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Staff Recommendations

July Events at the Merril Collection

July 4, 2014 | Lorna | Comments (0)


Glen Hirshberg, author of Motherless Child,  The Snowman's Child, and numerous short story collections, will appear at the Merril Collection of Science Fiction on Thursday, July 17, at 7:00PM. Mr. Hirshberg is a previous winner of the Shirley Jackson Award for outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror, and the dark fantastic. Mr. Hirshberg's appearance is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Merril Collection and ChiZine Press.

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                                                                                                       Motherless Child

Staff Recommendations

June 20, 2014 | Lorna | Comments (0)

When the Emperor is murdered, Maia, his isolated, youngest son, abruptly becomes the Emperor Edrehasivar VII. Aided only by his secretary and bodyguards, the new half-goblin emperor fights to change the course of a thousand-year old empire. Fantasy combines with mystery, and politics with suspense, as Maia must identify the murderer of his father before the killer strikes again. Maia Drazhar, hero of The Goblin Emperor, is easily the most charming fictional hero since Lois Bujold's Miles Vorkosigan. Watching this likeable hero overcome all obstacles to establish himself is terrific fun.

  Goblin_emperor Sparrowhillroad
     The Goblin Emperor                                                        Sparrow Hill Road

"Go and talk to the girl in the green silk gown, Who died on Sparrow Hill Road." Teenage Rose Marshall was murdered on Sparrow Hill Road over sixty years ago. Now a ghost, she hitch-hikes along the roads of North America, helping travellers in danger. Not all the people who encounter Rose survive the experience, but most have reason to be grateful for her help. Eerie and charming, Rose's encounters in the afterlife are stories about justice, vengeance and love.

A Game of Thrones

June 22, 2011 | Lorna | Comments (0)

Game of thronesA Game of Thrones, the first book in George R. R. Martin's epic fantasy series, A Song of Ice and Fire, has spawned a tv show, several graphic novels, a fantasy role-playing game, and an on-line game. It's a good sign when a novel gives rise to fiction in other forms; it means that the readers liked the people, enjoyed the imaginary universe, and want to go back there again. The HBO tv series made The Game of Thrones the best known of Martin's many popular creations, and has increased interest in Martin's series.




Hedgeknightcover The two-part graphic novel, The Hedge Knight, tells the story of a minor knight, not a major player, in The Game of Thrones. The story is set in Westeros, Martin's imaginary universe in  A Game of Thrones, and reminds the readers that all minor characters have their own voices and their own stories to tell.






A Game of Thrones (Role-Playing Game)The fantasy role-playing game based on the original novel was published before the television series was made. It gives extra information about the world of Westeros, the society, religion and noble families which play out the game of thrones. The creation of their own characters gives players a worm's-eye view of life in a quasi-medieval society.





Another game, The Maester's Path, is an on-line game accessible at   Players are trying to earn the chain of five metal links which identifies them as maesters, men of knowledge and good character who advise the noble families of Westeros.

Dancewithdragonscover A Dance With Dragons, the long-awaited next book in the series, will be published in the middle of July. I'm looking forward to reading it.



Recommended Reading

March 29, 2011 | Lorna | Comments (0)

The books in the Merril Collection are mostly meant for adult readers of science fiction, fantasy and horror. However, YP fiction (fiction meant for slightly younger readers) is also collected, if it is of  unusual merit. Holly Black's White Cat certainly falls into this category.


Cassell Sharpe is a student in an expensive private school. He is the family failure, the sole member of a family of magically talented criminals who has no magic. He compensates by practicing his mundane illegal skills upon his classmates. When Cassell's family brings him into their dangerous world, he and his friends use their unorthodox skills to save the lives of his brothers. The threats to life and limb are more easily resolved than the issues of trust within his complex family. This is book one of The Curse Workers, and I look forward to reading the next in the series. In the meanwhile, I am going to read all of Black's previous novels.



New Books!

February 28, 2011 | Mary Cannings | Comments (0)

Bonanza week! Some of my favourite authors have had new books come out and are available to be read at the Merril Collection now!

Patricia Briggs is currently my favourite fantasy author, and not only was her first fantasy reissued in a revised form last fall, Masques with a brand new sequel, Wolfsbane, but River Marked, the new Mercy Thompson book is now out!! Yeah and double yeah!

And Tamora Pierce has a new collection of short stories out: Tortall and other lands, which should help hold me until the next Beka Cooper book comes out in the fall.

I have a hard waiting for new books to come in. Authors just cannot write new books as fast as their audience can read them, and when the new book is going to continue a beloved series the wait can seem interminable, but now I have a couple of new books to keep me going while I wait for my hold on the new J. D. Robb, Treachery in Death to arriveā€¦..



River Marked

Treachery in Death

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.

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.