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JUNE 2015

Hello, my lovely people!

Well, not all of you are lovely, just some of you. A couple of you I don't like the look of at all, frankly. I wouldn't be surprised if I caught you going through my bins.

Thanks to those of you who heeded the call to give That Jo Nesbø a run for his money. We closed the gap in the UK by more than half, so your efforts were not in vain. To those of you who didn't stir themselves sufficiently to help, I'm not angry, just disappointed. And a bit angry. I'm wagging a finger at you right now. Consider yourself admonished.

There's so much going on that it's hard to keep it all straight, although that may just be my advancing years. Therefore, in roughly chronological order, the next six months will bring:

Conferences y Conferencias

I will be in Bilbao on Tuesday, June 9 for that city's Feria del Libro. You'll find me at Biblioteca Bidebarrieta at 7:00 pm, in conversation with the journalist Félix Linares. Later that week I'll be in Barcelona for some press interviews. No public events are scheduled for Barcelona, but if that changes, we'll post it to Twitter and Facebook.

On July 11, I'll be among the distinguished guests at EDGE-LIT 4 in Derby, UK, sharing that honor with M.R. Carey, Joanne Harris, Paul McAuley, Claire North and Samantha Shannon. You can see me talk and answer questions at 11:30 a.m.; discuss YA science fiction and fantasy with Sarah Pinborough and Samantha Shannon at 4:15; and take your chances at the Edge-Lit Raffle, co-hosted by me and the redoubtable Ms. Pinborough, at 7:15.

The first week of August brings me south of the Equator to Buenos Aires Negra (BAN), the international noir novel festival. They're still finalizing those schedule details; we'll post them to the website as soon as we have them. Chances are good that I'll go from there to Montevideo, for their International Book Festival, but details of that are pending as well. I know: it's a tough old station, having to troop around Latin America with only fine wine and a little acclaim to sustain me, but I do it for you without complaint. I'm like that. A giver.

Come the autumn, I'll be in Nottingham October 23-25 for FantasyCon, which should coincide roughly with the UK publication date of NIGHT MUSIC. There should be a few more events for NIGHT MUSIC in the UK and Ireland, but those are still in the early planning stages.

Song of Shadows A SONG OF SHADOWS in the United States

A SONG OF SHADOWS, the 13th Charlie Parker novel, goes on sale in the United States on September 29. The cover's a bit different from the UK edition; different publishers, and this is part of a re-jacketing of all the Charlie Parker novels, in shiny new paperback editions.

Those new paperbacks will include new introductions, just as the new UK paperbacks did. The first of the new paperbacks, EVERY DEAD THING and DARK HOLLOW, go on sale this month, to be followed by THE KILLING KIND, THE WHITE ROAD and THE BLACK ANGEL in August; THE UNQUIET, THE REAPERS, and THE LOVERS in November; THE WHISPERERS and THE BURNING SOUL in March 2016; and THE WRATH OF ANGELS and THE WOLF IN WINTER in May 2016. In the current publishing environment, it's become increasingly rare to keep entire backlists in print. I'm grateful to both Hodder and Atria/Emily Bestler Books for making sure Charlie Parker remains available in all formats.

THE WOLF IN WINTER, US paperback edition

THE WOLF IN WINTER will be published in mass market paperback in the United States on July 28th, and features new lupine cover art.

The Wolf in Winter

NIGHT MUSIC: Nocturnes 2

The publication gap between UK and US editions of my books, which I know has been a frustration to American readers, will close up some this autumn with NIGHT MUSIC: Nocturnes 2, my second collection of short fiction. The anthology of 13 tales includes a second story set in the world of THE BOOK OF LOST THINGS and another in the world of "Caxton Private Lending Library and Book Depository." October 15 is the on-sale date in the UK, October 27 in the US, and as usual the book may be out a little earlier in Ireland.

Night Music Night Music

The cover art is the work of the fine artist Jim Tierney, who also created this illustration for "The Hollow King," the story set in the world of THE BOOK OF LOST THINGS:

The Hollow King

Competition Time!

Since we're on the subject of cover art, I continue to be hugely impressed with the fan art created by some of the talented folk who like my books. So, to coincide with the publication of NIGHT MUSIC, I thought we might have ourselves a little art competition.

Here's the brief: pick a novel of horror or the supernatural, and create an alternative cover for it. You might fancy having a go at Stoker's DRACULA, or Mary Shelley's FRANKENSTEIN; or, The Modern Prometheus, or THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE by Shirley Jackson. A novella like STRANGE CASE OF DR. JEKYLL & MR. HYDE may appeal, or something more modern like Stephen King's SALEM'S LOT, or Thomas Harris's THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, which is much a horror novel as a thriller. We'll even allow you to use short story collections as your inspiration, such as GHOST STORIES OF AN ANTIQUARY by M.R. James, or THE DUNWICH HORROR and OTHERS by H.P. Lovecraft. The choice is yours: all we ask is that the cover be inspired by a work already in print.

Our judges—more of whom at a later date—will select seven winners, each of whom will receive a check for €250, or the equivalent in local currency (dollars, dinars, shells, domesticated animals) and a signed copy of NIGHT MUSIC. The winning designs will also be used to create a set of art cards to go with NIGHT MUSIC.

Closing date for receipt of finished designs is July 31, and they should be sent to and marked NIGHT MUSIC ART COMPETITION.

"Razorshins" in Black Static

If you fancy a little preview of one of the NIGHT MUSIC tales, the excellent horror magazine Black Static, to be published in July, will include a story entitled "Razorshins." Razorshins is a legendary creature of Prohibition-era Maine, an immortal who might cut a tree or two down for a logger in exchange for a jug of whisky—or might cut up a few other things, if he wasn't satisfied with the offering. The illustration to accompany the story was created by the gifted SF artist Wayne Haag. More of Wayne's work can be viewed at

Black Static is a print magazine, available for sale in individual copies (ask for Issue 47) or as a subscription. Tell them I sent you.


EMPIRE in paperback

EMPIRE, the second volume of the Chronicles of the Invaders written with my better half, Jennifer Ridyard, will be published in paperback in the UK on July 16th, with US paperback publication to follow at the start of 2016. Meanwhile, work continues apace on the third (and final?) installment, which will appear early next year.


And in Other News . . .

Universal Themes, the new album by Mark Kozelek, in his incarnation as Sun Kil Moon, is on sale this week on both sides of the Atlantic. The album's final track, "This is My First Day and I'm Indian and I Work at a Gas Station," includes a reference to me, but I'd recommend that you buy it in any event: it's a stunner. If your order directly from Caldo Verde Records, you'll even get a bonus CD.

ABC to XTC, my weekly Internet radio show celebrating the music of the 1980s, continues every Tuesday at 10 pm BST on RTE 2XM, with a rebroadcast on Saturdays at 9 pm BST. If you miss a show, you can listen back to the last four weeks via the RTE Player. The most recent playlist is always posted on my website.

I could go on, but fear I have delighted you long enough. If you're in Bilbao, Derby, Buenos Aires or Montevideo, I hope to see you soon. Otherwise, you'll find me on Twitter and can keep up with the latest news on Facebook.

Thanks, as always, for your support. Stay cool, or be warm—


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