Episode 157: Marie Brennan – The Market of 100 Fortunes (Legend of the Five Rings Book 3)

A chat with Hugo-nominated author Marie Brennan about her Legend of the Five Rings trilogy, which just wrapped up with The Market of 100 Fortunes.

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Amazon Links for The Market of 100 Fortunes
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About the Book

Enthralling fantasy mystery from the world of Legend of the Five Rings as two samurai risk everything to rescue an old friend from the clutches of a shadowy trickster

Having vanquished demons and halted invasions of devious creatures from the Spirit Realms, Asako Sekken and Agasha no Isao Ryotora are finally going to be married. But when a note from their old ally Sayashi arrives unexpectedly, the samurai find themselves dragged into another supernatural mystery.

Their investigation leads them to Crane lands and an ancient market ruled by a mysterious being. Now Sekken and Ryotora must use all their wit and charm to save Sayashi from a hundred year bargain before they find themselves embroiled in a conflict with a forgotten deity of unimaginable power.

Indiana Jones meets Teen Titans in The Dream Rider Saga, a fast-paced urban fantasy trilogy from “one of Canada’s most original writers of speculative fiction” (Library Journal).

Praise for Marie Brennan’s Legend of the Five Rings trilogy

“Both protagonists are pining idiots, though for fascinatingly different reasons. Five out of Five.” — Lauren’s Bookshelf, on The Night Parade of 100 Demons

“It transcends its tie-in roots to deliver a powerful, emotional tale of loyalty, honour, duty and love.” — Track of Words, on The Night Parade of 100 Demons

“An absolute ‘must read’ choice for fans of Samurai novels and Heroic Fantasy Fiction” — Midwest Book Review, on The Game of 100 Candles

About Marie Brennan

Marie Brennan is a former anthropologist and folklorist who shamelessly leans on her academic fields for inspiration. She recently misapplied her professors’ hard work to The Market of 100 Fortunes and the short novel Driftwood.

She is the author of the Hugo Award-nominated Victorian adventure series The Memoirs of Lady Trent along with several other series, over eighty short stories, several poems, and the New Worlds series of worldbuilding guides; as half of M.A. Carrick, she has written the epic Rook and Rose trilogy, beginning with The Mask of Mirrors.

Episode 156: Douglas Smith – The Lost Expedition (The Dream Rider Saga, Book 3)

A chat with Canadian author Douglas Smith about his young adult fantasy trilogy The Dream Rider Saga, which has just culminated in Book 3, The Lost Expedition.

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smithwriter.com

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@WritingtheFantastic

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@smithwritr

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@douglassmithwriter

Amazon Links for The Lost Expedition
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Douglas Smith’s Amazon Page

About the Book

The Thrilling Conclusion to the Multi-Award-Winning Trilogy

Will is the Dream Rider, the superhero who walks in our dreams but never in the streets of his own city. Case is his girlfriend, a survivor of those streets who hears voices warning her of danger. Fader, her brother, is very good at disappearing.

In The Hollow Boys, they defeated a body swapper and a witch to save the world. In The Crystal Key, they battled warring cults to protect an ancient artifact tied to Will’s affliction.

The Chakana. The Crystal Key. But the key to what? To finding answers, they hope, to the questions that rule their lives.
What caused their strange powers? And Will’s crippling agoraphobia? Can he be cured? Why did their parents travel to the jungles of Peru eight years ago? Are they still alive?

Behind every question is the Chakana. What is the mysterious relic? Why will people kill to possess it? What hold does it have on Will?

As creatures from Inca myths haunt the three friends, another attack on the Chakana threatens Will’s life. To save him and solve the mystery of the lost expedition, only one choice remains. Return to Peru. With the Chakana.

There, they find friends and foes, both old and new. And behind it all, an unseen enemy moving them like pieces on a chessboard. To win this deadly game, Will, Case, and Fader must master new powers to defeat the most dangerous adversary they’ve ever faced—a god.

