Archive for Angry Robot

Feb
26

Ferrett Steinmetz: Touching A Dream

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Behind every new book published is, not only a happy publisher but also, a delighted author. Some journeys to publication are longer than others, but no matter how long it takes the result is still the same: physical proof of what was once an idea, formed, created, and worked on, probably over and over again. As Ferrett Steinmetz approaches publication day (3 March) for his debut novel, Flex, yesterday Ferrett realised a dream: author copies of his very own book arrived. The wonderful moment was captured on video, but I do warn you…it has been known to induce some tears. Congratulations, Ferrett!

Ferrett has also written about this moment over on his blog: A Thing I Have Waited For, Literally, All My Life.

Categories : Angry Robot, AR Authors
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We are thrilled to introduce you to both Matt Hill and his gritty new novel, Graft. Acquired from Sam Copeland at Rogers, Coleridge and White Literary Agency, Graft – scheduled for early 2016 release – is an exciting novel brought to you from the runner-up in the 2012 Dundee International Book Prize.

Matt Hill small bwMatt Hill: “I’m chuffed to bits that Graft has found a home at Angry Robot. They’ve published loads of amazingly written, brilliantly designed books, and I can’t wait to start working with the team.”

Matt Hill was born in 1984 and grew up in Tameside, Greater Manchester. After completing a journalism degree at Cardiff University, he trained as a copywriter. He now lives and works in London. His first novel, The Folded Man, was runner-up in the 2012 Dundee International Book Prize. Welcome Matt to the Angry Robot family on Twitter, and be sure to visit his site: http://matthewhillswebsite.co.uk/

Phil Jourdan: “Sometimes you get sent a book that ticks every single box for you — plot, character, prose, mood, originality, sheer madness — and you just think, ‘Am I actually ready to take this on?’ Well, the good news is we’re ready. Graft is the perfect addition to Angry Robot’s catalogue: a truly unique science fiction book, dark and twisted but gorgeous all the way through.”

Graft

Under the Skin meets The Handmaids Tale meets The Fifth Elementwith extra limbs.

In Graft, the near future is bleak — especially in Manchester.

Local mechanic Sol steals old vehicles to meet the demand for spares. But when his partner impulsively jacks a luxury model, the structures of Sol’s life begin to warp. Hidden in the stolen car’s boot is a three-armed woman with a strange tattoo on her throat. She is Y: rootless, amnesiac, and scheduled for delivery. What she reveals not only forces Sol to confront his own past, but sends him to the threshold of reality – and asks him to cross it.

A novel about the horror of exploitation and the weight of love, Graft imagines a country in which too many people are only worth what’s on their price tag.

Praise for Matt Hill:

“[The Folded Man] captures the smell and essence of Britain through its main character, his desires, addictions and strange courage. Written with direct vividness that keeps one inside its totally realised world.” – Stephen Fry, Dundee International Book Prize judge 2012

“Some combination of Raymond Chandler, Trainspotting, and Philip K. Dick, Hill’s unsettling novel [The Folded Man] is not an escapist fantasy, but rather a call to arms, a plea to change the future.” – Publishers Weekly

“[The Folded Man is] a memorable debut with pathos, dark humour and true heart.” – Interzone

The Folded Man, with its well realised fictional world and its oddly captivating, all too human protagonist, is a very promising debut indeed.” – The Skinny

“Some scenes [in The Folded Man] are so brilliantly dark, perverse and engaging that your skin tingles with excitement . . . Matt Hill is one to watch out for.” – The List

“Reads like Coetzee with ADHD . . . [The Folded Man is] a stunning debut.” – Litro

 

Categories : Angry Robot, News
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Hello, Robot Readers!

Yesterday, Angry Robot Consulting Editor Phil Jourdan and myself took to the wilds of Twitter to join in #MSWL, a recurring Twitter bonanza where editors, agents, and publishing professionals tweet their Wish-List – the kinds of books and stories they’d love to see in their submissions. Our Fearless Leader Marc Gascoigne sent me his wish-list as well, to convey while he worked on the calibrating the Orbital Book Distribution Laser Grid.

