akata.jpgThis week we’re joined by the fabulous Nnedi Okorafor, whose Akata Warrior (sequel to Akata Witch) will be published next week, and whose Binti: The Night Masquerade (concluding her award-winning Binti trilogy of novellas) is due in January. We discuss not only these books, but the ongoing excitement about the possible TV adaptation of Who Fears Death?, the forthcoming novel Remote Control, the growing awareness of African and Naijamerican SF and fantasy, her work in comics and graphic novels, her Star Wars short story, and the problems of juggling academic work with writing. Nnedi is one of the busiest writers in the field these days, and her insights, as always, are fascinating.

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This week, we are joined by distinguished critics Niall Harrison, late of Strange Horizons, and Liz Bourke, whose latest collection of reviews and essays is Sleeping With Monsters: Readings and Reactions in Science Fiction and Fantasy (Aqueduct), to discuss the debut novels of 2017 that we’re all excited or curious about. Here are some of the titles that come up in the discussion:

  • Annalee Newitz, Autonomous
  • Theodora Goss, The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter
  • Karin Tidbeck, Amatka
  • Robyn Bennis, The Guns Above
  • Lara Elena Donnelly, Amberlough
  • Ruthanna Emrys, Winter Tide
  • Cat Sparks, Lotus Blue
  • Nicky Drayden, The Prey of Gods
  • Marek Sindelka, Aberrant
  • Prayaag Akbar, Leila
  • Rivers Solomon, An Unkindness of Ghosts
  • Megan Hunter, The End We Start From
  • Mohsin Hamid, Exit West
  • Christopher Brown, Tropic of Kansas
  • Sam Miller, The Art of Starving
  • N.J. Campbell, Found Audio

There's a long list of debuts with links to reviews and ordering here.

 Here are specific recommendations and shout-outs from Liz and Niall:

Liz Bourke

  • The Guns Above, Robyn Bennis (Tor)
  • Amberlough, Lara Elena Donnelly (Tor)
  • The Prey of Gods, Nicky Drayden (HarperVoyager)
  • Winter Tide, Ruthanna Emrys (Tor.com)
  • The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, Theodora Goss (Saga)
  • Lotus Blue, Cat Sparks (Talos)
  • Strange Practice, Vivian Shaw (Orbit US)
  • Gods & Monsters: Food of the Gods, Cassandra Khaw (Rebellion/Abaddon US)
  • The Tiger’s Daughter, K Arsenault Rivera (Tor)
  • Barbary Station, R. E. Stearns (Saga)
  • Autonomous, Annalee Newitz (Tor)

Niall Harrison

Books that I have read and recommend:

  • Leila by Prayaag Akbar (Simon & Schuster India)
  • Spaceman of Bohemia, Jaroslav Kalfar (Sceptre)
  • Aberrant, Marek Šindelka (Twisted Spoon Press)
  • Amatka, Karin Tidbeck (Vintage)

Books that I am particularly keen to read that other people did not
mention (i.e. excluding Goss, Newitz, Brown):

  • An Unkindness of Ghosts, Rivers Solomon (Akashic Books)
  • American War, Omar Al Akkad (Picador)
  • An Excess Male,  Maggie Shen King (Harper Voyager)

A first fantastic novel rather than first novel, but excellent:

  • Exit West, Mohsin Hamid (Penguin)

Not a novel at all, but a notable debut:

  • Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado (Graywolf Press)

As always, our thanks to Liz and Niall. 

 

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Autonomous, Annalee NewitzAnnalee Newitz, who writes on the cultural impact of science and technology for Ars Technica and who founded and edited io9.com, delivers her debut novel Autonomous this month.

Annalee joined Gary and Jonathan in Helsinki, Finland where they were all attending WorldCon 75, to discuss Autonomous, science fiction, and the power of being able to tell stories about how science influences the world.

As always,Gary and Jonathan would like to thank Annalee for joining us, and hope you enjoy the podcast.

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35083306.jpgThis week Gary and Jonathan are joined by long-time friend of the podcast, Jeffrey Ford. Jeff is the winner of the Nebula, World Fantasy, and Shirley Jackson awards and has published eight novels, six short story collections and more than 130 short stories. His most recent book is Shirley Jackon Award winner A Natural History of Hell. Just out is new short novel, The Twilight Pariah. He joins us to discuss his writing, genre and his first new novel in ten years, Ahab's Return, or The Last Voyage.

