Linus Torvalds (Linux anyone?) weighs in on Brent Weeks’ Night Angel Trilogy:
“Happy Thanksgiving / Black Friday shop-til-you-drop-fest!” to our US readers. “Chin-up, it’s nearly the weekend!” to our UK readers. “Smile, it’s the weekend already!” to our Australian readers. And to everyone else: hello, and welcome, whatever your timezone, to our regular round-up of Orbit Author links:
The half-hour drama, entitled ‘Hide and Seek’, will be broadcast on Sunday January 25th as part of a weekly series of dark, unsettling pieces narrated by writer, actor and the BBC’s new ‘Man in Black’, Mark Gatiss (League of Gentlemen, Doctor Who).
The ‘Man in Black’ first appeared on BBC radio in the 1940s, delivering his chilling tales to spellbound listeners in ‘Appointment With Fear’. He returned in ‘Fear on 4′ in the ’70s and again in the late ’80s / early ’90s. Mark Gatiss takes up the dark mantle to tell five new stories, including Mike Carey’s.
Here’s how the BBC press release describes ‘Hide and Seek':
Amelia Stowe lies confined to a bed, her eyes bandaged, while she recovers from an operation to remove a tumour from the visual cortex of her brain. With long days of recuperation stretching before her, she agrees to take part in an experiment conducted by one of the hospital psychiatrists, Dr Bewlay. He’s developed a method of unlocking and recording memories from very early childhood.
It’s the first night of the experiment and Amelia is sent into a deep hypnotic trance – conversations drift in and out of focus; fragments of long-forgotten nursery rhymes float to the surface but who does that voice belong to which keeps whispering through her mind, claiming to have found her and which, more frighteningly, is still there in the room when she wakes up?
I’m looking forward to that one. Sounds like ideal entertainment for a long, dark Sunday evening in January. Spread the word, fright fans, and we’ll put a reminder out on the site nearer the time.
- November 27th, 2008-
The Night Angel Trilogy by debut author Brent Weeks is continuing to create a bit of a buzz-storm around the genre-blogs as the amount of online coverage of his first two books – The Way of Shadows [US | UK | AUS] and Shadow’s Edge [US | UK | AUS] – continues to build up. And with the official publication date of the series-concluder Beyond the Shadows [US | UK | AUS] right around the corner, we’ve already seen an early review for that one as well…
Here’s the latest batch of content we’ve spotted in our RSS readers, to be added to our first round-up item, posted a few weeks ago.
A couple of interviews to tell you about first: Brent talks to Gav over at NextRead.co.uk about big fantasy and his approach to writing the Night Angel Trilogy. And he’s on the spot at BookSpotCentral.com as Damon asks Brent about everything from world-building to characterisation to cover art.
Reviews now, and we’ll start with a plethora of new ones for The Way of Shadows: Rob Bedford covered the book for SFFWorld.com and declared it “the most impressive debut novel [he’s] read this year”. Graeme Flory says The Way of Shadows “will grip you with its intrigue and swashbuckling exploits” at Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review. Mark at My Favourite Books says that Weeks’ debut is “deft and clever story, skillfully delivered”. Jessica from Toronto’s World’s Biggest Bookstores writes, at Sci-Fi Fan Letter that this one of those kind of books: “You know the kind – that book you can’t put down even though you have to eat, sleep or work.” And Hagelrat, posting at Un:Bound was full of high praise, concluding: “It’s a wonderfully rich traditional fantasy and it’s a delight to finally read a novel of this sort that not only stands alone as a story whilst leading on to a trilogy, but actually delivers that extra finesse of handling and realism of character and motive that lacks in a lot of books.”
Shadow’s Edge is up next, with Jeff C at Fantasy Book News & Reviews finding it not quite as hot as the first instalment, but still one that left him excited to read the conclusion. Rob Bedford is back with a second review at SFFWorld.com and concludes that volume two is perhaps more of an introspective look at the character development of Weeks’ protagonist than the first, hence the contrast. But Paul Stotts, writing for Blood of the Muse declares it to be a terrific middle-trilogy instalment, with an ending that offers an “unforgettable conclusion” as well as “intriguing new directions for the next book to explore”.
