Tag Archives: Tobias S. Buckell

Final Donations, Final Days

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

This is it, folks. The last blog of author-donated books for this year’s fundraiser.

We’ve got some really good stuff in here, enough books for two blogs, really. But these are the final days of the fundraiser, so we’re going for one big, action-packed blog instead.

As I write this, we’re less than 500 dollars away from breaking $250,000. I honestly didn’t think we were going to make it. Now I’m curious to see how high things will manage to go before the fundraiser is over at midnight on Feb 7th.

And just to be clear that includes all of Feb 7th. And yes, I know I should technically say the fundraiser ends at 11:59 PM CST on February 7th, but that’s cumbersome. We all know what midnight on the 7th really means…

Will I still count your donation if it’s a little late? Yeah, we’ll probably still include you in the prize drawing and match your donation 50%. But why wait when you can just head over to the Worldbuilders Team Page and donate right now?

And remember, for every 10 bucks you kick in, you have the chance of winning some something from among the thousands of books folks have already donated.

Plus the books we’re adding today, of course….

  • An Advance Reader Copy of Redshirts by John Scalzi. Signed by the man himself.

(Book modeled by the Amazing Athena)

Though I’d never say it to his face, John Scalzi is a hell of a nice guy.

I’m not just saying that because he’s always been kind to me and given me good advice. I’m not saying it because invited me to be part his Clash of the Geeks anthology a while back.

It’s not even because he recently teamed up with Bill Schafer of Subterranean press to donate a week’s worth of profit from his most recent e-book to Planned Parenthood after Komen pulled their support. (If you head over there and buy a copy before the 8th, you can support the cause, too.)

No. The real reason I’m fond of John Scalzi is because he sent me an early look at his upcoming novel Redshirts.

At 20 pages in, I was really enjoying it. At 30 pages in, I was laughing out loud in the restaurant where I was sitting, reading it. Around page 43, I got out my phone and called him just to gush about how much I was enjoying it.

I finished the book later that day, thought I should have been doing other things, and was delighted to discover that it was brilliant to the very end. (Which isn’t always the case.) When I e-mailed John to tell him that I’d love to blurb it, he offered to donate an Advance Reading Copy to Worldbuilders.

That means if you win it in the auction, the lottery you can read it long before it comes out in June. This will improve your herd rank among other geeks and give you a great opportunity to be smug.

I won’t go on about how much I loved the book. But if you’re really curious, you can read the review I wrote on Goodreads.

  • Six copies of Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. Signed by the author.

This is one of the handful of books that I liked well enough to blurb last year. The publishers liked the quote well enough that they put it on the back cover of the UK edition:

Laini was also cool enough to send along four copies of the audiobook of Daughter of Smoke and Bone, too. So we’ll add those to the fundraiser as well.

  • Four audio book copies of Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor.

  • One hardcover set of The Mortal Instruments Books One through Three: City of Bones, City of Ashes, and City of Glass by Cassandra Clare.  Signed by the author.

“Clare’s atmospheric setting is spot-on, informed equally by neo-gothic horror films and the modern fantasy leanings of Neil Gaiman. Fans of the smart/chic horror typified by Buffy the Vampire Slayer will instantly fall for this new series.” – Publishers Weekly

  • One hardcover set of The Infernal Devices Books One and Two: Clockwork Angel and Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare.  Signed by the author.

“Mysteries, misdirection, and riddles abound. . . . Fans of the Mortal Instruments series and newcomers alike won’t be disappointed.” – Publishers Weekly

  • One paperback set of Goblin Hero and Goblin Quest by Jim C. Hines.  Signed by the author.

“Hines recognizes that wisdom is most often common sense, and that mouthing off to the big guy with the sword is a very bad idea.” – Tanya Huff, author of Smoke and Ashes.

  • One hardcover set of Crystal Rain and Ragamuffin by Tobias S. Buckell.  Signed by the author.

“Tobias S. Buckell is a dazzling new voice.” – Robert J. Sawyer, Hugo Award-winning author of Hominids

“Tobias Buckell is stretching the horizons of science fiction and giving readers a hell of a lot of swashbuckling fun in the bargain.” — John Scalzi, bestselling author of Old Man’s War

  • One first edition hardcover set of The Edge of Reason and The Edge of Ruin by Melinda Snodgrass. Signed by the author.

