Books

New Books!

No First Book Friday post this week, I’m afraid. So I figured we could do New Book Friday instead.

Oof. As it turns out, I know an awful lot of people who write books! I know this list is incomplete, too. I got in trouble for that the last time I posted a new books list, so if you have a book out and I didn’t include you, I’m not being deliberately exclusive. My brain cannot keep track of all the books.

So, anyone read any of these yet? Any you’re particularly looking forward to? And of course, feel free to add more new book suggestions in the comments!

Clicking the covers will take you to an excerpt/preview of the book, where available. (Making this one of the most link-heavy posts I’ve done in ages. I hope y’all appreciate how much work I do for you!)

Deathless [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Catherynne M. Valente.

The Shattered City [Harper Collins Australia] by Tansy Rayner Roberts.

The Woods [Amazon | B&N], an e-book from Stephen Leigh. (Also, B&N really needs to work on their search algorithms!!!)

Con and Conjure [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Lisa Shearin.

Faerie Winter [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Janni Lee Simner.

Fury of the Phoenix [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Cindy Pon.

Kat, Incorrigible [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Stephanie Burgis.

Rage [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Jackie Morse Kessler.

Shady Lady [Amazon | B&N | Mysterious Galaxy] by Ann Aguirre.

Nascence (17 stories that failed and what they taught me) [Amazon | B&N], an e-book by Tobias Buckell.

OTW Blog & LEGO M.A.S.K.

Goblin Tales [Amazon | B&N | Lulu] picked up reviews at SciFiChick (“This must-read collection…”) and Romantic Times (“…a fabulous introduction to Hines’ writing, his world of goblins, and his world of Libriomancy all in one — who can pass up a 3-fer?”)

#

A month or so back, I was invited to write a guest blog post for the Organization for Transformative Works. Here’s a sneak peek:

I’ve seen the whole spectrum of opinions, from “Fanfiction is the Devil’s Prose!” to “Fanfiction is so much better than that commercial dreck.” I don’t buy either view. Fanfiction is fanfiction. Some is brilliant. Some is abysmal. Fanfic authors sometimes get criticized for not writing commercially, but that makes as little sense as criticizing a fantasy author for not writing fortune cookies. For most of us, we write what we love, and we do it because we love it.

Full post is here.

#

Finally, does anyone else remember M.A.S.K., an 80s cartoon and toy line about vehicles and buildings with hidden weapons, concealed mini-vehicles, and also lots of masks? Orion Pax (the same individual who built a transforming Optimus Prime from LEGO) has been working on LEGO M.A.S.K., including a working version of Boulder Hill, the good guys’ HQ.

We had these toys! I remember playing with this set. This blows my mind. Click here or the thumbnails for the full photo set.

My Job Rocks, Part XVIII

For anyone in mid-Michigan, I’ve got a booksigning at pizza party tonight from 6:00 – 8:00 at Schuler Books in Okemos.  (Former Lansing signings have been at the Eastwood location.  If you go to the Eastwood store tonight, I won’t be there, and neither will all of that hot, yummy pizza.)

Any suggestions or requests for what you’d like me to read?

#

I also wanted thank everyone who’s posted reviews or comments about Red Hood’s Revenge on Amazon, Twitter, blogs, or wherever.  It’s very much appreciated, and I’m glad most of you have been enjoying it.

#

Not writing-related: my daughter Clara returned last night after a week up north with a friend.  She brought a monarch butterfly chrysalis and a caterpillar who’s about to form another chrysalis.  (She’s always been interested in the bugs.)

I’d never seen a monarch chrysalis before, and I couldn’t photograph the thing, but they’re beautiful.  Light green with metallic gold highlights.  It looks exactly like someone painted gold leaf over the raised ridge and bumps near the top.  Very cool.

#

Anyway, back to the rocking job.  In the past week, I’ve received books by Stacia Kane (autographed!), Sherwood Smith, and Beth Bernobich, and I should be receiving a copy of Erin Hoffman‘s forthcoming novel Sword of Fire and Sea soon as well.  Three of these four books won’t be out for a little while yet, but I get to read them all.  Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha!  I love my job!

  

I’m Back!

For anyone who’s had the chance to read Red Hood yet, if you felt like posting a review at Amazon and helping to knock that Harriet Klausner review off the front page, I’d be much obliged.  “Little Lady of the Red Hood” indeed…

#

I’m back!  Had a lovely vacation up north.  Kids spent most of the week swimming and working on their sunburns.  Everyone stayed up way too late, and most days I got to sleep in until 9 or even 10 in the morning.

