Check out the goooorrrgeeeouussss Dan Zollinger art for “Gotham Jazz,” my world for the Storium role-playing engine. (Still in gamma, but coming RSN)!
It’s Karen Memory book day!
*Oils up the shiny hype machine.* *Brings it to pressure.* *Checks that all gears are functional.*
So I wrote this book, see?
It’s a steampunk adventure set in a fictional city in the Pacific Northwest during the Alaskan Gold Rush.
It stars a young woman who goes by the house name of Prairie Dove, which should give you an idea what she does for a living. She’s kind of a badass, and she has badass friends. But rather than natter on about it, I’m going to give you a link to an excerpt!
Karen Memory can be purchased at Barnes and Noble, Amazon (Kindle), Amazon, and at your preferred local or online retailer. (Or they can order it for you.) The ebook is available through Kobo and the rest of the usual suspects.
There will be an audiobook from Recorded Books, which should be available soon!
Karen Memory has been getting fantastic reviews, including a starred review from Library Journal. It’s #6 in the Kindle store for Steampunk this morning, and I’ve promised to humiliate myself on the internet if it goes to #1.
It’s a book and I’m thrilled!
As I write this, Karen Memory is the #12 steampunk book on Amazon. I learned this morning that it’s already been sent back for a rush reprint. because the first run sold out, and honestly, I’d love for Karen to be the #1 steampunk book on Amazon. So if you are an Amazon shopper, and you were planning on buying the book anyway,
If you are not an Amazon shopper and you want to read Karen Memory, please do order it through your library, preferred online retailer, or–best of all!–local retailer!
It formally goes on sale tomorrow, though there are scattered reports of it being on some bookstore shelves already.
Yesterday I also learned that I had four things on the Locus recommended reading list for 2014. Those four things are The Steles of the Sky, “The Hand is Quicker,” “Covenant,” and “This Chance Planet.” truepenny‘s glorious The Goblin Emperor is on there, too, and scott_lynch‘s delightful ”A Year and a Day in Old Theradane.”
And a lot of other really awesome stuff as well.
And stillsostrange and I ran 13.1 miles in Galveston yesterday, and then went out dancing last night with Austin friends.
Er. Two book slide, make that. My weapon of choice offers no greater physical harm than papercuts, and maybe a bump on the head if you’re careless. But I feel like a John Woo character right now, for certain.
Finally, finally, finally. Karen Memory comes out next week. Tuesday, to be sure, though it’s available for pre-order now, and those numbers count towards the first week. It’s a great big shiny Weird West steampunk adventure about a girl, a battle mecha built out of a sewing machine, and a really annoying deaf white cat. Among some other things.
It’s getting consistently better reviews than anything I’ve ever done before.
And, finally, Shattered Pillars is available in long-awaited trade paperback right now! Already! As you are reading this! (Steles of the Sky will be joining it this summer.)
Buy my book!
Get out your notebooks, guys, I’ve got a lot of news.
Save the date-type object! I will be appearing at Pandemonium Books in Central Square in Cambridge, Massachusetts at 7 pm on THURSDAY FEBRUARY 12th (That’s Boskone Eve) for a Karen Memory book launch! My beloved Scott Lynch will be with me, shilling his own stuff!
There will be cookies!
Also, I finished a draft of “The Bone War” today and wrote nearly 3,000 words doing it. My butt hurts. But I’m very pleased with how it seems to be coming out/shaping up. It’s a Bijou story, it involves paleontologists and making fun of academics, and I’ll let you know when you can read it somewhere!
Here is the tea that helped:
It’s Upton gen mai cha, and I bought the teacup in Iceland. Because I’m somebody who has been to Iceland now.
Winter is finally here, speaking of ice (see what a good segue that was?!), and the cold made the windows pretty last night, I brought some proof.
Another very fine review of Karen Memory by Russell Letson in this month’s Locus. It’s not online, but here’s my favorite bit:
“Karen Memory is a delight, a tour-de-force of historical reimagining and character creation, and a ripping yarn full of surprises…”
I’ll take it!
Gardner Dozois has announced the Table of Contents for his THIRTY-SECOND annual YBSF.
I may be in it twice.
This may make up for the cold I’m nursing.
