The Full English: Rotherweird by Andrew Caldecott

@LouW5765 At the moment, Early Riser is pencilled in for early 2018, but it could slip still further, I'm afraid. Last I heard, Fforde was finished a first draft - a finished manuscript might still be months away. After that, he'll be working on The Last Dragonslayer 4. And after that, maybe, just maybe, that Shades of Grey sequel I've been waiting for since finishing the first one.

Announcing the 2017 Arthur C. Clarke Award Shortlist

@martyh: Right you are, but this post is about an award for books published by British publishers. Seems only fair to list them, in this instance, rather than their US counterparts.

Graphic Geometry: The Massacre of Mankind by Stephen Baxter

It's more like 1920 by the time the Martians finally move out of England, Ken, and in any event, the issue is the improbably long period the aliens give the rest of the world to get ready after they've summarily kicked Britain's backside. We're talking years here, for no good reason—other than a contrivance that allows the novel's plot to move forward.

That said, to birgit's point, the Martians absolutely do know their stuff: their reasons for landing outside of London—the reasons Ken lays out in his comment—are sound as the proverbial pound. What bothered me was why, when their dark deeds there were done, they did nothing other than twiddle their thumbs.

New Moon: The Obelisk Gate by N. K. Jemisin

@amalmohtar: Looking forward to reading your review as soon as humanly, Amal, but I'm afraid we may have to agree to disagree on this one. Don't get me wrong, I did like The Obelisk Gate, but The Fifth Season was something very special, and this felt mundane to me where that was magical...

@neongrey: Couldn't have said it better myself. I just hope Jemisin has the goods to conclude this trilogy with the same spark it started with.

J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Book of the Film of the Book

@StrongDreams: But there's sure to be some acknowledgement of North America's diversity in the special features section of the extended edition of the second sequel. Surely!

Return to Sender: Covering Dead Letters

@ad: The government, and thus the public, retained a swathe of shares in the PLC until earlier this year.

Never Mind the Messenger: The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness

@MatthewB: Not at all. That's the term of endearment Mikey and Mel use to refer to Meredith.

Londons Burning: Covering Down Station by Simon Morden

I'm right there with you, Raskos. I thought it was awesome, but the community at large overlooked it. I wish I knew why; I'm sure Simon does too...

The Masquerade: The Traitor Baru Cormorant by Seth Dickinson

@wingracer: It is!

@ostermei: Oh, I played plenty of attention to the game's worldbuilding. There just wasn't a lot of that in the game.

That isn't to say the Grimoire cards ain't great—I've got the Kotaku article about Thorn and The Last Word bookmarked and I'm looking forward to reading it when I have a second—but to the best of my recollection, the Grimoire cards weren't an especially accessible part of the game I played upon its release last year, and what remained was very much lacking flavour.

To be clear, I'm not talking about the IP here. It was Bungie's job to make me care about supplementary stuff like the Grimoire cards Dickinson contributed to, and I'm far from the first person to say they failed. Which is no slight on the author of this effing awesome novel at all.

Occupy Your Time with Tricia Sullivan’s New Novel!

Oops! My bad. It's her first new science fiction novel since Lightborn. I'll update the article ASAP.

Fly Me To The Moon: Armada by Ernest Cline

@Jobi-Wan: I hope you have fun. And ooh! If, after Armada, you find yourself looking for a little more of the everything is not as it seems and aliens are trying to destroy Earth thing, let me recommend the new Cixin Liu, Dark Forest.

Speak His Name: Covering The Shepherd’s Crown

Also, I love your theory, @mlinden. It does sound like the exact sort of thing Terry Pratchett would do, and I kind of hope he has. It'd be bittersweet, but a beautiful way to say goodbye to these books.

Speak His Name: Covering The Shepherd’s Crown

Couldn't resist a bit of a postscript.

So, since I mentioned my scepticism about whether or not The Shepherd's Crown really would be the last Discworld novel, or just the last one to bear Terry Pratchett's great name, I can't not point you all towards Rhianna Pratchett's rebuttal. On Twitter, she's said that though she "will be involved with spin-offs, adaptations and tie-ins [...] that's it"—she doesn't "intend on writing more Discworld novels, or giving anyone else permission to do so. They are sacred to dad."

Transworld, Terry Pratchett's publisher, has even agreed.

And that's that. Happily.

Leviathan Breaks: Nemesis Games by James S. A. Corey

Apologies, Paul, if my review gave too much of the game away. What to talk about and what not to can be a hella hard line to find, and if you think I crossed it, I'm sorry—sincerely—such that I've added a spoiler warning to the offending article.

