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Descent by Ken MacLeod

DESCENT Ken MacLeod

Author of 2013 Arthur C. Clarke Award-nominated Intrusion tells a science fiction story for the twenty-first century – what happens when conspiracy theorists meet Big Brother?
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THE LASCAR’S DAGGERGlenda Larke

The start of a brand new epic fantasy trilogy from the author of the Stormlord series – full of scheming, spying, action and adventure.
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A Case for ARGs

Hello. May I take your order?

Over at io9.com Annalee Newitz has an interesting article on ARGs and pop culture marketing – The Argument Against ARGs. While she acknowledges that ARGs can be fun, she’s bothered by the ways that they blur marketing and entertainment.

“… what I’d like to see are ARGs for their own sakes — ARGs that involve fans not because they give away posters or free showings, but because they are genuinely compelling tales that you actually want to interact with.”

Jeff Somers has built small-scale ARGs for his books The Digital Plague and The Electric Church – both of which are extensions of the universe he’s created. For The Electric Church he scripted a story that involved a Monk and a hacker fighting for control of the “official” website of the Electric Church. The ARG was solved by the folks at Unfiction, and it’s still available for anyone willing to try and unlock its secrets. In solving the puzzle the player “wins” a resolution to the story the site is telling through its puzzles.
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Mike Carey review and interview at FantasyBookCritic

Vicious Circle by Mike Carey, UK PaperbackOver at FantasyBookCritic, blogger Robert Thompson has posted a hugely complimentary review of the second of Mike Carey‘s Felix Castor novels, Vicious Circle, which we published back in 2006 (and have since followed up with volume three in the series, Dead Men’s Boots).

Robert says:

Vicious Circle … makes a strong case for being one of the top urban fantasy novels released this year. Simply put, I think Mike Carey is one of the most exciting new authors in supernatural fiction today and I can’t recommend the Felix Castor series enough.”

He’s also added an email interview conducted with Mike, which includes an update on a number of writing projects (including a fifth Felix Castor novel), the progress on a couple of film projects, his many comics-related interests, and what Mike sees as the future of fiction in printed form.

Check out the full review an interview at FantasyBookCritic.blogspot.com.

Lilith Saintcrow – Comicon and beyond!

Well, not beyond really, but Lilith Saintcrow will be at Comicon in San Diego! She’ll be on the “Looking at Our World: Eye on the Present” panel along with Kelley Armstrong, L. A. Banks, Kate Brallier, Marjorie M. Liu, C. E. Murphy, Justine Musk, and moderator Samantha Sommersby ( Room 3). That’s a veritable who’s who of urban fantasy stars, so if you’re a fan this is a can’t miss event.

And stop by the Orbit booth to get your books signed and to pick up a sweet Orcs pin, which will likely be handed to you by a bedraggled looking guy with a few days’ old beard (me). You can also get some great stuff from our friends at Grand Central Publishing, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, and Yen Press. For a complete listing of HBGUSA events at Comicon, including panels with Stephenie Meyer, Jacqueline Carey, Brad Meltzer, Method Man and more, download our event schedule here.

If you can’t make it to Comicon, you can still catch up with Lilith at her sparklingly redesigned site, www.lilithsaintcrow.com – and stay tuned for a free, never before seen serialized novel coming very soon.

lilithsaintcrow.com

First Iain Banks Q&A posted at www.iain-banks.net

We’ve just posted the write-up of the first email Q&A session with Iain [M] Banks, over at his official website, www.iain-banks.net.

In case you missed the announcement first time around, we invited readers of this site and www.iain-banks.net to submit their questions for Iain – ideally something other than the usual sort of thing he tends to be asked at readings and convention appearances all the time – and then we selected a half-dozen question to put to Iain.

So, if you’d like to know which Culture character Iain would choose to write a novella on, or whether Iain would ever write a science-fiction novel that wasn’t filled with war and violence, or even which parts of Scotland Iain recommends for a visitor who’s also a fan of his books, then www.iain-banks.net is the place to head to next.

Ken MacLeod podcast interview at SciFiDimensions.com

The Night Sessions UK HardbackKen MacLeod is the subject of the latest podcast interview at www.scifidimensions.com.

The discussion ranges across a number of subjects, including Ken’s new novel, The Night Sessions, which we’re publishing in the UK next month, and his previous title, The Execution Channel, which we published in paperback back in March.