At stake this time? Every life, every world, every universe. Everything.

Indiana Jones meets Teen Titans in The Dream Rider Saga, a fast-paced urban fantasy trilogy from “one of Canada’s most original writers of speculative fiction” (Library Journal).

Praise for The Dream Rider Saga

The Lost Expedition (Book 3)

“Smith powers to an explosive conclusion in the finale of his Dream Rider series, a lavishly concocted ride brimming with magic, mystery, and mayhem… [and] bursting with dark magic, beastly protectors, and a slew of extraordinary fantasy characters … Smith skillfully probes deeper messages behind all the fun, as the main players face the consequences of humankind’s disregard for the Earth—and each other. … Takeaway: Explosive conclusion to this spectacular fantasy joyride.” — BookLife (Editor’s Pick)

The Hollow Boys (Book 1)
Winner of the Aurora Award for Best Young Adult Novel
Winner of the juried IAP Award for Best Young Adult Novel

This arresting series kickoff grips from the start as it introduces its inventive milieu, its flawed but fantastically powered hero, its playful worldbuilding, and a host of tantalizing mysteries. … Takeaway: Thrilling YA fantasy”—BookLife (Editor’s Pick)

“An assured, confident novel… A must-read story for YA fantasy fans.”—Blueink Review (Starred review)

“Inventive, engaging, and boundless fun.”—The Ottawa Review of Books

“A fun supernatural tale with well-developed characters and a touch of romance.”—Kirkus Reviews

The Crystal Key (Book 2)

“This thrilling superpowered urban fantasy series continues to grip.”—BookLife (Editor’s Pick)

“This fast-paced story delivers in a big way—and Smith has all his ducks lined up for an explosive conclusion that readers won’t want to miss.”—Blueink Review (Starred review)

The Crystal Key has everything that made The Hollow Boys work and turns it up a few notches. I can’t wait for the conclusion in The Lost Expedition.”—Ottawa Review of Books

About Douglas Smith

Douglas Smith is a multi-award-winning author described by Library Journal as “one of Canada’s most original writers of speculative fiction.”

His latest work is the multi-award-winning YA urban fantasy trilogy, The Dream Rider Saga (The Hollow BoysThe Crystal Key, and The Lost Expedition). Other books include the urban fantasy novel, The Wolf at the End of the World; the collections, ChimerascopeImpossibilia, and La Danse des Esprits (translated); and the writer’s guide Playing the Short Game: How to Market & Sell Short Fiction.

His short fiction has appeared in the top markets in the field, including The Magazine of Fantasy & Science FictionAmazing StoriesInterZoneWeird TalesBaen’s UniverseEscape PodOn Spec, and Cicada.

Published in twenty-seven languages, Doug is a four-time winner of Canada’s Aurora Award, most recently in 2023 for The Hollow Boys, as well as the juried IAP Award for the same book. He’s been a finalist for the Astounding Award, CBC’s Bookies Award, Canada’s juried Sunburst Award, the juried Alberta Magazine Award for Fiction, and France’s juried Prix Masterton and Prix Bob Morane

Episode 152: Nir Yaniv – The Good Soldier

A long chat with author Nir Yaniv about his new humorous, satirical military science fiction novel, The Good Soldier: “M*A*S*H meets Starship Troopers in outer space,” published by Shadowpaw Press.

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niryaniv.com

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@TheNirYaniv

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@nyfiction

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Publisher’s Book Page

Nir Yaniv’s Amazon Page

About the Book

The Imperial Navy has long been at war. It is a well-oiled machine, a mighty galactic power in which nothing can go wrong.

Enter Pre-Private Joseph Fux, self-proclaimed Idiot, Second Class.

When Fux arrives on board the light frigate UPS Spitz, things immediately begin to go wrong. It’s not Fux’s fault. It never is. Accidents just happen when he’s around, despite the best intentions.

