The OF Blog: Some upcoming 2009 releases

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Some upcoming 2009 releases

Adam Whitehead over at The Wertzone has an impressive list (with cover art in most cases) of 54 upcoming 2009 releases. A great many on his list are books I either own and enjoyed or I want to read in the near future. However, there were a few books on my want list of 2009 releases that weren't on his, so I thought I'd list those (and provide cover art when possible for those who like those). All dates are for U.S. releases.

Will Elliott, The Pilo Family Circus (3/1/09) - This is the U.S. release of Elliott's work. I received an ARC of this from Underland Press, a new publishing firm, a few months ago and I hope to read this in the next month or so and have a review ready around the release date.

Brian Evenson, Last Days (2/1/09) - This is an expansion of the P.S. Publishing novella, The Brotherhood of Mutilation. It is a very dark, literary fantasy and I plan on re-reading it before writing a review in the coming week.

Jo Graham, Hand of Isis (3/23/09) - Graham's second novel, set in the Egypt of the Ptolomies around the time of Cleopatra and Mark Antony. Graham's first novel, Black Ships, was a favorite of mine in 2008 and I have high hopes for this one. I plan on having a review of this ready sometime after I complete the review for her first book...

Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Angel's Game (6/16/09) - English translation of the second of four novels set in the Barcelona of the mysterious Cemetery of Lost Books. I reviewed the book last May for Amazon's Omnivoracious blog. Ought to be one of the more highly-anticipated titles of the year, especially for those who aren't genre-only readers.

Daniel Fox, Dragon in Chains (1/27/09) - New fantasy book written by British author Chaz Brenchley, using the pseudonym of Daniel Fox. Curious to see how this will be, so I might read/review it in the next few weeks, if I have the time.

Álvaro Uribe and Olivia Sears (eds.), Best of Contemporary Mexican Fiction (2/26/09) - Reviewed here. Nice anthology of short stories, some with a speculative element to them.

Michael Moorcock, Duke Elric (3/24/09) - This is the fourth in a series of I believe six reprint volumes of Moorcock's Elric stories. I've enjoyed reading the three previous volumes and will start work reading this one shortly.

Paul Melko, The Walls of the Universe (2/3/09) - Melko's second book, after 2008's Singularity's Ring. I have that other book; need to read it before deciding whether or not to read this one.

Jeff VanderMeer (ed.), Mapping the Beast: The Best of Leviathan and Album Zutique (6/29/09)
- Reprint that collects some of the best stories from previous anthologies VanderMeer has edited. Very curious about this one.

John Birmingham, Without Warning (2/3/09) - Not for me, perhaps for those who like John Ringo or Tom Kratman.

Bruce Sterling, The Caryatids (2/24/2009) - Very promise-looking SF novel involving an examination of the ethics of human cloning, among many other things. An almost-certain read before March.

Catherynne M. Valente, Palimpsest (2/24/2009) - I've enjoyed greatly virtually every single one of Valente's previous books, so this one will be a must-buy, if I don't receive a review copy before the release date.

James Morrow, Shambling Towards Hiroshima (2/1/09) - Just received this in the mail. Press kit describes this fictional attempt by the US Navy to create its own big-ass weapon to defeat the Japanese (after the Army used the A-Bomb) in the form of producing a biological weapon in the form of a huge, destruction-loving iguana. To do this, a B-movie star, Syms Thorley, is employed to act the role. Sounds very intriguing. It's short (170 pages for the galley proof), so I might read it this weekend.

Sarah Monette, Corambis (4/7/09) - Fourth and final volume in her The Doctrine of Labyrinths series. Since I've enjoyed the previous three volumes starring Felix Harrowgate and his half-brother Mildmay the Fox, I'm looking forward to this one as well.

Later Releases/Probable 2009 Releases (No cover art)

Andzrej Sapkowski, La dama del lago (Spanish, TBA) - This is the last volume of the Geralt series and it supposedly will be available in Spain before the year is out. It has been over two years since the penultimate volume, La torre de la golondrina, was released, and I believe there's been a Martin-like watch on the stores and websites for news of this book's release in Spanish translation.

