New: TOMMY CATKINS by Stephen Palmer

TOMMY CATKINS by Stephen Palmer

1915
Following a horrific experience at Verdun, Private Tommy Catkins – shell-shocked and suffering head injuries – is sent to a mysterious island hospital in Wiltshire, where he is subjected to the primitive treatments of the era.

But the island appears to be a portal to the enigmatic land of Onderwater, where lives a race of blue-skinned people with tails.

Will Tommy be tempted by Onderwater, or will the love of Nurse Vann pull him back to reality, and recovery?

“One of the most inventive and imaginative fantasy writers I know of…” Teresa Edgerton

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US – Amazon UK – Amazon Canada – Barnes and Noble – Kobo – Apple – Smashwords

Buy this book in print (ISBN: 0995752265): Amazon US – Amazon UK – Amazon Canada – and other booksellers
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New editions of Keepers of the Peace and more

Keepers of the Peace

Written thirty years ago, and first published by Gollancz in 1990, my first novel has new editions in print and ebook:

Keepers of the Peace
Ebook from: Amazon US – Amazon UK – Barnes and Noble – Kobo – Apple – Smashwords
Print (ISBN: 172280291X): Amazon US – Amazon UK – and other booksellers

Jed Brindle is an alien. At least, that’s what they call him on Earth. He’s really a colony-bred soldier – augmented with cyborg implants – with the Extraterran Peacekeeping Force, fighting for control of what used to be the United States.

When he and his squad are sent behind enemy lines on a kidnap operation, it isn’t long before things start to go wrong. Marooned in the desert with two wounded comrades and his quarry, Jed’s mission becomes not just a struggle for survival but also a journey to rediscover the quiet, reliable farm boy he was before he became a machine for killing.

“It has been several years since a first novel has grabbed me the way Keith Brooke’s Keepers of the Peace did. It’s a well-crafted, very personal look at the way war changes (and doesn’t change) a kid from the sticks … It is smooth, clean and elegant; a very straightforward book whose writing recalls the 1950s Heinlein, telling the tale without getting in the way.” (Tom Whitmore, Locus)


Also just out: new paperback editions of my 2nd, 3rd and 4th novels

ExpatriaAmazon US – Amazon UK

Expatria IncorporatedAmazon US – Amazon UK

Lord of StoneAmazon US – Amazon UK

   


Dislocations launched at Eastercon

Lovely to make an albeit brief appearance at the UK’s national science fiction convention on March 30th to mark the publication of Dislocations, the first in a four-part novella series written with long-time collaborator Eric Brown. Many copies were signed at the convention, and afterwards Eric and I spent a few hours in Bradford discussing life, publishing, and plans for the third and fourth novellas in the series (the second having been recently completed, and due to be published later this year).

Copies are available direct from the publisher, as well as the usual places:

signing_dislocations

The book:

Project Kon-tiki, the world’s first extra-solar colony expedition, is just weeks away from departure, and tension is mounting at Lakenheath Base.

Psychologist Kat Manning is one of the eighteen specialist whose clone will be sent to the stars, and her job is to work with the original specialists, the ‘left behind’, to monitor and support them through their dislocation… But when Kat is kidnapped by the Allianz, a faction opposed to the colonisation program, more than just her safety is at stake. The entire mission is in jeopardy.

In Dislocations, the first volume of the Kon-tiki Quartet, Brown and Brooke tell the story of humankind’s last-gasp efforts to reach the stars, set against the backdrop of an Earth torn apart by looming environmental disaster.


New: The Spacetime Pit Plus Two by Stephen Baxter and Eric Brown

The Spacetime Pit Plus Two by Stephen Baxter and Eric Brown

The Spacetime Pit Plus Two by Stephen Baxter and Eric BrownThe Spacetime Pit Plus Two collects three collaborative stories by two of science fiction’s finest writers. Never before published in one volume, the triptych showcases the authors’ ability to create narratives on a vast scale, and yet never to lose sight of the all-important human element.

