- - October 13th, 2009
I know you’re all abuzz about the first Alexia Tarabotti novel, Soulless, but I thought I’d fan the flames a bit and introduce the cover for the next book, Changeless by Gail Carriger.
I know I’m not supposed to have favorites here at Orbit, but there are a few series I get very excited about continuing to work on as the new books come in. Nicole Peeler’s Jane True is definitely one, and Gail Carriger’s Alexia Tarabotti is absolutely another. What can I say? I have a soft spot for quirky and well-crafted heroines. And well-imagined settings with a lot of detail. It certainly makes the covers easier to picture in my head.
Also, this kind of illustrates how strangely ahead of present Art has to be. In “real-time” Soulless has just launched and is flying off the shelves and gaining great reviews from industry and fans alike. However, in “Art-time” the cover for Changeless is already done and I am already getting ready to work on Book #3 as soon as the first draft of the manuscript comes in. A little bizarre, I know, but heaven for the fan inside this Creative Director. Read the rest of this entry »
- - October 13th, 2009
*warning: contains Monsters! Aliens! and Robots!
Now October is here, a reading essential is the fabulous Red Claw by the talented Philip Palmer, out this month (UK I US). We’d already had a heap of interest in this title, not least from the Guardian, who said ‘Red Claw is that rare treat, an intelligent action adventure replete with intellectual rigour, human insight and superb storytelling’.
While such praise is always hugely welcome, we can’t say we’re entirely surprised as we expected great things after Debatable Space (UK I US)! Red Claw is another fast-paced package that somehow manages to contain within its straining covers a rollercoaster of a plot with some big explosions, a plethora of strange new aliens grown in the vat of the author’s imagination and some entertaining philosophizing. It’s also dark and gritty with flashes of strangeness to counterbalance Philip’s great sense of fun. All in all, a unique mix of elements woven together to make something pretty special. Read the rest of this entry »
I like toys. We all do, whether we admit it or not. Cars, houses, and clothes are grown up toys. Ninety-five percent of the SUV owners in the universe are merely expressing their inner child’s frustration that they can’t buy a sportscar that transforms into a robot. And if most of us were honest with ourselves, we’d just go ahead and admit that we’d pay through the nose if we could pull a hidden lever and have our house change into a secret command bunker.
Games can be a great way of indulging our inner child while engaging our outer adult. Studies have shown that playing video games not only increases visual acuity, but can have positive psychological effects. Tetris helps reduce post-traumatic stress. Halo teaches us to always keep an eye on our forcefield meter. And if I ever have to fight a giant robot, experience tells me to look for the glowing points because that’s the only way to drain the robot’s health. Read the rest of this entry »
Well, what started out odd has only gotten odder.
Things began pretty well. This week I bought some decent cowboy boots, a nice ostrich pair, and that was fun. Then later I spotted Dan entering his gate, and he seemed very pleased. Practically glowing. He said he’d made some huge steps very recently, but he wasn’t sure so he wasn’t going to get my hopes or anything. He had wads of tissue paper stuck up his nose, though. I forgot to ask him what that was about. Then later the washing machines were gone, and I took that for a good sign.
Then last night things got a bit worse. Read the rest of this entry »
- - October 12th, 2009
And the first new cover for the Spring/Summer 2010 season is the next book in the Jane True series: Tempest Rising by Nicole Peeler. (Just because I will be seeing her in the Orbit HQ this week and I don’t want her to kick my butt for not posting it yet)
Of course I went back to the fabulous (and award-winning) illustrator Sharon Tancredi for our next look at Jane True. Tracking the Tempest finds Jane learning how to cope with her new view of the world, and the powers that come with it, in the midst of a very action-packed story. Where in the first book, Tempest Rising, we had more of a portrait of Jane on the cover, this time we wanted an action shot. Jane is learning how to control her powers, and growing as a character, and I think Sharon did a fabulous job of picking this scene out of the story to illustrate that.
