Posts Tagged ‘fantasy’
- - October 19th, 2015
We interviewed Julia Knight, author of the Duellists trilogy. The first book, SWORDS AND SCOUNDRELS (UK|US|ANZ) is out this month. It’s a fast and furious fantasy adventure about two siblings, Kacha and Vocho, who are known for the finest swordplay in their kingdom – until they are dishonoured and forced to become reluctant highwaymen. The sequels LEGENDS AND LIARS (UK|US|ANZ) and WARLORDS AND WASTRELS (UK|US|ANZ) will follow in November and December 2015.
What was the inspiration behind SWORDS AND SCOUNDRELS?
Lots of things! I was reading a lot about post-Moorish Spain – which was inspiration for the fallen empire in the book – and Renaissance Italy, which inspired all the city states that are at each other’s throats. Then add to this a re-reading of the Musketeers, and my happening across a video for an architect’s design for a clockwork city and….hey presto!
Which was your favourite character to write?
That is a really hard question, as I love them all in different ways. Vocho was a blast to write, because he’s just so vain and unintentionally funny but he does have a heart too (when he remembers). I like Kacha because she takes no crap from anyone, especially Vocho. Petri was supposed to be the bad guy . . . but I found I rather felt for his predicament . . .
Who really is the better duellist – Kacha or Vocho?!
Depends on who you ask . . . As Vocho says, she’s better at technique, but he has an advantage in strength and reach. Both are devious as required. I’d say they both have their strengths but that balances out so they are actually fairly evenly matched.
Where’s your favourite bookshop?
I’m going to cheat and say it’s a toss up between Forbidden Planet in London and my local Waterstones in Horsham, West Sussex. Forbidden Planet because I cannot leave without buying *something* and it is just so very cool. And my local Waterstones because it’s got everything – a café, squishy sofas, staff that really know their books (and are more than happy to chat about them, or help me find something). It also has a decent SFF section which brings me on to the next question…
When you walk into a bookshop which section do you gravitate to first?
I always gravitate to the SFF section first in any bookshop. However I do have a soft spot for other genres – historical (both fiction and non-fiction) and crime in particular, so once I’ve mined the SFF I tend to browse there too. Frankly I’ll read almost anything!
What we can expect from the next Duellists novel LEGENDS AND LIARS?
Dastardly magicians, dashing duellists and warring cities. It gets deeper into the characters, and darker too, though it’s still got plenty of light-hearted moments . . .
- - September 17th, 2015
Today, we’re very excited to unveil the newest novel in the the Seraphim series by USA Today bestselling author, David Dalglish. If you like aerial combat, swords on fire and more than a touch of mayham and war, then this is the series for you.
Art by Tommy Arnold, Design by Kirk Benshoff
Bree and Kael Skyborn have seen their island invaded, their Seraphim disbanded, and their royal family imprisoned.
A rebellion grows from the ashes, demanding Bree to be their Phoenix, their symbol against Center’s tyranny, and for Kael to find the doomsday prophet Johan and sway his cult to their side.
Should they fail, the hope of their rebellion fails with them.
This is the second novel in the trilogy and follows Skyborn, (US | UK | ANZ) which is out this November and it is available for pre-order now. To read more about the cover design process and the art of Tommy Arnold, check out this article.
“David Dalglish’s Skyborn is a compelling story. More than anything it reminds me of the best aspects of the Final Fantasy (ital or no?) games with their flying islands, fast pacing, and tonal mix of sunlight and shadow. Once you pick up Skyborn you won’t want to put it down, as the story carries you along from one high contrast moment to the next. Dalglish has really mastered the art of focusing the reader’s attention. I expect this series to fly off the shelves.”
“A soaring tale that nails the high notes. Skyborn had me gazing heavenward, imagining what could be.”
- - September 11th, 2015
We are excited to release the cover for THE OBELISK GATE, which was launched at The Mary Sue earlier this week. This is the second novel in the Broken Earth series by N. K. Jemisin, and we know that you’ll love it as much as you did the first novel, THE FIFTH SEASON (US | UK | AUS). The Obelisk Gate continues the story of Essun and Alabaster as each continue their search. A post-apocalyptic fantasy at its core, this is a novel of the end of the world, of secrets revealed and of betrayals that still scar the land.
THIS IS THE WAY THE WORLD ENDS… FOR THE LAST TIME.
