Archive for Angry Robot
Matthew will be chatting with Andy Sawyer (Librarian of the Science Fiction Foundation Collection at the University of Liverpool), as well as giving a short reading and signing books. The evening will last from 6:30PM – 8:30PM.
Andy wrote this superb review of both If Then and The Destructives for Strange Horizons, so we’re pretty sure both he and Matthew will have a lot to talk about. And we may be a bit biased but Matthew is an absolutely wonderful speaker, so if you’re in the vicinity – or anywhere the north side of London, in our opinion – you really should get yourself to the event.
Tickets are £2/£3 and there will be refreshments for all guests.
Here’s your handy map to the venue:
PHEW! It’s our second new signing of the week, and we couldn’t be more delighted to have another
meat shield valued member of the team.
We’re more than delighted to spread the news that Nik Korpon is joining the Angry Robot team with his new novel The Rebellion’s Last Traitor. You might know Nik from previous crime books such as Stay God, Sweet Angel and Old Ghosts. When we heard that Nik was making a move from hard crime to a more SFF bent we just had to have him, so had our finest team of crack cyborgs round both him and his wonderful family up and transport them to our base.
Here’s what he had to say about the deal:
“I’m so thrilled to finally be working with Angry Robot. What better place to publish a story about scrappy, upstart rebels than the feisty, upstart robots who have taken over the book world. Then again, my book is also about memory thieves, so maybe I’ve been here the whole time . . .”
Your Overlords are glad to have you, Nik. Now just lie back and brace yourself for the nanochip, there’s a good chap.
Head over to SFF World for the official announcement and a great blog post from Nik about the influences apparent in The Rebellion’s Last Traitor and making the move from writing crime into writing science fiction.
The Rebellion’s Last Traitor will be released in June 2017.
Hey guys! Push your eyes towards GoodReads – we’ve got two amazing book giveaways – hit the widgets below for a chance to win your favourite August release. Just click on the widgets below to enter each giveaway (location-based restrictions apply). Each book will hit shelves August 2 (US/Can) / August 4 (UK/R.o.W).
Do you enjoy epic fantasy adventures richly layered with culture, characters and politics? Then we offer you Foz Meadows‘s An Accident of Stars:
Perhaps you want to be pulled into a world filled with mystery and ancient spirits – if so, here is Keith Yatsuhashi‘s Kojiki:
Or maybe you want both – enter now!
Woooo! It’s new announcement time!
We’re overjoyed to report that the wonderful Wendy N Wagner has pledged fealty to the Robot Overlords. In even better news, Wendy was very compliant as our nanochip was inserted into her cerebral cortex and no serious, longterm damage was done.
Wendy’s An Oath of Dogs – think Chinatown meets Twin Peaks – will be out in July 2017.
Head over to the B&N Sci-Fi and Fantasy Blog to find out more about the book and hear a little bit from Wendy about writing her own novel, after writing within the Pathfinder universe.
Welcome Wendy, we’re so happy to have you onboard the orbital death star with us!
We’ve been waiting with baited breath for the new cover of Necrotech, K C Alexander’s hard hitting, take-no-prisoners new cyberpunk novel and we’re overjoyed to be able to share it with you now.
We absolutely love the depiction of kickass heroine Riko, created by the awesome Cody Tilson. You most definitely wouldn’t want to meet her down a dark alley. She’d take your stuff and kick you in the teeth for good measure.
Here’s the synopsis for Necrotech, which is due out Sept 1 (UK/R.o.W) / Sept 6 (US/Can):
Street thug Riko has some serious issues — memories wiped, reputation tanked, girlfriend turned into a tech-fueled zombie. And the only people who can help are the mercenaries who think she screwed them over.
In an apathetic society devoid of ethics or regulation, where fusing tech and flesh can mean a killing edge or a killer conversion, a massive conspiracy is unfolding that will alter the course of the human condition forever. With corporate meatheads on her ass and a necro-tech blight between her and salvation, Riko is going to have to fight meaner, work smarter, and push harder than she’s ever had to. And that’s just to make it through the day.
Just click on the teaser image below to visit the B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy blog who kindly helped us to reveal the cover. There’s also an EXCLUSIVE peek at the first chapter of the Necrotech for you to enjoy (be warned, there are swears).
