I’m going to start off today’s entry by announcing the titles for next month’s Book of the Month Club discussions:


by David Louis Edelman

From the publisher: “Natch is a master of biologics, the programming of the human body. He’s clawed and scraped his way to the top of the biologics market using little more than his wits. Now his sudden notoriety has brought him to the attention of Margaret Surina, the owner of a mysterious new technology called MultiReal. Only by enlisting Natch’s devious mind can Margaret keep MultiReal out of the hands of High Executive Len Borda and his ruthless armies. To fend off the intricate net of enemies closing in around him, Natch and his apprentices must accomplish the impossible. They must understand this strange new technology, run through the product development cycle, and prepare MultiReal for release to the public – all in three days. Meanwhile, hanging over everything is the spectre of the infoquake, a lethal burst of energy that’s disrupting the biologic networks and threatening to send the world crashing back into the Dark Ages.”

Published in 2006, it was named The Top SF Novel of 2006 by Barnes & Noble Explorations and also received a nomination for the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Best Novel. Infoquake was the debut novel of author David Louis Edelman, a blogger, web programmer, and John W. Campbell nominee for Best New Writer in 2007.

Discussion the week of February 23rd, when we’ll be joined by author David Louis Edelman.

The Book of Joby,

by Mark J. Ferrari

From Booklist: “The prologue of Ferrari’s first novel sweeps us into a monumental modern-day fantasy of good versus evil when Lucifer proposes a wager that he has made many times over the millennia—the same stupid bet, according to God. If he wins this time, God will have to destroy his Creation, and they will start over with what Lucifer considers an orderly, “virtuous” universe without free will. God will name a champion, who Lucifer will try to subvert by putting him to the test in the hope that he will choose, of his own free will, to follow Lucifer. Also, the Creator must “forbid all immortal beings in His service from intervening unless directly asked to do so by the candidate.” God’s champion is unsuspecting, 9-year-old Joby, a bright, imaginative boy with a loving heart. And so, the Arthurian legend is replayed over a span of 30-plus years and through incarnations of Arthur (Joby), Guinevere, Galahad, and Modred.”

Fantasy Illustrator Mark J. Ferrari’s first novel has been described as witty, thought-provoking, audacious, and unforgettable. It’s also received several requests as a potential Book of the Month Club candidate. Who says I don’t listen to the fans?

Discussion the week of March 2nd, when we’ll be joined by author Mark J. Ferrari.


Dogs, by

Nancy Kress

From the publisher: “The threat of terrorism and biological warfare become all too real in this riveting thriller when the danger comes from a family’s most cherished pets. Tessa Sanderson, ex-FBI agent, has moved to a sleepy Maryland town to escape her tragic past. When the town’s beloved dogs begin viciously attacking pet owners, federal CDC agents determine that the dogs are carrying a mutated flu affecting the aggression center of their brains, for which their is no known cure. Tessa offers to help round up and quarantine the dogs, even though some unconvinced locals are preparing to protect their pets by any means necessary. But she has another reason for getting involved—someone has been sending her threatening emails in Arabic claiming responsibility for the virus, and Tessa is resolved to go deep undercover to expose this deadly conspiracy. Combining hard science with thoughtful narrative, this chilling tale of science fiction explores the complex relationships between dogs and their owners.”

As a pet owner, the premise for this book really intrigues. As a science fiction fan, the fact that it’s written by multi-award winning author Nancy Kress (3 Nebulas, 2 John W. Campbells, a Hugo, and a Theodore Sturgeon) makes it an absolute must-read.

Discussion the week of March 9th, when we’ll be joined by author Nancy Kress.

By the way, to those of you wondering – yes, I did manage to go an entire two weeks without sugar, fruit, bread, pasta, rice, and fried foods. Not only did I get down to my fighting weight (I take on fellow writer-producer Carl Binder in a bare knuckle fight club challenge later this month) but, after those first few days of tension headaches, nausea, and feelings of utter hopelessness, I was actually upbeat and filled with boundless energy. I celebrated my remarkable achievement by eating a dozen dark chocolate-covered almonds and a bowl of Haagen Dazs sticky toffee pudding. Also, a maple truffle and two squares of Valrhona Gran Couva.

And the lone Malteaser I discovered in the back of my pantry shelf.