If you’re a writer looking for a place to send your book, or a reader interested in knowing what your friendly Angry Robots are looking for next to consider for the list, wait no longer! Take a gander at the list below and be inspired.

Angry Robot is not currently accepting unagented submissions, but if you have a story that fits our wish-list, keep an eye out for our next Open Door Period and you may have your chance.

Categories : Angry Robot, Submissions
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From Forbidden Planet’s website:

PETER NEWMAN and EMMA NEWMAN will be signing at the Forbidden Planet Bristol Megastore on Thursday 30th April from 6 – 7pm!

In Peter’s debut novel, THE VAGRANT, years have passed since humanities destruction emerged from the Breach. The world and its inhabitants have been changed from what they once were. Friendless and alone he walks across a desolate, war-torn landscape. As each day passes the world tumbles further into depravity, bent and twisted by the new order, corrupted by the Usurper, the enemy, and his infernal horde.

Emma’s BETWEEN TWO THORNS was shortlisted for the BFS and Best Newcomer awards. And something is wrong in Aquae Sulis, Bath’s secret mirror city. The new season is starting and the Master of Ceremonies is missing. A rebellious woman trying to escape her family may prove to be the answer to the mystery. But can she be trusted? And why does she want to give up eternal youth and the life of privilege she’s been born into?

Together, Emma and Peter co-write the Hugo-nominated podcast ‘Tea and Jeopardy'; Peter also voices the butler, Latimer, and Emma handles the interview and audio production. The podcast features interviews with creative people alongside tea, cake, mild peril and singing chickens

Categories : Angry Robot, AR Authors
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We are delighted to announce our latest robot recruit in Adam Rakunas with his debut novel, Windswept. Acquired from Sam Morgan at JABberwocky Literary Agency, Windswept is the first in a two-book deal and will be released in September 2015. The as-yet-untitled sequel will follow in 2016.

Windswept stars Padma Mehta, a long-time labor organizer who is on the verge of making the deal of her life when it all falls apart. Now, she has to rely on the neighbourhood scam artist and a handful of stowaways to save her city, her planet, and Occupied Space — all before Happy Hour. With a host of well-crafted characters, Windswept is part detective story, part space operetta with snappy dialogue, futuristic adventure, and plenty of comedic timing.

AdamNewZealandAuthorPhotoAdam Rakunas: “I’m stoked to join the assimilated masses at Angry Robot, especially after I was informed that the process no longer hurt as much as before. Some of my favorite books and authors have come from the digital mines of AR, and I’m honored that my little book about sex, violence, and labor relations will join them.”

Phil Jourdan: “I was only a few pages into Windswept before I knew we had to take it on. Adam Rakunas has created one of the best ass-kicking protagonists around. He has mixed space travel with union politics and a deadly plague without ever sacrificing character and human warmth. He’s also annoyingly good at one-liners.”

Adam Rakunas has worked a variety of weird jobs. He’s been a virtual world developer, a parking lot attendant, a triathlon race director, a fast food cashier, and an online marketing consultant. Now a stay-at-home dad, Adam splits his non-parenting time between writing, playing the cello, and political rabble-rousing. His stories have appeared in Futurismic and the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. Windswept is his first novel.

Fun fact: Adam was the bartender for Angry Robot’s legendary robot-stuffed launch party back in 2009 at the Montreal WorldCon! Adam has been a member of our Robot Army for many years and it is extra special to celebrate this ladder-climbing step.

Join us in congratulating Adam; you can reach him online:

Twitter: @rakdaddy
Facebook: Adam Rakunas Books
Tumblr: rakdaddy
Website: Giro.org

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It’s all go at Angry Robot HQ as we gear up for March and our publishing reboot. We’re following yesterday’s cover reveal for Craig Cormick‘s The Floating City with the cover for the first in Susan Murray‘s intriguing medieval fantasy series, The Waterborne Blade (May 2015). If you’re a fan of Trudi Canavan, Karen Miller and Gail Z Martin, this epic fantasy title is for you, and you won’t have long to wait for the sequel as The Waterborne Exile follows in August of this year.

