The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn April 22, 2015 The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn Usman Malik He will inherit the Unseen. The Ways of Walls and Words April 15, 2015 The Ways of Walls and Words Sabrina Vourvoulias Can the spirit truly be imprisoned? Ballroom Blitz April 1, 2015 Ballroom Blitz Veronica Schanoes Can't stop drinking, can't stop dancing, can't stop smoking, can't even die. Dog March 25, 2015 Dog Bruce McAllister "Watch the dogs when you're down there, David."
From The Blog
April 22, 2015
Daredevil, Catholicism, and the Marvel Moral Universe
Leah Schnelbach
April 22, 2015
The Old Guy Action Comeback: I’m Getting Too Old for This Sh*t
Ryan Britt
April 20, 2015
The Net is the Meat: Bruce Holsinger’s Middle Ages
David Perry
April 17, 2015
Spring 2015 Anime Preview: The Hellish Life of a Pizza Delivery Boy
Kelly Quinn
April 16, 2015
The Disney Read-Watch: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
Mari Ness
Showing posts tagged: fantasy click to see more stuff tagged with fantasy
Fri
Apr 24 2015 12:00pm

Malazan Reread of the Fallen: Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter Seventeen

Ian C Esslemont Orb Sceptre Throne Malazan rereadWelcome back to the Malazan Reread of the Fallen! Every post will start off with a summary of events, followed by reaction and commentary by your hosts Bill and Amanda (with Amanda, new to the series, going first), and finally comments from Tor.com readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter seventeen of Ian Cameron Esslemont’s Orb Sceptre Throne.

A fair warning before we get started: We’ll be discussing both novel and whole-series themes, narrative arcs that run across the entire series, and foreshadowing. Note: The summary of events will be free of major spoilers and we’re going to try keeping the reader comments the same. A spoiler thread has been set up for outright Malazan spoiler discussion.

[Read More]

Fri
Apr 24 2015 9:00am

Breakout Female Voices of the British Fantasy Scene

British female fantasy authors

In a recent interview, I was asked about fantasy writing in Britain today and specifically whether I thought there was a female fantasy scene. If there is, who are the authors, what are they writing and how are their works contributing to fantasy as a genre? To answer the first question, you don’t have to go far afield. The future of British fantasy looks bright thanks to a host of new authors, each of whom is bringing a fresh perspective to some well-mined tropes—tropes we all know and love. In January, I embarked on a quest to read as many of their books as I could. I wanted to get a sense of the themes that women deem important in fantasy fiction and how their exploration of those themes enriches the genre as a whole.

What follows is not a ‘best of’ list. It’s an honest look at the books that just a few women are writing today in Britain. Some names you’ll know, others perhaps you won’t, but I hope one or two will strike a chord and convince you to give their books a try.

[Read More]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 12:00pm

Malazan Reread of the Fallen: Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter Sixteen

Ian C Esslemont Orb Sceptre Throne Malazan rereadWelcome back to the Malazan Reread of the Fallen! Every post will start off with a summary of events, followed by reaction and commentary by your hosts Bill and Amanda (with Amanda, new to the series, going first), and finally comments from Tor.com readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter sixteen of Ian Cameron Esslemont’s Orb Sceptre Throne.

A fair warning before we get started: We’ll be discussing both novel and whole-series themes, narrative arcs that run across the entire series, and foreshadowing. Note: The summary of events will be free of major spoilers and we’re going to try keeping the reader comments the same. A spoiler thread has been set up for outright Malazan spoiler discussion.

[Read More]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 9:00am
Original Story

The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn

“The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn” by Usman T. Malik is a fantasy novella about a disenchanted young Pakistani professor who grew up and lives in the United States, but is haunted by the magical, mystical tales his grandfather told him of a princess and a Jinn who lived in Lahore when the grandfather was a boy.

This novella was acquired and edited for Tor.com by consulting editor Ellen Datlow.

[Read “The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn” by Usman T. Malik]

Mon
Apr 20 2015 2:30pm

Tom Fletcher Does the Devil’s Work

Thin Places Tom Fletcher

Last year, one of the most promising young horror authors of the past decade turned his stark talents to fantasy, conjuring up “a devastated landscape equal parts Ambergris and Fallout 3” to typically excellent effect. I’m talking, of course, about Tom Fletcher, whose Factory trilogy got off to a tantalising start with Gleam—reviewed right here—in 2014.

Fast forward to last week, when the author confirmed that 2015 will indeed see the release of the sequel. It’s called Idle Hands, and it should be published sometime in September or October. The cover’s coming up under the cut—plus, I’ve bagged a blurb! But that’s not all the Tom Fletcher news I have to share with you today. Far from it, in fact. Firstly, there’s Thin Places: a bumper ebook edition of Fletcher’s first three novels, namely The Leaping, The Thing on the Shore, and The Ravenglass Eye.

