- - September 14th, 2015
We’re excited to be able to share the cover for Babylon’s Ashes (coming out in June 2016), the sixth novel in James S.A. Corey’s New York Times bestselling Expanse series – now a new original series from the Syfy Channel, premiering December 14th 2015.
Artist Daniel Dociu, Designer Kirk Benshoff.
A revolution brewing for generations has begun in fire. It will end in blood.
The Free Navy – a violent group of Belters in black-market military ships – has crippled the Earth and begun a campaign of piracy and violence among the outer planets. The colony ships heading for the thousand new worlds on the far side of the alien ring gates are easy prey, and no single navy remains strong enough to protect them.
James Holden and his crew know the strengths and weaknesses of this new force better than anyone. Outnumbered and outgunned, the embattled remnants of the old political powers call on the Rocinante for a desperate mission to reach Medina Station at the heart of the gate network.
But the new alliances are as flawed as the old, and the struggle for power has only just begun. As the chaos grows, an alien mystery deepens. Pirate fleets, mutiny, and betrayal may be the least of the Rocinante’s problems. And in the uncanny spaces past the ring gates, the choices of a few damaged and desperate people may determine the fate of more than just humanity.
If you haven’t started the series then don’t delay!
For more work by Daniel Dociu, visit his website.
- - September 11th, 2015
We are excited to release the cover for THE OBELISK GATE, which was launched at The Mary Sue earlier this week. This is the second novel in the Broken Earth series by N. K. Jemisin, and we know that you’ll love it as much as you did the first novel, THE FIFTH SEASON (US | UK | AUS). The Obelisk Gate continues the story of Essun and Alabaster as each continue their search. A post-apocalyptic fantasy at its core, this is a novel of the end of the world, of secrets revealed and of betrayals that still scar the land.
THIS IS THE WAY THE WORLD ENDS… FOR THE LAST TIME.
The season of endings grows darker as civilization fades into the long cold night. Alabaster Tenring — madman, world-crusher, savior — has returned with a mission: to train his successor, and thus seal the fate of the Stillness forever.
It continues with a lost daughter, found by the enemy.
It continues with the obelisks, and an ancient mystery converging on answers at last.
The Stillness is the wall which stands against the flow of tradition, the spark of hope long buried under the thickening ashfall. And it will not be broken.
Check out what reviewers have been saying about The Fifth Season:
“Intricate and extraordinary.”
— New York Times
“[Jemisin has packed] sumptuous detail and dimensionality… into her premise. … Jemisin maintains a gripping voice and an emotional core that not only carries the story through its complicated setting, but sets things up for even more staggering revelations to come.”
— NPR Books
“Elegiac, complex, and intriguing…. Jemisin’s graceful prose and gritty setting provide the perfect backdrop for this fascinating tale of determined characters fighting to save a doomed world.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Multi-award winner Jemisin breaks uncharted ground with this long-awaited title…. A must-buy for all speculative fiction collections.”
— Library Journal (starred review)
“Jemisin might just be the best world builder out there right now…. [She] is a master at what she does.”
— RT Book Reviews (Top Pick!)
“[The Fifth Season is] an ambitious book, with a shifting point of view, and a protagonist whose full complexity doesn’t become apparent till toward the end of the novel.”
- - September 9th, 2015
I love me a great sci fi novel, and these are great sci fi novels! I got assigned the Lazarus War series by Jamie Sawyer (US | UK | AUS) which is set in a future where mankind battles a hostile alien race. All that protects us are an elite military team, remotely operating avatars in the most dangerous theatres of war.
Lauren had reached out to the ever talented Ioan Dumitrescu to work on the series. Jon took the proverbial bull by the horns and came back with illustrations that blow you away like an old school Maxell Ad. It only seemed appropriate to have the art keep pace with the story, so we wanted movement and action that jumps off the page!
Here’s Jon (Ioan) to talk about the project!
Hi everybody, my name is Ioan Dumitrescu and im a professional concept designer / ilustrator for games and movies.