I finally gave in and picked up that lottery ticket my wife was insisting I get. In her mind, it makes perfect sense: Bird crapping on me + string of bad luck = Good fortune right around the corner. Of course, given my pessimistic nature, I am doubtful, even in the face of such overwhelming logic. Fondy has admonished me for being so cynical as she is of the opinion that my attitude will only serve to create negative energy. Good things will come with positive thinking! As a result, I have adopted a positive attitude and, tomorrow, plan to optimistically put a down payment down on a car. Initially, I was thinking of going with BMW but, in retrospect, decided that would be hedging my bets. No, nothing says optimism like a new Aston Martin. And it goes without saying that despite how wealthy I am, I won’t forget anyone of you – especially those of you who greatly annoyed me and I’ll finally be able to do something about.

56 thoughts on “January 21, 2009: Book of the Month Club Announcements, Guest Authors, and My Luck is About to Change!

  1. Uh oh… *shifty eyes*

    I hope you win big 😀 I adopted that attitude with my last lotto ticket and even prayed to God saying that even a little bit of the lotto money could help. Lo and behold, I actually won….38 dollars. LOL. I tried not to spend it all in one place. 😉

    *Off to track down those books*

  2. Love the sound of all three books. I like the way it’s so matter of fact now that you manage to pull in all three authors for discussion.

    I hear you need to test drive the BMW M6 if you are looking at the Aston Martin. Personally, I’d go the Aston Martin (sorry BMW, you know you’re still the clients I love the most).

    Joe wrote:

    And it goes without saying that despite how wealthy I am, I won’t forget anyone of you – especially those of you who greatly annoyed me and I’ll finally be able to do something about

    Aaaaaah, crap **deletes email accounts, logs off, packs up dogs, drives off into the distance**
    **turns around, comes back to house, picks up husband, recommences driving off into distance again**

  3. At least you don’t have to worry about income taxes if you win. That’s the biggest downside to our superdupermegabilionairoloicious lotteries here. Win a hundred mill, take a one time pay out, and that cuts it down to about half of that with the taxes taken right off the top. Not that I’d sneeze at even a cool mill. And thanks for posting the next BotM club offerings; now I can make a book run. Meantime, Living Dead is still MIA, so you’re spared one of my long winded postings this go round. One question if you’re up to it though. When does Fuel put out it’s corn soup offerings? I noticed you posted around the first of September last year. Is that the earliest it comes out, or does it come out sometime in August?

  4. I better get Old Man’s War finished so I can get started on the new selections. I’m really torn about that last selection – I just hate books (and movies) where the dog dies. I was scarred for life when I saw “Old Yeller” as a child.

    Just a thought, but maybe you should wait until you come down off of that sugar high before you make any major decisions like buying a car. 😉 Keep us posted about the lottery results and keep thinking positive thoughts.

  5. Do I “annoy” you?
    I feel like I do.
    I’m trying to shut the hell up.
    (but it’s kinda fun)

  6. Ah, fell off the wagon after two weeks, eh? But at least it was dark chocolate 😉

    Meanwhile, a scifi book recommendation – SWARM by Frank Schatzing. Science fiction with science in it! (so many scifi books are more fantasy these days)

  7. Egads! My luck just took a downhill turn. O.O Looks like I’ll be spending the weekend with my fiance’s friends and their children in a one room cottage relatively near the beach. I think I’d rather take my chances with the spiders in a tent. I suppose the plus side is that they aren’t staying at our house with their kids running amuck and breaking everything like last time.

    Any chance of borrowing one of those alien mimic devices? Pretty please?? 🙂

  8. Well, fingers crossed for you then.

    Can I borrow $5? And the keys?

    (You seriously did NOT stuff yourself with all that, did you? Gads, I’m off sugar completely just thinking of it!)

  9. Joe,

    Congratulations on the new car. I’m disappointed you won’t be going with a General Motors product, though. That’s the family business and see, I have this cavity and one more sale could mean that I don’t have to fill it myself.

    Oh, well. It’s a back tooth. No one will see it anyway.



  10. I missed your originally mentioning the bird crapping incident. It might be a powerful lesson, however, in reminding us that no matter how high we think we’ve climbed, someone (or some thing) is always above us and ready to unload should it suit them.

    And now, in an effort to make a whimsical metaphor, I sound like a pessimist, which I’m not. But perhaps that bird was a pissimist.

    Ack, and now I sound like a foul wordsmith. But then again, that bird was just plain fowl.

    Oh no! And now I sound punny, which is considered by some to be the lowest form of humor, and…, nope…..I can’t think of anything for this one.

    The End

  11. **peeks around corner**
    Ok, looks like Joe’s not here.

    If anyone finds e-versions of Infoquake and/or Dogs would you mind posting here (if that’s ok Joe) or leaving a message for me on my blog?
    I’ve found The Book of Joby on but that’s it so far.