Stopped by the local bookstore, which didn’t have Red Hood, but did have Crosscurrent [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] by my friend Paul Kemp.  It took me a few chapters to really get into it, mostly because I haven’t been reading the expanded universe Star Wars stuff, so I didn’t know the characters or recent events.  But it was a fun story (Star Wars + time travel!), albeit a bit dark at times, and an excellent vacation read.  Finished the book in about a day.

Ah, vacation…

I also hopped online a few times to check e-mail, Amazon ranking, Bookscan numbers, and so on.  Vacation or no, my book was coming out, and I had to be there!  I had to be doing something.  I had to … well … I don’t know.  It’s kind of strange, actually.  Turns out my book was released just fine without me.

Could it be that I didn’t need to be online 24/7 when the book came out?  Crazy talk, I know.  I mean, I did have some blog posts prewritten and scheduled, and I had warned my wife that we’d need to drive into town so I could post a Twitter update or two on release day … but we didn’t get into town until later that afternoon, and as far as I could tell, books continued to sell even when I wasn’t watching.  Heck, it’s too early to say for certain, but this one might even be selling better than the previous books.

Weird.

None of this comes as a real surprise.  Intellectually, I know my control and influence over the book is pretty much done the day I turn in the final manuscript.  Emotionally though, I still like to pretend I’m involved, and to cling to the illusion that I continue to have more control over the fate of the book.

Time to let go, I suppose.  Fly, little book.  Be free.  Enjoy your time on the New Releases shelf.  August will be here all too soon, and then far too many of you will be stripped and returned.  But until then, get out there and make your author proud.

Tomorrow I’ll probably be putting up a discussion post for the book.  And apropos of nothing, here’s a shot from when I was playing with the panorama setting on our digital camera last week.  Click for full size.

Other New Books

Jim is on vacation this week, and is blogging from one week in the past!  He has very little Internet access, but will read and catch up on comments eventually.

#

So for the past two days, I’ve talked about Red Hood’s Revenge [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon].  This raises another question:

Hey Jim, don’t you ever get tired of talking about your own book?

Yes.  Yes I do.  So here are some of the other books out this week!

Rift in the Sky [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Julie Czerneda.  This is the mass market release of book three in Czerneda’s Stratification series.  Czerneda is a fellow DAW author, and writes amazing aliens.  (In part because she has a fourth-degree black belt in biology.)

The Fuller Memorandum [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Charles Stross.  This is book three in Stross’ Bob Howard – Laundry series.  Harriet Klausner describes this book as “a terrific pull no punches paranormal espionage thriller” … which means it’s probably an epic romantic fantasy with weevils.  Either way, it’s Charlie Stross — check it out!

Unbroken Chain [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Jaleigh Johnson.  This is another of Johnson’s Forgotten Realms novels.  It has no weevils that I am aware of.  (I enjoyed her previous FR book Mistshore, which I reviewed here.)

Unholy Magic [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Stacia Kane.  This is the second book in Kane’s Downside Ghosts series.  You can read an excerpt or download the first five chapters on Kane’s website.  This one may or may not have weevils.

Winter Duty [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by E. E. Knight.  This is the mass market release of book #8 in Knight’s Vampire Earth series.  (My review of book one is here.)  This one definitely has weevils … alien vampire weevils!

So which of these are you rushing out to buy?  And what other great new books are out that I’m missing?


Open Books Post

All right, time for a break from the intense blog posts. Let’s talk books! Last night I finished The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] by N. K. Jemisin.

Wow. I’d heard a lot of buzz about this one, which always makes me nervous, because big book buzz doesn’t always translate to a book I’ll enjoy. But I have to say, this is the best book I’ve read so far this year, and as soon as I can remember how, I’ll be recommending it for the Nebula.

Was it a perfect book? No book is. But I loved the narrative style, I loved the worldbuilding, I loved the gods and most of the characters. It was a very well-written fantasy that sucked me in and kept me up late for the past two nights to finish it.

Jemisin has the first three chapters posted on her web site. Go forth and read.

#

One of the nice perks of being an author is that you get the occasional ARC or review copy. This has been a good month. Sitting on my To Be Read pile are review copies of:

I love being a writer 🙂 I’ve also got a copy of Nnedi Okorafor‘s Zahrah the Windseeker [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], which I picked up at her signing in Lansing last week.

What about you? What have you read and enjoyed lately, and what are you looking forward to picking up next?

Books and Squirrel

Two new books out today from friends of mine.

 

Feed [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Mira Grant, also known as Seanan McGuire (of Rosemary & Rue fame)[1. She’s been talking about the book on her LiveJournal, so I’m assuming the pseudonym is an open secret].  From the Publishers Weekly Starred Review:

Twin bloggers Georgia and Shaun Mason and their colleague Buffy are thrilled when Sen. Peter Ryman, the first presidential candidate to come of age since social media saved the world from a virus that reanimates the dead, invites them to cover his campaign. Then an event is attacked by zombies…

Bewitched & Betrayed [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon], by Lisa Shearin.  This is Shearin’s fourth book about seeker/sorceress Raine Benares.  Lisa has posted sample chapters from all four books on her web site.  Check ’em out!

