It’s publication day again. And that means books! Like a dog chasing a car it’s impossible not to get excited every time one of these comes around. Especially when we have two such great books being published. One fantasy, one science fiction, both brilliant.
You’ve heard of Arthur C. Clarke, right? In 1971, he wrote a novella called “A Meeting with Medusa” featuring a man named Howard Falcon exploring the gas clouds of Jupiter in a hot-air balloon and discovering the life-forms that live there. An instant classic, it ended too soon, but now we can all find out what happened next . . .
The Medusa Chronicles is a novel of the unfolding rivalry between Mankind and Machine, spanning centuries and the spaces of the solar system – and leading at last to a future neither could have envisaged. Written by Alastair Reynolds and Stephen Baxter (who has previously co-written novels with Arthur C. Clarke) this stays true to the original and carries on the story to a thrilling conclusion.
‘Falcon, this is not a war – it never was – any more than spring wages war on winter. And we will replace you, as spring replaces winter . . .’
The 2080s: dirigible pilot Commander Howard Falcon is left crippled by a crash. Experimental cyborg surgery leaves him with superhuman capabilities but isolated from mankind . . .
The 2090s: Falcon pilots a solo mission into the clouds of Jupiter, where no natural human could follow . . .
The 2130s: Adam, a prototype Autonomous Deutsch-Turing Algorithmic-Heuristic Machine, mining ice in the outer reaches of the solar system, and faced by the destruction of the its fellows, feels the stirring of emotion . . .
As centuries unfold Howard Falcon, neither human nor machine, uniquely lonely, must bridge two orders of creation – and find a way to avert a catastrophic interplanetary war.
‘Strong imagination and a capability for awe abound in the work of Stephen Baxter’ The Times Literary Supplement
‘Al Reyonlds is the mastersinger of the space opera’ The Times
And now to ask the same question: You’ve heard of The Witcher, right? That mega popular game that has spawned sequels and imitators, and continues to win awards and praise from everyone? Of course you have! And we’re sure you know it is based on a series of novels by a Polish author? Of course you do! And we’re also sure you know that the next novel in the series is out now? Of course you do . . . now! Because it is. Out now.
The Tower of the Swallows by Andrzej Sapkowski is the sixth book chronicling the exploits of Geralt, the Witcher. This is exceptional fantasy – if Mieville did sword & sorcery, this would be it. So, jump in and get caught up. Remember: books are games for your mind!
The world has fallen into war. Giri, the child of prophecy, has vanished. Hunted by friends and foes alike, she has taken on the guise of a petty bandit and lives free for the first time in her life.
But the net around her is closing. Geralt, the Witcher, has assembled a group of allies determined to rescue her. Both sides of the war have sent brutal mercenaries to hunt her down. Her crimes have made her famous.
There is only one place left to run.
The tower of the swallow is waiting . . .
‘Energetic and compelling’ Dreamwatch
‘Like Mieville and Gaiman, Sapkowski takes the old and makes it new’ Foundation