And as the always-cheerful Fux bungles his way through one job after another, he throws the whole ship and its orderly crew into chaos. No one is left unscathed: not the responsible and lonely Lt. Lipton, grieving for his lost love; not the mercilessly logical Doctor Nightingale, who may or may not be Lipton’s current romantic interest; not the overzealous Ensign Berseker, or the pompous political officer, Commander Kapust. Not even the hidden, monstrous Captain.

Knowingly or not, Fux is an agent of resistance, his blind stupidity the only sane response to the insanity of war. Something’s gotta give, and the tiny spanner-in-the-works that is Fux threatens at last to destroy the entire machinery of the Galactic Empire . . .

“In this amiable satire of the gung-ho heroics of military sci-fi, Yaniv (coauthor of The Tel Aviv Dossier) sets a seeming simpleton against an immense empire, and the contest is hardly fair . . . (A)n amusing alternative to the usual run of martial marvels and battle-tested warriors. Military SF fans will enjoy this gentle roasting.” – Publishers Weekly

“Drawing on a tradition of anti-war fiction and his own military experience, Nir Yaniv meshes together classical American gung-ho SF with the delightful absurdism of European literature to create an unforgettable far-future fable for our times. Think M.A.S.H. in space, and you’ll come closest to capturing the spirit of The Good Soldier, but you’ll have to enmesh yourself in the (mis)adventures of Idiot-First-Class Fux and company of the good ship Spitz to find out for yourself. This is one explosive novel you do not want to miss!” – Lavie Tidhar, award-winning author of Central Station and Neom

“A madcap dystopian satire that shoulders its way into the ranks of Bill the Galactic Hero and Catch-22, then stands sloppily at attention as it smirks in the face of an apoplectic political officer.” – Alex Shvartsman, Award-Winning Author of The Middling Affliction and Eridani’s Crown

“I really enjoyed this: a rattling, SFnal updating of The Good Soldier Švejk via Starship Troopers (as it might be: Švejkship Troopers): funny, pointed, readable, a subversive depiction of the futility of war and a satire on the perennial logic of the military mind and the structures of the army. Fux is a wonderful anti-hero: a buffoon and an idiot (‘second class’) but also an everyman. Highly recommended.” – Adam Roberts, award-winning author of Jack Glass

About Nir Yaniv

Nir Yaniv, author of The Good Soldier, is an Israeli-born multidisciplinary artist living in Los Angeles. He’s an author, a musician, an illustrator, and a filmmaker. He founded Israel’s first online science fiction magazine and served as its chief editor for ten years, after which he moved on to editing a printed genre magazine. He collaborated with World Fantasy Award-winning author Lavie Tidhar on two novels, including the “deranged sci-fi extravaganza” (per The Jewish QuarterlyThe Tel Aviv Dossier, and his English- language collection The Love Machine & Other Contraptions was published by Infinity Plus in 2012. His most recent Hebrew novel, King of Jerusalem, was published in Israel in 2019. His short stories have appeared in Weird TalesApex, and ChiZine, among others.

Nir’s musical career includes soundtracks for film, dance shows, and theater. His most recent work is the voice-and-drums animated album The Voice Remains (LifeArt Music, 2021). Nir has also directed several short films and music videos, both live-action and animated.

Episode 151: Robert J. Sawyer – The Downloaded

A chat with Hugo and Nebula Award-winning author Robert J. Sawyer about his latest novel, The Downloaded, now available as an Audible original audiobook and coming in print from Shadowpaw Press on May 7, 2024.

Website
sfwriter.com

Amazon links
Amazon.com
Amazon.cahttps://youtu.be/H5pURHwuGg0

Publisher’s book page

Robert J. Sawyer’s Amazon Page

About the Book

The new novel by Canada’s top Science Fiction writer

In 2059 two very different groups have their minds uploaded into a quantum computer in Waterloo, Ontario.

One group consists of astronauts preparing for Earth’s first interstellar voyage. The other? Convicted murderers, serving their sentences in a virtual-reality prison.

