Posts Tagged ‘Alyc Helms’

Cover Launch: THE MASK OF MIRRORS by M. A. Carrick

Today, we are so excited to welcome you to Nadežra, known as the City of Dreams, with the cover launch for M. A. Carrick’s spectacular new fantasy, THE MASK OF MIRRORS.

Nadežra is a city of dark intrigue and glimmering magic. A place where szorsas can read your fate in the face of a pattern card, and creatures of shadow and claw can devour your nightmares. In Nadežra, a mask might hide the face of a beautiful con artist, a daring vigilante, a charming criminal…or someone far more sinister. And we think this stunning cover, illustrated by Nekro, designed by Lauren Panepinto, is the perfect embodiment of all the secrets the city contains.

Releasing in January 2021, THE MASK OF MIRRORS is the highly anticipated start of the Rook & Rose trilogy by M. A. Carrick, the pseudonym for the dazzling author duo of Marie Brennan and Alyc Helms. You can read the first excerpt on io9 here, and preorder it now in the US or from your favorite UK retailer.

This is your past, the good and the ill of it, and that which is neither.

Arenza Lenskaya is a liar and a thief, a pattern-reader and a daughter of no clan. Raised in the slums of Nadežra, she fled that world to save her sister.

This is your present, the good and the ill of it, and that which is neither.

Renata Viraudax is a con artist recently arrived in Nadežra. She has one goal: to trick her way into a noble house and secure her fortune.

This is your future, the good and the ill of it, and that which is neither.

As corrupt nightmare magic begins to weave its way through the City of Dreams, the poisonous feuds of its aristocrats and the shadowy dangers of its impoverished underbelly become tangled–with Ren at their heart. And if she cannot sort the truth from the lies, it will mean the destruction of all her worlds.

Acquisition Announcement: The Rook and Rose Series by Marie Brennan and Alyc Helms

We are delighted to announce that Orbit has acquired a gorgeous new fantasy trilogy by M. A. Carrick, aka the brilliant writing duo of Marie Brennan, author of the Memoirs of Lady Trent Series, and Alyc Helms!

The Rook and Rose trilogy is a grand, richly textured, politically-charged story, which takes readers to magical Nadežra, whimsically known as the City of Dreams. Ren is a con artist seeking to pull off the ultimate scheme: tricking her way into one Nadežra’s noble houses to secure her fortune and her sister’s future. But as she’s drawn into the upper crust world of House Traementis, she realizes her masquerade is just one of many surrounding her, whether it’s the real identity of the legendary vigilante known as the Rook or the true motivations of a charming, enigmatic crime lord–and that the dark feuds of the nobility and the shadowed dangers of the city’s impoverished underbelly are far more tangled than she could ever have imagined.

Here are a few words from the authors themselves, and you can follow along their writing journey at or on Twitter at @ma_carrick.

“In our defense, we were left unsupervised.

Two writers, who both also happen to be anthropologists. Who have known each other for nearly twenty years. Who share a love of intrigue, banter, flashy capers, relationships of not just the romantic kind (though that, too), and worldbuilding that goes so deep you should call your local gas company before you start digging.

We’d said for years that it might be fun to write something together. We’d even started poking desultorily at a list of tropes we each like, looking for commonalities. But it didn’t catch fire until the weekend Marie’s sister left town; by the time she came home, we had a whole trilogy planned.

We keep quoting The Princess Bride: fencing, fighting, torture, revenge, giants, monsters, chases, escapes, true love, and miracles. Also con artists, vigilantes, crime lords, corrupt nobility, clothing Alyc wants to sew, a divinatory card deck Marie wants to create, magic of both the rational and intuitive kinds, and the best (and gaudiest) spider since Lucas.

And hope. That in a place poisoned by arrogance and greed, people can learn to trust each other, work together, and make things better.”

We’re thrilled to be publishing this series! The deal for three books was concluded by Orbit US editor Priyanka Krishnan with literary agents Paul Stevens (for Helms) and Eddie Schneider (for Brennan). Orbit UK editor Jenni Hill has secured UK rights.