“If H. P. Lovecraft and H. L. Mencken had ever collaborated, they might have come up with something like The Edge of Reason. This one will delight thinkers-and outrage true believers-of all stripes.” – George R. R. Martin

  • One set of Wild Cards novels: Wild Cards I, Inside Straight, Suicide Kings, and Busted Flush, edited by George R. R. Martin. Signed by many of the authors.

“Delicious… Everything I’d hoped for in a new Wild Cards book. The character interactions and plot twists have exactly the complexity, surprise, and unsentimental realism I’d expect out of a George R. R. Martin project.” – Austin Grossman

  • One set of Jennifer Brozek-edited anthologies and an audiobook of The Tasty Collection, read by Andrew Mayor.  All signed by Jennifer Brozek.

“You’ll hear echoes of Stephen King’s The Stand, David Brin’s The Postman and even Cormac McCarthy’s The Road as you read this series of stories about the survivors of a great plague. The stories are varied and lively, and their talented authors lead you (sometimes kicking and screaming) toward sanctuary.” – Patrick Swenson

  • Two sets of the complete Rai-Kirah series: Transformation, Revelation, and Restoration by Carol Berg.  Signed by the author.

“Superbly textured, splendidly characterized, this spellbinding tale provides myriad delights for the fantasy connoisseur.”  – RT Book Reviews

  • One complete series of The Novels of the Collegia Magica: The Spirit Lens, The Soul Mirror, and The Daemon Prism by Carol Berg.  Signed by the author.

“Set in a world in which the implacable laws of science war with the resonances of magical power for supremacy, Berg’s novel is rich with vivid characters and unforgettable places…an infectiously enjoyable series opener that fans of thought-provoking fantasy and intriguing mystery should appreciate.”  – Library Journal

  • One bound galley of Flesh and Spirit by Carol Berg.  Signed by the author.

“Berg brings to life every stone in a peaceful monastery and every nuance in a stratified society, describing the difficult dirty work of ordinary life as beautifully as she conveys the heart-stopping mysticism of holiness just beyond human perception.”  – Sharon Shinn, author of Troubled Waters

  • One US trade paperback re-release of The Song of the Beast by Carol Berg. Signed by the author.

“Berg’s fascinating fantasy is a puzzle story, with a Celtic-flavored setting and a plot as intricate and absorbing as fine Celtic lacework…. the characters are memorable, and Berg’s intelligence and narrative skill make this stand-alone fantasy most commendable.” – Booklist

  • Two first edition hardcover copies of Inheritance by Christopher Paolini. Signed by the author.

“This book is an achievement. Readers… will be transported.” – Sunday Times

  • One hardcover copy of Throne of the Crescent Moon by Saladin Ahmed.  Signed by the author.

“Ahmed is a master storyteller in the grand epic tradition.  Swashbuckling adventure, awesome mystery, a bit of horror, and all of it written beautifully.  A real treat!” – N. K. Jemisin, Locus award-wining author of The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms

Pat’s Note: This book is also an ARC. The final version of the book won’t be hitting the shelves until June. So if you win it, you get to be reading way ahead of the curve…

“The best debut I’ve read all year! Nightshifted is simply amazing!” – Kat Richardson

  • One set of Jabberwocky and Hatter by Daniel Coleman. Signed by the author.

“The surprising story inspired by Lewis Carroll’s epic poem. You might know how it ends, but you won’t believe how it happens.”

  • Seven Hardcover copies of The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi. Signed by the author.

  • Four sets of The Magicians, The Magician King (audio book) and a Brakebills University t-shirt from Lev Grossman. Book and audio book are signed by the author.
Pat’s Note: I did a gushy write-up about The Magicians back when I first read it. I liked it enough to write a blog about it over here.

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Take George Martin’s instead: “The Magicians is to Harry Potter as a shot of Irish whiskey is to a glass of weak tea.”

*     *     *

Well folks, that’s the last of the books for this year.