As always we'd like to thank Jeff for making the time to join us. We'd also like to apologise, this time out, for some technical issues which affect the sound quality of this episode, especially in the first half. We think it's worth persevering with, though.  Next week: Annalee Newitz discusses Autonomous.

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After a long and mostly unplanned hiatus, we're back! We travelled to Helsinki, Finland to attend WorldCon75, and then spent time travelling and not thinking about podcasting very much at all. Still, all holidays must come to an end, and so we headed back up to the Gershwin Room one more time to discuss WorldCon, the Hugo Awards, and the merits of developing a list of books for a Fantasy 101 type course (inspired by a question from Theodora Goss).

As you can imagine, we talk, we disagree, there's rambling and Coode St is pretty much as it always is. We hope you enjoy the episode. See you next week!

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And now for something special! During the recent WorldCon, held in Helsinki, Finland, Gary and Jonathan took to the stage to talk to WorldCon guest of honor Walter Jon Williams and Campbell Award nominee Kelly Robson to discuss Walter's career and his new novel, Quillifer.

During recording we were fortunate enough to be able to give away copies of Quillifer to lucky convention attendees thanks to the generosity of Saga Press. We were a little limited by time (panels lasted exactly 45 minutes in Helsinki) but the conversation flowed and we hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Our special thanks to Walter Jon, to Kelly, and to the tech team at WorldCon 75 for making this possible. 

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When can you expect to hear The Coode Street Podcast during the second half of 2017? Well, that’s complicated. We typically record episodes of the podcast when we both are at home, or when one of us is at convention and we can use hotel wi-fi to connect and record. We also try to keep the podcast current, so we don’t have episodes stockpiled.

Given that Gary will be attending Readercon 28 (13-17 July) and we both will be attending WorldCon 75 (9-13 August) and traveling in Europe, there will be some breaks. At the moment we intend to have new episodes:

July 9
July 16 (depending on wi-fi etc)
July 23

We will then be on a hiatus from July 23 till August 3.

Normal weekly scheduling should resume and run through till November 19. We will then be on hiatus from November 20 until January 26. This long break is due to me working on my year’s best anthology and our shared commitment to working for Locus. Oh, and Christmas.

We plan to record some additional episodes during WorldCon that will be released during our hiatus.

We were away! We came back! We missed you! After an unexpected four week hiatus, and with another four week hiatus coming up, Gary and Jonathan took some time to catch up with one another, discuss what they'd both been reading lately, consider the XPrize fiction projection Seat 14C, and have a chat about the best books of the year they've read so far. A lot for a chat a little under an hour, but rambling will get them there.

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode. We will be back next week with more!

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Gary and Jonathan are back with a rambling conversation that touches on epic fantasy and its relationship to privilege, the recently announced Campbell Award ballot, Gary's theory on perspective, recent books they've read and more. They also discuss hiatuses, missed episodes and how to subscribe to the podcast.

As always, we hope you enjoy the episode!  

Subscribe

If you would like to subscribe to the podcast, use this link for iTunes.

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Any time the Coode Street Podcast connects with the United Kingdom it's a special occasion. Jonathan stays up until the dead of night (often with a whisky in hand), while Gary is driven out of bed and into the arms of coffee. This week, in the face of puzzling technical difficulties, Jonathan and Gary are joined on the podcast by noted critic Paul Kincaid and award-winning writer Ken Macleod to discuss Paul's new book on the work of Iain Banks, science fiction, writing in Scotland, and much more.

The aforementioned technical difficulties do mean there's echo on the line from Scotland, for which we apologise. We've tried to minimise it as much as possible, and think the conversation is worth persevering with, but are sorry the overall quality isn't a bit better. We hope you'll enjoy the episode and, as always, we should be back next week.

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The Strange Case of the Alchemist's DaughterThis week we talk with the multi-talented Theodora Goss, whose forthcoming novel, The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, draws not only from her own doctoral research in late Victorian Gothic fiction, but from her earlier story "The Mad Scientist’s Daughter."

By focusing on a group of women characters drawn from classic tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Robert Louis Stevenson, H.G. Wells, and Mary Shelley—and bearing the familiar names of Jekyll, Hyde, Moreau, Rappaccini, and Frankenstein—Goss gives a voice to the largely invisible figures from classic works of terror.

We also touch upon her recent story, “Come See the Living Dryad”—is it fantasy or not?-- as well as the reasons behind the appeal of monsters and the monstrous, and the delights of playing with genre.

