The extraordinary novel The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August (UK | US | ANZ) launches today, published by Orbit in the UK and Redhook in the US.
No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before. Nothing ever changes . . . Until now.
Here the author Claire North tells us what advice she would give to her past self, in case she got the chance to live her life all over again . . .
Your teachers and elders are not always right. Age does not necessarily bring wisdom, and if you feel uncertain about yourself, someone else’s certainty does not make them right. If anything, the more certain the other person is, the more you should question it. Have faith in your own mind, judgment and intelligence, and use it to question everything, even people who seem to be ‘above’ you in whatever place or time you happen to be in now.
Your friends are the best of you. When you are down, remember that if a person can be judged by the company you keep, then you are frankly, amazing. Because your friends are amazing and then some. By which extension – when you meet them for the first time, trust the geeks. They have found a thing they love and they have the guts to stand up for it, and through it, themselves. When you’re trying to work out who you are, they can help.
Physicality is in your power. The questions you ask about how you look, and more importantly how other people perceive your looks, is based on a false premise. Charisma and confidence is a thing created in the mind, in how you see yourself and how you feel about yourself. The rest is fluff.
Regret is not the same as wisdom.
When the monkey in the hoodie says ‘yes’ to ‘fixed’ and ‘off’ he is, in fact, wrong.
Concision is a rarer grace than wit.
Above all: do not be afraid. Running away from something stupid or dangerous isn’t fear, it’s just good sense. The rest however, the fear that will hold you back, is self-inflicted and can be beaten. Do not be afraid.
- - February 20th, 2014
Today we digitally release UNFETTERED: TALES BY MASTERS OF FANTASY.
It’s a stunning and diverse collection of fantasy fiction from some of the biggest names in the fantasy genre – including Terry Brooks, Patrick Rothfuss, Peter V. Brett, Mark Lawrence, Naomi Novik, Kevin Hearne, Michael J. Sullivan, R. A Salvatore, Tad Williams, Lev Grossman and many others.
It also includes deleted scenes from Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson’s A MEMORY OF LIGHT, the final Wheel of Time novel.
The collection was gathered by Shawn Speakman, author and web guru for Terry Brooks. When Shawn fell ill back in 2011 and was unable to cover his medical bills, the fantasy community showed its exceptional generosity by stepping forward to help out. All of the authors involved were kind enough to donate their stories the collection to help him cover the costs – and what was produced is a truly wonderful anthology.
This is the first time UNFETTERED has been published in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, and our Orbit edition contains an extra bonus story from Shawn himself. Please see below for a list of all the stories included.
It’s available now at a special introductory price, and so it’s a great time to sample the fiction of some of the some of the best-selling and most critically acclaimed authors writing in fantasy today.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - January 14th, 2014
It’s the day we’ve all been waiting for . . . Melanie is here. The superb THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS (UK|US|ANZ) is released today in the UK, Australia and New Zealand.
Do you know Melanie’s secret yet? Get your copy to find out . . .
NOT EVERY GIFT IS A BLESSING
Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class.
When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don’t like her. She jokes that she won’t bite. But they don’t laugh.
Melanie is a very special girl.
Emotionally charged and gripping from beginning to end, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS is the most powerful and affecting thriller you will read this year.
To read the first few chapters for free, visit the Girl with all the Gifts Facebook page.
Hardcore horror fans are sometimes dismissive of “creature features” – horror narratives that build their scare tactics around a monster. Obviously there’s a very respected classical canon of monsters (vampires, werewolves, zombies, demons . . . ) that sit close to the heart of the horror genre and partially define it. But then there’s a host of other beasties that are exiled to the outer darkness – or the Black Lagoon, 40,000 fathoms, outer space, the Korean sewer system, wherever it was they came from in the first place.
I can see the distinction, to be honest. You look at a vampire (sparkly or not) and you think horror. You look at the spiky cactus beast from The Quatermass Experiment, or the lolloping mutant in The Host, or Godzilla stomping on a toy Tokyo, and you think sci-fi. Or depending on your tastes, maybe you think “that tea isn’t going to make itself . . . ”
There’s a deeper distinction to be drawn, though. It concerns our relationship with the monster and the reaction that it draws from us. Creature features are predominantly about spectacle, and they probably share more DNA with thrillers than with horror stories. They can be scary, but it’s a fairly uncomplicated fear. The fear of being eaten, say, or having your head ripped off. Monsters in horror have the potential to scare us or challenge us in different ways. Read the rest of this entry »
- - December 18th, 2013
Coming in March is something new and very exciting from one of the all-time greats of epic fantasy writing.