  12. I’m gonna do my best to annoy you Mr. M… by reposting last nights comment in the hopes you’re annoyed enough to answer? Ha… fat chance! But I’m eternally hopeful and since you on the hunt for good luck, I’ll double cross my fingers you get your Aston Martin so you can take us all on a virtual ride!

    Have you hit the 2 millionth posts on your blog?

    I echo Shirt n’ Tie’s question of yesterday “What is the status of your super secret project?” Are you done yet? When will we see the fruits of your labor? Remember, months ago, you promised to reveal all when I made a guess as to what the actual project really is…! So did I guess right after all?

    Patricia Lee

  13. All three books sound great!! And I’ll be coming into some money myself here so I think when I order my textbooks, I’ll grab these three as well.

    As for the sudden sugar intake…I won’t be surprised if you wake up feeling hung over tomorrow. 😀

  14. @Sparrow_hawk – I feel the same way. Old Yeller was one I could not watch (never made it more than 10 mins into the show), so it did not scar me. It wasn’t even my sister’s incessant watching of “All Dogs Go To Heaven” that did me in…nor was it the book “Where the Red Fern Grows”…No, it was 101 Dalmatians when I was 3. lol. Stories told to us as children can have a lasting effect on us. I know how McKay feels with Moby Dick now. heh

    I avoid dog shows and stories like the plague. I even felt nauseous when my fiance forced me to see “I am Legend”, because I already knew that the dog dies in it. My fiance had to make it a point to tell me that the girls behind us were sobbing louder than I was. LOL.

    As cool as the Dogs book sounds, I just don’t think I have it in me to read it. I’m ordering the other two off of though. 😀

  15. So I was going to blow my diet last night. Had a plate of homemade pizza in hand and I turned the tv on. TLC was running a series on half-ton people. Nothing like watching a guy get 76 lbs of fat cut out of his belly to make you put down the pizza. I even got up an extra hour early to do my forms and stretches. Still sore from the reverse crunches.

    On a funny note though I was reading a magazine and came across a low calorie recipe involving blueberry balsamic vinegar. I quickly remembered your weird food purchase of the day and just about fell off my stool laughing. Thanks again.

  16. Joe,

    I used to Ultimate Fight so if you need any pointers for the bare knuckles fight, let me know. Ok, well here are some anyways: Carl is probably going to have the reach advantage so you’re going to want to stay low and get to the inside. Liver shots are very effective as is name calling. If all else fails remember my motto, “Cheat to win!” If that fails I like to fall back to my favorite technique, crying uncle!

    Speaking of chocolate, East German athletes used to down a chocolate bar the night before a competition. They’re full of calories/energy (not to mention real yummy). The trick is to fall asleep before the caffeine hits. Ya, it’s sort of a gamble. Good luck.

  17. “…I won’t forget anyone of you – especially those of you who greatly annoyed me and I’ll finally be able to do something about.”

    Cool! I’ve made an impression – no-one said it had to be a positive one…Hold up Narelle I’ve got your six!

  18. ah go on admit it, you like all the attention.

    don’t know what the hell i was thinking the other night, damn food poisioning.

    don’t know about that dog book, sounds as if there could be quite a doggy death toll. I don’t like sad animal stories, hell, i can’t even watch that episode of Futurama with Frys dog Seymour.

    The zombie book sounded fun.

    later Joe.

  19. A question recently came up regarding the end of Threads and Moebius and ‘what happened when’. I’ve always believed the last two scenes of Moebius replaced the fishing scene in Threads and everything else in Moebius except those two scenes at the end never happened in our timeline. Thus, in our timeline, the scenes would go from the conference room scene at the end of Threads to the scene in Daniel’s lab at the end of Moebius with nothing in the middle. I hoped since you’d cowritten Moebius even though you hadn’t written Threads you might know and still remember how the timelines were meant to flow. Thanks!

    And, just as an aside question, I’ve always wondered based on the references to it if someone involved with the show is a WoW player and, if so, who? Thanks again.

  20. You earned the money Joe, I say go for it! Enjoy your new car. Have fun. There is nothing wrong with earning money and spending it.

    Thanks for the book recommends.

    And thanks for not forgetting about your fans like me. 😉

  21. Hey Joe,

    I already *know* I annoy you. But you’ve forgotten one thing in your seemingly perfect plan: maybe I’ve picked up a shiny new Florida PowerBall lotto ticket and maybe I’ve had a bird crap on me and then had a string of bad luck.

    Maybe if you try to *do something* about my annoying you that I’ll be able to counter it!

    Didn’t think of THAT did you!

    You’ve been warned.

