Strange Chemistry signs debut YA novelist T.L.CostaComments Off
Strange Chemistry, the YA imprint of Angry Robot Books, has announced the signing of T.L. Costa, with her debut novel Playing Tyler. This one book deal for World English Rights was concluded by Strange Chemistry’s Editor Amanda Rutter and Jenny Bent of The Bent Agency.
About Playing Tyler:
Tyler MacCandless can’t focus, even when he takes his medication. He can’t focus on school, on his future, on a book, on much of anything other than taking care of his older brother, Brandon, who’s in rehab for heroin abuse… again.
Tyler’s dad is dead and his mom has mentally checked out. The only person he can really count on is his Civilian Air Patrol Mentor, Rick. The one thing in life it seems he doesn’t suck at is playing video games, and, well, that’s probably not going to get him into college.
Just when it seems like his future is on a collision course with a life sentence at McDonald’s, Rick asks him to test a video game. If his score’s high enough, it could earn him a place in flight school and win him the future he was certain that he could never have. And when he falls in love with the game’s designer, the legendary gamer Ani, Tyler thinks his life might finally be turning around.
That is, until Brandon goes MIA from rehab and Tyler and Ani discover that the game is more than it seems. Now Tyler will have to figure out what’s really going on in time to save his brother… and prevent his own future from going down in flames.
Strange Chemistry’s Editor Amanda Rutter says: “This searing and hard-hitting novel, featuring the truly unique voice of Tyler, had me jumping out of my seat with excitement as I started reading it. It is visceral and gripping, and I think will speak to the teens of today. I’m delighted to welcome T.L. Costa to the growing ranks of our authors.”
Three-book deal with HarperCollins for Neil GaimanComments Off
Publishers Weekly reports that Neil Gaiman has signed a multi-book deal with HarperCollins. The deal involves three YA novels and two picture books. Publishers Weekly states:
“Both picture books will feature a new character created by Gaiman, a little panda named Chu, that is known for having an outsized sneeze. The first book, Chu’s Day, will be illustrated by Adam Rex; it is set for 8 January 2013.”
“The other three titles in the deal will include a middle-grade novel called Fortunately, the Milk, which will feature art by Skottie Young and which HarperCollins calls ‘an ode to the pleasure and wonders of storytelling itself.’ Gaiman will also write a sequel to the 2009 book Odd and the Frost Giants (also published by HarperCollins), which features characters from Norse mythology. The third novel in the deal will be a middle grade book, and is currently untitled.”
Two-book teen ghost deal with S&S for Curtis JoblingComments Off
Venetia Gosling, Editorial Director of Simon & Schuster Children’s Books in London, has acquired world rights in two teenage ghost novels by Curtis Jobling. The first novel, entitled Haunt, will be published in 2013, with the sequel following in 2014. The agent was John Jarrold.
Curtis is the author of four Wereworld fantasy novels published successfully by Puffin on both sides of the Atlantic, with two more volumes already signed up. He said, of this deal:
“I’m delighted to be working with Venetia and Simon & Schuster on Haunt. The book is ultimately about friendship, and how not even death’s bony fingers can tear it apart. I wanted to marry comedy and the supernatural together and write a ghostly tale from the point of view of a teenager whose life has been stolen away on the cusp of great things. Well, on the cusp of snogs from the girl of his dreams, anyway. I wondered whether an awkward, nerdy youth would draw on some profound inner power when faced with a limbo existence, haunting his best friend. As ill luck would have it, he becomes an awkward, nerdy ghost. I’d like to say that this isn’t semi-autobiographical, but who am I kidding?”
Curtis Jobling designed the BAFTA-winning Bob the Builder and is also the creator of Frankenstein’s Cat, the BBC’s hit children’s animation series based upon his book of the same name. In addition he has numerous shows in development with Disney, the BBC and others.
New YA novel from award-winning author Frances HardingeComments Off
“Child, thief, madman, spy – which speaks the truth and which one lies?
In the underground city of Caverna the world’s most skilled craftsmen toil in the darkness to create delicacies beyond compare – wines that can remove memories, cheeses that can make you hallucinate and perfumes that convince you to trust the wearer, even as they slit your throat.
The people of Caverna are more ordinary, but for one thing: their faces are as blank as untouched snow. Expressions must be learned, and only the famous Facesmiths can teach a person to show (or fake) emotion.