Jeff VanderMeer, Finch (Autumn 2009) - This is the third and last volume in the Ambergris Cycle. VanderMeer is one of my favorite authors and the noir-like tone of the book, as described by the author ought to make for a gripping read for many.

Jesse Bullington, The Sad Tale of the Brothers Grossbart (August 2009) - Debut novel that first attracted interest (and then an agent and soon after, a publisher) after Bullington submitted his draft to VanderMeer to be examined and the story was then praised highly. From what little I've read about it, it is a clever sort of story that ought to appeal to a wide variety of readers. I know I want a copy of it.

David Anthony Durham, Acacia: The Other Lands (Autumn 2009) - Durham's first Acacia book, The War with the Mein, was an intelligently written epic fantasy opener with some wonderful character development to complement Durham's excellent prose. I have high hopes for this one when it is released.

In addition, there are three more anthologies/short fiction works edited by/written by Jeff and his wife Ann that I believe will be released in 2009 (no firm dates) - Last Drink Bird Head, The Kosher Guide to Imaginary Animals (ought to be an interesting take on Borges' bestiary, especially since I read the hilarious blog entry that led to the book deal), and The Leonardo Variations, a charity anthology to support the Clarion writing residency program.

Doubtless there are even more 2009 to add to both Adam and my lists, perhaps some could list them here or on their own blogs?


Aidan Moher said...

Nice list, Larry. I should work on putting together something similar.

On another note, could you recommend any novels that are similar in style/content/tone/etc... as Zafón's The Shadow of the Wind? I'm eagerly awaiting The Angel's Game, but would love something to tide me over until its release.

A Dribble of Ink

Lsrry said...

Hrmm...that's a challenge, as Zafón deliberately apes the style of 19th century writers such as Dickens and Balzac, among others. However, you could try reading some of Arturo Pérez-Reverte's novels, say the Alatriste novels (which are an homage of sorts to Dumas' Muskateer novels) or The Flanders Panel, which I hear is excellent.

I don't think I need to recommend Tim Powers to you, as I believe you're already a fan of his? What about Graham Greene? Have you read his The Power and the Glory? That is a very powerful bit of work that, while different from the Zafón, might be just as intense of a read?

Anonymous said...

Can't wait for the Zafon.

Btw, the cover art for the English translation is up on Amazon.

ediFanoB said...

Kudos! Larry. Great list. Maybe you are also interested in:

January 2009 Spotlight by Robert

Brian Lindenmuth said...

One of the things that I appreciate about you Larry is the lens that you view things through and how different it is from mine. This came out in our readings of Barlow's Sharp Teeth.

I say this because I've been pushing Last Days in the crime fiction community. I think that one way to take it is as a dark crime fiction story plus I really want the mystery/crime fiction community to get hip to Evenson.

Liviu said...

Very good list:

I read Pilo and I enjoyed it - you will never look at a clown the same after that one:)

I read Angel's Game in Spanish but I truly want an English translation. The book struck me as Dr. Faustus in Barcelona, darker and more fantastic than Shadows. Interesting to see if it will have the same success.

I binged on Chaz Brenchley last month reading all his 8 fantasies - though they should have been 5, but in the US they butchered his Outremer trilogy in 6 short half-books - and I became a huge fan. Outremer was great, while the duology Selling Water by the River had great style, though I did not enjoy the setting so much since harem politics leaves me cold.
Robert read Dragon and liked it, so I barely wait my copy

I loved Black Ships to my surprise, so I look forward to Hand of Isis though with some apprehension since I read many books about Cleopatra and I am curious how this will measure. The excerpt looked interesting.

I am looking forward to Acacia 2 since I liked Acacia 1 despite some major flaws especially in pacing.

Melko's first novel was a disappointment. Run of the mill sf adventure, predictable and boring, I read much better ones, but I will give a try to his second book since as with the first one, it is based on a novella I enjoyed.

