Booktopia SF & Fantasy Buzz
June 2014 | Edition 17
SIGN UP | CONTACT US
Welcome to the June Science Fiction and Fantasy Buzz
There has been a tiny trickle of information about Tad Williams' new trilogy since I spoke to in the May Buzz, the trilogy has a name: The Last King of Osten Ard. Interestingly Williams says: "If I explain who the king is, you'll start to get ideas about why that would be the "last king". So I'm not going in that direction. It's something that will only become clear in the final volume."

He's such a tease!

Fan's of Elizabeth Bear can also rejoice as the news that she has sold a new trilogy set in the same universe as her Eternal Skies series has broken. Look for the first book in the Lotus Kingdom trilogy sometime in 2017... Well, it gives you plenty of time read The Eternal Sky (start here) trilogy and get up to date if you haven't.

I wish you all happy reading this month, and don't forget to check out our Ten Terrifying Questions below. This month Jim Butcher is our special guest. Go forth and read them, and then pre-order Skin Game (or start from the beginning and order Storm Front). You won't look back!

Kind regards

Mark Timmony
Editor
Booktopia Science Fiction + Fantasy Buzz


Follow me on Twitter: @MarkTimmony

Booktopia
The largest Australian owned and operated online bookstore. 
Book of the Month
Click here for more details or to order SKIN GAME
by Jim Butcher


Mark says: Though this entry in the long running series doesn't push the over arcing storyline far, it sets things up that are - knowing Butcher's work - going to be HUGE. Have you been dying to discover just what this parasite is in Harry's head? Have you been hanging to see the Fallen Angels again? Have you been bouncing on the edge of your seat for waiting for Harry to get off Demonreach (his private island) and back on the streets of Chicago? All that and more awaits you within these pages dear friends.

The Dresden Files is my favourite Urban Fantasy. Butcher packs each of his books with heart-stopping action around thought provoking detective stories in supernaturally charged settings that leap off the page as he twists mythology and folklore to his own devices.

Blurb: Harry Dresden, Chicago's only professional wizard, is about to have a very bad day?

Because as Winter Knight to the Queen of Air and Darkness, Harry never knows what the scheming Mab might want him to do. Usually, it's something awful.

He doesn't know the half of it?

Mab has just traded Harry's skills to pay off one of her debts. And now he must help a group of supernatural villains - led by one of Harry's most dreaded and despised enemies, Nicodemus Archleone - to break into the highest-security vault in town, so that they can then access the highest-security vault in more...


Click here to order Skin Game
Retail Price: $34.99
Booktopia Price: $24.50 SAVE 30%
Read more...
BESTSELLERS
Taking the crown in positions one and two of this month's bestsellers are lyrical fantasists Laini Taylor and Neil Gaiman, both have a fairy tale whimsy to their work and are very talented writers. You haven't read them yet? You need to start. Now. And in spots three and four a resurgence in sales brings the master, Raymond E. Feist back onto the list with the final Riftwar book while Mark Lawrence's hacks his way towards the number one spot with the final book in the Broken Empire Trilogy.

DREAMS OF GODS AND MONSTERS
By Laini Taylor

THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE
By Neil Gaiman
Click here for more details or to order

By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her - if there can even be a future for the chimaera in war-ravaged Eretz.

When Jael's brutal seraph army trespasses into the human world, the unthinkable becomes more...

Click here to order
Dreams of Gods and Monsters

Retail Price: $19.99
Booktopia Price: $15.95 SAVE 20%
Read more...

Click here for more details or to order

It began for our narrator forty years ago when the family lodger stole their car and committed suicide in it, stirring up ancient powers best left undisturbed. Dark creatures from beyond the world are on the loose, and it will take everything our narrator has just to stay alive. There is primal horror here, and menace unleashed - within his family and from more...
 

Click here to order
The Ocean at the End of the Lane

Retail Price: $17.99
Booktopia Price: $14.40 SAVE 20%
Read more...
MAGICIAN'S END
By Raymond E. Feist

EMPEROR OF THORNS
By Mark Lawrence
Click here for more details or to order

The dragons are calling...Civil war is tearing apart the Kingdom of the Isles, for the throne lies empty and rivals are converging. Having spirited his beloved Princess Stephane safely out of Roldem, Hal - now Duke of Crydee - must turn his attention to the defence of the ancient realm so that a king can be anointed by the Congress of Lords, rather than by right of might. But the greatest threat may more...

Click here to order Magician's End
Retail Price: $17.99
Booktopia Price: $14.40 SAVE 20%
Read more...

