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Haven’t read Conquist yet?

What if an army of Spanish conquistadors, the most brutally effective conquerors in history, found their way into a truly new world beyond the New World of the Americas? Conquist tells the story of Captain Cristóbal de Varga whose drive for glory and power leads him to a place from which he can’t escape and a people he can’t conquer. Caught in a war between two eternal enemies that seem at first to be angels and demons, he must choose sides. When he loses everything he holds dear – his command, his Incan princess, his honor, his God – he needs to find a path to redemption by conquering his obsessions.

This time they’ve found a New World that refuses to be conquered.

  • Finalist, Creative World Awards (2020)
  • Finalist, Script Summit (2020)
  • Semifinalist Screencraft Horror Competition (2020)
  • Finalist Cinequest Film & Creativity Festival (2019)
  • Finalist Byron Bay Film Festival (2018)

The only way to read Conquist right now is to take out a 2020 Aurealis subscription by 30 November 2020.

You have the proof right in your hands, this man can write!… Strasser is a master… enjoy and behold what the fuss is all about.”

– Jack Dann, Nebula and World Fantasy Award-winning author and editor

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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 7

The past is a foreign country, all right, but it’s chock full of great SF&F titles to get us through Corona Days. Here are the latest offerings from the Aurealis Editors, complete with our pithy teasers.

  • Overlooked: Darkfall by Isobelle Carmody (1997). Immersive, transfixing, interwoven.
  • Underrated: The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch by Philip K. Dick (1965). Unsettling, bleak, hallucinatory.
  • Forgotten: Out of the Silence by Erle Cox (1925). Ground-breaking, best-selling, Australian.
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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 6

What better time to read? And, as such, Aurealis is continuing our deep dive into the SF/Fantasy of the past, those books that have been sitting at the back of bookshelves for ages awaiting a re-read. Why not these give a try?

  • Overlooked: The Prestige by Christopher Priest, 1995 . Imaginative, intelligent, gripping .
  • Underrated: Star Gate by Andre Norton, 1958. Engaging, robust, brisk.
  • Forgotten: The Devil’s Elixirs by E T A Hoffmann, 1815 in German, 2009 Oneworld Classics English translation. Macabre, disorienting, labyrinthine.
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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 5

The past might be a foreign country, but there are plenty of excellent Spec Fic reads to be found there, and aren’t good reads what we all need in these difficult times? Try these, and tell us what you think.

  • Overlooked: Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut (1963) funny, thoughtful, scary.
  • Underrated: Speed of Dark by Elizabeth Moon (2002) poignant, touching, powerful.
  • Forgotten: And Disregards the Rest by Paul Voermans (1993) quirky, weird, deep.
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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 4

Here are some more Aurealis reading suggestions, goodies from the past, perfect for pandemic reading – or re-reading. Some of these might take some finding, but they’re well worth it.

  • Overlooked: Wormwood by Terry Dowling (1991). Entertaining, Enthralling, Dowlingesqe.
  • Underrated: Deryni Rising, by Katherine Kurtz (1970). Thoughtful, deliberate, intricate.
  • Forgotten: The Sea and Summer by George Turner (1987). Prescient, incisive, Australian.
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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 3

Imposing Aurealis HQ is in Melbourne, Victoria, and we’re in full-on lockdown now, so quality reading is more important than ever. Here’s our next instalment in trawling the past to bring you books that you may have overlooked, others may have underrated, and we all may have forgotten.

  • Overlooked: The Luck of Brin’s Five, by Cherry Wilder (1977). Rich, detailed, knotty.
  • Underrated: Alamut by Vladimir Bartol, (1938 in Slovenian; 2004 in English). Unsettling, mesmerising, profound
  • Forgotten: Winter’s Tale, by Mark Helprin (1983). Inventive, imaginative thoughtful.
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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten 2

In our efforts to suggest titles for your CovidDays reading, here are three more books you may not have considered, along with our customarily pithy three word teasers:

Overlooked: The Book of Skulls by Robert Silverberg (1972) – disturbing, absorbing, unique.

Underrated: Ubik, by Philip K. Dick (1969) – quirky, entertaining, phildickian.

Forgotten: Synners by Pat Cadigan (1991) – punchy, dense, trenchant.

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Overlooked, Underrated, Forgotten

To help everyone find some good SF&F reads in these straitened times, the Aurealis editors will be offering an irregular series of ‘Overlooked, Underrated and Forgotten’ titles for your attention.
Here are our three for today:
Overlooked Replay by Ken Grimwood (1986). Poignant, thought-provoking, life-changing.
Underrated The Anubis Gates by Tim Powers ( 1983). Rollicking, twisty, entertaining.
Forgotten The Long Tomorrow by Leigh Brackett ( 1955). Moving, powerful, sensitive.

Contributions welcome for the threefold ‘Overlooked, Underrated and Forgotten’ list – and don’t forget your three word teasers!

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The 16 best science fiction books of all time

Isabel Cabrera created and supplied this wondrous graphic. She says:

‘With the recent success of Annihilation and Ad Astra, science fiction films are proving to be as popular as ever.

And most of the great science fiction films of the past three decades were actually based on epic science fiction books, including The Martian and Blade Runner (based on the book Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep).

To help celebrate National Science Fiction Day held on January 2 each year, Global English Editing rounded up the best sci-fi novels that deserve a spot on your bookshelf.

From Dune and its intergalactic messiah, to the earth’s final survivor in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, to the iconic Frankenstein, this list features the best science fiction books from the past 200 years. 

Over this time, science fiction has created some of the most profound, compelling and popular novels ever written. 

The key theme connecting the best of these books is how emotional and primal humans fare in the face of the powerful scientific advances they create. So, although sci-fi delves into the unknown, the stories aren’t pure fantasy: they exist in settings in some way connected to our own human experience.’

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Aurealis is looking for New Zealand SFF books to review

Are you a New Zealander? Have you published or self-published a science fiction, fantasy or horror book in the last year?

Aurealis would like to consider your book for review in its all-New Zealand issue to be published at CoNZealand. Send eBooks only in both epub and mobi format to reviews@aurealis.com.au with the subject line: Ebook for NZ special issue by 31 March 2020 at the latest.