Episode 210: Genevieve Valentine and all the things

This week Gary and Jonathan are joined by the wonderful Genevieve Valentine who talks intelligently, coherently and very interestingly about television, film, her latest novel The Girls at the Kingfisher Club, writing for comics and her extended run with Catwoman, and a lot, lot more.

Genevieve’s brilliance is a little overshadowed by bumbling hosts, who were exceptionally bumbling this weekend, and by perfidious technology (for which our apologies to both you and to Genevieve). Nonetheless, we think there’s a lot worth listening to and hope you will persevere.
Our sincere thanks to Genevieve for making the time to record the podcast, and to all of you for listening. As always, we hope you enjoy the podcast.

Rebellion award winner and nominee sale

I am very lucky to be published by the wonderful team at Solaris, who have treated me incredibly well since we first worked on Engineering Infinity together. I’m currently working on several projects with them, and hope to still be working with them for some years.

They have just told me that they are holding a sale. If you like ebooks and if you can buy stuff in the UK, Rebellion is selling all of the ebooks they’ve published that have been nominated for or have won awards. There’s some pretty cool stuff in there, along with my own Infinity and other books.

If you’re looking for a great pre-Christmas bargain check it out!

Best of 2014 So Far – Part 1

I am going to do my best to summarise the #BestSFF2014 discussion happening here, on Twitter and on Facebook.  The list below is a quick summary of the first day of recommendations, omitting my own recommendations (this is about you!) and where someone recommends their own work (you need someone else to like it too!).  So here goes. If there are errors or omissions let me know!

[updated 30 November 2014]


Joe Anderton, Guardian
Alan Baxter, Bound
Monica Byrne, The Girl in the Road (first novel)
James L. Cambias, A Darkling Sea, (first novel)
Michel Faber, The Book of Strange New Things
Daryl Gregory, Afterparty
William Gibson, The Peripheral
Peter F. Hamilton, The Abyss Beyond Dreams
Nick Harkaway, Tigerman
Dave Hutchinson, Autumn in Europe
Simon Ings, Wolves
Chang-Rae Lee, On Such a Full Sea
Ann Leckie, Ancillary Sword
Liu Cixin, The Three-Body Problem
Emily St John Mandel, Station Eleven
David Mitchell, The Bone Clocks
Claire North, The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
Paul Park,  All Those Vanished Engines
Richard Powers, Orfeo
Hannu Rajaniemi, The Causal Angel
Adam Roberts, Bete
James Smythe, No Harm Can Come to a Good Man
James Smythe, The Echo
Charles Stross, The Rhesus Chart
Sarah Tolmie, The Stone Boatmen
Jeff VanderMeer, The Southern Reach Trilogy
Jo Walton, My Real Children
Peter Watts, Echopraxia
Will Wiles, The Way Inn
David Wingrove, The Empire of Time


Katherine Addison, The Goblin Emperor
Elizabeth Bear, Steles of the Sky
Lauren Beukes, Broken Monsters
Robert J. Bennett, City of Stairs
Rene Denfield, The Enchanted
Max Gladstone, Full-Fathom Five
Lev Grossman, The Magician’s Land
Robin Hobb, Fool’s Assassin
Charlie N. Holmberg, The Paper Magician.
Kameron Hurley, The Mirror Empire
Jay Kristoff, Endsinger
Richard K. Morgan The Dark Defiles
Brandon Sanderson. Words of Radiance
Mark Smylie, The Barrow
Brian Stavely, The Emperor’s Blades


Joe Abercrombie, Half a King
Gwenda Bond, Girl on a Wire
Alaya Dawn Johnson, Love is the Drug
Robin LaFevers, Mortal Heart
Marie Lu, The Young Elites
A.S. King, Glory O’Briens History of the Future
Jaclyn Moriarty, The Cracks in the Kingdom
Garth Nix Clariel
Danielle Paige, Dorothy Must Die
Tricia Sullivan, Shadowboxer
Greg Van Eekhout, California Bones


The End is Nigh, John Joseph Adams ed.
Upgraded, Neil Clarke ed.
Suspended in Dusk, Andrew Dewar ed.
War Stories, Jaym Gates & Andrew Liptak eds.
Kaleidoscope: Diverse YA Fantasy, Alisa Krasnostein & Julia Rios eds.
Infinite Science Fiction One, Dany G Zuwen & Joanna Jackson eds


Mike Allen, Unseaming
Chaz Brenchley, Bitter Waters
Adam-Troy Castro, Her Husband’s Hands and Other Stories
Zen Cho, Spirits Abroad
Eileen Gunn, Questionable Practices
Stephen Graham Jones, After the People Lights Have Gone Off
Helen Marshall, Gifts for the Ones Who Come After
K.J. Parker, Academic Exercises
Robert Shearman, They Do the Same Things Different There
Angela Slatter, The Bitterwood Bible and Other Stories


