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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Thursday, March 01, 2007 - 11:30 am:   

NOVELLAS
The Master Miller's Tale -6- Ian R. MacLeod

NOVELETS
Kaleidoscope -81- K. D. Wentworth
Telefunken Remix -130- A. A. Attanasio

SHORT STORIES
The Tamarisk Hunter -64- Paolo Bacigalupi
The Great White Bed -108- Don Webb

DEPARTMENTS
Books to Look For -54- Charles de Lint
Books -58- James Sallis
Plumage from Pegasus: Grow Old Along with Me -78- Paul Di Filippo
Films: Waiting on a Ship Called Tomorrow -102- Kathi Maio
Science: Think Small -118- Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty
Coming Attractions -160-
Curiosities -162- David Langford

CARTOONS: Arthur Masear (77), Bill Long (107).
COVER BY MARK EVANS FOR "THE MASTER MILLER'S TALE"
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2007 - 09:06 am:   

Last month's issue shipped late. Now this month's issue has printed and shipped early.
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S. Hamm
Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2007 - 02:09 pm:   

Should a Faithful Reader in SF, CA be concerned if his April issue has not yet arrived?
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Wednesday, March 14, 2007 - 07:45 pm:   

No, not yet, Sam. Just heard from a subscriber in El Dorado County whose issue just arrived today. Give it another day or three before becoming concerned.
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Daniel P. Haeusser
Posted on Thursday, March 15, 2007 - 09:38 am:   

I just received my April issue in St Louis yesterday (Wed the 14th). I've ready very little of Gene Wolfe, and I'm eager to dig in.
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John Lodder
Posted on Thursday, March 15, 2007 - 04:14 pm:   

April '07 issue arrived today, 3/15, in Chicago.
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John William Thiel
Posted on Monday, March 19, 2007 - 09:37 am:   

There's complaints over at the Dell forum boards about mundane sf, so I'd point out that "The Master Miller's Tale" seems to be an example of that somewhat encroaching genre, title and all. Not that it wasn't a good tale, but...cf Chaucer...?

"Kaleidoscope" didn't look like it would be good, but it is, as you suggest, a very nice little story. Only the author might have wanted to change the title if she was familiar with Bradbury's anthologies.

I see Don Webb has an ad for his stories in the Marketplace as well as a story in the issue. That's keeping up front.

The cover is very effective, maintaining that standard for the magazine. Good job!
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John Joseph Adams
Posted on Monday, March 19, 2007 - 10:06 am:   

How is "The Master Miller's Tale" an example of mundane SF? Admittedly, it's been a while since I read the story, but isn't it fantasy?
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S. Hamm
Posted on Monday, March 19, 2007 - 01:34 pm:   

May '07 arrived on schedule in SF today (3/19), preceding its predecessor.
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John William Thiel
Posted on Monday, March 19, 2007 - 03:48 pm:   

Well, I looked upon the mill as integral to the piece, thereby giving it an aspect of science; besides, science is a defense against the mundanes and fantasy, as it seems to me, isn't.
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Dave Truesdale
Posted on Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 04:56 pm:   

As soon as the Tangent Online managing editor can free-up some time form her day job, you'll see posted a special "SF By Starlight" piece I reserve for only what I consider Top Shelf SF or F. This newest piece is on MacLeod's "The Master Miller's Tale." I thought it an excellent piece of _Fantasy_.

Dan Simmons based Hyperion on Chaucer, much more than MacLeod does his story, and no one was bitching about it then. :-)

Dave
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John Joseph Adams
Posted on Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 07:13 pm:   

I think you're misunderstanding the term "mundane SF". It refers to the type of SF which Charles Stross describes as SF that "eschews the impossible and unknowable in an attempt to focus on the possible and the relevant."
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Dave Truesdale
Posted on Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 07:48 pm:   

JJA: "I think you're misunderstanding the term "mundane SF"."

I was, indeed. Since "Mundane" wasn't capitalized upthread, I took its meaning in the usual sense.

Just got back from the Analog forum thread where they are discussing this, and immediately knew they were talking about Ryman's "Mundane SF." So I withdraw my above remarks. :-)

I think it a far stretch to imagine "Miller's Tale" as Mundane SF. The only way that definition works for me in this specific _fantasy_ story is if you want to say the clash between an agrarian and oncoming industrial age deals with a real-world problem we faced almost 200 years ago, and the similarities we might be facing today with the coming Information/Computer Age assuming the role of the Industrial Revolution of yore, and those--for one reason or another--unwilling to embrace it.

While "Miller's Tale" is a definite fantasy, its _theme_ is of the sort I can see Mundane SFers wanting to embrace. They are into near-Earth and/or near-future problems, and a clash of the old with the new (as in technologies) is right up their alley. Maybe they think they've found such a story here. I don't know. But like I say, that's stretching it. You could include a _lot_ of fantasy novels or stories if this is indeed the case.

