UK December Releases by John Berlyne
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Only a handful of shopping days until Christmas and Santa has given us a very modest bunch of seasonal releases here in the UK. Not to disparage what is coming out here this month, but the feeling is very much of the year winding down, almost as if the publishers are taking a rest before next year's battles for our hard earned cash.

The forthcoming year has some stunning titles in store - new books from China Miéville and Neal Asher will be published by Macmillan; Gollancz have works from Alastair Reynolds and newcomer Richard Morgan amongst many others; HarperCollins will be giving us new books by Kim Stanley Robinson and Michael Marshall Smith; Orbit offer works from Sean Russell, J.V. Jones, Brian Aldiss and Tad Williams; Earthlight publish the new Jon Courtney Grimwood, the latest from prodigy Anselm Audley and a new John Whitbourn and last but not least Transworld will release a new Anne McCaffrey, a new John Meaney and a second book from Ricardo Pinto. This, of course, merely scrapes the surface of what looks to be a bumper year in British genre publishing. I look forward to bringing you the news as it happens!

So, to December... Fans of Steve Erikson's epic fantasy Malazan Book of the Fallen series finally see the release of the long-awaited third volume. Memories of Ice, the biggest volume thus far is a hefty trade paperback priced at £12.99 and is published by Transworld. Though certainly a major title, this is the only genre release this month from the Transworld empire, which includes the Bantam, Corgi, Corgi Yearling and Doubleday UK imprints.

Pan Macmillan too release only one title this month - The Cure of Souls by Phil Rickman (see our review this issue). This is the latest supernatural thriller from Rickman and is released in hard cover priced at £16.99.

Only one book also from Hodder Headline. Harry Turtledove's latest alternative history series kicks off with American Empire Vol. 1 - Blood and Iron. Released in hard cover, it is priced at £18.99. Turtledove's previous title sees its mass market paperback release from New English Library. Colonisation Aftershocks is priced at £6.99. Incidentally, the Hodder press release states that Turtledove will be one of the guests of honour at next year's UK Eastercon - Helicon 2, which takes place in Jersey from March 29th to April 1. Check out their web site at  <> for further details.

Orbit, thankfully, breaks this singular cycle with the release of three noteworthy titles. The ninth volume in the hugely popular Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter series gets its UK outing. Obsidian Butterfly by Laurell K. Hamilton will no doubt delight fans of this Buffey-esque heroine. The release is a paperback priced at £6.99. December also sees the release of The Crystal Desert, The Guardian Cycle Book 3 by the pseudonymous Julia Gray (paperback, priced at £6.99) and the fourth volume in Australian author Ian Irvine's The View From the Mirror series. The Way Between the Worlds is a paperback priced at £7.99. Orbit also publish J.V. Jones in spades this month. The three titles comprising The Books of Words series are released - The Baker's Boy, A Man Betrayed and Master and Fool are all paperbacks priced at £6.99. Also released in paperback is The Barbed Coil, priced at £7.99.

Nothing at all this month from Earthlight!

Gollancz, in keeping with their usual voluminous output, have much to offer, though notably, with the exception of Terry Goodkind's The Pillars of Creation, all releases are reprints. The Goodkind novel is the seventh in his Sword of Truth series and is issued as an impressive hard cover priced at £17.99. Mass market paperback releases are issued of K. W. Jeter's Bladerunner 4: Eye and Talon and Alastair Reynolds' superb Chasm City (see my review in our archives) - both these titles are priced at £6.99. The Invisible Man by H.G.Wells becomes the 47th title in the SF Masterworks series - released as a trade paperback, it is priced at £6.99. The Fantasy Masterworks series sees Fritz Leiber's The Second Book of Lanhkmar as #24. This too is a trade paperback. This is priced at £8.99.

Following the trend, HarperCollins/Voyager have only a single mass market offering this month. Krondor: Tear of the Gods by Raymond E. Feist is issued at £6.99. The Voyager Classic imprint though has four wonderful releases continuing their excellent series. Asimov's I, Robot, That Hideous Strength by C. S. Lewis, Bradbury's The Martian Chronicles and another Feist, Magician are all trade paperbacks in the smart blue wraps. All are priced at £7.99.

John Berlyne
UK Associate Editor

© 2001 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu  

sa 12.16.01