September 11, 2018

Upcoming Events

SANTA CRUZ NOIR (Akashic Books, Trade Paperback, $15.95) event with with editor Susie Bright, associate editor Willow Pennell, and contributors Jon Bailiff, Seana Graham, Vinnie Hansen, Dillon Kaiser, Liza Monroy, Micah Perks, & Jill Wolfson, Saturday, September 15th at 1:00 pm

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinders' Museum, 355 Clementina) with authors Sheila Finch, David D. Levine, moderated by Terry Bisson, Sunday, September 16th at 6:30 pm

Gail Carriger, SOULLESS, THE ILLUSTRATED EDITION (Orbit, Hardcover, $20.00) Sunday, September 23rd at 3:00 pm

Lisa Brackmann, BLACK SWAN RISING (Midnight Ink, Hardcover, $24.99) Saturday, September 29th at 1:00 pm

Caitlin Seal, TWICE DEAD, (Charlesbridge, Hardcover, $17.99) Saturday, September 29th at 3:00 pm

Meet and Greet signing with Peter Moreira, THE HAIGHT (Pike and Powder, Hardcover, $24.95)  Thursday, October 4th at 6:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at the Make Out Room, 3225 22nd St. San Francisco) with authors Indira Allegra, Rachel Kramer Bussel, Cassandra Dallett, Rose Eveleth, Christine No, and Sam Sax, plus guest host TBA, Saturday, October 13th at 7:30 pm

John Scalzi, THE CONSUMING FIRE (Tor, Hardcover, $26.99) Friday, October 19th at 6:00 pm

Litquake Litcrawl Phase 3 (in the Cafe) with authors Charlie Jane Anders, Marie Brennan, Megan E. O'Keefe, and Nancy Tingley, Saturday, October 20th at 8:00 pm

So, Why So Slow?

by Alan Beatts

Hi Folks.  Alan Beatts, freelance interview guy, here and today I'm going to be interviewing Alan Beatts, the owner of Borderlands Books.  Since he and I are both Geminis and, as a result, suffer from an inherent (though quite mild) split personality, this should be a fun interview.  We're going to be talking about his new bookstore location -- specifically I'm going to be asking him why it's taking so very goddamn long for him to finish up the construction work and move the darn store.

Interviewer:  Nice to see you, Alan.  It's been a while.  I think the last time was about six hours ago when I was shaving.  How have you been?

Bookseller:  I've been alright.  A little overworked so far this year, but overall good.  And, the construction work has gotten me into great shape so physically I'm feeling very well.

I:  Since you brought up the construction work, we might as well get right to it.  You're working on the building that you purchased in November last year, right?  The place that you're going to move the bookstore to?

B:  Yup.  Since contractors are scarce right now because of the building boom and, if you can get one, they're pretty expensive, I've been doing most of the construction work myself with help from volunteers.  It's saving us a boat-load of money and I'm having a lot of fun.

I:  But, it's going kind of slowly, isn't it?  When you first bought the building you were hoping to move by July.  That was _two_ months ago.

B:  Ouch.  Yes, it is going quite slowly, thanks for reminding me.  I had forgotten that.

I:  Really?

B:  No.  I think about it every single day -- I've just been trying not to because it really stresses me out.  Sometimes I go for as long and two or three hours without it crossing my mind.

I:  Well, if it's bugging you so much, why not just hire a bunch of contractors and have them get it done?  It might be expensive, but taking so long to move must be costing you money too, right?

Overheard in August

by Jude Feldman

This is a feature that appears periodically, usually (but not always) as we attend conventions and overhear things.  The tradition of keeping track of anonymous overheard bits and bobs started for us at the 2002 ConJose, where trying (or trying not to) fill in the blanks on overheard conversations made us laugh so much that we made it a tradition.  (For those keeping track, the one that started it all was "Shelby, it's not okay to touch your sister's breast with the back of your hand, either!".)

This issue we share some highlights from the store, Writers With Drinks, and this year's World Science Fiction Convention in San Jose:

* Overheard at WorldCon:

"It's like rolling your tongue over a minefield."

"The place is _exceptionally_ slick and chrome.  It's like pooping in the future."

"Just say the word if you want 'Weird Japanese Snacks' on your name badge."

"I WASN'T lying.  I was just making sh*t up."

"I'm pretty sure no one's going to come up and say 'Please fix my Patrick Stewart!"

"I have baser instincts but very high restraint."

"That's why there's so much on the line; because it's entirely about ego."

August Bestsellers

Hardcover
1) Competence by Gail Carrgier
2) Rogue Protocol by Martha Wells
3) Hollywood Dead by Richard Kadrey
4) Ball Lightning by Cixin Liu trans. by Joel Martinsen
5) Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett
6) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
7) Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
8) Alternate Routes by Tim Powers
9) Summerland by Hannu Ranjaniemi
10) Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Trade Paperbacks
1) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
2) The Calculating Stars by Mary Robinette Kowal
3) Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
4) Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers
5) Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
6) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
7) Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
8) The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin
9) Walkaway by Cory Doctorow
10) The Girl in the Green Silk Gown by Seanan McGuire

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
2) Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett
3) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
4) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
5) The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
6) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
7) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
8) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
9) Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
10) Tricks for Free by Seanan McGuire

September News

* Podcaster Matthew Felix interviewed Borderlands owner Alan Beatts on his show!  Matthew says: "On my last episode, I had a wide-ranging talk with Borderlands Books' owner and founder Alan Beatts. We discussed Borderlands' history -- including the controversy that garnered it unexpected national attention in 2015, landing Alan everywhere, from the pages of the New Yorker to on camera with Fox and other news outlets. We also talked about what the climate is like today for indie bookstores, both how they've dealt with Amazon and some of the innovative ways they continue to adapt to the future."  You can watch the show on YouTube: https://youtu.be/1NA3DNB8ZXM or Facebook: https://buff.ly/2LWIokz, or you can listen on iTunes: https://apple.co/2N9OC5p or Google Play: https://buff.ly/2Q4jjYo .

