Future Treasures: She Walks in Shadows, edited by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Paula R. Stiles

Monday, October 5th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

She Walks in Shadows-small She Walks in Shadows-back-small

Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Paula R. Stiles were the editors of the marvelous Innsmouth Magazine, which released its last issue last summer. But they haven’t been resting in the interim — if anything, in fact, it seems like they’ve revved their engines, releasing the Swords & Sorcery/Cthulhu anthology Sword & Mythos, and this brand new collection of Lovecraftian fiction and art from women creators.

She Walks in Shadow ships next week, and includes 25 short stories by Gemma Files, Penelope Love, Angela Slatter, Molly Tanzer, E. Catherine Tobler, Mary Turzillo, Wendy N. Wagner, and many others.

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Win a Copy of Carter & Lovecraft by Jonathan L. Howard

Sunday, October 4th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Carter & Lovecraft-smallJonathan L. Howard, author of the Kyth stories (BG 13 and 15) and the Johannes Cabal novels, is well know to Black Gate readers. We gave you a peek at his upcoming dark fantasy novel Carter and Lovecraft a few months ago.

Daniel Carter, ex-homicide detective, teams up with Emily Lovecraft, last known descendant of H.P. Lovecraft, to investigate a series of impossible deaths — and discovers the truth behind Lovecraft’s fiction, and horrors that make the terrible things he witnessed chasing a serial killer years ago seem very tame, indeed.

Now, with the generous support of the book’s publisher, Thomas Dunne Books, we’d like to offer you a lot more than just a peek at Carter & Lovecraft. We have a pair of advance review copies to give away to two lucky readers.

How do you enter? Just send an e-mail to john@blackgate.com with the subject “Carter & Lovecraft,” and a one-sentence suggestion for the ideal Lovecraft team-up — and what dark horrors your dream team should investigate. We’ll announce the winners the week before the novel is released, and present some of the best entries here.

Two winners will be drawn at random from all qualifying entries. All entries become the property of New Epoch Press. No purchase necessary. Must be 12 or older. Decisions of the judges (capricious as they may be) are final. Not valid where prohibited by law, or anywhere postage for a hefty trade paperback is more than, like, 10 bucks (practically, that means US and Canada).

Carter & Lovecraft will be published by Thomas Dunne Books on October 20, 2015. It is 320 pages, priced at $25.99 in hardcover and $12.99 for the digital edition.

Talking Over the Drowning City: An Interview with Christopher Golden, Co-Author of Joe Golem, Occult Detective

Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 | Posted by Derek Kunsken

Joe Golem Occult Detective-smallI’ve been e-interviewing different comics creators (indie comics guys Mirror Comics and graphic novelist-turned-TV producer Jay Odjick) as well as comic book editors (Xander Jarowey, Heather Antos, Jake Thomas, and Daniel Ketchum, all from Marvel Comics).

This time out, I wanted to chat with Christopher Golden, a best-selling author and one half of the writing team (along with Mike Mignola) on the 5-issue series Joe Golem: Occult Detective, from Dark Horse. Issue #1 comes out in November, but Dark Horse was kind enough to share an advanced view with Black Gate for this interview :)

Click on any of the artwork in this article for bigger versions.

Hey Christopher. Thanks for the chance to chat. I read a review copy of Joe Golem, Occult Detective, and really enjoyed it. I hadn’t seen the world of the Drowning City before, but it was compelling.

Glad you dug it. Mike and I spent a lot of time crafting this world, making sure all the weird pieces fit, so I’m really looking forward to seeing what readers think.

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Future Treasures: My Loaded Gun, My Lonely Heart by Martin Rose

Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Bring Me Flesh I'll Bring Hell-small My Loaded Gun My Lonely Heart-small

I missed the first novel in Martin Rose’s new undead private investigator series, Bring Me Flesh, I’ll Bring Hell (Talos, October 2014), and that’s beginning to look like a mistake. An intriguing mix of Raymond Chandler and George Romero, the first novel introduced us to “pre-deceased private investigator” Vitus Adamson, kept ambulatory only by hourly administrations of a powerful drug, who finds himself hot on the trail of a missing boy… one who bears a more-than-uncanny resemblance to his own long-dead son. Scott Kenemore called the novel “The shot in the arm that the zombie genre needs… Vitus Adamson shambles on the scene as an undead Sam Spade of the very best sort.”

