Posts Tagged ‘epic fantasy’
My Orbit-published epic fantasy trilogy AGE OF IRON is set in Britain during the . . . you guessed it . . . Iron Age. After looking around for about twenty years, I learnt about Britain in the Iron Age and I’d knew I’d found the perfect place and time to set a novel. Here’s why.
An Almost Blank Canvas
The Iron Age ran from roughly 800BC to 43AD, so was relatively recent. Your great times ninety grandparents might have been running around then. The Age of Iron trilogy is set near the end of the period, between 61BC and 54BC.
This period of history was much busier than most would think. There were roads, towns and massive hillforts all over the country. However, we know almost nothing about it because the ancient Brits didn’t write and in 43AD – a hundred years after my book is set – the Romans invaded successfully, stayed for 400 years and wiped out any oral histories. The pre-Roman population was pretty big, the estimates range from one to three million, so there were loads of people, and they weren’t cavemen who sat around saying ‘ug’. They were men and women like us – full of wit, passion, inquisitiveness, jealousy, anger, love and so on. So, throughout the long Iron Age, there must have been epic love affairs, huge wars, intrigues, trysts, adventures, disasters and more, all of which we know absolutely nothing about, which, for me, screams out an invitation for us to create stories to fill the void.
It was a massive joy to learn as much as I could about the period and then make up a world and people to fill it. Anyone else can walk up a hillfort and do the same (see point five for the best hillfort to do this on). Read the rest of this entry »
- - September 9th, 2014
This week sees the start of a truly epic new fantasy series. Some of you may know Karen Miller already from her bestselling Kingmaker, Kingbreaker series, which begins with THE INNOCENT MAGE, and led to her selling over a million copies to date worldwide. But this novel marks the start of a brand new stage in her writing career. This novel is on a bigger, more epic scale than anything she’s ever written before, and it just blew us away here at Orbit with its brilliance. THE FALCON THRONE (US | UK | AUS) is the tale of an unquenchable thirst for power – of the atrocities people will commit in order to obtain it, and the consequences for those who stand in their path. It’s an epic fantasy that is magnificent in scope, thrilling in its emotional power, and truly something that every fantasy fan should read.
It’s on offer for a very limited time, so now is a good time to check out the start to this series, which is sure to be hugely influential in the fantasy world. Congratulations to Karen on writing such a knock-out novel!
- - September 4th, 2014
THE BLACK PRISM (US | UK | AUS) by Brent Weeks is a New York Times Bestseller*, a Barnes & Noble Bestseller, a USA Today Bestseller, and it was the bestselling fantasy hardcover in the US and UK last week!
Congratulations to Brent from all of us at Orbit—so well deserved!
If you’re not familiar with the Lightbringer series—read a sample of the first three chapters of THE BLACK PRISM (US | UK | AUS) here!
Brent’s still on tour, so catch him while you can! Visit his Facebook page for more information, and if you’ve already finished THE BROKEN EYE, head on over to Goodreads to chat about it with other fans.
*List goes live on Sunday, Sept 7th.
- - September 2nd, 2014
Launching today at Orbit, the first in a series full of battle-hardened warriors and bloodthirsty druids!
AGE OF IRON is the first volume of a trilogy of epic fantasy novels that takes you back to a British Iron Age full of magic, dark humour and good old fashioned action adventure.
LEGENDS AREN’T BORN. THEY’RE FORGED.
Dug Sealskinner is a down-on-his-luck mercenary travelling south to join up with King Zadar’s army. But he keeps rescuing the wrong people. First, Spring, a child he finds scavenging on the battlefield, and then Lowa, one of Zadar’s most fearsome warriors, who’s vowed revenge on the king for her sister’s execution.
Now Dug’s on the wrong side of that thousands-strong army he hoped to join – and worse, Zadar has sacrificial druid magic on his side. All Dug has is his war hammer, one rescued child and one unpredictable, highly-trained warrior with a lust for revenge that’s going to get them all killed . . .
It’s a glorious day to die.
Author Angus Watson is a journalist and fan of Joe Abercrombie and Scott Lynch, who had the idea to write an epic fantasy tale set in this sparsely-recorded part of history while walking Britain’s Iron Age forts for a Telegraph feature:
“As we strode up to the massive walls of Maiden Castle, hewn from the chalk hill over centuries then abandoned 2,000 years ago, I asked my guide, Iron Age historian Peter Woodward, half joking, if the Iron Age was like the Conan the Barbarian books, with muscular men running about and rescuing virgins from snake worshipers.
“The Conan books and films are about as good a representation of the Iron Age as we have,” he said.
That was it. Here was my subject.”
