Anders Monsen

Lost worlds and ports of call

Month: August 2005 (page 1 of 2)

Regular programming will resume shortly

Blogging will be lighter than usual the next couple of weeks, as I am finishing up the print version of the Fall issue of Prometheus, contributing a couple of reviews as well as laying out all the Prometheus Awards reports, speeches, and photos.

Fall SF Movie Previews

From Revolution SF, some brief previews of this Fall’s spate of SF related movies. No doubt this was written prior to the announcement that V for Vendetta‘s release date shifted to the Spring, but nonetheless, a tasty menu awaits.

Noble Vision

In “Books That I Have Not Yet Read” Part II, the reason I was led to Stolyarov’s novel was through his review of Noble Vision by Gen LaGreca. Already a nominee for the 2006 Prometheus Award (for best novel published in 2005), the web site calls Noble Vision a “medical suspense novel that delves deeply into the conflict in medicine today between private care and state.” Another review, by Dr. Jonathan Dolhenty also is quite favorable. In addition, the Autonomist also mentions the novel, citing the book’s publisher “Winged Victory Press, a Chicago-based independent press dedicated to publishing works that celebrate the American spirit of individualism.” A second novel is forthcoming by the same publisher. Noble Vision can be purchased through

A review in the pages of Prometheus is forthcoming this Fall. I corresponded briefly via email with LaGreca in 1998, and I fully intend to read this novel, despite the huge stack of books awaiting my attention.

Eden against the Colossus

From the “Books That I Have Not Yet Read” department comes this novel by Objectivist Gennady Stolyarov II. The blurb about Eden Against the Colossus contains several Objectivist keywords, such as “environmentalist mystics” and “intense advodate of Reason,” and is available as an e-book for $10. Sarah Brodsky wrote an in-depth review in early July 2005. Since I have not read the book I can neither endorse nor warn against this work of fiction. However, as a skeptic, I wince at Brodsky’s Randian kool-aid consumption when she makes statements like “an individualist must recognize that even in a futuristic utopia the cult of true womanhood still darkly shines through,” meaning women must subject themselves to men in a Randian utopia. Give me Henrik Ibsen’s women any time.

Ann Benson

With the fears of avian bird flu starting to reach critical mass in some blogs and publications, I think public health will become a huge topic of interest and probable area of government intervention in the year to come.

Ann Benson has written three sf/mystery/historical novels that deal with biology, plagues, government reaction to mass disease. In one novel Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged receives favorable mention, as does Galt’s Gultch, the libertarian El Dorado where refugees from that novel flee the state. Thief of Souls, from 2003 is the most recent, but her two other novels, The Plague Tales and Burning Road are equally worthy, and should be read in that order.

SF Site interviewed Ann Benson back in 1997. As evidence of the web’s evanescent nature, her own web page appears down, and the plague tales web site that she created seems defunct, too.

Minear on Heinlein’s Harsh Mistress

An update on Tim Minear’s project to adapt Robert A. Heinlein’s The Moon is a Harsh Mistress mentions a second version of the script has been delivered to producers. This quote from Minear is quite illuminating:

“This is about a revolution. It’s big and it has a lot of really complex political ideas. It’s hard in that respect. How do you personalize this? There’s a lot of talking in the book – theoretical talking about Libertarian ideals and political structure and that sort of thing – how do you take that and make it immediate and dramatic and emotional? How do you say that stuff through scenes and action, as opposed to characters sitting around and having a conversation? That’s difficult.

“The other thing is to make sure the powers that be in Hollywood don’t force you to turn it into some Marxist screed on socialism, when Heinlein was a Libertarian and it’s about free-market capitalism. You want to try and not make it about an evil corporation. That’s the trick.”

Let’s hope he manages to deliver a great picture that retains the best of this novel, translated to the very different medium of film.

New Victor Milan novel

Victor Milan annonced on his site today his new novel. It’s a series novel — Outlanders — published under house name or nom de plume James Axler.

Update – The novel apparently was published in July, but I missed the previous post in Milan’s Forum pages.

More Firefly reviews

And another libertarian review of Firefly that cites another negative review. It looks like the anti-Firefly-for-political-reasons enjoy Star Trek and the Federation of Planets a lot more than the individualist world view of Mal’s crowd.

Liberal take on Firefly

Someone is not happy with the libertarian elements of Firefly.

More on the Prometheus Awards

The LFS has posted more details on the 2005 Prometheus Award winners.

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