Upcoming in 2017… Tor Books (US)

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Just a couple of handfuls of upcoming novels from Tor Books (there are many that look interesting, these stood out).

Featuring: Cory Doctorow, Thoraiya Dyer, A.J. Hartley, Michael Johnston, Nancy Kress, Laura Lam, Ian McDonald, John Scalzi, Brian Staveley, Allen Steele

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New Books (October-November)

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Featuring: Stefan Ahnhem, Ernesto Assante, Josiah Bancroft, Christopher Bollen, James Brogden, Adam Christopher, John Clarkson, Daniel Cole, E.L. Doctorow, Marc Elsberg, Carrie Fisher, Neil Gaiman, Laura Ann Gilman, Ryan Graudin, Adam Hamdy, Gregg Hurwitz, Dave Hutchinson, Gwyneth Jones, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Laura Lam, Michael Lewis, James Luceno, Josh Malerman, Seanan McGuire, Emma Newman, Chris Ould, James Patterson, Douglas Preston, Bryan Reesman, Matthew Reilly, J.P. Romney & Rebecca Romney, Richard Russo, Lento Salaperainen, Brett Savory, John Scalzi, Chris Smith, Jon Stewart, Hannah Tinti, Ian Tregillis, Thrity Umrigar, Matt Wallace, Weike Wang, Dan Wells, Ronald Wright

Above Artwork: Descender, Vol.02 (crop) by Dustin Nguyen (Image)

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Upcoming: COLLAPSING EMPIRE by John Scalzi (Tor)

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There is a new stand-alone sci-fi novel coming from John Scalzi early next year: The Collapsing Empire. It sounds rather interesting, too:

Humanity moves away from Earth, into space, and in time forgets our homeworld. It creates a new empire, the Interdependency, whose ethos ensures no one human outpost can survive without the others. It’s a safeguard against interstellar war – and a way of controlling the empire’s rulers. This future of faster-than-light travel is possible due to a huge discovery – the Flow. This is an extra-dimensional field which can transport us to other worlds. And while this field is eternal, like a river, it does change its course.

It now seems the Flow is moving, which could isolate every human world in space forever. So three individuals will make a last attempt to find a solution. A scientist, a starship captain and the Empress of the Interdependency will see what, if anything, can be salvaged. For an interstellar empire is on the brink of collapse.

Due to be published by Tor Books in the US and UK in March 2017.

Review: LOCK IN by John Scalzi (Gollancz/Tor)

Scalzi-LockInA solid sci-fi crime thriller

Imagine a plague that incapacitates almost 1.7 million people — and now imagine a cure that is even worse.

Fifteen years from now, a new virus sweeps the globe. 95% of those afflicted experience nothing worse than fever and headaches. 4% suffer acute meningitis, creating the largest medical crisis in history. And 1% find themselves “locked in” — fully awake and aware, but unable to move or respond to stimulus.

1% doesn’t seem like a lot. But in the US that’s 1.7 million people “locked in” — including the President’s wife and daughter.

Spurred by grief and the sheer magnitude of the suffering, America undertakes a massive scientific initiative. Nothing can fully restore the locked in. But then two new technologies emerge. One is a virtual-reality environment, “The Agora”, where the locked-in can interact with other humans, whether locked-in or not. The other is the discovery that a few rare individuals have brains that are receptive to being controlled by others, allowing those who are locked in to occasionally “ride” these people and use their bodies as if they were their own.

This skill is quickly regulated, licensed, bonded, and controlled. Nothing can go wrong. Certainly nobody would be tempted to misuse it, for murder, for political power, or worse…

Another very good novel from John Scalzi, offering an excellent blend of two genres. In Lock In, Scalzi takes core elements of the crime/conspiracy thriller and injects some excellent techno-sci-fi elements reminiscent of Surrogates and I, Robot. I enjoyed this. Continue reading