No life on Mars

The Great Beyond: Mars is going down!

Some breaking news from The Great Beyond blog post linked above:

"NASA experts say the risk of an asteroid smashing into Mars is higher than they previously thought. Last week the agency said the probability of asteroid 2007 WD5 hitting the red planet was 1.3%. After further number crunching it now says it is more like 3.9% (press release). Although this is an unusually high percentage, it is still most likely that WD5 will miss the planet."

The Great Beyond post links to various interviews and articles about this prospect, including a NASA animation.

An expert selects crime fiction

Euro Crime: Top Ten for 2007.

At the link above, Karen Meek, Euro Crime suprema, lists her top ten reads of 2007, with links to reviews of those books she’s reviewed. Whether you are new to the genre or an old hand, it is well worth checking out Karen’s recommendations for good reads, as she’s the world expert on European crime fiction. I am certainly taking my own advice in this case, as the books Karen highlights that I’ve read (about half of them) are all very good indeed – the rest are now on my own reading list.

Karen writes that she’ll soon be posting the 2007 choices of her Euro Crime reviewers (who include me). Watch this space.

January Big Thrill is out

The January edition of The Big Thrill, the magazine of the International Thriller Writers, is now out. As well as all the usual articles, a new regular feature begins this month called Between The Lines, "an in-depth look at the business of writing thrillers", this month an interview with David Morrell (a recent book of his, Creepers, is discussed here. I read the book recently but found it too disappointing to review).

The first highlight of the new issue is implied to be a review of Tom Cain’s The Accident Man – which turns out to be a short paragraph about the book. If you’d like to read a fuller review, mine can be read here (at Euro Crime).

The other featured reviews are also limited to short, promotional paragraphs, so you might find the interviews are a more rewarding read, for example this one, in which Linda Richards talks about her latest novel (with a wonderful cover) "Death was the Other Woman".