In this dark and distrustful world lives Neverfell, a little girl with no memory of her past and a face so terrifying to those around her that she must wear a mask at all times. But the secret behind Neverfell’s mask makes her more dangerous than even she knows, and it won’t stay hidden forever… ”
Frances Hardinge grew up in a huge old house that inspired her to write stories from an early age. She read English at Oxford University before a persistent friend encouraged her to send a few chapters of her book, Fly By Night, to a publisher. Macmillan made her an immediate offer and the book was published to huge critical acclaim, winning the Branford Boase First Novel award. A Face Like Glass is Frances’ fifth novel. Talking about where the idea for the book came from Frances had the following to say, “The core concept of A Face Like Glass has been nestling in my mind for a long time – a girl whose thoughts show in her face, and who thus becomes the ultimate luxury item in a decadent realm of perfect liars.”
The Ninnies by Paul Magrs.Book reviewComments Off
Reviewed by Chris Limb
Alan is fourteen and lives in a flat in Manchester with his heavily pregnant mum. Whilst mum believes that window cleaner dad has simply run off, Alan knows otherwise, having witnessed first hand his father being kidnapped by the mysterious beings known only as the Ninnies. The problem is that no-one aside from his school friend Amy Aziz plus Marlton and Bunty (the two strange old people who live in the flat upstairs) believe him…
This is a middle grade YA novel which, despite the cartoonish illustrations and playground name of the eponymous baddies, visits some very dark places indeed. In Alan the author has captured the thought processes and enthusiasms of a slightly geeky teenage boy perfectly –whilst he may very well feel more than simply friendship for his co-conspirator Amy it’s not something he would ever openly admit to. Besides, they’re both far too busy trying to uncover the Ninnies’ deadly secrets.
The humour and absurdity of parts of the storyline contrast nicely with the underlying eeriness of the premise, and despite the straightforward nature of the narrative there is plenty of mystery here – the origin of the Ninnies is never really explained and it is left to the reader to decide whether they come from outer space, a parallel dimension or a world of dark magic. The Ninnies themselves wouldn’t be out of place in a Stephen King novel, and their plan to enslave humanity by getting everyone addicted to potato based snacks containing disconcerting additives is an audacious one. Even if the resourceful Amy and Alan stop them this time there’s no guarantee that they won’t be back; the Buffy-esque research that the two teenagers undertake in the Esoteric Bookshop reveal that this kind of thing has been going on for centuries.
The playful horror rollercoaster of the main plot is interrupted halfway through by the birth of Alan’s baby sister Squoosh. This experience is well described, proving every bit as life changing and astonishing for our hero as the nocturnal shenanigans he’s recently been undertaking to get to the bottom of the whole conspiracy. Furthermore it gives him a renewed enthusiasm for the mission as he’s got a sister to protect now as well.
If this is a nightmare it’s one from which the reader awakes feeling invigorated and excited as well as scared. If you imagine that the ‘League of Gentlemen’ had written an episode of the ‘Sarah Jane Adventures’, which had then been novelised by Roald Dahl, you might come close to capturing the atmosphere and quality of ‘The Ninnies’.
Hints dropped in the last chapter indicate that this isn’t the last we’ve heard of Amy and Alan; I hope that the next volume of their adventures makes it into print sooner rather than later.
Angry Robot / Strange Chemistry: new author signingsComments Off
Angry Robot Books and its YA imprint, Strange Chemistry, have announced new author signings as follows.
Strange Chemistry has signed talented fantasy author, Martha Wells. Martha has been signed in a two-book deal, for World English Rights, negotiated between Strange Chemistry’s Amanda Rutter and Jennifer Jackson of the Donald Maass Literary Agency. The first of these books, a novel called Emilie and the Hollow World, will be published in Summer 2013.
Martha is the author of thirteen novels as well as a number of short stories and nonfiction articles. Her books include The Element of Fire (Tor, 1993), The Death of the Necromancer (Avon Eos, 1998), City of Bones (Tor, 1995), Wheel of the Infinite (HarperCollins Eos, 2000), and The Fall of Ile-Rien trilogy, published by HarperCollins Eos – The Wizard Hunters (2003), The Ships of Air (2004), and The Gate of Gods (2005) – set in the same world as The Element of Fire and The Death of the Necromancer.
Her newest fantasy novels are The Cloud Roads (Night Shade Books, March 2011), and the sequels, The Serpent Sea (Night Shade Books, January 2012) and The Siren Depths (forthcoming from Night Shade Books in December 2012).
