Updated 3rd June 2013 : Open - Please refer to our submission guidelines page for further information..
Solaris Books has collected James Maxey‘s critically-acclaimed Dragon Apocalypse trilogy in an eBook omnibus. The omnibus is now available in both the UK and US, and collects GREATSHADOW, HUSH, and WITCHBREAKER.
Here is the synopsis for book one…
The warrior known as Infidel (Princess Innocent Brightmoon, to a very, very few) is legendary – as much among the drunkards of Commonground as among heroes and bards – for her superhuman strength and skin tough as mail. Stagger, her long-time friend and closest companion, is a wastrel and a sot, but a gifted scholar. Sorrow, a powerful and possibly deranged witch, will stop at nothing – including mutilating her own body – in her pursuit of a fairer, more just world.
Once, dragons covered this world, warring with each other for dominance over great territories. In aeons past, however, their numbers dwindled, and the few that remained withdrew from mundane affairs, claiming the very primal forces of the world – fire, cold, storms, plants, the sun, wild beasts, even the principle of decay itself – as their own. Now the powerful Church of the Book has set its sights on destroying the primal dragons and freeing humanity of their supposed ‘tyrrany’ forever. Wearying of the mercenary life after Stagger’s death, Infidel – with an eye on the dragons’ celebrated wealth – agrees to take part in their first expedition.
But the primal dragons are not to be tackled lightly. In the most hectic, touching romp since The Princess Bride, Infidel, Stagger (or his ghost) and Sorrow will find their lives, and the world around them, changing beyond their grasp as the Church’s hubris reaps its rewards…
Here is but a fraction of what critics have been saying in praise of the Dragon Apocalypse series…
‘A magnificently entertaining romp bursting with charm.’ – SFX
‘It’s very rare to find a novel packed to the brim with heart-pumping action, laugh out loud humour, and a protagonist who wants cake. GREATSHADOW is a brilliant book… It has a great premise, great characters, great secondary world, great world-building, great pacing, great everything. This is pretty much a perfect book for me, because I loved everything about it, and hated nothing.’ – Founding Fields
‘GREATSHADOW was a fabulous read, which kept me turning pages and just finishing one more chapter before doing whatever I was supposed to do. Besides, any story that can legitimately clothe its main character in a chain mail bikini and make it functional can only be genius! If you like straight up adventure novels, kick ass heroines and dragons – lots of dragons – then you can’t miss GREATSHADOW. I know I’m already impatient for the second book in the series called HUSH.’ – Fantastical Librarian
‘GREATSHADOW is a clever, funny, goofy read… This isn’t your bog-standard intro quest: GREATSHADOW is a skip-to-the-back-of-the-book epic-level adventure … level 30+ adventure is charming, not po-faced, with a group of flawed, sarcastic, quick-witted and oddball adventurers that are equally comfortable with set-piece battle and rapid fire sarcasm.’ – Pornokitsch
‘… the most original and colorful fantasy world I have encountered in recent memory… Maxey has talent and just as importantly (and even more rare) is that he can generate truly novel ideas. As a sequel, HUSH expands upon the world introduced in the first book.’ – Elitist Book Reviews
‘There is a growing trend for fantasy novels to be grim, gritty and filled with knights who swear and monsters so evil that they take all the joy out of being scary and are simply nasty. Luckily, HUSH isn’t one of those books; it’s a fun, well-thought out fantasy romp which is packed with clever one-liners and plenty of action… Maxey proves that fantasy doesn’t have to be po-faced and serious in order to be fun, whilst at the same time tells a story with depth and emotion… intelligent fantasy that doesn’t waste it’s time trying to prove how smart it is… feeds the reader with plenty of fuel for the imagination whilst delivering on its promise of action and fun… it’s an exceptionally well done example of its genre, and a breath of fresh air for anyone sick of swords and sorcery stories covered in mud, blood and misery.’ – Starburst
Anne Lyle has been nominated in the Best Newcomer category in the recently announced shortlist for the 2013 British Fantasy Award. Anne receives this nomination in recognition for her excellent debut novel, THE ALCHEMIST OF SOULS, published by Angry Robot. THE ALCHEMIST OF SOULS is the first novel in Anne’s Night’s Masque trilogy, and is followed by THE MERCHANT OF DREAMS and THE PRINCE OF LIES - the latter is due for publication in November 2013.
