If you think dating is hard now, I hate to tell you this, but it’s only going to get worse. Based on the Hugo-winning story, Bridesicle, LOVE MINUS EIGHTY (US | UK | AUS) is a cold and yet stirring look at the search for true love in the future. What is already a difficult task for us now becomes even more complicated in this twisted and poignant story penned by Will McIntosh.
Praise for LOVE MINUS EIGHTY:
“This is speculative fiction at its most personal and powerful, extrapolating current social and technological trends and exploring how they would affect future people simply trying to live their lives and make their existence matter to someone.” – Kirkus (Starred Review)
In exactly one month from today, Peter Higgins’s brilliant debut WOLFHOUND CENTURY will be published here in the US. ”Sentient water, censored artists, mechanical constructs, old-fashioned detective work, and the secret police are all woven together in this rich and fascinating tapestry,” wrote Publishers Weekly, and that’s only the beginning of the wonderful praise we’ve received for this novel.
Watch the trailer on our website and pre-order your copy of WOLFHOUND CENTURY today! You can also read the first five chapters on io9 right away.
How thick is dragonhide? Maybe as tough as a 650 page epic fantasy novel? Yeah that sounds about right, but…then what? Shockingly, none of us at Orbit have faced down any dragons recently. Vampires? Please, too easy. A splash of holy water, a stake through the heart, the hardest part is cleaning up the mess. Zombie Apocalypse? We’ve got all our contingency plans covered.
So what do you use if the goal is to put a dent in a target of epic proportions?
Miles Cameron is an author and historical reenactor. We asked him if he could shoot an arrow through his debut fantasy novel, THE RED KNIGHT. Here’s what happened when he answered the challenge.
So the next time you’re out hunting dragons, be ready with the right equipment. To find out more about Miles Camerons’s combat experience and THE RED KNIGHT, check out this interview.
Last weekend, along with millions of other people I’m sure, I went to see the latest Sam Mendes Bond movie, SKYFALL. I found the film highly entertaining – with some very impressive action scenes, a slickest of slick opening sequence, a surprisingly believable plot (for an action movie I mean…), and a rather irresistible performance from the easy-on-the-eye Daniel Craig.
But I also found it interesting (with my Orbit hat on) that this time, 007 wasn’t having to save the world by disarming a nuclear warhead (think MOONRAKER or THUNDERBALL) or stopping the spread of a deadly virus (think ON HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE) or prevent an evil communist plot (think CASINO ROYALE and a whole host of other Bonds).
This time, Bond’s role was to combat the destruction looming from the leak of confidential information – by the world’s most sophisticated cyber-terrorist. Highly believable in this age of Wikileaks and hackers being potentially extradited for infiltrating US military systems.
It seems that the disasters befalling the various James Bonds have been evolving through the years – seemingly to keep up with the ways in which our world, our technology and our political and social struggles have been constantly changing. Because it appears that as we progress as a species, the potential pitfalls waiting to bring down Western world and civilisation itself seem to be constantly evolving too – and growing dangerously more numerous by the day. Read the rest of this entry »
Is it just me, or is science fiction starting to get more of the attention it deserves? It’s great to see that even MTV are getting in on the action – by filming David Brin at WorldCon 2012.
The topic was: why haven’t more species on Earth naturally self-uplifted to full sentience? With dolphins and apes sharing a similar intelligence level, and with parrots, crows, sea lions . . . and even prairie dogs being not too far behind, is there some kind of sentience “glass ceiling” that prevents bright creatures breaking through? And, if so, how did humanity manage to break through it and progress so far?
Is this an example of a whale trying to reach out to us and meet us halfway? Could this open up possibilities for communication between different species?
And then that raises an even bigger question. Should it now be our duty and obligation to offer other “pre-sapient” species a helping hand? We do, after all, now seem to have the tools of science to be able to do so – as shown by this article on making monkeys smarter using brain implants. Or would that just be the ultimate form of arrogance?
These are among the questions being raised not just in the interview above, but also in David Brin’s classic and award-winning Uplift books, which are soon to be re-released in the omnibus editions UPLIFT (UK | ANZ) and EXILES (UK | ANZ). And he also portrays the beginnings of the uplift process in his latest book: EXISTENCE (UK | ANZ), released as a paperback this November.
Last night Google’s UK headquarters in London bore witness to a very special event: a discussion between the UK’s three biggest SF writers, Iain M. Banks, Peter F. Hamilton and Alistair Reynolds. Eight lucky fans from across the world – who were all lucky enough to win a competition to join the conversation – sat in on the debate and supplied questions.
The hour-long discussion covered a wide range of subjects, such as worldbuilding versus characterisation, approaches to writing and the future of science fiction in an increasingly digital age. The entire hour-long session was watched live by hundreds of fans and was also filmed. Many thanks to the Google crew for their hospitality and for making the event possible!
Iain M. Banks is on tour in the UK next week, signing copies of his brilliant new Culture novel THE HYDROGEN SONATA [UK | US | ANZ] – the events are as follows:
In his stunning novel,2312 [UK | US | ANZ], Kim Stanley Robinson combines detailed research with a vivid imagination to create the most incredible descriptions of our galaxy 300 years in the future. While he was in the UK, we filmed him reading from the book at Toppings in Bath (big thank you to Jeanette Weston at Magus Studios).
Here he reads a passage depicting dawn on the planet Mercury… prepare to be entranced.
And for a chance to win a SIGNED hardback of 2312, comment below with your favourite quote from the reading! (Terms and Conditions apply)
Here in the Art Department, we work over a year in advance on our book covers, so it’s a thrill to finally be able to go back and share these process posts with you. Today we have a special treat, because last year when the fabulous illustrator Sam Weber was working on the Eli Monpress series for us, he invited us into his studio in Brooklyn to take a peek at THE SPIRIT WAR in progress.
I have really enjoyed working with Sam on this series because not only does he paint such gorgeous covers for us, he’s also a gigantic geek and loves to read the books as well. It really makes a difference in a cover when your artist really gets into the story and characters…especially in the case of Eli, master thief and scoundrel extraordinaire.
In the video below, Sam walks us through his process from thumbnails to final art. Even seeing him work up close, I still can’t believe he gets the amazing textures and luminosity he creates out of the watercolors. Let me tell you, if you are not an artist or have never tried painting in any medium, never mind watercolors, you have no idea how unforgiving a medium it can be.
I know the sketches and stages he shows go by pretty quickly in the video, so I’ll post a bunch of the cover stages so you can see what he’s describing up close. Enjoy! And look forward to part two, when we move past the process of physically creating the cover, and reveal how big of a geek Mr. Weber really is.