You can read more from Angus on the Orbit blog this month, and he’s also on twitter, but first, let’s hear from AGE OF IRON’s fans:
‘Watson’s tale is gore soaked and profanity laden – full of visceral combat and earthy humor, and laced with subtle magic. The blend of historical accuracy and authorial liberties suggests an old-school sword-and-sorcery epic, though with some modern sensibilities thrown in for good measure!’
‘Would I read the next one? Yes, absolutely. Bring me my hammer, bring my beer, bring it on.’
‘Watson has created a brilliant and confident debut . . . If you like your fantasy packed with hammer-wielding heroes, bloodthirsty druids, strong female leads, action, intrigue, betrayal, and a brilliantly conceived world then AGE OF IRON is for you.’
THE BOOK BEARD
‘Thoroughly entertaining from the get go . . . I really got a kick out of the AGE OF IRON.’
THE ELOQUENT PAGE
The AGE OF IRON begins in all good book stores today. And you won’t have to wait too long for the rest of the trilogy, look out for CLASH OR IRON and REIGN OF IRON next year!
- - August 27th, 2014
We’re proud to share this gorgeous cover from designer Hannah Wood and artist Steve Stone today! THE DAGGER’S PATH is Glenda Larke’s newest epic fantasy, the superb sequel to THE LASCAR’S DAGGER (UK|US|ANZ).
THEY FOLLOW WHERE THE DAGGER LEADS
When sailors came to Ardhi’s island home, they plundered not only its riches, but its magic too. Now Ardhi must retrieve what was stolen, but there are ruthless men after this power, men who will do anything to possess it . . .
Sorcerers, lascars, pirates and thieves collide in this thrilling sequel to Glenda Larke’s epic fantasy adventure, THE LASCAR’S DAGGER.
‘Outstanding all the way to the last word.’ – Elizabeth Moon on The Lascar’s Dagger
‘If you don’t read Glenda Larke you’re missing out on a treat’ – Karen Miller
- - August 26th, 2014
It’s not just another day…It is August 26th and for those of you who are waiting desperately for the next installment of the Lightbringer, today is THE day!
THE BLACK PRISM (US | UK | AUS) is the first book in the Lightbringer series and it’s the best place to start if you’re new to the world. It is, in a word, EPIC. His second novel in the series was the The Blinding Knife, and if I can steal a quote from Staffer’s Book Review: “It isn’t only the best book he’s written; I consider it one of the best epic fantasies I’ve read.” To paraphrase — THE BLINDING KNIFE (US | UK | AUS) is just AWESOME. The first two novels focus on Gavin Guile, who is the Prism — the most powerful man in the known world. He is high priest and emperor — a man whose power, wit and charm are all that holds the various nations at peace. But Prisms live on limited time and Gavin doesn’t know how long he has left to live. When he discovers that he has a son, Kip, he must decide the lengths he will go to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.
So, this now brings us to THE BROKEN EYE (US | UK | AUS). The third novel in the Lightbringer series, and the biggest one yet. So what does THE BROKEN EYE have? Let me see…how about an enormous leviathan in the first chapter —sorry! I meant two leviathans!!!! And that’s only in the first chapter. Did I whet your appetite yet? If not, let me continue: Secrets, betrayals, assassins, ancient gods, warring princes, — and that’s just the tip of the iceberg (literally!). Gavin and Kip are both at sea, with very little hope of escape.
A bit about the novel:
As the old gods awaken and satrapies splinter, the Chromeria races to find the only man who can still end a civil war before it engulfs the known world. But Gavin Guile has been captured by an old enemy and enslaved on a pirate galley. Worse still, Gavin has lost more than his powers as Prism–he can’t use magic at all.
Without the protection of his father, Kip Guile will face a master of shadows as his grandfather moves to choose a new Prism and put himself in power. With Teia and Karris, Kip will have to use all his wits to survive a secret war between noble houses, religious factions, rebels, and an ascendant order of hidden assassins called The Broken Eye.
Enough? Want more? Go buy the book — but only if you’ve read The Black Prism and The Blinding Knife. Start there. THEN read THE BROKEN EYE. It is not just EPIC & AWESOME — it is MIND-BLOWING.
And if I’m not enough — perhaps you’ll believe these three?
“Brent Weeks has a style of immediacy and detail that pulls the reader relentlessly into his story. He doesn’t allow you to look away.”—Robin Hobb
“The Lightbringer series is great fun. Nobody does break-neck pacing and amazingly-executed plot twists like Brent Weeks.”—Brian McClellan
“Weeks creates a rich blend of politics, culture and character in the
Night Angel Trilogy, then throws in magic-using assassins. Brent Weeks is
so good it’s starting to tick me off.”—Peter V. Brett
The Official Lightbringer Pronunciation Guide read by Simon Vance, the narrator for The Blinding Knife and The Broken Eye (available in audio now)
THE BROKEN EYE Book Tour: RSVP on Facebook today!
