online at This volume is a perfect way to catch up on the stories that you have missed or will be an excellent introduction to the talent that is appearing there. It’s a well put together volume with the stories grouped together at the beginning and the poetry grouped by author in its own section.

The stories are interesting and are somewhat surprising in getting their point across to the reader. “Folks Don’t Always Come out of Ratwitch Cave the Same” by Lawrence Baker opens the volume with a tale of revenge. “I’m Coming to Get You” by Jason D. Brawn is about a twisted deal with the devil. A man with “supernatural abilities” finds out what his gift really is when he finds “The Dead Wall” by David Byron. Connor de Bruler has a cautionary tale about a new milk product marketed to women in “Venus”. Other tales are looks at the boogey man, the rattling man, Halloween lights, and a dreamcatcher.

The poetry varies between types; length and subject matter, but is at home in this anthology. Vampires, a succubus, zombies, dreams and other topics are the fodder for the writings chosen to be presented here.

Check out the website and see some of the current offerings and pick up this volume to see what you have been missing. There aren’t many places for horror stories to find a home these days. This is place for them, but don’t plan on getting too cozy.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Goings On

Sorry about no post yesterday.

Spent the morning at the Doctors Office with Kathy and then part of the afternoon at the Veterans Administration Office filing some new paperwork.

Spent the rest of the afternoon hanging pictures and rearranging Kathy's office at work. Ever since the last move her walls have been bare. We took care of that and it looks a million times better.

I did have time to finish the book I was reading. I'll try to get the review done this weekend and get it posted.

Also finished a story and sent it to my editor to see if it will make the Spring Mystery anthology or if she will hold it for Halloween. It could go either way.

More later. Hope everyone is well.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Safety Notice

Whether or not you have a TOYOTA or another brand not affected by a re-call, if your car speeds up and you are unable to brake or slow down, this is what you need to do.

DO NOT turn the engine off. When you do this, all of the power systems shut down - power brakes, power steering and all electrical systems.

DO put the car in NEUTRAL and do what you can to get to the side of the road. When you are safely out of traffic, then you can turn your engine off.

Its better to burn out an engine or computer than to have a wreck and be seriously hurt or worse.

Baryon 114

Baryon 114 is up at the website. Go to to see a ton of reviews from Harriet and myself. Many of these have not been posted on the blog. Let me know what you think or ANY COMMENTS TO THE-BARYON-REVIEW@BELLSOUTH.NET

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Demons, Zombies and Archangels

More reviews of the unusual by Harriet

Accidentally Demonic
Dakota Cassidy
Berkley, Feb 2010, $14.00
ISBN: 9780425232286

Public relations specialist Casey Schwartz wakes up behind bars, but cannot recall getting arrested. She calls her big sister Wanda (see the Accidental Werewolf) to bail her out. Casey not only fails to remember beating up a cop, which led to her arrest, the normally mild mannered woman cannot understand her sudden short fuse and incredible strength.

Vampire Clayton Gunnersson arrives knowing why Casey has radically changed. In a bar someone accidentally dropped demon blood on her and she is changing into the genetic clone of Clay’s demonic mate Hildegard. Casey is attracted to Clay, which if her “twin” finds out will make turning into a demon seem gentle and sweet.

This is a laugh out loud romantic fantasy as fans of the Accidental saga (See Accidental Human and Accidentally Dead) will understand the mantra may the Schwartz be with us. The story line is a breezy lighthearted frolic as a werewolf or vampire bite pale compared to being demonized. Zany throughout, fans of madcap paranormal tales will enjoy the meek will inherit the earth; if they live long enough. Harriet Klausner

Archangel’s Kiss
Nalini Singh
Berkley, Feb 2010, $7.99
ISBN: 9780425233368

Elena Deveraux wakes up to see an odd alien city with angels in the sky. Archangel of New York Raphael fell in love with the human hunter and changed her into an immortal. After being in a coma for a year, she has been awake for three days. They argue over their relationship as he insists he is he master and she says they are equals. He says she must fly or die in the next two months as they have been invited to a ball by the oldest archangel Lijuan that they cannot afford to miss gong. Lijuan considers the hunter as Raphael’s pet and the other living members of the Cadre of ten want to test her power too after what she did to one of them in New York and her being the first made human in millennia.

Raphael and Elena while flying over Refuge see a body near where Raphael’s land touches that of Elijah. Loyal vampire Noel was battered and left to die with a warning to Elena as a Hunter Gild weapon was buried inside the severely injured man’s chest. The trail is cold. Raphael wants to kill the violator who harmed Noel but needs proof as he knows the games to test him and his soulmate have begun and the danger increases with deaths and torture.

