Archive Introduction

A brief note on how I’ve set up my reviews archive:

The tags represent where a review ran the first time around, whether online, or in print. This includes defunct magazines such as Absolute Magnitude, Science Fiction Chronicle, and Realms of Fantasy.  All reviews that appeared in those magazines can now be found here, with the exception of a very few that were lost along the way. Reviews originally posted at The Green Man Review (and its sister site, The Sleeping Hedgehog), SF Site, and Tor.com remain on those sites indefinitely.  They are uploaded here at irregular intervals after their original publication, and are reprinted for my archives with all due credit and permission.

The categories, obviously, represent where a particular item falls into the grand scheme of things. This is pretty obvious, but a few things bear a little further explanation. Historical means that the book is set in the past of a world either meant to be ours, or pretty darned close. I’ve applied the Fairy Tales/Folklore/Mythology label to anything which I feel takes inspiration or influence from those themes, and as such, this is both a specific and nebulous category, applied at my whim and discretion. The Zombies, Shapeshifters, Vampires and Superheroes are in place simply because it amuses me to do so. Lastly, I’ve also marked some books as being of greater than usual interest because of LGBTQ themes – featuring a gay or lesbian character, for instance, or dealing with gender issues, or addressing matters of alternate sexuality. In all cases, this is a work in progress, to be fine-tuned and adjusted until I’m satisfied…whenever that might be. More categories may appear, some may vanish. I welcome feedback, suggestions, and comments, especially if you feel a certain book deserves (or doesn’t!) a specific, existing, category that I’ve overlooked.

Enjoy.

Schoolbooks & Sorcery: The Lineup Announced At Last

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I’m pleased as punch and proud to announce that, with all contracts in hand, the final lineup for my upcoming YA anthology, Schoolbooks & Sorcery, is ready to be revealed. This is a project which has been in the works for quite a while, and I’m just so thrilled to share the Table of Contents with you. (Mind you, this isn’t the final -order- but this is everyone who will be in it…)

 

“Finals” by Seanan McGuire
“Protection” by Cheryl Rainfield
“The Grimoire Girls” by E.C. Myers
“Where We Come From” by David Sklar
“Bad Roommates” by Nina Kiriki Hoffman
“Dirty Deeds” by Kelly Swails
“Blood Magnolia” by Nicole Givens Kurtz
“Heart of a Fox” by Aaron Canton
“The Delicate Work of Bees” by Emily Horner
“Awaken” by Rain Fletcher
“All That Matters” by Elizabeth Shack
“The Chosen One” by Katrina Nicholson
“Fishing for the Dead” by Eric Esser
“The Nightingale and the Goblin” by Bri Boozell
I can hear some of you squealing with joy, and jumping up and down. “When will it be available?” you ask. “How can I get my hands on this?” you want to know. Well, have patience. There’s a lot of editorial fiddly bits left to be hammered into place. The next step is going to be the Kickstarter so we can acquire the funds to pay these brilliant authors what they’re worth, so keep watching this space!

Now Available: The Circlet Treasure Chest: Erotic Microfictions

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I am pleased to announce that The Circlet Treasure Chest: Erotic Microfictions for Any Occasion, is now available. You can buy it at the Circlet web site, on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other fine ebook retailers. This is a reprint collection of 50 of the many fine erotic microfictions which we’ve published on the Circlet site, many of which are no longer available there due to the site crashing last year. These microfictions cover a wide ranges of genres and sexualities, and all run under 1500 words or so, making them quick but enjoyable, even mindblowing, reads.

As the description says:

“In this collection of fifty short-short erotic tales reprinted from the Circlet Press website, authors explore all permutations of sex and sexuality, pushing the boundaries of gender, theme, genre and tone. From twisted fairy tales to science fiction adventures, these stories introduce readers to worlds of sensuality and satisfaction.

There’s a little something for everyone in this treasure chest of infinite possibility, as authors conjure up stories set in the past, present and future, as they step into fantasy realms and consort with gods, dance among the stars and dabble in dark matters. Romance, horror, mystery, action and more can be found scattered throughout these offerings, each one a full story told in less than 1500 words. And of course they all come with a healthy dose of explicit sex and sensuality, as befits a Circlet collection.

