Thursday 1 January 2009

The Shape of Things to Come: Books for 2009

Here are some of the books to watch out for in 2009:

The Judging Eye by R. Scott Bakker
Orbit Books (UK): 15/01/09

Overlook Press (USA): 02/02/09

Reviewed here. The first book in The Aspect-Emperor Trilogy picks up 20 years after the end of The Thousandfold Thought and depicts the beginning a great crusade against the Consult, led by Kellhus, now acknowledged as the god-emperor of the Three Seas. A thoughtful and darkly poetic novel with a conclusion that will no doubt generate vast reams of discussion across the blogosphere until the sequel, The White-Luck Warrior, comes out in 2010.

The Steel Remains by Richard Morgan
Gollancz (UK): out now
Del Rey (USA): 20/01/09

Richard Morgan's first fantasy novel is a gripping, taut and visceral story with some brilliant worldbuilding and terrific ideas. Expect more criticism of the explicit sex and violence when the book hits US stores, but this is a first-rate novel, although admittedly not Morgan's best work.

Graceling by Kristin Cashore
Harcourt (USA): out now
Gollancz (UK): 22/01/09

Reviewed here. Cashore's debut novel is a semi-YA-oriented story about people with supernatural abilities called 'graces', how they use them and how they are used and manipulated by others. An enjoyable book with some interesting ideas.

Yellow Blue Tibia by Adam Roberts

Gollancz (UK): 22/01/09

Reviewed here. Roberts' new novel is a weird, funny but fascinating story that twists and turns in a very impressive manner through the 1986 USSR.

Malice by Chris Wooding

Scholastic Press (UK): 02/02/09

The first in a YA duology from the ever-reliable but underrated Chris Wooding.

Wings of Wrath by Celia Friedman

DAW (USA): 03/02/09

Orbit Books (UK): 05/02/09

The second volume of Friedman's Magister Trilogy, following on from Feast of Souls.

Dragonfly Falling by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Tor (UK): 06/02/09

The second book in the Shadows of the Apt series looks set to continue the positive buzz from the first sequence. The third book is also due in August.

Drood by Dan Simmons
Little, Brown (USA): 09/02/09
Quercus (UK): 05/03/09

Simmons' new novel is a mammoth historical tome about the end of Charles Dickens' life and his incomplete final novel, The Mystery of Edwin Drood. The SF&F elements are reportedly minor, but this should prove to be an interesting read regardless.

The Best of Gene Wolfe by Gene Wolfe

Tor (USA): 17/03/09

Gene Wolfe selects his thirty-one finest short stories for publication in this career retrospective. A solid collection for Wolfe veterans or those looking to get into his work for the first time.

Cyberabad Days by Ian McDonald

Pyr (USA): 24/02/09

Gollancz (UK): 19/03/09

McDonald returns to the world and setting of River of Gods in this new short story collection.

Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry

Saint Martin's Griffin (USA): 03/03/09

Gollancz (UK): 16/04/09

Reviewed here. A fun, if lightweight, techno-action thriller featuring lots of zombies.

Rides a Dread Legion by Raymond E. Feist

HarperCollins Voyager (UK): 09/03/09

Eos (USA): 31/03/09

The first of the Demonwar Saga, a short duology which chronicles the fourth of the five great riftwars to ravage the world of Midkemia. Feist's form has been spotty (but mostly disappointing) for the past decade, but it will be interesting to see if he can regain some of his former fire with the conclusion of his immense 30-volume Midkemian saga (four more books after this one) starting to come into sight.

The Warded Man by Peter V. Brett
HarperCollins Voyager (UK): out now
Del Rey (USA): 10/03/09

The US publication of Peter Brett's much-acclaimed debut novel, which was published last year under the title The Painted Man. A vivid and interesting premise and world give rise to a story with plenty of excellent twists and turns. Full review here.

The Adamantine Palace by Stephen Deas
Gollancz (UK): 19/03/09

Deas' debut novel is set in a fantasy world where dragons are controlled and used as weapons of war, but where the balance of power is threatened when one of the dragons escapes and becomes aware of its race's oppression. A good story is undermined by a lack of worldbuilding depth, but it remains a rattling good read and a robust response to the 'Pernification' (or more latterly, 'Temeraireification') of dragons in the fantasy genre over the last few decades, which Smaug would not be amused by.