Although the terrific Archangel’s Kiss is a direct sequel to Angels’ Blood readers will have some problems during the first few chapters catching up with the back-story unless you read the previous tale recently. However, that will pass quickly as the exciting story line grips the audience while taking place entirely on the Archangel plane. The mystery is deftly handled as is the relationship between the archangel and the hunter he made while the strong support cast contains distinct different personalities. Fans will relish this engaging romantic fantasy as everything converges at Lijuan’s ball. Harriet Klausner

Battle of the Network Zombies
Mark Henry
Kensington, Mar 2010, $15.00
ISBN: 9780758225269

Not all zombies are disgusting creatures as depicted in the Night of the Living Dead saga. Take Seattle's Amanda Feral for instance; she is beautiful using makeup to cover rot like hiding acne, but when a part gets too nasty she can turn to the reapers who for an exorbitant fee (will health care reform cover this) will fix the blemish. Since her ad agency tanked thanks to a client who created a product that flopped once the public knew what is made of, Amada’s “agent” Wendy KlarKaroff arranged a meeting with the despicable wood nymph Johnny Birch for some needed publicity by appearing on his reality TV show.

Johnny’s new show "Minions Mansion" is overloaded with “guests” who hate him. When someone threatens him, he plans two hire a body guard from one of the contestants on his show. Amanda becomes a judge on Minions Mansion and is one of the first people to find his corpse inside his locked safe. Many of the crew including the judges had strong motives to incinerate Johnny, but Amanda fears the killer will strike again; yet her warning is ignored as everyone assumes Johnny deserved to die and prefer Happy Hour of the Damned.

Somewhat chick-lit comedy, Amanda’s latest urban fantasy amateur sleuth (see Road Trip of the Living Dead) is a unique reading experience as Mark Henry gives the zombie treatment to reality TV. Amanda is perfect for pulling off the satire with her sidebar commentary about life as a zombie diva which is expensive because image is everything and she must have expensive make-up and a classy wardrobe and she hope the publicity of being a judge will get her some clients for her ad agency. Fans will enjoy this refreshingly something different as Amanda judges the undead as deadly, but her philosophy is to die with your makeup on. The audience will like the switch from a reality show to a mystery who-done-it which Amanda hopes to solve. Harriet Klausner

Werewolves, Vampires and Star Wars

Three more from Harriet about werewolves, vampires and Star Wars. Seems like these characters are still extremely popular. The Star Wars titles continually make it to the best seller list. There are bunches of books about vampires and werewolves out there to choose from. THE WEREWOLF is due out in the theatres soon, so the film franchise may be revived. We'll just have to wait and see.

Red Wolf
Linda Thomas-Sundstrom
Silhouette Nocturne, Feb 2010, $5.25
ISBN: 9780373618286

In Miami Tory McKidd stalks the park where her brother Mark’s body was found six months ago as she obsessively seeks to bring justice to his murderer; were-style. Night after night she impatiently waits while dreaming of torturing the culprit like her sibling received from a rogue shifter, but no clue surfaces though she knows a werewolf pack is near.

Miami Police Detective Adam Scott investigates the park homicide and is following leads to the culprit. When he meets the amateur sleuth sister of the victim, they are instantly attracted to one another as she knows he is her mate. However, she also realizes the killer of her brother targets her soulmate for death.

This is an action-packed romantic urban fantasy in which from the onset, when Tory stalks Miami while Adam wonders who the mystery woman is and why she walks with purpose at night in dangerous areas, grips the reader to know whodunit. Fast-paced with an engaging lead couple though the plot is a bit thin, fans will enjoy this pleasant paranormal police procedural. Harriet Klausner

Star Wars Imperial Commando #1: 501st
Karen Traviss
Del Rey, Oct 2009, $7.99
ISBN: 9780345511133

The Clone Wars may have ended (see Star Wars Republic Commando quartet), but hostilities remain as the new Empire that emerged from the conflict presses the offense against the remnants of the Republic and the elimination of the surviving Jedi. Former allies face each other in combat as Republic Commandos are either in support of or opposed to the Empire. Many fled to Mandalore to join the resistance led by Kal Skirata, but Delta and Omega units converted into the Imperial Commando killing force under Vader’s leadership with the mission to hunt and kill Jedi and Commando clone deserters.

On Mandalore, the Republic Commando clone deserters, mercenaries, and natives distrust the fugitive Jedi who they blame for the catastrophe. Especially angry at the Jedi are the Commandos who know they will soon be fighting their brothers at arms. However, although they loathe the Jedi, they know they must set aside their hatred because the Imperial Empire is coming to eradicate all of them.

To fully grasp what is going on, the reader needs to have read the four book Republic Commando series first; especially the last tale Order 66. The story line is a transition plot that sets up the changes in the galaxy with the Clone wars being over. No one stands out though Darmen the former Republic Commando is perhaps the most representative as he has no time to grieve and must choose which band of brothers he will fight alongside of against his former band of brothers. Fans of the saga will enjoy Karen Traviss’ exciting entry, but newcomers will be lost in that far away galaxy. Harriet Klausner

Real Vampires Hate Their Thighs
Gerry Bartlett
Berkley, Feb 2010, $14.00
ISBN: 9780425232231

In Hollywood Glory St. Clair loves the nightlife especially hitting the bloody in spots with boyfriend, Jeremy Blade aka Jeremiah Campbell. When she meets Ian MacDonald, he swears he can help her meet her forever fantasy goal of losing weight. Being a vampire she assumes she cannot change her body type, but his diet works.

