PassingStrange-FinalCover.jpgAs promised, the wonderful Ellen Klages reads from her forthcoming book Passing Strange. The short reading starts about halfway into a story about two women living in San Francisco in 1940 and what happens to them. Our sincere thanks to Ellen for taking the time to record the reading. Passing Strange is due out on January 24.

© 2017 Ellen Klages. All rights reserved.

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PassingStrange-FinalCover.jpgAnd we're back! The bar has been re-stocked, the carpets have been steam cleaned, and we're ready to go. For the first podcast of 2017, long time friend of the podcast Ellen Klages joins us to discuss her wonderful new book, Passing Strange.

Described by the publisher like this:

San Francisco in 1940 is a haven for the unconventional. Tourists flock to the cities within the city: the Magic City of the World’s Fair on an island created of artifice and illusion; the forbidden city of Chinatown, a separate, alien world of exotic food and nightclubs that offer “authentic” experiences, straight from the pages of the pulps; and the twilight world of forbidden love, where outcasts from conventional society can meet.

Six women find their lives as tangled with each other’s as they are with the city they call home. They discover love and danger on the borders where magic, science, and art intersect.

Inspired by the pulps, film noir, and screwball comedy, Passing Strange is a story as unusual and complex as San Francisco itself from World Fantasy Award winning author Ellen Klages.

Passing Strange is due out January 24, but you can pre-order it now.

As always, we'd like to thank Ellen Klages for joining us and hope you enjoy the episode. We should be back next week with  new episode, and regularly through till Worldcon in August.

© 2017 Coode Street Productions & Gary K. Wolfe. Please do not copy or reuse without permission.

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After a well-deserved break, our intrepid podcasters are back for 2017 with renewed energy and a definite intent to stagger along till at least August and the WorldCon.  

Make sure you tune in or subscribe or listen however you do, as this week Gary and Jonathan will be talking to long-time friend of the podcast Ellen Klages about her new book, Passing Strange. Episode 295 is coming! More to come! 

While it is possible that between now and the end of the month (when I deliver the final manuscript) that I may sneak one more story in, here is what should be the final table of contents for THE BEST SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY OF THE YEAR: VOLUME 11, due from Solaris Books in April (with a spiffy cover by Domenic Harman). Congrats to one an all. I only wish I could have snuck more in - there were some terrific novellas that deserved to make the cut. Next year!

  • “Two's Company”, Joe Abercrombie (Sharp Ends)
  • “The Art of Space Travel”, Nina Allan (Tor.com)
  • “Seasons of Glass and Iron”, Amal El-Mohtar (The Starlit wood)
  • “Mika Model”, Paolo Bacigalupi (Slate)
  • “A Salvaging of Ghosts”, Aliette de Bodard (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, 01/03/16)
  • “Laws of Night and Silk”, Seth Dickinson (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, 26 May 2016)
  • “Touring with the Alien”, Carolyn Ives Gilman (Clarkesworld 115, 4/16)
  • “Red as Blood and White as Bone”, Theodora Goss (Tor.com)
  • “Even the Crumbs Were Delicious”, Daryl Gregory (The Starlit Wood)
  • “Number Nine Moon”, Alex Irvine (F&SF, 1/16)
  • “Red Dirt Witch”, N.K. Jemisin (Fantasy/PoC Destroy Fantasy)
  • “Whisper Road (Murder Ballad No. 9)”, Caitlín R. Kiernan (Sirenia Digest 125, 7/16)
  • “Successor, Usurper, Replacement”, Alice Sola Kim (Buzzfeed, 10/26/16)
  • “You Make Pattaya”, Rich Larson (Interzone 247)
  • “Foxfire Foxfire”, Yoon Ha Lee (Beneath Ceaseless Skies, March 2016)
  • “Seven Birthdays”, Ken Liu (Bridging Infinity)
  • “The Visitor from Taured”, Ian R. MacLeod (Asimov's, 9/16)
  • “Elves of Antarctica”, Paul McAuley (Drowned Worlds)
  • “Things with Beards”, Sam J Miller (Clarkesworld 117, 6/16)
  • “Spinning Silver”, Naomi Novik (The Starlit Wood)
  • “Those Shadows Laugh”, Geoff Ryman (F&SF, 9-10/16)
  • “The Great Detective”, Delia Sherman (Tor.com)
  • “Terminal”, Lavie Tidhar (Tor.com, 04/16)
  • “The Future is Blue”, Catherynne M Valente (Drowned Worlds)
  • “Everyone from Themis Sends Letters Home”, Genevieve Valentine (Clarkesworld)
  • “You’ll Surely Drown Here If You Stay “, Alyssa Wong (Uncanny 10, 5-6/16)
  • “Fable”, Charles Yu (The New Yorker, 5/30/16)
  • “The Witch of Orion Waste and the Boy Knight”, E Lily Yu (Uncanny 12)