Remember that for every 10 dollars you donate on the Worldbuilders team page, you get a chance to win these books and many, many more. What’s more, worldbuilders will match your donation by 50%.

We also have a few auctions still running, you can find them over here.

If you want to see the other items that have been donated to Worldbuilders, or learn more about the fundraiser itself, you can head over to the main page here.

Posted in Worldbuilders 2011 | By Pat43 Responses

Hundreds of Books From Subterranean Press

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

Once again the lovely folks at Subterranean Press have sent us hundreds of books. Many of them rare or out of print, and all of them are gorgeous and lovingly crafted.

Let’s take a look….

You all know who Ray Bradbury is, right? We don’t need to talk about that.

And if you’re reading this blog, you have to already understand how big a deal Fahrenheit 451 is. I’m sure of that, too.

This book brings together 16 vintage Bradbury stories and novellas that chart the evolution of the images, ideas, and social concerns that found their purest, most potent expression in Fahrenheit 451. […]  it is both an invaluable Bradbury sourcebook and a unique, intimate glimpse into the mysteries of the creative process.”

From Publishers Weekly (Pick of the Week, Starred Review): “An essential addition to the bookshelf of every Bradbury fan, the collection is also accessible to curious readers with a taste for the dark, the strange, and the macabre.”

I’ll admit that I didn’t know about this book (and the one directly below) before they were donated, but now I’m going to have to have to read them as soon as I have time. Sooner maybe.

These books are *very* new, so there aren’t many reviews yet. Instead, here’s a brief description from Sub Press:

“In paired novellas, award-winning authors Tobias Buckell and Paolo Bacigalupi explore a shared world where magic is forbidden and its use is rewarded with the axe. A world of glittering memories and a desperate present, where everyone uses a little magic, and someone else always pays the price.”

Bacigalupi is already well-known for his award winning novel The Windup Girl which was named by TIME Magazine as one of the ten best novels of 2009, and also won the Hugo, Nebula, Locus, Compton Crook, and John W. Campbell Memorial Awards.

In short, he pretty much won everything with that book. Personally, I think he’s probably a witch.


While he might not be a witch, Buckell has his share of accolades as well. He’s a Writers of The Future winner and a Campbell Award finalist. Reviewers have called Buckell “a dazzling new voice” (Robert J. Sawyer) and “an exciting new writer” (Cory Doctorow.)

From the description of The Executioness by Sub Press:

“Magic has a price.

In Khaim, that price is your head if you’re found using it. For the use of magic comes with a side effect: it creates bramble. The bramble is a creeping, choking menace that has covered majestic ancient cities, and felled civilizations. In order to prevent the spread of the bramble, many lose their heads to the cloaked executioners of Khaim.”

It’s been forever since I’ve seen two authors writing in a shared world. This is cool stuff, and I’m excited to read it.

This is one of those books I’m tempted to steal from the fundraiser. I’m a big fan of Brett’s work, and I missed my chance to buy this from Sub Press. Now it’s sold out and would cost me hundreds of dollars.

From Blood of the Muse:

“If The Painted Man was a Director’s Cut DVD, The Great Bazaar and Other Stories would be the second disc filled with all the Extras. More story, deleted scenes, a ward grimoire; it’s all here. […] Fans of The Painted Man will love The Great Bazaar and Other Stories. People not familiar with Brett’s work will find this a great introduction.”

This book isn’t published yet, which means y’all can still pre-order it from Sub Press. If you want a copy, that might be a good idea, as I’m expecting it to sell out like the book up above.

From Sub Press:

“Return to the world of The Warded Man and The Desert Spear in an illustrated new novella by Peter V. Brett. […]  Arlen Bales is seventeen, an apprentice Messenger in brand new armor, about to go out for the first time alongside a trained Messenger on a simple overnight trip. Instead Arlen finds himself alone on a frozen mountainside, carrying a dangerous cargo to Count Brayan’s gold mine, one of the furthest points in the duchy.”

Here’s another out-of-print treasure from Sub Press. These signed, leather-bound, numbered books are worth hundreds of bucks on the collector’s market.