But when disaster strikes, the astronauts and the prisoners must download back into physical reality and find a way to work together to save Earth from destruction.

The Downloaded debuted in a six-month exclusive window as an Audible Original narrated by Academy Award-winner Brendan Fraser promoted by national TV and radio ad campaigns. This print edition is coming out immediately after Audible’s exclusivity ends and is being supported by a six-city cross-Canada author book tour.

“The Downloaded absolutely sizzles with fascinating ideas. You want space travel, a ruined Earth, virtual worlds, a cast of relatable characters, and a glimpse into the labyrinth of human destiny? Look no further: this book has all that and more.” —Robert Charles Wilson, Hugo Award-winning author of Spin

“The Downloaded is a wonderful demonstration of Sawyer’s deep understanding of — and compassion for — people, regardless who or what they are, or even what they have done. It’s a rare and potent humanity that elevates his work high above the rest.” —Julie E. Czerneda, Aurora Award-winning author of To Each This World

“In The Downloaded, Sawyer proves he’s not just a master at using science fiction to address social issues but also a master at portraying diverse characters.” —James Alan Gardner, Theodore Sturgeon Award-winning author of Commitment Hour

“The Downloaded is a wicked-smart thrill ride from start to finish. I loved it.” —Sylvain Neuvel, bestselling author of A History of What Comes Next

“One of the best SF novels I’ve read in years.” —Allen Steele, Hugo Award-winning author of Coyote

About Robert J. Sawyer

Photo by Carolyn Clink

Robert J. Sawyer–“the dean of Canadian science fiction,” according to the CBC, and a Globe and Mail and Maclean’sbestseller–is the only Canadian to have won all three of the world’s top awards for best science-fiction novel of the year: the Hugo, the Nebula, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. A member of both The Order of Canada and The Order of Ontario, Rob has won more Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy Awards (“Auroras”) than anyone else in history. The ABC TV series FlashForward was based on his novel of the same name; The Downloaded is his twenty-fifth novel.

A popular TEDx and keynote speaker with over 700 radio and TV interviews under his belt, Rob physically lives in Mississauga, and in cyberspace, he’s at sfwriter.com.

Episode 150: Richard Sparks

An hour-long chat with Richard Sparks, English-born comedy writer, lyricist, librettist, author and director, author of the new gaming-meets-epic fantasy novel New Rock, New Role.

Website
richardsparks.com

Richard Sparks’s Amazon Page

The Introduction

Richard Sparks is an English-born comedy writer, lyricist, librettist, author and director now living in Los Angeles. His writing credentials span the gamut of the entertainment world, from film and TV and books through lyrics for operas.

His TV writing includes iconic shows like Not the Nine O’clock News (BBC TV) and The Secret Policeman’s Ball (BBC TV, performed by Rowen Atkinson and directed by John Cleese).

He has written several books, including the biography of the music producer Milt Okun, Along the Cherry Lane. (Oku discovered and launched John Denver and mentored him throughout his career. He created arrangements for Peter, Paul and Mary that the trio performed for half a century. He brought Placido Domingo a crossover career that made him an international star beyond the world of opera.)

Richard’s latest book, New Rock, New Role blends the gaming world and epic fantasy.

Episode 149: Aurora Ascher

An hour-long chat with paranormal and fantasy romance writer Aurora Ascher, author of the new novel Sanctuary of the Shadow, Book 1 of the Elemental Races series.

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auroraascher.com

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@aurora.ascher.author

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Aurora Ascher’s Amazon Page

The Introduction

Photo by Sergio Veranes

Paranormal and fantasy romance author Aurora Ascher loves misunderstood mythical monsters, redeemable anti-heroes, and epic happily-ever-afters.

A woman of many creative pursuits, Aurora is also a professional musician and visual artist. She currently resides in Montreal with her trusty espresso machine and her endlessly patient husband, whom she sometimes doesn’t see for hours until she emerges from her writing cave like a bear in springtime.

