- - June 24th, 2014
For those of you craving something new and exciting now that E3 is over, Orbit has the answer. Baptism of Fire, the latest book in the Witcher series and the basis for the popular video games, is on shelves now! Do not miss this epic adventure featuring Geralt’s latest quest.
The Wizards Guild has been shattered by a coup and, in the uproar, Geralt was seriously injured. The Witcher is supposed to be a guardian of the innocent, a protector of those in need, a defender against powerful and dangerous monsters that prey on men in dark times.
But now that dark times have fallen upon the world, Geralt is helpless until he has recovered from his injuries.
While war rages across all of the lands, the future of magic is under threat and those sorcerers who survive are determined to protect it. It’s an impossible situation in which to find one girl – Ciri, the heiress to the throne of Cintra, has vanished – until a rumor places her in the Niflgaard court, preparing to marry the Emperor.
Injured or not, Geralt has a rescue mission on his hands.
Praise for The Witcher series:
“The character interplay is complex, unsentimental and anchored in brutal shared history. All bodes well for twisty plotting to come.” — SFX
“Like Mieville and Gaiman, Sapkowski takes the old and makes it new.” — Foundation (UK)
“Sapkowski revitalizes the genre with energetic and compelling writing. A breath of fresh air in a well-worn genre. Don’t miss it!” — Dreamwatch (UK)
This is the third of the Witcher novels by Andrzej Sapkowski. And if you haven’t yet, make sure to check out where it all started with The Last Wish, Blood of Elves, and The Time of Contempt available now.
- - June 23rd, 2014
To celebrate the release of the seventh book in the Iron Druid chronicles, SHATTERED (UK | ANZ), we asked you to come up with your best questions for author Kevin Hearne (or Oberon). We had some absolutely fantastic responses, and Kevin has answered a selection of the best below.
Q. How did you get interested in Druids and how have you collected your information of how Atticus understands his magic?
KH: I got interested in Druids because I’m a tree hugger. The modern-day Druids, of course, are revivalists who are basing their ceremonies on nineteenth-century guesswork. The ancient Druids never wrote anything down except for things like property boundaries on stones marked with Ogham. Atticus’s magic system, therefore, is almost entirely my fabrication. His abilities are suggested by legends, however: multiple accounts speak of shape-shifting, divination, and even of teleportation (which I presented as a shifting between planes). There are also accounts of weather manipulation, which Atticus has used in a small way in the first two books. I unified those legendary Druidic abilities under the system of binding.
Q. Which super villain do you think Atticus would have a tough time defeating?
KH: Going to go a bit obscure on you: Cyclone, an old opponent of Spider-Man’s that I always found to be quite scary as a kid. He controls the wind in a hundred-foot radius around his body and can pluck the very air out of your lungs, preventing you from taking another breath. He can also create tornado-force whirlwinds about himself, which he can use defensively (any strike with Fragarach would be deflected) or offensively, lifting Atticus off the ground and cutting him off from the earth. I’m sure there are other super villains who could also succeed but that’s the first one that came to mind.
Q. What is Atticus’ favourite pop culture tshirt?
KH: He has one that says WHAT THE FRAK in really large letters and then, in a much smaller font underneath, “happened in Season 4 of Battlestar Galactica?” Because it was a mess.
Q. How is it that a Druid who has had so much grief from the Fae, came to name his dog after Shakespeare’s King of the Fairies?
KH: Atticus thinks of it as wry jest. He knows very well that the Fae are actually ruled by women – Brighid, the Morrigan, etc. – and Oberon & Titania were merely Shakespeare’s creations.
Q. Does Oberon have an accent when he ‘talks’?
KH: Great question! He has the standard Western American accent – in other words, not anything southern or northeastern – mixed with the slightly manic tone of an excited, hungry, and horny hound. Atticus adopted him when he had been living in America for a while and of course Oberon’s pop culture diet in the States included plenty of American movies and TV.
