• Fiona McIntosh: Voyager Author of the Month

    Fiona McIntosh was born and raised in Sussex in the UK, but also spent early childhood years in West Africa. She left a PR career in London to travel and settled in Australia in 1980. She has since roamed the world working for her own travel publishing company, which she runs with her husband. She lives in Adelaide with her husband and twin sons. Her website is at www.fionamcintosh.com.

    Her latest book, The Scrivener's Tale, is a stand-alone and takes us back to the world of Morgravia from her very first series, The Quickening:


    About The Scrivener's Tale:

    In the bookshops and cafes of present-day Paris, ex-psychologist Gabe Figaret is trying to put his shattered life back together. When another doctor, Reynard, asks him to help with a delusional female patient, Gabe is reluctant... until he meets her. At first Gabe thinks the woman, Angelina, is merely terrified of Reynard, but he quickly discovers she is not quite what she seems.

    As his relationship with Angelina deepens, Gabe's life in Paris becomes increasingly unstable. He senses a presence watching and following every move he makes, and yet he finds Angelina increasingly irresistible.

    When Angelina tells Gabe he must kill her and flee to a place she calls Morgravia, he is horrified. But then Angelina shows him that the cathedral he has dreamt about since childhood is real and exists in Morgravia.

    A special 10th Anniversary edition of her first fantasy book, Myrren's Gift, will be released in December!

     

     

Top spec fic books of the decade

After reading the Telegraph (UK) top 100 most influential books of the ‘noughties’ – we’ve decided spec fic (unsurprisingly) is not well represented. So we’re throwing the floor open to you – what are your top sf/f/h books of the decade? We’ll compile the list and put it up before the end of the year.

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14 Responses

  1. Kim Falconer’s Quantum Enchantment series for challenging standard notions of time and reality.

    Marianne de Pierres’ Sentients of Orion series for combining feminist politics with great space opera.

    Luke Keoskie’s ‘Dead America’ for a truly original take on zombies.

    Hm, bit of a focus on Oz SF here!

  2. Wow, I haven’t read many on the list! Does that me I’m poorly informed or simply eccentric?

    I loved seeing Margaret Atwood’s The Blind Assassin at #65. I read that twice 🙂

    Adding:

    Ursula K Le Guin, Tehanu: The Last Book of Earthsea
    R A Salvatore, The Dark Elf Trilogy
    Sheri S. Tepper, The Arbai Trilogy
    Robin Hobb, The Farseer Trilogy
    Orson Scott Card, Heartfire
    Dan Simmons, Hyperion
    Tanith Lee, The Unicorn Series

    Oh gosh…so many more. I have to get writing but will come back with others–my mind is brimming with favorites!

  3. Ah, what a great idea!

    I would add:

    Sean Williams, The Astropolis Trilogy
    Sean Williams, The Orphans of Earth Trilogy
    Stephen Baxter, Moonseed
    Stephen Baxter, The Manifold Trilogy

  4. I will also have to go away and come back, but Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan is *the* spec fic book of the decade for me.

    Also I hate to say it, but while I’m not a Twilight fan, those books certainly represent the reading habits of the decade, as do the Harry Potter books.

  5. All the Names, Jose Saramago

    Oryx and Crake, Margaret Atwood

    and not sure if it’s spec fiction, but…

    Absurdistan, Gary Shteyngart

  6. Juliet Marillier: Wildwood Dancing
    Glenda Larke: The Last Stormlord
    Karen Miller: The Innocent Mage
    Joe Abercrombie: The First Law trilogy
    Jacqueline Carey: Kushiel’s Dart
    Guy Gavriel Kay: Lord of Emperors

    • Oooh good picks! I have only read three of them but want to read the other three … I am still in two minds about the Kushiel books though … I love the building of the culture and civilisation but could never warm to the whole book (the first one, I mean).

      • Yes, not everyone likes the B&D aspect. But I see it as being part of who Phèdre is: her greatest strength (in that it makes her popular with the right people and puts her in a positon to spy on them and thus please her adored master) and her greatest weakness (because it makes her vulnerable through her emotions and her sexuality). A unique character and a well-written series!

  7. The Kingdom Beyond the Waves-
    The second book in a series, but largely a stand-alone story, this swashbuckling adventure through an insanely rich world laced with steampunk, magic, spirits & quests for ancient civilizations is just brilliant!

    John Dies At the End
    As I pitched it: “ If David Lynch & Hunter S Thompson read Lovecraft & decided to re-write Ghostbusters whilst on acid you’d get somewhere close to describing this awesome, anarchic & compellingly original new book.” True.

    World War Z
    A surprisingly moving and very well researched follow up to the cult-starting “Zombie Survival Guide”, this follows a journalist recording the testimonies of ordinary people who survived “World War Z”. It really impressed me with the way he captures the humanity of people faced with an inhuman menace, especially considering the “Survival Guide” was largely a tongue-in-cheek affair..

    Temeraire ( and the rest of the series! )
    Dragons, dragons and more dragons! But seriously, I just loved the set up of these books, from the re-imagined politics of a Napoleonic War with an aerial armada of dragons to the wonderful characterizations ( both draconic & human alike ), these books keep dragging me back in.

    The Court of the Air
    The book before Kingdom Beyond the Waves. I actually read this book second, but enjoyed it only a tiny bit less. More amazing steampunkery from one of the most singularly rich fantasy worlds I’ve ever read.

    The Chaos Crystal ( and the rest of the series)
    I was really drawn into this series, but this last book blew my mind especially. I came to it late so I had the luxury of reading all 4 books back-to-back, which only added to the experience. It was such an incredible pay off and the ending spins you completely 360 degrees.

    Witches Incorporated
    The second in the Rogue Agent series. Unlike some, I had some hiccups settling myself into the mindset of this series. Simultaneously silly,slightly barmy & yet at times truly horrific, I wasn’t sure where I stood on the first one ( Accidental Sorcerer ), but think that was the point; I, like the main character, was thrust from a point of blissful naivety into a cruel world ready to swallow him whole. By the time this second book came around I knew what to expect, and as such, enjoyed it more. The world is a great creation- a mish-mash of steampunk & wizardry with a splash of social history, but it is the amazing characters and their adventures which really propelled this for me.

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