Seem reasonable, or am _I_ stretching a bit in trying to understand their pov?

Dave
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PM
Posted on Tuesday, March 20, 2007 - 07:51 pm:   

Chaucer is a barrier. This may very well be a wonderful story but when Chaucer's name gets tossed around...it simply creates a barrier.

One Chaucer was enough :-)
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John William Thiel
Posted on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 - 06:45 am:   

"Mundane sf" has an assigned meaning for which one would have to reference the coiners and promulgators of the term, but I think any concern with the effects of science (such as the science involved in the industrial revolution) is a prime consideration of the mundane attitude--how science affects life or people's lives. Thereby mundane science fiction is bound to come into being; but it's prone to draw everything to its own considerations, to the detriment of science and science fiction. There is more consideration in it than new ideas.
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John Joseph Adams
Posted on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 - 02:04 pm:   

I don't know what you're talking about. It doesn't even matter what mundane sf is--*that* story is fantasy.
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Dave Truesdale
Posted on Wednesday, March 21, 2007 - 04:12 pm:   

Mundane SF, I predict, is naught but a confusing classification that will strut and fret its hour upon the stage and then be heard no more.
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Thursday, March 22, 2007 - 08:47 am:   

I don't mean to interrupt the discussion here, but this is the place for me to note that some subscribers are receiving their May issues this week. The bulk of subscriber copies are still en route, though.

Now, back to your discussion of mundane matters. . . .
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Saturday, March 31, 2007 - 09:50 am:   

TANGENT ONLINE review of this issue:

http://www.tangentonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1013&Item id=259

And some comments from Dave Truesdale:

http://www.tangentonline.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1006&Item id=269
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Bruce Chrumka
Posted on Saturday, March 31, 2007 - 10:15 am:   

Greatly enjoyed the issue and heartily agree with the reviews of Ian R. MacLeod's latest masterpiece.
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Oskar Ortiz
Posted on Saturday, April 14, 2007 - 05:59 pm:   

Could someone please explain the story "The Great White Bed" by Don Webb. Morbid I understood, but what happened? Hate to spoil it for anyone but I am seriously confused.

I adored "The Master Miller's Tale", found the world totally enjoyable since I am a big fan of the whole "-punk" (Steampunk, cyberpunk, fantasypunk- you name it) idea.

I tried to find MacLeod's book "The Light Ages" but apparently it is out of print. A shame, perhaps this story will bring it back.
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Bruce Chrumka
Posted on Saturday, April 14, 2007 - 06:18 pm:   

Oskar, you can always score a copy from abebooks.com. 'The House of Storms' was the stellar follow-up to 'The Light Ages'. Check out 'The Summer Isles' from Aio Publishing. Hell, buy anything by Ian R. MacLeod.
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Friday, April 27, 2007 - 06:30 am:   

Two stories from this issue are reviewed here:

http://www.sfsite.com/columns/schrodinger246.htm
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John Joseph Adams
Posted on Monday, April 30, 2007 - 03:19 pm:   

What was your favorite story in the May 2007 issue? Vote in the favorite story poll!

http://www.tuginternet.com/jja/journal/archives/005530.html
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Fred J. Miller
Posted on Tuesday, May 01, 2007 - 12:53 pm:   

I haven't seen so much fun taken out of fiction since I took graduate seminars nearly twenty years ago. Just let it blow your hair back! I loved this entire issue. I loved "The Master Miller's Tale" partly because my own father's farming methods were thirty years behind. That's why he failed. The story was a tragedy, to be sure, but wasn't anyone giggling about a man who could release wind at will?

After years of critics killing fiction, I am forced to just look at story. Call me an ass, but "May not an ass know when the cart draws the horse?"
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Fabrice Doublet
Posted on Monday, May 28, 2007 - 07:25 am:   

Just read "The Master Miller's Tale". I loved it. THaks Gordon.
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Tuesday, July 10, 2007 - 06:34 pm:   

Review of the May issue:

http://www.bestsf.net/reviews/fsf0705.html
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Blue Tyson
Posted on Thursday, September 13, 2007 - 06:13 am:   

The Master Miller's Tale is better than The Light Ages, I think as suggested. Both of which are pretty obviously fantasy.

The intro to Telefunken is right, it is odd, outre, or whatever else you like to call it, but my favorite from this issue.

Fantasy and Science Fiction 661 Ratings
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Gordon Van Gelder
Posted on Thursday, September 13, 2007 - 10:21 am:   

This easily cracks the mark, having a 3.60 average, which is the second highest American magazine story average this year I think, although only 5 tales here

So what issue fared better? Inquiring minds (including ones that are grateful for your consideration) want to know.
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Blue Tyson
Posted on Thursday, September 13, 2007 - 10:33 am:   

This one :-

Fantasy and Science Fiction 665

Which, funnily enough is the first one I read, as you were kind enough to send out copies to bloggers, and I was lucky enough to be one of them.

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