SCIENCE FICTION UPDATE: The other night I finished Fred Saberhagen’s new novel, Ardneh’s Sword. As the title suggests, it’s a sequel of sorts to his Empire of the East, though Ardneh’s Sword isn’t nearly as ambitious a work. (Empire of the East, if you’re unfamiliar with it, is absolutely terrific. I liked the new book, but it’s not on the same scale.) The new book seems to establish a transition between Empire and his later Swords books, continuing the theme of a fantasy/magic world that’s actually enabled by technology.