I love how Sharon kept the theme going from the first book with the illustrated frame, and a new take on the heart icon that is very apt to the story.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - October 9th, 2009
Sorry folks, I know I’ve been a little absent from the new-and-improved-now-with-author-posts orbit blog, but, as you might surmise from the photo to the left, I was off getting hitched. Not only that, but I had been feverishly working for months on the covers for the new Spring/Summer 2010 season, finished almost every one, had a huge Sales meeting here at Orbit HQ, and then ran off and got married in a supremely geek-flavored way. Among other geeky touches, Han and Leia over there were the cake toppers, and I made all the wedding party enter the reception to the opening theme to Star Wars.
Just wanted to let you loyal readers know, Orbit HQ is staffed with geeks at literally every level.
Now let the cover posts commence! (And yes, work on the WORST COVER EVER continues…)
Hello again, internet. Hope you’re doing well. It’s still been raining here a great deal, and I’ve found that my backyard doesn’t drain well at all. Arnold our Yorkie has to sidle along the edge of the grass at our porch to find a dry spot to use as a bathroom. I’d pity him if the sight wasn’t so awkward and hilarious.
Somehow, in the midst of all this rain, my wife has managed to collect three nails in one tire of her Prius. It’s almost amazing, her bad luck. I’ve never had a nail in my tires at all.
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Had a beer with Dan the other night. I really enjoy having a neighbor on hand to have a beer with, and I think Dan does, too. We split a six pack of Lone Star in his shed. He seemed a little despondent, or at least more than usual, and after a while I gathered that his creation was giving him trouble.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - October 8th, 2009
Jane True #1 Out in November
Nicole Peeler’s debut novel TEMPEST RISING is out next month – but you can read chapter one on her website now.
Rockabill, Maine, is a small town with a rapidly growing supernatural population. Like her fellow citizens, Jane True, a 26-year old bookstore clerk, loves the ocean, but even her hardiest fellow Downeasters hesitate to go for a plunge in the surf every night, be it winter or summer. The few who know of her solitary swims are OK with it, of course; it is part of her heritage, and the supernatural is as traditional in New England as lobster rolls. But after she discovers a murder, she realizes she’s being drawn further into a world populated by creatures of myths and legends, sometimes lovely, often terribly dangerous. Creatures such as Ryu, the young (and, need we add, handsome) vampire sent to investigate the murder, and who’d very much like to be her new friend.
TEMPEST RISING is fast, fantastic seaside fun. Look for the book in November, and keep up with Nicole’s adventures on her blog.
Well, for the first time, hello everyone! My name, as you can probably tell already, is Robert Jackson Bennett, and I’m currently about to be a first time author. It’ll be official in January 2010 when Mr. Shivers comes out from Orbit, which is about four months away. That’s all self-promotion stuff, however, and I have a blog already started for whatever tooting is necessary for my own horn. To be honest, I’ve never written in any official kind of capacity on the internet, so I’m not sure what to say. Easily the most curious thing that’s going on with me at the moment, though, is what’s happening next door.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - October 6th, 2009
Gail Carriger’s debut novel SOULLESS (the first volume in The Parasol Protectorate) went on sale last week. Readers have been awaiting this one since the buzz began this past spring. Publishers Weekly called it ‘intoxicatingly witty.” Romantic Times gave it four and a half stars. Time’s Lev Grossman, blurbing the book, called it “ravishing” and said that it has “all the delicate charm of a Victorian parasol, and all the wicked force of a Victorian parasol secretly weighted with brass shot and expertly wielded.”
Pretty good for a start. Now that it’s out in the stores, what are people saying?
io9.com:“A character-driven romp with great worldbuilding and delicious rapier wit that recalls Austen and P.G.Wodehouse.”
Fresh Fiction:: “There are not many books I can recommend that will make you want to drop everything you are doing and run out to your nearest bookstore to buy. SOULLESS is one of them.”
SFRevu : “I was enchanted from start to finish.”
Falcata Times:“It’s a corker and definitely something that’s new in the field that I suspect will win Gail fans by the bucketload.”
Photo by Robert Andruszko
The verdict. Extremely victorious, and getting more so every day.
Oh, and don’t forget to pick up a piece of treacle tart on your way back from the bookstore.