The Temporal Void by Peter F. Hamilton

Macmillan (UK): Out now

Del Rey (USA): 24/03/09

This second volume in The Void Trilogy is a significant step up from The Dreaming Void, with the narrative strands becoming more tightly interwoven and Edeard's story in the Void demonstrating Hamilton's skills at working in either SF or Fantasy. Unfortunately, it looks like UK and US readers alike will have to wait for mid-2010 for the conclusion to the series, The Evolutionary Void.

Turn Coat by Jim Butcher

Orbit Books (UK): 02/04/09

Roc (USA): 07/04/09

The eleventh novel in Butcher's popular Dresden Files series of urban fantasies.

Zima Blue and Other Stories by Alastair Reynolds

Night Shade Books (USA): out now

Gollancz (UK): 16/04/09

This is Alastair Reynolds' second collection of short fiction. His first, Galactic North, collected together the stories from his signature Revelation Space setting, whilst this second collects his independent works. Originally published back in 2007 as a limited edition from Nightshade Books, Gollancz are giving the book its first wide release in early 2009.

Blood of Elves by Andrzej Sapkowski
Gollancz (UK): out now
Orbit US: 28/04/09

The first in a five-novel sequence featuring Sapkowski's iconic character of Geralt, the Witcher, whose first adventures received their English debut in 2007 in The Last Wish. Both Gollancz and Orbit have inexplicably skipped the second short story collection, The Sword of Destiny, which directly sets up the characters and storylines for the novel sequence. Still, Blood of Elves apparently has enough of a stand-alone feel to it to work without the earlier book being a necessity.

God of Clocks by Alan Campbell

Spectra (USA): 28/04/09

Tor (UK): September 2009

The third book in the well-received Deepgate Codex series.

Fall of Thanes by Brian Ruckley
Orbit US: 03/05/09
Orbit Books (UK): 07/05/09

The third and concluding volume in Ruckley's debut Godless World series is eagerly awaited by those who enjoyed the first two volumes, Winterbirth and Bloodheir, although I will likely wait until after the third book comes out before reading the last two.

The City and the City by China Mieville
Macmillan (UK): 15/05/09
Del Rey (USA): 26/05/09

Mieville's new book is a stand-alone noir thriller set in a fictional pair of eastern European cities. His publishers are extremely excited about this novel, naming it his best work to date. This is easily one of my most eagerly-awaited books of the year.

The Cardinal's Blades by Pierre Pevel

Gollancz (UK): 21/05/09

The English translation of an acclaimed French fantasy novel which mixes traditional history with fantasy as a group of dragons ally with the kingdom of Spain and threaten France, forcing Cardinal Richileu to take drastic steps to oppose them.

Warbreaker by Brandon Sanderson
Tor (USA): 09/06/09

Sanderson's new stand-alone following his acclaimed Mistborn trilogy has been developed in full public view on his website, with new full drafts of chapters and the entire book published upon completion so readers can follow the writing process. The published novel will likely be another big success for him, and raise awareness of his name ahead of the publication of the final Wheel of Time novel - which he is completing - at the end of the year.

Nights of Villjamur by Mark Charan Newton

Tor (UK): 12/06/09

SF&F blogger and commentator Newton's debut novel and the first book in his Legends of the Red Sun series is already generating some pre-release buzz, and should be well worth a look when it comes out.

Retribution Falls: Tales of the Ketty Jay by Chris Wooding

Gollancz (UK): 18/06/09

Wooding offers something a bit different with this story (formerly called The Ace of Skulls) of airships, pilots and daring-do. Think of the classix X-Box/PC game Crimson Skies and you're probably halfway there.

Best Served Cold by Joe Abercrombie
Gollancz (UK): 18/06/09
Orbit US: 29/07/09

Abercrombie's follow-up to the First Law trilogy is a stand-alone set in the same world, although expect a few cross-overs from minor characters. It is a tale of mayhem, blood and murder set in the lands of Styria, and should be an interesting change of pace and focus from Abercrombie's debut work.

Jasmyn by Alex Bell

Gollancz (UK): 18/06/09

The second novel by Alex Bell, whose debut, The Ninth Circle, attracted good reviews last year.

Dragon Keeper by Robin Hobb

HarperCollins Voyager (UK): 01/07/09

Hobb returns to the world of the Six Duchies with this stand-alone novel set in the Liveship Traders mileu.

Avilion by Robert Holdstock

Gollancz (UK): 16/07/09

Holdstock returns to his Mythgo Wood sequence with this much-awaited new fantasy.

