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Posts Tagged ‘Farthing’

The Week in Review

October 11, 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.

 

  • This must have taken a massive amount of time, and it looks like it was entirely worth it. Helm’s Deep, in Lego. Awesome, in the truest sense of the word.

The Tor/Forge newsletter went out this week! Check out these fascinating articles from our authors:

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

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: Farthing by Jo Walton

October 2, 2013 3 comments

About Farthing: First published in 2006, Jo Walton’s Farthing was hailed as a masterpiece, a darkly romantic thriller set in an alternate postwar England sliding into fascism.

Eight years after they overthrew Churchill and led Britain into a separate peace with Hitler, the upper-crust families of the “Farthing set” are gathered for a weekend retreat. Among them is estranged Farthing scion Lucy Kahn, who can’t understand why her and her husband David’s presence was so forcefully requested. Then the country-house idyll is interrupted when the eminent Sir James Thirkie is found murdered—with a yellow Star of David pinned to his chest.

Lucy begins to realize that her Jewish husband is about to be framed for the crime—an outcome that would be convenient for altogether too many of the various political machinations underway in Parliament in the coming week. But whoever’s behind the murder, and the frame-up, didn’t reckon on the principal investigator from Scotland Yard being a man with very private reasons for sympathizing with outcasts and underdogs—and prone to look beyond the obvious as a result.

As the trap slowly shuts on Lucy and David, they begin to see a way out — a way fraught with peril in a darkening world.

Enter for a chance to win here!

(Ends November 1)

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

Grab Bag Sweepstakes

April 25, 2013 1,330 comments

Our bookshelves are a little overcrowded right now and we need to make room for new books arriving soon. So, we thought we’d make room by offering up books and more to you! Comment below to enter for a chance to win this prize pack:

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. You must be 18 or older and a legal resident of the 50 United States or D.C. to enter. Promotion begins April 25, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. ET. and ends April 30, 2013, 12:00 p.m. ET. Void in Puerto Rico and wherever prohibited by law. Please see full details and official rules go here. Sponsor: Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.

New Releases: 3/12/2013

March 12, 2013 Leave a comment

The Week in Review

March 8, 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.
 

 

  • Have you seen the new trailer for the upcoming Iron Man 3 movie? We admit we’re a little biased – we love super hero movies – but it looks pretty amazing.
  • There are rumors in the stamp collecting world that the U.S. Post Office is considering doing sci-fi stamps. What American sci-fi authors would you like to see on a stamp? According to the article, only 5 authors, who have been dead for at least five years, will be honored. A tough choice!
  • On Far Beyond Reality, you can read an excerpt of Brandon Sanderson’s The Rithmatist. Great Friday afternoon reading!

 
The Tor/Forge newsletter went out this week! Check out these fascinating articles from our authors:

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

Ignoring the Body in the Library: The World of Farthing

March 4, 2013 7 comments

Written by Jo Walton

I’ve always liked cosy mysteries like those of Agatha Christie, Dorothy Sayers, and most especially Josephine Tey. You know the kind of book; there’s a ridiculously contrived murder in a country house and a detective and lots of suspects. You can settle down into their lives and try to guess who’s guilty while the servants bring tea and buttered crumpets. It’s easy to lose track of the fact that somebody really has been violently killed, an event that would in any normal circumstances be horrifying. The way they’re written is soothing, with lots of physical detail and lots of complicated relationships and motivations and somehow the violent death gets lost in the cosiness.

I realised one day that the cosy mysteries that weren’t written in the thirties seemed to be set in an imaginary version of the thirties that had just gone on, past the point in history where things began to change during and after World War II. And that set me thinking about the thirties going on, with country houses and people complaining about the servants and offstage appeasement and poverty, and just how horrible that would have been. Dorothy Sayers’ Gaudy Night takes place the same time as George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier.

Farthing and its sequels (the Small Change series) take place in an extended version of the thirties. There is an abbreviated WWII and Britain and the Nazis agreed to call it a draw in May of 1941. In reality, Hitler kept offering Britain peace terms and couldn’t understand why Churchill didn’t take them. Any of the governments of the thirties would have. In the Small Change universe, when Hess flew to Britain with Hitler’s offer, Churchill had a slightly different cabinet, one that pushed him to negotiate. They made peace, with Hitler keeping everything up to the Channel. The US never came into the war. The thirties went on, and in 1949, a body is found during a country house weekend and a detective comes down from Scotland Yard to investigate.

I realised that I could use the language and conventions of the cosy mystery to talk about fascism. In the same way the cosy sidles up on death, I could sidle up on evil. Evil is so often an abstraction. People talk about the horrors of fascism; nobody talks about the appeal — and yet it did appeal. All those thousands of people in the torchlit marches in Nuremberg were there to have fun. Diana Mosley wrote, “Poor dear Hitler.” How could anyone write “Poor dear Hitler”? And how can you step away from knowing the monstrosity and the history to talk about how somebody could say that? Well, with tea and biscuits and a conservatory and a bit of a love story, the same way cosy mysteries approach the body in the library.

I did it in a different history, so that you can’t be sure of your ground. It’s very easy with history to feel safe, no matter what awful things you’re reading about, because you know they’re over, you know how things came out. In an alternate history you don’t know that. History isn’t inevitable, history is contingent. And history isn’t over. We are building history all the time, every moment, with every choice we make. All the choices we make add up to history. They are what history is. We are building history for the future.

I used to say that Farthing is a book about how good people do bad things. But now I prefer to say it’s about how all people do bad things — we’re compromised and imperfect and afraid for ourselves.

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