Blog Archives

NANP: Naming For Names

Joining me on the blog today for the final guest post of the 4th edition of Names: A New Perspective is this year’s debut author Liz de Jager, with her novel Banished which comes out very soon from Tor, less than a month in fact! It is one of the novels of the year that I’m very excited about. Liz is a great friend and a fellow, albeit former, book blogger, so that’s even more reasons for the excitement. Its always great to see bloggers and friends get a start on their publishing careers like this. Plus the concept of the book is extremely promising so I have very high hopes for it. Anyways, in one of her first blog posts for the book’s promotion, here’s what Liz has to say on the topic of names.

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NANP: On Choosing Names

Joining me today on the blog for Names: A New Perspective is one of 2013’s biggest debut authors, Jason M. Hough. Published by Del Rey Books/Random House, his Dire Earth Cycle trilogy is about a post-apocalyptic world brought on by the advent of an alien space elevator in Darwin, Australia in the near future. I’ve only read the first two books so far, The Darwin Elevator (review) and The Exodus Towers (review), but I have been impressed by both, and The Darwin Elevator even made my “Best Debuts of 2013” list. Both books are really good explorations of a human society that is struggling to survive in the face of a Resident Evil style viral epidemic and dwindling resources while at the same time also riven by the base natures of individuals who care only about power. I would recommend both books highly and will say that whatever Jason puts out next, I’ll definitely be reading it. In the meanwhile, while I figure out when to read the concluding novel in the trilogy, The Plague Forge, here’s what Jason has to say on the topic of names.

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Best Debuts of 2013

In a lot of ways, 2013 has been a fairly good year for debut novels, as much as 2012 was. There have been some really fantastic releases, and they have all continued an unofficial tradition of doing something different with the genres that they have been set in. I can say for certain that of all the debut novels I read this year, none of them have been quite what I expected. Some of these novels have been really, really good while a small handful have been disappointing.

I put together a list at the end of last year in which I ran through my top picks of all the debuts I’d read, and I found the experience to be quite rewarding, and a great help in figuring out just why these novels were so good beyond just writing up the reviews.

All in all, of the 20 debut novels I wanted to read this year as per my list (link), I read 18 of them. Here are the 8 books I consider to be the best of the bunch.

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NANP: Method To Madness

On Thanksgiving Day I bring to you Kenny Soward, the author of the GnomeSaga series and a regular short fiction writer, for the latest on Names: A New Perspective. I haven’t had a chance to read his work yet, the first GnomeSaga novel Rough Magic still awaits me on my iPad, but he’s certainly one of the more interesting authors I’ve been meaning to read for a while. Kenny is also a fellow contributor to the Manifesto: UF, which saw the publication of my short story Dharmayoddha and his story Gold Dust Woman was a stand-out story. Hopefully after reading this post you’ll be interested in his work as well. I certainly encourage you to check it out at least.

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NANP: The Sound of Names

Today I welcome debut author Laure Eve and her novel Fearsome Dreamer to Names: A New Perspective and ask her to share her thoughts on the importance of names in (her) fiction. A fellow cake and Haagen Dasz fanatic, she launched Fearsome Dreamer through Hot Key Books last month and even as all the praise rolls in, she is already hard at work on the sequel, coming next year. As a recent convert to urban fantasy, Fearsome Dreamer promises to be a really fun read and in anticipation of reading the book, I invited Laure to the blog and hope you enjoy her guest post as much as I did. Definitely one of the more fun guest posts I’ve had the pleasure of featuring here.

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“Names: A New Perspective” 4th Edition

A little over a year ago, I started a guest post series on the blog where I invited two authors every week to talk about names in fiction. I gave them a fairly open brief for it, to talk about what kind of naming conventions they used, what the names of their characters, etc meant, whether they went for certain resonance or what have you. The result was dramatic and outstanding. Every single guest post proved to be well-worth the read, to say the least, and I received tons of feedback from all of you, saying that you liked it.

In August, I posted the last guest post and then took a long break since I had kind of run out of authors to contact at the moment and just wanted to take some time off in general to let the whole idea gestate for a new version down the line. The result of that is this new edition of the series. I’ve spent more than three weeks getting all of this together, and despite some delays at my end, the authors have all been rather understanding, which has been great.

Enjoy the schedule!

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NANP: The Nuance In The Name

Today’s guest author for Names: A New Perspective is Ciara Ballintyne. I haven’t had a chance to read any of her work so far, since her first novel is still awaiting publication, but I enjoy reading her blog for insight into her writing process and her discussions. Her Deathhawk trilogy sounds great to me and look forward to reading it. Here’s what Ciara had to say on the topic of names.

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Best Debuts of 2012

This year has been an excellent year for debuts, whether it’s science fiction or fantasy or historical fiction or urban fantasy or noir or western or young adult or whatever. Some truly amazing authors have made themselves known, and many of these have gone on to impress with second novels also released this year. In this blog I take a look at the debut novels of the year that I just loved and would recommend far and wide to everybody.

I didn’t actually read that many debut novels this year (from 2012), so the list is going to be unfortunately small – only eight in total, which is why I’m going to do a straight list rather than a Top 6 and 6 Honourable Mentions as I had initially planned.

So let’s have at it, yeah?

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NANP: Names Are A Melody

Angry Robot Books launched their Young Adult imprint a few months, called Strange Chemistry. One of the first wave of launch titles includes the arabian-themed pirate fantasy The Assassin’s Curse by Cassandra Rose Clarke. This was my first taste of a YA novel in recent times, and I liked what I saw (my review). The novel shows a lot of promise and I’m waiting for the sequel to come out. In the meanwhile, Cassandra has an original novel coming out from Angry Robot as well, The Mad Scientist’s Daughter, and that one’s on my reading list for early next year. Should be good times! With her arabian-themed setting and characters, here’s what Cassandra had to say on the subject of names and their significance on today’s Names.

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Names: A New Perspective Part 2

A little late, but I finally have the schedule of posts down. Post-NaNoWriMo blues and a massive reviewing/reading backlog plus my Advent Reviews series has kept me rather busy. Which reminds me, I still need to do that NaNoWriMo “after-action” report too! Ack! You can read any of the previous posts by using the series tag: “Names A New Perspective“. The previous line-up of authors is here. So, without further ado, here you are.

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NANP: Friend or Foe

Today’s guest on Names: A New Perspective is Janet Edwards, who debuted earlier this year with Earth Girl, a novel I’ve been meaning to read for quite a while, having heard a lot of praise for it in some corners. As has been the trend throughout this series, Janet has a very unique and interesting approach to the names she has used in her novel. Reading her post made me rather excited to read the novel, which I will hopefully be able to do soon!

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NANP: The Naming Scheme

Welcome back to Names: A New Perspective after a long break! I was quite busy last month with my NaNoWriMo project, which is still ongoing for me, so I had little time to organise guest posts and stuff. Fear not though, I’m kicking off the “second wave” of the series today, starting off with Lee Collins, who wrote The Dead of Winter, one of the most fun books I’ve read this year, and a western urban fantasy with vampires to boot (my review). Seriously speaking, Lee Collins is in contention in my book for best debut of the year, since The Dead of Winter was such a damn good read. Angry Robot has done a great job this year with their debut authors. On the subject of names and their significance in narratives and settings, Lee had this to say:

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