The Price of Spring by Daniel Abraham
Tor (USA): 22/07/09
Orbit (UK): 03/09/09
(as part of Seasons of War, see below)

Daniel Abraham's mighty Long Price Quartet comes to its gripping and fascinating conclusion. One of the stand-out fantasy debuts of recent years, whever Abraham does next will be eagerly awaited.

Songs of the Dying Earth, edited by George R.R. Martin & Gardner Dozois

Subterrenean Press (USA): August 2009

HarperCollins Voyager (UK): 05/10/09

GRRM and Gardner Dozois have assembled a formidable array of talent for this tribute anthology set in Jack Vance's seminal Dying Earth mileu. Dan Simmons has contributed a major novella to the project, with the remainder of the stories being written by Kage Baker, Glen Cook, Terry Dowling, Phyllis Eisenstein, Neil Gaiman, Elizabeth Hand, Matt Hughes, Tanith Lee, Elizabeth Moon, Mike Resnick, Lucius Shepherd, Robert Silverberg, Jeff VanderMeer, Paula Volksy, Howard Waldrop, Liz Williams, Walter Jon Williams, Tad Williams, John C. Wright and GRRM himself. Jack Vance and Dean Koontz are also contributing forewards and appreciations for the book.

The Desert Spear by Peter V. Brett
HarperCollins Voyager (UK): 03/08/09
Del Rey (USA): early 2010 (est.)

The sequel to Brett's compelling debut, The Painted Man (aka The Warded Man in the USA), will focus on different characters to the first novel and indicates a dramatic shift in structure and setting over the more traditional first novel.

Blood of the Mantis by Adrian Tchaikovsky

Tor (UK): 07/08/09

Tchaikovsky concludes his well-received Shadows of the Apt trilogy.

Traitor's Gate by Kate Elliott

Tor (USA): 18/08/09

Orbit Books (UK): tbc

The conclusion to Elliott's Crossroads trilogy should wrap up the interesting storylines and character arcs from the first two, highly inventive novels in the series.

Ark by Stephen Baxter Gollancz (UK): 20/08/09

The sequel to last year's Flood, an enjoyable disaster novel although based on suspect science. In this sequel the fate of an American mission into deep space to escape the rising waters on Earth is revealed, and the fate of the Earth after the flood is also explored.

The Rats and the Ruling Sea by Robert V.S. Redick

Gollancz (UK): 20/08/09

This sequel to The Red Wolf Conspiracy sees our heroes trying to break the deadlock between the forces of good and evil established in Book 1, whilst the villains' plans to plunge the two great empires of the world into war and chaos continues.

Dust of Dreams by Steven Erikson
Bantam (UK): 27/08/09
Tor (USA): late 2009 (est.)

The penultimate volume of The Malazan Book of the Fallen is eagerly-awaited by Erikson's growing number of fans. Expect a return to Lether and a showdown between the Bonehunters and their allies against the returned K'Chain Che'Malle, among many other storylines.

The Long Price: Seasons of War by Daniel Abraham
Orbit (UK): 03/09/09

This omnibus edition packages the final two books of Abraham's Long Price Quartet, An Autumn War and The Price of Spring. Orbit are extremely excited by this release and hopefully will trail it with a marketing and awareness campaign that was notably lacking for The Long Price: Shadow and Betrayal.

The Cold Commands by Richard Morgan
Gollancz (UK): 17/09/09
Del Rey (USA): early 2010 (est.)

The follow-up to The Steel Remains. Expect more first-rate storytelling and fantasy mayhem, along with a deepening of the storyline linking the books together.

Times of Anger by Andrzej Sapkowski
Gollancz (UK): 15/10/09
Orbit US: early 2010 (est.)

The second in the five-volume Witcher novel sequence gets its long-awaited English-language debut, although the title appears to have been mistranslated: I am reliably informed by Polish friends that the correct title is Time of Disdain, which sounds a lot better.

Shadowrise by Tad Williams

DAW (USA): November 2009

Orbit Books (UK): tbc

The epic conclusion to Williams' Shadowmarch Trilogy.

A Memory of Light, Part I by Robert Jordan and Brandon Sanderson
Tor (US)/Orbit Books (UK)
November 2009 (est.)

The twelfth and final volume of the massive Wheel of Time series, being completed posthumously by Brandon Sanderson after Robert Jordan's passing in late 2007, is so huge in size that it looks almost certain it will be split in half. The hope is that the second volume would follow in the spring or summer of 2010. Based on Sanderson's comments, it sounds like this book will resolve the remaining outstanding story issues left dangling from Knife of Dreams, such as the planned rescue of Moiraine, the forging of a lasting truce between Rand al'Thor and the Seanchan and Elayne's consolidation of control over Andor. The Last Battle itself will likely wait until the concluding half.