#

Thanks for everyone’s input last week about discussing/sharing family stories and such online.  I talked to my wife and both kids about it, and I have a better sense how I’m going to try to go about this.  The current plan is to use the cut tag for these, since not everyone is interested.  I also let the kids choose pseudonyms for themselves.  (Clara and Jackson, if you’re wondering).  I’ll probably reevaluate as I go.

So anyway, this weekend I brought the kids to Michigan State to feed the ducks…

More

Books!!!

It’s a new month, which means new books to read!  In a purely self-interested move, let’s start with the one that has my story in it.

* A Girl’s Guide to Guns and Monsters [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] is … well, pretty much what it sounds like. Urban fantasy women, weapons, and monsters.  Including my story “Heart of Ash,” also known as the werejaguar/dryad story.  Anton Strout and Tanya Huff also have stories in this one.

* Next up we have the mass market release of The Horsemen’s Gambit [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] by David B. Coe.  This is the sequel to Coe’s book The Sorcerers’ Plague.  As a Tor book, this one isn’t available from Amazon.  Fortunately, Barnes & Noble, Mysterious Galaxy, and your local bookstores are all there to take up the slack!  Read chapter one here.

* Cherie Priest has a trade paperback release out this week, with Fathom [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon].  Another Tor book, and thus another contender for Sir Not Appearing at Amazon.com.  Publishers Weekly describes it as,  “A decidedly dark departure from Priest’s Eden Moore saga (Four and Twenty Blackbirds, etc.), this stand-alone novel is equal parts horror, contemporary fantasy and apocalyptic thriller.”

* Mark Henry‘s Happy Hour of the Damned [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] is out in mass market as well.  From Mark’s site, “There’s a campaign sweeping the internets to save my zombie diva from obscurity … What it boils down to is, Amanda Feral’s getting one more shot before the series gets nixed. My publisher is reissuing Happy Hour of the Damned, the first book in the series, in mass-market paperback for the paltry sum of $6.99.”  How can you refuse such a friendly-looking zombie?

* I missed posting the release of Jennifer Estep‘s book Spider’s Bite [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon] last month because I suck.  This is the first in Estep’s new urban fantasy series about an assassin named Gin.  It’s an intense book, pulling no punches on the sex, violence, or darkness of Gin’s world.  I liked that we had more openly fantasy elements in the urban setting.  No vampires secretly living as mortals here; everything’s out in the open.  My biggest nitpick was an aspect of Gin’s magic — I lost suspension of disbelief when she was able to use ice lockpicks.  Estep is guest blogging and giving away a copy of the book at SciFiChick.com.

* Finally, we have Michelle West‘s latest novel, City of Night [B&N | Mysterious Galaxy | Amazon]. This is the second book in her House War series, the sequel to The Hidden City.  You can read the first chapter on West’s web site.

I’m sure I’ve missed some, but this is already getting long and link-heavy.  What else is out, and what have you been reading and enjoying lately?


Search for the Snow Queen’s Title

Following up on yesterday’s post, for anyone interested in publishing industry numbers, one of my readers provided a link to Bowker’s 2009 industry statistics.  This doesn’t provide numbers sold, but does show the number of new books in various categories.  Worth a look, for anyone interested in this stuff.

#

So the princess series is going to be four books long.  Three of these books have titles:

The Stepsister Scheme [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy]
The Mermaid’s Madness
[Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy]
Red Hood’s Revenge [Amazon | Mysterious Galaxy]

Book four doesn’t have a final title, and I’m almost out of time.  We’re doing page proofs on Red Hood soon, and I want to make sure it includes information number four.

So I’m turning to y’all for help.  The final book is based on the Hans Christian Anderson fairy tale The Snow Queen, as most of you already know.  I need a title that will fit with the rest of the series, and will be so exciting, so vivid, that everyone is helpless to resist its allure.

At the moment, the tentative title is Spell of the Snow Queen.  It works, but my editor and I would love to find something that had a little more zing.  Rejected titles include:

Shards of the Snow Queen
Scourge of the Snow Queen
The Snow Queen’s Secret
Snow Queen and the Half-Blood Princess
The Snow Queen and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
The Snow Queen would make an awesome movie!  Are you listening, Peter Jackson?  E-mail me!
iSnow: Apple’s Revenge
Godzilla vs. Snow Queen

All suggestions are welcome.  If we end up using yours, you’ll receive an autographed book and a shout-out in the acknowledgements.

Jim C. Hines