Thursday, February 25, 2010

Frankie Pickle and the Closet of Doom by Eric Wight

I was drawn to the book by the cover with Frankie looking like a miniature Indiana Jones, backed up by his tiny faithful dog Argyle.

As it turns out Franklin Lorenzo Piccolini aka "Frankie Pickle" adventures all take place in his vivid imagination, much like James Thurber's Walter Mitty or Bill Watterson's Calvin of Calvin and Hobbes.

Frankie's most challenging adventure is to live in his own bedroom once his mother gives him permission to forget about trying to keep it clean. Slowly the toys, the comics, and the filthy piles of clothing and food take over.

The worst mess is in his "closet of doom" which he has filled with everything that could fit in before he stopped trying to "clean".

Frankie decides not to bathe and soon even the family dog cannot stand to be near him.

One night as he is sleeping, it all comes tumbling down on Frankie and he is forced to do the unthinkable--clean his room for real.

Frankie Pickle is a wonderful combination of comic strip paneled chapters and delightfully illustrated 'real life" chapters. Wight even provides sample pages for drawing Frankie and Argyle so the reader can write their own Frankie Pickle adventures.

The second Frankie Pickle tale has just been published "Frankie Pickle and the Pine Run 3000".

Find out more about Frankie and Eric at his Simon and Schuster page.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Forget Amazon, here's where to buy Science Fiction Online

Since Amazon has shut down alot of authors, including TOR books, with its embargo or whatever of Macmillan Publishers over eBook pricing, you may, like me, be looking for alternative places to buy the latest science fiction.

I have found a few science fiction specialty stores on the web. While do ship and they have presences on the web, their sites do not tend to be great for browsing for new titles.

These specialists in science fiction have a great advantage over Amazon in that they have deep knowledge of the literature and they will help you find what you're looking for, and can recommend more authors you may not know about.

If you're looking for new science fiction and fantasy as eBooks, try the Book Cafe. This an an author run site, no middle personages to get between you and your books.

Minneapolis bookstore Uncle Hugo's has a large selection. They print newsletters which list their incoming titles, so look for that on the sidebar as "browse new books".

The Dark Carnival Bookstore in Berkeley, CA is packed with science and fantasy new and old. Their site lists featured new items, and the store owners will certainly let you know if they have what you're looking for that isn't listed. They have adult, YA and children's titles, so ask if you don't see what you're looking for. Click on the Recommended link in the sidebar.

Happy reading. If you have online science fiction bookstore recommendations I didn't find, let me know, I'll add them to the list!