And sometimes im in that zen zone where i get to do sci fi book covers. This time that opportunity came with Lazarus War by Jamie Sawyer.
Story about incredible space battles between starships and behemoth alien flotillas, plasma shooting crazy dudes, in short an adrenaline rush ride.
My first assignment came from Lauren P, and i was briefed to work around a lead ship. The thing i love about doing book covers is they give me a great freedom to experiment and see where it can take me. The starship was supposed to be a bulky, can take a hit, huge gun/ cannon.
Stage 2 Sketch
The vibe i followed was to make a very dynamic image, and show a race for life. I took advantage of 3d to get the best angle and shapes. After that the image started coming along, having a huge star like explosion, which i thought would show how anything can happen at any given moment. We also see a glimpse of the aliens, the Krell ( thats a cool alien name) with their smaller needle attack ships, that swarm and overwhelm. The colors of orange yellows described the imeddiate danger the starship is in, but you can also see hints of blue and green at the front which gives hope to escaping alive.Next came the email from Kirk B, saying to start focusing on the second book, which would come down to showing what the Krell are all about, behemoth motherships, 10 times the size of the starships, that deliver thousands of expendable attack ships. Process was similar, using 3d to decide on the best angle. I wasnt ready to give up on the dynamic action packed feeling, and i also wanted to be different from the „all out” first cover.I decided to show the moment before the Krells choose and attack their targets. Having left the last battle in the background, now stands the mothership, in all its biomechanic glory, in a somehow proud stance, a relic of times unknown, that conquers everything it sets it sight on, no fear, no emotion. I choose to make it a bit more slimy and also a small tribute to the genius of H.R Giger. It just felt right! All the attack ships are waiting to jump at their target when given the order! Tension in the air treated with an unearthy like calm. The colors followed that feeling, having the ship wrapped in serene white light and surrounded by blacking greens. The touch of red is also a sign of the carnage that might follow.
Initial Ship Designs
This can now only get me thinking of what might be the 3d book cover, im thinking of something more intimate, that would bring the viewer and reader closer to the characters that take the action further.
I hope you enjoy the past and future covers to come!
Final Art for Book 1
Final Art for Book 2
So, without adieu, I’m thrilled to present the covers to the first two books in the Lazarus War series by Jamie Sawyer!
The Lazarus War: Artefact and The Lazarus War: Legion is out now!
- - August 17th, 2015
We’re very proud to present the UK cover for FIRE TOUCHED, the new Mercy Thompson novel by Patricia Briggs.
Waiting for the next Mercy book can be tough for urban fantasy fans, since we’re all on the edge of our seat to find out what happens next in this gripping series . . . But we’re glad to say that that it’s coming in March 2016 and is available for pre-order now.
There’s a real treat in store with this new book . . . see what’s to come below!
Mercy Thompson is back, and she’ll soon discover that when the fae stalk the human world, it’s the children who suffer . . .
Tensions between the fae and humans are coming to a head. And when coyote shapeshifter Mercy and her Alpha werewolf mate, Adam, are called upon to stop a rampaging troll, they find themselves with something that could be used to make the fae back down and forestall out-and-out war: a human child stolen long ago by the fae.
Defying the most powerful werewolf in the country, the humans and the fae, Mercy, Adam and their pack choose to protect the boy no matter what the cost. But who will protect them from a boy who is fire touched?
- - August 13th, 2015
Today we’re excited to unveil the cover for THE LAZARUS WAR: LEGION (UK | US | ANZ).
If you like gripping action and adventure in deep space, along with tales of elite fighters and frightening alien tech (we certainly do!), then this series is for you. We love it with a passion . . .
This great artwork comes from the artist Ioan Dumitrescu. This is the second book in the series following THE LAZARUS WAR: ARTEFACT (UK | US | ANZ), which is already available digitally. It features Conrad Harris, otherwise known as Lazarus. He’s a man who has died a hundred deaths. There are some battles in deep space which no human could survive . . . So Lazarus and his team run suicide missions against a hostile alien race in remotely operated simulant bodies.