We have a gorgeous new cover to show off! It’s for the second book in Megan E O’Keefe‘s Scorched Continent series: Break The Chains – continuing the capers of Detan and Tibs that we first saw in Steal the Sky.
We’ve been lucky enough to have Kim Sokol continue the series covers with this stunning and rather vertiginous illustration. You can feel the wind in your hair!
In keeping with her books’ lovable thief and scoundrel duo, Megan has written a blog about friendships in fantasy for you to enjoy and have fuzzy feels about. Our pals at the B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy blog have been kind enough to share it with the world.
Break The Chains comes out October 4 (US/Can) / October 6 (UK/RoW).
Click on the teaser below to be taken to the full lush cover and Megan’s excellent words. Can you see what they see?
Hello, and welcome to a special edition of Talk Tuesday to U.S, which celebrates Jen Williams‘ The Copper Promise finally hitting the shores of America (and Canada, too!). We’re really excited to be bringing this tale of kickass heroes, swords and sorcery to you guys.
With that in mind, we thought we’d ask Jen a few questions. So put your feet up, make yourself a cup of tea or pour a snifter of your favourite mead and have a read:
Spirited Away. It’s my go-to favourite film choice, because it’s beautiful, strange, and by the end of it I always feel happier than when I started watching it.
Impossible! ~falls to knees, shakes fists at giant Angry Robots~ The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle, because it’s sad and magical and funny, or We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson, because Merricat is one of my favourite unreliable narrators ever. OR Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones, because more castles. OR Lords and Ladies by Terry Pratchett. You can’t make me choose!
Whenever I have to do something a bit alarming or difficult, I usually think: ‘What would Commander Shepard do?’. Shepard, the bad-ass soldier who saves the galaxy repeatedly in the excellent video game Mass Effect, is brave and strong and has a one-liner for every situation. I try to be like her. Of course, the other evening I cut my finger a bit chopping up some bread and I nearly passed out twice, so I suspect I’m not really Commander Shepard material.
Ideal dinner party guests:
Brian Blessed, Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen, because they are all heroes of mine and I love that they’re also mates. If I can have fictional guests, I will take Nanny Ogg, Granny Weatherwax and Agnes Nitt. Imagine that party, huh?
Any notable pets?
We have a very small black and white cat called Pyra. When we got her, my partner and I argued about what to call her for about three days. Eventually, as I was just waking up from a nap on the sofa, Marty suggested we should call her Pirate. As a general fan of pirates, I agreed immediately, and went about merrily calling her Pirate for about a week before realising he’d actually said ‘Pyra’. Where that name came from, he doesn’t remember.
Got a nickname?
When I was at school, it was Niffer (a weird shortening of Jennifer). I have a more recent nickname, but it is far too rude to write down (ask me at the convention bar).
First story you told?
Brace yourselves, this is going to sound quite tragic. When I was very small and I lived with my nan and granddad, I used to ride my bike around the cul-de-sac on a continual circuit, with one of my stuffed toys rammed into the basket on the front. As I did that, I used to tellmy stuffed toy a story, made up on the spot as I went. I doubt they made much sense, but those were my first stories.
What do you say when people ask where you get your ideas from?
This usually goes about as well as when people ask me what my book is actually about. I will squint awkwardly into the distance, and mumble something about cheese and staying up too late. The truth is, there is no real answer to this question – we don’t know where they come from, and half the time we don’t recall exactly when it happened (it never happens when you really need it to, I know that much).
Do you have an unusual talent or skill?
I always know what time it is without having to look. Also, I am really eerily good at finding things – I’m continually retrieving my partner’s phone/glasses/watch from whichever strange resting place he has chosen for them.
Favourite building or structure?
My favourite building, easily, is the Natural History Museum in London. It is full of incredible and fascinating things, including dinosaur skeletons, weird things in jars, blue whales, a wicked gift shop and a really big bit of tree, but just the building itself is amazing. It’s gorgeous and operatic, a cathedral dedicated to nature, and it’s carved all over with hundreds of animals and plants – anywhere you happen to glance, you could be face to face with a monkey or a trilobite. I used to insist on a visit on my birthday every year, and I could never get tired of it.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you be?