“I, Night Angel” and “Gunner’s Apprentice” are now available worldwide!
- - August 8th, 2014
Hey Lightbringer fans, we know you’re eagerly waiting for the next Lightbringer book. Good news, over the next couple of weeks we’ll be releasing the first 50 pages from THE BROKEN EYE (US | UK | AUS). Follow Brent Weeks on Wattpad to receive an update when new chapters are available, and get a head start on the next exciting installment of The Lightbringer series.
Residents of the US, UK, and Australia can still pre-order THE BROKEN EYE and claim a free signed bookplate, plus gain access to two exclusive short stories written by Brent Weeks! A couple of reminders:
1.) You must provide proof of purchase. This can be a picture or your receipt or copy of the confirmation email you received if you ordered online from your preferred retailer.
2.) You must fill out this form to qualify. Sending us your information by any other means does not qualify you to receive the bonuses.
3.) If you experienced any technological difficulties during the download of the short stories, please contact us so we can help you out.
4.) Supplies are limited. In fact, supplies are nearly gone. If you haven’t pre-ordered yet but want a bookplate, we suggest you pre-order soon. Once they’re gone, they are gone.
Full details and entry form can be found here.
- - July 14th, 2014
The exciting news broke over the weekend that MTV have ordered 10 episodes of a TV adaptation of Terry Brooks’ Shannara novels. After years of fans worldwide calling for this epic fantasy series to make it to the small screen, it’s fantastic to hear that it’s finally been green-lighted.
The first season will be based on The Elfstones of Shannara (UK | ANZ), which when first released spent 16 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. Directing will be Jonathan Liebesman (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), and the script is written by Smallville creators Al Gough and Miles Millar. Terry Brooks himself will be taking an executive producer role, along with Jon Favreau and Dan Farah.
The casting is yet to begin – the question is: who would you all like to see starring?
To catch up on the latest in the Shannara world, check out Terry Brooks’ recently released The High Druid’s Blade (UK | ANZ) – a standalone novel which is a great entry-point into the Shannara world.
- - July 9th, 2014
This week sees the release of THE HIGH DRUID’S BLADE (UK | ANZ), a brand new stand-alone novel by Terry Brooks, set in the Legendary world of Shannara.
This exciting epic fantasy adventure tells the tale of Paxon Leah, a descendant of the royals and warriors who once waged war with magical weapons. But to Paxon, those days of legend are long gone now, and he leads a quiet life – until extraordinary circumstances will rewrite his destiny . . .
To celebrate the release, we’ve designed the beautiful Shannara family tree below (click to enlarge it!) showing the Ohmsford and Leah family lineage. It really demonstrates the richness of the Shannara world. But the great thing about the new book THE HIGH DRUID’S BLADE is that it’s a stand-alone novel, so a great place to discover this world for the first time. You can read an extract here.
Readers in the UK now have the chance to win a beautiful A2 poster of this family tree.Check out our competition on the Orbit UK Facebook Page.
Click to see the full size
- - June 3rd, 2014
JUSTICE – the shattering finale to Ian Irvine’s fantasy epic, the Tainted Realm trilogy – has been released today in the UK and US. You can read the first chapter of JUSTICE on the Orbit website, or if you’re new to the series, go back and read the first chapter of the first volume, VENGEANCE.
THE FINAL BATTLE – THE ULTIMATE PRICE
The once beautiful land of Hightspall is being carved up by warring armies led by figures from out of legend. One army is headed by the charismatic brute, Axil Grandys, and the other by Lyf, resurrected sorcerer-king and Axil’s ancient nemesis.
Only the escaped slave Tali and her unreliable magic stand in their way – but Tali’s gift grows more painful every time she uses it. As the armies converge on the fateful peak of Touchstone, Tali and her ally Rix must find a way to overcome Lyf and prevent Axil from using the Three Spells that will destroy Hightspall for ever.
‘For sheer excitement, there’s just no one else like Irvine’
‘Great action set pieces . . . This is the sort of book you’d pick up if you were prepared to be late for your next appointment’
BOOKBAG on VENGEANCE
The Tainted Realm (comprising VENGEANCE, REBELLION and JUSTICE) is an epic fantasy trilogy perfect for fans of Ian Irvine’s Three Worlds series, as well as fans of authors such as Terry Brooks, Robin Hobb and Terry Goodkind.
Find out more about Ian at his website, or join the thousands of fans following his Facebook page, here.