The Annihilation Score is the sixth book in Charles Stross's Laundry Files series, which will be released this coming week. In my "Editing in Process" blog post of March 26, I detailed some of my work on The Annihilation Score as well as the previous five books in the series.
The Laundry is a supersecret British intelligence agency that protects and defends Her Majesty's Government, and the people of England, from occult incursions from beyond space-time. In the books, we follow two agents: Bob Howard and Dr. Dominique "Mo" O'Brien. Up to this point, the Laundry Files stories have all been from Bob's point of view, but The Annihilation Score turns the storytelling on its head, and we now get to experience Mo's pov; her story begins at the end of the events in The Rhesus Chart. Here's a bit of an introduction, courtesy of the author and Tor.com.
Dominique O'Brien—her friends call her Mo—lives a curious double life with her husband, Bob Howard. To the average civilian, they're boring middle-aged civil servants. But within the labyrinthian secret circles of Her Majesty's government, they're operatives working for the nation's occult security service known as the Laundry, charged with defending Britain against dark supernatural forces threatening humanity.Mo's latest assignment is assisting the police in containing an unusual outbreak: ordinary citizens suddenly imbued with extraordinary abilities of the super-powered kind. Unfortunately these people prefer playing super-pranks instead of super-heroics. The Mayor of London being levitated by a dumpy man in Trafalgar Square would normally be a source of shared amusement for Mo and Bob, but they're currently separated because something's come between them—something evil.An antique violin, an Erich [Zahn] original, made of human white bone, was designed to produce music capable of slaughtering demons. Mo is the custodian of this unholy instrument. It invades her dreams and yearns for the blood of her colleagues—and her husband. And despite Mo's proficiency as a world class violinist, it cannot be controlled...
In anticipation of the release of The Annihilation Score on July 7, Charles Stross and Tor.com have posted the first two chapters of the novel for your advanced reading pleasure. Chapter One is entitled "Prologue: the Incorrigibles" and Chapter Two is "Morning After." Read the excerpt from The Annihilation Score on Tor.com