Click here for more details or to order

The path to the throne is broken - only the broken can walk it The world is cracked and time has run through, leaving us clutching at the end days. These are the days that have waited for us all our lives. These are my days. I will stand before the Hundred and they will listen. I will take the throne no matter who stands against me, living or dead, and if I must be the last emperor then I will more...

Click here to order
Emperor of Thorns

Retail Price: $17.99
Booktopia Price: $14.40 SAVE 20%
Read more...
WHAT I'VE BEEN READING
What I've Just Read: Great North Road by Peter F. Hamilton. Alas my Hamilton binge has come to an end, I now have to wait until October for his next SF epic. This near-future murder mystery is a thrilling page-turner whose pace never lags - despite it's gigantic size!  

What I'm Reading Now: I am in reading heaven at the moment. I've gotten my hands on The Pillars of Sand, the third book in the debut trilogy by aussie Mark T. Barnes. This series, this author, is amazing and I think one of the most significant pieces of work to come out of our local talent in the last twelve months - and one of the most exciting. I haven't finished this book and already I can't wait to see what he does next.

What I'm Reading Next: Next I am going to dive in to David Webber's Safehold series. I know, I know. I have to finish the Honor Harrington series yet, but I have a hankering to give Off Armageddon Reef a go - and it's a massive Space Opera too so what's not to love? (Although I think I need to start looking for some shorter books...)
FANTASY
Click here for more details or to order THIEVES' QUARRY
By D. B. Jackson


Mark says: D. B. Jackson has a very special talent and with it he has woven fantasy and history to create a pre-Revolutionary Boston that 'could have been'. Filled with both conjurers and revolutionaries Jackson ups the ante by building this story around a mystery that would give Sherlock Holmes pause (well momentarily anyway).

This is a wonderfully intricate tale of a complex, tortured hero and a world on the brink of war. And while this is the second book in the Thieftaker Chronicles it isn't necessary to read Thieftaker first, as Jackson manages to explain backstory without boring those who have read the first novel - though as a champion of reading a series in order I recommend it. You can find Thieftaker here.

Blurb: Ethan Kaille isn't the likeliest hero. A former sailor with a troubled past, Ethan is a thieftaker, using conjuring skills to hunt down those who steal from the good citizens of Boston. And while chasing down miscreants in 1768 makes his life a perilous one, the simmering political tensions between loyalists like himself and rabble-rousing revolutionaries like Samuel Adams and others of his ilk are perhaps even more dangerous to his health.

When one hundred sailors of King George III's Royal Navy are mysteriously killed on a ship in Boston Harbor, Ethan is thrust into dire peril. For he-and not Boston's premier thieftaker, Sephira Pryce-is asked to find the truth behind their deaths. City Sheriff Edmund Greenleaf suspects conjuring was used in the dastardly crime, and even Pryce knows that Ethan is better equipped to more...

Click here to order Thieves' Quarry
Retail Price: $17.99
Booktopia Price: $10.50 SAVE 42%
Read more...
Click here for more details or to order DEMON CHILD
By Kylie Chan


Mark says: The second book in the Celestial Battle is just a few days away from release now and sure to race off the shelves. Kylie Chan has established herself at the forefront of Australian genre fiction with her effortless ability to bring Chinese mythology and philosophy to the Western mindset, and paired it with a talent for writing gripping stories peopled with larger than life characters.

In a nutshell Chan's books are like reading a supernatural, martial arts big-budget Hollywood movie. They are all fun with more twists and turns than a good luck dragon.

If you are new to her work be sure to start here.

Blurb: Emma Donahoe has faced down threats to her loved ones and never given up the fight. But as the demons close in, she faces a new danger - John's love for her could lead to her complete annihilation.

As battles rage for control of Heaven and Earth, she must fight her own war to retain her independence as her identity is absorbed into the man she loves.

Click here to order Demon Child
Retail Price: $29.99
Booktopia Price: $23.95 SAVE 20%
Read more...
Click here for more details or to order PRINCE OF FOOLS
By Mark Lawrence


Mark says: So, by now you may have heard me wax lyrical (or try to ) about Mark Lawrence. You could even go so far as to say I am crushing on his authorial brilliance. And that would be very true. Lawrence has a very vivid style of writing. It is smooth and compelling, he says much while actually writing (compared to the mammoth tomes I usually read) very little.

This is the first book in a new series set within the same world as his Broken Empire trilogy. Yet for all that, while the stage is the same the story - and character of Jalan Kendeth - is very different to that of the Prince of Thorns and Jorg Ancrath. And that's a good thing. Who wants to read the same thing all the time? However, beware, it is very different. Until it twists and turns on the pages right before your eyes and... but I don't want to give to much away. You're going to have to read it.

