Monday, November 10, 2014

Weekly Update #167

Editor's Note

Even though my Halloween celebrations prevented me from posting the next Weekly Update, I have no regrets. Not only did we surpass 500,000 page views, we also broke our monthly page view record AGAIN. The new record is 24,095. Thanks again everybody.

Well enough chat. Make sure you check out the Links to the Multiverse. There are a lot of them from the past two weeks.

And now the news...

Out Now: A Man Lies Dreaming by Lavie Tidhar

Out in the UK now is a new alternate history novel by Lavie Tidhar called A Man Lies Dreaming. Here is the description from Amazon:

Deep in the heart of history's most infamous concentration camp, a man lies dreaming. His name is Shomer, and before the war he was a pulp fiction author. Now, to escape the brutal reality of life in Auschwitz, Shomer spends his nights imagining another world - a world where a disgraced former dictator now known only as Wolf ekes out a miserable existence as a low-rent PI in London's grimiest streets.

An extraordinary story of revenge and redemption, A Man Lies Dreaming is the unforgettable testament to the power of imagination.

So what do the reviewers think of this book? Adam Roberts of The Guardian called it a "twisted masterpiece". Meanwhile, Mahvesh Murad of Tor said "[t]here is eloquence and gravitas in the sparselness and brevity of noir fiction when it is good, and Tidhar’s is quite incredible." Finally David of Blue Book Balloon said it was "[b]y far and away the best book I've read this year."

Wow that is some high praise, although Americans might have to wait a while before we can get our hands on a copy.

Out Now: Waistcoats and Weaponry by Gail Carriger

For steampunk fans, Gail Carriger's Waistcoats and Weaponry is out as well. Here is the description from Amazon:

Class is back in session...

Sophronia continues her second year at finishing school in style--with a steel-bladed fan secreted in the folds of her ball gown, of course. Such a fashionable choice of weapon comes in handy when Sophronia, her best friend Dimity, sweet sootie Soap, and the charming Lord Felix Mersey stowaway on a train to return their classmate Sidheag to her werewolf pack in Scotland. No one suspected what--or who--they would find aboard that suspiciously empty train. Sophronia uncovers a plot that threatens to throw all of London into chaos and she must decide where her loyalties lie, once and for all. 

Gather your poison, steel tipped quill, and the rest of your school supplies and join Mademoiselle Geraldine's proper young killing machines in the third rousing installment in the New York Times bestselling Finishing School Series by steampunk author, Gail Carriger.

So what do the critics have to say? John DeNardo of SF Signal fame listed as one of the books you should check out in November. Karin Kross of Tor, on the other hand, said it wasn't the strongest entry in the series, but Karin did like the "depiction of friendship among a group of very different young women."

So not as great of praise as was received for Lavie's book, but fans of the series probably won't be disappointed,

Videos for Alternate Historians

Two trailers were the talk of the web over the last two weeks. First up is the new trailer for Assassin's Creed: Unity:
So it looks like we are going to see some time travel to World War II. Interesting. Next up, a new teaser trailer was released for Iron Sky: The Coming Race. Let's check it out:
It looks like they are going for the lizard people/hollow Earth conspiracy theories. Will it work? I guess we will just have to find out.

Links to the Multiverse

Books and Short Fiction


7 Reasons Why Steampunk Is Totally "Now" by Desirina Boskovich at Huffington Post.
Cover & Synopsis: CROOKED by Austin Grossman at SF Signal.
Cover Reveal: The Temporal Element II by Martin T. Ingham at Three Cents Worth.
Harry Harrison! Harry Harrison! (Excerpt) by Harry Harrison at Tor.
Hell with the Lid Off — The Perfect Setting for Steampunk by Gail Z. Martin and Larry N. Martin at Risingshadow.
Lisa Mantchev: "It Started with a Pocket Watch" at Amazon Blogs.
New Story Live and More by Lauren C. Teffeau (he has a story in The Change).
Review: The Allied Invasion of France 1942-1943 by Paul Robinson at The Wargamer.
Review: Curious Notions by Harry Turtledove at The Great Adventure.
Review: The Time Roads by Beth Bernobich at Mania.
Richard Ellis Preston, Jr. on Airship Versus Flying Kraken Battle Tactics: A Steampunk Primer (Plus: Bonus Deals and Content) at SF Signal.
"Ruins of Time" wins Chinese sci-fi award at English.news.cn.
Table of Contents: CRANKY LADIES OF HISTORY Edited by Tehani Wessely and Tansy Rayner Roberts at SF Signal.
Up Now–The Mind’s Eye by Chris Nuttall at The Chrishanger.
The Well-Mannered Woman’s Guide to Kicking Ass Whilst Wearing a Corset by Gail Z. Martin at Dwelling in Probabilities.

