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SFX magazine takeover, Kelly Braffet blurbs HANG WIRE, and the epic Forbidden Planet double book launch!

So this is a busy week.

Out today is issue 246 of SFX Magazine – inside of which you will find no fewer than three things either by, or related to… me!

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On page 108, Eddie Robson reviews The Burning Dark, awarding four stars and saying it is…

A skillful genre clash, using the furniture of military SF to stage a piece of psychological horror… what lingers at the end is the deeply uncanny quality of a haunted, abandoned space station, and a final sequence of revelations that pay off the tension handsomely.

All I can say it… wow! I love this review to bits!

If that whets your appetite, turn to page 116 for a two-page extract from the book, courtesy of Titan. The extract is an entire chapter, focussing on two of the marines stuck on the space station Coast City.

Following that, on page 118 is my second Book Club feature, this time on the Dragonlance classic, Dragons of Autumn Twilight.

Phew! Seriously, that must be some kind of record for SFX appearances.

I’m also delighted today to show off a new blurb for Hang Wire!

One of my favourite books of last year was Save Yourself, by literary wunderkind Kelly Braffet. Save Yourself is dark and beautiful, with a depth of character and elegance of prose that regular schmucks like myself can only dream of achieving.

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I was pleased as punch to make Kelly’s acquaintance via Twitter (man, three cheers for social media), and then just a little awestruck when she asked if she could read Hang Wire.

And she did, and this is what she said:

Adam Christopher’s Hang Wire reads like Erin Morgenstern via Tim Powers, but the dark, creepy heart that beats at its center is entirely its own. It’s good unclean fun, and so addictive.

And… wow. I’m speechless, and also very, very grateful to have received such wonderful praise from a writer such as Kelly. That blurbs joins Hang Wire‘s NPR review and starred Booklist review as some of the highlights of my writing career so far.

So if all of that tickles your fancy, come along to the Forbidden Planet Megastore at 179 Shaftesbury Avenue, London, on Thursday night (6th March) at 6pm for what promises to be an epic double launch of Hang Wire and The Burning Dark. I’ll be reading from both books, and the first 50 people in the door will get a Hang Wire fortune cookie (as seen in the book)! Hidden inside are four spot prizes, including a voucher for the Forbidden Planet store. There will also be jello shots! We were going to serve a wild strawberry liqueur – as seen in The Burning Dark – but it’s a little sweet and very sticky, so to make it safer for the store (sticky fingers on books is a bad idea), we’re making it into something a little easier to handle.

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As well as the regular paperback of Hang Wire, the limited edition, numbered hardcover – with gorgeous variant red cover by Kitschies Inky Tentacle winner Will Staehle – will be available for the first time. And not only that, this event will be your chance to grab The Burning Dark nearly three whole weeks before it goes on general sale anywhere in the world.

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Phew! I guess I’d better choose what to read then… see you tomorrow!

THE COPPER PROMISE by Jen Williams launches tonight at Forbidden Planet London!

So much for blogging every week day, but the last week or so has been a little hectic.

Today I’m off to London – third week in a row, would you believe – to help cheer on my pal Jen Williams as she launches her debut novel, The Copper Promise, at the Forbidden Planet Megastore tonight at 6pm.

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The Copper Promise is my kind of fantasy – fast, funny, full of action and with some seriously kick-ass characters. Also there is magic, and dragons, which, bizarrely, fantasy seems to be lacking at the moment.

So if you can’t make it to Forbidden Planet tonight, do yourself a favour and grab Jen’s book from your favourite bookstore. Trust me, you want to read it.

 

Angry Robot and Titan Books present: the HANG WIRE and THE BURNING DARK joint book launch!

As you know, I’ve got two books out in 2014 – Hang Wire, an urban fantasy from Angry Robot, and The Burning Dark, a dark space opera from Titan (in the UK; Tor in the US). Their release dates are pretty close together in the UK – February 6th for Hang Wire, and March 25th for The Burning Dark. Which is tricky.

So, we’re throwing a party!

For one night, Angry Robot and Titan are joining forces to host a double book launch at the Forbidden Planet Megastore in London on Thursday 6th March, 2014, 6pm.

But… have you spotted it yet?

