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First reviews of The House of Binding Thorns

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Just thought I’d share a handful of reviews of The House of Binding Thorns–one week to go…

Liz Bourke:

The House of Binding Thorns takes the gothic atmospheric politics of The House of Shattered Wings and ramps them up to a pitch of intensity that I really wasn’t expecting.

(…) It does so much so right, and so well, that I cannot help but love it wholly and entirely.

It really is an utterly magnificent achievement.

Chris Meadows at Sci-Fi and Fantasy Reviews:

This is humanity at its worst and best, and it’s mirrored back to the reader in the faces of the supernatural creatures striding the broken streets of Paris. These aren’t saints or monsters, but complicated people, making decisions for their own reasons, worming their terrible way off the page and into your heart.

… a story which rewards close reading, and one which compelled me to keep turning pages; the climax was rewarding and impressive – and left me breathlessly hoping for more.

Stitch’s Media Fix:

…such an experience for me.

(…) I almost felt like I was in the middle of a hurricane being smacked around by all of the feelings and the incredible worldbuilding. It’s a brilliant, beautiful work of fiction and while it can hurt to read it and worry about the characters you’ve come to love over several hundred pages, there’s also hope to be had.

The House of Binding Thorns is an incredible book in a series that I can’t get enough of. If you enjoyed works like Susan Ee’s Penryn and the End of Days series or Kaori Yuki’s Angel Sanctuary, this book will be right up your alley. Trust me.

K Hart at longandfullemptywithwords:

The relationships between characters were incredible. (…) I could talk for hours, but this is supposed to be a short review. (…)

Do read.(…) absolutely this book did not disappoint!

The book is also featured on Kirkus’s “list of Science Fiction and Fantasy Everyone will be Talking about in April”

Buy now
Read Chapter One Online!

Women in Fantasy: Zen Cho, Vic James and Aliette de Bodard in conversation

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Come hang out with Zen Cho (author of Sorcerer to the Crown), Vic James (author of Gilded Cage)  in Waterstone’s Picadilly! We’ll talk women in fantasy, Regency & 19th Century, and quite possibly food!

You can get tickets here, or on the day: they’re £8 but redeemable against the purchase of one of our books–and The House of Binding Thorns will just have come out (just saying *grin*)

Last day to nominate for the Hugos!

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If you still need ideas/stuff to read at the last minute I’ve collected my recommendations here.

The short version: please consider Likhain (sample above) for your Best Fan Artist ballot, and Tade Thompson for the Campbell. And because I’ve repeatedly had the question: insofar as I can tell, the Xuya universe series is eligible in the Best Series category (meets the total wordcount and had 3 new volumes released in 2016: take your pick between “A Salvaging of Ghosts” , “A Hundred and Seventy Storms”, and “Pearl” in the excellent anthology The Starlit Wood–you can read the first two free online, or you can check out the Cheat Starter Guide to Xuya)

Dominion of the Fallen word search

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Want to play a fun game?
Leticia Lara has kindly made a Dominion of the Fallen word search puzzle–you can go look for the heads of the major Houses in the books, here. I’m offering three UK mass market paperback edition of The House of Shattered Wings if you can find them all!

(if you want to actually solve the puzzle, the one at Leticia’s blog is a widget where you can highlight text)

Read for Pixels fundraiser and Google Hangout

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I’m delighted to be taking part in this year’s Read for Pixels’ fundraiser, which aims to fight violence against women. The fundraiser just went up, and I’m offering a Parisian Bundle, which will let you curl up with The House of Shattered Wings, good food, and a print of gorgeous artwork by Likhain, featuring Françoise and Berith, two characters from The House of Binding Thorns (a Fallen and her mortal lover). You can also get a Skype call with me if you’re so inclined. And there are plenty of goodies from the likes of Laini Taylor, Mary Robinette Kowal, Michelle Sagara…

This weekend only, author Karen Rose is matching all donations up to $4000, so now’s the time for donating if you want to!

To support the fundraiser, I’ll be taking part in Read for Pixels’ Google Hangout on Sunday March 19th, 4pm Paris Time. I’ll be reading from my forthcoming The House of Binding Thorns: ruined and decadent Paris, magical intrigues, dragons in human shape, and kissing and stabbing (not necessarily in that order :p), and taking questions about my writing.

More info here, and access details to the livestream channel here.

Read for Pixels Google Hangouts

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I’ll be taking part in Read for Pixels’ Google Hangout on Sunday March 19th, 4pm Paris Time, to raise money for The Pixel Project’s fundraising campaign to fight violence against women. I’ll be reading from my forthcoming The House of Binding Thorns: ruined and decadent Paris, magical intrigues, dragons in human shape, and kissing and stabbing (not necessarily in that order :p), and taking questions about my writing.

More info here, and access details to the livestream channel here.

