Sunday, 28 April 2013

Matt Stover's ACTS OF CAINE series comes to the UK

The first four volumes in Matt Woodring Stover's critically-acclaimed Acts of Caine series are being published for the first time in the UK on 27 May.



The books are only being published as ebooks, though hopefully a UK publisher will follow up with paper copies at some point.

The series is set on a futuristic Earthwhich has discovered the existence of Overworld, a parallel world with a culture and tech level more like traditional epic fantasy worlds. The central character is Hari Michaelson, an actor on Earth who travels to Overworld to play the role of the deadly assassin Caine. His adventures are recorded to be shown as entertainment on Earth. Needless to say, complications and mayhem ensue.

To date, four books have been published: Heroes Die (1997), Blade of Tyshalle (2001), Caine Black Knife (2008) and Caine's Law (2012). Stover has projected up to three more volumes to follow. I will be reviewing the series in the coming months.

 Update: From Scott Lynch, via the comments:
"Oh, you fortunate people. HEROES DIE and BLADE OF TYSHALLE directly informed the writing of THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA... I'd dare say they were what taught me how to craft a novel. Matt is criminally underrated, and these books are bog standard for him, which is to say 'brilliant.' They're bold, startling, multi-layered, humane, and laugh-out-loud wonderful at frequent intervals. I'm not really anything resembling objective on Matt any more, and he's a friend, but I appreciated his work before I ever got to really know him."
Update 2: The UK ebooks have their own cover art, which is, erm, disappointingly generic:

10 comments:

Scott Lynch said...

Oh, you fortunate people. HEROES DIE and BLADE OF TYSHALLE directly informed the writing of THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA... I'd dare say they were what taught me how to craft a novel. Matt is criminally underrated, and these books are bog standard for him, which is to say 'brilliant.' They're bold, startling, multi-layered, humane, and laugh-out-loud wonderful at frequent intervals. I'm not really anything resembling objective on Matt any more, and he's a friend, but I appreciated his work before I ever got to really know him.

Elizabeth Bear said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Elizabeth Bear said...

Well, you guys just sold me the first book. ;-)

James Buckley said...

Heroe's Die begins brilliantly. It's hilarious. It rambles a bit in the second half, but it's still fresh and groundbreaking. And I mentioned hilarious.

Blade of Tyshalle has a few good scenes (the Caine scenes). Sadly I think you will find it rambles A LOT. A criminal failure in editing – easily twice as long as it should have been.

And my goodness, Stover over-uses dashes. Punctuation all over the place.

Anonymous said...

Am *really* hoping someone like Gollancz can obtain a contract to repackage/re-release Stover's books, because dammit, they deserve a larger readership.

Ilya

Nick said...

Easily my favourite series, with BLADE OF TYSHALLE probably being my favourite genre read of all time. Looking forward to the reviews.

Salt-Man Z said...

Best. Series. Ever.

Seriously, I hope these do well over there, and maybe some UK publisher will throw a bathtub of money at Matt so he can write the Act of Faith trilogy.

Adam Whitehead said...

A more careful analysis reveals that the ebooks are actually being published by Orbit (Amazon lists it as Hachette, which is Orbit's grandparent company, but apparently it is Orbit). I'm assuming a paper copy will follow at some point, as that also explains them going to the trouble of getting some new artwork in.

ohilya said...

Adam, is there any way to know if and when new paper copies will be published?

Ilya

mtVietnam said...

Many people were disappointed after reading Blade of Tyshalle because despite that it was being direct continuation of Heroes Die it was different in structure and tone; like, say, Maltese Falcon and War and Peace. Stover always trying something new, maybe that is why he is so underrated. Just be prepared.

Cover art: another guy in hood, really?