However, Jeremiah’s clan has been blood feuding with the MacDonald brood for eternity. Glory has side affects from her diet like suffering nightmares that are even more shocking as she has not had a dream in four centuries. She protects Ian from Jeremiah and his kin as the loss of weight makes him her hero. Besides he is also working on another drug solution to enable vampires to remain awake in daytime.

Still obsessed over her waistline, Glory rejects the notion that Real Vampires Don’t Diet when she accepts help from a MacDonald, which angers her boyfriend’s clan as the feud has been on going for centuries. Lighthearted with an underlying message to diet healthily, fans of the series will enjoy this pleasant read as the lead character tries pharmaceuticals to lose the weight. Harriet Klausner

Monday, February 1, 2010

Some Good Reads on a Cold Day

If you need to curl up in front of a warm fire, here are some good reads to keep you company.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms
N.K. Jemisin
Orbit, Feb 25 2010, $13.99
ISBN: 9780316043915

Barbaric warrior Baroness Yeine Darr lives in the Northern Kingdom of Darr. When her mother dies mysteriously, she has no time to grieve or investigate. Instead she is “invited” to come to the center of the universe by the Emperor of the Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by her grandfather the Dekarta Arameri ruler of all. In the capital city of Sky, a bewildered Yeine learns her grandfather the ruler names her his third heir along with her cousins once removed twins Lady Scimina and Lord Relad.

Confused and bewildered over her selection to the competition to replace the aging Dekarta, Yeine soon realizes her role at court is to be an expendable pawn used by her cousins as each has ambitions to be the next ruler. However, she also learns more about her family’s history and the gods serving them; losers in the Gods War eons ago who humiliatingly must bow to the mortals as their retribution for the crime of defeat. She proves to have backbone though all at court thought she would and intelligence that none thought she had while trying to save the kingdoms and free the god-slaves.

The first tale of the Inheritance Trilogy is a fascinating adaptation fantasy told through the filter of the heroine who uses her experiences as a chieftain and lessons from her late mother to understand the glamorous cesspool she has been tossed into. Yeine is a terrific lead protagonist who keeps the deep story line focused whether she deals with her grandfather, her amoral rivals, the slave-gods especially Nahadoth. Although the engaging story line is simplified too much between the forces of good and bad, readers will enjoy the opening account of a fully developed convoluted world in which debts of the soul are paid by losing your rights as Nahadoth the Nightlord One of the Three and now Yeine know the difference between the slave and the princess. Harriet Klausner

Prince of Storms
Kay Kenyon
PYR, Jan 26 2010, $26.00
ISBN: 9781591027911

Titus Quinn of Earth from the Rose universe claims to be the Regent of the parallel universe Entire. He pledges to turn over control to his daughter Sen Ni, but procrastinates as he distrusts his estranged offspring especially since she has linked her destiny with Geng De the psychic. Quinn fears if he gives up the throne, the technologically advanced Entire will destroy his homeworld as part of the extinction of the Rose as his daughter has already proclaimed doing in order to save the failing Entire.

He is not a fool as he knows his control is shaky as the enemy resides near him enough to harass him, and the Tarig overlords remain hostile and evil with plans to overthrow his Ascendancy and devastate the Rose (see City Without End).just like his daughter will do to save their realm. However, it is the plotting of the navitar especially one who can alter the future that frightens him. His only hope is a pact with the opponents of the Long War, the Jinda ceb Horat who have Quinn's wife Anzi as a willing remorseful pawn. Still Quinn knows the real fight is with the navitar who forces the beleaguered earth champion to choose the fate of billions in two universes as a master plan of devious design unfolds.

This is an exhilarating finish to a great saga as The Entire and the Rose not just wraps up major threads, but keeps the audience thinking about life and death choices on a macro and micro level. The story line is fast-paced yet filled with memorable characters struggling to do what each believes is right; knowing whatever is selected dooms many. Fans will appreciate this strong entry to powerful quartet as Kay Kenyon makes it clear how difficult on a personal level it is to decide who will live and who will die when one faces a face. Harriet Klausner

The Hellhound King
Lori Devoti
Silhouette Nocturne, Feb 2010, $5.25
ISBN: 9780373618293

Half-elf, half-witch Marina Adal does not want to return to her home realm Alfheim because she knows her uncle will take away her freedom and besides in Gunngar everyone hates her including Amma the witch she freed from a needle trap who now resides trapped inside her. She assumes even her former lover loathes her though she believes he betrayed her. Thus the Fairy princess works as a chambermaid while concealing her background.

However her former lover Raf Dolg the hellhound arrives to take her back to her uncle. The Svartalfar dark elves also want to capture the princess. In Alfheim, Raf tries to keep her safe, uncover who wants her dead and why, and who murdered his family.

This is an exhilarating romantic fantasy that grips the audience from the opening scene when Raf arrives to collect his bounty on the treacherous elf who he believes deceived him. The cast is solid and intrigue re the throne is superb especially with a terrific ironic twist. Lori Devoti provides a strong “fairy” tale in which love may not be enough to even keep the hellhound and the elf alive. Harriet Klausner