Marcher on offer

• March 15th, 2016 • Posted in All posts, News & events

Just to let you know that the signed hardback edition of Marcher from Newcon Press, with its striking cover by Ben Baldwin, is currently on special offer here, along with a number of other publications from Ian Whates’ excellent imprint.

aaa marcher cover


Mother of Eden shortlisted for BSFA award.

• February 8th, 2016 • Posted in All posts, News & events

I’m really delighted to learn that Mother of Eden has been shortlisted for the BSFA’s Best Novel award for 2015.   Thanks very much to all the BSFA members who voted for the book.   I’m so glad you liked it.  Writing fiction is a bit like being a puppeteer.  You move the puppets around, you make them speak, but you yourself can never be completely sure what will come over to an audience which hasn’t been involved with all the glue and string and papier-mache.  It’s a very good feeling, and a big relief, when the audience applauds.

The award event itself will be on Easter saturday, at Eastercon.  It’s up against some pretty tough competition: Dave Hutchinson’s Europe at Midnight,  Aliette de Bodard’s The House of Shattered Wings, Ian McDonald’s  Luna: New Moon, and Justina Robson’s Glorious Angels.  I’ve always thought that it doesn’t really make much sense for the competitors for a single prize to wish each other good luck, but, to hell with logic, I know it’s a good feeling to win a prize, and I wish that feeling for all of us.  After all, who knows, the universe may split into five at that point.

PS: Puppeteer or not, one thing I am pretty confident of is that, if you liked Mother of Eden, you’ll love Daughter of Eden, which should be out later on this year.


Launch for Mother of Eden, July 15th

• June 29th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events

There’ll be a launch event at Heffer’s bookshop in Cambridge (my home town), for Mother of Eden, on July 15th, 6.30 – 8.00.   Hope you can come!   Free tickets available via this link.

And here’s a nice review of the book itself from Gareth D. Jones.



I, clawfoot

• June 26th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, Interviews etc, News & events

Here is a guest post I did for Sarah Chorn, who edits a column on SF signal called Special Needs in Strange Worlds.   I am very grateful to Sarah for giving me an opportunity to discuss the people with disabilities who appear in Dark Eden and Mother of Eden (the batfaces, clawfeet and slowheads), as I don’t think anyone has specifically asked me about them before and they are absolutely central to the world of Eden.

In this post, I also reveal that I am in a way the original for the so-called clawfeet.  Which, now I think about it, may partly explain my decision to make the clawfooted Jeff Redlantern very wise and absolutely irresistible to women.

*   *   *

Incidentally, in the post I mention a story (“Jazamine in the Green Wood”) which appeared in my short story collection, The Turing Test.  The collection also includes the short story called “Dark Eden” which provides the background to the novels, and twelve others. (Most people seem to like “Piccadilly Circus” the best, with “Karel’s Prayer” probably coming second.)   So I’ll take this opportunity to mention that this (prizewinning) collection is now available on kindle in the UK at the ludicrously cheap price of £1.99.  Less than a coffee in a cardboard cup.


Mother of Eden ebook problem resolved

• June 20th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events

I’m really sorry that a number of people in the UK who bought e-book versions of Mother of Eden over the last two weeks found that it was defective, with chunks of missing text.  (There’s been no problem in the US as far as I’m aware.)

This problem has now been resolved.  The faulty file has been replaced, and I’m assured that if you bought the e-book in the last few days it will be fine.

If you bought one before the problem was fixed, you will automatically be sent a copy of the corrected version, though I’m afraid this may take a few weeks.

If you still have queries please  email publicity at


Mother of Eden launch events, Cambridge and London

• May 16th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events

Not one but two launch events for Mother of Eden.  One at Forbidden Planet, Cambridge, on Burleigh St, Thursday 4th June, 6-7.

One at Forbidden Planet’s London Megastore at 179 Shaftesbury Ave, on Saturday 6th June, 1-2.



Mother of Eden interview

• May 11th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, Interviews etc, News & events

Here is an interview with Paul Semel about Mother of Eden.  (Many thanks, Paul, for your interest.)  Paul also interviewed me last year about Dark Eden, and that interview is here.

Incidentally Mother of Eden is out in the UK on June 4th (in spite of some slightly confusing statements on Amazon UK, which the publishers are currently fixing).  It’s out in the US this week.

In the picture I’m standing on a Roman road outside Cambridge, where I go to walk our dogs.   Sort of appropriate really, in a book which talks a lot about living among the residue of the past.


Mother of Eden en Francais

• April 21st, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events

I’m delighted to say that Presses de la Cité (who already publish the French version of DARK EDEN) have acquired French rights in MOTHER OF EDEN.


Cover of Presses de la Cite edition of Dark Eden




• March 26th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events

This is me at Dortcon, with the other guests of honour, artist Lothar Bauer on the left of the picture (a man of few words, who says his pictures speak for him: we are flanked by two of them here) and fellow SF writer Karsten Kruschel on the right.

Dortcon pic

As with Sferakon last year in Zagreb, I was a little daunted in prospect by the idea of attending a convention whose primary language would not be English, but (also as with Sferakon) I was made extremely welcome, people put themselves to a lot of trouble to make sure I was included, and I had a great weekend.  Special thanks to Arno and Gabi (my main hosts), Michael who first suggested inviting me, and Gregor who acted as my interpreter when one was needed (making me feel like some kind of international statesman, as he murmured into my ear.)

I know a huge amount of work and worry, over a long period of time, goes into planning these events, which most attendees (including me) don’t really see.  What I see, and most attendees see, is a little peaceful island, where gentle and imaginative people can gather for a couple of days of conversation and friendship and playfulness.

This was my first real visit to Germany. Fascinating listening to German spoken all around me.  Perhaps because, from an early age, my sisters and I were cared for by German au pairs, I’ve always liked the sound of the language.  I find it musical, where many English people find it harsh, and could quite happily just sit and listen to its cadences, even if I didn’t have someone to interpret.  The tantalising thing about it is that, though I can’t understand it, it’s so obviously a close cousin of English that I can’t quite let go of the idea that, if only I tried hard enough, I could.

It’s interesting how every country has its stories, its past events, it’s preoccupations, which it must keep going over and over, just as individuals have events in their own lives that they must visit and revisit over and over: the old DDR and what had happened to it when Germany was unified, for instance, was clearly one such topic, even more than twenty years on.

My fellow writer and guest of honour Karsten grew up in the DDR.  He told me all SF in the DDR had to depict a socialist future (so as not to violate the Marxist creed of the inevitable triumph of socialism).   When he studied for a PhD thesis on dystopian literature, he had to have special permission to look at George Orwell’s 1984, which was held in the university library but was forbidden to the general public.  He had to go to a special room to read it.

Now to me, that sounds like a scene from an SF novel in itself.


Dark Eden en Francais

• February 13th, 2015 • Posted in All posts, News & events


I’m delighted to say that Dark Eden will come out in French on April 2nd. The book will retain the English title.  This is the rather striking French cover design, which I see as the dark planet Eden against the brightness of Starry Swirl.