I like Ringo - though lately he became a bit boring, same with RK Morgan which is his left wing analog in writing style, sex included - and Kratman - his video interview on Baen's author interviews by Blackmask is the highlight, but I do not like J. Birmingham. Just boring run of the mill alt mil-sf, maybe if you like Turtledove is a better comparison

From my 09 list, non-standard genre books - I want to read an interesting UK release The Juggler by S. Beaumont, who wrote the magnificent Thirteen about the adventures of a night shift taxi driver in Bristol. This one seems to be even more weird per description, and it is published by the small press Myrmidon that gave us the Booker nominated Gift of Rain, the sf humour Space Captain Smith and the historical epic Gladiatrix, in addition to a vampire book Robert recommended Piper and the aforementioned Thirteen.

Wm. said...

Larry, been meaning to ask. What did you think of 'Anathem'? It's been sitting on my shelf, and every other week or so I walk past and eye it warily, wondering if it's another turgid door stopper (as you call them).

Anonymous said...

Did VanderMeer change his plans/early ideas about the Ambergris books somewhere along the line? I thought I remembered him saying after Shriek that there would be two more forthcoming novels in the setting. I could very well be wrong, though.

- Zach H.

Lsrry said...


Thought it might be, but I was being lazy and kept the cover for the Spanish edition, since I figured Random House would reuse it for the English. Will check later to make sure, however.


Yeah, I've read Robert's monthly spotlights for a while now. He certainly covers quite a large chunk of the various subgenres, especially Urban Fantasy, I've noticed.


Thanks for the compliment. I can see the very strong crime element in it as well, but I was writing that post in a hurry and just forgot to mention that strong element to the story.


That book sounds interesting. I'll have to look into it later.


I haven't yet read Anathem. I plan on doing that some weekend later this month or in February. Might do it the day I schedule an MRI on my left knee, come and think of it.


Yes, VanderMeer said he decided to fold The Zamilon Files into Finch sometime about a year or two ago on his blog.

RobB said...

I'm really looking forward to the new Zafón, too. I finished SHadow of the Wind a few weeks ago and it immediately leapt to my top 10 of all time reads of forever.

Lsrry said...


It'll be interesting to see what many make of The Angel's Game, as it is much more genre-like than was The Shadow of the Wind. Looking forward to those reviews starting in June.

Anonymous said...

Sapkowski - why so long? Are there some problems with translation or translator?
I love the ending - how random and realistic it is. I almost envy you reading it for the first time.
I wish you could also read Jacek Dukaj somehow.

The first volume of Acacia is to be published in Polish this year. As well as Catherynne M. Valente's The Orphan's Tales: In the Night Garden. And I think I'll check that.
I should also read Zafon - both The Shadow of the Wind and The Angel's Game are out in Polish but it all has to wait after I get my PhD.

Lsrry said...

I think it is a combination of the books being re-issued (with much, much better covers) by a different publishing imprint and the translator being busy with a couple other projects. I see that not only is the final Geralt book in preparation, but that the Narrentum Trilogy will be published as well in the near future. Curious about that one, to say the least.

Sounds like quite a few good books are being translated into Polish. Have you tried reading the Polish translation of Jeff VanderMeer's City of Saints and Madmen? I bought a copy of that from him, in part because of the beautiful cover. Well that and I like collecting foreign editions of books I enjoyed :P

Anonymous said...

Narrenturm is an alternate history - Hussite Wars with some supernatural stuff. It was too much history for me sometimes but as usual Sapkowski's strength lies in showing randomness and unpredictability of history. Nothing goes as planned.

I've been avoiding new authors for the past six months - had my PhD thesis to write so I mostly read science papers. Felt guilty for even buying Toll the Hounds. I've only read Lukanienko's Czystopis (Final Version) because I've read Brudnopis (Draft) before and wanted to know how the story ends.
So I know it's out, have seen it in bookstores, been avoiding :P.

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