New Releases: 10/8/2013

October 8, 2013 1 comment

Goodreads Sweepstakes: Watcher of the Dark by Joseph Nasisse

October 7, 2013 Leave a comment

About Watcher of the Dark: New Orleans was nearly the death of Jeremiah Hunt, between a too-close brush with the FBI and a chilling, soul-searing journey through the realm of the dead that culminated with a do-or-die confrontation with Death himself. But now Hunt is back and on the run in Watcher of the Dark.

But when he performs an arcane ritual to reclaim the soul of the magically gifted, beautiful woman who once saved him, he must flee the law once again, to Los Angeles, city of angels, a temporary sanctuary.

In L.A., he has to contend with Carlos Fuentes, who sees in Hunt a means to obtain the mystical key that would open the gates of Hell. Fuentes knows Hunt’s weakness—his loyalty to the woman he loves, and to another “gifted” friend—and uses the real threat of torturing them as a way to get Hunt to help complete his dread quest.
Hunt has learned a lot since his life was irrevocably hijacked by fate months ago. But when his friends are threatened by the supernatural predator known as the Preacher, Hunt knows that all his newfound experience and ability will go for naught unless he can keep both the Preacher and Fuentes at bay long enough for him to somehow find a way to free his friends from mortal peril.

Joseph Nassise delivers another thrilling novel in his dark, urban fantasy series, the Jeremiah Hunt Chronicle.

Enter for a chance to win here!

(Ends October 25)

Also, don’t forget to check out our other sweepstakes!

Tor Books Announces Programming for New York Comic-Con 2013

October 7, 2013 2 comments

Celebrating LOCUS Magazine’s Best Publisher for the 26th year in a row!

Once again, we continue our popular *in-booth signings and giveaways, offering you a chance to meet your favorite authors up close and personal! There will also be panels and autographings featuring debut authors house favorites and special Ender’s Game official movie tie-in merchandise throughout the show!

Stop by Tor’s Booth (#2223), and pick up a schedule for a full listing of events!

Thursday, October 10th

GIVEAWAYS

5pm Booth giveaway, HALO: The Thursday War, the riveting new sequel in the New York Times bestselling Kilo-Five trilogy, based on the popular gaming franchise.

7pm Tor Booth giveaway, Ender’s Game official movie tie-in! Coming to theaters November 1st!

Friday, October 11th

PANELS

11am – 12:00pm THE WHEEL OF TIME TURNS, AGES COME AND PASS…AND STILL, EPIC FANTASY ALWAYS REMAINS EPIC |  Room 1A17

We invite you to stamp down the hobbit weed in your Churchwarden pipe, pleas, we beg you: throw out that invitation to Robb Stark’s red wedding (although it’s a killer affair. Join authors Elizabeth Bear, Peter Brett, Drew Karpyshyn, Scott Lynch, Brian Staveley and Michael J. Sullivan for an absolutely epic panel on high fantasy. In order to complete your quest to conquer this realm, you must learn what sets epic fantasy apart from other works of literary swords and sorcery…and beware of the Dark One, for lies are his dominion….

Moderated by Maryelizabeth Hart, Mysterious Galaxy

Autographing to follow.

1:30pm – 2:30pm KILL OR BE KILLED: CRAFTING A POWERFUL FEMALE PROTAGONIST |  Room 1A17

 

Five of YA’s most distinct voices discuss what/who was the inspiration for their female protagonist, the dilemmas that can define and shape a character’s sense of empowerment and clever tricks and tips for getting a heroine into/and out of the most diabolical or deadly of situations unscathed.

With Kendare Blake (Antigoddess), moderated by Thea James of The Book Smugglers

Autographing to follow.

2:45pm MYTH AND MAGIC IN THE CITY |  Room 1A17

Alternate histories, parallel worlds, mages and saints shape modern day fantasy and new legends in the making Max Gladstone and others discuss the art of writing urban fantasy with F. Paul Wilson, one of the originals in the genre.

