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Reviewed on 12/13/2004 — They're Made Out of Meat by Terry Bisson “This candy is dandy...: ...and even liquor couldn't be quicker than this little gem -- a little Douglas Adams, a little Roald Dahl.”

Reviewed on 12/13/2004 — A Dry, Quiet War by Tony Daniel “Contemplate your good fortune: There are a few stories that, when you have finished reading them, force you to pause and contemplate your good fortune: you've witnessed something great, and your life is now richer than it was. Dan Simmons' Hyperion was such a work for me, and so is 'A Dry, Quiet War.' I commend it and the other stories in The Robot's Twilight Companion wholeheartedly to fellow readers.”

Reviewed on 12/13/2004 — Our Lady of American Sorrows by Jay Lake “Beautifully crafted: Reading this story, you can tell why Jay Lake won the 2004 Campbell Award: 'Our Lady of American Sorrows' is beautifully crafted, evoking a reality both familiar and vividly strange. But Lake's touch is light and deft, leaving much of that world just guessed at -- and in guessing, the reader walks in the very shoes of the 16-year old boy at the center of the story, learning to see his world for the first time. Great writing.”

Reviewed on 12/13/2004 — Drifting Off the Coast of New Mexico by Steven R. Boyett “Dust off the Mark Twain: The literary conceit at the heart of this story gives an interesting twist to a Butch and Sundance-style plot. If it prompts you to dust off the collected works of Mark Twain, well, that's a reward in itself.”

Reviewed on 12/12/2004 — Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson “Top Ten First Chapters: Others will have other reasons to recommend this excellent Neal Stephenson novel, but for my money, this book rivals the first chapter of William Goldman's The Princess Bride and the opening scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark for the best openings ever. Read for yourself.”