The name of this blog was inspired by the Beyond Reality discussion group, which has been around for almost two decades and which I’ve been managing for more than half of that time. The group is currently housed at GoodReads (a site I love) and has over 850 members. Because this site’s name took its inspiration from the group, I post monthly updates about the group here, including our Books of the Month, our series discussions, and any other special events like giveaways or author visits. Please consider this an invitation to join us, if you’re interested in SF&F book discussion. And if book discussions aren’t your thing, maybe you’ll find some additional book recommendations in this monthly feature!
Beyond Reality‘s Books of the Month for March are:
The Scar by China Miéville for fantasy. My thoughts: awesome novel, awesome author. I’ve been a fan of Miéville since Perdido Street Station first hit the shelves, and have bought and read almost everything he’s written since then. It’s been a few years since I’ve re-read The Scar (somehow I re-read Perdido Street Station and then skipped straight to Iron Council without looking at The Scar a second time), and I probably won’t have the time to re-read and participate in the discussion this month, but if I weren’t buried in new books to review, this would be one I’d jump on.
Old Man’s War by John Scalzi for SF. My thoughts: I read Old Man’s War when it just came out and enjoyed it. Fun story, funny characters, just a neat SF novel with a great twist to it. My only quibble was that almost every character seemed to have the same personality, speech patterns, and snarky sense of humor. Then I read a few other things by Scalzi, including Agent to the Stars and a few short stories, and I was surprised to find out that many of their characters had the same personality, speech patterns, and snarky sense of humor too. After that, I just lost the motivation to read more of his works. They’re entertaining and obviously very successful, but I just end up looking for the snark rather than enjoying the story.
And in our short story discussions, we’re going to launch a neat new project soon: we’re going to read and discuss all the Nebula-nominated short stories. We did something similar last year, and it was a great success.
And that’s it for this quick look about what we’re doing at the Beyond Reality discussion group. If you’re interested in participating in any of these book or short story discussions, please drop by the group!