News & Blog

Rat Queens, Vol. 5: The Colossal Magic Nothing

Rat Queens, Vol. 5: The Colossal Magic Nothing (Rat Queens, #5)Rat Queens, Vol. 5: The Colossal Magic Nothing by Kurtis J. Wiebe
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Huh. That was weird. It definitely explained the time jump that confused and frustrated me in the previous volume, as well as answering my questions about whether the cliffhanger ending of volume 3 would ever be resolved. But I’m not sure I liked it.

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Rat Queens, Vol. 4: High Fantasies

Rat Queens, Vol. 4: High Fantasies (Rat Queens, #4)Rat Queens, Vol. 4: High Fantasies by Kurtis J. Wiebe
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Rat Queens are off on a new adventure, trying to make money by taking jobs from the local “quest board.” Some time has passed since the end of volume 3, and therein lies the main problem I had with this volume. The cliffhanger ending of volume 3, which saw Hannah imprisoned in an interdimensional jail and confronted with a literal demon from her past while the rest of the Rat Queens went their separate ways, remains unresolved. When volume 4 picks up, everyone is back together and all is apparently forgiven, leaving the reader with no idea what happened. Even Hannah’s father, Gerard, is out of prison now and living with them (which, incidentally, leads to one of the funniest sequences in the book). I found myself both confused and frustrated by this time jump. The characters, the D&D-on-crack world, and the snarky, raunchy dialogue remain as enjoyable and engrossing as ever, but my frustration lingered. Another issue I had was that Owen Gieni’s art just didn’t do it for me. His style is way too cartoonish for my taste, and I barely recognized some of the characters. I’m still enjoying the series, but I’m starting to worry that it’s all falling apart.

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Rat Queens, Vol. 3: Demons

Rat Queens, Vol. 3: DemonsRat Queens, Vol. 3: Demons by Kurtis J. Wiebe
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The exploits of your favorite fantasy adventuring team continue in this volume, in which Hannah goes back to her alma mater, the succinctly named Mage University, to break her father out of prison. Unfortunately, things go from bad to worse, culminating in long-buried secrets coming to light and a surprisingly emotional confrontation among the Rat Queens. Will anything be the same after this? Kurtis J. Wiebe’s writing is as sharp and raunchy as ever. The only drawback for me is Tess Fowler’s art, which I don’t like as much as the series’ original artist Roc Upchurch’s. I found it too cartoonish for my taste, but it wasn’t enough of a distraction to change my rating to anything less than five stars.

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Boskone 56 Schedule

The final schedule for Boskone 56, February 15-17, 2019 in Boston, is available! Here is where you will find me:


The Other Others in Urban Fantasy
3 PM, Harbor II

Urban fantasy sections in bookstores are filled with zombies, werewolves, and especially vampires (sparkly and otherwise) almost to the exclusion of other entities. Indeed, too many times those creatures define urban fantasy. But there are a plethora of other fantastical beings from the myths and legends of Europe — and every other continent. Authors like Seanan McGuire and Laura Anne Gilman revel in the variety, using it to populate the back streets of their chosen cities. Let’s join them (and our panelists) to explore the road less traveled.

Elwin Cotman, Nicholas Kaufmann, Clea Simon, John Langan, Leigh Perry (M)

The Life Cycle of a Book
4 PM, Lewis

Most of us just see the finished product on the shelf. However, there are lots of little (and big) steps associated with getting the book to the store. What’s the life cycle of a book, from submission to publication? It’s not as simple as “the author writes it, then the publisher prints it.” What are the direct, indirect, and associated steps involved in the production and publication process — from editing to marketing, selling, reviewing, reprinting, and more?

Gene Doucette, Andrea Corbin (M), Nicholas Kaufmann, LJ Cohen, Joshua Bilmes


Reading by Nicholas Kaufmann
3:30 PM, Griffin

Kaffeeklatsch — Horror in the Afternoon!
4 PM, Galleria – Kaffeeklatsch 1

Paul Tremblay, Nicholas Kaufmann


The New Doctor — Who?
11:00 AM, Marina 4

Back in 1981, Tom Baker suggested his successor be female. Almost 40 years later, we finally have Jodie Whittaker portraying the Thirteenth Doctor. How does her interpretation of the iconic Time Lord stand out from those of her predecessors’? After all the hype, has the first female Doctor actually changed the dynamics of the show? What are the high and low points of her tenure so far? Has the writing quality kept pace with this significant new development?

Dana Cameron, David McDonald, Jeanne Beckwith (M), Kenneth Schneyer, Nicholas Kaufmann

How to Survive a Horror Story
12:00 PM, Marina 4

Who knows better than a horror writer how to survive a horror story? Join he fun and “lively” conversation as our panelists discuss scenarios from horror novels and films as if they themselves were characters within the scenes. Will their special authorial insights keep them safe? Will they split up to look for the cat? What are they willing to do to survive (relatively) intact? Who dies first? Who lives to tell the tale?

Marshall Ryan Maresca (M), Barry Lee Dejasu, Nicholas Kaufmann, Suzanne Reynolds-Alpert, Clarence Young

Looking forward to seeing you there! If you have books you’d like me to sign, please bring them along. I’m always happy to sign books!