I studied illustration at art college, so possibly an illustrator. Or, if I leap away from the boundaries of reality a bit, some sort of rock and roll paleontologist.
Ennui. Or pistachio.
Who plays you in the movie?
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.
And what’s the pivotal scene?
The moment my nan (played by Dame Judi Dench doing a London accent) turns to me, after I’ve spent four years training to be an illustrator at art college, and says, ‘Well personally I always thought you should be a writer.’
We’re buying, what’ll you have?
Two piece meal, please. With the coleslaw side.
Favourite item of clothing:
This changes a lot, but the one item I remain fond of is my huge, blue and grey striped old-school Arthur Dent dressing gown, purchased from the men’s section of Marks & Spencers. It is a PROPER dressing gown. Other than that, I would nominate my two new Star Wars t-shirts that I’m wearing to death currently.
What’s the view from your writing window?
Our small backyard, which is tiny and concretey, but very decent for sitting in and drinking cider. Every now and then a squirrel puts in a guest appearance.
Would you write full-time, if you could?
Absolutely! I almost do in a way, because I’m a copywriter in my day job, but if I had a chance to be writing novels all day every day, I’d be as happy as a wasp in jam.
Do you plan in detail of set of hopefully?
I write a rough plan then inevitably fail to follow it, which you could either describe as an instinctive and organic approach, or a deeply inefficient one. I have tried writing books all sorts of ways, and I have found that if I plan in too much detail, I lose my passion for telling the story – because in one way, I’ve already told it. I have also discovered, with trial and error and at least one unfinishedbook (it crashed and burned at around 60,000 words) that the ‘make it up as you go along’ method doesn’t work for me either. So these days I hang somewhere between the two, starting with a loose plan, lots of character notes and an idea of how everyone changes, and then I see where the story takes me. Usually, about halfway through the first draft, I write a new plan… which then also gets ignored. Inefficiency for the win!
Complete this sentence: rewriting is…
…The devil’s own backside, but entirely necessary and worthwhile. Sometimes, the feeling of just chucking out a whole paragraph or scene or even a chapter because you don’t really need it is the best and most liberating feeling. Having to endlessly redraft something because it’s not quite hitting the spot… is usually less fun.
Complete this sentence: I owe it all to…
…Chunky Peanut Butter Kit-Kats.
Tell us a secret
I eat too many Chunky Peanut Butter Kit-Kats.
Would you prefer to fight one giant mecha or ten duck sized cyborgs?
Do we have to fight? Can’t we be friends? I feel like I would instinctively get on quite well with duck cyborgs.
What’s your karaoke song?
I generally claim that I will have nothing to do with karaoke. However, certain people of my acquaintance will be able to attest that after around two glasses of wine, any Bon Jovi song is my karaoke song.
If you could ban one thing from the earth, what would it be?
Broccoli, it’s dreadful. And cauliflower too, while we’re at it.
Tipple of choice?
Mead for sipping, red wine for…uh, everything else. I once did an interview over the phone with a supermarket newspaper about my love for mead. That was a fairly surreal moment.
What are you going to do now you’ve finished this ordeal?
Drink a large glass of mead!
The Robots are out and about again, and this weekend we’re making an appearance at CONvergence in Bloomington, MN.
Come along and find us in the Dealer’s Hall, with a stall loaded up with amazing books. As well as selling our own titles we have some fine, fine novellas from Tor.com – a bonus if you like good books but don’t have too much time to wander around. Always thinking of you, see?
You may have seen rumblings that we were looking for a new editorial assistant to take over some of the day-to-day running of the orbital death platform – organising the puny meatbags for sacrifice, polishing our vast, gleaming control panel…you know, that kind of thing.
We set up a very cunning trap that involved a pulley system, cage, shiny things and some books and are delighted to announce that we managed to catch one. It’s this man here! ——->
His name is Nick Tyler and he starts with us TODAY. Here is a little more about him:
Nick is now too old to grow up and divides his time between consuming improbable quantities of speculative and fantastic fiction, compering and performing improvised comedy and stories (with MissImp, the Nottingham Improv Comedy Theatre group), writing assorted nonsense, photographing his kitten, and enjoying whisky, beer, Lego, and film. He has a background in dystopian bureaucracy, IT and system implementation which he is keen to forget about.
