Archive for June, 2012

More from the Collectors

June 22, 2012 - 8:06 pm No Comments

Angry Robot, the award-winning publisher of cutting-edge SF, F and WTF?! fiction, is delighted to announce a new one-book World English Rights deal with explosive writing talent Chris F. Holm.
Following the critical and sales success of Chris’s debut novel Dead Harvest, and with the noise already building for The Wrong Goodbye’s upcoming release in October this year, we’ve snapped up Chris’s third book in the Collector series. Called The Big Reap, it threatens to reveal a whole lot more of the machinations of some of Hell’s most powerful characters, as soul collector Sam Thornton gets himself in a whole universe of trouble.
About Chris F. Holm

Chris F. Holm was born in Syracuse, New York, the grandson of a cop with a penchant for crime fiction. He wrote his first story at the age of six. It got him sent to the principal’s office.
Since then, his work has fared better, appearing in such publications as Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Needle Magazine, Beat to a Pulp, and Thuglit.
He’s been a Derringer Award finalist and a Spinetingler Award winner, and he’s also written a novel or two. He lives on the coast of Maine with his lovely wife and a noisy, noisy cat.
You can find Chris online at www.chrisfholm.com or on Twitter @chrisfholm.

About the Collector series
The Collector series is wonderfully fast-paced urban fantasy noir. Dead Harvest introduces us to Sam Thornton, deceased; a Soul Collector on Hell’s eternal payroll, but still a man with a conscience and a strong desire to do the right thing. So when he’s sent to collect a soul he firmly believes is innocent, Sam can’t go through with it and collection turns to rescue. He’s going to have to find a way to save the girl and somehow avoid the unholy wrath of his employers if he’s going to work out just what the hell is really going on.
In The Wrong Goodbye, Sam becomes the victim of a double-cross when a fellow collector tries to hit him with the old switcheroo. Sam will need to hunt down the rogue collector and get back what’s rightfully his to collect, all before the Lords of Hell hear about the mix-up and Sam is made to account for the error and pay the ultimate price for his failure to deliver.

Quotable Quotes
Angry Robot Publisher Marc Gascoigne says: “Sam Thornton is a wonderful character and his adventures damnably great fun, so we are delighted to welcome him back for more. The talented Chris Holm makes it all seem so easy.”
Chris F. Holm says: “Look, there ain’t much hardboiled about the word ‘delighted’. Nor ‘chuffed’. ‘Thrilled’ is better, I suppose; puts one in mind of white-knuckled reading. I mean, no one stops in an airport bookstore to pick up a delighter for their trip. Wait, what were we talking about again?
“Oh, right! I am thrilled, and delighted, and possibly even chuffed (being American, it’s hard to tell) to be continuing my Collector series with Angry Robot. The Big Reap is going to be both epic and unexpected, and if I do say so myself, I’m pretty sure it’s gonna rock. But more importantly, it’ll provide Angry Robot – who are, monomaniacal obsession with world domination aside, the finest folks a writer could hope to work with – an excuse to create another kickass vintage pulp cover. That’s right, I admit it: I’m in it for the killer covers. If I have to keep writing crazy-ass demonic adventure-noir to keep ’em coming, then so be it.”

Timeless

June 18, 2012 - 5:49 pm No Comments

Author: Gail Carriger
Publisher: Orbit
Page count: 328pp
Release date: 1st March 2012
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

Following on between one and two years after the fourth instalment in the Parasol Protectorate, Timeless sees toddler Prudence, daughter of Connall and Alexia Maccon dashing about and causing all manner of mayhem through her preternatural state. After the agreement come to at the conclusion of the previous novel, the Maccons reside in Lord Akledama’s third closet using a bridge between their own home and his to sneak in, so as to keep up appearances and appease the vampire community. For Connal is a werewolf, his wife is a metanatural who ‘sucks’ the powers from supernaturals and Akledama is a foppish vampire running a house full of ‘drones’.
This happy household receives a visit from Sidheag Maccon, Alpha werewolf who is missing her werewolf Beta, last seen in Egypt, and is asking for Lord Maccon’s help. At the same time, Vampire Queen Matakara has requested that the Maccons deliver young Prudence, the abomination, to Egypt, so the vampire queen can meet her.

