Cory Doctorow's short story collection Overclocked was nominated this year for a Locus Award, a science fiction honor voted on by the public and tabulated by Locus magazine. Votes were accepted online, and several links during the balloting on Doctorow's ginormously popular Boing Boing blog helped his book receive the most votes in that category. But if you check out the award winners, you won't find Doctorow's book on the list. Locus changed the rules after voting was over, deciding to give votes from its ... read more

Today's the last day to vote on the 2008 Hugo Awards, which will be given out at the World Science Fiction Convention next month in Denver. I joined the convention as a supporting member last fall to vote for the first time on the awards, which began in 1955 and have become the most coveted prize in science fiction. In April, the Hugo nominees were announced. All of the nominees in several categories can be read for free online, including short stories, novellas, novelettes and fanzines. Four of the five best ... read more

Robin D. Laws has a great take on Scott McClellan's tell-all book: Even in the depths of his tenure as Bush press secretary, Scott McClellan always seemed to me like the most likely administration official to write a scathing tell-all. His divided consciousness was always visible as a series of tells that would have led him to the slaughter at any poker table. McClellan's deer-meets-headlights demeanor at tough press conferences signaled a lack of belief in his own statements—a fear that he might be caught out. ... read more

I'm currently reading What Happened, former White House press secretary Scott McClellan's 323-page stab in the back to the Bush administration. The book wasn't supposed to be out until June 1, but the publisher lifted the embargo yesterday and I grabbed a copy at Barnes & Noble. Current and former Bush administration officials are playing dumb on McClellan's motive for writing the book, but he makes it crystal clear in the preface: Valerie Plame leakers in the White House used him to pass along lies to hide the ... read more

While in college in the late '80s I freelanced for Amazing Heroes, a comics magazine that paid slightly more than the postage required to mail the checks. I was part of a reviewing stable that included Adam-Troy Castro, a writer with a misplaced hyphen who recently wrote Emissaries from the Dead, his first science fiction novel set in a world of his own making. Emissaries, which is subtitled "An Andrea Cort Novel," carries forward a protagonist and setting from his short stories. The world's wonderfully bizarre, ... read more

To get into the spirit of Pulp Guns, a game product I'm testing, I went looking for current crime novels that could've been pulps -- hard-boiled stories of murder and mayhem set in the '30s and '40s. I came pretty close in A World of Thieves, a 2002 novel by James Carlos Blake that follows a family of armed robbers across Louisiana and Texas in 1928. Blake's novel tells the tale of Sonny LaSalle, an 18-year-old amateur boxer from New Orleans who graduates with top grades and should know better than to join uncles ... read more

There's been considerable debate in blogs I read over Schulz and Peanuts, a biography of Charles Schulz written by David Michealis. Roleplaying game developer Robin Laws reviews the book: Schulz and Peanuts, by David Michaelis, is a completely absorbing, stunningly researched, pain-scorched biography of the last century’s most influential cartoonist. Charles Schulz's genius was built on traits common to great artists: unstinting discipline, narrowness of focus, solipsism, arrogance, self-doubt, independence, ... read more