- December 4th, 2013
The final selections for the Goodreads Choice Awards 2013 have been announced. Thanks to you a huge selection of Orbit titles made the final lists, and COLD DAYS by Jim Butcher won the number one spot for Paranormal Fantasy book of the year.
Thanks to everyone who voted!
Paranormal Fantasy – View all
Overall category winner: COLD DAYS by Jim Butcher (UK | AUS)
FROST BURNED by Patricia Briggs (UK | AUS)
HUNTED by Kevin Hearne (UK | AUS)
Fantasy – View all
A MEMORY OF LIGHT by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson (UK | AUS)
THE CROWN TOWER by Michael J Sullivan (US | UK | AUS)
PROMISE OF BLOOD by Brian McClellan (US | UK | AUS)
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- - September 6th, 2013
This week Variety announced that Iron Man and Children of Men scribes Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby will script the pilot of The Expanse, based on a series bestselling novels written by James S.A. Corey, for Alcon Television Group. Check out the full scoop here.
This of course begs the question: who would you like to see cast in any television adaptation of the series? Go wild. We can’t wait to hear who you would choose.
Like the freshly unveiled cover of CIBOLA BURN? Go to SF Signal to see a larger version and also the cover of Daniel Abraham’s upcoming THE WIDOW’S HOUSE, book four of the Dagger and the Coin series.
- - June 17th, 2013
We would love to introduce the readers of Orbit Books to Will Hinton, our new Editor! Will comes to us from afar — a few blocks down and to the west from Voyager where he has worked with such talents such as Richard Kadrey, Kim Harrison, Jeff VanderMeer and Brom. He doesn’t like desserts — so try not to bribe him with cookies — but he’s keen on martinis (shaken, of course). We hope you’ll wave to him when you see him around (at conventions and such!).
We’re very excited to have him join the team!
Will said, “Orbit has an outstanding author roster and team so it’s a thrill to have the chance to contribute to their mission to publish superb speculative fiction.”
- - May 31st, 2013
A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease. We owe our good health to a humble parasite – a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation.
This Fall Mira Grant debuts in hardcover with PARASITE (US | UK) – a new series from the bestselling author of the Newsflesh Trilogy. In anticipation of the big release, SymboGen is opening its doors to you.
Visit SymboGen.net for news and product information about the revolutionary Intestinal Bodyguard or follow the corporation on Twitter. On the website, you’ll also be able to pre-order your copy of PARASITE and sign-up for alerts about Mira Grant’s publishing activity.
For those of you attending BEA today, we’re giving away galleys of PARASITE and antibacterial hand sanitizer while supplies last. Look for the “friendly” SymboGen staff at booth #1828 for assistance.
“It is the greatest gift of my people, that we can bring our dreams to life for other eyes. Fantasy is a tool; like any other tool, it may be used poorly or well. At its best, fantasy reveals truths that cannot be shown any other way.”
– Sören Kristiaan Hansen, aka Deliann Mithondionne, the Changeling Prince (BLADE OF TYSHALLE, book two of the Acts of Caine)
A few years before I was born, an American journalist named Edward R. Murrow hosted a program on the CBS Radio Network called This I Believe. Each episode only lasted five minutes, of which three and a half were given over to an essay by a different contributor, each speaking about the specific personal convictions that they felt gave their lives meaning. In the generally terrifying atmosphere of the early Cold War, this program was the closest the 1950s ever got to a viral video. It was the most listened-to English-language program in history at that time, and it spawned books, and records, and other radio programs – some of which continue to this day.
When the good folk at Orbit decided to pick up my Acts of Caine novels, they asked me to contribute a blog-post-slash-promotional-essay or two for their website. I dislike writing about myself in any kind of biographical sense; if I thought that where I was born, my family, education, hobbies and pets and private life generally were any of your business, I’d write memoirs, not heroic fantasy.
I also have very little interest in commenting on my stories. My comments are the stories. Now – despite my dislike – I’ve done both of these things, and reasonably often, because that’s what people keep telling me I have to do to promote my books. The Good Folk, however, gave me license to write whatever I want.