    Trish 😛

    P.S. @Sheryl and Deni B. : We ARE in Florida, right? It’s sooooooo cold! And my husband and I couldn’t figure out why the grass was white this morning. Then we realized it was frost! 😯

    I’ll be complaining right along with you in August though. 99 degree heat along with 99 percent humidty. Ugh!

  22. You should do an annoyance factor rating on all the recurring posters here then! Else we’re not fair game 😉

  23. Congrats on making the two weeks. You did exactly what I would of done, if I were brave enough to take on the challenge, and that is eat the chocolate!

    Ahhh, those of us who annoyed you, I am sure I am on that list. Oh, please, please, forgive me, lol.

  24. The Joby one sounds fun — I’ll have to see if I can acquire a copy. 🙂

    *Reads the last paragraph.*

    Or maybe I’ll just hide. XD

  25. Oh weird, I just noticed that my monster avatar changed in my last post — I suspect from the change in email. Well, since my email prob is fixed (*phew*), and I don’t think I like this meatball with crab arms, I will change it back.

    No, wait — let’s see what I get with yet a different email! 😀 Cause I have six …. (Don’t worry, I’m not going to flood your blog just to see what I get for each. :P)

  26. Bonjour Joseph =) Vous allez bien? Moi super!

    Mise à part que mon pére c’est fait rentré dedant en voiture, donc il est un peu en colére^^!

    Passer une bonne journée! Gros Bisou

  27. Aston Martin! Aston Martin!

    I mean, whatever you like m’lord… please don’t hurt me with your money.

  28. Joe,

    I’m certain that when you and Fondy (and the beasties) hit it big in the lottery you’ll be well on your way to building the orphan home for the little Hozzencockles that your good friend Aloysis is adopting.

    Best of luck. I’d go with the Aston Martin too.

  29. The new books sound intriguing, although I won’t be able to read the dog book. Old Yeller syndrome, indeed …

    I have a recommendation for you — Brandon Sanderson’s Mistborn trilogy. gives the first book 4 out of 5 stars. Their review states:

    “Brandon Sanderson matures remarkably in his second novel, a trilogy opener set in a land plagued by incessant volcanic ashfall and burdened by the millennia-long tyranny of its Lord Ruler, believed to be an embodiment of God himself. Here we see Sanderson warming to the tropes he likes best — a special class of people who possess carefully defined magic abilities; plucky heroines and roguish, devil-may-care heroes; the role of religion in how civilizations develop…”

    Good luck with the lottery!

  30. Aston all the way, get the V8 Vanquish. It is like sex on wheels, whatever that means.

  31. I really like the sound of “The Book of Joby”. I’ve never heard of it before but it sounds great! I will try to get my hands on it.

    I’ve always been torn on the positive thinking thing, myself. Stephen King’s mom told him to hope for the best and expect the worst. I’m in that boat, though, I go from bouts of severe pessimism to ludicrous optimism. Still, I wish you luck on that lottery ticket! 😉

  32. And it goes without saying that despite how wealthy I am, I won’t forget anyone of you – especially those of you who greatly annoyed me and I’ll finally be able to do something about.

    Hmmmm…..pretty sure I annoy you. Sheppard/Joe Flanigan fan – tick, multiple poster – tick, made you realise you had a smaller office than Paul – tick. Should I be worried? Nah, do your best Macaron man. 😀

    Cheers, Chev

  33. Darn you…Infoquake is the start to another series…I can’t keep up…I did get The Book of Joby since that has been on my must read list. I also picked up The Steel Remains by Richard K Morgan (his foray into fantasy and Abercrombie posted a cool review).

  34. and when are you recommending Frank M. Robinson’s The Dark Beyond the Stars for BOTM

  35. Two books of the three books are ordered. Here’s hoping I get them in time! They cost so much here in Australia so I’ve ordered them from amazon to be sent to my parents in the US. They can just stuff the books into the next package they are sending me. 😀

    Amazon recommended one called “The Name of the Wind” by Patrick Rothfuss to go with Book of Joby, so I ordered that too. Ever heard of it or the author? It looks really intriguing.

  36. But, Joseph, WHEN do we get to know what girls that wil be casted in SGU?

    I still think you have Kristin Keuk!

  37. @Alexandria: “The Name of the Wind” is great! I just finished it and can’t wait until the next one in the trilogy comes out in August. But if you really plan to complete your Book of the Month club assignments I recommend that you don’t start reading “The Name of the Wind” until you have finished them, ’cause it is awfully difficult to put down once you start. At least it was for me.