The season of endings grows darker as civilization fades into the long cold night. Alabaster Tenring — madman, world-crusher, savior — has returned with a mission: to train his successor, and thus seal the fate of the Stillness forever.
It continues with a lost daughter, found by the enemy.
It continues with the obelisks, and an ancient mystery converging on answers at last.
The Stillness is the wall which stands against the flow of tradition, the spark of hope long buried under the thickening ashfall. And it will not be broken.
Check out what reviewers have been saying about The Fifth Season:
“Intricate and extraordinary.”
— New York Times
“[Jemisin has packed] sumptuous detail and dimensionality… into her premise. … Jemisin maintains a gripping voice and an emotional core that not only carries the story through its complicated setting, but sets things up for even more staggering revelations to come.”
— NPR Books
“Elegiac, complex, and intriguing…. Jemisin’s graceful prose and gritty setting provide the perfect backdrop for this fascinating tale of determined characters fighting to save a doomed world.”
— Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“Multi-award winner Jemisin breaks uncharted ground with this long-awaited title…. A must-buy for all speculative fiction collections.”
— Library Journal (starred review)
“Jemisin might just be the best world builder out there right now…. [She] is a master at what she does.”
— RT Book Reviews (Top Pick!)
“[The Fifth Season is] an ambitious book, with a shifting point of view, and a protagonist whose full complexity doesn’t become apparent till toward the end of the novel.”
- - August 24th, 2015
Orbit US and Gollancz are thrilled to announce that they will be publishing a stunning hardback collection of superb short stories featuring best-loved characters from the world of the First Law, by New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling fantasy author Joe Abercrombie. Orbit will publish the collection in the United States and Gollancz in the United Kingdom.
The short stories will be a mix of original and reissued short stories collected together for the first time, including the Locus Award-winning “Tough Times All Over.” The brand-new shorts will feature some of the most popular characters from the First Law world, including Glokta, Jezal, Logen Ninefingers, Bethod, and Monza Murcatto.
Joe Abercrombie said: “I’m very pleased that some widely scattered shorts are going to be brought together in one volume along with some new stories about old friends and enemies, filling in some blanks in the map of the First Law world and offering some different perspectives on key events. I hope readers will have as much fun revisiting some of these much-loved – and much-hated – characters as I have…”
Joe Abercrombie’s novels in the First Law world have sold over half a million copies to date. He is a New York Times and Sunday Times bestselling author. Joe’s short stories are in demand for collections put together by some of the biggest names in the industry, including George R. R. Martin.
Joe Abercrombie is the author of the First Law Trilogy (The Blade Itself, Before They Are Hanged, and Last Argument of Kings). His stand-alone novels (Best Served Cold, The Heroes, and Red Country) are also set in the First Law world.
His novels have been shortlisted for the World Fantasy Award, British Fantasy Award, John W. Campbell Award and the David Gemmell Legend Award. His covers are also award winning, and have won both the David Gemmell Legend Award and the World Fantasy Award for best artwork.
Joe formerly worked as a freelance film editor and is now a full time writer who lives in Bath with his family. Follow @LordGrimdark on Twitter for more information, or visit www.joeabercrombie.com.
Orbit is the science fiction and fantasy imprint of Hachette Book Group.
About Hachette Book Group:
Hachette Book Group is a leading trade publisher based in New York and a division of Hachette Livre, the third-largest trade and educational publisher in the world. HBG publishes under the divisions of Little, Brown and Company, Little Brown Books for Young Readers, Grand Central Publishing, Orbit, Hachette Books, Hachette Nashville, and Hachette Audio.
Sharp Ends: Stories from the World of The First Law, Joe Abercrombie
US: April 12, 2016, hardcover $28.00 / e-book $14.99
UK: April 12, 2016, hardcover £18.99/ e-book £9.99
- - August 18th, 2015
And now it’s here! THE PARADOX, the very, very, very much-awaited sequel to Charlie Fletcher’s THE OVERSIGHT is out this week, and . . .
“I’ll certainly be reading the next one” Cory Doctorow, BoingBoing
the critics who loved THE OVERSIGHT . . .
“The start of something amazing” Mike Carey
will clearly . . .
“The second book can’t come soon enough” Booklist (starred review)
be . . .
“If there is a sequel to this then I shall be first in line to read it” Fantasy Book Review
very . . .
“It’s going to be something special” SF Site
happy . . .
“I’d read a prequel this evening, a sequel as soon as.” Niall Alexander, Tor.com
to . . .