With a hat tip to Paul Young at Artist Partners for this fantastic cover, we present The Waterborne Blade (click to enlarge):

TheWaterborneBlade-144dpi

 

The Waterborne Blade

The citadel has long been the stronghold of Highkell. All that is about to change because the traitor, Vasic, is marching on the capital. Against her better judgement, Queen Alwenna allows herself to be spirited away by one of the Crown’s most trusted servants, safe from the clutches of the throne’s would-be usurper.

Fleeing across country, she quickly comes to learn that her pampered existence has ill-equipped her for survival away from the comforts of the court. Alwenna must toughen up, and fast, if she is even to make it to a place of safety. But she has an even loftier aim – for after dreaming of her husband’s impending death, Alwenna knows she must turn around and head back to Highkell to save the land she loves, and the husband who adores her, or die in the attempt.

But Vasic the traitor is waiting. And this was all just as he planned.

Categories : Angry Robot, Books, Cover Art
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Danielle E. Jensen‘s Stolen Songbird was one of our best-selling and most critically-acclaimed titles of 2014. So now we’re beyond thrilled to share the cover for Hidden Huntress, the second book in The Malediction Trilogy.

Warm up your Feels Capacitors and prepare for awesomeness:

 

 

 

 

HiddenHuntress-144dpi

 

 

Wow, right? Steve Stone at Artist Partners has outdone himself.

 

Here’s the cover copy for Hidden Huntress, coming June 2nd, 2015 in the US/CAN and ebook, June 4th in the UK:

 

Sometimes, one must accomplish the impossible.

Beneath the mountain, the king’s reign of tyranny is absolute; the one troll with the capacity to challenge him is imprisoned for treason. Cécile has escaped the darkness of Trollus, but she learns all too quickly that she is not beyond the reach of the king’s power. Or his manipulation.

Recovered from her injuries, she now lives with her mother in Trianon and graces the opera stage every night. But by day she searches for the witch who has eluded the trolls for five hundred years. Whether she succeeds or fails, the costs to those she cares about will be high.

To find Anushka, she must delve into magic that is both dark and deadly. But the witch is a clever creature. And Cécile might not just be the hunter. She might also be the hunted…

 

And here are the covers for Stolen Songbird and Hidden Huntress, side-by-side. You may want to borrow Cécile’s fan if you are overcome by awesomeness:

Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. JensenCover to Hidden Huntress by Danielle L. Jensen

 

If you want to get Hidden Huntress as soon as humanly possible, I highly recommend pre-ordering at your local bookstore or favorite ebook retailer through retail links here.

And if you’re feeling lucky, the fine folks at YA Midnight Reads are hosting a giveaway for several copies of Stolen Songbird.

Categories : Angry Robot
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2015 will be busy and exciting for Angry Robot as our publishing schedule is back under full steam in March, and we also still have some new authors to share with you. The first of these is Patrick S. Tomlinson with his debut novel, The Ark, acquired from Russell Galen of Scovil Galen Ghosh Literary Agency in a two-book deal with translation rights. Scheduled for November 2015, The Ark is a thrilling mystery set in deep space.

AURALBW-IMG_1134Patrick S. Tomlinson: “When my agent first told me I’d be working with an Angry Robot, I was skeptical. “Oh, no,” I said. “I’ve seen this movie and the whole human race gets eradicated.” But then I started to wonder why the robot was angry. And if it was angry, did that mean it had human emotions instead of cold, inflexible machine logic? If a robot can be angry, can it also learn to… love?

Oh, and I wrote a book set on a generation ship called THE ARK. It contains many words. Some of them are even in the right order.”

 

Angry Robot’s Consulting Editor, Phil Jourdan: “What a pleasure it will be to unleash this blend of mystery, action and Really Big Spaceship madness on the world. The Ark has one of those great, mega-satisfying endings that will make readers squeal with delight a little bit. Be warned.”

The Ark

Sherlock Holmes meets 2001: A Space Odyssey

Humankind has escaped a dying Earth and set out to find a new home among the stars aboard an immense generation ship affectionately name the Ark. Bryan Benson is the Ark’s greatest living sports hero, enjoying retirement working as a detective in Avalon, his home module. The hours are good, the work is easy, and the perks can’t be beat.

