Short Fiction from Craig Russell

SF Canada member Craig Russell’s most recent short story appears in the Parallel Prairies anthology which is published under the Enfield & Wizenty imprint of Great Plains Publications Ltd. (edited by Darren Ridgley and Adam Petrash).

The Canadian prairie teems with life – not all of it of this world. The nineteen stories in Parallel Prairies allow the reader to get acquainted with baby dragons, killer insects, faery kings, infernal entities and more.

During the launch in October at the Brandon University library, Craig Russell spoke with a Brandon Sun reporter, commenting: “I think the landscape really does influence how you think about your writing.” His story is about a woman who grew up in Brandon, but goes to the University of Manitoba to complete the degree she started as a young woman. She encounters a mysterious document in the University of Manitoba library. “It leads her on an unexpected adventure into the Northern Canadian shield where her courage and her sanity is tested by something from another world,” Russell said.

Praise for Parallel Prairies:

“…a kaleidoscope of style and subject matter. Echoes of iconic storylines pulled from the annals of cult sci-fi, fantasy and suspense ring through Manitoba’s landscape.” — The Uniter

“So much fun! I’m loving this book … the stories take place in Manitoba, but they transcend.” — Joanne Kelly, CBC Manitoba

Craig Russell’s first novel, Black Bottle Man, won the 2011 American Moonbeam Award gold medal for Young Adult Fantasy. It was a finalist for the Prix Aurora Award for Best English Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel, as well as for two Manitoba Book Awards in the same year. His second novel, Fragment, was published by Thistledown Press in Oct. 2016. He’s a lawyer, supervising the land titles system in southwestern Manitoba. He lives in Brandon with his wife, where they’re restoring their 1906 Victorian heritage home.

Parallel Prairies can be purchased through Great Plains, McNally Robinson, Chapters, and Amazon.

Death Flight launched!

SF Canada member Melissa Yi’s latest Hope Sze crime Novel, Death Flight, is now available.

When Dr. Hope Sze flies to Los Angeles to reunite with her soul mate, she expects Botoxed blondes with Brazilian wax jobs, not terror at 35,000 feet in the air.

Yet on their way home, with 1000 miles to go and nowhere to land, she and Dr. John Tucker must strive to save one man’s life.

Hope and Tucker have no surgical equipment. No surgeon on board. And, as first year family medicine residents, almost no experience.

But right this second, they’ll try anything.

Especially Hope, because minutes before, she might have accidentally helped to kill the man spasming at her feet.

Find out where to get this exciting novel, and others, at Melissa’s blog.

New Release, Children of the Bloodlands

The second book in SF Canada member Samantha Beiko’s YA series The Realms of Ancient, Children of the Bloodlands, is now available through ECW Press, as well as wherever books are sold.

Three months after the battle of Zabor, the five friends that came together to defeat her have been separated. Burdened with the Calamity Stone she acquired in Scion of the Fox, Roan has gone to Scotland to retrace her grandmother’s steps in an attempt to stop further evil from entering the world.

Meanwhile, a wicked monster called Seela has risen from the ashy Bloodlands and is wreaking havoc on the world while children in Edinburgh are afflicted by a strange plague; Eli travels to Seoul to face judgment and is nearly murdered; Natti endures a taxing journey with two polar bears; Phae tries desperately to obtain the key to the Underworld; and Barton joins a Family-wide coalition as the last defense against an enemy that will stop at nothing to undo Ancient’s influence on Earth — before there is no longer an Earth to fight for.

Darkness, death, and the ancient powers that shape the world will collide as our heroes discover that some children collapse under their dark inheritance, and those who don’t are haunted by blood.

“The rewardingly complex mythology is deepened through parallel humanizing themes in the protagonists’ storylines, while game-changing action sequences unleash real consequences in the highly diverse world. A densely-packed, well-crafted sequel that will leave readers eager for the trilogy’s finale.” — Kirkus Reviews

For more information, and a list of cities in Samantha’s book tour this fall, visit her blog.

Happy Birthday, Dave Duncan!

The SF Canada board and membership would like to take a moment today to wish the happiest of birthdays to our own Dave Duncan. A little dragon told us that Dave turns 85 today and is just completing a new book. Just another way Dave is an inspiration to us all. 🙂

“The Call of the Wold” in Glass and Gardens

SF Canada member Holly Schofield‘s story, “The Call of the Wold,” appears in the just-released Glass and Gardens: Solarpunk Summers anthology, published by World Weaver Press, edited by Sarena Ulibarri.

As the introduction says, “Solarpunk is a type of optimistic science fiction that imagines a future founded on renewable energies. The seventeen stories in this volume are not boring utopias—they grapple with real issues such as the future and ethics of our food sources, the connection or disconnection between technology and nature, and the interpersonal conflicts that arise no matter how peaceful the world is.”

Tangent Online says that Holly’s story is “told in a lightly humorous style with a great deal of wordplay…an enjoyable story with an appealing main character.” Publishers Weekly says “this anthology is a welcome relief from dystopias and postapocalyptic wastelands, and a reassurance that the future need not be relentlessly bleak” and called Holly’s story “thoughtful, even radical.”

Links to purchase the anthology, and links to Holly’s other stories, can be found on Holly’s website

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New Novella from Ursula Pflug, “Down From”

SF Canada member Ursula Pflug has recently released a new novella, the portal fantasy “Down From,” with UK-based small press Snuggly Books.

On nice days the witch Sandrine, a wife and mother of two (or is it three?) canoes along The Stream of Consciousness to the outskirts of town where her friend Vienna lives on the edge of a swamp. At Hartwood portals litter the paths, big as dinner plates, but only if you have an eye for that sort of thing. Sometimes Vienna, who does, outlines them in circles of wildflowers or pastel chalk, to alert the unwary who might otherwise be whisked away. Instead, Vienna tells her, Sandrine should explore the disused upstairs bedrooms, haunted not by the ghosts of former inhabitants but by alternate worlds, one behind each of many brightly painted doors.

What kind of world is behind each door? How to pick? Behind Pomme Verte, the door she finally tries, Sandrine meets a tall young man with red hair, who may be a son she didn’t know she had. Is it possible that in the other worlds one has children who are searching for their biological mothers–just as if they had been adopted by a human and not, as it were, by another world? Only one way to find out.

Publishers Weekly says:

“Pflug’s haunting novella is as oblique and slippery as its protagonist, Sandrine, a traveler between worlds who is first encountered returning from “astral adventures” that have left her disoriented and uncertain: her husband may be named Randy, Mike, or River, and she has either two or three children. (“Don’t forget you have a girl,” she reminds herself; “girls don’t like that, not at all.”) Sandrine worries about environmental damage and the politics of food, tries to recenter herself with her family, and confronts the unexpected ways in which the secrets and struggles of her best friend, Vienna, intersect with Sandrine’s own. Pflug’s prose is deceptively direct: much is stated but still more is hinted at in a setting where witches and telepaths are as much a fact of life as cell phones, and behind the bluntness of Sandrine’s inner monologue are startling depths of grief and loss. The work feels unfinished, but in the way a poem might: the narrative denouement leaves the door open for the reader’s own thoughts. (Apr.)”

The book is available in Canada from Amazon.caChapters Indigo, and other sellers.