As the second novel opens, Adamson is still picking up the pieces from the events of the first — not least of which is an unexpected return to the land of the living.

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Future Treasures: The Stephen King Companion: Four Decades of Fear from the Master of Horror by George Beahm

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

The Stephen King Companion Four Decades of Fear from the Master of Horror-smallI believe I’ve read more novels by Stephen King than by any other writer. King has done more to promote and publicize the horror genre — and, by association, his fellow horror writers — than any other person in the last half-century. His books are highly collectible, and he’s produced such an enormous body of work, some of it connected in enigmatic and cool ways, that he makes a fascinating study.

No surprise then that there have been many books about King. But I think George Beahm’s massive new volume The Stephen King Companion, an authoritative look at King’s personal life and professional career, from Carrie to The Bazaar of Bad Dreams, is something special. It’s mind bogglingly complete, with lengthy chapters dedicated to each of his major works, and crammed full of photos and interesting tidbits — including a 16-page color section devoted to Micheal Whelan’s striking cover art.

But best of all, it’s extraordinarily readable, packed to the brim with all kinds of fascinating details, such as the phone call between King and Don Grant that finally got King to agree to reprint The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, and how King saw his first photos of his father. This is the kind of book you pick up to check a quick detail, and wind up reading for hours. Highly recommended, for both dedicated fans and casual readers alike.

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Future Treasures: The Last Witness by K. J. Parker

Tuesday, September 29th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

The Last Witness-smallBestselling fantasy author K.J. Parker, author of The Scavenger trilogy and The Engineer trilogy, disclosed that he’s actually famed British novelist Tom Holt on the Coode Street Podcast on April 22. It was a revelation that stunned many (me included), as over the last 17 years Holt has continued his prolific output under his own name, while simultaneously writing over a dozen novels as K.J. Parker. That’s an impressive accomplishment. Parker’s latest release is the fifth book in Tor.com‘s new line of premium novellas. The Last Witness is a classic Parker tale, with a strong supporting cast of princes, courtiers, merchants, academics, and generally unsavory people.

When you need a memory to be wiped, call me.

Transferring unwanted memories to my own mind is the only form of magic I’ve ever mastered. But now, I’m holding so many memories I’m not always sure which ones are actually mine, any more. Some of them are sensitive; all of them are private. And there are those who are willing to kill to access the secrets I’m trying to bury…

The first four Tor.com novellas are:

The Sorcerer of the Wildeeps,
Witches of Lychford
Sunset Mantle

The Last Witness will be published by Tor.com on October 6, 2015. It is 144 pages, priced at $12.99 in trade paperback and $2.99 for the digital edition. The cover is by Jon Foster. Check out all ten Tor.com fall novellas (including sample chapters!) here.

Future Treasures: Rising Tide by Rajan Khanna

Saturday, September 26th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Rising Tide Rajan Khanna-smallRajan Khanna’s first novel Falling Sky, the tale of a post-apocalyptic North America filled with zeppelins, a plague-ravaged populace, and a pirate air city, was called “Like Hemingway meets The Walking Dead” by Tad Williams. Me, I didn’t need to wait for the reviews — I was sold at “pirate air city.”

The sequel, Rising Tide, arrives in two weeks, and it continues the tale of Ben Gold and Miranda, who has developed a test for the zombie virus… but when an old enemy attacks, there may not be time to perfect it.

Ben Gold sacrificed his ship in an effort to prevent pirates from attacking the hidden city of Tamoanchan. Now Malik, an old friend turned enemy, has captured Ben and Miranda — the scientist Ben loves. With Miranda held hostage, Ben has to do Malik’s dirty work.

Miranda has plans of her own, though. She has developed a test for the virus that turned most of the population into little more than beasts called Ferals two generations ago. She needs Ben’s help to rescue a group of her colleagues to perfect the test — but first they must rescue themselves.

When a terrible new disease starts spreading across Tamoanchan and people start dying, it seems there’s something more sinister afoot. Then an old enemy attacks. Can Ben fight off the invaders? And will it be in time to save anyone from the disease?

Rising Tide will be published by Pyr on October 6, 2015. It is 267 pages, priced at $17 in trade paperback and $11.99 for the digital edition. The cover is by Chris McGrath. Learn more at Rajan Khanna’s website here.