Watcher of the Dead by J.V. Jones
Tor (US)/Orbit Books (UK)
November 2009 (est.)

With Jones' writing time on individual volumes of her excellent Sword of Shadows series exceeding George RR Martins' recent publication speed, the news that the fourth book in the six-volume series should appear only two years after the third is very welcome indeed.

Wild Cards: Suicide Kings, edited by George R.R. Martin

Tor (USA): December 2009 (est.)

The new Wild Cards trilogy comes to a close with the publication of Suicide Kings, which rounds off the story about the new generation of Jokers and Aces.

Above the Snowline by Steph Swainston

Gollancz (UK): 03/12/09

Eos (USA): 2010 (est.)

This is the fourth novel in Swainston's Fourlands cycle, but as a prequel it steps back before the events of The Year of Our War and shows the beginnings of the character arcs and storylines explored in the books to date.

Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett

Doubleday (UK)/Harper (USA): late 2009

The next adult Discworld novel by Terry Pratchett is about the Unseen University and the mayhem that results when a college football team is formed. Despite battling his illness, Pratchett is bullish about future projects, having already lined up this book, I Shall Wear Midnight (the next Tiffany Aching novel) and another, Raising Taxes (the third book in the Moist von Lipwig sub-series).

Under the Dome by Stephen King

Scribner (USA)/Hodder (UK): late 2009

The enormous new novel from Stephen King, who has tried to write this book twice before but failed. Apparently his new novel is his longest for some time and will address some of the same issues and themes as The Stand, but in a different way.

A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin
Bantam (US)/HarperCollins Voyager (UK): date tbc

Making its fourth subsequent appearance on most people's 'eagerly-awaited' lists, there is, as usual, great hope that this book will appear before the end of the year. Newer excerpts that have appeared online or read at conventions hint at the book's continuing evolution for the better, with more dynamic action and plot development now appearing in chapters previously focused exclusively on characterisation. As usual, though, don't believe anything until GRRM has announced the book as being finished.

The Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch
Bantam (US)/Gollancz (UK): date tbc

The third book in Lynch's Gentleman Bastard series remains resolutely MIA, with release dates being constantly pushed back (even the current estimates of late 2009 seem shaky) and Scott himself maintaining radio silence. With a mixed reception to Red Seas Under Red Skies and some vital structural changes apparently being laid for the series as a whole, the third book has a lot of work to do and it will be interesting to see if Scott can pull it off.

The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
DAW (USA)/Gollancz (UK): date tbc

The sequel to the big new debut of 2007, The Name of the Wind, remains MIA, although a 2009 publication does appear moderately more likely due to the recent publication of the prologue on Pat's Fantasy Hotlist. It will be interesting to see if Rothfuss can more successfully adapt the Harry Potter stylings of the first book into something darker and more intriguing.

The Deserter by Peadar O Guilin
David Fickling Books (UK & USA): date tbc

The sequel to Peadar's splendid debut novel, The Inferior, has been delivered but the publication date is unclear at the moment. Hopefully we'll get it before the end of the year.

The Edge of Ruin by Melinda Snodgrass

Tor (USA): date tbc

This sequel to The Edge of Reason continues the struggle chronicled in the first book.

Hawkwood and the Kings by Paul Kearney

Century of the Soldier by Paul Kearney

Solaris (UK & USA): date tbc

This two-volume omnibus edition of Paul Kearney's excellent Monarchies of God series is eagerly awaited by old fans as well as new, as the new edition will contain new appendices, a comprehensively-rewritten new edition of the formerly disappointing final volume of the series (Ships from the West) and probably new maps as well.

The Sorcerer's House by Gene Wolfe

Publisher and date tbc

Wolfe may be advancing in years, but if anything his writing speed seems to be accelerating. Coming hot on the heels of Pirate Freedom! and An Evil Guest, Wolfe's new novel may make it out before the end of 2009, and he is already working on another new novel, Home Fires.

The Dervish House by Ian McDonald

Gollancz (UK)/Pyr (USA): date tbc

McDonald's new novel does for Turkey what River of Gods did for India and Brasyl for Brazil. However, it looks more likely that this will be published in 2010.


Larry Nolen said...

