Author Archives: Barbara Howe

The City We Became

The City We Became, the first book in N. K. Jemisin’s Great Cities series, is a love letter to New York City, in all its exuberant, chaotic, contradictory glory. And to city life in general. The idea here is that … Continue reading

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The Collapsing Empire

Without faster-than-light transportation, is interstellar travel possible? In The Collapsing Empire, the first book in the Interdependency series, author John Scalzi imagines a strange phenomenon called “The Flow”, unknown to our current physics. Using normal rocket propulsion to reach a … Continue reading

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Book Announcement: The Forge

The Forge, the fifth and final book in the Reforging series, is scheduled to be released on 3 December. I’ve just seen the cover art, and it’s gorgeous: The artist, Catherine Archer-Wills, has done a fantastic job with all five … Continue reading

Posted in A Writer's Life, Epic Fantasy | Leave a comment

The Stranger House

Young Australian mathematician Sam (Samantha) Flood comes to the small Cumbrian village of Illthwaite looking for information about her grandmother, also known as Sam Flood. The older Sam emigrated from the U.K. in 1960 and died in childbirth only a … Continue reading

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My Brother Michael

Nothing ever happens to me. That is the opening line of My Brother Michael. A young Englishwoman—the narrator, Camilla Haven, on holiday in Greece—is sitting in a cafe in Athens, writing a letter back home, and feeling a bit sorry … Continue reading

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Witchy Fiction

Does a collection of optimistic, easy-to-read fantasy novellas sound appealing? Especially if they include a bit of romance? Then check out the books at WitchyFiction.com. This brand is the brainchild of a group of New Zealand writers who began these stories … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary Romance, Fantasy, Kiwi author | Leave a comment

The Bookman’s Tale

When grieving widower Peter Byerly pulls an old book off a shelf in a secondhand bookstore, he discovers a loose sheet of paper, four inches square, tucked into its pages. He turns the paper over, and nearly collapses in the … Continue reading

Posted in Historical Fiction, Mysteries | Leave a comment

A Life Well Lived

My father, Lamar Howe, died on 17 May. I’m writing this on Saturday morning, a week after the funeral, at the time when we would have been having our regular video chat. It hurts to know I’ll never be able … Continue reading

Posted in A Writer's Life | 21 Comments

A Few Short Reviews

The Stone Wētā by Octavia Cade is a timely and rather chilling take on the repression of scientific data by climate deniers and corporate/political interests. It reads a bit like a World War II spy story, with the scientists acting … Continue reading

Posted in Climate fiction, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Kiwi author | Leave a comment

Ghost Bus: Tales from Wellington’s Dark Side

The stories in this small collection (eight entries) made me smile. Some even made me laugh. Not bad for a collection titled Ghost Bus: Tales from Wellington’s Dark Side. I’m generally not a fan of either horror or grim dark … Continue reading

Posted in Speculative fiction | Leave a comment