Also nominated in the same category is E.C. Myers, whom we represent on behalf of our associate agency in New York, JABberwocky. Eugene’s debut novel FAIR COIN also scooped this year’s Andre Norton Award. FAIR COIN and its sequel QUANTUM COIN are published in the US by Pyr Books. UK rights are still available.
Huge congratulations to both Anne and Eugene!
This week saw publication of LIMITS OF POWER, the penultimate volume in Elizabeth Moon‘s Paladin’s Legacy, an epic fantasy series of elves, dragons and kingdoms under threat. The novel is published by Orbit in the UK. Here is the synopsis…
Magic will not be enough… The Lady of the elves has been slain and King Kieri injured by the iynisin, a corrupted race of elves whose poisonous touch means grisly death for all who stand in their way. As the Lady’s elves retreat to bury their dead, strange discoveries are made in the palace, revealing old secrets about the ancient alliance between humankind and elves. Meanwhile, in the kingdom of Tsaia, young Prince Camwyn begins to exhibit dangerous signs of magery. Discovery of magical blood so close to the king will put his brother’s rule in jeopardy, but he has nowhere to turn when even his own family might put him to death for treason.
Orbit have shared an excerpt of the novel on their website, so be sure to check that out if you are not yet (for shame!) familiar with the series. The novel has also received some excellent early reviews…
‘Moon’s fourth fantasy novel set in the Eight Kingdoms… is thoughtful and deeply character driven, full of personal crises as heartbreaking and hopeful as any dramatic invasion… Moon deftly avoids big literary explosions, preferring instead a slow boil that builds pressure without relief. There are plots within plots, but the complex story is never confusing. Fantasy fans will be delighted by this impressive foray.’ – Publishers Weekly
‘… it’s easy to become fully immersed in, and absorbed by, the narrative: Her great strength lies in the patient accumulation of telling detail, yielding an extraordinarily rich picture of the world’s politics, philosophy, military structure, history, magic and alien cultures, where men and women stand as equals even in force of arms.’ – Kirkus
LIMITS OF POWER was preceded by OATH OF FEALTY (2010), KINGS OF THE NORTH (2011), and ECHOES OF BETRAYAL (2012). The climactic final volume in the series, CROWN OF RENEWAL, is currently schedule for publication in May 2014.
Elizabeth Moon is represented by Zeno in the UK and Commonwealth, on behalf of Jabberwocky Literary Agency in New York.
For those out there who have been living under a rock for the past few years, the series follows the adventures of Peter Grant, a London police constable and apprentice wizard. The books were acquired for DAW by publisher Betsy Wollheim, in a deal negotiated by Joshua Bilmes at JABberwocky in New York, on behalf of Zeno.
The first title in this deal, BROKEN HOMES, is scheduled to be published in the United States in February 2014. Gollancz continue to publish inthe UK and Commonwealth.
Here is the synopsis…
A unique blend of police procedural, loving detail about the greatest character of all, London, and a dash of the supernatural.
In the new novel DC Peter Grant must head south of the river to the alien environs of Elephant and Castle. There’s a murderer abroad and, as always when Grant’s department are reluctantly called in by CID, there is more than a whiff of the supernatural in the darkness.
Joshua Bilmes, Myke Cole & Peter V. Brett at Balticon for Myke’s award
We are delighted to announce that Myke Cole‘s SHADOW OPS: CONTROL POINT has won the Compton Crook award! The award honours the best first SF/fantasy/horror novel of the year, and was presented at Balticon 47, this past weekend. The award was presented by 2012 Compton Crook winner, T.C. McCarthy, who is also represented by the JABberwocky Literary Agency.
Congratulations to Myke – a very well-deserved win!
