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Thursday, January 8, 2009

Fantasy Book Critic’s 2008 Review/2009 Preview — Stephen Deas


2008 FAVORITES:

2008 has been a really bad year for actually reading anything. The stand-out title has to be
Joe Abercrombie’sThe Blade Itself”, and I'm so glad I waited until after I'd written “The Adamantine Palace” before I settled into it—too close to what I'm trying to write for comfort. After that, “The Last Wish” (Andrzej Sapkowski) had a pleasant freshness to it. I seem to have read a lot of mediocre books this year. And a lot of self-published or small press ones that I've picked up at conventions. Of the latter, “The Exaggerated Man and Other Stories” by Terry Grimwood deserves mention. Dark, mind-bending science fiction (mostly) short stories and very well done.

LOOKING AHEAD TO 2009:

This is hard. I've started
Patrick Rothfuss'The Name of the Wind”, which I'm reliably told I have to read, right now this instant, no matter what. Then there's Joe Abercrombie'sBefore You Are Hanged” and the “Last Argument of Kings”, both glaring at me from the bookshelf. I still have “Escapement” by K.J. Parker and I gather there's another one out. “Anathem” by Neal Stephenson will be obligatory. “A Mercy” by Toni Morrison. “The Steel Remains” by Richard Morgan.

I suppose I ought to read Temeraire (
Naomi Novik) too. I'm also told I ought to read “The Red Wolf Conspiracy” by Robert Redick. The sad fact is that I'll probably get through half of those at best, and I haven't even started on 2009 releases. “A Dance With Dragons”, if it appears, I'll have to read that.

ON THE HORIZON WITH STEPHEN DEAS:

The Adamantine Palace” is published in the UK in March (
Gollancz). Very early in 2009 I'll be finishing off “The King of the Crags”, the second book in the series. It's already a complete draft, but it needs some tinkering before it can be sent for editing. “The Order of the Scales” (the third of the dragon trilogy) will probably keep me busy until the summer. After that I'm not sure. I have a surfeit of both plans and material, so we'll have to see where my editor wants us to go next.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Stephen Deas has worked as a systems designer and project manager for a number of technology-based aerospace companies and has reviewed books for the British SF Association's magazine Vactor. “The Adamantine Palace” is the author’s debut and is Book One of “an intelligent fantasy series involving dragons”. For more information, please visit the author’s
Official Website.

NOTE: For more author responses, please visit Fantasy Book Critic's 2008 Review/2009 Preview index
HERE.

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