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UK Books Received- 08/2006  Next Month / Last Month
In order to provide timely reviews, we prefer to receive Advance Reader Copies of books when possible. Send books to Gayle Surrette c/o SFRevu, 16440 Baden Westwood Road Brandywine, MD 20613


Touching Darkness (Midnighters S.) by Scott Westerfeld (ATOM 03 August, 2006 / £6.99) -

"Meet the Midnighters. By day, they're outsiders. Teenagers with black coats and bad attitudes. By night, they might just be our last hope...

The second title in Scott Westerfield's Midnightners, young adult sequence. Touching Darkness is a trade paperback release from Atom.

Bantam Press

Dragon's Fire by Anne McCaffrey (Bantam Press 01 August, 2006 / £17.99) - A second mother/son collaboration by Anne and Todd McCaffrey. Dragon's Fire further extends the saga of the dragons of Pern, a sequence of stories begun my Anne McCaffrey nearly forty years ago. Son Todd (an L.A. based computer engineer) is now writing solo novels set in this world, though whether a talent for writing is in the genes, only time will tell.


Band of Gypsys (Gollancz SF S.) by Gwyneth Jones (Gollancz 08 June, 2006 / £6.99) - Repackaged for this mass market paperback edition, Gwyneth Jones' Band of Gypsys is the fourth instalment in the award winning Bold As Love sequence - a highly imaginative counter-culture tale for which Jones' endlessly inventive and playful imagination has created a rich backstory.

Barry Trotter And The Shameless Parodies by Michael Gerber (Gollancz 15 June, 2006 / £12.99) - Michael Gerber's satirical grip on J.K. Rowling's coat tails is strengthened further with the release of this omnibus edition featuring three of his Barry Trotter novels. A shameless piss-take that, whilst not exactly threatening J.K's top spot on the best-seller lists, has certainly racked up enough sales to justify this new release - a note on the copyright page states "This book exists solely to make a quick buck."!!!!

Emperor (Gollancz S.F.) by Stephen Baxter (Gollancz 20 July, 2006 / £10.99) - Stephen Baxter - one of our most respected and prolific SF authors - steps outside the confines of his long running Xeelee stories to show us once again what a fantastically versatile and talented writer he is. Emperor begins a new Baxter series of historical thrillers to rival the works of Conn Iggulden.

"History is about to be re-written..."

Jack of Ravens: Kingdom of the Serpent (Gollancz SF S.) by Mark Chadbourn (Gollancz 20 July, 2006 / £12.99) - Jack of Ravens hails the start of a brand new sequence from one of the UK sharpest fantasy authors, Mark Chadbourn. It's an unconventional tale that spans centuries of time and swings between realities. It involves heavy magic and dire threats and looks set to be one of the most challenging fantasies of the year. Reviewed this issue. (see review)

Life During Wartime (S.F.Masterworks S.) by Lucius Shepard (Gollancz 08 June, 2006 / £6.99) - Lucius Shepard's 1987 novel Life During Wartime becomes the 66th title in the Gollancz SF Masterworks series - a sequence of classic SF novels, some going way back, some fairly recent, the linking thread here being that each and every one is essential and required reading for any self-respecting genre fan.

The Fledging of Az Gabrielson: The Clouded World Series Book One (Gollancz SF S.) by Jay Amory (Gollancz 17 August, 2006 / £12.99) - A new YA adult novel from Gollancz author Jay Amory targeted towards fans of Philip Pullman and Philip Reeve. Reviewed this issue. (see review)

The Hounds of Avalon (Dark Age S.) by Mark Chadbourn (Gollancz 08 June, 2006 / £6.99) - The final instalment in Chadbourn's The Dark Age sequence, following on from The Devil in Green and The Queen of Sinister. The Hounds of Avalon is released in mass market paperback.

"The Hounds of Avalon are coming... For these are the twilight days, when eternal winter falls and the gods destroy themselves in civil war: when an invasion force of ghastly power threatens to eradicate all life."

The Zap Gun (Gollancz SF S.) by Philip K. Dick (Gollancz 08 June, 2006 / £6.99) - Philip K. Dick's 1967 novel The Zap Gun is reissued by Gollancz.

"Scaldingly sarcastic yet enduringly empathetic, The Zap Gun is Dick’s remarkable novel depicting the insanity of the arms race. Lars Powderdry and Lilo Topchev are counterpart weapons fashion designers for a world divided into two factions–Wes-bloc and Peep-East. Since the Plowshare Protocols of 2002, their job has been to invent elaborate weapons that only seem massively lethal. But when alien satellites hostile to both sides appear in the sky, the two are brought together in the dire hope that they can create a weapon to save the world, a task made all the more difficult by Lars falling in love with Lilo even as he knows she's trying to kill him."

