Church is Out

Thanks to everyone who trekked out to distant Red Hook last night to hear Jeff Somers reading from The Electric Church. Here’s Jeff, along with publicist Carolyn O’Keefe and editor Devi Pillai.

Jeff Somers at Rocky Sulivan’s

In other Church news, if you’ve been surfing blogs you may have spotted the ads for the book with a mysterious flashing bar code. Adrants posted about the campaign – which includes devious puzzles, Pandora chatbots, and hidden narratives – here.

Join us for Church this evening

If you’re in Brooklyn this evening, come join us down in Red Hook at Rocky Sullivan’s (gmap) to hear Jeff Somers read from The Electric Church. Jeff’s a great reader, Rocky Sullivan’s is a fun bar, and you’ll have significantly more fun than you would at yet another panel on the state of book reviewing.

8:00 PM on Monday, Sept. 24
Rocky Sullivan’s
34 Van Dyke St. (corner of Dwight St.)
Redhook, Brooklyn

New Converts to The Electric Church

The Electrich Church CoverBookgasm digs The Electric Church in a big way. Reviewer Bruce Grossman calls the book “an action movie for the literary set”, but suggests that we got the blurb wrong on the galley.

Don’t believe the back-cover blurb that pegs Jeff Somers’ THE ELECTRIC CHURCH as “BLADE RUNNER meets KILL BILL.” They got one of the movies wrong, in my opinion. It should read “BLADE RUNNER meets THE DIRTY DOZEN, with a dash of Sergio Leone.

(Our crack researchers find that The Dirty Dozen’s Jim Brown appeared in Mars Attacks with Pam Grier, who starred in Jackie Brown which connects in about a dozen ways to Kill Bill, so we’re calling it square.)

But Bruce gets to the heart of what we all find so exciting about The Electric Church — it’s smart, fast-paced, SF that evokes Bladerunner plus your favorite action movie.

Over at Scifichick, Angela calls the book “ a dark, intense and suspenseful novel that had me on the edge of my seat.”

Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist, chatted with Jeff about the book and the publishing process.

And if you haven’t visited yet, now’s a good time. Enterprising readers around the web have already started unraveling the mysteries of the site, so if you get stuck, some clever googling should yield some hints.

Electric Church Sign

Robert Jordan

It is a great sadness to report the news that Robert Jordan, author of the Wheel of Time series, passed away yesterday, 16 September. He will be greatly missed by his family, friends, and everyone who knew him personally and through his books. The news was first posted on his blog at

Do not joke with Brian Ruckley about haggis.

Over at Nethspace, Brian Ruckley responds gamely and hilariously to the “Haggis Question.”

“You do know every year in Scotland several tourists who are flippant about haggis get hunted down and slaughtered like curs by howling, kilt-clad, claymore-wielding mobs, don’t you? It’s virtually a national sport.”

Read the whole interview here.

Though the world of Winterbirth was partly inspired by Brian’s native Scottish Highlands, it is (so far, at least) haggis-free.

Over at Fantasy Book Critic US readers can enter for a chance to win a copy of Winterbirth, along with a set of Orbit US launch month titles.

Mike Carey on Camera

Mike Carey, the author of the Felix Castor novels, recently came in to the Orbit offices, and we thought we’d take the opportunity to sit him down in front of a camera and ask him to talk about his new book, Dead Men’s Boots (which is attracting some really good early reviews — as you can see here).

Of course, having Mike talk about the third book was too good a chance to pass up, so we also recorded him talking about the two previous books in the series, The Devil You Know and Vicious Circle.

You can see the resulting videos by following the link below, and also on our YouTube page.


Link Catch-Up

Winterbirth by Brian RuckleyThings are fairly hectic at Orbit UK — we’re really looking forward to fantasy legend Terry Brooks touring the UK next week, so there’s a certain amount of dotting Is and crossing Ts going on — and it’s all too easy to miss things taking place around the blogosphere. So here’s a catch-up on what’s being happening with our books and authors:

Ian Irvine has written an essay on the books that are important to him for the distinguished academic Norman Geras’ blog.

Sean Williams is answering questions from readers on the Australian SpecFic in Focus forum — you’ve got until 15 September if you want to ask him something.

As a marketing hack, I was fascinated by this interesting analysis of how a reader decides what to buy in a bookshop, using Brian Ruckley’s Winterbirth as a case study, written by a genuine marketing expert, Roy Bayfield of Edge Hill University.

Jeff Somers’ The Electric Church is out later this month. It’s already picked up some great reviews. The Guardian called it “an exhilarating example of powerful and entertaining storytelling.” Meanwhile, blogger Graeme Flory rated it eight out of ten and wrote of it: “I read a couple of pages; then I read some more, the next thing I knew, it was Sunday night and I’d finished it. Great stuff, every single page tells you in no uncertain terms why this book has been chosen as part of Orbit’s opening salvo on the US market . . . an entertainingly bullet spattered read that hints at great things from Somers in the future.”

Graeme has also reviewed Mike Carey’s new book Dead Men’s Boots, which rates a mighty nine and a half out of ten, and the comment, “If you’ve already read the first two books then I guarantee you’re going to absolutely love this one. If you haven’t then I suggest you pick up The Devil You Know [Mike’s debut for Orbit] and get reading. You won’t regret it.” There’s also an interview with Mike on Graeme’s blog.

The final word on Dead Men’s Boots goes to the estimable John Berlyne, who says in his SFRevu review: “What Carey develops . . . is yet another extraordinarily gripping supernatural mystery . . . These Castor books are as fiendishly addictive as nicotine and are made all the more satisfying by Castor’s deadpan, ironic fatalism . . . The net result is another superb, highly involving novel from Mike Carey.” You can read the rest of the review here.

And they’re off!

Orbit’s first two releases in the US, Lilith Saintcrow’s The Devil’s Right Hand and Karen Miller’s The Innocent Mage, have charged up the fantasy mass-market bestseller lists to #3 and #4 respectively. A great start — and great excitement at Orbit HQ!

Cliffhanging just posted a fantastic review of Karen Miller’s The Innocent Mage.

It’s a rare book indeed that after 640 pages, it ends on a cliffhanger, and you sit back and go, “Damn, I wish I had the second book in the series to start.” But that’s exactly what I thought after plowing through Karen Miller’s marvelous The Innocent Mage… read more >>

To all you readers dangling from the edge of that cliff, we cry from below: hold on! The second book in the series, The Awakened Mage, will be in stores this October. If you haven’t read the book yet, you can find chapter one right here.