Many of Circlet’s most popular and prolific contributors are represented here, including Kannan Feng, Gayle C. Straun, Julie Cox, Andrea Trask, Cèsar Sanchez Zapata, and Circlet founder Cecilia Tan.”

As Circlet’s Microfiction Editor (on days when I remember the password to the email box), I had the honor of going through every microfiction published to a certain point to put together this collection. I’m not the first to hold this post, so I can’t take credit for originally running many of these, but my tenure is represented with some lovely selections.

I encourage you to go forth and check this out. Please buy, and please leave reviews on Amazon, Goodreads, and personal blogs.

 

 

Puxhill by Night: The Print Version

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I just wanted to add a quick update to let people know that now you can obtain Puxhill by Night as a print (hardcopy) version if you’re so inclined. For those of you who like physical books (and hopefully not to use as doorstops, paperweights, coasters, table-straighteners…)

The real benefit of a physical copy? It looks good on your bookshelf, and if you find me, I’ll sign it for you. So what are you waiting for? Go forth!

Puxhill by Night: An Audio Excerpt!

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For those who enjoy their fiction in audio form, and who like having erotica read to them, I hereby present a very special treat. Nobilis Reed, host of the Nobilis Erotica Podcast, is featuring one of the stories from Puxhill by Night in this week’s episode. Pop on over for a free rendition of the never-before-published story, “The Runic Runaway,” read by the delightful Tia Townes. Apparently, there’s also a discount code available if you listen to the podcast and decide you want to buy the book via Circlet’s website. Hey, good deal! Free audio erotica, and a discount on the book itself.

“The Runic Runaway” started life as an erotic, lesbian mystery, when editor Joselle Vanderhooft put out a call for submissions for lesbian noir erotica. I offered up a tale of the night clerk at a seedy motel who encounters a mysterious young woman with runic tattoos and gaps in her memory. While the anthology never did fully come together, the story was too good to leave sitting around, and so Joselle graciously let me take it back when I put Puxhill by Night together. It’s a fun, strange story, and I urge you all to go check it out.

Now Available: Puxhill by Night: Lesbian Erotic Urban Fantasy

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And at long last, my first book is out, and I am thrilled.

Puxhill by Night: Lesbian Erotic Urban Fantasy, is a collection of short stories, most of which have appeared in previous anthologies, several of which are brand new.

Here’s what the back cover has to say:

Welcome to Puxhill. It’s a quiet little city just a half-step off the beaten path. Everything seems normal, but the walls between worlds run thin here, and magic seeps into everyday life. Forgotten gods and faded myths live amongst the humans, and passions run deep. In Puxhill, the impossible becomes real.

In these eight erotic tales of magic, mystery, and lesbian lust, worlds collide in new and mesmerizing ways. The night manager of a seedy motel unlocks the secrets of an amnesiac girl’s past, while an angry young rocker fights for her life in a back alley. A rogue A.I. assumes human form to romance the new owner of a comic book store, shapeshifting lovers must break an ancient curse or run the risk of killing one another, and much more. Puxhill by Night collects a mixture of reprints and original stories by acclaimed author Michael M. Jones.

Includes the stories:
“The Muse’s Mask”
“Hannah and the Witch”
“Sun Chases Moon”
“Thwarting the Spirits”
“In the Service of Hell”
“The Runic Runaway”
“Doppelganger”
“The Secret Life of Ramona Lee”

 

Puxhill by Night is currently available as an ebook from Circlet, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other fine e-retailers. A paperback version will be available within the next week or so.

Electronic review copies are available. Just leave a comment here, or email me at highpornomancer@gmail.com if interested. More information to come soon.

 

 

Now Available: B is for Broken

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Today, I wish to announce the release of the B is for Broken anthology, edited by Rhonda Parrish. The second in her alphabet anthology series, this delightful collection features 26 stories revolving around the theme of broken, whether it’s people, places, items, promises, or whatever.

My story, “O is for Oneiroi” is about the city of Puxhill, and the ever-so-odd Theatre of Dreams, in which people gather to play witness to the innermost workings of the mind of a young woman known as the Dreamer. Why does she Dream, and why does she refuse to quit when it becomes too dangerous? Read, and find out….

