Science fiction and fantasy                                            


Film and Book Reviews for 2004

Films released in 2004

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban poster    
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban directed by Alfonso Cuaron
4 star rating

Will Harry's third year at Hogwarts see his worst fears realised?
Hellboy poster    
Hellboy directed by Guillermo del Toro
4 star rating

Big, red, hellish and likes kittens seeks similar for warmth and friendship.
Howl's Moving Castle directed by Hayao Miyazaki
4 star rating

A girl is cursed with old age, and a wizard has no heart in this animated fantasy.
I, Robot poster    
I, Robot directed by Alex Proyas
4 star rating

Robots are all the rage in the future.
Spider-Man 2 poster    
Spider-Man 2 directed by Sam Raimi
4 star rating

The web-slinger gets ready to throw in the red and blue suit.
The Stepford Wives poster    
The Stepford Wives directed by Frank Oz
4 star rating

This update of Ira Levin's novel explores the sinister side of housework.
Appleseed poster    
Appleseed directed by Shinji Aramaki
3 star rating

Is it time for mankind to make way for a new race?
The Chronicles of Riddick poster    
The Chronicles of Riddick directed by David Twohy
3 star rating

The anti-hero Riddick returns to fight the Necromongers.
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow poster    
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow directed by Kerry Conran
3 star rating

Steampunk has never looked so glamorous.
The Day After Tomorrow poster    
The Day After Tomorrow directed by Roland Emmerich
3 star rating

Climate change sparks a series of disastrous weather events, heralding the dawn of a new ice age.
Blade Trinity poster    
Blade Trinity directed by David S. Goyer
2 star rating

The third film in the Blade series sees the hybrid vampire slayer pitted against Dracula himself.
Van Helsing poster    
Van Helsing directed by Stephen Sommers
2 star rating

The legendary monster hunter takes on Dracula.

Books published in 2004

Nylon Angel poster    
Nylon Angel by Marianne de Pierres
5 star rating

When you've met Parrish, you'll know why she's so hard to put down.
Code Noir poster    
Code Noir by Marianne de Pierres
5 star rating

Parrish Plessis is back, and she has already broken her resolution not to hit anyone.
Heat Stroke poster    
Heat Stroke by Rachel Caine
5 star rating

In the second book in the Weather Wardens series, Joanne Baldwin faces a threat that could destroy the Djinn.
Grim Tuesday poster    
Grim Tuesday by Garth Nix
5 star rating

The Keys To The Kingdom continues as Arthur Penhaligon takes on the keeper of the second key.
Going Postal poster    
Going Postal by Terry Pratchett
5 star rating

Moist von Lipwig delivers the Discworld post.
The Walking Dead: Miles Behind Us poster    
The Walking Dead: Miles Behind Us by Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard and Cliff Rathburn
4 star rating

Rick Grimes and his band of survivors continue their search for safety in a world taken over by zombies. This graphic novel is the second in the series, The Walking Dead.
Thief of Lives poster    
Thief of Lives by Barb and J. C. Hendee
4 star rating

In this sequel to Dhampir, it turns out the Noble Dead are not always so noble.
A Hat Full of Sky poster    
A Hat Full of Sky by Terry Pratchett
4 star rating

Tiffany Aching returns to earn her place amongst the witches.
Eve poster    
Eve by Aurelio O'Brien
4 star rating

This silly yet incisive satire mixes up the primordial soup.
Undead And Unwed poster    
Undead And Unwed by Maryjanice Davidson
4 star rating

A fashionable secretary wakes in a morgue to discover she is one of the undead.
Dead Witch Walking poster    
Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
4 star rating

Rachel Morgan has to figure out who she can trust if she is to survive more than a few days as a supernatural bounty hunter.
Dreamers poster    
Dreamers by Christian R. Bonawandt
3 star rating

You wake up, but are you still in a dream world?
Market Forces poster    
Market Forces by Richard Morgan
3 star rating