As always, we'd like thank Dora for making time to talk to us, and we hope you enjoy the episode.

Note: We experienced some technical difficulties with this episode. There were issues with the audio (Dora drops out occasionally). We think the episode is interesting enough to release, but do apologise for the problems and hope you'll persevere.

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This week we are joined by Nebula, Clarke, Tiptree, Campbell, and World Fantasy Award winner Geoff Ryman to discuss his important new project, 100 African Writers of SF/F, which sees Ryman traversing the African continent meeting new creators of science fiction and fantasy to discuss their careers, their work and the places they find themselves working.  

We also discuss the recently announced 2017 nominations for the African Speculative Fiction Society's Nommo Award, which will be presented later this year, and a diverse range of other work.  Toward's the end of our discussion Geoff mentions Adofe Atogun's novel, Taduno's Song which we promised to list here so listeners could find it.

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As always, we'd like to thank Geoff for making the time to join us, and hope you enjoy the podcast. If you'd like to do some further reading in African SFF some resources are listed below. We'd also strongly recommend checking out the voters packet for the Nommo Awards, which will be released shortly.

Some online resources:

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ny2140.jpgThis week we're joined by the delightful and provocative Kim Stanley Robinson, to discuss his new novel New York 2140, his “comedy of coping” about dealing with catastrophic climate change in the next century, as well as how his previous novel Aurora challenged one of the cherished ideas in science fiction, the literary and artistic function of exposition in fiction, the relationship of science fiction writers to “futurists” or to MFA programs in creative writing, and his own distinguished career in the context of both science fiction and contemporary environmental literature.

As always, our thanks to Stan for making the time to tallk to us.  We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back next week!

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That sounds a bit grandiose, doesn't it? We're back rambling, and this week we discuss some of our recent reading (Jonathan finished reading his second novel of the year!!), Gary's convention, the history of the Crawford Award, voting, and Gary's new History of Science Fiction. There's rambling, diversions, and parts of the conversation that just trrail off into the ether, as you might expect.

As always, our thanks to everyone and we hope you enjoy the podast. More next week.

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kessel.jpgThis week Gary is in Orlanda, Florida for the International Conference on the Fantastic Arts. Despite being thousands of miles away, across aligator-infested waters, he took the time to sit down with long-time friends of the podcast John Kessel and James Patrick Kelly to discuss John's new novel The Moon and the Other (Saga Press, April) and Jim's new novel, Mother Go, which will be out from Audible later this year. As always happens on Coode Street, the conversation started on new books, new publishers, and publishing methods, and wandered far and wide.

As always, our sincere thanks to John and Jim for making the time to join us. We hope you enjoy the episode and will be back with more next week!

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This week we welcome a record number of guests for a lively discussion of the state of short fiction. We discuss whether or not we’re currently in a “golden age” of short fiction; the welcome growth of multicultural voices; the economic realities of the short fiction market; and how authors can build careers in such a diverse and complex publishing environment.

Our guests are:

We encourage you to support each of their fine publications. We'd also like to thank Charlie, Irene, Neil and Sheila for making the time to be part of the podcast.

 

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This week, after an unintended break because of deadlines and workload, Gary and Jonathan return to the Gershwin Room to discuss the burning question of literary fiction vs genre fiction, what exactly literary science fiction might be, recent books they've read, awards nominations, when is a writer a new writer, and so on.

Books mentioned during the podcast include:

  • The Moon and the Other, John Kessel
  • Luna: Wolfe Moon, Ian McDonald
  • New York 2140, Kim Stanley Robinson
  • Agents of Dreamland, Caitlin R. Kiernan
  • The Book of Swords, Gardner Dozois
  • The Girl Who Drank Down the Moon, Kelly Barnhill.

As always, we hope you enjoy the podcast. We hope to be back next week with #302.

 

 

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boe.jpgThis week Gary and Jonathan are joined by Hugo, Nebula and World Fantasy Award winning writer Kij Johnson to discuss her Nebula Award nominated novella The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe and her forthcoming novel The River Bank, how it's possible to re-imagine the worlds of classic fiction in bold and useful ways, recording audiobooks and how reading aloud changes what you write, and much more.

As always, we'd like to thank Kij for making the time to join us, and hope you enjoy the episode. We'd also note that this is our 300th episode. So our sincere thanks to you, our listeners, for sticking with us!

