The concept of time travel has long since burst through the walls of the science fiction genre ghetto and gone mainstream, in everything from popular novels and movies to network TV shows. It's so familiar, in fact, that we're apt to forget how bizarre and illogical an idea it is, which is one of many reasons why Martina Fetzer's Time Binge (Brooks & Smith Book 1: 99 cents ebook, $12.99 paperback) is such a refreshing comic treat.
Zany energy pulses through this tale, told in a wry, deadpan tone, of the terrible troubles paranormal detectives Edward Smith and Arturo Brooks encounter when their employer, a secretive agency that calls itself "the Reticent," sends them to investigate the reported invention of a time machine in Staten Island. Smith and Brooks are fully drawn characters with massive personal flaws, which fuel the tragicomic plot along with their love for each other, and the setting of present-day New York City and its outer boroughs is vividly depicted. Other characters and supposed glimpses of the historical past and the far future are not as successfully fleshed out, although Patience Cloyce, a time-traveling Puritan from the height of the witch craze in Salem, Massachusetts, does show promise. Our present day's corporate drone world, electronic gadget obsession, and navel-gazing hipsters are the main, deserving targets of the book's sharp satire. Highly recommended.
This review is cross-posted on Amazon and Goodreads.
Four-and-a-half Phoboses (out of five).
Friday, June 9, 2017
Thursday, May 25, 2017
SFF as Protest Literature: Are we guarding liberty with zap-guns, or trying to mind control our readers? Join me for a panel discussion at #Balticon, Saturday, May 27, 11 a.m., in the 5th floor Mt. Washington room at the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel, 202 E. Pratt St., Baltimore. With @SarahPinsker,@KMSzpara,@nobilis,@GailZMartin
Wednesday, May 24, 2017
Wednesday, May 3, 2017
Cover reveal for my latest novel, Monsters of Venus, the long-awaited sequel to Seven Against Mars! Come join me at the launch party at the Baltimore Science Fiction Convention (Balticon) in the Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel, 202 E. Pratt St. in Baltimore, on Saturday, May 27 at 4 p.m., and/or hear me read from the novel at the same hotel, Sunday, May 28 at 2 p.m.
Thursday, October 6, 2016
Don't miss the panel on alternate history with ME at #Capclave tomorrow at 6 pm, or you'll always wonder what might have been! I'll be signing books at 7 pm, and reading from my alternate history dystopian horror novel All Souls Day at 10 pm! Join me at the Hilton in Gaithersburg, Maryland.
Thursday, August 4, 2016
Escape to Phobos by Kim Van Kramer is a good old-fashioned science fiction tale, full of adventure and hair-breadth escapes in the quest for the human future in deep space. Van Kramer's heroes are genetic scientists struggling to create new food sources for a starving human race at the apocalyptic start of the twenty-second century, an all-too-plausible scenario of runaway climate change and social collapse that is finally hitting America along with the rest of the world. Protagonist Lirren Lamaar is passionately devoted to this work and to her autistic-spectrum son Logan, a teenager who is already a brilliant scientist in his own right. But Lirren's boyfriend Xanders Pierson (and how many science fiction heroes are single mothers with special-needs children, even in this day and age?) believes the only hope for the human race lies in the new colonies on Mars, and is determined to bring Lirren and Logan there, with their invaluable life-giving research, to forge a new future. But first they must escape greedy and violent enemies who are determined to steal their scientific secrets...