Future Treasures: Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe by Thomas Ligotti

Friday, September 25th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe-smallBack in 1990 I bought a remaindered copy of Songs of a Dead Dreamer at a Waldenbooks in Champaign, IL. I’d never heard of the author, Thomas Ligotti, but the book sounded kind of interesting. I added it to my to-be-read pile, where it was quickly buried, and years went by before I really thought of it again.

In those intervening years, I learned the name Thomas Ligotti. So did anyone who read Weird Tales, Grue, or other horror magazines in the late 80s and early 90s. He was a singularly unique talent, and his fame quietly grew during those decades. In fact, when I launched the first issue of Black Gate in the year 2000, I had more-or-less decided not to put the names of authors on the cover, to keep the artwork clean and give the magazine a unique look, but I talked to a few other editors to get their opinion first. One of them was Darrell Schweitzer, co-editor of Weird Tales.

“We never noticed a bit of difference in sales when we put authors names on the cover,” he confided. “Unless the name was Thomas Ligotti.”

Ligotti’s first two collections were Songs of a Dead Dreamer (1985) and Grimscribe: His Lives and Works (1991), both of which appeared first in small print-run hardcovers. Those editions — including the one I bought at Waldenbooks for three bucks — became highly prized collectors items. Both appeared in paperback, in June 1991 and October 1994, respectively. Those editions shortly went out of print, and also became became highly sought-after. In 2010 and 2011, after both volumes had been out of print for nearly two decades, Subterranean Press re-issued them with matching dust jackets. Those editions quickly sold out, and routinely command prices of $200-400 in the collectors market.

In short, if you wanted a print copy of Songs of a Dead Dreamer or Grimscribe any time in the last 20 years, you pretty much needed to be very wealthy, very lucky, or both. So you can understand why the impending release of Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe, an omnibus 464-page collection of both volumes in a handsome and affordable trade paperback from Penguin Classics, has generated excited buzz in horror circles.

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Check Out the Table of Contents for The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015, edited by John Joseph Adams and Joe Hill

Thursday, September 24th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015-smallAs anyone who’s paid attention to our regular magazine coverage or glanced at our bi-weekly Fantasy Magazine Rack could tell you, there’s far too much new fiction published each month for one person to keep up (unless you’re Rich Horton, of course).

Which is why our field has a long tradition of Best of the Year anthologies, created by a small fraternity of experienced editors who point us towards the most exciting and important fiction published each year — and the up-and-coming authors most worth our attention. And why I was so delighted when I discovered a brand new one launching this year: The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy, with the 2015 volume edited by Joe Hill, and the extremely capable (and busy) John Joseph Adams serving as Series Editor.

According to JJA’s website, the selection process began with him winnowing down the year’s fiction into the top eighty stories, which were then sent (blind) to Joe Hill. Joe selected the ten best SF and ten best fantasy stories, and that became the TOC for the 2015 volume.

The complete 80-story long list is here, and here’s the table of contents for The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015 — including stories from Sofia Samatar, Kelly Link, Nathan Ballingrud, Theodora Goss, Seanan McGuire, T.C. Boyle, and many others. The book goes on sale in two weeks from Mariner Books.

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Future Treasures: Souldrifter by Garrett Calcaterra

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Souldrifter-small Souldrifter-back-small

Garrett Calcaterra’s most recent posts for us were “Fantasy Clichés Done Right and “Can SF Save the World From Climate Change?” But in addition to all the investigative reporting he’s been doing for Black Gate, he’s also been managing a career as a fast-rising fantasy author. His novel Dreamwielder (2013), the opening book in The Dreamwielder Chronicles, is a terrific sword & sorcery adventure, widely praised by fans and critics alike. James P. Blaylock called it “fast-paced, colorful, and richly detailed… My kind of book,” and Tim Powers proclaimed it a “good solid fantasy adventure.”

Souldrifter, the long-anticipated second volume in the series, finally arrives next week. Emperor Guderian’s empire has fallen, and young Queen Makarria finds herself in grave danger. The Old World Republic is demanding that she form a new empire, one she would rule as their puppet. When she refuses, the Old World threatens war… and sends a dangerous spy into the heart of her court. Wendy Wagner, author of Skinwalkers, describes it as “packed with sorcerers, spies, and high-stakes intrigue… a real page-turner.”

Souldrifter will be published by Diversion Publishing on September 29, 2015. It is 298 pages, priced at $15.99 in trade paperback and $4.99 for the digital edition. Get more details at Garrett’s website here.

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