Headline Book Publishing Ltd

Maximum Ride: School's Out Forever by James Patterson (Headline Book Publishing Ltd 14 August, 2006 / £12.99) - Best selling American thriller writer James Patterson is applies his Midas touch to this second YA title in his Maximum Ride series. Schools Out Forever looks set to follow it's predecessor The Angel Experiment in acclaim and popularity. Click this link for the author's official web site.

"It's 24 hours since Max Ride and her fellow bird-kids escaped the New York Institute, and they're still on the run. The six companions - 98% human, 2% bird - come away with vital information. If they can decode the garbled words and numbers, perhaps they can find out where their parents are."


The Boss Throne by G.W. Hixon (Matador June, 2006 / £9.20) - A Druidic fantasy by British writer G.W. Hixon, released through Matador, a quality self publishing outfit based here in the UK.

"Badad is the last of the druids of Geramon, a once fair and heroic country that has since been ravaged by war".


Betrayal (Trinity S.) by Fiona McIntosh (Orbit 03 August, 2006 / £7.99) - British born but Australian based fantasy author Fiona McIntosh garnered some impressive reviews with the release of her fantasy trilogy, The Quickening - comprising Myrren's Gift, Blood and Memory and Bridge of Souls and the sequence was very highly praised by Robin Hobb. Orbit now publish the opening instalment of McIntosh's new fantasy series, simply titled Trinity. (This new trilogy was actually McIntosh's first published fantasy back in Australia). More info can be found at the author's web site and you can catch SFRevu editor Gayle Surette's reviews of the previous trilogy by clicking on the links above.

Bloodsucking Fiends by Christopher Moore (Orbit 03 August, 2006 / £6.99) - This month Orbit release two more titles in Christopher Moore's backlist. Moore is an American comic fantasy writer whose work often strays into the absurd. He is also a best-selling author! Bloodsucking Fiends, Moore's 1995 vampire comedy is issued in trade paperback.

Coyote Blue by Christopher Moore (Orbit 06 July, 2006 / £6.99) - The third Christopher Moore reissue from Orbit comes with a warning on the cover that is "...contains scenes of an implausible nature". Coyote Blue (1994) was Moore's second novel and is published in trade paperback by Orbit. If you're just discovering Moore's work through these Orbit reissues, you should definitely take a trip to the author's web site -

Danse Macabre by Laurell K. Hamilton (Orbit 06 July, 2006 / £12.99) - A brand new Anita Blake : Vampire Hunter novel from Laurel K. Hamilton. This series has become the benchmark for the contemporary supernatural thriller, with many imitators and pretenders to Hamilton's throne stepping up to challenge -and not quite succeeding. This new title, Danse Macabre is the thirteenth in this sequence of novels that shows night signs of slowing. The legions of Anita fans will be thrilled with this Orbit hard cover release. More info at the author's web site .

Dying Words by Shaun Hutson (Orbit 03 August, 2006 / £17.99) - Shaun Hutson is a rare breed indeed, for he's a British home grown, high profile horror writer whose novels are not only in print, but whose career is visibly promoted by one of the main genre publishers. There are not too many horror writers over here who can boast of the same experience. In fact as I write, I'm trying to think of who could ... er ... James Herbert.... er.... that's it! There are, of course, many excellent horror writers in the UK right now, but the point here is about profile and publicity, not talent.

Luckily Hutson has a healthy portion of all these qualities - and this month sees his new novel Dying Word released in hardcover by Orbit. More info at the author's excellent official web site.

Last of the Wilds (Age of the Five S.) by Trudi Canavan (Orbit 01 August, 2006 / £12.99) - Trudi Canavan spearheads Orbit's impressive list of Antipodean authors. Her Black Magician Trilogy has sold over 350,000 copies, and this, according to publisher Orbit, makes her the best selling new fantasy writer of the last decade.

This month sees the release of second title in Canavan latest fantasy sequence, entitled Age of the Five. Last of the Wilds is an attractive hardcover priced at £12.99. Find out more about Canavan's work by visiting her official web site .

Priestess of the White (Age of the Five S.) by Trudi Canavan (Orbit 06 July, 2006 / £7.99) - Priestess of the White, the first title in Trudi Canavan's latest fantasy series Age of the Five is issued by Orbit in mass market paperback. The second title is also released this month - see below.