[Read More]

Mon
Apr 20 2015 11:30am

Half a War and Beyond

Half a War Joe Abercrombie

Is it just me, or has someone been fast-forwarding 2015?

Case in point: it can’t possibly have been more than a week or three since I blogged about Half the World by Joe Abercrombie, and yet the next volume—“the third and (for the time being) final book” of the aforementioned author’s Shattered Sea series—is almost upon us. Half a War is so very nearly here that we’ve got copy and the cover coming up, in addition to an overview of what Abercrombie is turning his attention to now that his work on the trilogy is pretty much finished.

But before we get ahead of ourselves again—as if that’s even feasible this year—behold the blurb. Slight spoilers ahead if you aren’t yet up to speed on the series so far!

[Read More]

Thu
Apr 16 2015 4:30pm
Excerpt

Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism: Book 1, Episode 14

Musharraf Ali Farooqi

Hoshruba Volume 1 Episode 1 Tor.com Musharraf Ali FarooqiWhen Tilism-e Hoshruba was first published in Lucknow, India in 1883, it was already a beloved oral history that had been performed for years in public and private. What Hoshruba’s fans did not know, however, was that professional storyteller Mir Ahmed Ali and his disciples had engineered a massive literary hoax, writing Hoshruba themselves and falsely attributing it to the epic poem cycle The Adventures of Amir Hamza. But less important than Hoshruba’s provenance was its impact: The story of the tilism (an inanimate object transformed into its own world) of Hoshruba, defended by Emperor Afrasiyab against rival tilism as well as the trickster Amar Ayyar, has become one of the foremost fantasy tales in Urdu. For a more in-depth look at the epic’s sorcerers, formidable women, and grimdark (long before the genre existed) battles, read Mahvesh Murad’s Under the Radar review.

Hoshruba (which translates to “ravishing the senses”) is part of the dastan tradition of oral storytelling and is being translated into English for the first time as Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism. In its original form, Hoshruba was published in Urdu, in eight volumes totaling over eight thousand pages. In translating the epic into English, Pakistani-Canadian writer Musharraf Ali Farooqi has split each volume into three, for a total of 24 volumes. Over the next few months, you will be able to read all 50 episodes—the entire first volume of Hoshruba—on Tor.com, with one new episode going up every day. You can also purchase the entire novel through Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

[After a long journey, Amar Ayyar arrived at the shores of the River of Flowing Blood.]

Wed
Apr 15 2015 9:00am
Original Story

The Ways of Walls and Words

Anica and Bienvenida pass prayers and small comforts through the gaps in the prison walls. Incarcerated by the Inquisition for the faith she won't surrender, Anica longs for solace for her family and freedom for herself. And Bienvenida, heir to her mother's Nahua magic, now practiced out of sight of the Spanish religious authorities, will trade a great deal for the fragile chance at friendship and snippets of poetry.

This short story was acquired and edited for Tor.com by acquiring editor Carl Engle-Laird.

[Read “The Ways of Walls and Words” by Sabrina Vourvoulias]

Tue
Apr 14 2015 2:00pm

Historical Worldbuilding: A Conversation with Kameron Hurley and Ken Liu

Ken Liu and Kameron Hurley are two of the most talented and inventive writers working in fantasy today. The Grace of Kings, the first installment in Liu’s new epic fantasy series, arrived this month from Saga Press, and features shapeshifting gods, bamboo-and-silk airships, and a complex political drama that pits two best friends against each other in their quest for a more just world. Hurley will follow up her acclaimed novel The Mirror Empire with the next installment in the Worldbreaker Saga, The Empire Ascendant, later this year, and her standalone space opera, The Stars are Legion, is forthcoming from Saga in 2016.

Hurley and Liu recently came together to answer questions about the role of research in writing fantasy, how they each approach building plausible, fully realized worlds, and the authors they read when they’re not busy plotting their own fantastic creations.

[Read More]

Tue
Apr 14 2015 1:00pm

The Wheel of Time Reread Redux: The Eye of the World, Part 26

Live, from my laptop, it’s the Wheel of Time Reread Redux! APPLAUSE KTHXBI. Today’s Redux post will cover Chapters 48 and 49 of The Eye of the World, originally reread in this post.

All original posts are listed in The Wheel of Time Reread Index here, and all Redux posts will also be archived there as well. (The Wheel of Time Master Index, as always, is here, which has links to news, reviews, interviews, and all manner of information about the Wheel of Time in general on Tor.com.)