On the whole, though, I'm with sunspear here. I wouldn't risk reading a review or a recap of something I was already sure I'd read or see. It'd be another matter entirely if I found myself on the fence. My experience tells me that sometimes an awesome, if somewhat spoilery plot synopsis is exactly what such a reader needs to sell them on something they wouldn't give the time of day to otherwise, and I feel strongly that The Expanse is such a series: one with a potentially mainstream reach it hasn't even nearly realised.

Truth’s Solar Burn: Radiant State by Peter Higgins

Alright, Radiant State. It's on. You, me and a cup of tea—this evening.

What’s in a Name? K.J. Parker, Revealed
I really should have realised when I described The Outsorcerer's Apprentice as "wolfishly witty and wonderfully funny" that there was another author out there the description would fit... Mixed feelings about knowing, though. On the one hand, awesome, because no more playing the pronoun game; on the other, I already kinda miss the mystery.
Tom Fletcher Does the Devil’s Work
@TerryWeyna: I do hate to frustrate! So for physical editions, The Book Depository has your back. You'll be paying a bit of a premium, but by the same token, they offer free postage worldwide, so if you're really keen...
The Horror of the Herberts
@SchuylerH: As of an hour ago, it's already out there. I'm at work on a post for the Focus as we speak!
Jerusalem in the Spring
@1: My feeling is that even recently, some of Moore's work has been wonderful, such that I have high hopes for Providence in particular, and I won't be dismissing Jerusalem so quickly. That said, I quite understand where you're coming from, Sunspear. I've always tried to separate the creator from the created, but the man himself has certainly become a tad tiresome.
Introducing Aurora Australis
Awesome, awesome, awesome. One awesome for each the Alexs, even. :) In any case, I know Australia has a lot to offer us speculative fiction fans, but I've never been sure where to look or who to look to for advice about the scene and its secrets. Sounds to me like you'll be a great guide, Alex. Welcome to
Selkie Stories: From Sea Songs to Tragic Romances!
Oh come on. I reviewed The Visitors—what? Three weeks ago? Four? Best selkie story since the Lanagan Stubby also overlooked. Long story short, you've been a very naughty rocket!
Covering Crashing Heaven
@SchuylerH: Not sure about the Bear—let me look into it—but The Thing Itself is expected in December and Amazon already has a bit of a blurb. Apparently it's an answer to the Fermi Paradox with clear echoes of the Carpenter classic, which I'll say sounds straight up my street.
Gene Luen Yang to Write DC Comics’ Superman
Truth be told, I couldn't give a hoot about Supes, but Yang's Avatar: The Last Airbender graphic novels have been fantastic. So long as this doesn't disrupt those, good superheroing to you, sir!
British Fiction Hitlist: Late January New Releases
@lightcap: I don't think so, no. I'm not even sure if Night Shade, since the change in ownership and the resulting renegotiations, still has the rights to release physical editions of Cataveiro and Tamaruq. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news!
David Mitchell Reprises “The Right Sort”
@SchuylerH: Also Slow Bullets by Alastair Reynolds, due out from Tachyon in June. If this is an emerging trend, consider me all sorts of excited for 2015—short novels are perfect little palette cleansers...
Three Moments and Uprooted Cover Art
@SchuylerH: Oh, here's hoping. Expect another Focus when Tor UK comes out with a proper Table of Contents... @Scavenger Monk: What indeed! And lest we forget Get in Trouble by Kelly Link—that's as good as guaranteed to be terrific too.
Philip Pullman Releases New His Dark Materials Story for Christmas
For those asking where to get The Collectors, it may yet be a few hours away, but the release date is certainly today. Meantime, here's a tease.
World Book Night is Back
@Jesy Rae: You can get in touch with me on Twitter through the link in my minibio, or by emailing me at the address you'll find on TSS. Reviewers’ Choice: The Best Books of 2014
I really, really need to read The Goblin Emperor. Also All Those Vanished Engines. Thanks for the recommendations, reviewers. :) @areadingmachine: Just you wait for Golden Son, sir. It's ten times the book Red Rising was. Mark my words: you'll be seeing it in the Reviewers' Choice in 2015, from me at the very least.
Short Fiction Spotlight: The Sleeper and the Spindle
@Kevin J. Feeley: Actually they both did, in different editions in the UK and the US respectively. Maybe don't be quite so quick to call out mistakes that aren't mistakes, mate.
We Are Family: Symbiont by Mira Grant
@AnotherAndrew: I don't know that I had the twist figured out fifty pages into Parasite, but to the best of my recollection, Sal's amnesia in tandem with all that talk of the hot warm dark certainly suggested it before Tiny Ti—I mean Tansy—happened.
Aliette de Bodard Shatters Paris
I can only hope you don't miss out on House of Shattered Wings for long, Puntificator. That said, the situation is reversed with alarming regularity, with ebooks available in the States for years before we can lay our hands on them here, so trust me when I tell you your patience will probably pay off. Indeed, I bet deals are being done as we speak, or else Gollancz would likely have taken on worldwide rights rather than restricting this release to the UK and Commonwealth territories.