- - June 20th, 2014
Last week we attended the David Gemmell Awards ceremony – now in its sixth year – and were thrilled to see PROMISE OF BLOOD by Brian McClellan win the Morningstar category for best debut novel.
EMPEROR OF THORNS by Mark Lawrence won the Legend award for best novel, while the artwork for the same book – created by Jason Chan - won the Ravenheart category for best cover art.
Many congratulations to Brian and his fellow winners, and also to all the other authors and designers who were shortlisted.
Brian’s new novel, THE CRIMSON CAMPAIGN (UK | US | ANZ) is out now in hardback, ebook and audio. The third and final novel in the Powder Mage trilogy, THE AUTUMN REPUBLIC, will be published in February 2015.
Praise for PROMISE OF BLOOD:
‘Just plain awesome . . . Innovative magic, quick-paced plot, interesting world. I had a blast’ – Brandon Sanderson
‘An historically influenced fantastical romp filled with machismo, intrigue and magic’ – SciFiNow
‘Promise of Blood is the best debut I’ve read in ages’ – Peter V. Brett
‘A French Revolution with wizards; McClellan’s debut packs some serious heat’ – Kirkus Reviews
‘Tense action, memorable characters, rising stakes . . . Brian McClellan is the real thing’ – Brent Weeks
- - June 19th, 2014
If you’re one of the thousands of readers who have read and loved this year’s most original and heartbreaking thriller, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS, then you already know what a special girl Melanie is. But what you read wasn’t the whole story.
We have a secret extra scene, set after the events of THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS, to share with you. To read it, all you have to do is share Melanie’s story with your friends via the social network of your choice and you’ll receive the chapter absolutely free. Click the ‘Pay with a Tweet’ button below to get started.
You already know Melanie’s secret.
Now it’s time to share her gift.
THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS by M.R. Carey is out now in paperback in the UK and Australia and in hardcover in the US. E-book and audio editions are available in all countries.
If you were to ask me to list my five favorite novels of all time, I’d probably give a slightly different answer every year. I’m always discovering something new and glorious that blows my mind and leaves me in a giddy state of wonder. But one book that will never leave that list is Ender’s Game. In fact, it’s currently perched there at the number one spot, and I doubt anything will ever unseat it.
I’m not alone in this. For millions of readers, reading Ender’s Game was a transformative experience. It taught us that characters in a book don’t have to feel like characters in a book. They can feel like real, genuine friends.
That was my experience, anyway. Ender and Valentine and Bean and Dink. It’s like I knew these kids and felt a connection to them. Our hearts were knit together, as the saying goes.
So when Orson Scott Card invited me to join him in writing prequel novels to Ender’s Game, I was a little gun shy. I worried that fans would be expecting another Ender’s Game and that if our novels didn’t transform them and wow them as much as the original, they’d crinkle their noses and hate me for life.
Remember when George Lucas announced that he was going to make The Phantom Menace? I went fanboy bonkers. Another Star Wars movie? Glory hallelujah! I couldn’t believe it. I’m going to sit in a theater again and have an experience just like I had watching the originals.
And then the movie came out and it was, um, less than what I had hoped.
Is this the curse of all prequels, I wondered.
Scott Card put my mind at ease reminding me that we weren’t writing Ender’s Game. That isn’t the goal. This is something different.
So I dived in, and learned quite a bit along the way . . . Read the rest of this entry »
- - June 17th, 2014
CIBOLA BURN (US | UK | AUS) is on sale today in hardcover, ebook, and audiobook. James Holden and crew are back in the fourth book of James S.A. Corey’s sensational Expanse series. They’ll face a host of new challenges on the wild frontier of uncharted space now that mankind has freed itself from the confines of its solar system.
Starting this week, Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck (the writing duo behind the James S.A. Corey pseudonym) will be on tour. Visit the James S.A. Corey Facebook page to see if they’re coming to a town near you.
What’s more, we have some incredible news to announce today that will be sure to please all of you. Check out our press release below. Read the rest of this entry »
SHATTERED (UK | ANZ), the brand new Iron Druid Chronicles novel from Kevin Hearne is released today. Read a guest post below from Kevin about what it was like to write it . . .