Very good work here, Adam! I'm going to post a link to it on my blog in a little bit and add a few more to it (perhaps others can do this to pad it out even more?) Thanks for going through the effort to getting this done :D

Mndrew said...

I understand Steven Brust has completed and submitted his next Vlad Taltos novel, with an expected summer release.

ediFanoB said...

Kudos! Adam. Great list. Maybe you are also interested in:

January 2009 Spotlight by Robert

James said...

Great work, Adam! I'll bookmark this as my guide to the year and will also post a link on my blog.

Mark Newton said...

Hey Adam - great round-up and thanks for the mention. Just one correction though - Nights of Villjamur is being published by Tor UK (Pan Macmillan) and not Tor US!

Liviu said...

Some more genre books I look forward for 09 in addition to this magnificent list and the books mentioned by Larry on his blog:

Gears of the City by F. Gilman - technically 2008, but should count as early 09 - sequel to Thunderer goes into clear New Weird territory, though it reminded me a lot of the Long Sun series by G. Wolfe and it made me embark on the project of reading the 7 books (including Short Sun) end to end in the next several months.

Sharing Knife 4: Horizons by L. Bujold - end of the double duology

Corambis by S. Monette - end of another double dulogy

Avempartha by Michael Sullivan - small press author in the S. Lynch style adventures of a thief/fighter pair with deep undercurrents - I truly enjoyed book 1, The Crown Conspiracy, this is book 2 and all planned 6 books in the series are written and ready to go.

The Rise of the Iron Moon by Stephen Hunt - book 3 in his loose series

Kings and Assassins by Lane Robins - sequel to Maledicte

Shadow Magic by Jaida Jones and Danielle Bennett - sequel to Havemercy

Amyrantha's Gods by Jennifer Fallon - book 2 of 4 in Ms. Fallon Tide Lords series. I enjoyed the first book so much that I spent a bit too much money to get all remaining 3 books from Australia where they have been published in 07/08 since I truly cannot wait several years to the projected US/UK 2011 release of book 4. That is the package of books I am looking forward to the most in the next 2-3 weeks

Mortal Coils by E. Nylund - Robert loved it, and I just bought an arc of Abe, really looking forward to this one

In SF:

In the Courts of the Sun by Brian D'Amato.

Seeds of Earth by Michael Cobley

The Grand Conjunction by Sean Williams - end of his superb so far Astropolis

Anonymous said...

Watcher of the Dead by J.V. Jones
is listed by locus magasine as a september release :)

great list

Adam Whitehead said...

I should point out that the list more reflects the books I am interested in that are coming out in 2009, rather than an attempt to do an exhaustive everything-and-the-kitchen-sink list that some other blogs have done ;-)

Mark, I must admit that the cover art did seem more...classy than what I'd expect from Tor US (although their Warbreaker cover is admittedly quite nice, he said in a hasty/blatant ass-covering maneuver). This news is also welcome due to me starting to get ARCs from Macmillan (and I hope this extends to the Tor imprint as well)!

As for Watcher for the Dead, the release date seems to be changing every five minutes, so I'll hold fire on changing that for now.

Many thanks for everyone's positive comments!

Mark Newton said...

I do love the cover! Yes, Tor UK is Pan Mac - it's exactly the same people! - so you shouldn't have any problems. I'm sure if you drop them a line, they'll be able to give you some more info.

Anonymous said...

2009 is going to be a great year for reading.

I've got my fingers crossed that new books from Lynch, Rothfuss and Martin actually materialize, you can never know.

Also thanks Adam I hadn't heard of "The Painted Man" So I'm going to try and pick up a copy here in the next couple weeks. Your review makes it sound very intriguing.

Glenda Larke said...

Sure is a male-author-oriented list - or are there really so few women writing out there?

Adam Whitehead said...

50-odd books with 8 by female authors (Robin Hobb, Celia Friedman, Alex Bell, JV Jones, Steph Swainston, Melinda Snodgrass, Kate Elliott and Kristin Cashore), which possibly reflects the current state of the male/female divide in SF&F (particularly outside the urban subgenre, of which I am not a massive fan). It's also possible that KJ Parker may have a new book out given her high output to date, and I think Lisa Tuttle might have something as well (I need to recheck her blog). I think Justina Robson has a new book as well, but her recent Quantum Gravity series left me cold.

I do need to catch up and read Liz Williams, whose work has been recommended to me.

Tree Frog said...

Do you know if another Glen Cook omnibus is coming out? Love the amazing covers and the works themselves.

Glenda Larke said...

