Drive-by recs

Pausing in my not-panicking to recommend two delicious fantasy novels that will totally make you a better, happier person. Possibly. Here they are:

1) The Copper Promise by Jen Williams – I bought this after I saw the author in a panel at FantasyCon (she was magnificent) and then bought it extra hard when I saw the front cover, for it was beautiful and there was a dragon and the words ‘let sleeping gods lie’.

If that sounds like the sort of book that you would like then I am willing bet Internet pennies that you won’t be disappointed by the words inside. It’s all the joy of traditional fantasy with the adventuring and the teamness and the taverns and the adventures and amazing places and impossible odds and the banter and the sword-fighting and a dragon, and none of the rubbish stuff like sexist bullshit, wondering where all the women went, or thinking “well, I’m sure that was an interesting D&D campaign while you were playing it…”

Some bits are extra spectacular: the whole opening sequence in the Citadel was creepy good, and there is a delightful lady called Holly who makes magic glass things and she was my favourite.

And it is a complete story with an ending at the end not a cliffhanger, hurrah! But also the sequel is out very soon, hurrah!

2) Guns of the Dawn by Adrian Tchaikovsky – Obviously it’s only February so possibly I’m jumping the gun (haha! …shusht) but if you read only one fantasy book this year, you should read this one. Why? Because if it sells lots, there will be sequels! And then I will have more of the flintlock fantasy of my heart. And I will have whole hours of happiness and you wouldn’t want to take that away from me, would you?

Have you ever read Pride and Prejudice and thought, yes, this is excellent, but I wonder what it would be like if the Napoleonic Wars were still going on and Britain was losing so badly that it was force to begin conscripting women and Lizzy had to go off to war?

(Or, as Adrian puts it a smidgen more succinctly, Jane Austen meets Bernard Cornwell).

If you have thought of that, hurrah! Then this ithe book for you, and I’m well impressed at your imagination. If not, then it’s a brilliant idea and that is basically what happens in Guns of the Dawn (but not too much, it’s secondary world and Emily, the hero, is definitely not Lizzy) and it happens beautifully. I love the characters and I love the story and I love the romance (too much…I suspect it may actually have my favourite fantasy romance of all) and the swamps and the awareness of class and the magic and the not!Netherfield ball and I’m giving this book to people for their birthdays, because this is what people I love deserve.

And Guns of the Dawn is having a signing at London’s Forbidden Planet Megastore that is this Thursday and thus timed HORRENDOUSLY, since I’ll be in London on Thursday, though somewhere over the Atlantic when signing actually occurs, ALAS. But you don’t have to miss out! You should go, both for the book and the author, who is smashing and has relatively sensible opinions about Doctor Who.


To the Gallifrey-mobile!

I’m off to Gallifrey One aka Gally this weekend, and I’m trying to pack and I hate packing, so what’s actually happening is tons of productive procrastination and no packing. Mostly I hope it’s warm in Los Angeles. I am totally imagining the eye-rolling of certain friends as I type this since they have like fifty feet hills of snow to contend with, but it is COLD here and there is snow outside ON THE GROUND and it won’t go away. As a British person, it is my nature, nay my DUTY to find weather that won’t change HIGHLY SUSPICOUS and to moan about it as often as I can.

But, yes, Gally! I shall be there and so will many other people and so will Kat and Erika and Deb, and we’ll have Verity! stuff to give away. By which I mean ribbons and wrist bands, and you should ALL HAVE ONE OF EACH. And mine are the best ones, so you should ask me for them. (Last sentence in no way a cunning plan to get rid of this stuff that’s been cluttering my office for the past four months.)

I’ll also be doing a couple of panels which are these ones:

The Changing Face of Doctor Who: Program E, Friday 9.30pm

The Missing Companions: Program C, Sunday 4pm

And you can see all the Verities’ schedules over here, and the whole Gallifrey schedule here. My main aim of the con is to be v brave and say complete and non-embarrassing sentences to Rachel Talalay. And also bottle some California sunshine so I can take it home and use it to defeat winter.

So looking forward to this weekend. Gallifrey One is ridiculous and relaxed and so well-organised and has so much amazing cosplay and so many wonderful friends, mostly ones I only get to see once or twice a year, if I’m lucky.

Things I did elsewhere on the Interwebs:

  • Last week’s Verity was a roundtable on fanworks. We had guests!
  • I participated in a Mind Meld at SF Signal talking about the intersection and influence between computer games and genre fiction. It’s a great article, loads on interesting perspectives, also it is DANGEROUS. After I read Lou Anders’ I was at serious risk of starting a new Skyrim game to play as suggested and was only saved by my amazing iron willpower and maybe a desire for cake.
  • I’ve been Pinteresting! This is actually the fault of Erika and others talking about how jigsaws are all calming and stuff, and I’m not a jigsaw person, but through whatever leaps of non-logic my brain went from jigsaws to suggesting putting pictures of loads of stuff I like together for cheeringness. Mostly I’m pinning Stuff that make me yay, and Doctor Who awesomeness.

Things that are awesome and everyone should know about:

Farewell! And hope to see some of you at Gally!