In three books Mark Lawrence has positioned himself as a rising star amongst the new writers of the genre. And I urge you to get on board now.

Blurb: The Red Queen is old but the kings of the Broken Empire fear her as they fear no other. Her grandson Jalan Kendeth is a coward, a cheat and a womaniser; and tenth in line to the throne. While his grandmother shapes the destiny of millions, Prince Jalan pursues his debauched pleasures. Until he gets entangled with Snorri ver Snagason, a huge Norse axe man, and more...

Click here to order Prince of Fools
Retail Price: $27.99
Booktopia Price: $22.40 SAVE 20%
Read more...
Click here for more details or to order SHATTERED
By Kevin Hearne


Mark says: I can't not talk about the new book from the author who embodies the best of Jim Butcher and Neil Gaiman and makes it his own.

Shattered is the seventh book in the Iron Druid Chronicles, and while it is a little bit of a rest pause and possibly a good place to jump in, I do suggest you start with Hounded first.

Hearne is an engaging writer who understands that magic has a price, the supernatural needs to deliver a sense of mythic wonder and that fast-paced action and humour packs a powerful punch when delivered right. And Hearne has a killer right hook.

Blurb: For nearly two thousand years, there was only one Druid left walking the Earth - Atticus O'Sullivan, the Iron Druid, whose sharp wit and sharp sword kept him alive while pursued by a pantheon of hostile deities. Now he's got company. Atticus's apprentice Granuaile is finally a full Druid herself. What's more, Atticus has defrosted an archdruid long ago frozen in time, a father figure (of sorts) who now goes by the modern name Owen Kennedy. And Owen has some catching up to do. Atticus takes pleasure in the role reversal, as the student is now more...

 
Click here to order Shattered
Retail Price: $19.99
Booktopia Price: $15.95 SAVE 20%
Read more...
SCIENCE FICTION
Click here for more details or to order CIBOLA BURNS
By James S.A. Corey


Blurb: ENTER A NEW FRONTIER.

"An empty apartment, a missing family, that's creepy. But this is like finding a military base with no one on it. Fighters and tanks idling on the runway with no drivers. This is bad juju. Something wrong happened here. What you should do is tell everyone to leave."

The gates have opened the way to a thousand new worlds and the rush to colonise has begun. Settlers looking for a new life stream out from humanity's home planets. Ilus, the first human colony on this vast new frontier, is being born in blood and fire.

Independent settlers stand against the overwhelming power of a corporate colony ship with only their determination, courage, and the skills learned in the long wars of home. Innocent scientists are slaughtered as they try to survey a new and alien world. The struggle on Ilus threatens to spread all the way back to Earth.

James Holden and the crew of his one small ship are sent to make peace in the midst of war and sense in the midst of chaos. But the more he looks at it, the more Holden thinks the mission was meant to fail.

And the whispers of a dead man remind him that the great galactic civilisation that once stood on this land is gone. And that something killed it.

Click here to order Cibola Burns
Retail Price: $29.99
Booktopia Price: $23.95 SAVE 20%
Read more...
Click here for more details or to order THE DARK BETWEEN THE STARS
By Kevin J. Anderson


Mark says: This month Kevin J Anderson returns to the universe of his epic Saga of the Seven Suns with the first book in a new trilogy that fans have been waiting patiently (most of the time) for.

Blurb: Twenty years after the elemental conflict that nearly tore apart the cosmos in The Saga of Seven Suns, a new threat emerges from the darkness. The human race must set aside its own inner conflicts to rebuild their alliance with the Ildiran Empire for the survival of the galaxy.

In Kevin J. Anderson's The Dark Between the Stars, galactic empires clash, elemental beings devastate whole planetary systems, and factions of humanity are pitted against each other. Heroes rise and enemies make their last stands in the climax of an epic tale seven years in the making.


Click here to order The Dark Between The Stars
Retail Price: $29.99
Booktopia Price: $23.95 SAVE 20%
Read more...
Click here for more details or to order THE LONG MARS
By Terry Pratchett, Stephen Baxter


Mark says: From the combined talents of the UK's bestselling novelist and a giant of British science fiction comes the dazzling new chapter in the extraordinary and bestselling The Long Earth sequence.

Blurb:2040-2045: In the years after the cataclysmic Yellowstone eruption there is massive economic dislocation as populations flee Datum Earth to myriad Long Earth worlds.

Sally, Joshua, and Lobsang are all involved in this perilous work when, out of the blue, Sally is contacted by her long-vanished father and inventor of the original Stepper device, Willis Linsay. He tells her he is planning a fantastic voyage across the Long Mars and wants her to accompany him. But Sally soon learns that Willis has ulterior motives ...

