With a new book due out at the end of the month, I ought to mention that I’ll be signing Poseidon’s Wake at Forbidden Planet, London, on the evening of April 30th.
Different people have different “rules” regarding signings. Generally the shop would like you to buy at least a new copy of the book, but I’m very happy to sign older editions if people bring them along. For the sake of the people waiting in line, I’ll gladly sign three items at a time, but if you have more – and the line is still behind you – it might be an idea to go around more than once. I’ll have to shoot off fairly promptly at 7.00, unfortunately, but while I’m in the shop I’m more than happy to chat, so don’t hesitate to come along and ask me stuff.
There hasn’t been much advance press on Poseidon’s Wake, so I’ll keep my power dry for now, but here is the book description as it should have appeared on the inside cover flap:
Two hundred years after the fall of Mechanism, human society has achieved a kind of stability. There are colonies beneath the oceans, throughout the solar system, and beyond: on the worlds of extrasolar systems. Vast hemirelativistic ships connect these colonies, travelling at half the speed of light. Or rather they would, if the ominous presence of the alien Watchkeepers had not led to an enforced moratorium on interstellar travel.
But when a seemingly impossible radio signal reaches the colony Crucible, everything changes:Â
Itâs origin is unpopulated, unexplored space. No one could be there â at least, not if they travelled using human technology â so who could have sent it? How did they get there? And what use do they have for the disgraced scientist Ndege Akinya?
Finding the answers will require one of the greatest expeditions humankind has ever launched, a journey further than ever attempted before, conducted under the implacable scrutiny of the Watchkeepers.
But as a mission is prepared on Crucible, it turns out they werenât the only ones to see the message â or its potential . . .Â
âLet me also note that Slow Bullets posits a far-future situation akin to the one that we confront on planet Earth today, but leavens his fictional crisis with a hard-won grasp of human psychology and a down-to-the-ground optimism that bestows on its readers reasons for supposing our âdammed human raceâ nimble enough to overcome our demanding real-world crisis du jour. A fine example of the true science fictionistâs art . . . âwith a bullet,â as the editors at Billboard Magazine Â used to say.â
âMichael Bishop, author ofÂ A Funeral for the Eyes of Fire, And Strange atÂ Ecbatan Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â theÂ Trees,Â andÂ Transfigurations
âAlastair Reynolds is the worldâs best writer of space opera. If you have any doubts, then read Slow Bullets.â
âAllen Steele, author of Coyote and Spindrift
âThe writing is tight, the characters are well developed, and the story itself moves along at a cracking pace.â
âScience Fiction & Fantasy Book Corner
Â âSlow BulletsÂ is classic science fiction, a space opera, a puzzle story, a character study, visionary science fiction, and a prayer for peace. Â I see no reason why you should not love it.â
âMichael Swanwick, author of Tales of Old Earth and Dancing with Bears
âAlastair Reynolds weaves a tapestry of dark, dystopian societies in a tense, colorful narrative.â
âNew York Journal of Books