Comics

Comic Review & Interview: Creature Cops: Special Varmint Unit by Bob Leeper at Nerdvana.

Counterfactuals, History and News

5 Backup Plans That Would Have Changed Modern History by Evan V. Symon at Cracked.
11 Intriguing Ways World War I Could Have Turned Out Differently by George Dvorsky at io9.
Alternate History: What If Catherine of Aragon Agreed to the Divorce With Henry VIII? by Alexandria Ingham at Wizzley.
Bob Dylan Wanted to Make an Album With the Beatles and Rolling Stones by Andy Greene at Rolling Stones.
Did A Pope And An Emperor Team Up To Erase 300 Years Of History? by Esther Inglis-Arkell at io9.
Friedman's Counterfactual Comparison of ISIS and Vietnam by Gavriel D. Rosenfeld at The Counterfactual History Review.
How One Soviet Submarine Commander Averted World War III by Mark Strauss at io9.
It's Looking More and More Likely That We Live in a Multiverse by Annalee Newitz at io9.
Ned Kelly Under the Microscope unravels bushranger myths by Cris Kennedy at The Sydney Morning Herald.
The One Basic Fact About History That Time Travelers Always Forget by Annalee Newitz at io9.
The Plots to Destroy America by Kurt Eichenwald at Newsweek.
Revealed: How the Soviets Planned To Go To War with America's Navy by Sam Roggeveen at The National Interest.
Vladimir Putin's Batshit Crazy Attempt To Create an Alternate History by George Dvorsky at io9.
What if ...? by Ron Eachus at Statesman Journal.
What Would Two Floridas Look Like? by Dallas Jensen at Slate.
Who Would Have Health Insurance if Medicaid Expansion Weren't Optional by Kevin Quealy and Margot Sanger-Katz at The New York Times.

Film and Television

1983: The Brink of Apocalypse at Far Future Horizons.
Just How Different Was Nolan's Third Batman Movie Supposed To Be? by Kit Simpson Browne at Movie Pilot.
Man Conquers Space by Alex Michael Bonnici at Far Future Horizons.
Review: Doctor Who, S8, E10: In the Forest of the Night and E11: Dark Water at Geek Syndicate.
Will 'Marco Polo' Be Netflix's 'Game of Thrones'? by Laura Rosenfeld at Tech Times.
You Have Chosen…Poorly: A Ranking Of Alternate Horror Film Endings by Mark Strauss at io9.

Games

'Dust.Evolution' Announced, Seeks Crowd Funding - Trailer by Rainier at Worth Playing.
Why Gandhi Is Such An Asshole In Civilization by Luke Plunkett at io9.

Interviews

Richard J. Evans at  Dublin Festival of History 2014.
Nicola Griffith at Tor.
Dan Jones at Word & Film.
Alison Morton at Unusual Historicals.
Diana M. Pho at Tor.
Anne Valente at The Collagist.

Podcasts


The 17 Greatest Movie Scenes Deleted from History at Cracked.
Dissecting Worlds Series 9 Episode 2: Game of Shadows (of the Apt) at Geek Syndicate.

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Matt Mitrovich is the founder and editor of Alternate History Weekly Update and a blogger on Amazing Stories. Check out his short fiction. When not writing he works as an attorney, enjoys life with his beautiful wife Alana and prepares for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. You can follow him on Facebook or Twitter.

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