Meanwhile US Navy Commander Maggie Kauffman has embarked on an incredible journey of her own, leading an expedition to the outer limits of the far Long Earth.

For Joshua, the crisis he faces is much closer to home. He becomes embroiled in the plight of the Next: the super-bright post-humans who are beginning to emerge from their 'long childhood' in the community called Happy Landings, located deep in the Long Earth. Ignorance and fear are causing 'normal' human society to turn against the Next - and a dramatic showdown seems inevitable...


Click here to order The Long Mars
Retail Price: $32.99
Booktopia Price: $26.40 SAVE 20%
Read more...
JIM BUTCHER ANSWERS TEN TERRIFYING QUESTIONS
Click here to go to Jim Butcher's Author Page 1. To begin with why don't you tell us a little bit about yourself - where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I was born, raised and schooled in Independence, Missouri, USA.  My dad worked in a steel mill and my mom sold real estate, and I went to public school.  After winning a National Merit Scholarship to the University of Oklahoma, I went down there for my college education, which is where I (eventually) learned about the craft of storytelling.


2. What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?

At 12, a singer, because I liked music.  Around 18 I thought I'd go into computer programming because that was where the video games lived, but by the time I was 19 I had realized how tedious that kind of job would be for me.  From there on, I wanted to be a writer, and that's all I wanted to be.


3. What strongly held belief did you have at eighteen that you do not have now?

I can't think of any.  Time is what tells you whether a belief is strongly held or not.  If your beliefs go changing all willy nilly, they weren't strongly held in the first place. 


4. What were three works of art - book or painting or piece of music, etc - you can now say, had a great effect on you and influenced your own development as a writer?

Star Wars
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
The Lord of the Rings


5. Considering the innumerable artistic avenues open to you, why did you choose to write a novel?

My parents disapproved of the idea of me going into acting, I didn't have the pipes to be a truly good vocalist, and I can't draw a stick figure without needing to erase and start over.  My poetry is hideous to a nigh-Vogon degree. 

That pretty much left writing.


Click here for more details or to order6. Please tell us about your latest novel 'Skin Games'

It's a slang phrase that means a con or hustle.

After successfully completing his first mission for Queen Mab, Harry Dresden gets handed another job.  This time, he is tasked to assist Nicodemus Archleone and a crew of bad characters in a smash-and-grab job on a bank vault--a vault belonging to Hades, Lord of the Underworld.  Dresden knows that Nicodemus is going to turn on him at some point, and his life suddenly becomes all about discovering who can manage the superior level of treachery.


7. What do you hope people take away with them after reading your work?

A desire to read more of it.


8. Whom do you most admire in the realm of writing and why?

There are a lot of ways to answer this question, but I'm going to go with Lois McMaster Bujold.  I think Lois is one of the most skilled storytellers alive right now.  Her work blends character, plot, and story world into a seamless whole, and does it so naturally and smoothly that you can't see it happening.
Professionally speaking, I want to have her babies.


9. Many artists set themselves very ambitious goals. What are yours?

Click here for more details or to order For a long time, my goal was to have so many books on the shelf at my local chain bookstore that I could hold up a yardstick to the shelf and have my titles spill off either end.  But I aimed too low and got to that goal in 2009 or so.  Honestly, I'm not really sure where to go from here--which is the luckiest and most amazing problem any writer could ask for.


10. What advice do you give aspiring writers?

Write every day.  Read every day.  Concentrate on learning the craft of telling a story.  It doesn't matter what kind of soul your work has, or what kind of voice it possesses if you can't get readers to keep turning those pages.

I wrote a series of primer articles for aspiring writers who want to start learning the basics of storycraft.  You can find them at jimbutcher.livejournal.com.
PLEASE NOTE
Prices displayed in this newsletter are correct at time of publication. Website prices are subject to change at short notice. In these circumstances, the price listed in the newsletter may not be correct. In the event that a price conflict between the newsletter and website does occur, website prices will override prices listed in the newsletter.
   
Booktopia.com.au
Archives
In This Issue

Book of the Month

Bestsellers

What I've Been Reading

Fantasy

Science Fiction

Ten Terrifying Questions

BESTSELLERS
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
EBOOK BESTSELLERS
Click here for more details or to buy
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
AUDIO BOOK BESTSELLERS
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
FANTASY

Click here for more details or to order





SCIENCE FICTION
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
Click here for more details or to order
WARHAMMER 40K

Click here for more details or to order


WARHAMMER
Click here for more details or to order