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.
Tags: 2013 Debuts, Aliens, Debut Authors, Debut Authors Guest Series, Del Rey Books, Dire Earth Cycle, Firefly, Guest Posts, Jason M. Hough, Near Future, Post-Apocalyptic, Random House, Resident Evil, Science Fiction, Space Elevator, Space Opera, The Darwin Elevator, The Exodus Towers, The Plague Forge
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.
Tags: 2013 Debuts, 2013 Release, A Conspiracy of Alchemists, Alchemy, Aliens, Angry Robot, Angry Robot Books, Best Debuts, Between Two Thorns, Black Science, Brian McClellan, Chronicles of Light and Shadow, Debut Authors, Del Rey, Del Rey Books, Dire Earth Cycle, Fae, Fantasy, Gemsigns, Genetic Engineering, Gunpowder Fantasy, Historical Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Irish Mythology, Jason M. Hough, Jo Fletcher Books, Julianna Scott, Liesel Schwarz, London, magic, Michael Martinez, Near Future, Nightshade Books, No Return, Noir, Orbit Books, Powder Mage, Promise of Blood, Random House, Random House Books, Regency Fantasy, science fantasy, Science Fiction, Skyhorse Publishing, Space Elevator, Space Opera, Split Worlds, Steampunk, Steampunk Fantasy, Stephanie Saulter, Strange Chemistry, Strange Chemistry Books, The Daedalus Incident, The Darwin Elevator, The Holders, Urban Fantasy, Zachary Jernigan
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!
Tags: Alex Bledsoe, Debut Authors, Debut Authors Guest Series, Freya Robertson, Guest Posts, Jason M. Hough, Jaye Wells, Jennifer Williams, John Jackson Miller, Joyce Chng, Juliet E. McKenna, Kenny Soward, Laure Eve, Liz de Jager, Marianne de Pierres, Mhairi Simpson, Michael J. Sullivan, Names, Names A New Perspective, NANP, Patty Jansen, Ros Jackson, The Importance of Names, The meaning of Names, The Significance of Names, William King
The voting process on my latest reading poll closed last night, after two weeks of intense excitement and record after record. Once again, just as with the previous two polls that I’ve run, this was a humbling experience given the tremendous response from the authors and their fans and everyone else who helped make this new poll such a success.
Tags: 2013 Reading Challenge, A Discourse in Steel, Adrian Tchaikovsky, Angry Robot Books, Black Library, Blood of Nagash, Book Lists, Challenges, Cold Fire, Dan O'Shea, Dawn of the Jedi: Into The Void, Dire Earth Cycle, Egil & Nix, Eli Monpress, Epic Fantasy, Exhibit A Books, Fantasy, Gathering of the Lost, Helen Lowe, Jason M. Hough, Josh Reynolds, Kate Elliott, Kevin J. Anderson, magic, Neferata, Orbit Books, Paul S. Kemp, Penance, Rachel Aaron, science fantasy, Science Fiction, Seven Suns, Shadows of the Apt, Space Opera, Spiritwalker, Star Wars, Suspense, Sword and Sorcery, The Black and Gold, The Darwin Elevator, The Hidden Empire, The Spirit Rebellion, The Wall of Night, Thieves, Thrillers, Tim Lebbon, Time of Legends, Tor Books, Urban Action
In January and February, I ran two highly successful polls where I asked all the readers of the blog to help me pick my reading list for the following months. The first one was for novels, the second one for comics. I managed to meet the reading goals for the first of those polls, but am still progressing through the second one, mostly because I’ve been traveling a bit too much of late, and reading time has generally been at a premium due to work and more time devoted to my writing.
However, I should be done with it by the end of this month, so keep an eye out for updates on that.
In the meantime, here’s my next reading poll, and this one is for novels once again. Hit the break to find out more.
Tags: 2013 Most Anticipated, 2013 Reading Challenge, 25 In 2013, 51 For 2013, A Discourse in Steel, Adrian Tchaikovsky, Agents of Artifice, Angry Robot Books, Ari Marmell, Assassin's Apprentice, Betsy Dornbusch, Billy Fox, Black Library, Blood of Nagash, Book Lists, Cold Fire, Dan O'Shea, David Annandale, Dawn of the Jedi, Del Rey Spectra, Dire Earth Cycle, Eberron, Egil & Nix, Eli Monpress, Elspeth Cooper, Epic Fantasy, Exhibit A Books, Exile, Fantasy, Farseer, Gathering of the Lost, Helen Lowe, Heroic Fantasy, James Swallow, Jason M. Hough, John C. Scott, Josh Reynolds, Kate Elliott, Kevin J. Anderson, List Polls, Magic The Gathering, Marsheila Rockwell, Neferata, Nightshade Books, Orbit Books, Paul S. Kemp, Penance, Planeswalker, Playing Tyler, Pocket Books, Poll, Rachel Aaron, Reading List, Reading List Poll, Recon One-Five, Richard Lee Byers, Robin Hobb, Science Fiction, Self-published, Seven Eyes, Seven Suns, Shadows of the Apt, Simon & Schuster, Space Marine Battles, Space Opera, Spiritwalker, Star Trek, Strange Chemistry, T. L. Costa, The Black and Gold, The Darwin Elevator, The Death of Antagonis, The Hidden Empire, The Spirit Rebellion, The Wall of Night, Tie-in fiction, Tim Lebbon, Top 25 Series 2013, Tor Books, Trinity Rising, Urban Fantasy, Wild Hunt, Wizards of the Coast, Young Adult