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Sunday, August 19, 2012

Spotlight on the BIG September Releases, David Weber, Brent Weeks, Ken Follett and Peter Hamilton (with comments by Liviu Suciu)



The slimmest of the four at ~600 pages of which some 540 are text and some 40 present the roughly 900 named characters, David Weber's 6th Safehold novel, Midst Toil and Tribulation, will be published on September 18 by Tor. A superb return to form after the good but not great How Firm a Foundation, the book marks the settling of the series in the full planetary conflict mode.

A review around its publication date with some thoughts on Goodreads for now and the top sf of the year for me to-date, though more properly I should call it the top epic of the year as its epic-ness outweighs its sfnality by a lot. Reviews of earlier books in the series can be found in our Review Index.

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At close to 700 pages, Brent Weeks' 2nd Lightbringer novel, The Blinding Knife, will be published on September 11 by Orbit. Currently reading it, I can say that so far it is as good as expected with the same narrative pull that catapulted the author to the top-tier list of my favorite authors and made any of his books an asap read on receive.

A full review around publication time - this one may show earlier in stores as Orbit's books occasionally do - and initial thoughts on Goodreads as soon as I finish it in the next several days.

Edit: As per this interview with the author, the series will be a tetralogy not a trilogy as originally announced and then back to the Night Angel universe!

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At a reported 950+ pages, Ken Follett's 2nd Century Trilogy novel, Winter of the World, will be published on September 18 by Dutton. I quite loved the first volume and I am really looking forward to another door-stopper epic and the rise and fall of the fortunes of its large character cast. This one I plan to get on publication, so look for a review a week or so later.

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Finally, at about 1100 pages, the biggest of all, Peter Hamilton's standalone, Great North Road, will be published in the UK by Tor.uk with a December US publication by Random House.

I read the book a while ago and I liked a lot (!) from it, though I thought that about 400 pages of its parochial Newcastle detective story that takes over 500 pages could have been cut for a much stronger novel overall. A full review in late September with my thoughts on Goodreads for now.

8 comments:

Harvee Lau said...

I don't read much fantasy or sci fi, but if I did, I'd be interested in these!

Bob Milne said...

The Safehold series looks really interesting, but I'm still stuck on the first book, so I've tried not to read much about the rest of the series.

Follett's trilogy is something I might save for those long winter nights. I find I need to read him in small doses, but Pillars of the Earth and World Without End were amazing.

Liviu said...

@Harvee - Winter of the World is epic historical fiction

@Bob - in OAR it is best to start from page 70 or so and ignore the beginning; the bishops meeting that decides the future of a Charisian province and the assassination atempt on Cayleb that Merlin thwarts are the real start

shaneo52 said...

Hey Liviu, How far in the future is The Great North Road? I mean it has modern day helicopters on the cover?

Liviu said...

there is a timeline at the end - the founder of the North dynasty is injured in Iraq in 2003 and the main event involving one of his clone/sons takes place in 2121; the action of the book takes place in 2143

among other "goodies" there is the ten-in-one gene splice which allows the very rich who can afford it to have ten years pass for them to age normally one, so some people can live quite a long time

Liviu said...

oops, timeline is at the beginning of the book

Mark said...

From the cover of the Hamilton book you would not be expecting a detective story - I'm thinking more near future espionage/future war thriller type book. Hope the whole thing is worth reading - I'm looking forward to your full review.

Liviu said...

Personally i found the detective story (takes about 500/1100 pages) less necessary especially at that length; it is a way for the author to have action and dialect in his hometown Newcastle but nothing more really

The rest is worth it though and there are some highlights in the detective story too

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