Upcoming: “Fall of Macharius” by William King (Black Library)

KingW-MC3-FallOfMachariusThe epic conclusion to The Macharian Crusade trilogy.

Long-time readers of the blog will know that I’ve been a fan of William King’s fiction ever since I read his first Gotrek & Felix short story (now collected in Trollslayer and the First Gotrek & Felix Omnibus). I’ve fallen a bit behind, though, and I need to catch up with the previous book in the series, Fist of Demetrius.

For decades, Lord Solar Macharius and his loyal forces have crusaded across the stars, bringing the Imperial Truth to uncounted worlds and purging aliens and heretics from the dark places at the fringe of the galaxy. But all things must come to an end. His soldiers are weary, his generals fractious, and the legend of Macharius may no longer be enough to hold them together. Called by a representative of Terra to a council of generals, Macharius fears treachery – but will it come from closer to home than he could possibly imagine?

Fall of Macharius is due to be published in hardcover on July 22nd, 2014, by Black Library.

Upcoming: “The Age of Ice” by J.M. Sidorova (Scribner)

Sidorova-TheAgeOfIceUKThis looks like an interesting novel. It has already been described as “boldly original and genrebending”, and it will apparently take readers “from the grisly fields of the Napoleonic Wars to the blazing heat of Afghanistan, from the outer reaches of Siberia to the cacophonous streets of nineteenth-century Paris”. Colour me very much intrigued…

The Empress Anna Ioannovna has issued her latest eccentric order: construct a palace out of ice blocks. Inside its walls her slaves build a wedding chamber, a canopy bed on a dais, heavy drapes cascading to the floor — all made of ice. Sealed inside are a disgraced nobleman and a deformed female jester. On the empress’s command — for her entertainment — these two are to be married, the relationship consummated inside this frozen prison. In the morning, guards enter to find them half-dead. Nine months later, two boys are born.

Surrounded by servants and animals, Prince Alexander Velitzyn and his twin brother, Andrei, have an idyllic childhood on the family’s large country estate. But as they approach manhood, stark differences coalesce. Andrei is daring and ambitious; Alexander is tentative and adrift. One frigid winter night on the road between St. Petersburg and Moscow, as he flees his army post, Alexander comes to a horrifying revelation: his body is immune to cold.

The Age of Ice is published by Scribner in the UK, and will be out near the end of July 2013.

Upcoming: “Gallow” Trilogy by Nathan Hawke (Gollancz)

HawkeN-Gallow1-CrimsonShieldI caught a tweet the other day from Gollancz’s publicist that copies of the first book in Nathan Hawke’s Gallow series had arrived in their office (oh, how they tease us bibliophiles…). Naturally, this made me seek out some more information about the series. It sounds pretty cool, too. The series is comprised of THE CRIMSON SHIELD, COLD REDEMPTION, and LAST BASTION, and will be published in July, August, and September (respectively). I do like it when publishers release series in quick succession…

Here’s the first synopsis…

I have been Truesword to my friends, Griefbringer to my enemies. To most of you I am just another Northlander bastard here to take your women and drink your mead, but to those who know me, my name is Gallow. I fought for my king for seven long years. I have served lords and held my shield beside common men. I have fled in defeat and I have tasted victory and I will tell you which is sweeter. Despise me then, for I have slain more of your kin than I can count, though I remember every single face.

For my king I will travel to the end of the world. I will find the fabled Crimson Shield so that his legions may carry it to battle, and when Sword and Shield must finally clash, there you will find me. I will not make pacts with devils or bargains with demons for I do not believe in such things, and yet I will see them all around me, in men and in their deeds. Remember me then, for I will not suffer such monsters to live.

Even if they are the ones I serve.

The one thing I’m not sure about is whether or not this is fantasy or historical, or a blend of the two… Nevertheless, this sounds pretty interesting. I’ll try to get my hands on the books to review on the site. Between these and Snorri Kristjansson’s Swords of Good Men, I may come over all Viking this summer…

Here are the other two covers (all three were done by Alejandro Colucci):

Hawke-Gallow2&3

Here’s the synopsis for book two, as well (still waiting for the third synopsis to surface on the internets…):

I fought against your people, and I have fought for them. I have killed, and I have murdered. I betrayed my kin and crippled my king. I led countless warriors to their deaths and fought to save one worthless life. I have stood against monsters and men and I cannot always tell the difference.

Fate carried me away from your lands, from the woman and the family I love. Three hellish years but now, finally, I may return. I hope I will find them waiting for me. I hope they will remember me while all others forget. Let my own people believe me dead, lest they hunt me down. Let me return in the dark and in the shadows so no one will know.

But hope is rare and fate is cruel. And if I have to, I will fight.

Upcoming: “The Detainee” by Peter Liney (Jo Fletcher)

Liney-Detainee

MOAR upcoming Jo Fletcher Books titles?! Why yes. And it looks like a doozy. (No, I do not work for them, I just really like what they publish.) This time, it’s a sci-fi debut I only learned about today – not sure how it slipped by, actually, as it sounds really interesting – Peter Liney’s The Detainee. Here’s the synopsis…

When the fog comes down and the drums start to beat, the inhabitants of the island tremble: for the punishment satellites – which keep the tyrannical Wastelords at bay – are blind in the darkness, and the islanders become prey.

The inhabitants are the old, the sick, the poor: the detritus of Society, dumped on the island with the rest of Society’s waste. There is no point trying to escape, for the satellites – the invisible eyes of the law – mete out instant judgement from the sky.

The island is the end of all hope – until ‘Big Guy’ Clancy finds a blind woman living in a secret underground warren, and discovers a reason to fight.

Colour me intrigued. The Detainee will be published on July 4th 2013 in the UK by Jo Fletcher Books. Expect more about The Detainee and Peter Liney on the blog in the near future…

Upcoming: “Blood Song” by Anthony Ryan (Ace)

RyanA-RS1-BloodSong

Anthony Ryan’s Blood Song was originally self-published, but Penguin snapped it up in 2012. I know a few other reviewers have already read the novel, and general consensus seems to be that it’s one to watch.

An epic fantasy exploring themes of conflict, loyalty and religious faith.

We have fought battles that left more than a hundred corpses on the ground and not a word of it has ever been set down. The Order fights, but often it fights in shadow, without glory or reward. We have no banners.

Vaelin Al Sorna’s life changes forever the day his father abandons him at the gates of the Sixth Order, a secretive military arm of the Faith. Together with his fellow initiates, Vaelin undertakes a brutal training regime – where the price of failure is often death. Under the tutelage of the Order’s masters, he learns how to forge a blade, survive the wilds and kill a man quickly and quietly.

Now his new skills will be put to the test. War is coming. Vaelin is the Sixth Order’s deadliest weapon and the Realm’s only hope. He must draw upon the very essence of his strength and cunning if he is to survive the coming conflict. Yet as the world teeters on the edge of chaos, Vaelin will learn that the truth can cut deeper than any sword.

Blood Song, the first book in Ryan’s Raven’s Shadow series, will be published by Ace Books in July 2013 in the US.

UPDATE: Rather quietly, it was announced that Orbit has bought publishing rights for the UK. The novel will be released as an eBook in April, and a Hardcover later in July. The UK artwork has been added to the top of the post, on the right.