Angry Robot has also announced a new two-book deal with rising star Chuck Wendig. Chuck’s first Angry Robot novel, Blackbirds, only hit the bookshelves for the first time a few weeks ago, but the response has already been so strong that Angry Robot moved quickly to sign him up for another two books.
The World English Rights deal, negotiated between Angry Robot editor Lee Harris and Stacia Decker of the Donald Maas Literary Agency, is for:
The Blue Blazes – the first in a new urban fantasy series in which lovable thug Mookie Pearl must contend with the criminal underworld, the supernatural underworld, a new drug that makes the invisible visible, and a rebellious teen daughter who opposes him at every turn.
Cormorant – a new tale of Miriam Black, the third book in a series that begins with Blackbirds and continues with Mockingbird (September 2012).
Both of Chuck’s new titles are scheduled for publication in 2013.
Strange Chemistry Signs Julianna Scott and Laura Lam for two books apieceComments Off
Strange Chemistry, the YA imprint of Angry Robot Books, is delighted to announce the signing of two more YA authors for 2013: Julianna Scott and Laura Lam.
Julianna Scott has been signed for a two-book deal – negotiated by Strange Chemistry’s Amanda Rutter and Carly Watters of the P.S. Literary Agency – starting with The Holders. Laura Lam has also signed a two-book deal – negotiated by Amanda Rutter and Juliet Mushens of Peters Fraser and Dunlop – starting with Pantomime. Both titles will be published in the Spring of 2013.
About The Holders by Julianna Scott:
She reluctantly agrees to join Ryland on his journey and what they find at St. Brigid’s is a world beyond their imagination. Little by little they piece together information about their family’s heritage and the legend of the Holder race that decrees Ryland is the one they’ve been waiting for.
But they are all, especially Becca, in for a surprise that will change what they thought they knew about themselves and their kind.”
About Pantomime by Laura Lam:
Iphigenia Laurus, or Gene, the daughter of a noble family, is uncomfortable in corsets and crinoline, and prefers climbing trees to debutante balls. Micah Grey, a runaway living on the streets, joins the circus as an aerialist’s apprentice and soon becomes the circus’s rising star.
But Gene and Micah have balancing acts of their own to perform, and a secret in their blood that could unlock the mysteries of Ellada.”
Strange Chemistry signs Jonathan L. HowardComments Off
Strange Chemistry, the YA imprint of Angry Robot Books, has announced the signing of another exciting author. Jonathan L. Howard has been signed for two books – the first of which is Katya’s World which will be published in November 2012 – in a deal for World English rights, concluded between Strange Chemistry’s Amanda Rutter and Sam Copeland, of Rogers, Coleridge and White Ltd.
About Katya’s World:
Katya Kuriakova doesn’t care much about ancient history. She is making her first submarine voyage as an apprentice navigator; the first nice, simple journey of what she expects to be a nice, simple career. But there is nothing nice and simple about the deep, black waters of Russalka and soon she will encounter pirates and war criminals, see death and tragedy at first hand, and realise that her world’s future lies on the narrowest of knife edges. For in the crushing depths lies a sleeping monster, an abomination of unknown
Jonathan L. Howard has been a game designer for the last twenty years, and a full-time author for the past three. He is the author of the Johannes Cabal series of novels.
More information can be found HERE
Angry Robot announces Strange Chemistry YA launch titles plus another Open Door submission periodComments Off
Strange Chemistry – the YA imprint of award-winning independent genre fiction publisher Angry Robot – has announced its first two titles: Shift by Kim Curran and Poltergeeks by Sean Cummings. Details HERE
Strange Chemistry have also announced an Open Door period, where the usual submission guidelines are relaxed to allow authors who are unagented to send in a manuscript. Full details HERE
Angry Robot have also announced its second Open Door submissions window. For two weeks in April, they will be accepting un-agented manuscripts from epic fantasy writers.
More information can be found HERE
YA novel from John Barrowman and his sisterComments Off
“Twins Matt and Emily Calder have imaginations so powerful that they can make art come to life. Their powers are sought by villains intent on accessing the terrors of Hollow Earth — a place where all the devils, demons and monsters ever imagined lie trapped for eternity. If Hollow Earth is breached, the world will be plunged into chaos. If Hollow Earth is breached . . .
… the twins are as good as dead.
Hollow Earth is a thrilling debut novel from the brother and sister team. The first in a compelling series, this page-turning fantasy for children echoes the likes of Christopher Paolini, Marcus Sedgwick and Rick Riordan.”
Full details HERE