Tachyon tidbits featuring Lavie Tidhar, Michael Swanwick, Brandon Sanderson, and Patricia A. McKillip
The latest reviews and mentions of Tachyon titles and authors from around the web.
Lavie Tidhar (Photo: Kevin Nixon. © Future Publishing 2013), Michael Swanwick (Beth Gwinn), Brandon Sanderson (Ceridwen [CC BY 3.0] via Wikimedia Commons), and Patricia A. McKillip
Eliot Peper of CHICAGO REVIEW OF BOOKS interview Lavie Tidhar about the complicated, touching, and multifaceted CENTRAL STATION.
Reading CENTRAL STATION by Lavie Tidhar feels like falling into someone else’s dream. Using a far future Tel Aviv as his canvas, Tidhar weaves an emotionally driven tale that interrogates the human impact of digital technology. The story is complicated, touching, and multifaceted. It left me with a not unpleasant sense of melancholy, as if I were leaving behind close friends who I wouldn’t be seeing for a long time.
Fans of science fiction and fantasy will relish the many hidden references to genre tropes and classics. Tidhar won the British Science Fiction Award, World Fantasy Award, and CENTRAL STATION has been praised by heavy-hitters like Alastair Reynolds, Ken Liu, and NPR. He was kind enough to answer a few questions about his new book.
Eliot Peper: The story is full of lovingly rendered references to the larger body of SF/F. Who are some of the lesser-known writers that have influenced you? What’s the latest book you fell in love with?
Lavie Tidhar: I’d say Cordwainer Smith, most obviously. To me he’s probably one of the three most significant American science fiction writers of the 20th century, but he’s virtually unknown. Simak, too, with his pastoral SF. C.L. Moore. I don’t read that many genre books anymore — the last one I read was Alastair Reynolds’ SLOW BULLETS, which I liked a lot. The other thing you might notice in CENTRAL STATION is also a lot of throwaway references to Israeli SF/F and pulps, which, I suspect, is as obscure as it gets! I just write these weird little jokes in to amuse myself, but it’s nice when someone picks up on them from time to time.
Eliot Peper: CENTRAL STATION is relatively short as novels go, but it feels sprawling and inclusive, almost like a magic house that’s larger inside than without. What was your creative process like for the book? Did you outline or just start writing?
Lavie Tidhar: I worked on it, on and off, for about 6 years! It was my crazy little side project, basically. I’m still amazed it got published! It’s interesting working on it in chunks, because you’re plotting individual stories and then fitting them into the overall narrative — but I wasn’t going for plot much with this, I was taking a very different tack to my more commercial novels, and just exploring people, relationships. I was very much exploring as I went along. And it’s set in a wider universe I’ve been writing about, on and off, for over a decade, so it was easy to fit in a lot of material that, if you follow the thread, will lead to another story entirely.
At RED WEATHER REVIEW, Joseph Barbato shared a quote from Michael Swanwick’s “For I Have Lain Me Down on the Stone of Loneliness and I’ll Not Be Back Again,” that appears in NOT SO MUCH, SAID THE CAT.
The bullet scars were still visible on the pillars of the General Post Office in Dublin, almost two centuries after the 1916 uprising. That moved me more than I expected. But what moved me even more was standing at the exact same spot, not two blocks away, where my great-great grandfather saw Gerry Adams strolling down O’Connell Street on Easter morning of ’96, the eightieth anniversary of that event, returning from a political rally with a single bodyguard to one side of him and a local politico to the other. It gave me a direct and simple connection to the tangled history of that tragic land.
Big Brandon Sanderson news via TOR.COM.
DMG Entertainment has made a licensing and film deal for the rights to Brandon Sanderson’s Cosmere novels, according to Variety. The group is already fast-tracking an adaptation of the first volume of the Stormlight Archive fantasy epic: THE WAY OF THE KINGS.
Due to the scope of Sanderson’s universe, DMG has likened this acquisition to obtaining the rights for a comic book universe, as many of Sanderson’s book series are contained within an overarching “Cosmere”. While the Cosmere contains such varied properties as The Stormlight Archive (epic fantasy), Mistborn (urban tech fantasy), White Sand (graphic novel adventure), and more, readers have only been given small hints as to how these massive epics tie together into a singular universe.
A few words from Brandon Sanderson on the development:
“The people at DMG aren’t just producers or financiers. They’re fans. From the first moment we met, I knew they understood my vision and goals for the Cosmere, and I’ve been excited to work with them in bringing their vision for the universe to the screen.”
PUBLISHERS WEEKLY named Patricia A. McKillip’s KINGFISHER as one of the best SF/Fantasy/Horror books of 2016.
McKillip mixes myth and magic with everyday mundanity in a wonderfully whimsical and quirky novel in which the son of a sorceress goes in search of his father, a knight; a werewolf’s daughter gets a job working with a most peculiar chef; and a young prince learns of his strange heritage. This gorgeously written story turns the standard coming-of-age fantasy quest on its head.
For more info about CENTRAL STATION, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover by Sarah Anne Langton
For more info about SLOW BULLETS, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover art by Thomas Canty
Design by Elizabeth Story
For more information on NOT SO MUCH, SAID THE CAT, visit the Tachyon page.
Cover design by Elizabeth Story
For more on THE EMPEROR’S SOUL, visit the Tachyon page
Cover art by Alexander Nanitchkov
Design by Elizabeth Story