As with all of this series, it isn’t the plot that matters. These novels are more comedy of manners, meets paranormal romance without the sex, with a dash of Steampunk, than anything, which make them jolly good fun, even laugh out loud at times. And with the antics the bluestocking Lady Maccon gets up to this time, there is plenty to keep the reader amused.

Definitely worth a look.

Champion of Mars

June 18, 2012 - 5:29 pm No Comments

Author: Guy Haley
Publisher: Solaris Books
Page count/Size: 416pp
Release date: 10th May 2012
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

In the far future, Mars is dying a second time. The Final War of men and spirits is beginning. In a last bid for peace, disgraced champion Yoechakenon Val Mora and his spirit lover Kaibeli are set free from the Arena to find the long-missing Librarian of Mars, the only hope to save mankind.

In the near future, Dr Holland, a scientist running from a painful past, joins the Mars colonisation effort, cataloguing the remnants of Mars biosphere before it is swept away by the terraforming programme. When an artefact is discovered deep in the caverns of the red planet, the company Holland works for interferes, leading to tragedy. The consequences ripple throughout time, affecting Holland’s present, the distant days of Yoechakanon, and the eras that bridge the aeons between.

This novel spans many generations, and as such, is a little confusing at first as the reader finds their bearings, however, as the novel progresses, you understand how the various time spans and characters are linked. Haley has imagined a gritty, realistic Mars in its early terraforming stages. In fact, his depiction of Mars and the language he uses to describe the planet is eerily poetic.

This is not an easy book to read, but it is a satisfying book. From Yoechakanon’s mission to save the planet, to Holland’s development as he learns to overcome his android phobia and the event that almost destroyed him, there is plenty here to get your teeth into.

Boneshaker

June 16, 2012 - 8:21 pm No Comments

Author: Cherie Priest
Publisher: Tor
Page count/Size: 416pp
Release date: 2009
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin
Brimming with historical integrity (though Priest does admit to playing around with dates), Boneshaker is a Steampunk novel set in Seattle following a gold rush in the Klondikes.

Inventor Leviticus Blue is commissioned to create a new invention, the Boneshaker, a massive drill to help get to the gold buried deep within the ice. On its first use it all goes horribly wrong as the drill breaks through the ground releasing a gas, the Blight, which permeates Seattle turning its citizens into the living dead. The city of Seattle is swiftly walled up along with its dead.

Fifteen years later, Blue’s widow Briar Wilkes lives in poverty with her son Zeke on the Outskirts. Taking it upon himself to find out more about his father, Zeke runs away into the walled up city and Briar soon follows him to get him home safe.

The Blight district is filled with a myriad of interesting characters including giant Swakhammer, one armed Lucy O’gunning and the strange and powerful Dr Minneracht, who some believe to be Levi Blue. The walled city is also filled with a number of rotters (zombies).

Priest is an engaging and talented writer. Her characters are fully fledged, Briar is a strong and forceful woman and the action is plentiful. Like most modern Steampunk, this is a historical action adventure that keeps the pages turning. Well worth a look.

Soul Survivors Award

June 16, 2012 - 7:40 pm No Comments

Welcome Moody’s Survivors to the first Soul Survivors Award. Attached is a nomination form, with lots of categories of work completed by members of Moody’s Survivors, the online fan group inspired by David Moody. Complete each section by nomination a member of Moody’s Survivors to be chosen for an award. The majority choice will win the award.

These awards are sponsored by KnightWatch Press and www.terror-tree.co.uk.

Once this form is complete, please email to theresa.derwin@yahoo.co.uk. If you do so, you will be automatically entered into a competition to win a signed copy of Doll Parts by Wayne Simmons. And please remember, this is meant to be fun!

Award winners will receive a certificate and a free book as their prize.

All nominations must have been published between May 2011 and April 2012.

The closing date is 15th July 2012.

Soul Survivors Awards Nomination Sheet (1)