Yep. This is your chance to get hold of The Burning Dark nearly THREE WEEKS prior to publication. The Titan paperback will be on sale at Forbidden Planet. Stock will be limited. When they are gone, they are gone. But if you can make it in, you’ll be among the first in the world to buy the book. It’s not out anywhere – UK or North America – until March 25th.

Here’s the cover for the Titan edition:

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So – this is your chance to grab it, nice and early!

Oh, and there is more, too.

Also released that night is the limited edition hardcover of Hang Wire. This features a cover in alternate colours, and is limited to just 100 copies, all signed and numbered. This hardcover is exclusive to Forbidden Planet.

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The regular paperback of Hang Wire will be available as well, of course.

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And… there’s still more.

There will be… drinks! Nibbles! Surprises! Giveaways! Surprise giveaways!

It’s going to be a lot of fun.

A Facebook event page will be set up shortly, although you don’t need to RSVP to attend. If you can’t make it, you can still order your copies of Hang Wire and The Burning Dark direct from Forbidden Planet.

And… one more thing.

Everybody who comes to Forbidden Planet will go into the draw for my giant pre-order contest (even though it’s after the official release of Hang Wire). I’m keeping the details of the contest prize a secret until January 6th, but trust me, you will want to be in the draw. The same rules will apply – buy one book, get one contest entry. Buy both books, get four contest entries. Buy the limited edition Hang Wire hardcover… well, I’ll have to think of something special! Full details of the contest will be posted in the New Year.

See you at Forbidden Planet!

Andromeda One – Birmingham Custard Factory, Saturday September 21st

Andromeda One, a new one-day genre lit convention, is being held this Saturday, 21st September, at the Custard Factory, Birmingham. The guests of honour are Paul Cornell and Jaine Fenn, and I’m pleased to be one of the programme participants (who also include Adam Nevill, Gaie Sebold, Adrian Tchaikovsky, Gav Thorpe, Ian Whates, and many others).

There’s no online programme, but my schedule for the day looks like this:

11:30am – 12:30pm, The Theatre
Crossing genre boundaries: Is Cthulhu SF or horror? What happens when you mix SF and fantasy, romance and SF, etc
with Misa Buckley, Iain McKinnon, Simon Marshall-Jones, Janet Edwards, Adam Nevill, Adrian Tchaikovsky
I’m actually moderating this rather large panel. Should be fun!

3.30 – 4:30pm, The Theatre
Does my rocket look big in this? Technology and prediction in SF
with Janet Edwards, Ian Whates, Lynn Cochrane, Chris Amies, Dave Corby, Stan Nicholls

4:30 – 5.30pm, The Theatre
Are comics the new mainstream?
with Paul Cornell and another panellist to be confirmed

Andromeda One runs from 11am until 10pm, and as well as two stream of panels, features workshops, kaffeeklastches, and a book launch. Tickets are £25, and you can find out more here.

Hope to see you on Saturday!

HANG WIRE cover reveal, THE BURNING DARK quotes, Tor catalogue, Waterstones event!

It’s a busy week in the run-up to Nine Worlds, which kicks off this Friday. You can see my full schedule here.

Yesterday the cover for my fourth novel from Angry Robot, Hang Wire, was revealed over at Sword and Laser. Hang Wire is out in February 2014, and will be available as both a regular paperback and as another limited edition Forbidden Planet-exclusive hardcover. The paperback is black…

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…while the hardcover is red…

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I’m totally in love with these covers, too! And with Hang Wire, that means Will has done a total of eight covers for me across two different publishers (Empire State, Empire State limited edition, Seven Wonders, The Age Atomic, Hang Wire, Hang Wire limited edition, The Burning Dark, and Two Tales of San Ventura).

Um, wow.

Hang Wire pre-order links imminent!

In other news:

Tor’s Winter 2014 catalogue is out now, and features The Burning Dark on page 42! It also includes a couple of blurbs I’ve been dying to show off:

New York Times bestselling-author James Lovegrove says:

With The Burning Dark Christopher has produced a widescreen Hollywood spectacular in novel form, littered with ‘wow’ moments and a few sly injokes for hardcore comic book fans to catch. Not to be missed.