We demanded Nick say nice things about his appointment, which he spewed forth thusly: “My Happy Worker chip has been installed and its endorphin pulses tell me that I’m thrilled to be joining the Angry Robot team.”
Welcome, Nick! We can’t wait to
sacrifice start working with you!
Our lovely Adam Rakunas, author of Philip K. Dick Award-nominated Windswept and its just released sequel Like A Boss, is holding a reading/signing at 9PM on Wednesday 29 June at Mysterious Galaxy, San Diego.
Joining Adam will be Nebula, World Fantasy and John W. Campbell Award-winning author Ted Chiang.
Here’s more detail on the event:
io9 commented, “A linguist and a theoretical physicist are the stars of the latest movie from the director of Sicario and the upcoming Blade Runner 2. The movie is Story of Your Life, based on the short story by Ted Chiang, and this Amy Adams/Jeremy Renner movie looks awesome.”
Ted will be joined by Adam Rakunas, whose Like a Boss returns readers to the world of Windswept, last year’s Philip K. Dick nominated-title. Padma Mehta has realized her dream of owning a rum distillery, and believes she has retired from her labor organizer duties – until her nemesis is released from prison, and forms a cult. Thanks to the generosity of Adam’s publisher, Angry Robot, readers will also be treated to tacos from Taco Surf and beer from a local distillery.
Yeah, you heard that right, we’re sorting y’all out with tacos and beer. So that’s beer + tacos + TWO great authors. What are you waiting for?!
For more information, pop on over to the Facebook event page.
And here’s your handy map, just in case you need directions:
Pssst! You lot! We’ve got a bumper crop of giveaways over on GoodReads this month and we thought we’d give you a little heads up, so you can (hopefully) win a copy of your favourite July book! Just click on the widgets below to enter each giveaway (location-based restrictions apply). Each book will hit shelves July 5 (US/Can) / July 7 (UK/R.o.W).
Were you a big fan of the RPG City of Heroes? Then Paige Orwin‘s The Interminables is the book for you. It’s also the book for you if you never played the online game, because any novel about best friends with super powers who spend their time trying to stop an arms smuggling ring in a near future dystopian city and stumble into a shadow war…well, there’s a lot of rather appealing stuff to be excited about, isn’t there?
The sequel to Alyc Helms‘ brilliant urban-fantasy-with-dragons is heading to bookstores and we couldn’t be more excited for a continuation of the Missy Masters series. The Conclave of Shadow continues Missy’s struggle to save San Francisco – and the world – from the evil in the Shadow Realms. This series is a must for anyone that likes their fiction pulpy, their mythology rich and just a dash of supernatural romance on the side.
If you’re in the US or Canada only we’ve got just the giveaway for you! 5 copies of The Copper Promise, Jen Williams‘ sword and sorcery novel that reads like your most favourite D&D game and stars one of the coolest female protagonists around, are up for grabs. Released through Headline in the UK, The Copper Promise has already been bathed in the warm glow of praise, with Adrian Tchaikovsky pronouncing Jen “a fast-paced and original new voice in heroic fantasy.”
And for those based in the UK/Ireland/Australia/New Zealand only, a giveaway for Wesley Chu‘s hotly anticipated sequel to Time Salvager, Time Siege! We don’t want to give too much away but rest assured that this is a sci-fi novel as expansive in breadth and vision as the first novel in the series, which was described by NYT best-selling author Kevin Hearne as “powerful and compelling”.
Danielle L. Jensen, author of the breathtaking Malediction trilogy – a story of love, trolls and magic – will be taking part in an ‘Author Ask‘ with Elise Kova, author of the Air Awakens and Loom Sagas on Friday, June 24.
The chat will be live and streamed via YouTube at 9:00PM EST, so make sure to put on your pjs, grab a cool lemonade and tune in. In Elise’s words Danielle will be talking about “her books, life, the universe, and everything.”
Danielle will also be taking questions from fans prior to interview. So if you want to know why Marc is just so darn lovely, the inspiration for the glass garden, who King Thibault was based on or even if Danielle can sing opera (surely that would be worth a demo!) then make sure to head over to Elise’s blog and post your questions.