* Celebrated actor Burt Reynolds died recently, and while he didn't act in many science fiction films (famously turning down the role of Han Solo!) here are four movies & TV episodes where Mr. Reynolds experimented with genre.  https://www.inverse.com/article/48749-burt-reynolds-best-roles-in-science-fiction-tv-or-movies

* If you happen to be in the UK in November, why not stop by SFX BookCon 2?  Plenty of amazing authors will be there including Pat Cadigan, MR Carey, Rebecca Kuang, Tade Thompson, Sarah Lotz, Richard Morgan and more!  Check out all the details here: http://www.foyles.co.uk/SFX-Book-Con-2?aCode=AFW&awc=1414_1536332121_5a259d21238595760a04c3abfefd50f2

August 09, 2018

Upcoming Events

Writers With Drinks (at The Make Out Room, Make Out Room, 3225 22nd St, San Francisco) with authors Laura Antoniou, S.L. Huang, Jack Kaulfus, Hannah Pittard, Margaret Wilkerson Sexton, and Marlee Jane Ward, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders!  Saturday, August 11th at 7:30 pm


Seanan McGuire, NIGHT AND SILENCE (DAW, Hardcover, $26.00) Saturday, September 8th at 5:00 pm


Rachel Fellman, THE BREATH OF THE SUN (Aqueduct Press, Trade Paperback, $19.00) Sunday, September 9th at 1:00 pm


Nick Mamatas, THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC OF EVERYTHING (Tachyon Publication, Trade Paperback, $15.95), with guests Meg Elison, Tim Pratt, and Jason Ridler, Sunday, September 9th at 3:00 pm

SANTA CRUZ NOIR (Akashic Books, Trade Paperback, $15.95) event with contributors Susie Bright, Jon Bailiff, Seana Graham, Vinnie Hansen, Dillon Kaiser, Liza Monroy, Micah Perks, & Jill Wolfson, Saturday, September 15th at 1:00 pm

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinders' Museum, 355 Clementina) with authors Sheila Finch, David D. Levine, moderated by Terry Bisson, Sunday, September 16th at 6:30 pm

July Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1) Competence by Gail Carrgier
2) Noir by Christopher Moore
3) Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
4) Summerland by Hannu Rajaniemi
5) Space Opera by Cat Valente
6) Starless by Jacqueline Carey
7) Artificial Condition by Martha Wells
8) Deep Roots by Ruthanna Emerys
9) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
10) The Cabin at the End of the Woods by Paul Tremblay

Trade Paperbacks
1) Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
2) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
3) Revenant Gun by Yoon Ha Lee
4) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
5) Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
6) Record of a Spaceborn Few by Becky Chambers
7) Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
8) Walkaway by Cory Doctorow
9) Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
10) Meddling Kids by Edgar Cantero

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
2) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
3) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
4) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
5) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
6) Marked by Bendict Jacka
7) Heroine Worship by Sarah Kuhn
8) Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
9) Lock In by John Scalzi
10) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson

August News

* Overheard in the Store:
"I keep forgetting that, in the Mission, Thursday is now Friday, and Friday is now Stupid."

* Borderlands' owner Alan Beatts will be interviewed by Matthew Felix on Facebook Live at 6:00 pm on Sunday, August 26th!  Here's some information from the interviewer: "The Matthew FĂ©lix On Air video podcast features author Matthew Felix and guests discussing writing, travel, and whatever else piques Matthew's interest, from spirituality to cultural happenings to the outdoors to anything with a good story worth exploring.  In this episode, Matthew talks with Borderlands Books' Alan Beatts about Borderlands' history, mission, and the current climate for indie bookstores -- and some of the innovative ways they're adapting for the future."  Check it out here, and do remember it's live! https://www.facebook.com/authormatthewfelix/  You'll also be able to catch it later on YouTube https://bit.ly/1MoDsNS or iTunes: https://apple.co/2KAS0AP, or follow the link from Matthew's webpage: http://www.matthewfelix.com

* If you're visiting the Bay Area for the World Science Fiction Convention and will be in San Francisco either before Monday, August 13th or after Monday, August 20th, we'd be delighted to give you a tour of our location-to-be, which is still very much a work in progress.  Just email Alan, abeatts@borderlands-books.com, to set up a time.

* Speaking of WorldCon: if you're an author attending the con and we've somehow missed having your books at our booths, we'd be happy to carry them on consignment at the con.  We usually do a 60% / 40% split, with the author getting 60% of the cover price.  Authors pick up any unsold copies near the end of the con, and we send you a check for sold copies around 30 days after the event.  Just find the Borderlands booth at the convention and Jude should be able to assist you.

July 11, 2018

Upcoming Events

SF in SF (at The American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina Street) with authors Terry Bisson & Paul Park, moderated by guest Cliff Winnig, Sunday, July 22nd at 6:30 pm

B Catling, THE CLOVEN (Vintage, Trade Paperback, $16.95) Wednesday, July 25th at 6:00 pm

Open House at Borderlands West, 1377 Haight St, Saturday, July 28th from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Borderlands Sponsors' Open Mic, Sunday, August 5th at 5:00 pm

Writers With Drinks (at The Make Out Room, 3225 22nd St.) with authors S.L. Huang, Jack Kaulfus, Cassandra Khaw, Hannah Pittard, Margaret Wilkerson Sexton, and Marlee Jane Ward, Saturday, August 11th at 7:30 pm

SF in SF presents: George R.R. Martin in conversation with John Picacio! (A fundraiser for The Locus Science Fiction Foundation, at the Fox Theatre, Redwood City) Tuesday, August 14th at 7:30 pm

July Building News

by Alan Beatts

Hi Everybody,

So, remember last month when I said that the work on the building had been pretty slow and irritating in May but that June was going to be better?  Whelp, thankfully that was true.  Much was accomplished, most notably getting the I-beam fixed, then up and shored in place; pulling out several of the old posts (they were in the way of the excavations for the new foundations); cutting the concrete floor of the basement for the new foundations; and, a bit over a week ago Sunday, getting all the excavation work done.

