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Translating translations

This is a sincere hymn of praise to my wonderful German translator Astrid Finke. She has, at one stage or another, discussed all the following things with me (and many more) I’m unbelievably lucky to have found her.

Cartoon by Celine Kiernan

When I was asked to address the 2008 international translator’s conference in Dublin, I was quietly convinced that they’d invited the wrong Celine Kiernan by mistake. You could have coloured me surprised when I learned that it was because The Moorehawke Trilogy is considered a bit of a challenge translation-wise, and they wanted to hear the thought processes behind my often rather quirky use of language. Read the rest of this entry »

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The First Rule Is …

Fight Club was on cable last night. Despite having seen it more times than I can count, I settled in for another viewing. What can I say? It’s hard to resist Ed Norton and Brad Pitt and fighting and witty dialogue and clever plotting all in one. Read the rest of this entry »

Deals and Deliveries: Karen Miller

Photo Credit: Mary GT Webber

I’m delighted to say that Orbit will be the very proud publisher of a brand-new fantasy series by Karen Miller, launching 2012. The series title is the Tarnished Crown, and Karen describes it thus:

A tale of love and hate, treachery and power, the rise and fall of dynasties, and the remaking of a world. The theme of this fantasy saga is contained in its title: nobody is innocent. Every crown is tarnished. Redemption is possible but at a great price.

Karen Miller’s INNOCENT MAGE (US | UK) was one of our launch titles for Orbit in the US, following its publication earlier that year (2007) in the UK. Its sequel, THE AWAKENED MAGE (US | UK), followed hot on its heels, and these two books rapidly became one of the fastest selling new fantasy series of recent years. Karen is a natural storyteller, and a fearless one. Her next novel, EMPRESS (US | UK), introduced Hekat, quite possibly one of the scariest protagonists you will ever encounter.

Karen returned to the “Mage” sequence with THE PRODIGAL MAGE (US | UK), and has just completed the final book, THE RELUCTANT MAGE, which we will be publishing later this year.

And there’s some great news, too, for fans of Karen’s Rogue Agent series (written under the pen name K.E.Mills), which began with THE ACCIDENTAL SORCERER (US | UK). Karen will be writing at least two more books in the series, bringing the total to five.

Orbit will be publishing these books in the US, UK and Australia.

SHADOWRISE – get your wallpaper here

Desktop looking drab? iPhone lacking flair? What your gadgets need is a full-on fantasy makeover. And it just so happens that to celebrate today’s release of Shadowrise (UK/ANZ), the highly anticipated third volume in Tad Williams‘ Shadowmarch quartet, we’re giving away free wallpaper downloads based on the striking cover art. Just click on the links below to instantly spruce up your screen – all sizes catered for!

1024×768 1152×864 1280×800

1280 x 960 1280 x 1024 1440 x 900

1600 x 1200 1680 x 1050 1920 x 1200

1920 x 1440 2560 x 1600 iPhone

SFF bake off

Following our recent call for your culinary contributions to the SFF artistic world, Simon Morden has proved he can certainly ‘rise’ to the challenge (yes – baking pun intended).  Behold his fabulous creations: the Tardis and the Death Star, made for his son’s 9th and 10th birthdays, respectively.

According to Simon, ‘Next year he wants the USS Enterprise rendered in sponge and icing’. You’ll need something to drink with that Simon – any chance of some Vulcan nerve punch?*

Further edible entries can be submitted to orbit@littlebrown.co.uk

*Bad puns attributable to Darren Nash

Author post

Avatar: A Decent Cartoon with Good PR

Avatar is a decent movie.  It’s not great because A) it’s way too damn long, B) It doesn’t have enough scenes of things fighting other things, and C) It’s just not that groundbreaking. 

Don’t get me wrong.  I enjoyed it.  I thought it was pretty good for what it was.   But can we just admit that it was a decent sci fi animated film and leave it at that.  Honestly, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was a better movie.  It was funnier.  It was more creative.  It had more heart.  It wasn’t melodramatic.  It didn’t have long, boring segments reminding us that nature is good (a message I do happen to support by the way).  And, of course, Cloudy had Mr. T, who is even cooler than a twenty foot tall battle robot and a space jaguar combined. Read the rest of this entry »

So, in my trilogy The Godless World, quite a few characters don’t make it through to the end.  That’s ‘quite a few’ in the sense of ‘quite a lot’, which when you think about it is an odd little quirk of the English language.  Anyway, more than one reader noted the frequency with which significant players in the plot meet with abrupt and terminal misfortune.  I’m hardly the first fantasy author to explore that particular territory in recent years, but I’d like to assure people that this kind of thing isn’t always easy for the author.  I did give this stuff some thought.  In fact, let’s review roughly how it went (note character names have been redacted to keep the dread beast Spoilerage firmly in its cage):   Read the rest of this entry »


Ladies and gentlemen, I present the cover for the first book of the highly anticipated new trilogy by Brent Weeks. The Night Angel Trilogy (starting with the New York Times Bestseller THE WAY OF SHADOWS) has been a huge success worldwide and I know a lot of people have been dying to see what Mr. Weeks writes next. Well you’re going to have to wait a little longer for the book, but I can give you a little taste by showing you the kick-ass (yes, that’s a technical design term) cover for THE BLACK PRISM.

I don’t want to say too much about the new series (because the editor will kill me if I give too much away) but Brent has created a very cool new world, complete with solid characters and a really interesting magic system. If you liked the Night Angel Trilogy, you’ll love this (And if you haven’t read the Night Angel Trilogy, you should be ashamed of yourself, really.) Read the rest of this entry »

Author post

Ghost Novels

SOMETIMES I sit here drinking a good single malt and ponder my Ghost Novels. Well, let’s be honest: I sit here drinking a good single malt doing just about everything, to the point where Orbit has assigned me my own handler who attempts to stop or at least slow down my drinking. God bless him, he’s an unpaid intern who I often overhear muttering darkly to himself about his lot in life, but Orbit feels it’s necessary because of a few recent incidents we managed to keep out of the papers through bribery, threats, and promises of community service to come. Legally, I can say no more. Read the rest of this entry »

Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Our colleagues at Grand Central Publishing have just posted this extraordinary trailer for Seth Grahame-Smith’s ABRAHAM LINCOLN: VAMPIRE HUNTER. Watch Abe take on the vampire menace below!

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