Sunday, July 1, 2012

Reviewing the Apocalypse

I've thoroughly enjoyed reading Stross' 'Laundry' series for years now and seeing how Britain's brave secret agents fight creatures from extra-dimensional space whilst dealing with the latest round of meetings and Civil Service budget cuts. Having worked in government I find this really funny because it's true (the bureaucracy I mean, not the extra-dimensional creatures...)
—Graeme Flory, Graeme's Fantasy Book Review
ApocalypseCodexEarlier this year, on January 27, I posted a blog update entitled "Doing Charles Stross's Laundry with Style," in which I wrote about working on the author's newest Laundry Files novel, The Apocalypse Codex, for Ace Books. And, specifically, that the publisher required that I provide a Style Sheet along with the edited manuscript.

The Apocalypse Codex will be published this month and the reviews are starting to appear. All very positive, so far....

I opened this blog post above with a quote from Graeme Flory's review on his Fantasy Book Review blog. Here is another snippet from his review:

...Stross appears to be of the mind that he is done explaining all the technical stuff that underpins this setting....We've had a few books for it all to sink in and now it's time for the plot itself to have some room to breathe. It's a great move on Stross' part; his plots are normally brimming over with cool stuff anyway but the extra room allows things to ramp up to another level.
And Graeme concludes his review with:
...there are still some nasty surprises in store to trap unwary characters and make The Apocalypse Codex a book that you simply have to finish. My only regret is that I finished the book too quickly and now I have to wait for ages until the next installment.
I suspect every author would like to read a review of their work end like that!

The second review is from Elias F. Combarro (@odo), whose name you may recognize on this blog. In a blog post on May 9, I linked to Odo's review of my Alien Contact anthology on his Spanish-language blog Sense of Wonder. If Spanish isn't your thing, Odo also now posts all his reviews in English as well. As a follow-up to his review, Odo also interviewed me about a week later. I've included a link to the interview in that previous blog post as well.

But back to The Apocalypse Codex -- Odo writes in his review on Sense of Wonder:

I found The Apocalypse Codex a bit closer to urban fantasy than the previous books in the series, and some parts even reminded me of The Magician King by Lev Grossman and Kraken by China Miéville. The plot is tighter, more interesting and easier to follow than some of the other novels of The Laundry Files.
And the last paragraph of his review ends with a dire warning:
All in all, The Apocalypse Codex is possibly the best novel of The Laundry Files (and my favorite book of 2012 so far, together with Existence by David Brin) and that is a lot to say. Buy it. Read it. You don't know when CASE NIGHTMARE GREEN will happen and you'd better be prepared.
Orbit Books, the U.K. publisher of TAC, has kindly made the book's Prologue available online for your reading pleasure. So, if you're not already familiar with The Laundry and Bob Howard, here's your chance for a sneak peak at the new novel.

1 comment:

  1. After posting this blog Sunday, I had to go outside and help my wife paint the wooden retaining wall that borders our entire front yard. In my haste to complete the one so that I could do the other, I neglected to include a link to Elias F. Combarro's review of The Apocalypse Codex on his Sense of Wonder blog.

    I've now included the link in the blog post above.
    My apologies, Odo!
    - marty