 Now off to write the introduction to the book and assemble the Recommended Reading for the back of the book!

The end of the year is upon us, and plans are subject to change. Our intention to do a bunch of end-of-the year episodes has been set aside because of deadlines and other commitments. Instead here’s a conversation about the history of the podcast, about our most disappointing and surprising books of 2016, and much more.

During the episode we discuss the hiatus, and whether we’ll be returning in 2017 or not. The jury remains out on that, but there’ll be at least one more episode in January. Who knows beyond that? We’ll have to wait and see. Our sincere thanks to everyone who’s been a part of Coode Street this year and in previous years, and our sincerest holiday good wishes to one and all!

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It’s the end of the year and time to talk about how it went, what’s worth reading, what could end up on your holiday gift lists, and what could be avoided. To kick off Coode Street’s end of year coverage, this week Roundtablers James Bradley and Ian Mond join Gary and Jonathan to discuss books they’ve loved during the year and would recommend to you, if you’re looking for some great reading.

To help you chase down the books, our lists are below:

James’s List

  • The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead
  • Hold, Kirsten Tranter
  • Children of Earth and Sky, Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Vision, Tom King, Gabriel Hernandez Walta & Mike de Mundo
  • Barkskins, Annie Proulx
  • Goldenhand, Garth Nix
  • Into Everywhere, Paul McAuley
  • Company Town, Madeleine Ashby
  • Children of the New World, Alexander Weinstein
  • Version Control, Dexter Palmer
  • Europe in Winter, Dave Hutchinson

Ian’s List

  • Underground Airlines, Ben H. Winters
  • The Sudden Appearance of Hope, Claire North
  • Lovecraft Country, Matt Ruff
  • Vigil, Angela Slatter
  • I Am Providence, Nick Mamatas
  • My Best Friend's Exorcism, Grady Hendrix
  • What is Not Yours is Not Yours, Helen Oyeyemi
  • Martin John, Anakana Schofield
  • Solar Bones, Mike McCormack
  • The Obelisk Gate, N K Jemisin

Jonathan’s List

  • Revenger, Alastair Reynolds
  • Goldenhand, Garth Nix
  • Children of Earth and Sky, Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Bloom County XII: A New Hope, Berkeley Breathed
  • Lovecraft Country, Matt Ruff

Gary’s List

  • The Underground Railroad, Colson Whitehead
  • Revenger, Alastair Reynolds
  • Children of Earth and Sky, Guy Gavriel Kay
  • Central Station, Lavie Tidhar
  • The Dream Quest of Vellitt Boe, Kij Johnson
  • The Gradual, Christoper Priest
  • The Ballad of Black Tom, Victor LaValle

As always, our thanks to James and Ian, and we hope you enjoy the episode.

 

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This week we find ourselves talking about the resurgence of the novella in fantasy and SF, the possible reasons behind it, the changes in recent print magazines Asimov’s and Analog, the question of why short fiction seems to be moving in a digital direction whereas the novel not so much--and then we segue unconvincingly into questions of what gets reviewed and by whom, finally ending up with the problems in trying to find a workable definition of fantasy as compared to science fiction or horror.

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!

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After a week off, we return to discuss just how science fictional the recent American elections are, whether political science fiction has ever had much impact on social attitudes or public policy, what if anything SF has to offer to the disenfranchised, and the representation of women and minorities as characters as well as contributors in recent anthologies like Jonathan’s Bridging Infinity. We also offer some thoughts on the recent World Fantasy Convention, the difficulties World Fantasy seems to be facing in terms of both awards and convention attendance, and whether there are really any professional conventions left in the SF field.