I love Butcher’s Dresden Files and really enjoyed this story. I was surprised, but pleased, when I discovered it wasn’t from Harry’s point of view. The story follows Thomas Raith instead, and gives cool insight into his character.

Rob H. Bedford for SFFWorld says, “Backup is a solid entry to the background of the Dresden Files, a terrific story in and of itself, and the book itself looks to be a great collector’s item for both fans of Butcher’s Dresden Files or of good storytelling matched up with terrific art. Obviously from what my review says, I’d highly recommend Backup.”

This was nominated for an Eisner award, so you know it’s got some mojo.

Publishers Weekly says, “This first of hopefully several volumes delivers on all counts, boasting a solid story bolstered by exceptional work from Chilean artist Rodriguez….”

From Subterranean Press:

“The three Locke children–survivors of a horrific home invasion that claimed their father–have just begun to rebuild their lives when little Bode discovers a key with an incredible power. […] Written by Hill and featuring the mind-bending art of Gabriel Rodriguez, the second installment of Locke & Key is one head-trip you won’t forget.”

Now out-of-print, A Fantasy Medley features stories by Kelley Armstrong, Kate Elliott, C.E. Murphy, and Robin Hobb.

From Publishers Weekly (Starred Review): “Four fantasy heavyweights contribute original tales featuring intriguing female protagonists to this enthralling anthology.”

From The Agony Column: Deadman’s Road is generously illustrated by the incredibly talented Glen Chadbourne with lots of his ultra-detailed pen-and-ink drawings. [….] There’s a real sense of class and detail and craft combined with truly disturbing horror and, ever present, Lansdale’s unmatched sense of fun. Stepping into this book is like stepping into an old theater, running a black and white film you’ve never seen before.”

They say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover…. but damn, that’s a really nice cover.

Jay Lake is one of those writers that makes me look like a chump, turning out one quality book after another.

The San Francisco Book Review says, “Jay Lake is a first-class wordsmith, an author who relishes the possibilities of language, utilizing words to their utmost to craft incredibly detailed worlds both hauntingly familiar and mind-bogglingly different.”

The Library Journal says, “The author of The Engineer Trilogy has written a mesmerizing short novel that combines fictional autobiography with political intrigue and the art of the confidence man… History rewrites itself at every turn in this tale of an alchemist whose own base metal becomes, at last, pure gold.”

From Subterranean Press:

“Featuring new stories from the bestselling and brightest writers working in the genre, including: New York Times bestselling authors Scott Lynch and Garth Nix; genre greats Michael Moorcock (with an all-new Elric novella), Michael Shea (with a fully authorized new Cugel the Clever adventure), Robert Silverberg (with an all-new Majipoor tale), Glen Cook (with an all-new Black Company story), Gene Wolfe, and C. J. Cherryh; and hot new writers who’ve been re-inventing swords and sorcery like Steven Erikson, Joe Abercrombie, Tim Lebbon, and many more.”

This book should look familiar to many of you.

You can’t trust me to be objective about my own book, so here’s a quote from the San Francisco Book Review:

“In what is by far the funniest and most original book of the year (so far), Rothfuss shows off his ability to think and create outside of the expected. The story is pure comic genius that will be fun and funny for parents and children. The illustrations, not to be outdone, offer subtle little quirks that, after reading the book multiple times, shine through and give it lasting re-read incentive.”

Remember folks, for every 10 dollars you donate to Heifer International, you get a chance to win these books and hundreds of others like them. Plus there’s the whole helping make the world a better place thing. That’s nice too.

And don’t forget, I’m matching 50% of all donations made. So why not head over to my page at Team Heifer and chip in. Trust me. You’ll feel great afterward.

Or, if you want to go back to the main page for Worldbuilders, you can click HERE.

Posted in Subterranean Press, The Adventures of The Princess and Mr. Whiffle, Worldbuilders 2010 | By Pat10 Responses

A Veritable Cornucopia of Signed Books

This is a Worldbuilders blog.

Here’s some more books, folks. And as you can see, we’ve been saving some of the best for last.

Also, in the interest of complete honesty, I’m over-tired and over-caffeinated right now. This makes me punchy, which means I probably shouldn’t be doing anything delicate like writing book descriptions.