That Sunday, the 1st, was a truly Borderlands kind of day.  Based on some rough calculations by my friend Zach, it seems we shifted more than 3 tons of dirt up a flight of stairs and then 80 feet into the garden.  There were five of us moving the buckets of dirt and, most of the time, one of us digging and filling the buckets.

It took three hours.

June Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1) Starless by Jacqueline Carey
2) Brief Cases by Jim Butcher
3) Head On by John Scalzi
4) Noir by Christopher Moore
5) Artificial Condtion by Martha Wells
6) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
7) The Oracle Year by Charles Soule
8) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
9) Clockwork Dynasty by Daniel H. Wilson
10) Summerland by Hannu Rajaniemi

Trade Paperbacks
1) Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
2) How to Marry a Werewolf by Gail Carriger
3) Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
4) Revenant Gun by Yoon Ha Lee
5) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
6) Freeze-Frame Revolution by Peter Watts
7) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
8) The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
9) Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
10) Walkaway by Cory Doctorow

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K LeGuin
2) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
3) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
4) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
5) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
6) Sea Peoples by S.M. Stirling
7) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
8) God Save the Queen by Kate Locke
9) Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey
10) Lock In by John Scalzi

July News

* Overheard in the Store:
"I've been seeing the saddest couples on BART [recently]...like if Sid & Nancy were American, 18 years old, and didn't know who Sid & Nancy were."

* Attention, Borderlands community!  Do you work for Stripe or Square, or another mobile credit card service?  We're looking for a contract-free mobile POS and credit card solution to try out while we're at WorldCon next month -- if it works well, it will likely become our in-store replacement for our cash register.  Can you assist us, either directly or with advice?  If so, please email Jude at jfeldman@borderlands-books.com.  We need to have a service functional for WorldCon next month, so time is a bit of the essence, and your help is very appreciated!

* Over at Tor.com, Rebecca Roanhorse gives us a list of five Indigenous authors that we should be reading. https://www.tor.com/2018/06/27/five-indigenous-speculative-fiction-authors-you-should-be-reading/

* Speaking of Rebecca Roanhorse, here is an article about her award-winning new novel TRAIL OF LIGHTNING, and bringing Indigenous futurism to urban fantasy. http://www.denofgeek.com/us/books/books/274577/trail-of-lightning-rebecca-roanhorse-brings-indigenous-futurism-to-urban-fantasy

June 07, 2018

Upcoming Events

TONIGHT! Drop-by signing with Steve Toutonghi, SIDE LIFE (Soho Press, Hardcover, $26.00) Thursday, June 7th at 6:00 pm

Writers With Drinks with authors Joanna Angel, Adam Becker, Vernon Keeve III, Chandler Klang-Smith, and Nitasha Tiku, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders (at the Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd Street, San Francisco) Saturday, June 9th at 7:00 pm

SF in SF with authors Lucy Jane Bledsoe, Meg Elison, and Ellen Klages, moderated by Terry Bisson (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) Sunday, June 10th at 6:30 pm

Jacqueline Carey, STARLESS (Tor Books, Hardcover, $25.99) Wednesday, June 13th at 6:00 pm

Open House at Borderlands West (1377 Haight St. at Masonic) Saturday, June 16th from 12:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Drop-by signing with DJ Butler, WITCHY WINTER (Baen, Hardcover, $25.00) & Christopher Husberg, BLOOD REQUIEM (Titan Books, Trade Paperback, $14.95) Wednesday, June 20th at 6:00 pm

Daniel H. Wilson, CLOCKWORK DYNASTY (Vintage, Trade Paperback, $16.95) Saturday, June 30th at 3:00 pm

June Building News

by Alan Beatts

May was one of those months when things just don't line up quite right -- at least where our building on Haight St.  was concerned.  As a result, we had a bit of a slowdown this month, but things should be picking up shortly.  The first delay was getting the final details of the structural work sorted out.  It wasn't anything major, but fitting some of the beams around the existing stairwell required a bit of back-and-forth with the structural engineer.  Once that was all sorted out, I realized that there were some details for the I-beam in the basement that needed to be clarified, too.  Once all of that was worked out, the welder who is making the beam went on vacation for a week.  By then, it was almost the end of the month.

But, that's all sorted out now and the beam should be ready this week, and I'm very pleased to be working with Ricardo's Welding again (they did some very nice work for me on my motorcycle last year).  We'll be putting that in place and then marking out the foundation locations in the basement for both that beam and the beams upstairs.  Once that's done, we'll be able to start work on the bathroom in earnest.

Despite all that, we made some good progress in the back yard.  The fences are almost done and are looking good - thank you again to all the volunteers who came to clamber about on my scaffolding (I've never built one before! Could you tell?) to construct the frame and then put the redwood boards in.  It looks fantastic, it's very strong, and more importantly it will age well.  We've just got the last bits of the west section left to do and once we're done mucking about on top of the walls we can get started on building the planters.

May Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1) Noir by Christopher Moore
2) Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce
3) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
4) Artificial Condition by Martha Wells
5) Tortall: A Spy's Guide by Tamora Pierce
6) Head On by John Scalzi
7) The Soldier by Neal Asher
8) Space Opera by Cat Valente
9) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
10) In Calabria by Peter S. Beagle

Trade Paperbacks
1) Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
2) How to Marry a Werewolf by Gail Carriger
3) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
4) The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
5) Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
6) Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer
7) The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin
8) Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O by Nicole Galland and Neal Stephenson
9) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
10) Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
2) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
3) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K LeGuin
4) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
5) Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
6) Lock In by John Scalzi
7) Heroine Complex by Sarah Kuhn
8) Tiassa by Steven Brust
9) Red Sister by Mark Lawrence
10) Arcanum Unbounded by Brandon Sanderson

June News

* Overheard in the Store:

"We tore down the ivy.  Then we realized it was _structural_ ivy."

