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Diabolical Plots is a Sci-fi/Fantasy zine that covers virtually every media related to the genre from books to movies to video games. This site also features regular content related to the craft of writing. Take a look around!

20 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

Anime Review: Hakata Tonkatsu Ramens

Anime Review: Hakata Tonkatsu Ramens

hakataramens

Hakata Tonkatsu Ramens has a ridiculous premise, but once you buy into it, it’s a lot of fun. Hakata City, within the Fukuoka Prefecture, is city so populated with hitmen and other criminal elements that they’ve essentially organized into businesses. Not public facing, mind, but this is the kind of show where in the first episode a hitman finds out someone else has already killed his target, because, well, hitmen are just that easy to hire. (I imagine people with enemies don’t last long in Hakata City.)

15 June 2018 ~ 1 Comment

DP FICTION #40B: “Withholding Judgment Day” by Ryan Dull

5:00 AM GMT

Brother Franco Corsini always woke up early when the world was ending. Some Elegian monks could roll out of bed twenty minutes before Christ returned and perform their duties without a hitch, but Brother Franco needed a long morning to get into the right mindset. He lay in the pre-dawn light with his blanket pulled to his chin and prayed for humanity in expanding concentric circles – first himself, then his monastery, then the city of Milan, the nation of Italy, the people of the world, the dead, the unborn, and all Creation. Through the wall of his cell, Brother Franco could hear his neighbor already rejoicing at the top of his lungs. But his neighbor expected Christ to return before 6:00 AM, and so of course he was yelling. Brother Franco belonged to the 2:00 to 3:00 PM GMT slot, which he shared with Brothers Dimitri Abdulov and Hernan Esteban, both of whom were currently sound asleep in the Elegians’ second monastery in central Colombia. Brother Franco had nine long hours left. He knew, but did not yet expect, in an immediate, physical way, that the world would end. For a novice, this might have been cause for alarm. But Brother Franco had been expecting the end for years now, and he trusted that he would get there, even if it took all morning. 

13 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

BOOK REVIEW: Dead in the Family by Charlaine Harris

Dead in the Family is a romance/mystery/horror novel from 2010, the tenth in the Sookie Stackhouse series of novels by Charlaine Harris (which is the basis of the HBO show True Blood).  The previous books are all reviewed here earlier on the Diabolical Plots feed.

At the end of the last book, Dead and Gone, Sookie was tortured at the hands of two fairies that were part of the opposing faction of the short-lived but brutal fairy war.  As this book starts, she is still recovering from both the physical and psychological aftermath of this horrific treatment, with the help of her friends and her boyfriend the vampire Eric Northman.  Things begin to get very complicated when Eric’s maker, the ancient Roman vampire Appius Livius Ocella, shows up with another vampire he has made–Alexei Romanov, the last son of the last Czar of Russia who witnessed his entire family slaughtered and is still suffering from emotional imbalances even these decades later.  Sookie is asked to babysit the child of her (dead) cousin Hadley, who is also telepathic, and she helps him deal with social situations.  Meanwhile, Bill is still ill from the silver poisoning he got during the fairy war.  If his maker were still alive, she might be able to heal him, but the only chance is another vampire made by his maker–and Bill doesn’t want to contact her.

11 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

Anime Review: Kokkoku

kokkoku
I really wanted to like Kokkoku. I really did.

The setup in the very first episode has a lot of promise. Juri Yukawa is a young woman, newly graduated from college, and she’s from a middle class family that has fallen on hard times. Her mother is still working, but her father has been laid off. Her grandfather is retired, her older brother is unemployed, and her older sister is a single mother with a child she had with a man who has since exited her life.

All four generations of the Yukawas live in the same house and Juri feels like she needs to get out of town before she ends up going nowhere like almost every other adult in her family. She knows she’s not that special. None of her job interviews locally have resulted in any offers.

08 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

BOOK REVIEW: Dead and Gone by Charlaine Harris

Dead and Gone is a romance/mystery/horror novel from 2009, the ninth in the Sookie Stackhouse series of novels by Charlaine Harris (which is the basis of the HBO show True Blood).  The previous books are all reviewed here earlier on the Diabolical Plots feed.