In the award-winning ‘The Spacetime Pit’, spacer Katerina Wake crash-lands on a primitive alien world and faces certain death unless she can harness her ingenuity, and technical know-how, to bend the destiny of an entire race to her will…

‘Green-Eyed Monster’ follows Richard as he wakes up after a night on the tiles to find himself inhabiting the body of a toad – and that’s just the start of his troubles…

In ‘Sunfly’, Onara and her people live on a world very different from our own – a vast ribbon encircling a sun. But a change is coming to the land, a mysterious narrowing that threatens not only the stability of her world, but the very order of everything she has taken for granted.

Buy this ebook from: Amazon US – Amazon UK – Barnes and Noble – Kobo – Apple– Smashwords

Buy this book in print (ISBN: 0995752257): Amazon US – Amazon UK – and other booksellers
*Please note that due to a glitch at Amazon the UK print edition was not available at the time of publishing this post; Amazon are investigating and we’re hoping it will go live very soon!

“With every passing year, the oft-made remark that Baxter is Arthur C Clarke’s heir seems more and more apt” – SFX

“Eric Brown spins a terrific yarn” – SFX 

“There’s real beauty and excitement to Baxter’s writing” – Starburst

“British writing with a deft, understated touch: wonderful” – New Scientist on Eric Brown


Two new paperbacks from Garry Kilworth

Published today: the first ever paperback editions of two landmark collections from Garry Kilworth (described by New Scientist as “arguably the finest writer of short fiction today, in any genre” and by Fear as “one of the most significant writers in the English language”).

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Moby Jack and Other Tall Tales by Garry Kilworth

Moby Jack and Other Tall TalesMoby Jack and Other Tall Tales is a collection of stories that span some 20 years. They cover a variety of themes and are more different, in style as well as content, than they are similar. As the author himself says, “Some writers follow a path of sameness in order to satisfy their readers’ desire for familiarity. To me that’s like going to same country for your holiday every year. It’s not me. I like going somewhere different every time.”

The tales range from Chinese fantasy (‘Death of the Mocking Man’) to science fiction (‘Moby Jack’), to fantasy (‘The Sculptor’) to horror (‘The Megowl’) to ghost stories (‘Hunter’s Hall’) – but for the most part they’re just plain odd and refuse to slot into any set category.

This edition of Moby Jack also includes the previously uncollected ‘When the Music Stopped’ by Christian Lehmann and Garry Kilworth.

So, if you like weird stories, dark comedy and tales where characters get into impossible situations and only occasionally extract themselves, then you’ll probably enjoy this volume.

Buy this book (ISBN: 0995752230): Amazon US – Amazon UK – and other booksellers

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Tales from the Fragrant Harbour by Garry Kilworth

gkfhThese short stories were all penned in and around Garry Kilworth’s time in Hong Kong.

The collection is split half-and-half into general fiction stories and supernatural tales. They were all inspired by the people and places of that magical effervescent city, not forgetting its surrounding mountains and countryside, and the myriad islands that come within its sphere. There are tales from Chinese viewpoints and stories about the lives of expatriates.

If you read no other general fiction stories, then you must try ‘Typhoon’ with its fearless heroine the indomitable Elizabeth, or the imperturbable reptile catcher from ‘The Snake-Man Cometh’. If your taste is not for the fantastic, you would be poorer in spirit for not experiencing the poignancy of ‘The Hungry Ghosts’ and ‘Memories of the Flying Ball Bike Shop.’

If you have never been to Hong Kong, enter it page by page. If you have, retrace its familiar corners.

There’s plenty of variation to satisfy most readers’ literary appetites. Fans of elegant short fiction and Far Eastern culture will find this very worthwhile reading.

Buy this book (ISBN: 0995752249): Amazon US – Amazon UK – and other booksellers

“Garry Kilworth is arguably the finest writer of short fiction today, in any genre.” (New Scientist)

“His characters are strong and the sense of place he creates is immediate.” (Sunday Times)

“Kilworth is a master of his trade.” (Punch)

“Kilworth is one of the most significant writers in the English language.” (Fear)


The Kon-tiki Quartet: new from Eric Brown and Keith Brooke in 2018/2019

I’m very pleased to announce that Eric Brown and I have just signed up to write The Kon-tiki Quartet, a set of four novellas to be published by the fabulous PS Publishing. The first, Dislocations, is due out in winter 2018, with the remaining three appearing at six-month intervals.