Still, the fundraiser ends on January 15th, which means I really need to get these posted sooner rather than later. So I’m going to apologize in advance for anything bizarre or inappropriate I might say below.

Sorry.

  • An Advance Reading Copy of Neil Gaiman‘s American Gods. Signed by the author.


A great book, and I’m not just saying that because a chunk of it is set in Wisconsin. I’m saying that because I’m a complete geek for Neil Gaiman *and* a big chunk of it is set in Wisconsin.

“Original, engrossing, and endlessly inventive; a picaresque journey across America where the travelers are even stranger than the roadside attractions.” – George R. R. Martin

  • A hardcover copy of Small Favor – a Novel of the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher. Signed by the author.


Jim Butcher is another one of my favorite authors. In fact, he was one of the first authors I wrote about on the blog a long while back. I continue to love him despite the fact that writes two extremely well-crafted novels every year, thereby making me look like a chump.

From Publishers Weekly, “Butcher smoothly manages a sizable cast of allies and adversaries, doles out needed backstory with crisp efficiency and sustains just the right balance of hair’s-breadth tension and comic relief.”


“Crystal Rain is refreshing and imaginative, an exotic stew of cultures, myths, and technology.” –Kevin J. Anderson


Anyone who’s read the acknowledgments in NOTW knows I owe Kevin Anderson a great debt of thanks, as he helped get me started in the publishing world. On top of that, I now owe him even *more* thanks for donating this lovely ARC…

Publisher’s Weekly says, “Anderson’s sizzling sci-fi thriller resurrects the technology of miniaturization introduced in the 1966 film Fantastic Voyage. […] Casual sci-fi fans as well as newcomers to the genre will enjoy this well-paced, energetic narrative.”

  • A set of Jonathan Green‘s Pax Britannia: Unnatural History, Leviathan Rising and Human Nature. Unnatural History and Leviathan Rising are signed by the author.


From the back of the book: In two scant months the nation, and all her colonies, will celebrate 160 years of Queen Victoria’s glorious reign. But all is not well at the heart of the empire of Magna Britannia. A chain of events is about to be set in motion that, if not stopped, could lead to a world-shattering conclusion. It begins with a break-in at the Natural History Museum. A night watchman is murdered. An eminent Professor of Evolutionary Biology goes missing. Then a catastrophic Overground rail-crash unleashes the dinosaurs of London Zoo!

  • A copy of Just Desserts by Simon Haynes. Signed by the author.


Signed by the author, the merest touch of this book will cure scrofula. At least that’s what the promotional blurb says.

The Specusphere urges readers to “enjoy another fast and furious ride with the zap-happy, zany rapscallions.”

  • A copy of Space Magic, stories by David D. Levine. This special signed hardcover edition is limited to 100 numbered copies; this book is copy number AC-6.


Like Nnedi, David Levine is one of the folks I met when we got published in Writers of the Future Volume 18 together. David writes short stories like I’ll never be able to, and over the years his advice about how the publishing world works has been invaluable to me.

Space Magic is his first short story collection. His “Tk’Tk’Tk” won the 2006 Hugo Award for Best Short Story and “The Tail of the Golden Eagle” was a previous Hugo nominee; it also appeared on the Nebula preliminary ballot and was a finalist for the Sturgeon Award and Locus Award.

It’s also important to note that this limited edition harcover of the book is numbered AC-6. Which means that it’s harder to hit than AC-10.

  • A copy of Saundra Mitchell‘s debut novel, Shadowed Summer. Signed by the author.


Booklist says that Shadowed Summer is, “Highly atmospheric, with pulse-pounding suspense and an elegiac ending.”

You hear that? Elegiac. How come nobody calls my book elegiac? I’m all kinds of elegiac.

  • A copy of The Six Sacred Stones by Matthew Reilly. Signed by the author.