Autographing to follow.

SIGNINGS & GIVEAWAYS

11am Tor Booth signing with F. Paul Wilson, signing copies of Cold City, a Repairman Jack novel.

12pm Tor Booth signing with V.E. Schwab, signing copies of Vicious. Schwab brings to life a gritty comic-book-style world in vivid prose: a world where gaining superpowers doesn’t automatically lead to heroism, and a time when allegiances are called into question

2pm Tor Booth signing with Hugo award-winning author Elizabeth Bear, signing copies of Range of Ghosts, Vol. 1 of The Eternal Sky trilogy.

5pm Tor Booth signing with debut author Brian Staveley, signing copies of THE EMPEROR’S BLADES, the first novel in The Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne coming from Tor in January.

Saturday, October 12thWe’ll be giving away Dragon Age posters and Halo tattoos all day!

PANELS

1:30pm PUBLISHER’S PARADISE: ADULT PUBLISHER SPOTLIGHT  |  Room 1A17

Get the inside scoop on upcoming SF/F novels publishing houses are buzzing about! Editors from Tor Harper Voyager, Orbit, Del Rey Spectra, Ace and Roc, and Harper Voyager dish on forthcoming books from our exciting authors and licensed properties. You can expect lots of giveaways you won’t see anywhere else at the convention, including free advance reading copies.

With Tor’s own Melissa Frain.

1:30pm ODE TO NERDS |  Room 1A14

Geek is chic, especially at NYCC, the center of the geekoverse. Everyone knows that published science fiction authors reign on the Geek Hierarchy charts because the Internet tells us so! Join us on this epic panel as the genre’s top names in publishing celebrate all things geeky and nerdy! Featuring V.E. Schwab, author of Vicious 

Autographing to follow.

5pm KIDS/YA PUBLISHER SPOTLIGHT   |  Room 1A17

Come hear the advance buzz about what’s coming up from Disney-Hyperion, First Second, Macmillan Kids, HarperCollins, Little, Brown, Random House, Penguin Young Readers, Scholastic, Simon & Schuster, and Tor!  Editors and marketing staff come together to recommend their favorite upcoming books by exciting new authors and illustrators – accompanied with giveaways, trivia, and most of all, FUN!

SIGNINGS & GIVEAWAYS

12pm  Tor Booth signing with Kendare Blake signing copies of Anna Dressed in Blood, one of NPR’s Top 5 YA Books for 2011!

2pm Booth giveaway, Dragon Age: Asunder.  Return to the dark fantasy world created for the award-winning, triple platinum game, Dragon Age™: Origins in this third tie-in novel!

5pm Tor Booth signing with Max Gladstone, signing copies of Three Parts Dead, his brilliant debut novel  (October 2012).

Sunday, October 13th

PANEL

10:45am   THE MAGIC OF STORYTELLING  |  Room 1A17

Entertain your reader with stories of ghouls, time traveling weenies, lurking monsters, outlandish outlaws and the intrepid teens that keep them all in line. Join David Lubar (Weenies series), Lemony Snicket (When Did You See Her Last?) and others as they discuss crafting stories rich with humor, adventure and mystery for young readers. Autographing to follow.

SIGNINGS & GIVEAWAYS

12pm Tor Booth signing with Mindee Arnett signing The Nightmare Affair, a brand new YA urban fantasy series featuring 16-year-old Dusty Everhart, an honest to goodness nightmare – literally!

2pm Tor Booth signing with David Lubar, signing Attack of the Vampire Weenies and giving away Vampire Weenie teeth, just in time for Halloweenie! 

*All giveaways are on a first come, first serve basis

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Everyone’s Invited to the Steampunk Party

October 7, 2013 10 comments

Written by K. W. Jeter

By the time you read this, or shortly thereafter, there’s good chance I’ll be preparing to head to Brighton, along with a lot of other folks attending the World Fantasy Convention. I’ve looked forward to this for quite a while, as it’ll be the first time in – ouch – a couple of decades for my wife and I to see our old friends in England. I fear I’ve reached the age where time doesn’t just fly, it rockets past on jet boosters.