But when a crewmember goes missing, Bryan is thrust into the center of an ever-expanding web of deception, secrets, and violence that overturns everything he knows about living on the Ark and threatens everyone aboard. As the last remnants of humanity hurtle towards their salvation, Bryan finds himself in a desperate race to unravel the conspiracy before a madman turns mankind’s home into its tomb.

About Patrick: Patrick S. Tomlinson is the son of an ex-hippie psychologist and an ex-cowboy electrician. He lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with a menagerie of houseplants in varying levels of health, a Ford Mustang, and a Triumph motorcycle bought specifically to embarrass and infuriate Harley riders. When not writing sci-fi and fantasy novels and short stories, Patrick is busy developing his other passion for performing stand-up comedy.

 Join us in offering Patrick a robotically warm welcome: @stealthygeek on Twitter, Facebook, and Patrick’s site, www.patrickstomlinson.com.

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The Bullet Catcher's Daughter by Rod DuncanWe’re absolutely delighted to start 2015 with some awards news. Rod Duncan’s superlative alternate history The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter has made the six-book shortlist for the Philip K Dick Award 2014.

When he’d come down from the ceiling, a joyous Rod Duncan said:

I had no idea that The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter was even in the running, so discovering it on the shortlist was a complete surprise. If you’ll excuse the British slang – I was gobsmacked! To be standing alongside such wonderful writers and to be up for an award bearing the name of Philip K. Dick – it is a great honour. I feel hugely grateful.

The award’s winner will be announced at Norweson in Seattle, USA on 3 April this year. Further details of that lovely shortlist – really, you should just buy all of them! – and everything else you need to know are on the Philip K Dick Award website. Rod’s sequel Unseemly Science is fast approaching too – it hits stores in May 2015, with a third novel in the Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire series, The Custodian of Marvels, due Spring 2016.

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We are delighted to announce that Kameron Hurley‘s The Mirror Empire has been sold to Talpress, the Czech publisher of George R. R. Martin, Terry Pratchett, Steven Erickson, and Brandon Sanderson, amongst others.

Kameron’s gripping and ambitious novel has delighted readers since its September release, and we are thrilled that more readers will have the opportunity to read this epic fantasy tale. Publication is due for Spring 2016, and in the run-up to the London Book Fair, we hope to have more deals to announce in the near future.

Kameron Hurley’s reaction to the foreign rights deal: “I’m beyond pleased that The Mirror Empire will be reaching a wider audience in the capable hands of Talpress.”

Watkins Media’s Senior Rights Manager, Alex Thompson, had this to say: “I’m delighted that Talpress bought the Czech rights for The Mirror Empire so quickly – we’re looking forward to selling it in many more languages so that this fabulous book gets the global readership it deserves! The Watkins Rights team have been enjoying letting out their inner sci-fi geeks and reading through the AR backlist, and we can’t wait to start selling lots more foreign rights.”

For further rights enquiries to The Mirror Empire, or other Angry Robot titles, please contact Alex at alext@dbp.co.uk.

 

 

 

Dec
23

12 Days of Christmas: Craig Cormick

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Craig Cormick‘s The Shadow Master is today’s offering in our 12 Days of Christmas promotion; to avail of this festive £1 – or currency equivalent – offer, follow these  simple instructions:

1. Visit the Robot Trading Company at www.robottradingcompany.com
2. Add the book(s) you’d like to buy to your shopping basket
3. Add the magic word ‘mincepie’ to the ‘coupon/voucher’ box
4. Click the ‘update basket’ button and the discount will be applied
Dec
21

12 Days of Christmas: Tim Waggoner

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We hope you’ve been enjoying our 12 Days of Christmas, and all the bargains So far, our 12 Days of Christmas ebook promo has gifted you bargain copies of books from Andy RemicJustin GustainisJoseph D’Lacey and Matthew HughesFreya Robertson and Anna KashinaMichael BoatmanDanielle L. JensenJay Posey, and Marianne de Pierres. You can still get these titles at the bargain price by following the instructions below.