Octavia Cade, Trading Rosemary
Adam-Troy Castro, The Thing About Shapes to Come, Lightspeed
John Chu, Double Time, Kaleideoscope
Haddayr Copley-Woods, Belly
Ruthanna Emrys, The Litany of Earth, Tor.com
K.M. Ferebee , The Earth and Everything Under, Shimmer
Eugie Foster, When it Ends, He Catches Her
Maria Dahvana Headley, If You Were a Tiger
S.L. Huang, Hunting Monsters, Book Smugglers
Nancy Kress ,Yesterday’s Kin, Tachyon
Eliot Langley, A Place Without Monuments and Endings, Clarkesworld
Ken Liu, In The Loop, War Stories
Ken Liu, Running Shoes, SQ Magazine 16
Karin Lowachee, Enemy States, War Stories
Usman T. Malik, Resurrection Points
Sunny Moraine, To Increase His Wondrous Greatnesse More
Sunny Moraine, What Glistens Back
T R Napper, Dark on Darkling Earth, Interzone 254
Garth Nix, Shay Corsham Worsted, Fearful Symmetries
Yukimi Ogawa, Rib, Strange Horizons
Thomas Olde Heuvelt, The Day the World Turned Upside Down, Lightspeed
Suzanne Palmer, Shatterdown, Asimov’s
Tony Pi, No Sweeter Art, Beneath Ceaseless Skies
Alastair Reynolds, In Babelsberg, Reach for Infinity
Mary Rickert, The Mothers of Voorhisville, Tor.com
Chris Roberson, Gold Mountain, Clarkesworld
Sofia Samatar, Walkdog, Kaleidoscope
John Scalzi, Unlocked, Tor.com
Angela Slatter, The Way of All Flesh, Suspended in Dusk
Natalia Theodoridou, The Eleven Holy Numbers of the Mechanical Soul
E. Catherine Tobler, Migratory Patterns of Underground Birds
E Catherine Tobler, We As One Trailing Embers, Beneath Ceaseless Skies
Genevieve Valentine, The Insects of Love, Tor.com
LaShawn M. Wanak, 21 Steps to Enlightenment (Minus One)
Kai Ashante Wilson, The Devil in America, Tor.com
J Y Yang, Patterns of a Murmuration in Billions of Data Points, Clarkesworld
Nathan Ballingrud, Atlas of Hell, Fearful Symmetries
Kaaron Warren, Bridge of Sighs, Fearful Symmetries
Sean Williams, The Cuckoo, Lightspeed

If I get a chance, I’ll try to add links and publication references, but no promises on that. This is a crazy time of the year, after all. And thanks to everyone who has taken part so far!

The Best of 2014 – Getting Started

Every year I end up spending a lot of time thinking and writing about the best science fiction and fantasy of the year. I started doing it for fun back in the 1980s and ended up doing it professionally starting back in the 1990s. I suppose it’s somewhere between insider pool and “Hey, read this!”

Basically, i spend a month talking to people about this. From early December through to early January I pour over year end lists, seasonal gift lists, emails from experts, notes from friends, and so many, many more people and lists emerge. I play a part in the main Locus Recommended Reading List and I help compile the Locus Short Fiction Recommended Reading List, and I compile my own table of contents for my best of the year.

This is work, but it’s also fun. And there’s always something overlooked. So every day for the next month I’m going to both you on Facebook and Twitter, and post stuff on my blog too. I want YOUR favorites of 2014. There are only two rules:

  1. the book or story must have been published for the first time in English in 2014, and
  2. you must LOVE it.

I want you to copy this and retweet it. I want you to tell friends. I’m going to try to respond to everyone and to look at new stuff as much as I can. And it will likely change what I recommend and what I think was the best of the year.

You can recommended anything to me, but I especially want:

  • your favorite novels of the year
  • your favorite short story collections of the year
  • your favorite anthologies of the year
  • your favorite short story of the year

Please recommended away! The hash tag is #BestSFF2014. Get involved! Tweet! Retweet!

Episode 209: The Beginning of the End of 2014

We went to Washington DC to celebrate the 40th World Fantasy Convention and came back to the first books and stories of 2014. As long-time listeners know, this is the time when the season turns, when work beings on summing up the year we’ve had, and when the old year ends and the new one begins. This episode, with brief and incoherent gift guide, is the beginning of the end of 2014.

As always, we hope you forgive the rambling and enjoy the episode. See you next week!