SHADOW OPS: CONTROL POINT is published by Headline in the UK and Ace Books in the US. The sequel, FORTRESS FRONTIER is also available, through the same publishers. The third book in the series, BREACH ZONE, is due to be published in early 2014.
Sarah Ash‘s first three novels are now available as eBooks for the first time, through the JABberwocky eBook Program! The fan-favourites MOTHS TO A FLAME, SONGSPINNERS, and THE LOST CHILD have also received new artwork, by the talented Marcelle Natisin…
Here is the sysnopsis for MOTHS TO A FLAME…
Wondrous Myn-Dhiel, home to the dynasty of the House of Memizhon, a place of gothic-Byzantine riches and opulence – but now corrupt and subject to a king and queen, the Arkhan and his Arkhys, slowly going mad inside their labyrinthine palace.
But in this stagnant land nothing can shake the powers that be – until the arrival of two young slaves, twins Lai and Laili. Lai, the man of peace, must become a warrior, or die in the Arena; chaste Laili suffers as the Arkhan’s new concubine.
Forced into submission and betrayal of principle, they nevertheless survive. And, once enmeshed in the court and its machinery of power, they rise to new prominence.
But Myn-Dhiel must change… And as the power-playing of the court reaches fever pitch, a god-driven plague – complex, disguising itself as an irresistible drug – descends. Now Lai and Laili must realise their true fate – destroyers and redeemers both.
For these are the last days.
And this is the fall of the house of Memizhon.
I know, I know…. it’s been ages and ages and ages since we last opened for submission. Months. Maybe even a couple of years!
This has not been a plot or a conspiracy against authors – rather it’s simply down to manpower. We’re small agency – like REALLY small. We’re also a busy agency – like REALLY, REALLY busy! With only so many hours in the day, running the affairs of the incumbent client list has had to take precedence over actively extending it. We’re also kept well supplied with material from our associate agencies in the US.
It’s worth noting that most reading publishing professionals do takes place in their own time. It’d be great to spend our days loafing around on sofas reading about magic and robots, but it ain’t so, alas. That’s how we spend our evenings and weekends!
Stuff has, of course, slipped through the net, some of it we’ve even taken on (and sold!) - but anything that has come to our attention has done so via personal recommendation and serendipity. I’ve been to a number of conventions over the last few years – Worldcon, World Fantasy, Eastercon, Fantasycon, and one of the reasons I attend is to make myself available to writers even when we’re closed for formal approaches. This pays dividends for both agent and prospective client, so if there are conventions or gatherings you can get to where industry pros go, it can be worth your while making the effort. And they’re fun too!
We’re looking to open in mid-June (how long we’ll remain open we’ve yet to confirm). We’ll mainly be focussing on genre fiction – SF/F/H and all the permutations thereof – and mainly on the more commercial end. We’ll offer up further refined detail on our requirements in the coming days and weeks.
One super-important thing – please, please, please read our guidelines. Actually, let me say that a bit louder – READ OUR GUIDELINES!! This is not something we say because we’re being superior or over-fussy. Rather it’s to help you give your submission the very best chance of being considered properly. There’ll be a lot of competition for our attention during that open window. Subs that ignore the guidelines will not be as high on the priority list as those that follow them to the letter.
Brandon Sanderson‘s exciting new YA fantasy, THE RITHMATIST is published today by Orion Children’s. The books was released in the US last week, and hit the New York Times Bestseller list at #6! Fingers crossed for a similar reception over here in the UK!
Here’s the synopsis…
More than anything, Joel wants to be a Rithmatist. Chosen by the Master in a mysterious inception ceremony, Rithmatists have the power to infuse life into two-dimensional figures known as Chalklings. Rithmatists are humanity’s only defense against the Wild Chalklings—merciless creatures that leave mangled corpses in their wake. Having nearly overrun the territory of Nebrask, the Wild Chalklings now threaten all of the American Isles.
