- Becky Chambers, The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet. I’ve heard a lot of buzz about this originally self-published space adventure novel, and the preview seems both readable and pleasant: classic space opera tropes but with a light, contemporary feel.
- Terry Pratchett, The Shepherd’s Crown. Terry Pratchett’s last Discworld novel is pretty much by definition a gift to be treasured. I can’t imagine this is the best place for someone to begin the series, but to a fan, the opening scenes call to mind many warm and happy memories.
- John Scalzi, The End of All Things. This is the latest in the Old Man’s War series, and as usual, it seems to be compulsively readable stuff.
- Christopher Moore, Secondhand Souls. The sequel to Moore’s very funny Grim Reaper comedy, Dirty Job, this seems like fun too, though I’m sure the experience of reading the preview benefits from also having read the first book.
- Tom Scioli, American Barbarian. This seems to be a parody of 80s cartoons like Thundarr the Barbarian, but with more than a hint of the 70s comic Kamandi to it as well. Like its source material, it appears to be delightfully unsophisticated yet strange.
- Stefan Petrucha, Deadpool: Paws. Deadpool first appeared well after I’d stopped keeping track of the Marvel Universe, and I’ve been neither here nor there about the Deadpool comics I’ve read. But I did like a couple of the jokes in the opening chapters of this prose novel, e.g. the bit about “Goom hungers!”
On October 1, I compiled the usual stats on board games that have shown large positive movement within BGG‘s top 500 in the past quarter. Standard caveats about recategorization, new editions (etc.) apply.
Fast, positive movers among 'Board games': 083 (+105) Patchwork 097 (+259) The Voyages of Marco Polo 163 (+337) Codenames 167 (+220) La Granja 262 (+238) Forbidden Stars 277 (+118) Orléans 299 (+201) Spyfall 307 (+159) Elysium 324 (+144) Star Wars: Armada 396 (+104) Specter Ops Fast, positive movers among 'Strategy games': 120 (+380) Forbidden Stars 186 (+314) Fire in the Lake 298 (+202) Summoner Wars: Alliances Master Set Fast, positive movers among 'War games': 069 (+431) Churchill 092 (+408) Nexus Ops 220 (+280) Triumph & Tragedy 231 (+269) Dungeon Command: Tyranny of Goblins 267 (+233) Enemy Action: Ardennes Fast, positive movers among 'Family games': 094 (+406) Diamonds 151 (+349) Broom Service 162 (+338) DC Comics Deck-Building Game: Heroes Unite 180 (+320) Steampunk Rally 189 (+311) OddVille 209 (+291) Isle of Skye: From Chieftain to King 213 (+287) Flick 'em Up! 221 (+279) Discoveries 261 (+239) Tiny Epic Galaxies Fast, positive movers among 'Collectible games': 002 (+498) Summoner Wars: Alliances Master Set 017 (+483) Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn 027 (+473) Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Wrath of the Righteous – Base Set 044 (+456) Vs. System 2PCG 045 (+455) Epic 055 (+445) Star Trek Deck Building Game: The Next Generation – The Next Phase 095 (+405) Ortus Regni 117 (+383) Krynea Battlefield 153 (+347) Guerra De Mitos II Fast, positive movers among 'Thematic games': 041 (+459) Cthulhu Wars 120 (+380) Witness 155 (+345) Flick 'em Up! 178 (+322) Legendary Encounters: A Predator Deck Building Game 218 (+282) Onward to Venus 224 (+276) Ancient Terrible Things 246 (+254) Magic: The Gathering – Arena of the Planeswalkers 247 (+253) Hostage Negotiator 262 (+238) Blood Rage 277 (+223) Mistfall 282 (+218) Star Trek Deck Building Game: The Next Generation – The Next Phase 298 (+202) NOIR: Deductive Mystery Game