This series is from Jamie Sawyer, a great new talent on the SF scene. You can find him on Twitter as @JSawyerAuthor. Check out what some other great science fiction authors have been saying about his series:
‘A gripping read that moves at warp speed’ Jack Campbell, author of the Lost Fleet novels
‘Starships sporting particle beam weapons, railguns the size of skyscrapers, laser batteries, missiles… And then there are the uber-human super-soldiers clad in powered armour and wielding plasma weapons… Is that enough for you?…This, dear readers, is the good stuff. Recommended’ Neal Asher, author of the Agent Cormac novels
‘A highly promising science fiction debut – a fun, gripping adventure story, with a mystery at its core that kept me turning the pages’ Gary Gibson, author of STEALING LIGHT
‘An adrenaline shot of rip-roaring military SF packed with cinematic action sequences and tightly drawn characters’ Stephen Deas, author of ELITE: WANTED, EMPIRES: EXTRACTION
THE LAZARUS WAR: ARTEFACT (UK | US | ANZ), is already available as an ebook, and THE LAZARUS WAR: LEGION (UK | US | ANZ) is available for pre-order now. It releases as a digital-first edition in under a month, on the 1st September 2015.
The complete series will be released in print next year, but now’s a great time to get ahead of the game and snap it up in ebook for a reduced price. You’ll see just why Jamie is such an exciting new talent with big things to come!
Check out the blurb for THE LAZARUS WAR: LEGION below… Read the rest of this entry »
- - July 29th, 2015
We’re delighted to launch the cover for Miles Cameron’s THE DREAD WYRM, the much-anticipated new installment in the Traitor Son Cycle that began with THE RED KNIGHT and THE FELL SWORD, coming out in October this year.
Some are born to power. Some seize it. And some have the wisdom never to wield it.
The Red Knight has stood against soldiers, armies and the might of an empire without flinching. He’s fought on real and magical battlefields alike, and now he’s facing one of the greatest challenges yet. A tournament.
A joyous spring event, the flower of the nobility will ride against each other for royal favor and acclaim. It’s a political contest — one which the Red Knight has the skill to win. But the stakes may be higher than he thinks. The court of Alba has been infiltrated by a dangerous faction of warlike knights, led by the greatest knight in the world: Jean de Vrailly — and the prize he’s fighting for isn’t royal favor, but the throne of Alba itself…
Not caught up? There’s still time to check out the first two books.
Praise for the Traitor Son Cycle:
“I cannot recommend the Traitor Son Cycle enough…amazing.” — SF Signal
“Literate, intelligent and well-thought-out…George R. R. Martin comparisons will no doubt be in abundance.” — SFF World
“Medieval fantasy at its finest.”— Fantasy Faction
“The series promises to be a standout epic fantasy for the ages.” — SF Signal Fantasy Book Critic
- - July 24th, 2015
From the creators of the wildly popular WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE podcast comes an imaginative mystery of appearances and disappearances that is a poignant look at the ways in which we all struggle to find ourselves – no matter where we live. WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE: A NOVEL will be released on 20th October in hardback, audio and ebook, but you can preorder your copy now.
We’re delighted to launch the UK and Australian cover today, wonderfully illustrated by Rob Wilson, designer of the original Night Vale logo. We asked Rob to tell us a little about the project:
“I’ve been involved with WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE since its inception, when Jeffrey Cranor asked me to design the original icon for the podcast. The writers and I worked together to create a simple, mysterious image that would convey the atmosphere of the show, without giving away any of its secrets. Years later, I’m amazed how the graphic has taken on a life of its own, with the hundreds—if not thousands—of creative interpretations of fan art it inspired. And now I’m thrilled to have been asked to design the cover of the new WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE novel and expand upon the art of the original graphic—just as the book broadens the world of the podcast. Like the original icon, the new book cover has secrets of its own.”
Find out more about Rob Wilson and his designs at RobWilsonWork.com.