As the son of a lowly chalkmaker at Armedius Academy, Joel can only watch as Rithmatist students learn the magical art that he would do anything to practice. Then students start disappearing—kidnapped from their rooms at night, leaving trails of blood. Assigned to help the professor who is investigating the crimes, Joel and his friend Melody find themselves on the trail of an unexpected discovery, one that will change Rithmatics—and their world—forever.
Here’s what reviewers have been saying so far…
‘Featuring ingenious magic (complete with profuse chalk drawing–style diagrams and illustrations from McSweeney), feisty characters, and a complex plot likely to unwind over several volumes, this high-spirited, exciting story will appeal to readers of all ages.’ – Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
‘Fantasy readers should devour this well-crafted mix of action and setup, enriched by thoroughly detailed cultural and historical background and capped by a distinctly unsettling twist.’ – Kirkus (Starred Review)
‘The first novel in a brand new series from much-lauded adult fantasy author Brandon Sanderson, THE RITHMATIST is an imaginative, action-packed SFF adventure – entertaining, fun, and with oodles of future potential. In other words: get your chalk out, folks, because this is another good one from Brandon Sanderson. True to form, THE RITHMATIST‘s greatest strength lies with its wonderfully unique magical system. I will never tire or cease to be impressed by Sanderson’s imaginative applications and rules of magic-making…’ – The Book Smugglers - also hosted Brandon for an interview
‘The story is compelling and the main characters of Joel and Melody are ones that we can relate to — even their wishes, desires, hopes, and dreams ring true… While THE RITHMATIST is marketed for teen and young adults, I believe that it would be of interest to readers of all ages. Only the age of the main characters makes this a young adult story, for the problems and issues are germane to humans of all ages. Highly recommended.’ – SF Revu
THE PRINCE OF LIES is the third novel in Anne’s Night’s Masque trilogy, due to be published in October 2013. It follows THE ALCHEMIST OF SOULS and THE MERCHANT OF DREAMS – all three novels are published by Angry Robot Books. Here’s the synopsis for the third book…
Elizabethan spy Mal Catlyn has everything he ever wanted – his twin brother Sandy restored to health, his family estate reclaimed and a son to inherit it – but his work is far from over. The renegade skraylings, the guisers, are still plotting – their leader, Jathekkil, has reincarnated as the young Prince Henry Tudor. But while he is still young, Mal has a slim chance of eliminating his enemies whilst they are at their weakest.
With Sandy’s help, Mal learns to harness his own magic in the fight against the guisers, but it may be too late to save England. Schemes set in motion decades ago are at last coming to fruition, and the barrier between the dreamlands and the waking world is wearing thin…
Congratulations Aliette, on this much -deserved accolade!
We’re bowled over to see such fantastic support from the editorial team at Orbit Books for Ian Tregillis‘s superb Milkweed trilogy. Over on the Orbit Books blog, Editorial Assistant James Long has taken the time to write about how much the series blew him away…
‘As an editor, there’s no better feeling than reading a submission that blinds you with its sheer brilliance. It doesn’t happen often, but when it does it’s one of the most exciting things about working in publishing… [BITTER SEEDS] left amazed by its vivid prose, bold action sequences and the wonderful depth of its characterisation. Not to mention the underlying plot that regularly crosses into the realms of sheer genius.’
The whole UK editorial team at Orbit has, in fact, gone on record with their gushing praise for Ian’s series.
