What We’re Looking Forward To In October

What We’re Looking Forward To is, as the name indicates, a monthly feature where we talk about what books we’re most excited to check in the coming month. 

From João:

There has always been in me a potent interest for everything war related; I blame it on growing up imagining armies of orcs and men battling on the fields of Pelennor. The synopsis of the latest Greg Bear book, War Dogslooks immensely interesting, and it reminds me of Haldeman’s The Forever War,   and, more recently, of Will McIntosh’s Defenders.

War DogsThey made their presence on Earth known thirteen years ago.
Providing technology and scientific insights far beyond what mankind was capable of. They became indispensable advisors and promised even more gifts that we just couldn’t pass up. We called them Gurus.
It took them a while to drop the other shoe. You can see why, looking back.
It was a very big shoe, completely slathered in crap.
They had been hounded by mortal enemies from sun to sun, planet to planet, and were now stretched thin — and they needed our help.
And so our first bill came due. Skyrines like me were volunteered to pay the price. As always.
These enemies were already inside our solar system and were moving to establish a beachhead, but not on Earth.
On Mars
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I have never read any genre fiction from China, and since Cixin Liu‘s The Three-Body Problem appears to be one of the great works to have come out of that scene, now published in English through Tor, and translated by the amazing Ken Liu, I am l0oking forward to give this one a shot.

The Three-Body ProblemThree-Body Problem is the first chance for English-speaking readers to experience this multiple award winning phenomenon from China’s most beloved science fiction author, Liu Cixin.

Set against the backdrop of China’s Cultural Revolution, a secret military project sends signals into space to establish contact with aliens. An alien civilization on the brink of destruction captures the signal and plans to invade Earth. Meanwhile, on Earth, different camps start forming, planning to either welcome the superior beings and help them take over a world seen as corrupt, or to fight against the invasion. The result is a science fiction masterpiece of enormous scope and vision.

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This one is bound to arrive in my doorstep at any moment. I am a bit apprehensive because I am very sensitive to non-standard narration techniques and might give up on the book because of it, but Lavie Tidhar‘s The Violent Century has an incredible review buzz around it and the premise is right up my alley. Very excited for this one.

The Violent CenturyJohn le Carré meets Alan Moore’s The Watchmen in this stunning novel by one of science fiction’s most original voices.

For seventy years they guarded the British Empire. Oblivion and Fogg, inseparable friends, bound together by a shared fate. Until one night in Berlin, in the aftermath of the Second World War, and a secret that tore them apart.

But there must always be an account… and the past has a habit of catching up to the present.

Now, recalled to the Retirement Bureau from which no one can retire, Fogg and Oblivion must face up to a past of terrible war and unacknowledged heroism – a life of dusty corridors and secret rooms, of furtive meetings and blood-stained fields – to answer one last, impossible question: What makes a hero?

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From Rita:

Although I haven’t yet read The Mark of Athena and The House of Hades, I’m really looking forward to read The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan. It’s the conclusion to a great story, and I just cannot let Percy go… (but I’ll have to wait until the edition of the House of Hades with the cover I love is released so that I’m able to finish the series).


The Blood of Olympus
Though the Greek and Roman crewmembers of the Argo II have made progress in their many quests, they still seem no closer to defeating the earth mother, Gaea. Her giants have risen—all of them—and they’re stronger than ever. They must be stopped before the Feast of Spes, when Gaea plans to have two demigods sacrificed in Athens. She needs their blood—the blood of Olympus—in order to wake.
The demigods are having more frequent visions of a terrible battle at Camp Half-Blood. The Roman legion from Camp Jupiter, led by Octavian, is almost within striking distance. Though it is tempting to take the Athena Parthenos to Athens to use as a secret weapon, the friends know that the huge statue belongs back on Long Island, where it “might” be able to stop a war between the two camps.
The Athena Parthenos will go west; the Argo II will go east. The gods, still suffering from multiple personality disorder, are useless. How can a handful of young demigods hope to persevere against Gaea’s army of powerful giants? As dangerous as it is to head to Athens, they have no other option. They have sacrificed too much already. And if Gaea wakes, it is game over.

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After reading The Iron Trial by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare, I decided that I just had to read more things from those two authors. After some research, I found The Couldest Girl in Coldtown and it seemed the perfect thriller to read over the winter.

The Coldest Girl in ColdtownTana lives in a world where walled cities called Coldtowns exist. In them, quarantined monsters and humans mingle in a decadently bloody mix of predator and prey. The only problem is, once you pass through Coldtown’s gates, you can never leave.

One morning, after a perfectly ordinary party, Tana wakes up surrounded by corpses. The only other survivors of this massacre are her exasperatingly endearing ex-boyfriend, infected and on the edge, and a mysterious boy burdened with a terrible secret. Shaken and determined, Tana enters a race against the clock to save the three of them the only way she knows how: by going straight to the wicked, opulent heart of Coldtown itself.

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown is a wholly original story of rage and revenge, of guilt and horror, and of love and loathing from bestselling and acclaimed author Holly Black.

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And George R. R. Martin does it again. The World of Ice and Fire promises to deliver a book full of “new history”, amazing illustrations, and, let’s hope, some hints of plot development. The pre-order is made, and now all we need is to wait.

The World of Ice and FireIf the past is prologue, then George R. R. Martin’s masterwork—the most inventive and entertaining fantasy saga of our time
—warrants one hell of an introduction. At long last, it has arrived with The World of Ice and Fire.

This lavishly illustrated volume is a comprehensive history of the Seven Kingdoms, providing vividly constructed accounts of the epic battles, bitter rivalries, and daring rebellions that lead to the events of A Song of Ice and Fire and HBO’s Game of Thrones. In a collaboration that’s been years in the making, Martin has teamed with Elio M. García, Jr., and Linda Antonsson, the founders of the renowned fan site Westeros.org—perhaps the only people who know this world almost as well as its visionary creator.

Collected here is all the accumulated knowledge, scholarly speculation, and inherited folk tales of maesters and septons, maegi and singers. It is a chronicle which stretches from the Dawn Age to the Age of Heroes; from the Coming of the First Men to the arrival of Aegon the Conqueror; from Aegon’s establishment of the Iron Throne to Robert’s Rebellion and the fall of the Mad King, Aerys II Targaryen, which has set into motion the “present-day” struggles of the Starks, Lannisters, Baratheons, and Targaryens. The definitive companion piece to George R. R. Martin’s dazzlingly conceived universe, The World of Ice and Fire is indeed proof that the pen is mightier than a storm of swords

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