- - September 24th, 2013
This debut introduces a self-deprecating, wisecracking, and honorable-to-a-fault hero who can stand up to such established protagonists as Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden and Seanan McGuire’s October Daye….” Library Journal (starred review)
John is not your typical prince charming figure. He’s not going to passing very many manners class, but he can kill a vampire in at least ten different ways. Which is good because he’s going to need all of those skills in CHARMING (US | UK) by Elliott James.
Bringing a unique new spin to the familiar supernatural creatures and folklore, CHARMING is the debut urban fantasy not to be missed. Want to hear more? Read an excerpt or check out this interview with Elliot James:
What made you want to become an author?
The same things that make anyone want to become an author, really. A combination of crippling loneliness, habitual lying, greed, and delusions of grandeur. I mean, I could slather it on about how the imagination is the key to freeing the mind and all that, but let’s face it, ultimately it all comes down to the wild parties, the women, and the limos full of cash. Speaking of which, when are those getting here anyway? [Looks at watch.] Plus I like to read.
When did you start writing?
At the age of five. It was kindergarten, and I penned an opus about a backward planet where cows gave chocolate milk (I’m not sure how that’s backward, but it made sense at the time) and grown-ups went to school to get away from their jobs and learn how to play from kids. The thing I still think is kind of cool about that story is that every word was spelled backward. Or misspelled backward in many cases. After that I flirted around with writing. I had a minor fling with journalism, briefly got involved with advertising, and lived with teaching English. But I didn’t really get serious about writing until a few years ago, and then writing rejected my first proposal. Rejected quite a few of my proposals, actually. But I persisted, and now I’m ready to settle down and start having kids. Or maybe writing is. OK, I kind of lost track of the half-assed metaphor I had going there.
Read the full interview here.
If CHARMING has caught your eye, be sure to check out the earlier adventures of John Charming too in these three short stories by Elliott James:
- - September 24th, 2013
Everyone’s talking about ANCILLARY JUSTICE, the brand new space opera from Ann Leckie.
We’ve collected some of the commentary for you here below!
Leckie’s fabulous debut is released 1st October, but the praise is already coming in.
You can preorder your copy today!
- - September 18th, 2013
There is only a week and a half left to vote for the 2013 Gemmell Awards. Polls close on September 30th, so be sure to cast your ballot before then.
Here are the Orbit titles shortlisted in each of the three categories, and the links through which you can vote for your favourites!
Legend Award (best fantasy novel) – vote here
RED COUNTRY (US) by Joe Abercrombie
THE GATHERING OF THE LOST (UK | ANZ) by Helen Lowe
THE BLINDING KNIFE (UK | US | ANZ) by Brent Weeks
Morningstar Award (best debut fantasy novel) - vote here
THE RED KNIGHT (US ) by Miles Cameron
MALICE (US) by John Gwynn
Ravenheart Award (best fantasy book cover/artist) – vote here
THE BLINDING KNIFE (UK | US | ANZ)/ Silas Manhood
“It is those who desire the good of their friends for the friends’ sake that are most truly friends, because each loves the other for what he is, and not for any incidental quality.”
According to Wikipedia, Dave Carnie coined the term bromance in Skateboard Magazine in the 1990s, referring to the close relationships between skaters. The term bled out into the media and soon House and Wilson were so labeled. So were the Men in Black, even Kirk and Spock who predated bromance by decades. Thelma and Louise are also a bromance of sorts—you wouldn’t call it a sismance, would you?
In fiction, Bromance applies to any same sex characters who have a non-sexual, homosocial relationship. Usually this includes lots of conflict resulting from an unlikely pairing similar to a traditional romance. He’s from Winterfell, she’s from Hogwartz, can they ever find common ground? The glue in a romance is sexual attraction and doesn’t always have to be explained; in a bromance the connection is more event driven and usually part of the story.
Before the 1990s bromances were often found in the form of buddy cop stories and made popular by such movies and TV shows as: Lethal Weapon, 48 Hours, Cagney and Lacy and Starsky and Hutch. Police shows were prone to such fare because officers tend to work in pairs, but the tradition goes further back—seriously far back.
The first of what we now call a bromance has to be The Epic of Gilgamesh, with Gilgamesh and Enkidu starring in the first twelve part fantasy series. As in most bromances, they hated each other at the start then teamed up to kick butt. I’m sure if I could read the original first-edition tablet I’d find some witty one liners. Read the rest of this entry »
- - September 17th, 2013
The second volume of Michael J. Sullivan’s Riyria Chronicles is out today in paperback and ebook editions.
The Founding Fields writes: “Michael J. Sullivan’s The Rose and the Thorn manages to be even better than The Crown Tower, making this book, and the duology – one of my favourite reads of 2013.” And Reading Realms says “So far, all of Sullivan’s Riyria books have been very well paced, sword-and-sorcery style action with strong characters, making them fun and easy to read. I would recommend them to any fan of fantasy, new or veteran, young or old.”
You can read an interview with Michael about this prequel series at Fantasy Book Critic.
And check out the first chapter right here!
- - September 12th, 2013
First she had us on the run from zombies. Now Mira Grant is delving into the dangers that might hiding inside our own bodies.
PARASITE (US | UK | ANZ), out in October, starts a brand-new series from the bestselling author of FEED (US | UK | ANZ), DEADLINE (US | UK | ANZ), and BLACKOUT (US | UK | ANZ). In PARASITE, disease is virtually unknown thanks to SymboGen Corporation’s Intestinal Bodyguard, a genetically engineered tapeworm. But there are some unanticipated side effects…
You can get a taste of PARASITE in this excerpt at Popular Science. And, if you’re on the west coast, Mira may be coming to your city when PARASITE is released! Details of the tour are below.