I’m also offering a Parisian Bundle for the fundraiser, which will let you curl up with The House of Shattered Wings, good food, and a print of gorgeous artwork by Likhain, featuring Françoise and Berith, two characters from The House of Binding Thorns (a Fallen and her mortal lover).

House of Binding Thorns excerpt!

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Tor.com has published an excerpt of The House of Binding Thorns (chapter one, to be more specific). In which we return to the House of Hawthorn, its Fallen head Asmodeus, and to alchemist and angel essence addict Madeleine–aka “character in deep trouble” ^-^

Read Chapter One Online!

More book info here (coming your way April 2017 from Roc in the US and Gollancz in the UK/RoW!)

Citadel of Weeping Pearls cover and release details

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Hadn’t gotten around to this yet, but here’s the cover for The Citadel of Weeping Pearls, my Xuya novella that was a finalist for the Locus Awards in 2015.

It will be available March 28th 2017 from all major retailers (and in print through Createspace) thanks to the JABberwocky Books Programme.

Art and cover design by Maurizio Manzieri.

The Citadel of Weeping Pearls was a great wonder; a perfect meld between cutting edge technology and esoteric sciences—its inhabitants capable of teleporting themselves anywhere, its weapons small and undetectable and deadly.

Thirty years ago, threatened by an invading fleet from the Dai Viet Empire, the Citadel disappeared and was never seen again.

But now the Dai Viet Empire itself is under siege, on the verge of a war against an enemy that turns their own mindships against them; and the Empress, who once gave the order to raze the Citadel, is in desperate needs of its weapons. Meanwhile, on a small isolated space station, an engineer obsessed with the past works on a machine that will send her thirty years back, to the height of the Citadel’s power.

But the Citadel’s disappearance still extends chains of grief and regrets all the way into the fraught atmosphere of the Imperial Court; and this casual summoning of the past might have world-shattering consequences…

A new book set in the award-winning, critically acclaimed Xuya universe.

More info about the book, including excerpt!

Revealing: Children of Thorns, Children of Water, an exclusive preorder reward for House of Binding Thorns

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I’ve spoken of it before, but preorders are super important–they help establish enthusiasm for the book, and also boost sales in that all-important first week. As an author they also feel special to me, because readers are making a great gesture of faith on a book that hasn’t been delivered yet. Last time, for The House of Shattered Wings, I offered an exclusive small ebook of short stories (which you can now read for free here). This time around, I considered several options, but in the end the exclusive short story was, once again, the one that polled best. So I set out to writing a really short prequel story set just before the beginning of The House of Binding Thorns, which would introduce some of the new characters, showcase some old favourites, and get readers ready for enjoying the book.

Except, erm.

I ended up writing a novelette. All 12,000 words of it. So much for short, but on the plus side you should get an immersive, detailed read :p

So… preorder The House of Binding Thorns, and you get access to “Children of Thorns, Children of Water”, an exclusive prequel short long story set just before the events of the book. Here’s the cover:

I’m over at the Gollancz blog explaining a bit about how Megan Crewe designed it.

If you don’t feel like hopping there, here’s more info about the story:

In a Paris that never was, a city of magicians, alchemists and Fallen angels struggling to recover from a devastating magical war…

Once each year, the House of Hawthorn tests the Houseless: for those chosen, success means the difference between a safe life and the devastation of the streets. However, for Thuan and his friend Kim Cuc, — dragons in human shapes and envoys from the dying underwater kingdom of the Seine — the stakes are entirely different. Charged with infiltrating a House that keeps encroaching on the Seine, if they are caught, they face a painful death.

Worse, mysterious children of thorns stalk the candidates through Hawthorn’s corridors. Will Thuan and Kim Cuc survive and succeed?

You can get the ebook of Children of Thorns, Children of Water if you preorder The House of Binding Thorns (ebook, audiobook or physical book): Gollancz has kindly agreed to fulfilling the US preorders in addition to the UK ones, so whichever edition you preordered (aka “the one with the sword” or “the blue one with the thorns”), just go here and fill in the form to get access.

And here’s where to preorder!

Buy now

If you’re a newsletter subscriber, my next newsletter is going out tonight, and will feature an excerpt from Children of Thorns, Children of Water. If you’re not a subscriber, there’s still time!

And here’s some review quotes, just in case you’re not convinced:

Starred Publishers Weekly Review for HOUSE OF BINDING THORNS

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First reviews of The House of Binding Thorns are coming in… And Publishers’ Weekly gave it a starred review!

“Meddling gleefully in the affairs of devils and dragons, this affective sequel to 2015’s The House of Shattered Wings touches the heart as often as it cuts throats (…) Having fully crafted her world, de Bodard is now completely in control: she can move swiftly from gentle poetic touches to bloody Grand Guignol gestures, and she sure-handedly holds the reader by exposing the vulnerabilities and needs that drive even the seemingly all-powerful figures of rebel angels and ancient serpents to surrender to a higher collective power.”

Full review here.

More book info here! Coming quite soon now (sayth the author, hiding under the bed).