Friday, 22 February 2008

Coming Soon: A Dance with Dragons and some other works

"Yeah, we've heard that before!" booms the sceptical crowd, but this time it looks like we're going to get the real deal. George RR Martin recently announced on his blog he's going to go hell for leather to finish A Dance with Dragons - the fifth volume of A Song of Ice and Fire - by the end of spring/start of summer. Bantam have already tentatively scheduled the book for October and released a publicity blurb for it. They've also released the American cover image, which is in keeping with the redesigned look for the previous books. I imagine Voyager will follow suit with the UK cover in the next few months.

Dubbed "the American Tolkien" by Time magazine, George R. R. Martin's monumental cycle of epic fantasy, "A Song of Ice and Fire," has earned him international acclaim. Now the #1 New York Times bestselling author delivers the fifth book in his spellbinding landmark series-as both familiar faces and surprising new forces vie for a foothold in a fragmented empire.

In the aftermath of a colossal battle, the future of the Seven Kingdoms hangs in the balance once again-beset by newly emerging threats from every direction. In the east, Daenerys Targaryen, the last scion of House Targaryen, rules with her three dragons as queen of a city built on dust and death. But Daenerys has three times three thousand enemies, and many have set out to find her. Yet, as they gather, one young man embarks upon his own quest for the queen, with an entirely different goal in mind. To the north lies the mammoth wall of ice and stone-a structure only as strong as those guarding it. There, Jon Snow, 998th Lord Commander of the Night's Watch, will face his greatest challenge yet. For he has powerful foes, not only within the Watch, but also beyond, in the land of the creatures of ice. And from all corners, bitter conflicts soon re-ignite, intimate betrayals are perpetrated, and a grand cast of outlaws and priests, soldiers and skinchangers, nobles and slaves, will face seemingly insurmountable obstacles. Some will fail, others will grow in the strength of darkness. But in a time of rising restlessness, the tides of destiny and politics will lead inevitably to the greatest dance of all...

Time Magazine praised A Feast for Crows: "Of those who work in the grand epic-fantasy tradition, Martin is by far the best." "Mainstream readers…have a great treat ahead of them in Martin. A Feast of Crows is a fast-paced, emotionally complex, masterfully written adventure."-Newsday. George R.R. Martin sold his first story in 1971 and has been writing professionally every since. He's written fantasy, horror, and science fiction. In the mid-nineties he returned to prose, his first love, and began work on his epic fantasy series "A Song of Ice and Fire." He has been in the Seven Kingdoms ever since. Whenever he's allowed to leave, he returns to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where he lives with the lovely Paris and two cats named Augustus and Caligula who think they run the place.
A Dance with Dragons is currently my most anticipated release of 2008, followed closely by Richard Morgan's The Steel Remains (August), Paul Kearney's The Ten Thousand (September) and Steven Erikson's Toll the Hounds (June).

The Steel Remains is Morgan's first fantasy novel, an ultra-gritty book set in a harsh world of conflict and treachery. The first in a trilogy (with the working title A Land Fit For Heroes), The Steel Remains will be published by Gollancz in August 2008.

The Ten Thousand is Paul Kearney's latest stand-alone novel. Loosely based on Xenophon's Anabasis Kyrou (about the invasion of Persia by an army of ten thousand Greek mercenaries), it promises to combine Kearney's trademark mastery of battle scenes with his typical flair for memorable characters. The Ten Thousand will be published by Solaris in September 2008.

Toll the Hounds is the eighth volume in Steven Erikson's increasingly popular Malazan Book of the Fallen series. This volume returns us to the continent of Genabackis and many of the series' signature characters, such as Anomander Rake, Duiker, Kruppe, Iskaral Pust and, it is rumoured, Caladan Brood, the Warlord. A great force of destruction is descending on fabled Darujhistan and the remnants of the Bridgeburners prepare for what could be their final battle. Recent novels in the sequence had been lacklustre before Reaper's Gale showed signs of improvement, so there are high hopes that a return to the series' roots could rejeuvenate the series as it heads into its final two volumes. Toll the Hounds will be published by Bantam UK in June 2008.


Anonymous said...

Wow. Recent volumes of the series have been lackluster?

Wow. You just lost a reader.

Anonymous said...

Wow can you contain your disapointment mate ;-)

Adam Whitehead said...

I'll live :-)

In fairness, after the rather troubled fourth through sixth volumes of the Malazan series, I keep forgetting that I quite enjoyed the seventh, even though it wasn't the true return to form it was championed as. I should amend that.

Anonymous said...

House of Chains, Midnight Tides, and The Bonehunters were "troubled"? That doesn't even make sense.

I'd like to see some actual meat on why you think they are "troubled" rather than just stating it with no facts....

You seem like an informed reader for the most part, but this lack of "evidence" is "troubled". :p

doc said...

hey this is doc from the itunes podcast: Heroes of Science Fiction and Fantasy, nice post about George R.R. Martin's books. I found this blog thru a google alert, and i am a huge fan of Martin. I don't know what the above comments refer to, but I am going to review Gardens of the Moon in episode 22 by Steven Erikson.(i have a book review section in the middle). website

rohrerbot said...

And years later.....A Dance with Dragons still isn't on the bookshelf!!! I just started the series last year....I'm on the 3rd book and taking my time. I'm hoping by the time I'm done with A Feast For Crows, it will be out:)