Find out more about the novel and preorder today: commonplacebooks.com/novel.
- - July 13th, 2015
We are delighted to share our cover for DAUGHTER OF BLOOD, the third instalment in Helen Lowe’s David Gemmell Award-winning series, the Wall of Night.
This much-anticipated and thrilling epic fantasy will be released on 26th January 2016, but you can preorder it today!
A failing wall, a broken shield, and an enemy that will exploit every weakness . . .
Malian and Kalan have recovered two of the three legendary weapons of the Derai, but already it may be too late. The Wall of Night, fractured by centuries of blood feud and civil strife, is on the verge of falling.
Meanwhile, among Grayharbor backstreets, an orphan boy falls foul of dark forces. A daughter of the House of Blood must be married to the Earl of Night, a pawn in the web of her family’s ambition, and Kalan is caught in a political web he may not be able to escape.
While even as Malian dodges Darkswarm pursuers in her search for the Shield of Heaven, rumour whispers that it may be broken beyond repair – and she herself may be the blade the ancient enemy will drive into the heart of the Derai Alliance.
- - June 30th, 2015
THE FIRST LAW TRILOGY is being released this September from Orbit! This is the original grim dark trilogy that inspired a new generation of fantasy writers. We envy the readers who have yet to meet the infamous barbarian Logen Ninefingers, the dashing Captain Jezal dan Luthar, the wizard Bayaz and the sinister Inquisitor Glokta for the first time…
Murderous conspiracies rise to the surface, old scores are ready to be settled, and the line between hero and villain is sharp enough to draw blood.
Ancient secrets will be uncovered. Bloody battles will be won and lost. Bitter enemies will be forgiven — but not before they are hanged.
The king lies on his deathbed, the peasants revolt, and the nobles scramble to steal his crown. Only the First of the Magi can save the world, but there are risks. There is no risk more terrible, than to break the First Law…
“Bloody and relentless.” – George R. R. Martin
“Delightfully twisted and evil.” – The Guardian
“Heroic fantasy without conventional heroes…Full of cynicism and wit.” – RT Book Reviews
“Bold and authentically original.” – Jeff VanderMeer
“Compelling characters, a complex plot, and style to burn.” – Strange Horizons
“There is a gritty edge to his world and an awareness of the human cost of violence that is very contemporary.” – The Times
“Truly wonderful.” – Forbes
Cover design by Laura Brett
- - June 26th, 2015
Are you as excited about the launch of Jim Butcher’s new series as we are? THE AERONAUT’S WINDLASS (UK|ANZ) comes out 29th September, but you can preorder it today!
Filled with swashbuckling adventure, daring airship chases and thrilling swordfights, plus all the magic, wisecracking and dazzling heroics that make the Dresden Files so spectacular, this is not a series to miss. We’re very excited today to release our cover, by the fantastic Chris McGrath.
Jim Butcher, the no.1 Sunday Times and New York Times bestselling author of The Dresden Files and the Codex Alera novels, conjures up a new series set in a fantastic world of noble families, steam-powered technology, and magic-wielding warriors . . .
Since time immemorial, the Spires have sheltered humanity, towering for miles over the mist-shrouded surface of the world. Within their halls, aristocratic houses have ruled for generations, developing scientific marvels, fostering trade alliances, and building fleets of airships to keep the peace.
Captain Grimm commands the merchant ship, Predator. Fiercely loyal to Spire Albion, he has taken their side in the cold war with Spire Aurora, disrupting the enemy’s shipping lines by attacking their cargo vessels. But when the Predator is severely damaged in combat, leaving captain and crew grounded, Grimm is offered a proposition from the leaders of Albion – to join a team of agents on a vital mission in exchange for fully restoring Predator to its fighting glory.
And even as Grimm undertakes this dangerous task, he will learn that the conflict between the Spires is merely a premonition of things to come. Humanity’s ancient enemy, silent for more than ten thousand years, has begun to stir once more. And death will follow in its wake . . .