  38. Hey Narelle…I have a virus, too…and a fever since Sunday. Think I caught that from Mallozzi, too?? I wouldn’t put it past him, seeing as I’m sure I’m on his ‘most annoying’ list. 😉


    Now i know how poor Todd felt. 🙁

    *crawls back into sick bed…*


  39. Trish, 29 here last night , my heat was not working well enough , 65 in house when we got up. It was a 2 cat night, ( well it’s always a 2 cat night) they could not have gotten any closer, without being in our skin! My son who goes to FAU in Boca,asked me if we still DID live in S. Fl?!No worries, it will be 65 tomorrow!HA HA, joe, we are warming up, 75 by sat. To all the Fl. blogees- Enjoy it , soon enough it will be 95 with 100% hum. , like trish said. nite,nite to all. sheryl

  40. Hope the lotto ticket pays off! Have you ever thought of trying to do a 2 week non-carb diet? Or non – (insert nutrient/fat/radioactive material here) diet for 2 weeks? I’d never have the will power to do the 2 week sugar thing you did – though it sounds like something I should try! Maybe your ability to get through it is actually a sign of good luck!


  41. Joe, if you don’t want to post this, I totally understand, especially as I can’t vouch for the validity of it.

    I found it over at artist Adam Hughes’ deviantART journal. (I assume, being the Marvel fan you are, that you know who he is.)

    Adam asks that everyone donate a dollar to help this poor dog in Ontario:

  42. Hey Joe,

    Laptop went into meltdown after last post. As bad as it was it did look rather cool as every app in my systray and possible dialog box the could be opened, was opened.

    Ran a .bat file to weed out the Trojan and got it back to normal. It hooked into my Firefox cookie file. Can’t find any further info on what it was or where it came from. I had 5 other browser windows open at the time (all IT related) so can’t be definite on the source. Potentially just a coincidence it appeared as I clicked on that particular page …

  43. I’m SOO glad we’ll be reading Book of Joby. I was one of those recommendations when I read it sometimes during the fall. LOVED it. And when they brought in the King arthur legend I loved it even more.

    Any fantasy fan will love this book. I had absolutely no complaints with it, which is really rare. The only person I was yelling at was Joby when he was being an idiot. A writer is often told to put your character through as much pain as possible…Ferrari definitly took the advise.

    I can’t wait to ask him questions. This book moved up to my fav of all time, right behind The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley.

  44. our Joe wrote: 3
    “I finally gave in and picked up that lottery ticket my wife was insisting I get. In her mind, it makes perfect sense: Bird crapping on me + string of bad luck = Good fortune right around the corner.”

    My dear SIL (sister-in-law), who is Chinese, doesn’t buy into the bird poop lottery of good luck. However, she does buy lottery tickets – and wins! Well… as big as you can win when you match one number and the Power Ball. Enough to take us out for ice cream. That’s good enough for me!

    “No, nothing says optimism like a new Aston Martin.”

    0_0 …. Like Prince Charles drives? Coo-ool. Take us out for a spin in it?
    (I’m bettin’ this means you and Paul sold some B-I-G project, or you all just signed another contract with the franchise? Hmm?)

    “And it goes without saying that despite how wealthy I am, I won’t forget anyone of you – especially those of you who greatly annoyed me and I’ll finally be able to do something about.”

    Ho! We’d ALL better run, then. Leaves a trail of vapor leading out of town. Screeches to a sudden stop… turns on a dime and comes skidding back. Wait a minute, there are more of us than there are of you. (eyebrows wiggling) I’m just sayin’…

    (in a sing-song voice) Oh Cap’n Mallo-o-o-o-ozz-ee-ee-ee! (holding a silver platter of premier, prototype Dark European chocolate, private-labeled “Chocolat Noir.” Made ya look!)

    (stage whisper: Psst! Narelle!!! Sneak up behind him…now’s your chance!)

    Post Script:
    Tsk! “Chocolat Noir” was a) already thought of by someone else (!), and b) is either a candy bar fabriqué par Nestlé or a fundraising dinner for a children’s museum, depending on how you Google.

  45. Carl Binder

    Re: Our fight club challenge. You obviously forgot Rule #1.

    Joe Mallozzi

    Dress warmly?

    Fight! Fight! Can I sell tickets?

    I know I’m safe. I’ve never annoyed the great and powerful Joe. And I’ve also sent plenty of tribute in the form of chocolate and other goodies. Also, the Aston Martin is in the mail, Joe. It will be parked in the alley behind your office. I hope you like pink.

    Patricia (AG)

  46. I love Infoquake. I just borrowed it from the library again, and have MultiReal, the next in the series already requested. Can’t wait for the interview!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.