When you write a first-person series for a few years you start to hear voices – other voices than your main character, that is. To let those voices tell their own story you have to give them their own chapters, and I began that process in the sixth book of the Iron Druid Chronicles, HUNTED ( UK | AUS). That was the first time Atticus’s former apprentice, Granuaile, had a few chapters to herself. The change from Atticus was lovely as an injection of variety but I quickly realized that the new point of view allowed me to develop both Granuaile and Atticus in ways not previously available.
The experiment worked so well (for me, anyway) that I expanded the practice in SHATTERED. We still get plenty of Atticus and Oberon in the seventh installment of the Iron Druid Chronicles, but Granuaile gets equal time and so does Atticus’s old archdruid, who goes by the modern name of Owen Kennedy. Writing in three very different voices was a delightful challenge for me and I enjoyed exploring their musings on the nature of power and how it should be employed. I also enjoyed making all of them very uncomfortable.
Both Granuaile and Owen have to adjust to a very different life from the one they led before. Granuaile must carefully choose her path now that she’s been bound to the earth and possesses great power, while Owen, brought forward two thousand years into the future, must struggle to adapt to a completely alien culture and level of technology. And Atticus, normally so confident in his abilities, learns that he missed some key facts and the true situation with the gods bears little resemblance to what he thought it was.
Writing from three first-person views—alternating between chapters—also forced me to write in a nonlinear fashion. I discovered that when I tried to write in order it was slow going, because each voice had its own verbal tics and style and switching between them required a mental adjustment. Once I ditched the idea that I had to write from beginning to end, work proceeded much faster. I would write three Owen chapters or four Granuaile chapters and stay in those voices for days, piecing them together in order later. And because of that I managed to finish writing the book in only five months, which for me is quite fast. (And I know that some speedy readers out there will finish the book in a single day and then ask, “When’s the next one?” at which point I will weep and clutch a teddy bear.)
I hope everyone will enjoy getting to know Granuaile and Owen a bit better and appreciate the light they shed on Atticus as well. Many thanks to you all for reading; I do hope to get across the pond someday to meet you.
SHATTERED is available now to buy in the UK and Australia.
- - June 16th, 2014
With supporters from Joss Whedon and Martina Cole to Lucy Mangan and Jenny Colgan, THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS is definitely a strong contender for this year’s most talked about book.
We’ve gathered a selection of the immense praise it’s had since hardcover publication in the UK in January, but there’s plenty more where that came from. Out in paperback this week in the UK, and released in beautiful hardcover in the US last week, we can’t keep track of how many people are expressing their love for this book.
If you’ve not read it yet, visit the official Facebook page or read the first chapter today and discover Melanie’s secret for yourself.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - June 12th, 2014
Great news for fantasy fans who prefer to listen to tales of epic adventure, rather than reading them: BLOOD SONG is now available as an audio download!
Anthony Ryan’s powerful novel took the fantasy world by storm last summer, receiving huge critical acclaim and going on to become the UK’s bestselling epic fantasy debut in 2013.
Now audio fans can get in on the action and follow Vaelin Al Sorna’s journey, as he progresses from a callow youth to someone you really wouldn’t want to find yourself in a swordfight with.
BLOOD SONG is epic fantasy in every sense of the word, featuring everything we love about the genre: intense battles, shady politics and mysterious powers. Oh, and a bad-tempered horse.
You can listen to a sample of the BLOOD SONG audio edition below:
TOWER LORD, the highly-anticipated sequel to BLOOD SONG, will be released in audio next month – alongside the hardback and ebook editions.
Praise for BLOOD SONG:
‘A tremendous debut . . . Fast-paced, action-packed and character-driven’ – Fantasy Book Critic
‘An utterly engrossing high fantasy epic from a major new talent’ – Buzzfeed
‘A top contender for most impressive debut of the year’ – SFFWorld
‘Epic fantasy at its best’ – BookBag
‘An instant sensation’ – Read Dream Relax