THE HIGH DRUID’S BLADE is a brand new title from Terry Brooks. It’s the first Defenders of Shannara novel – one of three new stand-alone novels set in his thrilling world of Shannara.
Here for the first time is our UK version of the cover in all its glory, using the stunning artwork from illustrator Bastien Lecouffe Deharme. We feel this new look is just right for Terry’s books – it’s fresh and dynamic and really reflects how Terry’s writing is as breath-taking as ever.
THE HIGH DRUID’S BLADE features a brand new hero Paxon Leah – a young man who believes himself to be ordinary, but fate will prove him to be very different indeed . . . It’s one of the most exciting fantasy stories I’ve read in a long time! Secrets are revealed, powers are unleashed, and you’ll see a whole new side to Shannara you never knew existed. Read on for the blurb:
Legend has it that Paxon Leah is descended from the royals and warriors who once waged war with magical weapons. But those heroes are long gone now, and there is nothing enchanted about the antique sword that hangs above Paxon’s fireplace. Paxon leads a quiet life – until extraordinary circumstances overturn his simple world . . . and rewrite his destiny.
When his sister is abducted by a mysterious stranger, Paxon races to her rescue with the only weapon he can find. He is stunned to discover powerful magic unleashed within him – and within his ancestors’ ancient blade.
But his formidable new ability is dangerous in untrained hands. Paxon must master it quickly, as his near-fatal clash with a dark sorcerer won’t be his last. Leaving behind home and hearth, he journeys to the keep of the Druid order to learn the secrets of magic and earn the right to become their sworn protector . . .
Also, don’t forget that the paperback edition of the last book in Terry’s Dark Legacy of Shannara series, WITCH WRAITH, is released on the last day of this year. It’s a perfect end to the series, and a great way to round off 2013!
- - December 10th, 2013
We have been amazed to see the overwhelming outpouring of love The Girl With All the Gifts. It’s not even out yet but it proves this will be the book that everyone will be talking about in 2014.
We wanted to show you a range of the incredible feedback we’ve been getting – from fellow authors, such as John Ajvide Lindqvist, the author of LET THE RIGHT ONE IN, from booksellers in the UK and from across the world, from people within publishing, and from just about every type of person you can think of. It’s amazing to see how many people this book is wowing well ahead of its publication.
Here is just a small selection of what people have been saying:
’A great read that takes hold of you and doesn´t let go’
John Ajvide Lindqvist, author of LET THE RIGHT ONE IN
’Brilliant . . . Gripping right to the end’
SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author Carole Matthews
’Both tender and devastating, a page-turner which kept me guessing up to the very last scene, as well as a meditation on what it means to be human . . . Fantastically enjoyable’
Naomi Alderman, multi-award winning novelist
‘Kazuo Ishiguro meets The Walking Dead – I loved this’
SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author Jenny Colgan
‘Thrilling, heart-breaking and clever, this is an end of the world story with a difference . . . I loved this and would recommend it to everyone’ Read the rest of this entry »
- - November 26th, 2013
Released today is LAST TO RISE, the third and final novel in the Rojan Dizon series by Francis Knight, following FADE TO BLACK and BEFORE THE FALL. The ending to this action fantasy series is intensely powerful and moving.
Things are at breaking point for the towering vertical city of Mahala. It has long been a city plagued by corruption, by the exploitation of the weakest – where the pain of the downtrodden has endlessly paid for the whims and fancies of the privileged elite.
But now things are reaching boiling point – as the city is under siege and Rojan’s desperate efforts to save the city using his forbidden magic are driving him further and further into the depths of madness. Although he’d gladly see this city burn, he will give his all to save those who mean something to him – as they’re all he’s got left.