“Promises a trilogy worth sinking your teeth into” SciFiNow
hear . . .
“Go on and relish The Oversight without further prompting – then we can all wait eagerly for more!” Locus
If you missed Charlie at the Nine Worlds convention last week, he’ll be at Edinburgh Book Fair on 21st August and Sledge-Lit in Nottingham in November. If you can’t make it to the UK, look out for his upcoming slot on John Scalzi’s The Big Idea, or find out what he’s up to on twitter at @CharlieFletch_r. THE PARADOX is out this week in ebook and print.
- - August 6th, 2015
We’re thrilled to present THE RISING (UK | US | ANZ), the stunning new novel in the Alchemy Wars series by Ian Tregillis, coming this December.
It is the gripping tale of Jax, a mechanical man or “clakker”, who has thrown off the bonds of slavery. He is no longer bound to the will of the humans that created him. But now he is on the run – because to be free is to be dangerous . . .
THE RISING is the sequel to THE MECHANICAL (UK | US | ANZ), a novel which was exceptionally well received this year.
Read the reviews below to see just why Ian Tregillis is being lauded as one of the most original new voices in speculative fiction.
‘The first thing readers will say after finishing this splendid book is: “Wow.” The second thing will probably be: “When can I read the next one? . . . This is a rousing SF/fantasy adventure, with a brilliantly imagined and beautifully rendered alternate world’ Booklist
‘One of the sharpest, most intelligent, hugely compelling works I’ve read this year’ Forbidden Planet International
‘The Mechanical is as intricate and exquisite as the clockwork wonders it brings to life’ NPR
‘His characters are as convincing as ever, the plotting is beautifully articulated . . . readers with an interest in dark, intelligent fantasy will find much to admire here’ Kirkus
‘The rich characters and gripping story really make this tale soar’ Publishers Weekly
‘A hugely entertaining novel’ SFX
‘Absolutely fascinating, and unapologetically clever’ Sci-Fi and Fantasy Reviews
‘So absorbing that readers will be dying for the next entry in this new series’ Library Journal
‘This book is truly unlike anything I’ve ever read before . . . I can’t wait to see what the next installment in The Alchemy Wars will bring’ Bibliosanctum
Look out for THE RISING in December 2015 and see the full cover below. Read the rest of this entry »
- - July 29th, 2015
We’re delighted to launch the cover for Miles Cameron’s THE DREAD WYRM, the much-anticipated new installment in the Traitor Son Cycle that began with THE RED KNIGHT and THE FELL SWORD, coming out in October this year.
Some are born to power. Some seize it. And some have the wisdom never to wield it.
The Red Knight has stood against soldiers, armies and the might of an empire without flinching. He’s fought on real and magical battlefields alike, and now he’s facing one of the greatest challenges yet. A tournament.
A joyous spring event, the flower of the nobility will ride against each other for royal favor and acclaim. It’s a political contest — one which the Red Knight has the skill to win. But the stakes may be higher than he thinks. The court of Alba has been infiltrated by a dangerous faction of warlike knights, led by the greatest knight in the world: Jean de Vrailly — and the prize he’s fighting for isn’t royal favor, but the throne of Alba itself…
Not caught up? There’s still time to check out the first two books.
Praise for the Traitor Son Cycle:
“I cannot recommend the Traitor Son Cycle enough…amazing.” — SF Signal
“Literate, intelligent and well-thought-out…George R. R. Martin comparisons will no doubt be in abundance.” — SFF World
“Medieval fantasy at its finest.”— Fantasy Faction
“The series promises to be a standout epic fantasy for the ages.” — SF Signal Fantasy Book Critic
- - July 29th, 2015
The Orbit Fantasy Writing Workshop continues this week and runs until 3rd August. It’s led by Karen Miller, the bestselling author of THE FALCON THRONE (US | UK | AUS). We’re very happy to see so many people taking part. To find out how you can get involved, see details here.
In order to provide some helpful advice along the way, Karen posted this piece on Writing Your First Fantasy Novel on Monday.
And since the challenge she has set involves writing a character who is morally conflicted, today she gives some great pointers on Writing the Villain: or learning to love your inner Darth Vader. It should really get you thinking about what brings characters to life.
And in addition to this, Karen is also participating in a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) today, so do feel free to put any questions you have about writing to her.