"Want to hold my baby while I get some vampire erotica?"

"Yes, I'm looking for J.R.R. Tolkien's 'Ring Cycle'."

"It will probably be an artisanal bag shop. We're in the Artisanal Bag Shop District, you know."

"I just hate my sneeze. It undermines my authority."

"I love lying to children."

* Are you attending Worldcon 76 in San Jose in August?  Are you looking for a ride to, or a roommate for the con?  If so, email scox@borderlands-books.com and let us know if we can put you in touch with other Borderlands customers who are seeking the same.

* Atlas Obscura made a list of 62 of the World's Best Independent Bookstores and we made the list!  Check out all the other bookstores that you should visit: https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/best-independent-bookstores

* Gardner Dozois, respected science fiction author and editor, has passed away at 70 years of age.  The field has lost a giant. http://www.philly.com/philly/obituaries/gardner-dozois-70-acclaimed-science-fiction-editor-20180529.html

May 09, 2018

Upcoming Events

Tamora Pierce, TEMPESTS AND SLAUGHTER (Random House, Hardcover, $18.99) Wednesday, May 23rd at 5:00 pm

SF in SF with authors Lucy Jane Bledsoe, Meg Elison, and Ellen Klages, moderated by Terry Bisson (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) Sunday, June 10th at 6:30 pm

Jacqueline Carey, STARLESS (Tor Books, Hardcover, $25.99) Wednesday, June 13th at 6:00 pm

Coming up in the summer: B. Catling at the bookstore, Hannu Rajaniemi at The Interval at Long Now, George R.R. Martin in conversation with WorldCon artist GOH John Picacio at The Fox Theatre, and many, many more exciting events!

May Building News

by Alan Beatts

Whew.  The past couple weeks have been kind of a blur.  We've finished the west and south walls -- all patched and painted (well, primed actually).  They came out really well and it makes a huge difference to how the place looks.  We've also torn up all the horrible carpet which has made another huge improvement.  It turns out that, when the carpet was installed, they did a proper job and nailed down plywood to glue the carpet to.  That's a great thing for two reasons; first, I'm not going to have a sand off the carpet glue when I refinish the floors and, second, the plywood has probably protected the floors since the 1970s.  I'm sure that they're going to be pretty worn when I get down to them but, it's better than it would be if they hadn't been protected for forty-plus years.

Along with working on the electrical (more about that in a moment), I've been working on the fences in the back yard (with a lot of help from the volunteer crew).  Today I just did the final work on the south fence.  It was the trickiest because it's (mostly) straight, so getting it level along a 25' run was a challenge. But, it all worked out and it looks wonderful.  The east fence is about half-finished and the west has yet to be started.  Big thanks go out to everyone who helped with that -- Jim, Z'ev, Maddy, Salem, Aliza, Carl, David, Melinda, Russ and Zach.  Despite my sudden inability to measure anything accurately (or do fractional arithmetic in my head), Zach, Russ and David were very patient with me (thanks and sorry, guys.)

April Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1) Tough Mothers by Jason Porath
2) Noir by Christopher Moore
3) Head On by John Scalzi
4) Rejected Princesses by Jason Porath
5) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
6) The Power by Naomi Alderman
7) Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente
8) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
9) In Calabria by Peter S. Beagle
10) Only Human by Sylvain Neuvel

Trade Paperbacks
1) The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans. by Ken Liu
2) Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
3) Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer
4) The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
5) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
6) Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer
7) The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
8) Overneath by Peter S. Beagle
9) Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
10) Best Science Fiction and Fantasy of the Year, Volume 12 edited by Jonathan Strahan

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
2) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
3) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
4) Heroine Complex by Sarah Kuhn
5) Vanguard by Jack Campbell
6) Tricks for Free by Seanan McGuire
7) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
8) Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
9) The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt
10) Besieged by Kevin Hearne

May News

* Overheard in the Store:

"It will probably be an artisanal bag shop. We're in the Artisanal Bag Shop District, you know."

"This man approached me [at a convention] & introduced himself as 'a pre-published author', meaning it, I think, in the same way that I am 'pre-dead'."

"I don't believe that! How on Earth did you get THE MYSTIC ARTS OF ERASING ALL SIGNS OF DEATH [by Charlie Huston] from 'It had a yellow cover & it's about people who clean crime scenes.'!?"

"It was really saccharine; it said 'A year from now, what will you wish you had done today?', and I immediately thought 'Not have disrupted the space-time continuum, duh!'"

"You have not lived until you've heard Christopher Lee in the acoustics of a men's room." - Peter S. Beagle

"Nice to meet you; I need wear your bra for a sec.”

* Get ready for another book about Westeros, but not WINDS OF WINTER -- instead we are getting FIRE AND BLOOD, a history of the infighting that almost wiped out the Targaryen line. More info here: https://www.theguardian.com/books/2018/apr/25/george-rr-martin-winds-winter-not-coming-2018-sixth-volume-game-thrones-targaryen

April 12, 2018

Upcoming Events

Ilana C. Myer, FIRE DANCE (Tor, Hardcover, $26.99) Saturday, April 14th at 3:00 pm

Writers With Drinks with authors Chiwan Choi, Chelsey Johnson, Dominica Phetteplace, Shobha Rao, Lilah Sturges, and Javier Zamora, hosted by Charlie Jane Anders (at the Make Out Room, Make Out Room
3225 22nd St.) Saturday, April 14th at 7:30 pm

Birthday Celebration with Peter S. Beagle! Sunday, April 22nd at 2:00 pm

Catherine Asaro, BRONZE SKIES (Been Books, Trade Paperback, $16.00) and INFINITE STARS (Titan, Hardcover, $24.95) Saturday, April 28th at 3:00 pm

Jason Porath, TOUGH MOTHERS: AMAZING STORIES OF HISTORY'S MIGHTIEST MATRIARCHS (Day Street Books, Oversized Hardcover, $24.99) Sunday, April 29th at 3:00 pm

April Building News

by Alan Beatts

But first . . . Slow With Email

I'm really sorry to still be saying this but, I've been having a terrible time keeping up with my email given everything that is going on (and been going on).  If you've sent me an email that deserves a reply and you haven't heard from me yet, please forgive me.  I'm trying and making some progress but the backlog is still pretty bad.  If the topic of your not-yet-replied-to email is urgent, please send it to me again.  I think I've gotten back to everyone about time-critical stuff but I could have missed something.  Thank you so much for your patience.  And now, the usual . . .

