Thursday, March 31, 2011

Paul Kearney's Sea Beggars To Be Completed

Did you hear the news? This is a great one for all present and future Kearney fans: After a long struggle, it looks like Solaris has secured the rights in the existing two Sea Beggars novels and the upcoming third and final volume, Storm of the Dead. Finally we'll have the opportunity to read the completed Sea Beggars series. As a fan, I'd like to thank very much to everyone who made this possible. I don't doubt that the Sea Beggars omnibus will be as successful as the Monarchies of God omnibuses.

The only bad news about this is about the publication date: We're going to have to wait until late in 2012. But I'm sure it'll be worth it. I'm really looking forward to reading and reviewing the Sea Beggars Omnibus.

Here's what John Jarrold (the agent) wrote about the deal:

Jonathan Oliver, commissioning editor of Solaris Books, has acquired UK/US rights in the two previously-published SEA BEGGARS novels by Paul Kearney plus a third and final volume, STORM OF THE DEAD. They will be published in a one-volume omnibus, following the success of Kearney’s MONARCHIES OF GOD books in this form with Solaris (who also publish his Macht novels, THE TEN THOUSAND, CORVUS and the forthcoming KINGS OF MORNING).
The book is due for publication late in 2012, and the agent was John Jarrold.
‘Paul and I are both delighted that this series will be completed and published in its entirety by Solaris,’ said John Jarrold. ‘He is a major talent and anyone reading this or his other novels will see that very quickly.’
‘It’s a great pleasure to welcome Paul back to Solaris,’ editor-in-chief, Jonathan Oliver, said. ‘Fans of Paul’s will be delighted that the SEA BEGGARS series is finally seeing completion and new readers will be bowled over by the work of this brilliant and intelligent fantasy writer.’

The Mark of Ran (Book 1)

In a world abandoned by its Creator, an ancient race once existed - one with powers mankind cannot imagine. Some believe they were the last of the angels. Others think they were demons.

Rol Cortishane was raised in a remote fishing village with no idea of his true place in the world. But in his veins runs the blood of this long-forgotten race and he shares their dangerous destiny.

Driven from home, accused of witchcraft and black magic, Rol takes refuge in the brooding tower sanctuary of the enigmatic Michael Psellos. There Rol is trained in the assassin's craft and tutored by the beautiful but troubled Rowen.

It's no accident that Rol and Rowen have been brought together, but the truth about their past is a secret they will have to fight to discover.

Now they've set their sights across the sea in search of the Hidden City and an adventure that will make them legends... if it doesn't kill them first.

You can read an extract from The Mark of Ran on the author's Web site.

This Forsaken Earth (Book 2)

Nothing moved in all that tangled mass of wreckage and shredded cordage and shattered spars. All along the decks, flesh, wood and iron had been beaten into one unholy, pulped mess from which trickled streams of blood that brightened the brown stains venting from the scuppers. The enemy vessel was a dead thing, which even the wind could no longer stir to life.

The Revenants stared around in wonder, as if uncertain as to who could have brought such a thing to pass. A silence fell, broken only by the weary creak and groan of seaborne wood, the death rattle of a tall fighting ship.

There was a moment almost of reverence.

'This," Rol said, 'is victory.'

But no one can outrun their past, as Rol Cortishane discovers when his old acquaintance in murder, Canker, King of Thieves, turns up unannounced to make Rol an offer that cannot be refused. To safeguard the hidden pirate city that has become his home, Rol must leave behind his beloved ship, Revenant, and take to the mountains of Bionar, where his sister, Rowen, is fighting for possession of the mightiest kingdom in all the world.

Amid siege, pitched battle and betrayal, Rol will discover that his world is not the place he thought it was, and he must relearn his assassin's skills in order to survive.

You can read an extract from This Forsaken Earth on the author's Web site.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Two New Neal Asher Artwork Revealed

This week Tor UK revealed new artwork for two Neal Asher books: Line War and Hilldiggers.