The Doublecross Program (Star Risk S.) by Chris Bunch (Orbit 03 August, 2006 / £6.99) - Another Star Risk title from the late Chris Bunch is given its UK release by Orbit. The Doublecross Program is book three of this "A-Team in Space" inspired series and is published as a paperback original.


New Dreams for Old by Mike Resnick (Pyr June, 2006 / £8.14) - Our friends in the US at Pyr have kindly send along a copy of Mike Resnick's latest short story collection for me to consider for review. New Dreams for Old is a trade paperback release and contains "...award winners and nominees....two stories that are currently in development in Hollywood....stories that have won readers polls, that have won foreign prizes, and a few that just out-and-out hilarious.

I have yet to get round to reading any of Resnick's work, but this collection just looks too good to pass by.

However, SFRevu ran Nicki Lynch's review of New Dreams for Old in our July 2006 issue.

Paragaea: A Planetary Romance by Chris Roberson (Pyr 23 May, 2006 / £8.14) - Old style SF pulp is given a dust down and brought bang up to date in this time travelling planetary romance by Chris Robertson. Clearly a homage to the wide-eyed wonder instilled in us by writers such as Edgar Rice Burroughs and Leigh Brackett, Paragaea also touches upon a number of contemporary scientific concerns and is the kind of adventure filled romp that only science fiction can offer to reader. I can wait to read it! Reviewed this issue. (see review)

Simon & Schuster Ltd

Of Fire and Night by Kevin J. Anderson (Simon & Schuster Ltd 07 August, 2006 / £12.99) - Space Opera on the most panoramic scale imaginable - Kevin J. Anderson's huge, sprawling tale, The Saga of the Seven Suns reaches it's fifth instalment with the release of Of Fire and Night.

"The Saga of the Seven Suns is worthy of being mentioned in the same breath as Asimov's Foundation series and Peter F. Hamilton's Nightsdawn Trilogy..." -- The Alien Online.


Phantom by Terry Goodkind (Voyager 17 July, 2006 / £18.99) - I've not had a chance to read Phantom yet, but the I hear that after a couple of recent stodgey works, Goodkind is back at his best with this latest novel in his best-selling, huge fantasy epic the Sword of Truth and the second novel in the Chainfire sequence. A weighty and very smart hardcover release from HarperCollins Voyager. Goodkind's excellent official web site can be found by clicking this link.

Prince Ajatasattu (Buddha S.) by Osamu Tezuka (Voyager 03 July, 2006 / £10.00) - The seventh volume in Osamu Tezuka's graphic novel rendition of the story of the Buddha. This is simply a work of genius - massively important in terms of culture and of art, it marks, as a reviewer in METRO stated, the "...point after which Manga novels were regarded as a serious form of literature." Though now thirty years old, this extraordinary work remains as vibrant and fascinating as ever and HarperCollins are to be congratulated heartily for this beautiful eight volume release that offers a new generation of readers the chance to experience Tezuka's masterpiece.

Sorcerer's Moon (Boreal Moon Tale) by Julian May (Voyager 07 August, 2006 / £18.99) - The concluding volume of Julian May's Boreal Moon Tale, released in hard cover by HarperCollins Voyager.

"For sixteen years King Conrig Ironcrown has ruled High Blenholme, battling both to preserve the sovereignty he ruthlessly established over the four provinces of the island kingdom and to repel the invading Salka monsters that threaten them all. His hope for the future is his heir, Prince Orrion, whose betrothal to a princess of the province of Didion should assure the future peace of High Blenholme. But Orrion has no interest in the girl, and is determined to marry instead his childhood sweetheart, Lady Nyla."

Check out our reviews of the first two novels in this series, Conqueror's Moon and Ironcrown Moon.

Temeraire by Naomi Novik (Voyager 07 August, 2006 / £6.99) - Naomi Novik's charming and extremely impressive debut novel Temeraire is issued in HarperCollin's Voyager in mass market paperback. Originally reviewed at the start of the year in our January edition, my review is reprinted in this issue. For further information visit the author's official web site(see review)

Traitor's Sword (Sangreal Trilogy) by Amanda Hemingway (Voyager 07 August, 2006 / £6.99) - The mass market edition of the second novel in Amanda Hemingway's charming Sangreal Trilogy. I've long been an admirer of Hemingway's work, including that published under the pseudonym of Jan Seigel, and you find reviews of her novels dotted around our archive. My original review of The Traitor's Sword from November 2005 is reprinted in this issue. (see review)

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