The Wheel of Time Reread is also available as an e-book series! Yay!

All Reread Redux posts will contain spoilers for the entire Wheel of Time series, so if you haven’t read, read at your own risk. And now, the post!

[“Men are from Earth, and women are from Earth. Deal with it.” –George Carlin]

Mon
Apr 13 2015 4:00pm

Ken Liu Talks Silkpunk, Old Poems, and Contemporary Chinese SFF in His Reddit AMA

The Grace of Kings book cover Ken LiuIn his first novel The Grace of Kings, Ken Liu “remembers the future” by using nostalgia to reveal modernity; and in doing so, changes the way that epic fantasy stories are structured. Liu addressed questions about fantasy clichés and contemporary Chinese sci-fi and fantasy in his recent Reddit AMA, sharing both his influences and hinting at arcs he’s set up in this book and its sequels to come.

Liu also talked about translating Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem, including the surprising ease of translating science from Chinese to English, and why info dumps are the best part of hard sci-fi.

Check out the highlights from his AMA below!

[Read more]

Mon
Apr 13 2015 1:30pm

Afternoon Roundup: The Avengers Take a Knee for Iron Man

MTV Movie Awards Robert Downey Jr Generation Award

One of the highlights of last night’s MTV Movie Awards was seeing Robert Downey Jr. honored with the Generation Award. Even better was when his Avengers: Age of Ultron castmates joined him onstage and then took a knee to their boss (or, if not boss, the guy who pays for everything, designs everything, makes everyone look cooler). And then RDJ tweeted a sweet thank-you and it was all just awww.

Afternoon Roundup ponders how to make Dark Empire canon again, the resemblance between Maisie Williams and Jenna Coleman, and our favorite scary movie.

[Read more]

Mon
Apr 13 2015 12:45pm

Announcing the 2014 Aurealis Awards Winners!

2014 Aurealis Awards winnersThe winners of Australia’s 2014 Aurealis Awards—which recognize the achievements of Australian science fiction, fantasy, horror, young adult, and children’s fiction writers—were announced on April 11 at the University House, Canberra. Also announced was the 2014 recipient of The Convenors’ Award for Excellence, which recognizes a particular achievement in speculative fiction or related areas that is not otherwise eligible for an Aurealis Award.

The full list of winners is below. Congratulations to all the nominees and winners!

[Read more]

Fri
Apr 10 2015 12:00pm

Malazan Reread of the Fallen: Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter Fifteen

Ian C Esslemont Orb Sceptre Throne Malazan rereadWelcome back to the Malazan Reread of the Fallen! Every post will start off with a summary of events, followed by reaction and commentary by your hosts Bill and Amanda (with Amanda, new to the series, going first), and finally comments from Tor.com readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter fifteen of Ian Cameron Esslemont’s Orb Sceptre Throne.

A fair warning before we get started: We’ll be discussing both novel and whole-series themes, narrative arcs that run across the entire series, and foreshadowing. Note: The summary of events will be free of major spoilers and we’re going to try keeping the reader comments the same. A spoiler thread has been set up for outright Malazan spoiler discussion.

[Read More]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 1:00pm

A Read of Ice and Fire: A Dance with Dragons, Part 17

A Dance with DragonsWelcome back to A Read of Ice and Fire! Please join me as I read and react, for the very first time, to George R.R. Martin’s epic fantasy series A Song of Ice and Fire.

Today’s entry is Part 17 of A Dance With Dragons, in which we cover Chapter 28 (“Jon”) and Chapter 29 (“Davos”).

Previous entries are located in the Index. The only spoilers in the post itself will be for the actual chapters covered and for the chapters previous to them. As for the comments, please note that the Powers That Be have provided you a lovely spoiler thread here on Tor.com. Any spoileriffic discussion should go there, where I won’t see it. Non-spoiler comments go below, in the comments to the post itself.

And now, the post!

[“There are wild elephants in the country, and numerous unicorns, which are very nearly as big. They have hair like that of a buffalo, feet like those of an elephant, and a horn in the middle of the forehead, which is black and very thick… The head resembles that of a wild boar, and they carry it ever bent towards the ground. They delight much to abide in mire and mud. ’Tis a passing ugly beast to look upon, and is not in the least like that which our stories tell of as being caught in the lap of a virgin; in fact, ’tis altogether different from what we fancied.” –Marco Polo being hilariously disappointed by the lack of glitter or virgins around “real” unicorns]