The Year’s Best Science Fiction, Thirty-Second Annual Collection,
Edited by Gardner Dozois
The Fifth Dragon, Ian McDonald (Reach for Infinity)
The Rider, Jérôme Cigut (F&SF)
The Days of the War, as Red as Blood, as Dark as Bile, Aliette de Bodard (Subterranean Online)
The Burial of Sir John Mawe at Cassini, Chaz Brenchley (Subterranean Online)
The Regular, Ken Liu (Upgraded)
The Woman from the Ocean, Karl Bunker (Asimov’s)
Shooting the Apocalypse, Paolo Bachigalupi (The End Is Nigh)
Weather, Susan Palwick (Clarkesworld)
The Hand Is Quicker, Elizabeth Bear (The Book of Robert Silverberg)
The Man Who Sold the Moon, Cory Doctorow (Hieroglyph)
Vladimir Chong Chooses To Die, Lavie Tidhar (Analog)
Beside the Damned River, D.J. Cockburn (Interzone)
The Colonel, Peter Watts (Tor.com)
Entanglement, Vandana Singh (Hieroglyph)
White Curtain, Pavel Amnuel (F&SF)
Slipping, Lauren Beukes (Twelve Tomorrows)
Passage of Earth, Michael Swanwick (Clarkesworld)
Amicae Aeternum, Ellen Klages (Reach for Infinity)
In Babelsberg, Alastair Reynolds (Reach for Infinity)
Sadness, Timons Esaias (Analog)
West to East, Jay Lake (Subterranean Online)
Grand Jeté (The Great Leap), Rachel Swirsky (Subterranean Online)
Covenant, Elizabeth Bear (Hieroglyph)
Jubilee, Karl Schroeder (Tor.com)
Los Pirates del Mar de Plastico (Pirates of the Plastic Ocean), Paul Graham Raven (Twelve Tomorrows)
Red Light, and Rain, Gareth L. Powell (Solaris Rising 3)
Coma Kings, Jessica Barber (Lightspeed)
The Prodigal Son, Allen M. Steele (Asimov’s)
God Decay, Rich Larson (Upgraded)
Blood Wedding, Robert Reed (Asimov’s)
The Long Haul, from the Annals of Transportation, The Pacific Monthly, May 2009, Ken Liu (Clarkesworld)
Shadow Flock, Greg Egan (Coming Soon Enough)
Thing and Sick, Adam Roberts (Solaris Rising 3)
Communion, Mary Anne Mohanraj (Clarkesworld)
Someday, James Patrick Kelly (Asimov’s)
Yesterday’s Kin, Nancy Kress (Tachyon)
I see three Hieroglyph and three Reach for Infinity stories on that list, along with two apiece for Upgraded and Solaris Rising 3. Do I detect a brewing Best Anthology award rivathelry for next year?
Which give me elegant segue to my obligatory end of year shilling!
So here’s what I published in 2014.
“This Chance Planet,” Tor.com, October 22, 2014 (Ellen Datlow, ed.)
“The Hand is Quicker”, The Book of Silverberg, Gardner Dozois, ed., 2014
“You’ve Never Seen Everything,” The End is Now, John Joseph Adams and Hugh Howey, ed., 2014
“Terroir,” Harvest Season, Bill Roper, ed., November 2014
“Covenant,” Hieroglyph,Kathryn Cramer and Edward Finn, ed., October 2014
“No Place to Dream, But a Place to Die,” Upgraded, Neil Clarke ed., September 2014
“Madame Damnable’s Sewing Circle,” Dead Man’s Hand, John Joseph Adams, ed., 2014
Steles of the Sky, Tor (edited by Beth Meacham)
One-Eyed Jack, Prime Books (edited by Paula Guran)
* Bear Elizabeth, Karen Memory. Tor. Feb. 2015. 352p. ISBN 9780765375247. $25.99; ebk. ISBN 9781466846340. SF
The Gold Rush town of Rapid City is just about what you would expect in a frontier community catering to the mining trade: rough, violent, and full of prostitutes. Karen is a “soiled dove” working at Madame Damnable’s establishment, where she and her sisters in trade serve a more respectable crowd than the poor girls who work the cribs at the waterfront. When one of those young women escapes and runs to Madame’s for help, she brings the wrath of the crib owner, Peter Bantle, on the house. Bantle, in addition to bring a vicious bully, seems to have a device that can control people’s minds.
Verdict Bear (Steles of the Sky; Blood and Iron) pumps fresh energy in the steampunk genre with a light touch on the gadgetry and a vivid sense of place. Karen has a voice that is folksy but true, and the entire cast of heroic women doing the best they can in an age that was not kind to their gender is a delight. Ably assisted by a U.S. Marshal and his Comanche posseman, Karen and the ladies kick ass.
Also on the morning wire–actually, this is a couple of days old, but I was at Windycon trying to be charming when it broke–Steles of the Sky is one of the Kirkus 100 Best Books for 2014!
Is this what it’s like to have a healthy relationship with Kirkus?
I like it. I really like it.