Martha Wells, author of the forthcoming Star Wars novel Empire and Rebellion: Razor’s Edge, says:

A riveting SF mystery reminiscent of Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House.

Being in the Tor catalogue is something of a Big Moment for me, so there may have been a little Snoopy dancing last night. And my thanks to James and Martha for two stunning blurbs.

Finally, a date for your diaries – fellow author and superlatively nice chap James Smythe and I will be at Waterstones Deansgate in Manchester on Thursday 5th September to talk about our work. Doors open at 7pm and tickets are £5/£5 from the store – I’ll post a link to the event when the page goes live.

 

My slightly epic Nine Worlds 2013 schedule

This time next week is Nine Worlds, the brand spanking new UK convention covering science fiction, fantasy, and all things genre across books, TV, films, games, comics – you name it. The convention is being run across multiple concurrent streams, and the programme is PACKED, so I advise you pop over to their website and download the full schedule PDF

I’m excited to be taking part in what’s looking like a heck of a cool weekend. And they’re keeping me busy too:

FRIDAY, AUGUST 9th

5:00-6.15pm, Rad Royal A & B
Non-Genre Genre Shows
with Nickey Barnard, Lesley McIntee, David A. McIntee and John Medany

Some shows that aren’t strictly SFF in genre seem to have transcended their boundaries and become big hits with fans of more traditionally styled SFF shows. Veronica Mars has recently been kickstarted into a movie and Person of Interest‘s second season finale was described by some critics as one of the best pieces of true Science Fiction on television. Discuss these shows and more here.


6:45-8:00pm, Rad Royal A & B
Comic Book Heroes On The Small Screen
with Paul Cornell, Roz Kaveney and John Medany

From Adam West’s Batman to the 21st Century Arrow, how do our heroes fare on the small screen? It’s a different medium to both comic and film and in a lot of ways less forgiving. Where has it been done right, and where does it go wrong? Come and discuss the Original Batman, the 70s’ Spiderman and Hulk, the 80s’ The Flash, and more recently, Smallville, Heroes and Arrow


10:15 – 11.305pm, Lobby Room
New Voices Slam Session
with Liz de Jager, Stephanie Saulter, Rochita Loenen-Ruiz, Emma Newman, Barry Nugent, Danie Ware, Jennifer Williams, Lou Morgan, Hannah Chutzpah (emcee)

Come listen to short readings from nine of science fiction and fantasy’s most promising new authors. Bring your drinks, bring your friends: you might find your next literary addiction. Get to know these guys before they sell out!


SATURDAY, AUGUST 10th

12:00 – 1:00pm – Forbidden Planet table, dealer’s room (Vendors/Wessex)
Book signing!
with Adrian Tchaikovsky and Emma Newman


SUNDAY, AUGUST 10th

10:00-11:15am, George I
Can’t Take The Sky From Me: Science Fiction & Space Travel
with Jaine Fenn, Stephanie Saulter, Gavin Smith, Charles Stross and Ian Whates

It’s over fifty years since we sent the first humans into space. Are we still as excited about going to the stars? How have real-world concerns about the reality and practicality of space travel affected the genre?


11:45-1:00pm, George II & III
Doctor Who: The Ones You Love To Hate
with Ben Aaronovitch, Jonathan L Howard and David A. McIntee

Nothing’s more fun than a really hissable villain, and Doctor Who’s had more than its fair share of dastardly dudes and dames over the years. What makes a perfect villain? Is it the megalomaniac schemes? A catchphrase? Or just a natty line in sinister clothes? We talk all about the nastiest people in history.


1:30-2:45pm, George II & III
Is Doctor Who “Thunderingly Racist”?
with Abigail Brady, Una McCormack  and Iona Sharma

A recent academic study of DW makes a bold claim that the show is “thunderingly racist”. Is this true? No non-white actors have ever played the Doctor, and the absence of non-white people from the line-up of companions throughout the whole of the Classic Series is notable.


Phew! If I don’t see you on a panel, without a doubt I’ll be in the bar somewhere. See you there!