I want to write about what I believe.
Most of what follows will be about story, because I make stories the same way I breathe: even to pause requires an act of will, and if I ever stop, it’s because I’m dead.
So… This I believe:
Not all honest writing is good, but all good writing is honest.
What’s not said is as important as what is. Often more important. Most of the trick to writing is knowing what to leave out.
It’s easier to make people cry if you’ve already made them laugh. And vice versa.
Whatever a story’s other virtues, if it’s not entertaining you, you’re wasting your time. A story is only great if it’s great for you. Personally.
What any work of art means depends on who you are when you look at it. What you get out of a book depends on what you bring to it. A book is only marks on a page (or pixels on a screen). The story is what happens in your imagination as you scan those marks. Books aren’t deep. Some readers are.
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- - April 24th, 2013
One of the coolest things in Orson Scott Card’s novel ENDER’S GAME – and likely one of the most difficult things to film – are the combat scenes that take place in the zero gravity battle room. So just how did they go about filming them for the Ender’s Game movie?
There’s a great exclusive interview here on i09 from Asa Butterfield (star of Hugo and The Boy In the Striped Pajamas), who plays Ender Wiggin himself.
It’s a very cool insight into the challenges of filming a scifi movie, e.g.:
“When you’re in the harnesses to stop yourself from falling at the waist, which is where they’re connected, you have to be tensed up. So keeping actions smooth whilst having your whole body completely tensed is surprisingly difficult. Meanwhile you’re saying your lines . . .”
You don’t get those issues filming a rom-com!
If you’re based in the UK and want to keep up with all the Ender’s Game film news, there is now both an Ender’s Game UK Facebook page and Ender’s Game UK Twitter account (@EndersGameFilm) that you can follow, along with the Ender’s Game Official Tumblr.
And if you’re keen to find out more back story to ENDER’S GAME, and the conflict that spawned the battle school, we’ll soon be publishing two explosive Orson Scott Card books telling of mankind’s first contact with the alien race – EARTH UNAWARE (UK | ANZ) and EARTH AFIRE (UK | ANZ), books 1 and 2 in The First Formic Wars.
- - April 11th, 2013
In anticipation of the upcoming film based on the classic science fiction novel ENDER’S GAME (UK | ANZ), we’re extremely excited to announce the UK acquisition of a brand new series set in the same world. See the covers released here for the first time . . .
The First Formic Wars series begins with EARTH UNAWARE and continues with EARTH AFIRE. It’s set 100 years before the events of ENDER’S GAME.
Before Ender Wiggin is born, before the battle school has been built, mankind is about to have its first encounter with an alien race. The Formics are coming to Earth, and things are not about to go well . . .
Not only does this series give some fantastic back story to the tale of ENDER’S GAME and what happened in the first conflict with the Formics, this also happens to be an exceptionally good, space-battle-filled adventure all of its own. The series has had some great reviews in already:
‘A standout tale of sf adventure that gives Ender series fans fascinating backstory to the classic Ender’s Game’ LIBRARY JOURNAL
‘The story progresses nimbly, with plenty of tension and excitement and Card’s usual well-developed characters’ KIRKUS REVIEWS
‘Literate prose and superlative characterisation . . . excellent’ BOOKLIST
Both of these books are out very soon at the start of June – so not long to wait. They’re a perfect way to fill the time before the film is released in October. . . (Hurry up already movie!)
The series is co-written by Orson Scott Card, the author of ENDER’S GAME, and Aaron Johnston – a New York Times bestselling author, Marvel comic writer, and associate producer on the upcoming ENDER’S GAME movie. Look below for the blurb for EARTH UNAWARE and check out both books on 4th June 2013. Read the rest of this entry »
- - April 4th, 2013
The finalists for the Arthur C. Clarke Award 2013 have been announced, and we’re delighted to see 2312 (UK | US | ANZ) by Kim Stanley Robinson and INTRUSION (UK | ANZ) by Ken MacLeod both on the shortlist. Here’s the full list of nominees:
Nod by Adrian Barnes (Bluemoose)
Dark Eden by Chris Beckett (Corvus)
Angelmaker by Nick Harkaway (William Heinemann)
The Dog Stars by Peter Heller (Headline)
Intrusion by Ken MacLeod (Orbit)
2312 by Kim Stanley Robinson (Orbit)
All of us at Orbit offer our congratulations to Stan and Ken, and to the other authors on the shortlist. The winner will be announced at a ceremony at the Royal Society in London on 1 May 2013.