Haight Street Update

And we're off! The wave state is collapsing and things are starting to really progress visually (as opposed to progressing behind the scenes). Thanks to our amazing cadre of volunteers, the west and south walls are now closed up and if the weather would just cooperate, we'd be a lot further along on taping and mudding. Thanks to Mr. Jim Lively, we got all the seams done and a skim coat on the existing drywall, and thanks to the weather we now wait for the rest of the wall to dry completely before proceeding. And wait . . . and wait . . . and, oh, look, more rain . . . wait . . . .

(Side note: "skim coat" is a very thin layer of drywall mud spread over a large surface - in this case, filling in the dings on the existing sheetrock courtesy of 40 years of abuse and covering the truly unfortunate texture courtesy of the disastrous 1970's remodel)

March Bestsellers

Hardcovers

1) The Power by Naomi Alderman
2) If Tomorrow Comes by Nancy Kress
3) Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
4) The Will to Battle by Ada Palmer
5) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
6) Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs
7) Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
8) Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi
9) The Book of Dust by Philip Pullman
10) Impostor Syndrome by Mishell Baker

Trade Paperbacks

1) The Song of All by Tina LeCount Myers
2) The Three-Body Problem by Liu Cixin, trans. by Ken Liu
3) Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
4) Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer
5) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
6) Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer
7) Strange Bird by Jeff Vandermeer
8) New York 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson
9) Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
10) The Atheist in the Attic by Samuel R. Delany

Mass Market Paperbacks

1) Tricks for Free by Seanan McGuire
2) Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
3) The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
4) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
5) Changing Planes by Ursula K. LeGuin
6) The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt
7) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
8) Arcanum Unbounded by Brandon Sanderson
9) Red Sister by Mark Lawerence
10) The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

April News

* Overheard in the Store:
[one very stoned visitor to another]: "Star Trek; so it's non-fiction, but cats; so it's fiction."

* R.I.P. Kate Wilhelm, a prolific and talented author of science fiction and mystery, and the cofounder of the Clarion Writing Workshops, who passed away from respiratory illness.  https://boingboing.net/2018/03/11/the-sweet-birds-sang.html

* R.I.P. Ahmed Khaled Tawfik; considered the first contemporary Arab writer of science fiction and horror, he has passed away at 55.  He leaves behind over 200 novels and fans across the globe.  https://www.alaraby.co.uk/english/news/2018/4/4/egyptian-literary-pioneer-ahmed-khaled-tawfik-passes-away

* R.I.P. Stephen Hawking, a complex & brilliant scientist whose lifelong work impacted and inspired so many, and left a lasting mark on our understanding of the universe. https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/mar/14/stephen-hawking-professor-dies-aged-76

* Worldcon 76's Artist Guest of Honor John Picacio has teamed with authors John Scalzi, Mary Robinette Kowal, Ty Franck, Kate Elliott and more to create The Mexicanx Initiative. They're sponsoring Worldcon Attending Memberships for 50 Mexicanx pros and fans to attend Worldcon in San Jose this summer.  Now that they've achieved that goal, they've created The Mexicanx Initiative's Assistance Fund -- a separate, dedicated fund to provide travel and lodging assistance for those 50 Mexicanx invitees, many of whom ail be journeying across the border from Mexico.  SFSFC, the host committee for Worldcon 76, is handling the collection of all funds which will be distributed to the Recipients at Worldcon.  About $6000 has been collected so far, and the fund's goal is $15,000 before Memorial Day Weekend. If you're able to participate, donate here (see "Mexicanx Initiative Assistance Fund"): https://www.worldcon76.org/faq/donations  And here's a short article from the San Antonio Current on John's idea: https://www.sacurrent.com/ArtSlut/archives/2018/03/29/science-fiction-artist-john-picacio-gives-a-lift-to-other-mexicanx-creators

March 07, 2018

Upcoming Events

Loteria Game Night and Poster Signing with artist John Picacio! Thursday, March 15th at 7:00 pm

Mishell Baker, IMPOSTOR SYNDROME (Saga Press, Hardcover $29.99 and Trade Paperback, $15.99) and Seanan McGuire, TRICKS FOR FREE (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99) Saturday, March 17th at 6:00 pm

Come Visit Borderlands West, Saturday, March 24th from 12:00 to 6:00 pm - Alan will be showing off our favorite construction site at 1377 Haight St. (at Masonic Ave.)

SF in SF with authors Nancy Kress, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, and Jack Skillingstead (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina Street, San Francisco) Sunday, March 25th at 6:30 pm

Ilana C. Myer, FIRE DANCE (Tor, Hardcover, $26.99) Saturday, April 14th at 3:00 pm

March 06, 2018

March Building News

by Alan Beatts

Frustratingly, I don't have very much news this month.  We're in that miserable stage of construction wherein we mostly wait.  We wait for the engineer to get drawings back to us and we wait for PG&E to answer basic questions.  Until those things happen, I've been keeping busy closing up the wall that we can close (i.e. putting up sheetrock and patching),  but even that process has had some waiting because the next step, "Tape and Mud", has to wait 'til it gets a bit warmer, since there's no heat hooked up yet.