Today is the turn of Tim Waggoner and the first book in his Shadow Watch series, Night Terrors.

Here’s how to take advantage of our £1 seasonal special offer:

1. Visit the Robot Trading Company at www.robottradingcompany.com
2. Add the book(s) you’d like to buy to your shopping basket
3. Add the magic word ‘mincepie’ to the ‘coupon/voucher’ box
4. Click the ‘update basket’ button and the discount will be applied
Festive bonus from Tim Waggoner:

The Lie of “Santa Claus”

Santa Claus, Father Christmas, St. Nicholas, Kris Kringle, Père Noël – whatever you call him, you must understand one very important thing: he’s not who you think he is. He’s not what you think he is. He’s not the jolly benefactor of humankind, a symbol of joy, love, and light, harbinger of a season of peace and goodwill. Oh, no. He’s something else altogether

I can’t tell you who created the lie of “Santa Claus” and why. Maybe people, deep down, sense the reality, and they invented the story of the philanthropic present-giver in order to hide the truth from themselves. Or maybe “Santa” has agents all around the world, human traitors who for whatever reasons help to spread the lie. They stand on street corners dressed as him, ringing bells, collecting for charity, wishing all who pass a Merry Christmas. They pose for pictures with small children, ask if they’ve been a good boy or girl that year, have them speak of what they’d like Santa to bring them, then give them candy canes and send them on their way.

So loving, so giving, so kind . . .

All lies.

Here is the truth.

He dwells far from the haunts of humankind, in the frozen climes of the North, where ceaseless winds howl and perpetual ice storms can strip flesh from bone within moments. He travels by night – only night – moving through darkness with ease, as if born of it, ever silent, always unseen. He needs no sleigh and no reindeer to pull it. He has other ways of getting where he wants to go. Secret ways. Hidden paths. Dark roads.

Why Christmas Eve? It’s the one night of the year when parents’ guards are down. Holiday stress leads to holiday weariness, along with a few drinks to take the edge off. Mother and Father may not get much sleep that night, but they are bone-tired, and the sleep they do get is deep. They won’t hear him when he enters their house and makes his way upstairs. They never do.

He doesn’t visit every house on Earth in a single night. How could he? He manages a few hundred at most, but even that is miraculous when you think about it. He has twenty-four hours (remember, we’re talking about the entire planet here), and in that time he is able to traverse the globe, make his stops, and return to his ice-blasted domain before a single ray of light can touch him.

How does he choose which houses to visit? This is unclear. Perhaps he operates on some atavistic instinct which even he doesn’t understand. Or perhaps he carefully selects his destinations for the night. Children do write to him, you know. And perhaps those missives somehow find their way to his hands – hands which, despite all the illustrations depicting them as perfectly ordinary-looking, aren’t altogether human – and he reads them. And he chooses.

However he selects the children, he enters their homes without touching doors or windows or, despite the stories, a single chimney. Once inside, he moves past the tree, not pausing to admire how precisely the ornaments are placed, how lovingly the garlands are draped on its branches, how cheerily the lights twinkle. He doesn’t stop at the tree because there are already presents arranged beneath it, wrapped in colorful paper and tired with ribbons and adorned with bows. Mother and Father put those presents there, and they always have. In all his long years – even back in the days before the coming of the Christ child, when he had another name and a far different appearance – he has never left a single present at any home he’s visited. He comes not to give, but to take.

Sometimes children leave a snack for him, most often cookies and milk. He thinks of it as an offering, and while he appreciates the gesture, small as it is, he passes it by. He’s hungry, of course. He’s been hungry since humanity’s fur-covered forbears first descended from the trees. But he has a very specialized diet, and cookies and milk – while he could ingest them if he wished – simply do not satisfy.

He carries a sack – the stories are correct in this detail – and it’s full to bursting. Despite its size, it doesn’t weigh him down, and he moves quick and graceful as a cat as he makes his way to the children’s rooms. He’s not interested in adults. Never has been. To him, they’re nothing more than breeders, useful only because they create what he desires, what he loves, what he needs.

