Tag Archives: Science Fiction

Wisdom From Kammbia Story Review 11: Come Home to Atropos by Steven Barnes

Steven Barnes writes a sarcastic, charming story that comes as an infomercial, designed to attract rich white folks who want to end their lives in paradise on a Caribbean island. However, the story reveals the illusion underneath. Travel to exotic lands always appears as the ultimate escape, but Come Home To Atropos pierces that fantasy quite well.

“A variety of ministers, priests, and even a rabbi are on call for your prayer needs. We accept all major credit cards, but require cosigners for other deferred payment plans, of course. Watching one final sunrise, you’ll be able to close your eyes, knowing that you ended your pain and suffering in the hands of those who have much reason to wish to assist you.  Isn’t it time?”

That is from the last paragraph of the short story and Barnes provides an example of how pleasant they can sell death  to our consumerist nature. Come Home To Atropos made me chuckle several times, and it’s a reminder that paradise always comes at a cost.   This story appears in the New Suns Anthology edited by Nisi Shawl and it is one of the best stories in a groundbreaking and thought-provoking short story collection.

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 105: The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

Have you ever read a book that you knew instantly you should have read years ago? I knew it after reading the first chapter of The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell. I was working at a mom-and-pop bookstore in Santa Fe, NM in 1996 when this novel was published. I remembered the sales rep from… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 103: Queen of Angels by Greg Bear

Queen of Angels by Greg Bear has been a book I’ve wanted to read for years. I’ve seen it at used bookstores and bought it several times intending to read the book but never get around to it until recently. Queen of Angels is an ambitious, thought-provoking science-fiction novel that deals with race, crime, religion,… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 102: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

When I heard that Ray Bradbury had passed in 2012, I realized that I had never read any of his books. Wow, that surprised me. Well, in honor of his passing, I decided to read his most popular and enduring work, Fahrenheit 451. “Do you know why books such as this are so important? Because… Continue Reading

Can an all-time favorite book be reread?

Can you one of your all-time favorite books be read more than once and is still an all-time favorite? That’s the question I’ve been coming to terms with after reading Parable of the Sower by Octavia Butler for the third time recently. Parable of the Sower is on the shortlist of my all-time favorite books… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 87: How Long ‘Til Black Future Month by N.K. Jemisin

I have a question for readers.  Has there been an author or authors you have tried repeatedly to read? N.K. Jemisin has been one of those authors for me. Jemisin has gained recognition in the science fiction and fantasy genre over the past several years with groundbreaking works like the Broken Earth and Dreamblood series.… Continue Reading

Wisdom From Kammbia Story Review 3: Speech Sounds by Octavia E. Butler

What if you lived in a society where speaking is a threat to the social order? Octavia Butler speculated on the aforementioned question in her Hugo Award-winning short story, Speech Sounds. I came across this story when it was discussed on the Novel Pairing Podcast. The discussion was interesting, and I had to read the… Continue Reading

Marion’s Favorites: Worlds of Ursula K. Le Guin Documentary

I just finished watching a documentary on Ursula K. Le Guin, the great writer of Imaginative and speculative fiction. I know that Le Guin has categorized and championed herself as a science fiction and fantasy writer.  After watching this documentary, I get why she has embraced the genre as where she belongs. However, I believe… Continue Reading