The downside is that in making my travel plans this year, I had to choose between WFC and WorldCon in San Antonio. I have a lot of friends in Texas as well, whom I would’ve dearly loved to see again, if for no other reason than the Texans have a well-deserved reputation for knowing how to throw a party. Which certainly seems to have been the case once again, from the reports I’ve gotten from other folks who managed to get to WorldCon this year. As was expected, everybody I heard from had a good time.

And yet . . .

There was another, smaller but significant stream of post-con commentary. Which was to the effect of how old so much of everything seemed at WorldCon. (To paraphrase one on-line commentator, “If I’d wanted to hang out with a bunch of people in their seventies, bitching about how the whole world changed without their permission, I’d have gone to my parents’ house for Thanksgiving.”) The age thing was to be expected, I suppose; a lot of the science fiction community, both writers and readers, is getting greyer. But they’re still hanging in there and turning out for events, which is undoubtedly a good thing, even if the clack of chrome walkers on convention hall floors threatens to drown out some of the conversations.

But here’s the deal. I also hear reports from folks returning from steampunk events – and nobody complains about how old everything and everyone is at those. I’ve guested at a couple, and that’s been my impression as well: at least for the time being, the grey factor in the steampunk community is a lot less than in science fiction.

Which isn’t to say that there aren’t plenty of considerably younger people – writers, readers, fans, whatever – involved in science fiction, or that there’s even a hard, sharp division between the sf and steampunk communities; the overlap is pretty wide. And of course, there’s plenty of great and interesting and exciting stories and books coming out from both camps, from the old vets and those just starting out. No reason for everybody not to get along.

Once in a while, though, I catch a whiff of just a little animosity, coming from those closer than not to – ahem – my age bracket. A couple of years ago, at the World Fantasy Con in San Diego, I bumped into one of the science fiction field’s grandmasters, an undoubted Name Everybody Knows. He spotted a badge on my lapel: “What’s that?” When I answered that it was from SteamCon, the big steampunk event in Seattle, he snarled with evident disgust, “Isn’t it about time for that stuff to be over?”

That took me aback. I made some inconsequential reply, but it wasn’t until later – as it always is – that I figured what I should’ve said was, “Look, grandpa, just because you weren’t invited to the party, that’s no reason to get all sclerotic about it.” If I’ve got a new steampunk book coming out and you don’t, whose fault is that? These are invitations you issue to yourself, with no-one’s official imprimatur required.

And of course, a lot of steampunk is propelled by goggles-’n’-corsets High Silliness, but then a big part of science fiction gets moved along by the big media franchises equivalent – which frankly is starting to see some a little past its sell-by date. If some old fogey peering through his smudged bifocals can’t discern the cool and important stuff going on, such as the tsunami of anarchic multiculturalists using the steampunk scalpel to dissect the past and reassemble it like a two-dollar watch, that’s his loss; the readers are picking up on it. If the steampunk party is livelier and the music’s better than over at what used to be the completely happening genre hang-out, they’re still pretty much on the same block downtown, with nothing stopping people from going back and forth from one bar to the other, wherever the action might be.

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From the Tor/Forge October 7th newsletter. Sign up to receive our newsletter via email.

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On The Cusanus Game

October 7, 2013 3 comments

Written by Ross Benjamin, Translator

In The Cusanus Game, German author Wolfgang Jeschke tells a story at once exciting and philosophically far-reaching. In the mid-twenty-first century, a nuclear disaster near the French-German border has devastated a broad swath of Europe. In Rome – a city increasingly beset by the disastrous consequences of climate change and overrun by neo-fascist gangs preying on foreign refugees who have fled from the intolerable environmental conditions to the south – Domenica Ligrina has just completed her studies in botany. She and other scientists are recruited by the Vatican to take part in a secret time travel project: to journey to fifteenth-century Germany and collect plants and seeds with which the ravaged nature of the present can be revived. In Cologne of 1451, however, Domenica is accused of witchcraft and condemned to burn at the stake. She places her hope in Cardinal Nicolaus Cusanus, to whom she writes letters from prison.