Chris Faulkner is an executive in a cut-throat corporate world where just getting to work can be a matter of life and death.
The Autumn Castle poster    
The Autumn Castle by Kim Wilkins
3 star rating

The first book in the Europa Suite is a dark and unusual fairytale.
Blood And Memory poster    
Blood And Memory by Fiona McIntosh
3 star rating

The second volume in the high fantasy series The Quickening.
The Walking Dead: Days Gone Bye poster    
The Walking Dead: Days Gone Bye by Robert Kirkman and Tony Moore
3 star rating

Rick Grimes wakes up in hospital to find the world he knew taken over by hordes of zombies. The first graphic novel in The Walking Dead series.
1602 poster    
1602 by Neil Gaiman, Andy Kubert and Richard Isanove
3 star rating

Why are the superheroes and villains of the Marvel universe turning up in Elizabethan times? A graphic novel.
Wolfblade poster    
Wolfblade by Jennifer Fallon
2 star rating

The first episode of the Wolfblade Trilogy follows Marla Wolfblade as she learns to survive politics and intrigue in this high fantasy that forms part of the Hythrun Chronicles.
The Well of Yearning poster    
The Well of Yearning by Caiseal Mor
2 star rating

Practical Normans and naive monks face malevolent Otherworld creatures in medieval Ireland. The first book in the Wellspring trilogy.
Jumping Jack Flash poster    
Jumping Jack Flash by M. A. Keesee
2 star rating

Androids and murder in the time of Sherlock Holmes.
Echoes of a Distant Storm poster    
Echoes of a Distant Storm by Wendy Simpson
2 star rating

Two young people face the ultimate evil in this debut fantasy.
Bridge of Souls poster    
Bridge of Souls by Fiona McIntosh
2 star rating

The final instalment of The Quickening.
The Iron Tree poster    
The Iron Tree by Cecilia Dart-Thornton
1 star rating

A young man whose ancestry is a mystery falls in love with a cursed woman.
Merlin the Sorcerer poster    
Merlin the Sorcerer by William P. Burch
1 star rating

An archaeologist literally journeys to the Arthurian past in this time travel adventure.

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Unreviewed books

Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell cover    
Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke
Most of the magic has left England, until two magicians appear in the nineteenth century. But they become rivals.

Blood Rites cover    
Blood Rites by Jim Butcher
The sixth book in the Dresden Files.

Dead To The World cover    
Dead To The World by Charlaine Harris
When Eric Northman turns up naked and missing his memory and his usual personality, Sookie feels bound to take him in, even though she knows it will get her in trouble. The fourth in the Sookie Stackhouse series.

Predator's Gold by Philip Reeve
The second book in the Hungry City Chronicles.

The Knight cover    
The Knight by Gene Wolfe
A young man travels from America to a strange world of knights, magic, giants, honour, and seven levels of reality. Book one of The Wizard Knight.

Smoke And Shadows cover    
Smoke And Shadows by Tanya Huff
An actress dies on the set of a vampire TV show, and an aspiring producer notices strange shadows that may not be of this world. The first book in the Tony Foster series.

Brilliance Of The Moon cover    
Brilliance Of The Moon by Lian Hearn
Otori Takeo prepares to go to war to secure his lands and those of his beloved Kaede. But a prophecy of battles hangs over him.

Dime Store Magic cover    
Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong
Sorcerers want to take custody of an adolescent witch, and they are prepared to fight dirty. But Paige Winterbourne, her guardian, is determined to protect her charge at any cost.

Unreviewed films

Shaun Of The Dead cover    
Shaun Of The Dead directed by Edgar Wright
A man who is stuck in a timewarp and a dead-end job tries to win back his girlfriend during a zombie outbreak.

AVP: Alien vs. Predator cover    
AVP: Alien vs. Predator directed by Paul W.S. Anderson
A team of cannon fodder investigate an unusual ancient structure in Antarctica, and get caught up in a battle between advanced alien races.