He enters the child’s room. The door is never locked. What child would lock his or her door on Christmas Eve? Once inside, he glides across the floor to stand at the bedside. He gazes down at the child, sometimes for a few moments, sometimes longer. And then he sets his pack on the floor, loosens the drawstrings, and reaches one of his not-quite-human hands inside. He withdraws a globular mass that fits easily in the palm of his hand, and he pulls back the child’s covers and places the viscous thing on the sheet next to the sleeping boy or girl. The instant he pulls his hand away, the mass begins to change. By morning it will have reshaped itself until it resembles the child in every detail. It will look, walk, talk, and behave like the child in all particulars, fooling everyone. And it will continue to do so until the day – perhaps not so very far in the future – when its true nature will assert itself and then it will do something terrible, something unimaginable.

Santa always smiles with the larger of his two mouths when he thinks of this.

He then lifts the sleeping child from the bed and pulls him or her close to his chest and holds them tight. So very, very tight. It doesn’t take long. And when they are gone, with no sign left to indicate they ever existed at all, he bends down, pulls the drawstrings on his pack closed, lifts it onto his shoulder once more – his burden slightly lighter now – and he departs, making his way out of the house the same way he entered.

And when the night is over at last and most of the world’s children – but not all – have been spared, he will return to his home of wind and ice, and he will sleep, full, but not sated. And the days and nights will pass as he slumbers, his appetite building for next year. And he will dream of all the children who now dwell within him, and he will hear their voices calling his name. Santa, please! Let us out!

And he shall sleep well.

Tim and his sister Lisa in 1968

Tim and his sister Lisa in 1968

Categories : Angry Robot
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We hope you’ve been enjoying our 12 Days of Christmas, and all the bargains So far, our 12 Days of Christmas ebook promo has gifted you bargain copies of books from Andy RemicJustin GustainisJoseph D’Lacey and Matthew Hughes, Freya Robertson and Anna Kashina, Michael BoatmanDanielle L. Jensen, and Jay Posey. You can still get these titles at the bargain price by following the instructions below.

Today, we are celebrating Marianne de Pierres and the first title in her Peacemaker series, Peacemaker.

Here’s how to take advantage of our £1 seasonal special offer:

1. Visit the Robot Trading Company at www.robottradingcompany.com
2. Add the book(s) you’d like to buy to your shopping basket
3. Add the magic word ‘mincepie’ to the ‘coupon/voucher’ box
4. Click the ‘update basket’ button and the discount will be applied

For today’s festive bonus, here’s a special memory from Marianne:

Christmas in the Australian Wheatbelt circa 1970’s

My mother loved to dance. Any opportunity, but particularly on holidays. Two weeks before Christmas she’d begin laying out wrapping paper and gifts and sticky tape and tinsel on the large bed in the spare room (my brother’s old room). It was the coolest room in the house, painted soft green, and with the benefit of high ceilings because summer was a blistering, unforgiving time in our part of the world.

Rose would click on the fan, crank up the record player (Bing or Dean and, occasionally, Frank), and dance around that room while playing the delicate game of fit the present to the person.

My contribution was to lie in the centre of the huge old King-sized bed, gifts scattered around me, and daydream. I still remember the flowery scent of Avon soaps, perfumes, and bubble baths – for indeed Avon did come to call in our little country town; the ribbon-festooned bottles of wine and odd naughty Irish liqueur; the mouth-watering biscuits in silvery pressed-tin boxes, the soft chiffon fripperies, satin pillowcases, and packets of salty celebration mixed nuts: pretzels and smoked almonds. Nothing expensive but each item as luxurious and exotic to me as Christmas itself. Each one of them, a mysterious tale.

She would sing, too, while she worked, in a deep, rich voice that never changed octave but brimmed full of life and fun. I’d turn my face into the pillows as her singing trailed off and she began to talk about the people she was giving presents to–recounting their lives and losses in short bursts of gratefulness and love.

Then dad would arrive and stamp dust off his boots outside the window, calling her to have a cup of tea. Hearing his voice, her face would light and I would feel…perfect.

