Tag Archives: Jonathan Oliver

John Jarrold’s Corner: Babylon Steel by Gaie Sebold – Debut Acquired by Solaris Books

Great news from John Jarrold regarding an intriguing-sounding debut which I’ll definitely be reading!


Jonathan Oliver, commissioning editor of Solaris Books, has acquired BABYLON STEEL, the opening volume of a fast-moving fantasy series from debut novelist Gaie Sebold. The agent was John Jarrold, and the deal was for UK/US rights. The book is due for publication late in 2011.

Babylon Steel, ex-sword-for-hire, ex…other things, runs the best brothel in Scalentine; city of many portals, two moons, and a wide variety of races, were-creatures, and religions, not to mention the occasional insane warlock.

She’s not having a good week. The Vessels of Purity are protesting against brothels, women in the trade are being attacked, it’s tax time, and there’s not enough money to pay the bill. So when the mysterious Darask Fain offers her a job finding a missing girl, Babylon decides to take it. But the missing girl is not what she seems, and neither is Darask Fain. In the meantime two moon is approaching, and more than just a few night’s takings are at risk when Babylon’s hidden past reaches out to grab her by the throat.

“I’m delighted for Gaie,” said John Jarrold. “Her writing and story-telling are remarkable – and she is also outstandingly witty. And it’s great to get another new novelist out there!”

“It’s terrifically exciting to discover a new fantasy author who is producing fresh, interesting and funny work that’s also so vastly inventive,” Jonathan Oliver said. “Readers will fall in love with Gaie’s world and her brilliant central character.”

Gaie Sebold works for a charity. She has won a few awards for poetry and has sold short stories to magazines including Black Gate, Legend and City Slab, the recent Under the Rose anthology (Norilana) and the forthcoming End of an Aeon anthology (Fairwood Press). She is an occasional performance poet. She was born in the US but has lived in the UK most of her life, currently in an ‘up and coming’ area of London which doesn’t appear to have got very high yet. She is a member of T Party Writers, a London-based genre critique group. She has said this about the genesis of the book:

“The idea of having a heroine who was a Madam in a world where the clientele might be, shall we say, interesting, is one I have had in mind for several years. But the story didn’t really coalesce until I started thinking about where some of those clientele, and indeed the Madam herself, might have come from, and then the city-state of Scalentine and Babylon started to develop together.

“I wanted to write about people working in the Oldest Profession who were not necessarily villains or victims: but people doing a job, and taking pride in their work; and for sexual work to be part of celebrating and respecting sexuality, rather than something that diminishes or dirties it. Though I’m not ignoring the ugly aspects of real-life sex work, that wasn’t what I wanted to deal with in this story. After all, Scalentine is a fantasy city: dealing with possibilities that don’t exist, or barely exist, in our own world, is one of the things I think fantasy is for.

“I have also always been fascinated by the idea of different worlds that are only a mirror’s breadth away, and of different species living cheek by jowl. For me Scalentine is rather like my own peculiar version of London; where lots of different people and cultures end up creating a fascinating if not always easy mix.

“Also, of course, I just wanted to have fun: with Babylon and her crew, of whom I have become increasingly fond; and with Scalentine’s multiplicity of characters, races, species, portals and possibilities. Which I did.”

Sounds pretty interesting! Congrats to Gaie and to Solaris!



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The Macht are Returning: Read a Sample Chapter of Corvus by Paul Kearney

I had another post in mind but when I saw this (via my trusty Google Reader) I knew that I had to share it:

Solaris Books is offering a free sample chapter of Corvus (click the link to pre-order from Amazon US), the sequel to Paul Kearney‘s first Macht novel, The Ten Thousand (reviewed here). Here’s the blurb for you:

It is twenty-three years since a Macht army fought its way home from the heart of the Asurian Empire. The man who came to lead that army, Rictus, is now a hard-bitten mercenary captain, middle-aged and tired. He wants nothing more than to lay down his spear and become the farmer that his father was. But fate has different ideas. A young warleader has risen to challenge the order of things in the very heartlands of the Macht. A soldier of genius, he takes city after city, and reigns over them as king. What is more, he had heard of the legendary leader of the Ten Thousand. His name is Corvus, and the rumours say that he is not even fully human. He means to make himself absolute ruler of all the Macht. And he wants Rictus to help him.

And here’s the cover, in all its awesomeness (yeah, I guess I’m a bit biased – we’re talking Macht here, people!):

Click here for a link to Solaris’ blog, where you’ll be able to download the chapter. I’ve got a feeling that I’m going to be hounding Jonathan Oliver for a copy of this one… 😉

Oh, and just because I’m such a fan of the Macht (these guys are, for me, in the same class as Steven Erikson’s Bridgeburners), here’s the cover for the third novel, the awesomely titled The Kings of Morning:

Cannot wait to disappear into these novels!



Posted by on September 21, 2010 in Announcements


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John Jarrold’s Corner: New 3-Book Deal for Rowena Cory Daniels

Hey everyone, some great news from John Jarrold! Here are the details:



Jonathan Oliver, commissioning editor of Solaris Books, has concluded a three-book deal with Australian fantasy writer Rowena Cory Daniells. The agent is John Jarrold, and the deal is for world rights. The books are due for publication in 2012.

Solaris have just published the first volume of Daniells’ KING ROLEN’S KIN trilogy, THE KING’S BASTARD successfully in July 2010, with the second and third volumes following in August and September this year.

The new series is called THE FIRST T’EN and follows the fate of a tribe of dispossessed mystics, the T’Enatuath.

Rowena Cory Daniells first became involved in speculative fiction in 1976. Since then she has run a bookshop, then a graphic art studio where she illustrated children’s books, had 6 children in 10 years, sold nearly 30 children’s books and an earlier fantasy trilogy internationally, established R&D Studios and served on the management committees of state and national arts organisations. She lives by the bay in Brisbane with her husband and children, and has a Masters in Arts (Research).


This is great news! I’m looking forward to getting started with Rowena’s work – the first book in her first trilogy, The King’s Bastard, will be hitting the shelves here in SA in September! 🙂

(Nicked this from Rowena’s site – couldn’t find a jpeg of The Usurper)

Congrats to Rowena, Jonathan and John! 🙂



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