October  2003
© 2003 Ernest Lilley / SFRevu
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October  2003 UK Releases by John Berlyne
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October, being the traditional month in which ghouls tend to roam, seems an appropriate time for the release of Robin McKinley’s new novel Sunshine, a story concerned largely with vampires and baking! It’s not as strange a recipe as you may think, though to avoid misleading you, the baking refers to the profession of the eponymous heroine. This is an Vampire novel with a fascinating (and very tasty) angle and the wonderful contemporary, yet darkly different setting. McKinley is a (deservedly) highly respected fantasist and she doesn’t disappoint. Look out for Sunshine which is published on both sides of the Atlantic this month. The UK edition is released  by Transworld/Bantam in trade paperback. Price £10.99.  

Also published “over here” and “over there” is this months BIG title – Quicksilver by Neal Stephenson is a big old read, but worth every moment you spend on it. If you want elaboration on this, please take a look at my review in this month’s edition. The British edition of Quicksilver is published in hard cover by Heinemann priced £16.99. 

The highly productive and endlessly inventive British writer Adam Roberts has his new work, The Soddit or Cashing in Again released by Gollancz. This neat hardcover, which, if you haven’t guessed from the title is a parody of  the Tolkien classic is a small format hard cover priced at £5.99. Another productive Brit, Stephen Baxter has a more serious work out this month. His novel Coalescent begins a new SF trilogy and though I’ve yet to read it, the word is that it’s a cracker. Coalescent is released in both hard cover (£17.99) and trade paperback (£12.99). Gollancz offer a wonderful crop of classic reprints too this month: Philip K Dick’s early tale of the tragic messiah Floyd Jones, The World Jones Made is re-released in trade paperback priced £6.99: in the yellow jacketed Gollancz Collectors Editions series both Joe Haldeman’s All My Sins Remembered and Damnation Alley by Roger Zelazney are issued in trade paperback at £9.99 and the Fantasy Masterworks series reaches release #39 with The Mabinogion by Evangeline Walton – this is a trade paperback released at £8.99. The final Gollancz release for October is the mass market edition of Diamond Dogs / Turquoise Days, two novellas by Alastair Reynolds. Both released previously as limited editions (read my review of Diamond Dogs here), these superb stories are well worth a look and are priced at only £5.99. 

The soon to be defunct Earthlight imprint continues its orbital decay towards extinction with the release of three titles this month – all are priced £6.99. Book three in Marcus Herniman’s Arrandin Trilogy, The Fall of Lautuin is a paperback original as is The King of Sleep by Caiseal Mór which is the second book in a series called The Watchers. The final release is the mass market edition of Rulers of the Darkness, the fourth Darkness title by alternative history master Harry Turtledove. 

And a brand new Turtledove novel is a lead genre title from Hodder & Stoughton. American Empire: The Victorious Opposition is a smart hardcover priced at £18.99. Also in hard cover from Hodder comes Stephen King’s The Dark Tower: A Concordance: Vol I. This wordily titled work is edited by Robin Furth  serves as a guide to King’s sweeping fantasy epic and a second volume will be released alongside the final book in the series sometime next year. In the meantime the preparation goes on for the arrival of Volume V, The Wolves of the Calla (look out for my review in next month’s issue) with the reissue this month of the fourth title in the series, Wizards and Glass. This is mass market paperback priced at £7.99.

HarperCollins/Voyager offer a couple of top US fantasy imports from Lois McMaster Bujold and Robin Hobb this month. Bujold’s novel, Paladin of Souls is released in trade paperback priced at £11.99 and the third and final volume in Hobb’s highly acclaimed series of The Tawny Man is also published. Fool’s Fate is a hard cover priced at £18.99. This title will be reviewed by Iain Emsley in next month’s issue and will be accompanied by an exclusive interview with the author who will be visiting the UK for the first time in three years. The Golden Fool, the second title in this series is issued in mass market paperback priced £7.99. 

A single delicacy is offered by Macmillan’s Tor UK imprint this month. Veniss Underground is Jeff Vandermeer’s dark and phantasmagorical retelling of the Orpheus and Eurydice myth and is released in trade paperback priced at £10.99. This is a chilling and unsettling read from Vandermeer, doubtless one of the most inventive and stylish writers to have emerged in recent years. It is great to see his work published in the UK. Be sure to look out for the exceptional City of Saints and Madmen which is due from Tor UK next March and which I highly recommend.

 Following on from the release last month of the superb new Philip Reeve novel, Predator’s Gold (reviewed here), Scholastic release Susan Price’s A Sterkham Kiss in hard cover priced at £12.99. This is excellent YA genre writing and well worth a look – so says our own Iain Emsley in his review of this title (review) .

My final October review covers Tricia Sullivan’s latest novel Maul, which is released in trade paperback by Orbit, priced at £10.99. Hard core in every way, this one will grab your attention from the off (review).  Also from Orbit comes a new work from Robert Reed (whose novel Sister Alice I reviewed here a few months ago – Down The Bright Way is hard SF from the writer that Stephen Baxter describes as “The new century’s most compelling SF voice” and is a paperback original priced at £6.99. Legacies is the first in a new series by L.E.Modesitt Jr called The Corean Chronicles – this is a paperback original priced at £7.99 and reviewed by two SFRevuers when hardcover released in the US in November of 2002.  The final Orbit tile is the  market paperback edition of  Memory, the final title in The Scavenger Trilogy by K.J.Parker. This release is priced at £6.99.

More next month.

                                                                                                 

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