The Quartet charts humankind’s first extra-solar colony mission to a planet orbiting the star 19 Draconis – a series of high-tech stories rooted in humankind’s struggles to deal with a rapidly changing world, and featuring cloning, travel to the stars, alien encounters, telepathy, and much more.

Eric and I are currently putting the finishing touches to the first two novellas, and will pick up on writing the third and fourth during 2018. It’s great to be working together again!


Kit Reed: The Story Until Now

Terribly sad to report the passing of friend, family, and also infinity plus author, Kit Reed.

Over on Facebook, Keith Brooke posted this:


Kit Reed saw something in me, and for the longest time I puzzled over what it might be. Why me? What was it that elevated me to the level of someone Kit noticed and included? Kit, who so sadly died at the weekend, surrounded herself by truly great people, to the extent that it was impossible for her to tell an anecdote without it sounding like namedropping – but for Kit and Joe, “When Joss said this”, “When Daniel stayed over”, “When Sigourney/Chip/Brian dropped in”, this was normal, day to day life. So, Kit Reed, legendary writer of stories no-one else could even approach being able to write, had seen something in me and brought me into her fold.

Over the years, Kit and I did so much together, it seemed. She was a constant in my life, always enriched it, and was an absolute inspiration. We’d go for weeks without talking, then there would be flurries of messaging by email, MOO, Facebook or whatever the current medium was. Bitchy, insightful, wonderfully funny; supportive, warm, and always telling stories – life was story to Kit.

So many happy, inspiring memories of meeting up with Kit and Joe over the years. Dinners with friends and family. Sitting in the sun while Joe sketched Colchester Castle in his hardbound notebook and we’d all share stories and plans. That time after spending too long with a rather boorish colleague when we hid away in that splendid Lawn Avenue house and watched Guardians of the Galaxy like giggling schoolkids. All those evenings when I’d get home from my dayjob and log on to the online environment where I was guesting on Kit’s anonymous writing class and we’d spend hours debating and fine-tuning story with ‘the kids’. Turning up at London’s Reform Club and being refused entrance because the only pair of trousers I had that weren’t jeans were still too jeans-like for their dress code – Joe had to come down and wrangle my entrance with his don’t-dare-mess-with-me charm, and then we sat at a table with a view and watched the comings and goings of the club’s members for hours. Lunch in the Algonquin, and then chatting on the train ride all the way back up to New Haven, Kit managing to simultaneously provide a running commentary on the passing scenery, tell brilliantly funny stories, and write story critiques on her tiny laptop along the way. And, our most recent visit, Debbie and I stopping over in the wonderful Middletown house on the first proper night of our honeymoon, Kit taking us through the steps of cooking and eating lobster because she knew we’d be eating an awful lot of it on our three-week drive around New England. And we did. We ate an awful lot of lobster and we ate it well, because Kit knew exactly how to equip us for our journey with the most important skills – and just how many of Kit’s students, collaborators, friends and colleagues can say exactly that? She equipped us all.

The real lesson is, Kit didn’t just see something in me. She saw it in everyone (except for the fakes: she was merciless with them). We were all special to her, and all capable of genius, of greatness in our lives, and she was adept at bringing that out in people. Kit just happened to be one of those people who delivered greatness on a daily basis.

Kit, just as you wished, you’ll be remembered in the spaces, those gaps when you would have chipped in with a story, those pauses when someone else would have been sympathetic and you’d just tell us to get the hell on with what needs doing, the times when there’s no message from you waiting in the in box any more.

And now, as Kit would no doubt tell me, I have work to do, stories to tell, and no-one else is going to tell my stories but me.

I think it was Mack who described us all as Kit’s co-conspirators in life. I can’t think of a better description, and I’m incredibly proud to have been a co-conspirator with Kit.

Friend, collaborator, family, inspiration, and sorely missed.


Of course, one of the best ways to celebrate an author is to read their work, and for Kit, the best way to do this would be to dip into her ‘Great big book of stories’, The Story Until Now (Wesleyan), or her latest novel, Mormama (Tor, published this summer). She was bloody good.


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