British Fiction Hitlist: Late November New Releases
@lerris: James is spot-on. The Hitlist does have a particular interest in British genre authors, but at bottom it's a feature about new books from British publishers, so though Gibson isn't a local, his new novel, released hereabouts this week, is of enough note to British genre fiction fans that it must make the cut.
The BFI Celebrates Sci-Fi
Moments ago, the folks behind the festival finally unveiled the individual events scheduled for Saturday and Sunday. In addition to the bullet points above, they've arranged events with Matt Haig, Larry Rostant, Laline Pail and a bunch of others authors and artists. My body is ready. My mind, moreover.
Born Again: Wakening the Crow by Stephen Gregory
Its substance, in fathomless quiescence, exists eternally. Its absence, equally, exactly.
British Fiction Hitlist: Early November New Releases
What, no love for Carol Anne Duffy? It's all about the poetry, folks! :)
Short Fiction Spotlight: Shearman, Fearman
@SchuylerH: Though Priest was amongst the "authors committed to take part" listed in the initial announcement, there's no story old or new by the man in Fearsome Magics, I'm afraid. Still a very strong anthology, in all, but I confess to feeling a little let down by his absence also.
British Fiction Focus: A New Hope
Take @stevenhalter's comment with a grain of salt, all. My true identity is as yet unconfirmed...
British Fiction Focus: A New Hope
Should be soon, SchuylerH. I'll be working on the first proper post tomorrow. @a-j: I was thinking more along the lines of a True Detective kind of vibe. More nihilistic, you know? With maybe a couple of creepy trees. We'll see! :)
Oh No! A Brief History of the Chung Kuo
@ShuylerH: Nowhere near the end of the entire overarching narrative, alas, but I pushed through to the last of the abandoned recastings, and was left wishing I could take the time back when I heard how the whole hellish endeavour ended. That said, I still wish Wingrove had had the chance to fix whatever mistakes he made. I might've checked in on Chung Kuo again depending on the recast conclusion's reception...
Oh No! A Brief History of the Chung Kuo
@JP Quinlan: What are you talking about? What book wouldn't be better with space spiders? But yeah. Quite the twist of the knife. I think I'm through with this series.
Uncanny Magazine Announces Full Funding
Excellent. But here's hoping the Kickstarter hits $36k so we can count on two more original stories in each issue. For my money, that's a stretch goal worth the workout.
Check Out the New Fantasy Series from Naomi Novik, Author of the Temeraire Series!
So it's a year out. So what? Plenty of time to start getting excited, and it's not like we moan about knowing Batman v. Superman is in development. So is this new book; I hadn't heard about it before now, and I'm glad that I have. Thanks for the heads-up, Stubby.
And Finally, For Now, the Fall of the Novel
@Schuyler H: So I finally found the time to read through the Strange Horizons post on science fiction in Britain. Too much to say about it to contain in a single comment, but thanks a thousand time for pointing the piece out. If I ruled the world, ignorance of the points raised in this article would be illegal. Does anyone have any idea why Subterranean Online is shutting up shop? I was so sad to see that the new edition was its final issue; feels like it's been a bastion of brilliant genre fiction for forever...
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Late July New Releases
@SchuylerH: I certainly mean to pitch a piece just as soon as I can get my hands on a copy of the novel. Now wasn't David Mitchell nominated for a Nebula and the Man Booker for Cloud Atlas?
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Late July New Releases
@SchuylerH: There's J by Howard Jacobson. Wasn't on my radar before this morning, and it's still a couple of months till its publication date, but the book's being described as a modern-day Brave New World or Nineteen Eighty-Four. Suddenly I need to read it.
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Late July New Releases
@auspex: A strange delay between release dates in this day and age, but true, to be sure. This one's well worth the wait in any case.
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Late July New Releases
@MadLogician: You're quite right, it looks like. The listings I'm looking at now have it out in November hereabouts, and January 2015 (!) in the States. Weird. I'll have to look into this. Meantime, many thanks for the correction.
And Finally, For Now, the Fall of the Novel
@stevenhalter: Tell you what, I've got my fingers crossed! It may be that they're a dying breed, but I'm a fan of novels, and I ain't ashamed to say it.
Endgame: The Causal Angel by Hannu Rajaniemi
@PrinceJvstin: Exceedingly well! Such that I was a touch taken aback by how much the whole series meant to me in the end...
Battling the Embuggerance
@Gerry__Quinn: Consider where the majority of your money goes when that happens. If you'd be happy to have Amazon as the only publisher in business in Britain, then, by all means, be blasé about the big company bullying the little companies into oblivion. Who needs 'em anyway, eh?