(An aside: "tape and mud" is the process in which we use paper tape to close the seams where pieces of sheetrock meet.  That tape in held in place and covered by joint compound, ("mud"), which is mostly gypsum dust mixed with water.  Since water is the solvent, it takes time to dry and contracts when it does.  If the temperature is too low, it takes forever to dry and, worse, cracks more.  So, we need some days that are mostly over 55 degrees, and we haven't had many of those.  There are other compounds that I could use, but they are a pain in the butt to work with compared to regular mud.)

On the bright side, the volunteers that I'm working with are great, and they've been learning a lot.  Last Sunday I realized that I'm basically training a framing crew from the ground up.  It's taking a little time (and some mis-cut lumber),  but they're smart folks, willing to work hard, and are learning really fast.  I expect that, by the time we're building walls in earnest, they'll be pretty darn good.  So it's a great investment for the future.  Most of the hard-core are already getting up to speed with nailguns and compound miter saws.  All that aside, everyone who's come to help has been lovely and has worked their asses off.  It's been heartwarming to see that kind of support and I'm grateful to every one of them.

If the current weather holds, I hope to start the tape and mud this weekend along with doing the framing for the supply closet.  And, based on some email exchanges today, we might have the engineering drawings by the end of this week.  Which would be a very, very fine thing.

If you're curious about how the place looks, you'll have a chance this month to come check it out.  I'll be holding the place open for visits on Saturday, the 24th, from noon until six pm.  Feel free to stop by anytime in that window and I'll give you the ten-cent tour.

February Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1. The Power by Naomi Alderman
2. Tempests and Slaughter by Tamora Pierce
3. The Will to Battle by Ada Palmer
4. Provenance by Ann Leckie
5. Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
6. Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
7. Artemis by Andy Weir
8. Black Wolves of Boston by Wen Spencer
9.  Dark State by Charles Stross
10.  Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

Trade Paperbacks
1. The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, edited by Ken Liu
2. The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
3. Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
4. Binti: The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor
5. Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
6. Too Like the Lightning by Ada Palmer
7. Woman on the Edge of Time by Marge Piercy
8. Universal Harvester by John Darnielle
9. All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
10. Amberlough by Lara Ellen Donnelly

Mass Market Paperbacks
1. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
2. Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
3. The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
4. Changing Planes by Ursula K. LeGuin
5. Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. LeGuin
6. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rotthfuss
7. His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi Novik
8. Old Man's War by John Scalzi
9. The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
10. The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt

March News

* Overheard in the Store:
"I told them, 'Several people this morning are really lucky that it's impossible to get punched in the face through a telephone.'"

* As much as spending a stupid amount of money to make a TV series based on The Lord Of The Rings was, well . . . stupid (http://deadline.com/2017/11/amazon-the-lord-of-the-rings-tv-series-multi-season-commitment-1202207065/), Amazon's most recent move is brilliant.  They're making a TV series based on Iain M. Bank's Culture novels, starting with Consider Phlebas.  We cannot wait.  https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/21/17035618/amazon-culture-series-iain-m-banks-television-show

* R.I.P prolific speculative author Victor Milan.  To read more about the series he contributed to, the writers he helped and the impact he had, read this wonderful obituary in Albuquerque Journal.  https://www.abqjournal.com/1141374/prolific-author-victor-milaacuten-leaves-science-fiction-legacy.html

* Popular Bangladeshi science fiction Muhammad Zafar Iqbal was recently stabbed in the head.  He survived, and is currently undergoing treatment, but please keep him in your thoughts.  http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/popular-science-fiction-writer-zafar-iqbal-stabbed-in-bangladesh/article22920210.ece

February 07, 2018

Upcoming Events

NEVERTHELESS, SHE PERSISTED (Book View Cafe, Trade Paperback, $19.99) with authors Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff, Marie Brennan, Nancy Jane Moore, Deborah Ross and Dave Smeds Saturday, February 10th at 3:00 pm



Writers With Drinks with authors Steph Burt, Jasmine Guillory, Ellen Klages, Angela Pneuman, and Molly Sauter  (at the Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd St, San Francisco, CA) Saturday, February 10th at 7:30 pm

SF in SF with authors Nancy Jane Moore and Trina Robbins (at the American Bookbinders Museum, 355 Clementina St, San Francisco) Sunday, February 11th at 6:30 pm

Patricia Bossano, NAHIA (Waterbearer Press, Trade Paperback, $15.99) Thursday, February 22nd at 6:00 pm

Ada Palmer, THE WILL TO BATTLE (Tor Books, Hardcover, $26.99) Saturday, February 24th at 3:00 pm

Tina LeCount Myers, THE SONG OF ALL (Night Shade Books, Hardcover $25.99 and Trade Paperback $14.99) Saturday, March 3rd at 3:00 pm

Mishell Baker, IMPOSTOR SYNDROME (Saga Press, Hardcover $29.99 and Trade Paperback, $15.99) and Seanan McGuire, TRICKS FOR FREE (DAW, Mass Market, $7.99)

February Building News

by Alan Beatts

Last month I told you all the things that were up in the air about the construction work on our new building on Haight Street.  In the past few weeks they've all been resolved and, in every case, the news is quite good.  Here's the current run-down:

Moving the Electrical Service
Great news on this front.  Last month I said that I was thinking that we'd just have to live with the odd little wall right in front of the door as you enter the place that houses the electrical meters, because PG&E was going to take forever and a day to approve moving them.  But, great news -- it turns out that the city building department trumps PG&E.  If we get the city permits to move the meters, then we can do the work regardless of whether PG&E gives us their blessing or not.  So, it's full steam ahead on that job.  Antonius Dintcho, our electrician, has already arranged for a pre-permit meeting with the inspector.  He suggested it and I think it's a great idea.  It costs a couple hundred bucks but the inspector comes down before we get the permits and start work.  We can discuss with him what we want to do and he'll give us pointers on how he'd like us to do it.

