Thursday, February 04, 2010

When Giants Fart…

…the whole world stinks. Which kind of sums up the atmosphere in the publishing and authorial world for the past week as publishing giant Macmillan and distribution giant square off and try to decide whose bean processing plant is the most odiferous.

Without getting into the smelly details (which have been discussed on other sites), the gist of the problem lies in the pricing of e-books. Amazon wants a fixed ceiling of $9.99 for premium (read: popular) titles; Macmillan wants flexibility in their pricing, with premium selections fetching $14.99. Sometime on January 29, Amazon pulled the buy button off all titles owned by Macmillan imprints from its website. Offerings from Amazon vendors unaffected, but Amazon itself refuses to sell any Macmillan titles.

I’m not out to further the debate between readers, writers, publishers, and distributors; that’s been done elsewhere. (See Tobias Buckell’s lengthy write up, or LE Modesitt’s for reference) My purpose in this post is to promote some former Freaks who have been run out of doors (as it were) by this fiasco.

David B. Coe (IGMS #9, Cassie’s Story) has a new paperback out. The Horsemen’s Gambit is the second book in the Blood of the Southland series, and follows protagonist Grisna the Weaver as he tries to put a stop to the plagues being perpetuated across his land. Publisher’s Weekly called The Horsemen’s Gambit “intense and appealing.” You can find The Horsemen’s Gambit at Macmillan’s website or at Barnes and Noble.

Ken Scholes (IGMS #9, The God Voices of Settler’s Rest) is the author of the acclaimed fantasy series, the Psalms of Isaac. Lamentation begins the series with the mysterious destruction of the great city Widwir. The Lord of the Nine Houses, Rudolfo, sees the destruction and sets out to investigate. The story of war in the Named Lands continues in Canticle, which was released in October ‘09. Publisher’s Weekly has said of Scholes “…[he]ingeniously fuses epic fantasy and postapocalyptic science fiction... Abounding in prophecy, myth and mystery, this grand-scale saga is a towering storytelling tour de force." You can find Scholes’ books at Barnes and Noble, Borders, or…just about anywhere but Amazon.

John Brown (IGMS #1, Loose in the Wires; IGMS #8, From the Clay of His Heart) is the author of the fantasy Servant of a Dark God. In Servant, soul-eaters steal the days from men and beasts. Surrounded by ancient lies, and pursued by the soul-eaters, young Talen must stop the rise of a dark god. Library Journal said of Servant of a Dark God: “This well-wrought tale of families in conflict against both politics and religion represents a welcome addition to large-scale fantasy.” You can find Servant of a Dark God at Borders, Barnes and Noble, or…just about at any bookseller except Amazon.

--Scott M. Roberts

Assistant Editor

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