Mum and Dad at Derdebin

Mum and Dad at Derdebin

Our 12 Days of Christmas bargains are off to a flying start with books from  Andy RemicJustin GustainisJoseph D’Lacey and Matthew HughesFreya Robertson and Anna Kashina, and Michael Boatman so far reduced. You can still get these titles at the bargain price by following the instructions below.

Today, we have Danielle L. Jensen‘s Stolen Songbird. This wonderful title was recently acquired by Angry Robot and we are very excited to bring this book to a new audience as well as preparing old and new fans for next year’s sequel, Hidden Huntress. Make sure you’re ready for Hidden Huntress‘ release and get your hands on Stolen Songbird now!

Here’s how to take advantage of our seasonal special offer:

1. Visit the Robot Trading Company at www.robottradingcompany.com
2. Add the book(s) you’d like to buy to your shopping basket
3. Add the magic word ‘mincepie’ to the ‘coupon/voucher’ box
4. Click the ‘update basket’ button and the discount will be applied
Festive bonus:

Danielle’s Favourite Christmas Moment

 

I’ve always envied people who seem to have a personal anecdote for every situation; those with memories – happy, sad, or humorous – sitting at the ready to entertain the listener at a moment’s notice. A strange jealousy for someone who makes a living spinning stories hundreds of pages long, but the truth, nonetheless. Sometimes I think it’s because I spend so much of my time thinking up imaginary things that I forget what has happened in my own life, or at the very least, my anecdotes have been squashed into a small corner where they rarely get much conscious thought. So needless to say, being asked to write about a memory (writing- or reading-related, of course) that is tied to a particular holiday is normally something that would have me scrambling.

But not this time.

Caroline sent me an email asking whether I could write a post about a Christmas memory, and I wrote her back immediately saying that I could. Because it just so happens that December 24, 2008 was the day that I confessed.

Those who’ve read the back cover of Stolen Songbird or encountered my bio on the Internet might recall that the first part of my adult life was spent in a career that could not be more different from writing fiction. Business school, then a job in corporate finance where I spent my days in a black suit talking about rating agencies, ratios, and spreads. But during those years, I developed a secret hobby. One that I told no one about.

Writing.

I typed away in my spare hours, closing the screen whenever anyone walked by, content to let them think what they would about my activities as long as they didn’t guess the truth. Until that fateful Christmas Eve, when, made bold by several glasses of wine, it all came out. The exchange went something like this:

Me: *takes big mouthful of wine* “So…I’ve been trying to write a book.”

Mom: *Sets glass down* “Really? What sort of book?”

Me: “A fantasy novel. Umm… Want to read what I have so far?”

Mom: *Contemplates what sort of alien has body-snatched her daughter* “Sure.”

An innocent enough exchange for most people; but for me, the moment I admitted that I’d undertaken a challenge no one thought me capable of completing was the moment I put my pride on the line – pride being the single greatest motivator in my arsenal (followed by obstinacy and a healthy dose of competitiveness). And after that, I was no longer trying to write a book – I would write one. And I did.

So Christmas Eve will always remind me of the day that I confessed, and in doing so, started down an incredible path from which I’ve never looked back.

Merry Christmas!

Danielle

Categories : Angry Robot
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Dec
17

12 Days of Christmas: Michael Boatman

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We hope you’ve been enjoying our 12 Days of Christmas, and all the bargains So far, our 12 Days of Christmas ebook promo has gifted you bargain copies of books from Andy RemicJustin GustainisJoseph D’Lacey and Matthew HughesFreya Robertson and Anna Kashina. You can still get these titles at the bargain price by following the instructions below.

For today’s bargain, step forward Hollywood actor and comedic writer, Michael Boatman with Last God Standing.

Here’s how to take advantage of our £1 seasonal special offer:

1. Visit the Robot Trading Company at www.robottradingcompany.com
2. Add the book(s) you’d like to buy to your shopping basket
3. Add the magic word ‘mincepie’ to the ‘coupon/voucher’ box
4. Click the ‘update basket’ button and the discount will be applied
Categories : Angry Robot
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