‘I love the way the plot threads around and twists back on itself, just when you think you’ve got it all worked out, both within the books and between them. Every new page gives you another thread to pull. The writing itself is phenomenal, but it’s the characters and the plot – my god, the plot! – that have got me so hooked. I can’t wait to read Necessary Evil and find out how Ian manages to resolve such a tangled web. Ian’s poor protagonists dance like puppets for the unbearably sinister Gretel, but there must be a master plan behind it all. I can’t believe she doesn’t have one – though I do hope poor Raybould foils it and that he finds the redemption he so desperately wants. He deserves a break after all he’s been through!’ — Anne Clark, Orbit Editorial Director, after reading THE COLDEST WAR
‘After having devoured the entire Milkweed Triptych at the speed of light, I can only conclude is that Ian Tregillis is an absolute genius. The Milkweed books are simply one of the cleverest, most engrossing series I’ve ever read. I often found myself chuckling out loud in public places at the pure brilliance of the plotting, the devious intellect of the protagonists, and the masterful skill of the author’s turn of phrase… Ian Tregillis takes an idea which is already hugely exciting in a very superhero-comic kind of way (mad warlocks fighting scientifically-enhanced Nazi übermensch), but then delivers the concept with such intelligence, such emotional power and such literary flair that you cannot help but fall head-over-heels for him as a writer.’ — Anna Gregson, Orbit Commissioning Editor
The Milkweed trilogy – BITTER SEEDS, THE COLDEST WAR and NECESSARY EVIL – is out now in the UK. If you haven’t tried it yet… well, get thee to a bookshop!
And if you have read this series, note that Orbit have another series in the pipeline from Ian. More on that in due course.
Maggie Furey‘s EXODUS OF THE XANDIM, the highly-anticipated sequel to HERITAGE OF THE XANDIM is published by Gollancz today. This brand new novel takes readers back into the history of her much loved Aurian fantasy world.
The Xandim novels are a perfect introduction to the richness and wonder of Aurian, and tell the story of the genesis of the Artefacts of Power, charting the epic struggle for freedom of a cursed people. Here’s the synopsis…
Return to the lands of Aurian.
Return to a time when even the land was a different shape. When the fabled Artefacts of Power were shaped. And when a race was fighting for freedom…
Corisand, shaman of the Xandim, is locked in a desperate fight to free her tribe from slavery, accompanied by her friend, the blind Wizard Iriana.
They have achieved the first step; the recovery of the powerful Fialan stone, but now the evil Magefolk are plotting a ruinous war, and the Archwizard Cyran wants to take the stone and use it as a weapon.
Will Corisand succeed in mastering the enigmatic Fialan before she and her people are swept up in a conflict that that will change the world for ever?
The Xandim are a people enslaved by the fey and powerful Phaerie, masters of the Old Magic. They were trapped in their horse forms for so long they forgot their human shapes, until their shaman, Windeye, found a way to rouse some of her people and bring them back to their humanity. But the quest to free the Xandim is not over. Indeed, the fight for freedom has only just begun.
Back in the mid-1990s, Maggie‘s debut novel, AURIAN, was nominated for three prestigious genre awards – the British Fantasy Award for Best Newcomer (which she won!), the Campbell Award and the LOCUS Award. Since then, she has gone on to publish eleven fantasy novels, each of which were warmly received and some are now considered beloved classics…
‘… a sweeping tale that has such likeable and rich characters, set in a world that is equally endowed with depth and history… Fresh, strong, unique and enjoyable [heroes]. We know who they are and enjoy their journeys immensely. Our heroine is probably one of the strongest and deepest that I’ve had the pleasure of reading… A very beautiful setting with a great history and little secrets to discover.’ — Fantasy Faction on AURIAN (Maggie’s debut)
‘AURIAN is a highly entertaining story that, with a boundless sense of “sky’s the limit” confidence, unapologetically runs the gamut from heroic high adventure to bodice-ripper… It may well be the greatest guilty pleasure the fantasy genre has produced in the last decade… Maggie Furey is an author who understands the magic in fulfilling a wish.’ — SFReviews.net
Winners will be announced at Mythcon 44, July 12-15th, 2013, in East Lansing, Michigan. Congratulations again to Tim, this is a well-deserved nomination, and we wish him the best of luck.
Last week, the 2013 LOCUS Awards Finalists were announced, and we’re delighted to report that Zeno clients have once again featured…
First up, the great Tim Powers, whose superb HIDE ME AMONG THE GRAVES (Morrow/Corvus) has been nominated in the ‘Best Fantasy Novel’ category. This complex novel – part Vampire story, part Secret History – has received a lot of deserved attention and praise, with the UK Independent describing it as ‘one of his best’ and the author as ‘one of dark fantasy’s major eccentrics’, who has ‘not mellowed or grown more ordinary with age’.