Without this step, we'd need to get the permits, do all the rough work, and then have it inspected.  For something simple, like putting in some outlets or new lights, that's fine, but for something as complicated (and expensive) as relocating meters and panels, there is rooms for interpretation about what the electrical code requires.  By having a pre-inspection we reduce the chances that, after doing a ton of work, the inspector ends up being dissatisfied with our interpretation of the code, and makes us tear a bunch of it out.

The one thing that we will need to wait for PG&E to do is increase the amount of electrical service coming into the building.  But, that's not a problem since we can put in all the gear for 400 amp service, but use smaller main breakers so that it'll be correct for the existing 200 amp service.  Then, in the fullness of time, when PG&E gets around to us -- they upgrade the service, we swap the main breakers out and we're all set.  And, swapping the breakers is only a ten minute job (granted, a sweaty, nervous ten minute job -- at least if you're me; 400 amps at 240 volts will kill a person very, very, extra-crispy dead).

January Bestsellers

Hardcovers
1) Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
2) Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire
3) Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
4) Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire
5) Dark State by Charles Stross
6) La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman
7) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
8) The Power by Naomi Alderman
9) Artemis by Andy Weir
10) Iron Gold by Pierce Brown

Trade Paperbacks
1) Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
2) The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, translated by Ken Liu
3) Binti: The Night Masquerade by Nnedi Okorafor
4) Akata Witch by Nnedi Okorafor
5) Robots vs. Fairies edited by Dominik Parisien and Navah Wolfe
6) Lovecraft Country by Matt Ruff
7) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
8) The Tree by Na'amen Gobert Tilahun
9) Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin
10) The Last Days of New Paris by China Mieville

Mass Market Paperbacks
1) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
2) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
3) Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
4) Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
5) Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin
6) A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
7) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
8) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
9) The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin
10) The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi

February News

* Overheard in the Store:

"I'm going to make glitter prints with it.  How often do you get to make art with your internal organs?"

"Seriously surreal.  I'm inadvertently eavesdropping on these 4 Well-Heeled White Women of a Certain Age, & they're discussing their preferred CBD concentrations."

"I'm going to chop your head off! I love you!"

"If you're equally terrified of everything, you're kind of fearless."


* The world has lost of the best writers of the last century.  Acclaimed poet, essayist, translator and author Ursula K. Le Guin passed on January 22nd 2018 at the age of 88.

--An obituary from space.com: https://www.space.com/39470-ursula-k-le-guin-obituary.html

--5 Canadian speculative writers talk about their favorite Ursula K. Le Guin novel: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2018/01/23/580109007/ursula-le-guin-whose-novels-plucked-truth-from-high-fantasy-dies-at-88

-- Author Nisis Shawl remembers Ursula K. Le Guin: https://www.seattletimes.com/entertainment/books/author-nisi-shawl-remembers-a-literary-hero-ursula-k-le-guin/

January 14, 2018

2018 Sponsorships Are Ready To Go

At the beginning of 2015 Borderlands was getting ready to close.  San Francisco voters had passed an increase in the minimum wage that was going to end the financial viability of the store, probably by the middle of July that year.  If not at that point, then the second increase scheduled for July of this year was certainly going to do the job.  Although I and the rest of the staff strongly support minimum wage laws in general and we suspected that San Francisco's local increase would be generally positive for the city as a whole, we were trapped by the idiosyncrasy of the book business.  Unlike most products, books have a price printed on them. That makes the usual business solution of increasing prices to cover higher expenses impossible for us.  Rather than ride the business down into the grave, I and the rest of the staff decided it was better to close quickly, at the time of our choosing and at the top of our game.

Our customers were very much opposed to this and, out of their comments & suggestions and in consultation with the staff, we decided to try an experiment.  We would ask that a minimum of 300 people sponsor the store for $100 each.  If that many people were willing, it would offset the added expense of the wage increases that were scheduled to raise the wage to $15 per hour by the middle of the following year.  Since that increased expense would be on-going, a basic assumption was that the sponsorship would need to recur each year.

2018 will be our fourth year operating as a sponsored business.  Thus far, it has been a huge success.  Not only have more than double the required number of people sponsored us for the past two years but, with the support of our sponsors, customers, and fellow professionals in our field, we were able to raise the funds to purchase a building on Haight Street to be our permanent location.  2018, our 20th year in business, is going to be a momentous one marked by our relocation to our new home.  We will no longer be subject to the greatest threat to the survival of any small business -- a massive and unmanageable increase in rent.

As exciting as this year will be, it's not going to be easy.  We are still under the wage pressure that caused us to start the sponsorship program in the first place.  In time, our new building will ease some of that pressure, once the costs of moving and the finances stabilize, but for now the finances of the building are only self-supporting and they do not benefit the bookstore.  In fact, the building finances are only self-supporting once the bookstore is paying the rent that currently goes to our landlord into the building's coffers instead.  Added to that pressure, Alan will be doing a great deal of work to get the building is shape to house the store, which means that there will be even more work than usual for the rest of the bookstore and cafe staff.

If you have never been a sponsor or if you were in the past but stopped, this year will be a watershed moment for your support.  If you'd like to sign up, you can do so on-line at https://borderlands-books.com/buysponsorship.html, or you can call 888 893-4008, email office@borderlands-books.com or come into the store in person.  Though there are quite a few benefits to sponsorship (you'll find a full list here - http://borderlands-sponsors.blogspot.com/p/sponsor-benefits-and-privilidges.html) the greatest thing that your sponsorship will accomplish is helping us move forward and make our transition to our new space.

If you're interested in more details about how the sponsorship program came to be, you'll find the story here http://borderlands-sponsors.blogspot.com/p/why-sponsorships.html.

In closing we'd like to thank everyone who has been a sponsor in the past.  Without you, we wouldn't be here.  