Praise for 2312:
Robinson blends mystery and suspense with lyrical evocation of a complex future” – SUNDAY TELEGRAPH
“Polymathic, visionary brilliance” – FINANCIAL TIMES
“A challenging, compelling masterpiece of science fiction” – PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY (STARRED REVIEW)
Praise for INTRUSION:
A disturbingly real socialist dystopia” – GUARDIAN
“Intrusion is a finely-tuned, in-your-face argument of a novel” – SFX
“A twistedly clever, frighteningly plausible dystopian glimpse” – Iain M. Banks
- - April 3rd, 2013
I am officially Very Poorly.
After a couple of surgical procedures, I am gradually recovering from jaundice caused by a blocked bile duct, but that – it turns out – is the least of my problems.
I first thought something might be wrong when I developed a sore back in late January, but put this down to the fact I’d started writing at the beginning of the month and so was crouched over a keyboard all day. When it hadn’t gone away by mid-February, I went to my GP, who spotted that I had jaundice. Blood tests, an ultrasound scan and then a CT scan revealed the full extent of the grisly truth by the start of March.
I have cancer. It started in my gall bladder, has infected both lobes of my liver and probably also my pancreas and some lymph nodes, plus one tumour is massed around a group of major blood vessels in the same volume, effectively ruling out any chance of surgery to remove the tumours either in the short or long term.
The bottom line, now, I’m afraid, is that as a late stage gall bladder cancer patient, I’m expected to live for ‘several months’ and it’s extremely unlikely I’ll live beyond a year. So it looks like my latest novel, The Quarry, will be my last.
As a result, I’ve withdrawn from all planned public engagements and I’ve asked my partner Adele if she will do me the honour of becoming my widow (sorry – but we find ghoulish humour helps). By the time this goes out we’ll be married and on a short honeymoon. We intend to spend however much quality time I have left seeing friends and relations and visiting places that have meant a lot to us. Meanwhile my heroic publishers are doing all they can to bring the publication date of my new novel forward by as much as four months, to give me a better chance of being around when it hits the shelves.
There is a possibility that it might be worth undergoing a course of chemotherapy to extend the amount of time available. However that is still something we’re balancing the pros and cons of, and anyway it is out of the question until my jaundice has further and significantly, reduced.
Lastly, I’d like to add that from my GP onwards, the professionalism of the medics involved – and the speed with which the resources of the NHS in Scotland have been deployed – has been exemplary, and the standard of care deeply impressive. We’re all just sorry the outcome hasn’t been more cheerful.
A website is being set up where friends, family and fans can leave messages for me and check on my progress. It should be up and running during this week and a link to it will be on my official website at friends.banksophilia.com.
- - March 1st, 2013
The Los Angeles Review of Books‘s profile of Robert Jackson Bennett explores Bennett’s entire genre-bending speculative oeuvre, from the Edgar Award-winning THE COMPANY MAN (US | UK | AUS) to last month’s AMERICAN ELSEWHERE (US | UK | AUS).
“There’s always an awkward moment in reviews of Bennett’s work when the reviewer tries to sum up his genre affiliations in a couple of words. Niall Ferguson called The Company Man “a love letter to airships and acid noir — by way of steampunk, sci-fi and murder mystery.” FantasyLiterature.com calls his latest book “classical mythology, Lovecraftian gothic, quantum science and what’s-in-the-woods horror.” Bennett himself once described his debut novel Mr. Shivers as “magical realist/fantastical/horror/whatever-the-reviewer-wants-to-call-it-that-day.”
Read the whole article.
The Los Angeles Times also reviewed AMERICAN ELSEWHERE, which they said “manages to surprise, terrify and move the reader.” You can read the full review here.