I’ve been holding on to this story for a very long time, and I’m thrilled that it’s finally out in the wild where other people can enjoy it.

 

 

Tasty Tuesday: Chocolate Chip Cookies

Welcome to Tasty Tuesday, an experimental new feature here at Schrodinger’s Bookshelf.

I figured that since, at the moment, I don’t have anything exciting to report, I might as well share some of the stuff I love, in the hopes that it’ll brighten your days. And while you may already know I love books and cats, fewer people know I love to cook and bake. It’s a form of relaxation, a way to let the mind clear out, and a source of fun for me. There’s just something magical about the art of throwing together all sorts of ingredients and performing alchemical reactions to produce tasty treats.

And when it comes to kitchen hijinks, I love making cookies. And since so many people seem to love my cookies in return, I figured what the hey, have a recipe. Keep in mind, all recipes have come from the net and been adjusted by me to suit my tastes and needs. Original credit will be given if I still remember where it came from.

First up, what I consider to be the simplest and most representative of my repertoire: chocolate chip cookies.

INGREDIENTS:

3/4 cup unsalted butter

2/3 cup brown suger

2/3 cup granulated (white) sugar

2 tablespoons light corn syrup

1 tablespoon dark chocolate balsamic vinegar (available at certain specialty shops, such as Oliveto in Roanoke)

2 eggs

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

2 1/4 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips (milk, semi-sweet, dark, mint, this is the part where you can go wild!)

 

THE MAGIC PART:

Cream together butter, sugars, corn syrup and vinegar.

Beat in eggs, Beat in vanilla, salt, baking soda, baking powder.

Stir in flour and chips.

Here, I like to chill the resultant mixture in the refrigerator for a few hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees

Drop by tablespoons (or cookie scoop, or bare hand and rolled into little balls) on cookie sheets (I line mine with parchment paper)

Bake for 10 minutes.

Batch makes around 4 dozen, give or take.

Enjoy!

I’ll add a picture of the final result as soon as I make some more. My last batch got vaccuumed by the recipients, leaving only crumbs.

Trans Day of Visibility

So today is Trans Day of Visibility. It’s an occasion for everyone who’s trans, non-binary, genderfluid–everyone whose gender identity doesn’t necessarily play by established rules, everyone who challenges the binary norm, everyone who’s had to fight and struggle for acceptance, everyone who’s come into their own self despite all of the confusion and heartbreak and doubt, to stand up and take pride in who they are.

I think you all rock, and I support you.

I have friends and colleagues, coworkers and acquaintances, people I consider family, who identify as trans or non-binary or genderqueer, and I salute them for being awesome and brave and strong enough to show their true selves to the world, no matter how hard or scary it might be.

Be safe, my friends. Be happy. Be healthy. Be yourselves. I’ll be back here waving the pom-poms and cheering you on.

And yes, on this day, I will once again point out that I have an anthology which explores and defies gender in a collection of truly excellent fantasy stories. Scheherazade’s Facade features brilliant work by Tanith Lee, David Sklar, Tiffany Trent, Sarah Rees Brennan, C.S. MacCath, Shanna Germain, Alkiette de Bodard, Sunny Moraine, and more.  It’s something I’m proud to be associated with.SFacade_cover_1400

But this isn’t about me. This is about everyone else. This is about -you-. So I’m making two offers, right here, right now.

1) If you buy Scheherazade’s Facade, and send me proof via email to facadeantho@gmail.com or via Twitter to @oneminutemonkey, I’ll make a donation to an appropriate organization (in addition to what I already plan to donate.) This offier is open until April 7th.

2) If you’re interested but don’t think you can afford the anthology, I’ll send you an electronic copy. Just email to the address above, and give me a reason or tell me a story. Again, this offer is limited and will expire April 7th.  Depending on how many requests I get, I do reserve the right to cut it off early.  (And if you like it and want to write a review or mention it on social media, that would be awesome.)