If you’d like to meet Danielle in person and are at UtopiaCon in Nashville this weekend, you can find her in the exhibitor hall loaded with swag. Make sure to grab a photo and tweet us or post to our Instagram.
Good afternoon fellows, and welcome to another Talk Tuesday to Us! This week we have the wonderfully amazing Alyc Helms, author of the urban-fantasy-with-dragons Missy Masters series, which comprises of The Dragons of Heaven and The Conclave of Shadow, the latter of which will be out in the US two weeks today!
Before we get to Alyc’s answers, I’d just like to direct you to this amazing picture of her dancing…I’m not sure where, but look at those moves! Feet in the air, look of pure, joyous concentration on her face. You’re inspiring us to quit publishing and tread the boards instead, Alyc! We’ll have an Angry Robot stage performance to you for Christmas.
With that thought to scare the life out of you, to the questions!
The Princess Bride, though I’d also direct folks to its conceptual grandparent, The Court Jester.
The book I give to other people (I’ve bought and given away around ten copies now) is Connie Willis’ collection, Impossible Things. It includes one of the first short stories I remember reading, “Even the Queen,” way back when I was a teen. I didn’t know stories could be that funny and insightful at the same time. Also, it has the incredible “The Last of the Winnebagos” which is a story that guts me every time I read it, and it has “Jack,” the story that first made me interested in the Blitz.
One book to burn:
Nope. Can’t do it. I don’t think all stories are good, but you can never know how a story you think is crap might have a positive, meaningful impact on someone else. I always kind of knew this, but it was driven home for me when I was reading Malala (the biography of Malala Yousafzai). Throughout the book, Malala talks about her two favorite American media – Ugly Betty and Twilight.
Twilight. I groaned. I thought about all the issues it has in the way it represents the control over and disempowerment of young women. But Malala talks about going on a school trip and playing ‘Twilight’ with her classmates, running around the woods pretending to be vampires. And you start to realize, to a girl facing the kind of repression she was, it must be very empowering to encounter a text where women can be vampires, can be as powerful as the men, can have agency, can freely attend school.
The chapter ends with some of the local imams making problems for the school because of the field trip, and Malala comments that she thinks it must be much easier to be a vampire in Twilight than it is to be a girl in Pakistan.
Yeah. I’m not taking that from anyone.
(Interesting side-note: The British nurses treating Malala after she was shot tried to show her the movie Bend It Like Beckham, thinking she’d appreciate Jess’s story. Malala was shocked by all the girls showing their legs and asked the nurses to turn it off halfway through.)
Hamilton the Musical has been playing in my head on a constant loop since September 2015. I actually considered getting exorbitantly priced secondhand tickets so I could go see it. I settled for getting the season subscription to San Francisco’s local theater so I could be sure to see the tour.
One creative person you’ve always wanted to be:
My best self. The one who wakes up early so she can make tea, light a candle, and get an hour of writing done before work. The one who transcribes her writing every evening so it doesn’t pile up. The one who remembers not to make weekend plans so she can hermit up and spend two whole, glorious days writing until her hand cramps. I love it when I’m her.
One book you wish you’d written:
Is the next one on my list to write. But it won’t be that book by the time I finish it. It will be some other book.
Do you have an unusual talent or skill?
At least a half-dozen of them. No, really. I’ve bounced around hobbies enough that I’ve got a decent list of skills built up. I can sew well enough to make a fully boned Victorian corset in six hours (which I did once, as part of a full, six-piece Victorian day ensemble that I churned out in a week). I’ve costumed major musical theater productions on a budget of less than $300. I dance – Scottish Highland, Irish step and ceilidh, English, Morris, ballet, tap, you name it. I can sing pretty well (though my chest voice is way better than my head voice). I know how to work on and run an archaeological project (Phase Ia through Phase IIc). I used to be able to change my own brakes and oil, but I’ve long since passed the point where I feel like I have something to prove, so I’m good with paying other people to do that now. Oh, and I recently taught myself to crochet!
Best place you’ve ever visited?