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Repost

With awards season upon us, we thought it might be worthwhile to re-release our spoiler heavy roundtable discussions for last year. The fourth 2017 awards-eligible book we discussed was Paul McAuley's Into Everywhere.

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Welcome to the fourth episode of The Coode Street Roundtable. The Roundtable is a monthly podcast from Coode Street Productions where panelists James BradleyIan Mond, and Jonathan Strahan, joined by occasional special guests, discuss a new or recently released science fiction or fantasy novel.

Paul McAuley's Into Everywhere

This month Coode Street co-host Gary Wolfe joins us to discuss Into Everwhere, the latest novel from Paul McAuley. It’s smart, engaging hard SF adventure described by its publisher as follows:

The Jackaroo, those enigmatic aliens who claim to have come to help, gave humanity access to worlds littered with ruins and scraps of technology left by long-dead client races. But although people have found new uses for alien technology, that technology may have found its own uses for people. 

The dissolute scion of a powerful merchant family, and a woman living in seclusion with only her dog and her demons for company, have become infected by a copies of a powerful chunk of alien code. Driven to discover what it wants from them, they become caught up in a conflict between a policeman allied to the Jackaroo and the laminated brain of a scientific wizard, and a mystery that spans light years and centuries. Humanity is about to discover why the Jackaroo came to help us, and how that help is shaping the end of human history.

If you're keen to avoid spoilers, we recommend reading the book before listening to the episode. If you don't already have a copy, Into Everywhere can be ordered from:

We encourage all of our listeners to leave comments here and we will do our best to respond as soon as possible.

Correction

During the podcast Jonathan incorrectly says Paul McAuley's next novel, Austral, is due in late 2016. It's actually due in late 2017. Our apologies for any confusion this may have caused.

 

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Repost

With awards season upon us, we thought it might be worthwhile to re-release our spoiler heavy roundtable discussions for last year. The first 2017 awards-eligible book we discussed was Charlie Jane Anders' All the Birds in the Sky.

 

Welcome to the third episode of The Coode Street Roundtable. The Roundtable is a monthly podcast from Coode Street Productions where panelists James BradleyIan Mond, and Jonathan Strahan, joined by occasional special guests, discuss a new or recently released science fiction or fantasy novel.

Patricia A. McKillip’s Kingfisher

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This month Tiptree Award winning writer Nike Sulway and Coode Street co-host Gary K. Wolfe join Jonathan and Ian to discuss Kingfisher, the latest novel from World Fantasy Award and Mythopoeic Award winner Patricia A. McKillip. It’s a lyrical, funny, and sometimes challenging novel about family and destiny described by its publisher as follows:

In the new fantasy from the award-winning author of the Riddle-Master Trilogy, a young man comes of age amid family secrets and revelations, and transformative magic.

Hidden away from the world by his mother, the powerful sorceress Heloise Oliver, Pierce has grown up working in her restaurant in Desolation Point. One day, unexpectedly, strangers pass through town on the way to the legendary capital city. “Look for us,” they tell Pierce, “if you come to Severluna. You might find a place for yourself in King Arden’s court.”

Lured by a future far away from the bleak northern coast, Pierce makes his choice. Heloise, bereft and furious, tells her son the truth: about his father, a knight in King Arden’s court; about an older brother he never knew existed; about his father’s destructive love for King Arden’s queen, and Heloise’s decision to raise her younger son alone.

As Pierce journeys to Severluna, his path twists and turns through other lives and mysteries: an inn where ancient rites are celebrated, though no one will speak of them; a legendary local chef whose delicacies leave diners slowly withering from hunger; his mysterious wife, who steals Pierce’s heart; a young woman whose need to escape is even greater than Pierce’s; and finally, in Severluna, King Arden's youngest son, who is urged by strange and lovely forces to sacrifice his father’s kingdom.

Things are changing in that kingdom. Oldmagic is on the rise. The immensely powerful artifact of an ancient god has come to light, and the king is gathering his knights to quest for this profound mystery, which may restore the kingdom to its former glory—or destroy it...

If you're keen to avoid spoilers, we recommend reading the book before listening to the episode. If you don't already have a copy, Kingfisher can be ordered from:

 

We encourage all of our listeners to leave comments here and we will do our best to respond as soon as possible.

Next month

The Coode Street Roundtable will return at the end of April with a discussion of Paul McAuley's Into Everywhere (his second Jackaroo novel).

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