This quote from Publisher’s Weekly really sums up how magnificent it is:
Knight’s Rojan Dizon trilogy conclusion presses its growing cast of characters into intense moments of loyalty and sacrifice to close with a sharp turn into darker, more rewarding territory . . . With Rojan’s best friend anchoring him to humanity on one side and his exhausting, bloody, agonizing magic driving him closer to insanity on the other, the novel takes on a propulsive, fractured energy that mirrors Rojan and Mahala’s increasingly frantic struggle for survival.
The series, which has grown in complexity since the beginning, reaches a profoundly moving conclusion that is both unexpected and entirely satisfying.
If you haven’t picked up the Rojan Dizon novels yet (starting with FADE TO BLACK) I urge you to give them a go, as it’s one of the most dynamic and readable series around from a very promising new British fantasy talent.
- - October 19th, 2013
Some of the characters in Amanda Carlson’s new novel COLD BLOODED ( US | UK | ANZ) may be as cold as they come, but the reviews this new book is getting are hot hot hot!
If you’re into urban fantasy and paranormal romance of any kind but haven’t yet checked out the Jessica McClain novels (which begin with FULL BLOODED (US | UK | ANZ), look below to see what you’re missing! Fans of the likes of Patricia Briggs, Rachel Caine, Ilona Andrews and Chloe Neill will love this . . .
‘Cold Blooded starts with a bang and the action keeps coming right up until the final pages. Jess now faces her most perilous journey yet, where the stakes have never been higher. I can’t wait to see what’s in store for her next’ VAMPIRE BOOK CLUB
‘I’ve fallen in love with Jessica, and her loyalty to those around her and willingness to do what it takes to keep them safe. I’m thrilled to be following her as she figures out this whole werewolf thing . . . And yes, it is as hot as you were likely expecting it would be.’ ALL THINGS URBAN FANTASY
‘If you haven’t tried this series, I highly recommend it. It is great for people who like strong female leads, werewolves and a lot of action. If you’ve enjoyed Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews, The Hollows by Kim Harrison, Downside Ghosts by Stacia Kane and Mercy Thompson by Patricia Briggs, then I think you’ll love this book’ HOT LISTENS
‘Cold Blooded was a fun, action-packed book with the right amount of romance, adventure, and twists to keep me firmly planted as part of the Pack’ SHE WOLF READS
‘Cold Blooded is the third book in Amanda Carlson’s Jessica McClain series and this one people is my favorite to date . . . Really cool . . . Red Blooded is up next sometime in 2014 and I can’t wait to read it’ YUMMY MEN AND KICK ASS CHICKS
‘It’s intense action start to finish and I’m ready for more’ HAPPILY EVER AFTER READS
- - September 11th, 2013
The time is almost upon us.
The film version of ENDER’S GAME – one of the most popular and critically acclaimed science fiction novels ever written – will be out in the UK on 25th October .
To celebrate, we’re very pleased to present the final cover for our Orbit film tie-in edition – available from 3rd October.
Starring Harrison Ford as Colonel Hyrum Graff, Ben Kingsley as Mazer Rackham and Asa Butterfield as the child prodigy Ender himself, we have very high hopes for this movie. The trailer looks spectacular – check out the latest extended version if you haven’t seen it yet.
You can also keep up to date with news on the film on the Ender’s Game Facebook page.
And if you haven’t read the worldwide bestselling, award-winning book behind this film yet, read a free extract to find out what you’re missing.
- - September 6th, 2013
We’re delighted to reveal the cover for a truly exceptional book that we’ll be releasing worldwide next year – one unlike anything you have ever read before, and set to be one of our biggest launches in 2014. And it starts with an ending.
Harry August is on his deathbed. Again.
No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before. Nothing ever changes.
As Harry nears the end of his eleventh life, a little girl appears at his bedside. ‘I nearly missed you, Doctor August,’ she says. ‘I need to send a message. It has come down from child to adult, child to adult, passed back through generations from a thousand years forward in time. The message is that the world is ending, and we cannot prevent it. So now it’s up to you.’
This is the extraordinary journey of one unforgettable character – a story of friendship and betrayal, loyalty and redemption, love and loneliness and the inevitable march of time.
Claire North is a pseudonym for an acclaimed British author who has previously published several novels. The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August is released worldwide on 8th April next year.