Line War by Neal Asher

Paperback: 566 pages
Publisher: Tor (3 April 2009)
ISBN-10: 9780330441544
ISBN-13: 978-0330441544

The Polity is under attack from a ‘melded’ AI entity with control of the lethal Jain technology, yet the attack seems to have no coherence. When one of Erebus’s wormships kills millions on the world of Klurhammon, a high-tech agricultural world of no real tactical significance, agent Ian Cormac is sent to investigate, though he is secretly struggling to control a new ability no human being should possess . . . and beginning to question the motives of his AI masters.

Further attacks and seemingly indiscriminate slaughter ensue, but only serve to bring some of the most dangerous individuals in the Polity into the war. Mr Crane, the indefatigable brass killing machine sets out for vengeance, while Orlandine, a vastly-augmented haiman who herself controls Jain technology, seeks a weapon of appalling power and finds allies from an ancient war.

Meanwhile Mika, scientist and Dragon expert, is again kidnapped by that unfathomable alien entity and dragged into the heart of things: to wake the makers of Jain technology from their five-million-year slumber.

But Erebus’s attacks are not so indiscriminate, after all, and could very well herald the end of the Polity itself . . .

Hilldiggers by Neal Asher

Paperback: 551 pages
Publisher: Tor (4 April 2008)
ISBN-10: 0330441531
ISBN-13: 978-0330441537

During a war between two planets in the same solar system – each occupied by adapted humans – what is thought to be a cosmic superstring is discovered. After being cut, this object collapses into four cylindrical pieces, each about the size of a tube train. Each is densely packed with either alien technology or some kind of life. They are placed for safety in three ozark cylinders of a massively secure space station. There a female research scientist subsequently falls pregnant, and gives birth to quads. Then she commits suicide – but why?

By the end of the war one of the contesting planets has been devastated by the hilldiggers – giant space dreadnoughts employing weapons capable of creating mountain ranges. The quads have meanwhile grown up and are assuming positions of power in the post-war society. One of them will eventually gain control of the awesome hilldiggers . . .

From the Inside Flap

"A terrible war once raged between the two rival planets within a distant solar system. Over the centuries their human inhabitants had 'adapted' themselves to the extremely different conditions of their new homes, far outside Polity influence.

In the midst of this merciless conflict, one side encountered a bizarre object suspected of being a cosmic superstring employed as a new weapon by the rival side. Their attack on it caused the object to collapse into four parts, each found to be packed either with alien technology or some unknown form of life. Pending further study, these were quickly encased inside four separate Ozark cylinders and stored in a massively secure space station in orbit.

Sometime later, while conducting research on this alien entity, which they now call 'the Worm', a female scientist falls pregnant and subsequently gives birth to quads. She then inexplicably commits suicide by walking directly out into space . . .

The war was finally brought to an end by the use of new weapons arising as a result of research on the Worm. These weapons were deployed by giant space dreadnoughts nicknamed 'hilldiggers' - and their destructive power was sufficient to create entire new mountain ranges out of the vanquished planet's ravaged terrain. Twenty years after the dust has settled, those four exceptionally talented orphans have grown up to assume varying degrees of power and influence within a post-war society.

And one of this exceptional breed now seems determined to gain total control over the deadly hilldiggers. But why?"

Thursday, March 3, 2011

12 July 2011: The Publication Date of A Dance With Dragons

I can hear some of you saying "Finally!" with a sigh of relief and at the same time I can hear some others saying "Yeah, right!" crossing their hands over their chests and frowning in a skeptical manner.

Well... Believe it or not, George R.R. Martin's publishers have a publication date for the long awaited book and the fifth of what most would consider one of the best series in modern fantasy, A Dance With Dragons.

You may not believe and think that it is just another publication date following many other disappointments however as the author himself puts it "This date is different. This date is real.": July 12, 2011.

This morning we heard the news from an Entertainment Weekly article and it has become the hottest fantasy topic on twitter and blogosphere. Some have even already pre-ordered their copy on Amazon.

What do you think? Come July, are we finally going to get a book in our hands? Have you ordered your copy already?