Alex reads me a section from the print version of the damned fine Locus magazine where Booker-winning author Margaret Atwood finally admitted she kind of did occasionally dabble in SF. You’ll recall how outraged she was when some suggested her last book (and her earlier work the Handmaid’s Tale) were SF. SF was about robots and rocket ships she retorted, she wrote ‘speculative fiction’. My arse in parsley sauce, hen! Set in a dystopian future with a world wrecked by environmental carelessness and genetic manipulation run wild. Hmm, kind of sounds like SF to me… Still, on the SF front I had a nice freebie gift from our head office. They’ve started giving a book for the best book suggestion in each week’s bulletin – Alex won the fab Earth natural history book a while back. Well, I won a signed and limited slipcase edition of Peter F Hamilton’s new book, Pandora’s Star. Which is great, except I’m about 700 pages through the same book right now!!! And naturally I got my copy signed by Peter at the recent event. So perhaps I’ll keep this limited edition sealed up for a few years then talk to nice Mr Ebay (unless anyone wants to make me an offer now? Also going a signed first edition hardback of Gaiman’s American Gods and a signed, limited edition slipcase of Tim Burton’s Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy. It’s a Joe Sales Event).

Also in the post this week the second Sookie Stackhouse vampire mystery from Orbit. Just as I finished book one, Dead Untill Dark, so great timing (expect reviews on the Alien in the near future). Not so sure about the premise for book two though – I mean vampires in Dallas? Hell, what sort of self respecting nightwalker hangs out anywhere in the Lone Star State, let alone somewhere as tasteless as Dallas? I mean, really? I can only suspend my disbelief so far you know, heh. Cool covers so far too – stylish and modern without sacrificing the genre look. In fact Orbit have been revamping much of their range, old and new recently with some rather good covers which is great since far too many SF&F and Horror titles often have dreadfully generic covers which put many people off trying them. Alas the book I’m most eagerly awaiting, Love All the People, the complete Bill Hicks, ain’t turned up yet.