The Long-Overdue Update: Books on Sale, Books for Review

So it seems I don’t update this thing nearly as often as I should. I apologize. I’ve been busy. With things. Yeah, that’s it…things. But I figured I should come by with an update and to remind people of certain ongoing offers.like_a_mystery_cover_510

1) First up, I have a new erotic story out. You can find “The Strange Case of Rebecca Rice” in Like a Mystery Uncovered, edited by Nikola Klaus, out from Circlet Press. Available through Circlet or other online retailers. This is a fun little tale of Puxhill’s Gaslight District. What happens when a ghost hires a private detective to solve her murder? The answers may surprise you.

 

2) Schoolbooks & Sorcery continues to trudge along at its own inexorably frustrating pace. The Table of Contents is finalized, and we’re just waiting on the last contract to be signed. I’m trying to keep one author’s agent from claiming one of my cats as part of the payment. Even I have my sticking points. So hey, watch this space for exciting news about this project soon!like-fortune's-fool-cover-draft-3

3) My most recent erotica anthology, Like Fortune’s Fool: Erotic Tales of Luck and Serendipity, is still available via Circlet or other online retailers.  While I would dearly love it if people actually bought the book, read it, and enjoyed it, but I’m happy to send out electronic copies for review, in exchange for honest write-ups at Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes and Noble, or on personal blogs. Email me at highpornomancer@gmail.com to claim a review copy now.

4) Same thing goes for my first erotica anthology, Like a Cunning Plan: Erotic Trickster Tales. If you don’t want to shell out good money for great stories, email me for a review copy. First come, first served.

4a) That’s right: FREE EROTICA IN EXCHANGE FOR REVIEWS. Good deal!

5) Last but not least, I’m ALSO happy to send people electronic review copies of Scheherazade’s Facade: Fantastical Tales of Gender Bending, Cross-Dressing, and Transformation. For that offer, email me at facadeantho@gmail.com. Again, first come, first served. This is NOT erotica, these are mainstream stories of fantasy and urban fantasy which challenge and defy gender expectations. And all I want from you are reviews and comments on Amazon, Goodreads, Barnes and Noble, or your own blogs. like-a-cunning-plan-cover-FW

6) I lied, there’s one more thing: My YA urban fantasy story, “Sea of Strangers” remains available to read, online, for free, at Inscription magazine. If you like YA, if you like urban fantasy, if you like stories about psychic teenage lesbians and their totally awesome trans girlfriends, if you like -me- then check this out. And maybe, juuuuust maybe, consider talking about it elsewhere online. Or nominating it for awards.  I hear the World Fantasy Awards ballot is still open…

In Memoriam: Pepper (2001-2015)

As always, it is with great sorrow that I announce that yet another of the Feline Advisory Committee has selected for retirement after a long and successful career.IMG_0739

Pepper, or as she was known around the office, Peppercorn Spitfire, came to us when she was but a kitten, along with her brother Salt. They were an odd pair: he was large, sweet, fearful, and dumb as a brick. She, on the other hand, was small, shrill, sociopathic, and swift. She was not gifted with people skills; if you tried to pick her up, she could rabbit-paw and shred you like a psychotic blender. She never did socialize completely…but she learned to put up with us humans and our weird ways. She formed a tight-knit yet confused bond with the elder members of the cat tribe, and spent many fine hours cuddled up to them. IMG_0030

She was the sort of cat who demanded love on her own terms. She loved to be petted and would shriek happily, but the belly–oh, that belly was a TRAP. A trap filled with fish hooks and bear traps, and some of our finest scars come from getting to close to her…like, for her annual checkup at the vet. (“Break out the riot gear,” we’d advise them. “Pepper doesn’t do ‘friendly’.”)

But she was sweet, in her own way. A constant presence. Those big blue eyes, that lovely singing voice, those beautiful winter colors… we were convinced that her ancestry held both Siamese and mountain lion. She came from the hills of SW Virginia, and was almost certainly a little inbred, as strange things go on down in that part of the country. While she wasn’t the most active of participants, we always knew she was around somewhere, watching us and probably not approving.IMG_0213

And with the rest of that older generation moved on, it was hardly surprising when she just sort of started to fade away. She went quietly, peacefully, and in the manner of her own choosing, with as little muss, fuss, and bother as possible. No final vet visit for her, just a night of cuddles. She waited until we’d gone to sleep, and then excused herself without so much as a note.

So long, Pepper. Give our regards to Salt, Stucco, Jane and Gabriel when you see them.