Thu
Apr 9 2015 8:00am
Excerpt

Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism: Book 1, Episode 1

Musharraf Ali Farooqi

Hoshruba Volume 1 Episode 1 Tor.com Musharraf Ali FarooqiWhen Tilism-e Hoshruba was first published in Lucknow, India in 1883, it was already a beloved oral history that had been performed for years in public and private. What Hoshruba’s fans did not know, however, was that professional storyteller Mir Ahmed Ali and his disciples had engineered a massive literary hoax, writing Hoshruba themselves and falsely attributing it to the epic poem cycle The Adventures of Amir Hamza. But less important than Hoshruba’s provenance was its impact: The story of the tilism (an inanimate object transformed into its own world) of Hoshruba, defended by Emperor Afrasiyab against rival tilism as well as the trickster Amar Ayyar, has become one of the foremost fantasy tales in Urdu. For a more in-depth look at the epic’s sorcerers, formidable women, and grimdark (long before the genre existed) battles, read Mahvesh Murad’s Under the Radar review.

Hoshruba (which translates to “ravishing the senses”) is part of the dastan tradition of oral storytelling and is being translated into English for the first time as Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism. In its original form, Hoshruba was published in Urdu, in eight volumes totaling over eight thousand pages. In translating the epic into English, Pakistani-Canadian writer Musharraf Ali Farooqi has split each volume into three, for a total of 24 volumes. Over the next few months, you will be able to read all 50 episodes—the entire first volume of Hoshruba—on Tor.com, with one new episode going up every day. You can also purchase the entire novel through Barnes & Noble or Amazon.

[Read “The Beginning of the History: Of Amir Hamza the Lord of the Auspicious Planetary Conjunction and the False God Laqa”]

Wed
Apr 8 2015 2:00pm

Afternoon Roundup: The Lost Holiday a Decade in the Making

Lost Day 4 18 15 16 23 42

Two once-in-a-lifetime numbered holidays in one year! First Pi Day, and now Lost Day: On April 8, 2015, at 16:23:42, you know what you have to do. Well, actually, it’s not at all clear if that specific time of day will inspire a fan celebration, a message from the show’s creators, or a flash-sideways. You should probably just keep punching in those numbers over and over—you know, to be safe.

Afternoon Roundup assesses your TV-watching personality, gets ready for the dodo bird resurgence, and enjoys Nathan Fillion’s seven-layer bean dip.

[Read more]

Wed
Apr 8 2015 12:00pm

Malazan Reread of the Fallen: Orb Sceptre Throne, Chapter Fourteen

Ian C Esslemont Orb Sceptre Throne Malazan rereadWelcome back to the Malazan Reread of the Fallen! Every post will start off with a summary of events, followed by reaction and commentary by your hosts Bill and Amanda (with Amanda, new to the series, going first), and finally comments from Tor.com readers. In this article, we’ll cover chapter fourteen of Ian Cameron Esslemont’s Orb Sceptre Throne.

A fair warning before we get started: We’ll be discussing both novel and whole-series themes, narrative arcs that run across the entire series, and foreshadowing. Note: The summary of events will be free of major spoilers and we’re going to try keeping the reader comments the same. A spoiler thread has been set up for outright Malazan spoiler discussion.

[Read More]

Wed
Apr 8 2015 10:00am

Introducing Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism, a Fantasy Epic Previously Lost to Time

Hoshruba

On the other side of the mountain lies the land of an all-powerful tale—the one you must conquer. It has consumed whole generations of readers before you. And like all great tales, it is still hungry—ravenous, in fact—for more.

The path leading to the heart of this tale is through a dark terrain laid with archaic language and craggy metaphors, strewn with ornate word puzzles that are a challenge to solve. Not many have gone across in the last hundred years. But the tale will not die or be forgotten. It only gets hungrier and hungrier for readers. In the night, when people open up their bedside books, it roars with a terrible challenge, “ARE THERE ANY WHO ARE MY MATCH?”

[Hoshruba: The Land and the Tilism. The greatest epic you’ve never read.]

Tue
Apr 7 2015 1:00pm

The Wheel of Time Reread Redux: The Eye of the World, Part 25

To Reread, or not to Reread, is that the question? Well, then: DUH.

Today’s Redux post will cover Chapters 46 and 47 of The Eye of the World, originally reread in this post.

All original posts are listed in The Wheel of Time Reread Index here, and all Redux posts will also be archived there as well. (The Wheel of Time Master Index, as always, is here, which has links to news, reviews, interviews, and all manner of information about the Wheel of Time in general on Tor.com.)

The Wheel of Time Reread is also available as an e-book series! Yay!

All Reread Redux posts will contain spoilers for the entire Wheel of Time series, so if you haven’t read, read at your own risk.

And now, the post!

[“Show me a hero and I’ll write you a tragedy.”]