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This week, from the World Fantasy Convention in Columbus, Ohio, Gary is joined by Hugo-winning David Levine (Arabella of Mars) and Andre Norton-winning Fran Wilde (Updraft, Cloudbound) to discuss various matters from Regency interplanetary adventures to bone cities to where SF titles come from,and balances between SF, fantasy, pulp traditions, and YA elements in SF’s emerging new eclecticism.

As always, our thanks to David and Fran for making the time to talk to Gary. We hope you enjoy the episode!

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The Coode Street Podcast stumbles towards its three hundredth episode with another discursive chat between co-hosts Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe. Topics this week include Bob Dylan, the Nobel and accepting awards; baseball in science fiction; and other stuff which, if we were honest, we might admit we don’t remember.

Nonetheless, time was spent and we hope you enjoy the episode. Next week, World Fantasy, Columbus, Ohio, and more!

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This week we sit down with Crawford Award winning author Kai Ashante Wilson to discuss his fiction, his career and the pros and cons of being a late starter. We focus on his multiple-award nominated novella "The Devil in America", Sorcerer of the Wildeeps, and his new book, the just-released and highly recommended A Taste of Honey.

As always, our thanks to Kai for making the time to join us. We hope you enjoy the episode!

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After last week's experiments with audio ended up in a lost recording, this week we turned to more traditional methods to make sure we'd be bringing you a new episode this week. 

For about an hour, Gary an

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d I discuss the new Best Series category for the Hugo Awards (in great and possible inaccurate detail(, trends in alternate history, and some new books that we've been reading. We also mention our next guest.

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode. See you next week!
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With apologies, there'll be no new episode this week. Gary and I sat down over the weekend and recorded a new episode where we discussed new books coming out, important writers of the 2000s and the new Hugo series award, but sadly we don't have that episode. We were trialling a new recording product, Zencastr, and something went amiss and we lost the audio. Normally we record a backup, but this time we neglected to, so it's simply gone.  We will be back again this coming weekend, though, where we'll no doubt discuss something else altogether. 

In the final of our conversations recorded during MidAmericon 2, the 74th World Science Fiction Convention, in Kansas City, we sit down with Hugo and Nebula winner Jo Walton and Tiptree Award winner Eugene Fischer for a wide-ranging and insightful discussion that touches not only upon their own fiction, but of the kind of reading that helped shape it, from Victorian literature to the SF of the ‘70s and ‘80s.

We’d like to the Jo and Eugene for making time to talk to us. As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!

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Crosstalk by Connie Willis

This week we are joined by Hugo and Nebula Award winning author Connie Willis to discuss her new novel, Crosstalk, which is just out in the UK from Gollancz and will be out in the US early next month.

The publisher describes Crosstalk like this:

Briddey is about to get exactly what she thinks she wants...

Briddey is a high-powered exec in the mobile phone industry, overseeing new products from concept ('anything to beat the new apple phone') to delivery. And she works with her wonderful partner, Trent. They've been together for six magical weeks, in a whirlwind of flowers, dinners, laughter and now comes the icing on the cake: not a weekend away or a proposal but something even better. An EDD. A procedure which will let them sense each other's feelings. Trent doesn't just want to tell her how much he loves her - he wants her to feel it.

Everything is perfect.

The trouble is, Briddey can't breathe a word of it to anyone (difficult, when the whole office is guessing) until she's had two minutes to call her family. And they're hounding her about the latest family drama, but when they find out about the EDD - which they will - they'll drop everything to interrogate her. And it might just be easier to have the procedure now and explain later.

The race is on: not just for new, cutting-edge technology, but also for a shred of privacy in a public world and - for Briddey - a chance for love at the heart of it all.

This is a brilliant, heart-warming romantic comedy from one of the wittiest and wisest of our authors. Written with a light touch and a smile, we're swept up in Briddey's romance - and into the difficulties of a world just one technological step away from our own, as technology and social media blur (or indeed remove) the line between personal and public.

In a spirited and entertaining discussion in a rather noisy hotel room in Kansas City, we discussed the novel, comedy, social media, science fiction, and much more. As always, we'd like to thank Connie for making the time to talk to us, and hope you enjoy the show.