“The wildly imaginative Reilly has taken inspiration from comics, video games, thrillers and Code-style puzzle novels to create this rocket-fueled sequel to his 7 Deadly Wonders […] A tongue-in-cheek quality will help readers find this outlandish adventure thrilling.” — Publishers Weekly


“Wilson’s fantasy debut recalls the complexity of classic epic fantasy in the tradition of Robert Jordan. Combining adventure with mystery and memorable characters, this is a good choice for committed fantasy fans.” —Jackie Cassada, Library Journal

  • Two hardcover copies of To Ride Hell’s Chasm by Janny Wurts. Signed by the author.


“Janny Wurts writes with astonishing energy… it outght to be illegal for one person to have so much talent.” – Stephen R. Donaldson

  • One set of Webmage, Cybermancy, CodeSpell and MythOS by Kelly McCullough. All signed by the author.


“The most enjoyable science fantasy book I’ve read in the last four years.” – Christopher Stasheff

  • A set of Naked and Barrel Fever: Stories and Essays by David Sedaris. Both signed by the author.


David Sedaris is a brilliant author I only discovered a couple years ago when someone advised me to listen to his short piece “6-8 Black Men” on Youtube.

After less than a minute, Sedaris had a fan for life.

I’ve been meaning to post a blog recommending Sedaris’ books for almost a year. But something always seems to get in the way. For example, the last time I sat down to write a post about it, I got hung up about whether or not I wanted to use the word “boner” in the blog. Then I started to write a blog about how avoiding the use of the word “boner” revealed a lot about my revision process. Then I stopped writing that blog and did something else. True story.

Anyway, a couple months ago, I found out that David Sedaris was on tour here in the US. What’s more, I found out that he was making at stop Stevens Point. I still can’t imagine why he was here in Podunk, WI. His tour schedule was literally something like this: San Diego > San Francisco > Los Angeles > Salt Lake City > Stevens Point > New York. My suspicion is that he lost a bet with God.

Sedaris gave a great performance and was incredibly gracious in person, though I’m pretty sure I made a bit of an ass of myself when I got to the front of the signing line. I bought a couple of his books and rather than have him sign them to me, I had him just sign his name so I could use them for this fundraiser. Also a true story.

Washington Post Book World describes Sedaris as “Shrewd, wickedly funny […] one of America’s most prickly, and most delicious, young comic talents.”

There we go. Now I can go to sleep. Hopefully I didn’t say anything too awful…. If I did, enjoy it while it lasts, because I’ll probably just delete it when I wake up later today…

Remember folks, for every 10 dollars you donate to Heifer International, you get a chance to win these books and hundreds of others like them. Plus there’s the whole helping make the world a better place thing. That’s nice too.

And don’t forget, I’m matching 50% of all donations made. So why not head over to my page at Team Heifer and chip in. Trust me. You’ll feel great afterward.

Or, if you want to go back to the main page for Worldbuilders, you can click HERE.

With thanks to our sponsor, Subterranean Press.

Posted in my dumbness, Neil Gaiman, recommendations, Subterranean Press, Worldbuilders 2009 | By Pat20 Responses

What happens at DragonCon….

Okay, a lot of you asked about the picture I posted up about a week ago:

True, the vast majority of the questions were variations on the theme of “what the hell?” But I still figure it could do with a little explanation.

While cruising around DragonCon, I tried to find a good present for Sarah, my girlfriend. I picked up the catgirl hat for her because I figured she would get a kick out of it.

About half an hour later I wander by a bookseller, and who do I see sitting at the autographing table but John Scalzi and Tobias Bucknell. Both authors, bloggers, and acquaintances of mine, it’s safe to say that the sheer awesome manliness radiating out from the two of them combined was overwhelming.

Perhaps I exaggerate slightly. I can’t honestly say it was overwhelming. Truth be told, it was just whelming. I was whelmed.

Anyway, I started to wander over to chat with them, then realized a golden opportunity lay in front of me….

Needless to say, they were horrified and amused. Scalzi actually borrowed my camera and took this picture of me, while Toby snapped his own.

That picture Toby posted up on his own website, offering a prize to the person who posted the funniest caption. There were over 80 of them there last time I looked, and I have to say, it’s been a long time since I laughed that hard.

You should go check it out.

Later all,

pat

Posted in conventions, meeting famous people, my dumbness | By Pat22 Responses
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