Cape Wrath, also known as Ultima Thule. The end of the earth. To get there, I had to take a plane (to London), a train (to Inverness), a bus (to Thurso), another bus and then a POSTAL TRUCK (to the Village of Smoo), a bike (to the Cape Wrath tour meeting point), a jeep, a boat (across the Kyle of Durness), and then another jeep.
I sat on the very edge of the cliff with my feet dangling over the ocean, watching the birds below me while I ate my lunch.
Favourite building or structure?
The Rialto Theater, an old 1920s movie and vaudeville theater in South Pasadena. This was the theater that I did The Rocky Horror Picture Show in for several years. It was my spiritual home during a tranformative period of my life, and a lot of the more bohemian aspect of Missy Masters are drawn from those times. In The Dragons of Heaven, the Rialto makes an incognito appearance as the Pagoda Palace (sadly, the real Pagoda Palace was condemned over twenty years ago and torn down about six months before the book came out). Connie Willis has a short story called “At the Rialto,” (which is her name for a Hollywood hotel in the story) and I keep forgetting to ask her if the Rialto hotel in her story was named after MY Rialto theater.
Things were looking grim for the Rialto for a while, but recently there has been an upsurge in local activity to save and restore the theater as a mult-arts performance venue. I really hope it succeeds. It’s such a gorgeous building, and I have so many happy memories associated with it.
What keeps you awake at night?
My cat. Sometimes he’s just nudging my head out of the way so he can claim more of the pillow, but sometimes he takes it into his head to chew on MY head.
If you weren’t a writer, what would you be?
Favourite fancy dress costume?
I’m particularly fond of the late Victorian era. Once you get into the bustle and the natural form shapes, Victorian fashion is the bomb. Mid-century Victorian, on the other hand, is… let’s put it this way. Someone once looked at me in my 1840s togs and said I looked ‘hideously Victorian’… and that was a compliment; it means I got it right.
I also very much love men’s fashion before the 20th century and have made and lost several frock coats and waistcoats.
We’re buying, what’ll you have?
Tea. Lapsang Souchang if they have it (few places do).
Would you write full time if you could?
Absolutely. My favorite thing is when I’ve managed to dodge making weekend plans and I can just hole up for two days, writing. My other favorite thing is to travel with my mom. She likes to go on cruises. I like ‘at sea’ days. I will camp out at a table by a window so I can watch the ocean go by, and I will write from 7am to 7pm and be so, so happy. And then we get dinner and see the show and rinse and repeat.
I am so boring.
Where would you like to be right now?
The Pacific Ocean. Always.
Complete this sentence: rewriting is…
Something I discovered rather late, and I’m so happy I did. My writing got much better once I realized I didn’t have to get it all right the first time.
Complete this sentence: blogging is…
Something I struggle with. I’m reluctant to write on most common topics because I feel like everything has already been said, often by someone smarter than me. Unless I have a useful intervention to make, I’m better off writing stories.
Where would you like to travel?
Everywhere. There are so many places I haven’t been.
If you could share one recipe, what would it be?
I have a ceviche recipe that’s pretty good, and I have a guacamole recipe that people who don’t usually like guacamole tend to love (mostly because mine is about half lime juice!)
Would you rather fight one giant mecha or ten duck sized cyborgs?
Do I have to fight the duckling-sized cyborgs? Couldn’t they just follow me around in a little train?
What’s your karaoke song?
“Part of Your World” with a “Poor Unfortunate Souls” chaser. I can do a decent Ariel and a KICKASS Ursula.
Thanks for joining us, Alyc! The Conclave of Shadow will be in all good bookstores on July 5 (US/Can) / July 7 (UK/R.o.W).
When we asked Brett Savory if he had an idea for a cover artist for his forthcoming novel A Perfect Machine we heard nothing but some indistinct garbled noises, before a scream of “ERIK MOHR!!” ripped forth from his throat. Whether pre-programmed to say that or not, the decision was made.
What resulted was a truly disturbing and brilliant cover that definitely captures the essence of A Perfect Machine.
We always like to hear a bit about the inspirations from an artist and so asked Erik if he could write us a little something about the evolution of his work for Tor.com, who kindly took the reveal.
Just click on the teaser image below to be taken to the full article. Brace yourself, it’s a little…dark.