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revenger.jpgThis week we are joined by the estimable Alastair Reynolds, celebrating the publication of his new space-pirate adventure tale Revenger and his collaboration with Stephen Baxter, The Medusa Chronicles

We also discuss the attraction many SF readers and writers have for maritime adventures, the influence and heritage of Arthur C. Clarke (as well as Asimov and Heinlein), the impact of cyberpunk on space opera and other later SF, and the question of whether the solar system is enormous enough on its own to be the setting for space operas involving thousands of worlds and habitats—as it seems to be in Revenger.

As always, we'd like to thank Al for making the time to talk to us, and we hope you enjoy the episode.  
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When Gary and I were in Kansas City for MidAmericon 2, the 74th World Science Fiction Convention last month, we were fortunate enough to sit down with a handful of really interesting people. 

One of the highlights was getting to chat with the Hugo, Nebula, World Fantasy, and Sturgeon award nomination author of “Waters of Versailles”Kelly Robson. In what was a really enjoyable conversation, we discussed Kelly’s work, starting a writing career a little later in life, and a lot more.

We’d like to thank Kelly for making time to join us and, as always, hope you enjoy the episode!

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Welcome to the seventh episode of The Coode Street Roundtable. The Roundtable is a monthly podcast from Coode Street Productions where panelists James Bradley, Ian Mond, and Jonathan Strahan, joined by occasional special guests, discuss a new or recently released science fiction or fantasy novel. With James busy with housemoving and such, we're joined by award-winning critic Gary K Wolfe.

Lavie Tidhar’s Central Station

This month we discuss Central Station, the latest book from Lavie Tidhar. It’s described by publisher Tachyon as follows:

A worldwide diaspora has left a quarter of a million people at the foot of a space station. Cultures collide in real life and virtual reality. The city is literally a weed, its growth left unchecked. Life is cheap, and data is cheaper.

When Boris Chong returns to Tel Aviv from Mars, much has changed. Boris’s ex-lover is raising a strangely familiar child who can tap into the datastream of a mind with the touch of a finger. His cousin is infatuated with a robotnik—a damaged cyborg soldier who might as well be begging for parts. His father is terminally-ill with a multigenerational mind-plague. And a hunted data-vampire has followed Boris to where she is forbidden to return.

Rising above them is Central Station, the interplanetary hub between all things: the constantly shifting Tel Aviv; a powerful virtual arena, and the space colonies where humanity has gone to escape the ravages of poverty and war. Everything is connected by the Others, powerful alien entities who, through the Conversation—a shifting, flowing stream of consciousness—are just the beginning of irrevocable change.

At Central Station, humans and machines continue to adapt, thrive...and even evolve.

If you’re keen to avoid spoilers, we recommend reading the book before listening to the episode. If you don’t already have a copy, Central Station can be ordered from:

We encourage all of our listeners to leave comments here and we will do our best to respond as soon as possible.

Next monthThe Coode Street Roundtable will return at the end of June with a discussion of Claire North’s The Sudden Appearance of Hope.

PS: During the recording Jonathan incorrectly states this is the sixth Roundtable. It is the seventh. Apologies for any confusion.
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Over the past several years we've been fortunate to record episodes of the Coode Street Podcast in front of a live audience. One of the highlights of MidAmericon 2, the 74th World Science Fiction Convention was when we got to sit down with convention Guest of Honor Michael Swanwick and award-winning author Kij Johnson to discuss the craft of short fiction. Our discussion focusses entirely on the writing of James Tiptree Jr's classic novelette "The Women Men Don't See". We think, modestly, that it's one of our very best episodes yet.  We hope you agree.

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The episode was recorded live on Friday 29 August 2016 in front of a terrific audience and was recorded by Kathi Overton and the MidAmericon 2 team. We'd like to sincerely thank Michael and Kij for their time and the effort that went into making this a success, Kathi and her team for their hard work, and everyone at MidAmericon 2 for making this possible. We would love to do more episodes on the craft of short fiction like this one, and are seriously considering it. As always, we hope you enjoy the episode.

Photo by Kate Savage. Used with permission.

(c) 2016 Coode St Productions & Gary K. Wolfe. This may not be copied or transcribed without written permission.

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