Episode 147: Kerstin Stanford

An hour-long chat with Kerstin Stanford, author of the middle-grade fantasy novel Escape from Portaliege: A Sam Harte Adventure.

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kerstinstanford.com

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@kerstin.stanforddorren

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@StanfordDorren

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@stanforddorren

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@kerstinstanford

Kerstin Stanford’s Amazon page

The Introduction

Kerstin Stanford is a California-based author, marketing professional, and event construction enthusiast. Her debut novel, Escape From Portaliege: A Sam Harte Adventure, follows 12-year-old Sam Harte as she navigates a summer camp filled with strange creatures and peculiar counsellors.

Before Kerstin became an author, she worked in promotions and marketing for twenty years, with experience in writing blogs, newsletters, brochures, website, social media content, and more.

Kerstin currently lives with her family in Huntington Beach, where she is working on the second book in the Sam Harte Adventure series.

Episode 146: L. Jagi Lamplighter

An hour-long chat with L. Jagi Lamplighter, author of the YA fantasy series The Books of Unexpected Enlightenment and the Prospero’s Children series.

Website
ljagilamplighter.com

SuperversiveSF Blog

Fantastic Schools and Where to Find Them

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@lampwright4

L. Jagi Lamplighter’s Amazon Page

The Introduction

L. Jagi Lamplighter is the author of the young-adult fantasy series The Books of Unexpected Enlightenment, the third book of which was nominated for the YA Dragon Award in 2017, the fourth book of which won the first YA Ribbit Award, and the fifth book of which also won two small literary awards. She is also the author of the Prospero’s Children series: Prospero LostProspero In Hell, and Prospero Regained, and has published numerous articles and short stories as well as an anthology of her own works, In the Lamplight. She also edits for Superversive Press and teaches The Art and Craft of Writing.

When not writing, she switches to her secret identity as wife and stay-home mom in Centreville, VA, where she lives with her dashing husband, author John C. Wright, and their four children, Orville, Ping-Ping Eve, Roland Wilbur, and Justinian Oberon.

Episode 145: Omari Richards

An hour-long chat with Omari Richards, “lifetime blerd” and author of the new The Kimoni Legacy fantasy series, as well as the Tales of Nahawalla short stories.

Website
omari-richards.com

Facebook

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@omari_a_richards

Omari Richards’s Amazon Page

Omari Richards was born to Dominican immigrants in America and grew up in a household filled with laughter, music, fellowship, and tales of the homeland. From shape-shifting witches to monsters hatched from chicken eggs, these stories enriched and invigorated his imagination. This was strengthened once he found the written word in the adventures of Jim Hawkins, King Arthur, Ivanhoe, and Robin Hood, to name a few.

Omari hopes to capture and enrich the imagination of his readers in a similar way with his new series, The Kimoni Legacy and Tales of Nahwalla short stories.

You can find Omari, a lifetime “blerd” and West African history/ folklore buff, lost in a book, immersed in the nearest bookstore, or catching up on One Piece and My Hero Academia in his Northern Virginia home.

Episode 144: Nick Stitle

A 45-minute chat with Nick Stitle, the 17-year-old author of the epic fantasy Stormless.

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nickstitle.com

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@nickstitleauthor

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@nickstitle_author

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@nickstitle

Nick Stitle’s Amazon Page

The Introduction

Injuries forced Nicklas Stitle to stop playing tennis after his freshman year of high school, and he realized that was an opportunity to begin working on the story he had been carefully putting together in his head. Stitle began writing Stormless at the age of fifteen and woke up early every day to work on the story before school, creating a new fantasy world and crafting characters he could relate to. Incorporating valuable advice from industry experts wanting to help a young author, Stitle completed Stormless at the age of seventeen. 

Stitle has nearly finished The Fire King, book two in what he intends to be a four-book series, and is currently planning books three and four. He hopes to inspire other young writers to chase after their dreams.

Stitle lives in Indiana with his mom, dad, older brother, and two dogs.