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The Engine of Recall Paperback – July 12, 2006


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 271 pages
  • Publisher: Red Deer Press; 1 edition (July 1, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0889953457
  • ISBN-13: 978-0889953451
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,433,668 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"Delightful and engaging, both intellectually and viscerally: a superb achievement." --Kirkus on Ventus (starred review)

"With its 10 powerful short stories, The Engine of Recall serves as an ideal introduction to the talents of Toronto science fiction writer Karl Schroeder. While his novels have met with considerable success (Permanence was awarded the Aurora Award and his first novel, Ventus, was named a New York Times Notable Book), his shorter works have not been collected prior to this volume, edited by Robert J. Sawyer for his eponymous imprint. . . . . . The disparate stories are united by the keen edge of Schroeder’s writing and the fundamental humanism at the stories’ core. Schroeder writes with a terse economy of language, a precision that one expects from the genre but rarely encounters. Few words are wasted, and the language underscores the close attention to characterization." -- Quill & Quire

About the Author

Karl Schroeder was born to a in Brandon Manitoba. His family is part of a Mennonite community that has lived in southern Manitoba for over one hundred years. Karl moved to Toronto to pursue a writing career. His novel Permanence won the 2003 Aurora Award for best Canadian SF novel. Karl is married with a daughter and he divides his time between writing fiction and consulting - chiefly in the area of Foresight Studies and technology.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Richard R. Horton on June 1, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Canada has been the source of a great deal of intriguing SF over the past decade or so, much of it at least moderately "hard SF." One of the most rigorously "hard SF" writers to come out of this "Canadian Renaissance" is Karl Schroeder, author of the impressive novels Ventus, Permanence, and Lady of Mazes. Now Schroeder has published his first story collection, The Engine of Recall.

The first thing that struck me about the Table of Contents was the relative unfamiliarity of most of the stories. This was a source of mild embarrassment to me, as I consider myself generally very up to date on short SF. It turns out that one engine of the "Canadian Renaissance" I mentioned above has been some Canadian outlets for SF, most notably the magazine On Spec and the anthology series Tesseracts, that to some extent slip under the radar of often US- and/or UK-centric SF readers. So Schroeder managed to publish a passel of first-rate stories without generating quite the buzz he deserved -- though one story here, "The Dragon of Pripyat", was reprinted in Gardner Dozois' The Year's Best Science Fiction, Seventeenth Annual Edition, and another, "Halo", was chosen for David Hartwell's anthology The Hard SF Renaissance.

Well, that's one reason for story collections -- to bring to light stuff that might have been missed on first publication. And the stories here are well worthy of this exposure. Take "The Dragon of Pripyat." Gennady Malianov is a morose Russian (or Ukrainian) man hired to investigate a threat to release radioactive material from the remains of Chernobyl. Malianov heads directly to the ghost town of Pripyat. There he meets a curious squatter, and also encounters the mysterious "dragon.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Colin P. Lindsey VINE VOICE on May 16, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I am not sure why I originally ordered this book from Amazon. I had never read Karl Schroeder before and I normally steer clear of short story collections. I have always preferred novels to story collections, probably because a good short story often leaves you wanting more. Despite my mystification on why I got this book let me emphatically say that I am glad I did so!!!

Wow, there are ten perfect stories here. Each one is a wonderful read, and while a few did leave me wanting more (espcially the two featuring Gennady, an Ukrainian arms inspector) each story was like a perfect jewel, a perfect encapsulation of a story and just the right length. I started reading this last night because I am expecting an overnight delivery of the next Jack Reacher novel today and I didn't want to be stuck in another novel when it arrives shortly. I thought some short stories were the perfect solution to while away an hour before falling asleep. It didn't quite work out that way....I wound up reading this collection, start to finish in one go last night. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes science fiction or likes near-term speculative fiction. The stories span a time scale from the near-term future to the far future and are rife with striking ideas that leave you thinking. It is simply an excellent book and I am going to start ordering the novels this author has written based upon the strength of his short stories.
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Format: Paperback
Overwhelming circumstances - they're usually left to superheroes and the supernatural. "The Engine of Recall" is a compilation of stories about people who don't usually face these odds - the every day average Joe and Joanna. Pitting these normal humans against insurmountable odds, Schroeder's stories come off as human even in the strange foreign alien worlds that they must trudge through to get through their lives and survive. "The Engine of Recall" is a top pick for science fiction fans and community library collections catering to them.
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More About the Author

I was born September 4, 1962 in Brandon Manitoba. My family are Mennonites, part of a community which has lived in southern Manitoba for over one hundred years. I am the second science fiction writer to come out of this small community -- the first was A.E. van Vogt!

I moved to Toronto in 1986 to pursue my writing career. I married Janice Beitel in April 2001 and our daughter Paige was born in May 2003.

I divide my time between writing fiction and consulting--chiefly in the area of Foresight Studies and technology.

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