January 5th, 2009


NOT Talking About My Book

With 24 hours before the book comes out, I'm taking a break. I will be attempting to enter a zenlike state of calm by not mentioning that book at all (despite the fact that reviews and interviews are starting to pop up -- eep!) Just to prove I can do it, I'm going to use this entire entry to focus on other people's work.

Joshua Palmatier (jpsorrow) is a fellow DAW author, creator of the dawbooks community, and general nice guy. The Vacant Throne [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy] is the third and final book in his trilogy.

I reviewed his first book, The Skewed Throne, in my LJ almost two years ago.

The real strength of Palmatier's book lies in Varis. Varis is a bitter girl, hardened by years of living in the Dredge, but she retains a core of humanity. Her ability to slip into what she calls the river, where threats stand out as splashes of red in the currents of the world around her, makes her an intriguing point of view character ... I like Varis enough to want to read the next book. And I'm very eager to learn more about the history of the Skewed Throne and the origin of the White Fire, things that were only touched on in this book ... if you enjoy grittier fantasy, I would recommend picking up The Skewed Throne.
Read an interview with Joshua Palmatier here. Joshua is also doing a number of contests -- go check 'em out!

Next up we have Diana Pharaoh Francis (difrancis), whose latest book is The Black Ship [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy]. This is the sequel to The Cipher, a book I picked up because I like Di, the book sounded interesting, and it had kick-ass cover art.

Within the first few pages, you can tell Francis has serious worldbuilding skills. Crosspointe is a well-realized port city, full of the rich detail that most fantasies gloss over. And Lucy is a fun, stubbornly determined hero ... Overall, I'd strongly recommend the book. Francis writes very honestly. Characters and relationships are flawed. Victory comes with a cost. Magic is powerful, but it's a raw, poorly understood power, one that's difficult to control. Nor is Lucy invulnerable to her own magic. When she creates fire, she too is burned. It's a wonderful example of the price of magic, and I cheered the writer even as I gritted my teeth at Lucy's pain.
Read the full review here. Or hop over here and read an interview with Di.

Now might be a good time to remind readers that you can win four free books, including Joshua's, Di's, and the one that Shall Not Be Named Today, by answering eight simple questions. Details over here.

S. C. Butler (scbutler) also has a new book out. Queen Ferris [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy] is the second book in Butler's Stoneways Trilogy, and came out in mass market just last week.

I haven't yet had the chance to read Butler's work, so I'll turn to him for help on this one.

Queen Ferris is the second book in my Stoneways trilogy, which includes Reiffen’s Choice, and the third book, The Magicians’ Daughter, due out in April. The trilogy’s name says it all. I always liked Dwarves more than Elves, so I decided to write a book that way. With caves.
Anyone who's read my goblin books knows how I feel about elves. Bunch of pointy-eared prancers, they are! (Sorry, I think I channeled Darnak for a moment there.) Anyway, Butler sums up the trilogy thusly:

In Reiffen’s Choice we learn why Reiffen chose magic;
In Queen Ferris we learned what he did with his magic;
In The Magicians’ Daughter we learn what his magic did to him.
A longer interview with S. C. Butler is available here. You can also preview the books on Butler's web site.

ETA: I'm a dork, and almost forgot. Jackie Kessler has a project out tomorrow as well. A Red Hot Valentine's Day [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy] is a collection of ... let's call them "spicy" stories by four hot writers. Jackie's contribution tells how Jezebel and Daun first met all those millenia ago, and how their relationship has evolved over time.

I reviewed Jackie's book Hotter than Hell earlier this year. Jackie's a wonderful person and a skilled writer, so if you're looking for a more adult kind of fantasy, check this one out. But be warned -- in her own words, "Major demon nooky ensues. You should be 18 to read this story. And maybe take a cold shower after." Having read her other book, I can tell you that Jackie writes good demon nooky.

Now it's your turn. What else is out recently that you're excited to read? Where else should we be spending our holiday gift cards? (After we've run out and picked up that book, of course ;-)

Heaven's Bones, by Samantha Henderson
Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy
Red Hood's Revenge