January Building News

by Alan Beatts

Hi Everyone and Happy New Year,

I hope that 2018 is treating you well thus far.  For me it started with a horrible cold and it's gotten steadily better from there (not a hard trick to accomplish).  Of course, it's been crazy busy and I'm still way behind on my email, but it would be unreasonable to think that it would be any other way given the events of the past few months.

The biggest one, our purchase of the building on Haight Street (Borderlands West, if you will), has been working out mostly quite well with only a few hiccups so far.  The process of getting the building in shape for us to move is mostly what I'm going to be writing about in this newsletter over the next few months.  Those posts are liable to be pretty long (like this one), which is why we've moved them to the end of the newsletter.

Before I get into all the news and plans about the building, I wanted to let you all know that I'll be having an open-house there this month.  This Saturday, January the 20th, I'll be around from noon until six in the evening.  Feel free to stop by any time in that window and I'll give you the nickel-tour of the place as well as answering any questions you have about our plans.  If you can make it, you really should -- the place is probably just about as torn up as it'll ever be and I think it will be fun in a few years to talk about how you remember back when it was a construction site.

But, if you can't make it to the open house, I've finally got some pictures up - http://borderlands-books.blogspot.com/p/haight-st-photos.html.  It's not the best forum for pictures but it was easy to do and easy is a feature much in demand for me, right now.  I should have more pictures up in a bit.

Upcoming Events

Chad Stroup, SECRETS OF THE WEIRD (Grey Matter Press, Trade Paperback, $18.95) Sunday, January 21st at 3:00 pm

CANCELLED - Na'amen Gobert Tilahun, THE TREE (NightShade Books, Trade Paperback, $14.99) Sunday, January 28th at 2:00 pm 

SF in SF with authors Cecelia Holland and Kim Stanley Robinson (at the American Bookbinders' Museum, 355 Clementina, San Francisco) Sunday, January 28th at 6:30 pm

David Fitzgerald and Dana Fredsti, TIME SHARDS (Titan Books, Trade Paperback, $14.95) Saturday, February 3rd at 3:00 pm

NEVERTHELESS, SHE PERSISTED (Book View Cafe, Trade Paperback, $19.99) with authors Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff, Marie Brennan, Nancy Jane Moore, Deborah Ross and Dave Smeds Saturday, February 10th at 3:00 pm

Writers With Drinks with authors Steph Burt, Ellen Klages, C.B. Lee, Angela Pneuman, and Molly Sauter  (at the Make-Out Room, Make-Out Room, 3225 22nd St, San Francisco, CA) Saturday, February 10th at 7:30 pm

December Bestsellers

Hardcovers

1) Persepolis Rising by James S.A. Corey
2) La Belle Sauvage by Philip Pullman
3) Oathbringer by Brandon Sanderson
4) Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
5) Artemis by Andy Weir
6) Six Months, Three Days, Five Others by Charlie Jane Anders
7) Well of Ascension Special Leatherbound Edition by Brandon Sanderson
8) A War in Crimson Embers by Alex Marshall
9) The Power by Naomi Alderman
10) The Will to Battle by Ada Palmer

Trade Paperbacks

1) The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, trans by Ken Liu
2) Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
3) The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
4) All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders
5) Annihilation by Jeff Vandermeer
6) The Stone Sky by N.K. Jemisin
7) The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin
8) A Closed and Common Orbit by Becky Chambers
9) Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie
10) A Crown for Cold Silver by Alex Marshall

Mass Market Paperbacks

1) Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
2) Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
3) The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
4) Old Man's War by John Scalzi
5) Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
6) Red Mars by Kim Stanley Robinson
7) Who Fears Death? by Nnedi Okorafor
8) The Wrong Stars by Tim Pratt
9) American Gods by Neil Gaiman
10) Heroine Complex by Sarah Kuhn

January News

* Overheard in the Store:

"My astrological chart makes it really difficult. . . I desperately want to save the world, but I can't find my keys."

"There's a 'Game of Thrones' coloring book?  Does it only come with red crayons?"

"Frequently when I'm traveling it ends up being 'Hm, books or pants?'"

"She's so beautiful. . . it's like if Disney had made a Goth princess."

"Well, yeah -- [Book Title] is totally atrocious trash, but it's SO MUCH fun to read!"

"You've got to grab life by the cookies."

"My brain is like, 'I know it's 3 am & you were just about to doze off, but you don't actually know what "emulsify" means! You should look it up IMMEDIATELY!'"

"I may have reached 'peak San Francisco'.  Girlfriend has 'Instant pot' on her Christmas list, and I have no idea whether that is a cooking thing, or a medical marijuana delivery service, like InstaCart for joints."

* Overheard at Writers With Drinks:

"Alyssa Cole understands that the most heroic thing an intergalactic hero can do is fall in love."

"I don't know what a BitCoin is, but it seems like the kind of thing you'd get when you sell your soul."

"Bookstores are like a magical petting zoo for stories!"

"It's not like 'Oh, I can't watch that anymore because. . . hyperspace."

* Our friends at Comix Experience <https://www.comixexperience.com/> will be hosting a signing with the fabulous Saladin Ahmed on January 19th at 6:00 pm!  He'll be signing BLACK BOLT.  For more information, see https://www.comixexperience.com/events/

* Distinguished local author Nick Mamatas is teaching another Fabulist Fiction course at WeWork Golden Gate (25 Taylor St., San Francisco).  The class will run for six sessions (Saturday, 2:00 - 5:00 pm), February 10th - March 17, 2018.  For more information, and to sign up, see: https://sfwriting.institute/portfolio/fabulist_fiction/

* R.I.P. Susan Grafton, celebrated author of the popular Kinsey Millhone mystery series.  Her daughter has stated that there will be no ghostwriter to finish off the series and it will stay lettered from A to Y  https://www.nbcnewyork.com/entertainment/entertainment-news/Mystery-Writer-Sue-Grafton-Dies-in-California-467174743.html