Before the series of books, the vampires of the world had publicly revealed their existence, but since then Sookie has learned of many other supernatural beings living among us as humans.  Among them are the shapeshifters, including werewolves and wereanimals of other types.  Now that they’ve had time to observe how the vampire revelation has gone, the shapeshifters have finally decided to make their big public reveal, outing themselves to the public both in a general sense and with individual members of communities revealing themselves at once.  The reveal in Bon Temps seems to go pretty well, until Sookie’s werepanther sister-in-law is found crucified outside Merlotte’s where she works.

06 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

Spring 2018 Anime First Impressions

Spring 2018 Anime First Impressions

caligulaA lot has changed since last year. Amazon’s Anime Strike service has been shut down and everything previously streaming on it has been rolled into its baseline Amazon Prime service. While this does not help fans without Amazon Prime, American fans are no longer being charged a few extra dollars for the same content their Canadian counterparts have been getting as part of their baseline service.

Additionally, HIDIVE is coming into its own as an alternate streaming service with its own exclusive licenses. It doesn’t have a free streaming alternative, but the monthly subscription is affordable and their library is deep with several exclusives.

01 June 2018 ~ 0 Comments

Diabolical Plots: Year Three Available for Pre-Order!

The newest anthology from Diabolical Plots, Diabolical Plots Year Three, is now available for pre-order from Amazon and Kobo (other vendors to follow).  Pre-ordering is a great way to help ebook vendor algorithms promote it more, so if you think you would like a copy anyway pre-ordering is a big help.

01 June 2018 ~ 3 Comments

DP FICTION #40A: “Tank!” by John Wiswell

The tank hates revolving doors. They’re paralyzed watching the doors whoosh by, trying to imagine anyone getting into the convention center through these things. The curb crumbles beneath the tank’s treads, and commuters honk for them to get their back-end out of the road. Two tweens sneak around the tank’s chassis, carrying a rack of brightly colored cosplay wigs, and slip into one of the revolving glass chambers.

“Be brave,” the tank tells themself.

The tank nudges their barrel inside, getting barely halfway in before the door clanks against their barrel. Instinctively they try to back up, rending steel frames and shattering glass everywhere.

31 May 2018 ~ 0 Comments

New Submission Grinder Features: Piece Priority!

A couple of new features were released over the last week on the Submission Grinder.  For those who don’t know what the Submission Grinder is, it’s a donation-supported website that helps writers finds publishers for their work, as well as providing submission statistics from user data.  

The Advanced Search Engine can do a lot of things already.  You can search by various parameters like length or pay rate.  You can ignore individual markets so they never show up in your search results, or exclude markets where a particular piece has been submitted.  But it can only work with the data it has available to it, and sometimes that’s not the sort of data that a program can make sense of.  For instance, Beneath Ceaseless Skies takes secondary world fantasy only.  The search engine can base its search on genre, so it’ll find BCS in a Fantasy search, so if you search for your contemporary American fantasy you’re going to keep seeing BCS in your search results and you’ll have to remember to ignore that result yourself.  Or if you have a piece that doesn’t technically fit the specifications of a market but you have special permission to submit or something, then there would be no way to mark that for yourself.

28 May 2018 ~ 0 Comments

BOOK REVIEW: Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty

Six Wakes by Mur Lafferty is a science fiction mystery, one of the finalists for the Hugo Award for the Best Novel category of 2017.

In the future, cloning is commonplace, but its use is strictly limited by law to ensure that it’s only used for longevity of a person rather than multiplication.  Every clone makes regular mindmaps of their memories and after they die, a new youthful body is cloned from their DNA and the mindmap copied into it.  Many clones have hundreds of years worth of memories they carry with them as though they have lived a single long life.  The practice of cloning is not accepted by everyone, especially religious groups, many of which consider clones to be soulless abominations, and there have been violent conflicts about cloning practices.