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November 2010

Steampunk Fantasy

November 8, 2010 | Lorna | Comments (0)


SteampunIrondukeindex.aspxk fantasy mixes advanced technology with Victorian culture. creating a world which is recognizable, but turned sideways to reality. In Meljean Brook's new book, Iron Duke Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth's problems begin with a murder on the property of Rhys Trahaearn, the sinister Iron Duke. The stakes become higher as Mina and Rhys use their wits to resolve political and personal dangers arising from pirates, zombies, zeppelins and nanotechnology. Highly recommended.




Related Non-Fiction

Packing for Mars: the curious science of life in the void  was written by Mary Roach, author of Stiff: the curious lives of human cadaverSpook: science tackles the afterlife, and other clever books in which she investigates aspects of everyday life which most people manage to overlook. Mary Roach shares the fun of researching the personal aspects of space travel; chatting with astronauts, visiting the vomit comet (NASA's freefall facility),and details the odd experiments devised to work out if it is possible to get there from here, exactly how we would have to prepare for the trip.

Favourite Sites

Lines and Colors - Art Blog

Charley Parker doesn't limit his blog to art involving science fiction and fantasy; he covers a wide variety of artists, techniques and areas of associated interest. Readers interested in dinosaurs will also enjoy this site. Lines and colors  is updated frequently and provides links to other sites of interest.

New to us

November 3, 2010 | Lorna | Comments (0)

Hi. This is the first post to the Merril Collection blog. The contributors to the Merril Collection blog will be the five librarians who work at the Merril Collection. We'll post information about forthcoming events at the Merril Collection, recommend books, provide links to other sf-related sites, and write about anything else that seems likely to interest the sf community.

The Merril Collection and the Friends of the Merril Collection sponsor events throughout the year, where people of interest to the sf community, often writers, read from their forthcoming fiction, talk to their fans and pass on news about forthcoming projects. You can always check the Merril Collection Facebook page for additional information about events.

Next week, on November 10 at 7:00 in the Merril Collection reading room, the Merril Collection will host 4 readings sponsored by the Toronto Public Library and the Sturgeon Literary Trust, celebrating the publication of the 13th and final volume of the complete works of Theodore Sturgeon, Case and the Dreamer. Robert Charles Wilson, Nalo Hopkinson, Lesley Livingston, and Michaelle Sagara will read from some of Sturgeon's short fiction and Noel Sturgeon will talk about her father and his writing career.

The following week on November 18, at 7:00 p.m. in the Merril Collection reading room, sf writer Michael Swanwick will read from his fiction and talk about his writing career. 


Cryoburn was worth the long wait for another novel by Lois McMaster Bujold. Imperial Auditor Miles Vorkosigan begins an off-world investigation by getting lost in a necropolis, then hiding out with a street kid, while investigating the political and financial ramifications of a culture where people want to live forever. Great fun.


Arts Unknown: the life and art of Lee Brown Coye by Luis Ortiz. Coye is best known in the sf community for the work he did illustrating Arkham House's fiction, although he also painted a lot of Americana. Ortiz' biography reproduces many of Coye's most striking pieces.

Associated Interest

People who have read Sean Russell's fantasies, beginning with The Initiate Brother might be interested to learn that he also writes historical fiction as S.T. Russell. A Battle Won is the 2nd in a series about an English naval officer during the Napoleonic War, continuing the story started in Under Enemy Colors. Russell's writing shows a good understanding of this period, his characters are interesting and the adventures convincing.

Lorna Toolis, Collection Head

The Merril Collection holds over 70,000 items, all science fiction, fantasy, or horror, as well as non-fiction about science fiction and fantasy. The materials are available for reading room use only. For more information call the Merril Collection at 416-393-7748.