An All-New Context: The Spectral Link by Thomas Ligotti
@N. Mamatas: I was working with a digital edition, but I do believe the limited should be for sale shortly, yes. Hard to believe, really. But you won't catch me complaining.
Death After Death: The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North
@ScottKAndrews: Isn't it? One of the year's best, in my book. I can hardly wait for Touch in 2015...
Science Fiction Falling
@Booksnhorses: To answer your questions, yes... and no, I don't think so. But I figure that's half the fun of the Focus. :) @Nick H.: Point well taken, mate. Though I wouldn't call 11.22.63 a horror novel either, I admit I'd be more likely to consider it a part of that category than The Shining Girls, and on reflection, you're right—that's a ridiculous distinction.
Teller of Tales: The Way to Babylon by Paul Kearney
@Reiko: Glad to hear it. Also, sorry about that. I do love my alliteration; apologies if it affected your appreciation of the article. :)
Science Fiction Falling
@SchuylerH: Absolutely. Matter of fact, the honour of reviewing The Causal Angel has fallen to me. I have a couple of other books to get to first, but there should be something on the site soon, sir. @PrinceJvstin: If not better, necessarily, then different enough that it's apt to appeal to a whole other segment of the market—a segment I fall into, for one. Beforehand, I couldn't have given a hoot. Now I'd at least like to take a look...
It Reaches Out: Cibola Burn by James S. A. Corey
@Max Gardner & LadyBelaine: Actually, Bobbie is in Cibola Burn. Blink and you'll miss her, but you get the sense she and Avasarala will be back as perspective characters or, failing that, major players in book five. So there's that.
The Expanding Expanse: Abaddon’s Gate by James S. A. Corey
@3: What ShuylerH said. My review of the new novel should be on the site sometime soon—no later than the 17th, Cibola Burn's street date.
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Early June New Releases
@2 & 3: I appreciate the feedback. Not sure if embedding every cover is doable, but let me see what is, compromise-wise...
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Early June New Releases
Hours after submitting this editon of the Hitlist I was made aware that Acolyte by Seth Patrick has been delayed into 2015. Sorry for getting your hopes up, folks.
A Touch of Tours
@SchuylerH: Very interesting, if true. And it does have a certain ring of legitimacy; Baxter and Pratchett should have wrapped up The Long Earth Chronicles by then, and Reynolds will be well finished with his Poseidon's Children trilogy. At the very least the timing is right. Good spot, sir.
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Late May New Releases
@Jared_Shurin: Would reviews of both Tigerman and No Harm make up for me overlooking these in this edition of the Hitlist? Can't imagine how that happened...
Ctrl Alt Delete: Authority by Jeff VanderMeer
@Malana: I think I know the very scene you mean. Don't look behind you, right? @quinne: Or dark fantasy. Or cosmic horror. But DKT is quite right: the Southern Reach series has resisted classification so far. Let's just say it's great, whatever form or shape it takes. Welcomes Stefan Raets!
Awesome! Welcome aboard the great ship Stubby, sir. Couldn't have happened to a better blogger. :)
British Genre Fiction Hitlist: Early May New Releases
@Jared_Shurin: Very welcome. It does sound super. And it may be the Scotsman in me, but I'm determined to make time for the new Burnside, too...
Awards Dominate Eastercon
@Steven J Franklin: Jeez, really? Well good going, Lee; a well-deserved nomination, no doubt. And thanks, Steven, for pointing that out.
Awards Dominate Eastercon
Though I gather the comments I was about to respond to are gone, I do still want to clarify my perspective on the Gemmells. First things first: I meant no disrespect—none at all—to the authors nominated for the aforementioned awards. To one and all, well done. I'm particularly pleased to see Scott Lynch and Luke Scull on the list, but the absence of, say, Elizabeth Bear, really rankles. Now I don't have all the answers—I have press releases and opinions about them, and those are my own, of course—but between the complete lack of female fantasy on this shortlist and the decidedly dodgy representation of women writing science fiction discussed in the Focus before, I really struggle to understand that there are people who don't see a real problem here. A problem with perception, probably. And one we're never going to solve if we continue to act as if it doesn't exist.
Back to Business
@beeker73: Nowhere, I'm afraid. You can grab collections of the new prequels and the first few re-releases on Amazon for the moment, but we'll have to wait a few years for David Wingrove to self-publish ebooks of the remainder of the recast series. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news!
Tolkien in Translation
Not sure where you're seeing that, Nicholas. To be clear: no one's going under, but Quercus have been in fairly dire straits lately. The item you seem to have taken issue with is about how Hodder has stepped in to save them. Hodder are doing just fine for their part, as far as I'm aware.
Introducing Rocket Talk: The Podcast!
Awesome. Also: about time. Listening to the first episode already...

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