So far, we’ve seen a couple of mentions for Beyond the Shadows, both of them from the same reviewer: Jeff C at Fantasy Book News & Reviews dropped an early mention, saying it was… well, the second word he used was “excellent”. He then came back later on with a full review, in which he concluded that The Night Angel Trilogy was “probably [his] favorite series of the year”.
Brent Weeks has been collecting reviews over at his own website as well, so do double-check there in case there are a couple we haven’t spotted ourselves. And do drop us a line if you’ve covered these, or any other Orbit titles, on your own blog or website so we can give your piece a mention in a future coverage or links round-up.
Is it Friday already? This week has just flown by. Must be time for another round-up of Orbit Author online activity (try saying that ten times fast with a mouth full of toffee…)
With Dark Space (Book One of the Sentients of Orion series), I began small. Most of the narrative focused on one planet with tantalizing glimpses (I hoped!) of a much grander storyline. In Chaos Space I step firmly into that wider landscape, delving deeper into the psyches of the less-developed characters and increasing the stakes for the heroine.
It was a planned seduction of the reader; become intimate with a couple of the players and perhaps, maybe … a little intrigued by the lesser known ones. For me then, the most satisfying and challenging thing about Chaos Space was bringing all those disparate strands together. Kind of like a dance.
Not so much a space opera as an interplanetary mambo…
Marianne de Pierres is also the author of the Parrish Plessis novels, and you can find out all about her work at her official website, www.mariannedepierres.com as well as catching up with all her latest developments via her regularly updated blog.
It looks like we’ve been having some trouble with our contact forms since the end of last week, after we moved the site to the new server (which is somewhat galling as they were working perfectly when they were tested immediately after the move…)
Our webguy is looking into the issue and hopes to have the forms back up and running before too long, but in the meantime the Contact Us and email newsletter pages have been re-established with old-school lists of email addresses.
Sincere apologies for the inconvenience, but if you’ve tried to send an email to us since last Wednesday evening, or have asked to subscribe to or unsubscribe from any of our ebulletin lists, then please do visit the relevant page and try again!
- November 14th, 2008-
Hello again and welcome to another weekly Orbit Author links round-up. Quite a lot to tell you about this week, so here we go:
As always, 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…)
Here’s a bit of the old explanatory from J. V.:
Here it is, the chance to win all sorts of goodies: a complete set of signed J.V. Jones books (seven and counting), artwork, cover flats, collectible (and extremely rare) galley copies, etc. You get the idea: extremely cool prizes will be given.
All you have to do is take a photo of yourself and A Sword From Red Ice. Mug it up for the camera, dress up, dress down, use experimental media, commandeer family and friends, get outside, stay inside, reenact a scene from the book, eat a sandwich, go on location to the bookstore or the woods. Whatever you do: Take a photo. Then send that photo [to J. V. – email address given in her Journal]. We’ll post it on the website, everyone can have their say, and may the best photo win.
Simple as that, folks, but please do visit JVJones.com (where a few early entries have been posted already) for full competition rules and the email address to send your photos to [N.B. Don’t send your photos to us here at Orbit, in case we don’t get a chance to send them on to J. V. before the deadline!]
An easy thing to tell you about Orphan’s Alliance is that Jason Wander – high school dropout, accidental Major General, terminal wise ass and reluctant hero – returns, and so do the Slugs. But Alliance shows you things military SF usually doesn’t, like Paleozoic swamps and monsters, and Parisian sidewalk cafés. Alliance also shows you things military SF often does, like gravity-bending fighters, vast battles for galactic crossroads, and trench warfare.
A hard thing to tell you is that Jason is growing up, and growth hurts.
C.S. Lewis, gravely wounded in World War I, wrote about soldiers who write about war that “We know how much of the reality the romantic view left out. But we also know that heroism is a real thing, that all the plumes and flags and trumpets … were not there for nothing [but] to honour … what is truly honourable … precisely because everyone knew how horrible war is.”
Orphan’s Alliance is out now from Orbit US and will be published in January 2009 by Orbit UK and Orbit Australia. Orphan’s Alliance is the fourth of Robert’s Jason Wander novels, the first of which was Orphanage [UK | US | AUS].