You're saying that over 80% of sf/f books are written by male authors?? I find this figure staggering. Maybe because I am Australian and the majority of sf/f writers down under seem to be female at the moment. I just ran through the professionally published books eligible for the Australian Aurealis SF/F awards this year - and there were slightly more books published by women than by men.

May I ask - are you just guessing or are your certain? Perhaps you just read more male authors and are therefore more aware of them? I am intrigued by the idea of national trends being different...

Larry Nolen said...

Glenda, going by the Locus List of Forthcoming Books, or at least the January-Febuary 2009 totals, it is slightly over 2:1 men to women. Then again, Locus doesn't list very many urban fantasies, in part because it doesn't often list mass-market paperbooks (mostly just the hardcover and tradeback releases).

Adam Whitehead said...

It's probably higher than 20%. However, as I said, I am not a fan of the urban fantasy genre, which is where it appears that a lot of the female genre writers are going at the moment.

To be honest, I am not an affirmative action reader. I read books because they look interesting, not because they are written by a man, woman or whatever. I believe there's only one book on my list written by a gay person and none by a black person. There's only two by Irish writers and only one by a Polish writer. Does that mean I 'need' to seek out books written by those people to create some sort of artifical balance? I don't think so ;-)

glenda larke said...

Urban fantasy/paranormal romance may be more the domain of women writers, but there's not too many of those among Australian SFF writers. So I suspect there is a national difference here which I find intriguing. In fact, I suspect we have a higher proportion of women writers in SF (space opera and media tie-ins mostly) than the UK does, although I would hate to be asked to back up that generalisation with figures from UK side...

No, Adam, please don't become an affirmative action reader! Life is too short to read bad books, "bad" here being ones you don't enjoy. On the other hand, nothing gets my goat worse that someone who won't look at women (black/gay/whatever) writers at all because they are women (black/gay/whatever). That is just plain stupid.

It is the book and the story that counts, always.

Anonymous said...

Glenda, as someone who's in the UK I suspect you're right about a UK/Australia difference; it's my perception that UK genre publishing is *very* male at the moment, particularly on the science fiction side. I do my best to track science fiction novels published in the UK each year (because I'm interested in what's eligible for the Clarke Award, which doesn't consider fantasy), and this year I found 65 books, of which 12 were by women -- and about half of those were either published as "mainstream" or as YA. I'm sure there are titles I've missed (in particular, I only included a few YA titles -- although more my women than men -- which seemed to be of crossover interest), and I'm sure there's a higher proportion of women publishing fantasy, but for science fiction these numbers are consistent with what I've found over the last few years. It's a constant frustration to me that there are a number of high-profile female science fiction writers without UK publishers (off the top of my head: Jo Walton, Elizabeth Bear, Susan Palwick, CJ Cherryh, Lois McMaster Bujold, Karen Traviss [except for her tie-in fiction], Nancy Kress, Kit Reed ...).

Glenda Larke said...

Omigod, that's an extraordinary list, Niall. I can't imagine why they aren't snapped up. I feel humbled.

Mind you, I know the perception among publishers in Oz is that SF is definitely a harder sell than fantasy, and SF writers complain about how difficult it is to get published, especially if you write hard SF. Perhaps the same thing applies in the UK.

The more I learn about publishing, the more astonished I am about how little we know about what makes a book sell...

Anonymous said...

I think something like it must. There's also the fact that the largest UK sf publisher, Gollancz, has a specific policy/strategy of developing British talent -- which is great, except when it isn't, if you see what I mean.

Oh, and it occurs to me that the book missing from Adam's list is Spirit by Gwyneth Jones. (She also has a collection due out at some point.)

Liviu said...

There quite a few Australian female authors that I like, though I never consider the gender of an author as a reading criterion.

Jennifer Fallon - as mentioned I just ordered her Tide Lords 2-4 from an Australian bookshop she recommended on her site and while somewhat pricey including sh I really want those books asap, barely can wait for the package -

Karen Miller, Marianne de Pierres, Anna Tambour, Pamela Freeman, KJ Bishop...

Regarding UK authors, I enthusiastically endorse Spirit by G. Jones, not only I ranked as my #2 sf book and in the top 5 overall for 2008, but it made me get the older books set in the Aleutinian universe.

I also liked Winterstirke by L. Williams a lot and I got all her earlier sf novels, and read 3 of them so far with the rest to come,
while Alex Bell's debut Ninth Circle was a favorite too and I am looking forward to her next novel too.