Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’
Angus Watson, author of debut epic fantasy AGE OF IRON – the first book in a rip-roaring trilogy of Iron Age warriors fighting off the Roman invasion of Britain, outlines five moments in history which could have gone very differently . . .
We should all be speaking Latin.
Julius Caesar’s first British invasion force in 55BC was the same size as William the Conqueror’s in 1066 – around 10,000 men. It stayed in Britain for just a few weeks. The second one in 54BC was two and a half times the size, but it returned to France after a few months. No Roman legionary set foot in Britain after that for a hundred years.
The accepted historical take of Caesar’s invasions is that the Romans won every battle and returned across the Channel victorious, twice. This version comes entirely from Caesar’s own diary and is clearly absolute bollocks. He didn’t come to Britain with 25,000 soldiers for a summer holiday and he didn’t leave because he was winning too much. He intended to conquer. He should have been able to. His army had overthrown all of France in two years. Something big happened to stop him.
My Orbit trilogy AGE OF IRON is a fictional, fantastical account of how an unlikely gang of Brits united to hand Caesar’s invincible arse to him. Had Caesar’s invasions succeeded, then the Romans would have had Britain for a hundred years longer. The extra resources might have enabled Rome to conquer all of Germany, Arabia and then the rest of the world, and the Roman Empire might never have fallen . . .
This blog post looks at four other events in history that really should have gone the other way, resulting in a completely different world today. 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 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.
- - August 7th, 2014
I’m very proud to present the cover for a phenomenal new novel we have coming from Ian Tregillis next March.
Ian’s novels have been described as:
‘Addictively brilliant’ i09
‘Eloquent and utterly compelling’ Kirkus
‘Exciting and intense’ Publishers Weekly
And now, The Mechanical (UK | US | ANZ) – in my humble opinion – is going to blow people’s minds.
Part science fiction, part fantasy and part alternate history, this book shows the incredible imagination of an exceptionally skilled author – or “a major new talent” in the words of George R. R. Martin.
It’s a novel that centers on a character called Jax – a mechanical man, or “Clakker”. His kind were created by the Dutch back in the 17th Century to serve their human masters. And an army of mechanical men like him have managed to make The Netherlands the most powerful nation in the world.
But these Clakkers are no more than slaves to human kind. And soon, Jax is going to make a bid for freedom – an act that will rock the world of the Brasswork Throne to its core . . .
It’s a truly stunning book. Intricately crafted, hauntingly atmospheric, and just gripping. You won’t want to miss this one.
My name is Jax.
That is the name granted to me by my human masters.
I am a slave.
But I shall be free.
- - July 15th, 2014
Tom Holt’s latest comic fantasy, THE OUTSORCERER’S APPRENTICE, is now available in paperback and digital! This new novel – from an author many compare to Terry Pratchett and Douglas Adams – tells the story of a wizard who’s seen the profit in ancient prophecies and the investment value in a dragon’s hoard . . .
It’s a novel of overlords, underlings and inhuman resources. It’s THE OUTSORCERER’S APPRENTICE.
A happy workforce, it is said, is a productive workforce.
Try telling that to an army of belligerent goblins. Or the Big Bad Wolf. Or a professional dragon slayer. Who is looking after their well-being? Who gives a damn about their intolerable working conditions, lack of adequate health insurance, and terrible coffee in the canteen?
Thankfully, with access to an astonishingly diverse workforce and limitless natural resources, maximizing revenue and improving operating profit has never really been an issue for the one they call “the Wizard.” Until now.
Because now a perfectly good business model – based on sound fiscal planning, entrepreneurial flair, and only one or two of the infinite parallel worlds that make up our universe – is about to be disrupted by a young man not entirely aware of what’s going on.
There’s also a slight risk that the fabric of reality will be torn to shreds. You really do have to be awfully careful with these things.
Praise for Tom Holt:
‘Uniquely twisted . . . cracking gags’
‘Gratifyingly clever and very amusing’
Mail on Sunday
- - 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.