Here’s the synopsis…
London, 1862. A city of over three million souls, of stinking fog and dark, winding streets.
Through these streets walks the poet Christina Rossetti, haunted and tormented by the ghost of her uncle, John Polidori. Without him, she cannot write, but her relationship with him threatens to shake London itself to the ground.
This fascinating, clever novel vividly recreates the stews and slums of Victorian London – a city of dreadful delight. But it is the history of a hidden city, where nursery rhymes lead the adventurer through haunted tunnels and inverted spires. And where the price of poetic inspiration is blood.
At the beginning of last month, we put up a post about the recent Hugo Nominations, commenting that there is ‘just no stopping’ the exceptionally talented Aliette deBodard this year. Well, it seems she wasn’t quite done!!
Having already racked up a BSFA nomination, two Nebula Award nominations, and subsequently two Hugo Award nominations for her novella ON A RED STATION, DRIFTING and her short story “Immersion” (Clarkesworld 6/12), she’s only gone and done it again!
Both of these works are on LOCUS awards shortlist – in the Best Novella and Best Short Story categories, respectively. And let’s also not forget that The Guardian last month selected Aliette as one of their Best Young Novelists – from SF’s Universe. Aliette the Unstoppable!
Here is the synopsis for ON A RED STATION, DRIFTING…
For generations Prosper Station has thrived under the guidance of its Honoured Ancestress: born of a human womb, the station’s artificial intelligence has offered guidance and protection to its human relatives.
But war has come to the Dai Viet Empire. Prosper’s brightest minds have been called away to defend the Emperor; and a flood of disorientated refugees strain the station’s resources. As deprivations cause the station’s ordinary life to unravel, uncovering old grudges and tearing apart the decimated family, Station Mistress Quyen and the Honoured Ancestress struggle to keep their relatives united and safe. What Quyen does not know is that the Honoured Ancestress herself is faltering, her mind eaten away by a disease that seems to have no cure; and that the future of the station itself might hang in the balance…
Incidentally, there’s a nice connection between the two nominated authors. Back in 2007, Aliette was a Writers of the Future Award winner – one of her tutors there? A certain Tim Powers!
And – stop the presses! – news came in over the weekend that Aliette has been nominated again (twice!!) for the 2013 Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award for her short stories “Immersion” and “Scattered Along the River of Heaven“ (Clarkesworld 1/12)! The Sturgeon Award will be presented June 14, 2013, at the Campbell Conference, held at the Oread Hotel in Lawrence, Kansas, June 14-16, 2014. The award recognises exceptional work in short fiction field, and is awarded alongside the John W. Campbell Memorial Award.
Best of luck to both Tim and Aliette.
Zeno is very happy to announce a new deal for Myke Cole whose Operator books have been acquired by John Wordsworth at Headline – who have, of course, already published two of Myke’s Shadow Ops books to great acclaim – with a third due out later this year. These three new titles are set in the same reality.
The first of the new books will be GEMINI CELL, which is set be a prequel to Myke’s debut novel, CONTROL POINT…
Set in the early days of the Great Reawakening, GEMINI CELL witnesses the birth of the Supernatural Operations Corps out of covert unit dabbling in the occult. Caught in the middle is James Schweitzer, a US Navy SEAL who stumbles upon the secret and pays with his life. But SEALs are a breed apart, and death is only the first step on Schweitzer’s long road to vengeance, revelation and redemption.
The story, Myke says, takes place in ‘a lower magic, occult setting’, yet ’offers the same high octane modern military fantasy that readers of the original SHADOW OPS trilogy will love.’
John Wordsworth said of the deal ‘Myke is ridiculously talented and his writing just keep getting better. I’m thrilled to be working with him on the next three books,’
UK Audio rights went to W.F. Howes in a separate deal.
Myke Cole is represented in the UK and Commonwealth by the Zeno Agency on behalf of Joshua Bilmes of the JABberwocky Agency, Inc. in New York.