Tuesday, October 29
7 PM: Borderlands, 866 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA
Wednesday, October 30
7 PM: Books Inc. Mountain View, 301 Castro Street, Mountain View, CA
Thursday, October 31
7 PM: Mysterious Galaxy, 7051 Clairemont Mesa Boulevard, San Diego, CA
Friday, November 1
7 PM: B&N #2280, 401 NE Northgate Way #1100, Seattle, WA
Saturday, November 2
2 PM: B&N #2262, 12000 SE 82nd Avenue, Portland, OR
- - September 11th, 2013
The time is almost upon us.
The film version of ENDER’S GAME – one of the most popular and critically acclaimed science fiction novels ever written – will be out in the UK on 25th October .
To celebrate, we’re very pleased to present the final cover for our Orbit film tie-in edition – available from 3rd October.
Starring Harrison Ford as Colonel Hyrum Graff, Ben Kingsley as Mazer Rackham and Asa Butterfield as the child prodigy Ender himself, we have very high hopes for this movie. The trailer looks spectacular – check out the latest extended version if you haven’t seen it yet.
You can also keep up to date with news on the film on the Ender’s Game Facebook page.
And if you haven’t read the worldwide bestselling, award-winning book behind this film yet, read a free extract to find out what you’re missing.
The first question I get when family or friends find out that I have a novel being published is: “What’s it about?”
So I go ahead and tell them: “GET AWAY FROM ME! I HAVE TO GO FEED MY TURTLES! I’LL CUT YOU!”
Okay, that’s not true. I just thought it was more dramatic than what I actually tell them, which is that CHARMING is about John Charming, the modern day descendant of all those characters named Prince Charming from the fairy tales. In my fictional world, there wasn’t some crazed serial bigamist inspiring all of those different stories, there was in fact an entire family line of witch finders and dragon slayers extending through the centuries.
The next question comes in one of three variations. People either say “Oh cool! How did you get that idea?” Or “Oh cool! How come nobody has ever thought of that before?” Or just “Oh.”
My response to that is a little more complicated. I know there’s a lot of fairy tale stuff out there right now, and some of it I’ve read and watched and some of it I haven’t, and I talk about that in an interview in the back of my book.
I also mention that I was an army brat. We moved pretty regularly, and my grandparent’s farm was an island of stability in my childhood, the place we always went to on vacations or between moves or when my father was going to be gone for a long time. My grandmother was an English teacher and a pack rat, and her house was stuffed with books on folk lore and fairy tales and mythology, and not just European stories and not just children’s tales. I’m talking the real stuff, dark stories full of fantastic places and creatures of nightmare where macabre events are described by a third person narrator with a matter of fact attitude. That’s my happy place. Not Christmas memories. Not my first puppy. It’s lying on my grandparent’s porch swing reading stories that were totally inappropriate for children.
So there’s that.
And I really wanted to root my character in a literary tradition. Actually, that’s not true. I wanted to root my character in all literary traditions relating to folk tales and fables and myths. I start out with vampires and werewolves, but I start introducing new/old mythological creatures into the mix pretty quickly. Really, if I have any serious literary ambitions for my John Charming tales at all, it’s that I would like to make the urban fantasy genre as a whole a little more aware of how rich and varied the story telling traditions it’s been strip mining for vampire and werewolf stories are. And I’m not saying that no one else is doing this. My favorite urban fantasy authors do this. It’s largely why they’re my favorites.
Read the rest of this entry »
- - September 10th, 2013
Last October we published what has since become Iain M. Banks‘s final Culture novel, The Hydrogen Sonata. We asked Iain’s readers at that time how they would describe his work, and the image below is a reflection of the many, many responses we received.
Today we are thrilled to publish The Hydrogen Sonata in paperback, bringing the Sunday Times bestseller and the brilliance of Iain Banks’s imagination to an even wider audience.
- September 9th, 2013
Another summer has come and gone, and here at Orbit, we’re already hard at work on next year’s exciting line-up! Here are some of the jackets we have ready so far with more to follow over the next few months.
Click on the images below to see a larger version and appreciate each cover in its full glory. Pin, tweet, and comment away with reckless abandon. Let us know which books have already piqued your interest!
Art Credits: Reign of Ash: Illustration by Larry Rostant; Heaven’s Queen: Design by Kirk Benshoff; Dance of Shadows: Photo Illustration by Gene Mollica & Michael Frost, Design by Kirk Benshoff; The Girl With All The Gifts: Design by Duncan Spilling; Cibola Burn: Illustration by Daniel Dociu, Design by Kirk Benshoff; Baptism of Fire: Illustration by BARTŁOMIEJ GAWEŁ, PAWEŁ MIELNICZUK, MARCIN BŁASZCZAK, ARKADIUSZ MATYSZEWSKI,MARIAN CHOMIAK , Design by Lauren Panepinto; Path to Power: Illustration by Raphael Lacoste, Design by Kirk Benshoff; Justice: Design by Wendy Chan; Broken Eye: Photo by Shirley Green, Illustration by Silas Manhood, Design by Lauren Panepinto; The Ripper Affair: Photo by Shirley Green, Illustration by Craig White, Design by Lauren Panepinto; Cursed Moon: Photo by Shirley Green, Illustration by Don Sipley, Design by Lauren Panepinto; The Fifth Season: Design by Lauren Panepinto; The Widow’s House: Design by Kirk Benshoff