Archive for Reviews

PodCastle logo

PodCastle Spotlight: Welcome to Bordertown

Dave and Anna go to Bordertown with guests Ellen Kushner, Holly Black, Amal El-Mohtar, and Tim Pratt! So grab a beer at the Dancing Ferret (it’s on us), and enjoy the tour!

“Stairs In Her Hair” art by Rima Staines (watercolour and pencil). You can grab a print of it Etsy. And the “Stairs in Her Hair” music video is at youtube.

Check out the Bordertown Website and the Bordertown Music Page! And be sure and check out Welcome to Bordertown and the other B-town books!

There’s plenty of other backdoor guides to Bordertown – so check out the following links!

Shannon’s Law,” by Cory Doctorow, is over at Escape Pod.

Ellen Kushner talks at the Geeks Guide to the Galaxy. (and Tim Pratt) goes to Bordertown.

A Prince of Thirteen Days,” by Alaya Dawn Johnson, at Fantasy Magazine.

Enjoy the trip!

PodCastle logo

PodCastle Miniature 57: Apex

Show Notes

Rated PG: Contains riddles


by Lauren M. Roy

Bronze-plated dragons with snapping shrapnel teeth guarded the landings. Those who weren’t eaten faced a wind-up Sphinx that spat out ticker-tape riddles. She hated it when they answered incorrectly; the Sphinx’ broken voice-recorder played back their dying screams for hours, until she went out and gave it a kick.

PodCastle logo

PodCastle Review 3: Merlin

Merlin, the BBC Television Series

Reviewed by Bill Peters

Merlin, the British tv series, has had it’s ups and downs, but at its best it can be one of those rare shows where the scenes could be allowed to go quiet and be carried by the acting and not the music. It’s what separates it from it’s American counterpart Smallville. Both series are centered around the young life of one of their country’s great heroes, though obviously one of supermortals is of more recent vintage.

PodCastle logo

PodCastle 114: Wolves Till the World Goes Down

Wolves Till the World Goes Down

by Greg van Eekhout

“Hey,” said my brother. “Down there.” Without waiting, he dove toward the sand where a dead Rotweiller rolled in the white foam. It had been a long flight and we were both ravenous. I angled in to follow, and soon we were absorbed in our feast.

A big gray gull challenged our salvage rights, screaming and beating us with his wings, but we tore him to shreds, ate him, then returned to the dog.

Later, my brother would be able to report every minute detail of the incident. He’d describe the precise markings on the gull’s bill, the way he favored his left foot over his right, the iron and salt taste of his blood.

But he wouldn’t be able to say why we’d killed him. He’s expert at the whats and whens and wheres, but he leaves the whys to me.

His name is Munin, Memory. I’m Hugin, Thought.

PodCastle logo

PodCastle Review 2: The City and the City

The City and the City by China Miéville

Reviewed by Peter Wood

The City & The City, Miéville’s latest novel, is stylistically quite different than some of his previous work and, I think, considerably more accessible. In short, The City & The City is a crime novel that follows Inspector Tyador Borlú as he investigates a murder. The tricky part, for Borlú is that while the body was found in his city, Besźel, the murder appears to have been committed in the neighboring city of Ul Qoman. Additionally, there seems to be political slant to the case, putting Borlu in conflict with some very powerful people in both cities. He travels to Ul Qoman and teams up with his counterpart in that city, Qussim Dhatt and together they attempt to bring the murderer to justice. And of course, there are red herrings strewn about and further fatalities as the investigation proceeds (as any proper detective story should have).

Minor plot-oriented spoilers. DO NOT BREACH.

PodCastle logo

PodCastle Review 1: Unseen Academicals

Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett

Reviewed by Bill Peters

PodCastle’s very first review!

It is remarkably hard to review Unseen Academicals, what Terry Pratchett says will likely be his penultimate work. Most people who’ve read Pratchett and liked it have gotten attached to him in a way they don’t to other authors. Part of this is certainly due to the regular and breakneck pace at which he writes, averaging at least one book a year since the first Discworld novel was published in 1983, twenty five years ago. The other part is that many of us would like to live in his world, and we know it will soon be robbed from us.

Minor Spoilers Ensue! (Don’t worry – we don’t tell you how it ends or anything!)