Edge Lit 2 schedule

A little site admin: added a new book page for The Burning Dark, and re-organised the main book index with some little teasers…

Tomorrow is Edge Lit 2 at the Quad, Derby. With guests of honour Mike Carey, Tricia Sullivan and Stan Nicholls, it promises to be a fun day of bookish chitchat! Here’s my own schedule of panels:

11am – Cinema Two
New Worlds: Building SF and Fantasy Settings
with Emma Newman, Gaie Sebold, Gavin Smith and Adrian Tchaikovsky
(I’m moderating this one)

2pm – Cinema One
Digital Age: How Has the Internet Changed Writing?
with Andrew Hook, Emma Newman, and Jennifer Williams

9pm – Cinema Two
Looking Back: First Genre Reads
with Gary McMahon, Lou Morgan, and Gavin Smith

See you Saturday!

(Edit: The First Genre Reads panel has been shifted from 8pm to 9pm – for any other updates, check the schedule when you arrive tomorrow!)

Linky links, a competition, appearances and a website update

So! Stuff I have been meaning to post for a while:

If you’ve enjoyed Seven Wonders, you’ll get a wry smile from these; if you’ve not yet tried the book, you get a flavour of Christopher’s approach.

Readers who want “that little bit more” from their storytelling should check this out. Recommended.

And the other stuff:

  • I’ve shifted some stuff around on my website – Books now has a new landing page, and each title’s individual page has had a makeover. If I’ve left anything out, or you see anything odd, please holler!
  • I’ve updated my appearances for 2013 – next up is Edge Lit 2, being held at the QUAD in Derby next month. The schedule for the one-day event is online – I’ll post more details about that next week.

THE AGE ATOMIC in The Financial Times, Reddit AMA, and Creative Industries Trafford panel discussion

Lots of links this week!

  • Last Thursday I took part in an “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) over at Reddit. It was a lot of fun answering questions, and if you jump over to the thread you can find out some more about my writing, future projects, the comicbook character I most want to write for, and who my fantasy casting for Jennifer Jones and Evelyn McHale from The Age Atomic are… among other things!
  • The Age Atomic was reviewed in Saturday’s Financial Times - you can read the full review online here, or click here for a photo of how it appeared in the print newspaper on page 10 of the Life & Arts section - who said, with reference to the first book, Empire State:

The first novel revelled in 1930s noir movies and pulp fiction. This one – a worthy successor – touches on the Red Menace paranoia of the dawn of the nuclear era but has the same jazzy plotting and anything-goes attitude that made Empire State such an unalloyed pleasure.

  • Paper Mages gave The Age Atomic a rather enthusiastic review, saying that I have:

… joined a list in the back of my mind of authors who reliably deliver book on book with the same quality and power of the very first, I trust him with my future reading and I think you’ll find yourself doing the same.

  • Finally today, Ellie Ann has made a video review of the book, which pretty much blew me away. You can watch the review here, and you’ll also find some brief answers to a couple of questions she sent me.

Tomorrow evening I’m appearing as part of a panel discussion entitled The Future is Unwritten: E-books vs. Print (spot the obvious problem) hosted by Creative Industries Trafford. The event kicks off at 6.00pm at the Waterside Arts Centre, 1 Waterside Plaze, Sale, M33 7ZF. It’s free to attend, but you have to book a place – click here for more information and tickets.

Sci-Fi Weekender schedule

This coming weekend is the Sci-Fi Weekender, two days of science fiction, fantasy, games and media, this year being held at the Hafan Y Mor Holiday Park in North Wales – which is, I am reliably informed, a much nicer venue than the Pontins, home to the former SFX Weekender the past three years.

The organisers never got around to updating their website, it seems, but I’m a guest at the event, and will be on the following panel:

Saturday, 5.00 – 6.00 pm, Spaceport.

The Future is Bright: But what would Asimov make of it? A discussion on the changing face of science fiction writing.

with Guy Haley (mod), Adam Christopher, James Smythe, Simon Morden, Stacia Kane, Francis Knight

The Weekender should be fun, in that kind of crazy organised chaos that it has been in previous years. There are loads of cool people going – a full line-up can be found here. The full programme is also up here.

In addition, I’ll be signing at the Angry Robot table on Saturday from 11.30 am to 12.00 pm, and other than that, I’ll be around the place. Hope to see you there!