Interviewer John C Snider also discusses with Ken how it feels to be nominated for awards, his current thematic interest in writing near-future speculation with an alternate-history twist, Heim theory, Ken’s politics (and how his views affect his writing), new media, blogging, how The Night Sessions was (partly) inspired by a U2 video, and much more.

Download the full 40-minute podcast file by visiting www.scifidimensions.com.

Orbit Links for July 18 2008

Welcome to this week’s round-up of links of interest featuring Orbit authors that we’ve found (or have been sent in to us) over the course of the past seven days or so:

If you see any online articles, reviews or interviews that feature an Orbit author, please feel free to drop us a line and let us know! We’ll happily name-check your website or blog with a heads-up credit in return (please remember to provide us with a link…)

Robert Buettner stars in AISFP Podcast #47

Orphanage UK editionFormer military intelligence officer turned military-sf writer Robert Buettner is the subject of the 47th Adventures in SciFi Publishing podcast.

The first three volumes in Robert’s Jason Wander series are out now from Orbit US and will all be published by Orbit UK in August:

  • #1 – Orphanage [US / UK]
  • #2 – Orphan’s Destiny [US / UK]
  • #3 – Orphan’s Journey [US / UK]

I’ve just finished Orphanage myself and I thought it was a cracking, high-octane read that will definitely appeal to fans of Allan Cole & Chris Bunch’s Sten series, but don’t just take my word for it: check out these two recent reviews of Orphan’s Journey at bookreviewsandmore and sffworld.

Terry Brooks interviewed for SFSite.com

The Elves of Cintra by Terry Brooks UK pbOver at www.sfsite.com one of the bestselling fantasy authors of the past 30 years, Terry Brooks, has been interviewed by top UK fan-journo, Sandy Auden.

Sandy talks to Terry about the genesis of the Genesis of Shannara series – Armageddon’s Children and The Elves of Cintra – and how he planned the books to act as a bridge between his Word and the Void series and the long-running and hugely popular Shannara epic.

Terry goes into quite a bit of intriguing detail (warning: a few potential spoilers!) that fans of the series will love, and reveals the key importance of one particular character, who will become the focus of Genesis of Shannara volume three, The Gypsy Morph, which we’re publishing in the UK in September.

Check it out at www.sfsite.com.

The Big Idea: Marie Brennan

Marie Brennan pops in over at Whatever, John Scalzi’s blog, to talk about her novel, Midnight Never Come, and the Big Idea behind it:

What would faeries be doing while English history is trundling along? Of course, that automatically implies something: that the fae aren’t static, timeless creatures. They have a history, too, and it reflects, contrasts with, or otherwise interestingly comments on what humans are doing.

Fittingly, then, the first thing I came up with was Invidiana: Elizabeth’s dark mirror. Being a faerie, she’s all about immortal beauty; Elizabeth tried desperately to create an unchanging image of herself as the beautiful Virgin Queen, even as she aged and her teeth went bad and smallpox left its scars. Elizabeth never married; Invidiana is the most loveless creature you can imagine. And both of them, of course, are reigning queens of England. I originally just implied a metaphysical link between them, but in the book it’s explicit: when Elizabeth was imprisoned in the Tower during Mary’s reign, she made a secret deal with Invidiana, that they would help each other out.

Read the full piece here and pick up Midnight Never Come at all good booksellers today!

Freya and Harry star in ‘Interview with the Succubus’

Okay, okay… so there was this retired succubus and this model-47 femmebot… no, wait, that’s not how it goes. Alright, I’ve got it: a retired succubus and a trenchcoat-wearing wizard walk into a Chicago bar and… no, that’s not right, either.

But seriously, folks, Freya Nakamichi, star of the new Charles Stross novel Saturn’s Children, and the one and only Harry Dresden, loved the world over by fans of Jim Butcher‘s Dresden Files series, are the subjects of the latest couple of author Jackie Kessler’s Cat and Muse interviews.

In this ongoing series, fictional character Jezebel the former demon interviews fellow fictional characters about their lives, loves, longings and, in Freya’s case, fashion nightmares. Jezebel also chatted to Lune, of Marie Brennan‘s Midnight Never Come fame, not so long ago. Check them all out, well worth a tea-break read!

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