Domenica has long been fascinated with the remarkably prescient ideas of this theologian-philosopher, who was a confidant of the Pope. As Jeschke shows, Cusanus’s cosmological thinking anticipates the theories of the multiverse in contemporary theoretical physics that are central to the plot and structure of The Cusanus Game. The game of the title was invented by Cusanus (and discussed in his work De Ludo Globi) to teach its players important principles of life and the world: The object is to throw a ball with a slight dent in it onto a board with concentric circles such that it spirals toward and comes to rest in the center; however, the dent ensures that the ball will never reach the center. A character in the novel explains the point of the game as training its players “to sustain defeats lightheartedly and good-humoredly” and yet to keep striving closer to the goal of perfection despite the obstacles that the fundamental unpredictability of events will always put in our path.

Domenica’s journey turns out not only to embody these themes, but also to mimic the “erratic path” of the ball in Cusanus’s game. As she lives out different possible timelines in alternate universes and repeatedly faces the dark abysses of human violence, destruction, and suffering, she seeks to set our world on a more sustainable course. She learns that every choice creates another parallel universe, but that not all universes can survive: like a living organism, the multiverse is constantly evolving, and Domenica eventually encounters extraordinary beings that play a role in its self-correcting process of development.

The Cusanus Game is a powerful novel of ideas seamlessly woven into a time travel adventure story. Its elaborately labyrinthine plot mirrors the spiraling game board as previously narrated events repeatedly follow new trajectories, while at the same time the protagonist’s experiences lead her to ever greater understanding and sense of purpose. The interplay between these different levels – personal and cosmological stakes, scientific and theological perspectives, environmental and metaphysical missions – makes the novel a profound and thrilling read.

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From the Tor/Forge October 7th newsletter. Sign up to receive our newsletter via email.

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The Week in Review

October 4, 2013 Leave a comment

Welcome to the week in review! Every Friday, we comb through the links and images we found and shared this week, and pull the very best for this post. Consider it concentrated genre goodness from all around the web.

  • Do you like science? How about cooking? If the answer is yes to both, then check out a free class from Harvard on the science of cooking.
  • Check out this amazing Wonder Woman short. It makes me want a full length film immediately!
  • Daniel Kalla, the author of Rising Sun, Falling Shadow, will be on LitChat today at 4 PM. Check it out!

And, just to make Friday that much sweeter, here’s a list of sweepstakes and sales we have going on!

Goodreads Sweepstakes: Prospero Lost by L. Jagi Lamplighter

October 3, 2013 Leave a comment

About Prospero Lost: More than four hundred years after the events of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, the sorcerer Prospero, his daughter Miranda, and his other children have attained everlasting life. Miranda is the head of her family’s business, Prospero Inc., which secretly has used its magic for good around the world. One day, Miranda receives a warning from her father: “Beware of the Three Shadowed Ones.” When Miranda goes to her father for an explanation, he is nowhere to be found.

Miranda sets out to find her father and reunite with her estranged siblings, each of which holds a staff of power and secrets about Miranda’s sometimes-foggy past. Her journey through the past, present and future will take her to Venice, Chicago, the Caribbean, Washington, D.C., and the North Pole. To aid her, Miranda brings along Mab, an aerie being who acts like a hard-boiled detective, and Mephistopheles, her mentally-unbalanced brother. Together, they must ward off the Shadowed Ones and other ancient demons who want Prospero’s power for their own…

Enter for a chance to win here!

(Ends November 1)

Also, don’t forget to check out our other sweepstakes!