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November 2002
© 2002 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu
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November 2002 UK Releases by John Berlyne

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Here's a list of what's coming out in the UK this month in Science Fiction and Fantasy. If we missed something or you have a title coming out in the future, email us at

It has clearly been an eventful time in British SF whilst I've been off pursuing my "real life" job - if working as an actor can be describe in any way as being "real"! I guess it's a real as any other job, but it's just that the reality visits less often! My sincere thanks to Iain Emsley for his sterling work in keeping this column alive during my protracted absence.


There have been some interested happenings over here in recent months. Macmillan have announced the launch of Tor UK, their dedicated SF imprint. This long rumored move is superb news given that it will allow Macmillan to further consolidate and expand their already hugely impressive list. Their stable already includes such home-grown luminaries as Peter F. Hamilton, China Miéville, Neal Asher and Justina Robson as well as some impressive imported authors. Upcoming names to watch out for in the coming year include Steve Cash, Andy Secombe and Cherith Baldry. The imprint will launch in March 2003 with New Zealander Juliet Marillier's Wolfskin as their lead title.

Changes at Earthlight have seen the departure of John Jarrold as their senior editor. John, long one of the most influential figures in British SF publishing, will doubtless continue to feature in the scheme of things. In the meantime, Earthlight's marketing manager, Darren Nash will now head the list and a more deserved promotion I could not imagine. A truly dedicated lover of the genre, Darren will no doubt prove a safe pair of hands for the list that John had built up over the last five years. I wish him great good luck!

America's favourite British son, Neil Gaiman scooped this years Hugo for American Gods - a very popular winner (and one of three Brits nominated!). See SFRevu editor Ernest Lilley's review and our staff's Hugo coverage.  Richard Morgan sold the film rights to his brilliant debut novel Altered Carbon (review  / author interview) for a handsome figure. Way to go Richard!  A sequel entitled Pass in the Night is due from Gollancz in March next year.

November Releases

Transworld head up this month's releases with three impressive hard covers. The new novel by British literary SF writer (and previous winner of the Arthur C. Clarke award) Jeff Noon entitled Falling Out of Cars is published by Doubleday in hard cover priced at a very reasonable £12.99. Be sure to read my review in this issue.[Insert the link to my review - which is to follow!!!]. I've come late to Noon's work, but from this latest I can see that his increasing reputation as a cutting edge cult writer  is more than justified. I look forward to catching up on his back list. Be sure to check out his web site at I just found out we were both born in Manchester!

Transworld also publish two other very notable hard covers this month - Pratchett fans will delight in the release of the 27th Discworld novel. Night Watch is a substantial tome priced at £17.99 andreleased under the Doubleday imprint - and Context, John Meaney's long awaited follow-up to Paradox finally sees publication after what seems like months of delay. This is a Bantam book priced at £18.99.

Top of my picks from Gollancz this month is The Drawing of the Dark by Tim Powers. Those that know me will realise that this is an entirely partisan recommendation and it certainly is! Aside from the fact that I am a big Powers fan (take a trip to and you'll get the picture!) this is, objectively, just a superb novel. Gollancz release it as number #33 in their Fantasy Masterworks series, priced at £6.99.

The top non-partisan pick from Gollancz is the new Stephen Baxter novel, Evolution. A new Baxter work is always big news and this is his first with this publisher following his move from HarperCollins. Evolution is released in both hard cover (£18.99) and trade paperback (£12.99). Fat fantasy also this month from Gollancz who release Kate Jacoby's Trials of Fire as a large format trade paperback priced at £10.99. Jacoby's previous novel, The Rebel's Cage, gets its mass market outing at £6.99, as does Sheri S. Tepper's Raising the Stones (£5.99). New reprint editions of the Douglas Adams classics, The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe and Life, the Universe and Everything are also issued - all priced at £5.99. Lastly, cult SF writer Steve Aylett (see my review of his novel Atom) has Dummyland published in trade paperback, priced at £9.99.

Only one new release from HarperCollins/Voyager this month, but this one well worth a look. Sarah Zettel's The Usurper's Crown is the follow up to her excellent fantasy novel, A Sorcerer's Treason. I enjoyed this first book tremendously and the sequel looks very promising indeed. Released in trade paperback at £11.99. A hard cover release was also announced. Voyager also issue one mass market reprint this month. The Crippled Angel by Sara Douglas is the final book in her Crucible trilogy and is priced at £6.99.

Orbit has a release to challenge for the top spot this month with the publication of Ken Macleod's new novel, Engine City. This author, nominated for this year's Hugo, is now firmly established as one of the treasures of British SF. This, his final novel in the Engines of Light trilogy is released in hard cover priced at £16.99. Orbit also publish Speed of Dark by the prolific Elizabeth Moon. This is a paperback original priced at £6.99 and precedes the US hard cover not due out until next month. The final orbit book this month is the mass market paperback edition of A Fortress of Grey Ice by J.V.Jones (£7.99). This is the second in her Sword of Shadows series and continues the freezing cold tale of clan war and magic begun in A Cavern of Black Ice. Julie Jones is, like Gaiman, another ex-pat Brit who has settled in the States. Also like Gaiman, she is a fine writer and if you like your fantasy full of snow and comfortingly heavy on your knees, I can heartily recommend her work. Her web site is at

It is clearly a heck of a month for hard SF over here, as Macmillan also have a big name release in the running for the top release with the publication of the new book by Peter F. Hamilton. Misspent Youth is something of a departure from the normal far future stuff we delight in from this author. This one is set only some forty years hence and concerns genetic research into halting the aging process. Released in hard cover, Misspent Youth is priced at £17.99.

More next month! 

John Berlyne - UK Associate Editor - -

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