Please keep letting us know how things are going by leaving comments on this site, or posting on Twitter with the hashtag #OrbitFantasyWorkshop. Best of luck with the writing!
- - July 23rd, 2015
Last month we introduced you to HOPE & RED—an upcoming adventure fantasy series we’re incredibly excited about! We’d like you to meet the author, Jon Skovron, and hear a little more about the novel.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m originally from Ohio, although I’ve since lived in Brooklyn, Seattle, and Pittsburgh. Now I live just outside DC, with my two sons and two cats. Rather than going to a regular college, I studied in the theater conservatory at Carnegie Mellon. But after a brief stint as a professional actor, I decided on the much more practical career of author. I started writing short SF&F stories in 2000, several of which were published in now defunct zines and online venues such as Baen’s Universe, where I had the honor of appearing in the same issue as Gene Wolfe. In 2006, my agent suggested I try my hand at this new craze called Young Adult, and my first YA novel was published in 2009. I’ve had two more YA novels published since, and my fourth comes out this August. HOPE & RED will be my first novel for grown-ups.
What is HOPE & RED about?
HOPE & RED takes place in an archipelago of islands called The Empire of Storms, with warrior monks, pirates, gang lords, science mages called biomancers, and a fair amount of monsters, violence, and mayhem. But as the title implies, this is ultimately a story about Hope and Red. They both lose their parents at a young age. Both are taken in by unconventional mentors who encourage them to transgress society, but in very different ways. Red is taught to become a thief and con artist in the urban slums, where he is fiercely loyal to his adopted neighborhood of Paradise Circle. Hope is secretly trained on a remote island as a warrior in an elite order that has specifically banned women. She seeks vengeance against the biomancer who murdered not only her parents, but her entire village.
When the biomancers team up with the gang lord of Paradise Circle to consolidate power, Hope and Red’s worlds come crashing together, resulting in a quest for justice that leads them all the way to the imperial palace.
Why did you decided to write HOPE & RED as an adult novel, rather than YA?
Don’t get me wrong. I adore writing YA, and will continue to do so. YA and adult Fantasy have a lot of similarities. But they also have some key differences. By nature, YA is all about teens. I wanted to write story that took these two characters from age eight all the way into adulthood. Also, YA is intensely story-focused. I love the lean efficiency of it. But this time I wanted to write a book where the world was rich and immersive, with a long, compelling history. Something you couldn’t see the edges of. I wanted characters that were complex and nuanced and broken. And frankly, I just wanted to write something R Rated, and not have to worry about gatekeepers.
There’s an lot of swashbuckling, sea-faring adventure in this book. Do you have any personal experience with sailing?
Quite a lot, actually. My grandfather was passionate about ships and sailing. When I was a boy, he often took me sailing for days on end. He taught me how to sail, of course, as well as all the parts of the ship, and odd little sailor adages that linger in my mind to this day. He was also a musician, so he’d often bring along his accordion, and we’d sing sea chanties once the sun went down.
HOPE & RED will be published next summer. For more news and updates, follow the author on Twitter.
- - July 17th, 2015
En garde! We have something very exciting in store for fantasy fans this Autumn . . .
Announcing the Duellists trilogy – a brand new adventure fantasy series from the hugely talented British author Julia Knight.
This year we’ll be releasing not just one, but all three books in this fast and furious series – full of ruffians, scoundrels and rogues . . . and more action than you can shake a very pointy stick at!
The three books are as follows:
SWORDS AND SCOUNDRELS (UK | US | ANZ) – October 2015
LEGENDS AND LIARS (UK | US | ANZ) – November 2015
WARLORDS AND WASTRELS (UK | US | ANZ) – December 2015
So what’s the series about? Well, it follows two former champion duellists, a brother and sister named Kacha and Vocho. They’re down on their luck – and have been forced to become reluctant highwaymen. But when they pick the wrong carriage to rob, their simple plan to win back fame and notoriety go south fast . . . and they’ll find themselves mixed up in a plan to reclaim a stolen throne.
The world-building in this series really draws you in and the dynamic between the characters is superb – I can’t wait for you guys to meet Kacha and Vocho. If you’re into the likes of Douglas Hulick, Scott Lynch and Brandon Sanderson then this will be right up your street. And what’s great is, you’ll be able to get your hands on the whole series fast!
Look below for more details and to see the covers in full. You can follow Julia on Twitter as @Knight_Julia and her series is available for pre-order now . . .
Read the rest of this entry »