June Newsletter: Mur Lafferty, Walter Mosley, Merrie Haskell, Leigh Bardugo, Khaled Hosseini, Free RPG Day, George Takei, ConTemporal, and more

Vol 3. No 6. May 31, 2013:

Whew. May was quite a busy month, with: visits from (among others) Mary Robinette Kowal (recap here and Warren Schultz’s video here) and John Scalzi (Calvin Powers posted a video of Scalzi’s reading for those who missed it); Daniel Wallace launched his new book The Kings and Queens of Roam with multiple local events and an interview on WUNC’s The State of Things; comics events with Kelly Sue DeConnick and Lucy Knisley; and the invasion of several hundred cosplayers into downtown Raleigh in the form of Animazement (some photos here). Local comics writer Jeremy Whitley was on WUNC’s The State of Things as well, to talk about the lack of heroic female characters in comics.

Meanwhile, another bumper crop of new books from local authors; whether you are interested in high fantasy, horror/sf/thrillers, a quirky/smart/paranoid take on urban fantasy, or comics collections, you’re pretty much covered:

  • Ending (The Laurian Pentology, Book 4) by Danny Birt (Dark Quest Books, May 24) — “Alaris has enacted his continent-spanning plans, and he races against time to get to the ancient tower of mages, Pinnacle, to enact yet more.  But Pinnacle is not his ultimate goal: even mage-kind is but a tool to Alaris.  How much, then, do mere individuals matter to him?”
  • Vaporware by Richard Dansky (JournalStone, May 24) — “Video game projects get shut down all the time, but when the one Ryan Colter and his team have poured their hearts into gets cut, something different happens: the game refuses to go away. Now Blue Lightning is alive, and it wants something from Ryan – something only he can give it. And everybody knows how addictive video games can be…”
  • The Shambling Guide to New York City by Mur Lafferty (Orbit, May 28) — “Because of the disaster that was her last job, Zoe is searching for a fresh start as a travel book editor in the tourist-centric New York City. After stumbling across a seemingly perfect position though, Zoe is blocked at every turn because of the one thing she can’t take off her resume — human. Not to be put off by anything — especially not her blood drinking boss or death goddess coworker — Zoe delves deep into the monster world. But her job turns deadly when the careful balance between human and monsters starts to crumble — with Zoe right in the middle.”
  • And Bull Spec art director Gabriel Dunston has a new e-book collection of “selected comics from the first full year of journal comics from my graduation from ECU to the birth of my daughter” — Funny Thing Happened Today (Book 1)

Some other quick news bits:

  • Tickets are now on sale for the Raleigh Browncoats’ “Can’t Stop the Serenity” charity screening of Serenity on July 28th
  • From June 12-19, Hillsborough author James Maxey’s superhero novel Nobody Gets the Girl will be promotionally priced at 99 cents on Amazon Kindle, so if you haven’t picked up a copy…
  • Local writer (and actor, and…) Alex Wilson is joining the Friday June 28th Jamil Nasir event at Flyleaf, to launch the latest volume of Writers of the Future, which includes his prize-winning story
  • Bull Spec poetry editor Dan Campbell has a great non-fiction piece in Interfictions Online, talking Tolkien and Old Norse, on maps and weaving and myths
  • Jay Posey writes that he is “excited to be donating portion of proceeds from my novel THREE to Hope For The Warriors®! Deets here.”
  • Announcement: author Robert V.S. Redick joins the lineup for the Bull Spec August 3 summer speculative fiction event at Quail Ridge Books

In other Bull Spec news, both The Exploding Spaceship and The Hardest Part web feature series were very active this month, and! the PDF edition of just-released issue #8+9 is also finally out at both Weightless Books ($) and Wizard’s Tower Books (£) — I’m very sorry for not yet getting the PDF issue emailed out to Kickstarter backers, and hope to get to that this weekend. Meanwhile the first review has come in, from Tangent Online.

There are several NEW events below, and the weekend gets off to quite a start on Saturday (June 1) with both a multi-author event in the afternoon (John Claude Bemis, Cate Tiernan) and Mur Lafferty’s book launch party at Chapel Hill Comics in the evening. The month ends with quite a bang as well with the second year of ConTemporal, this year at the North Raleigh Hilton; for those closer to the western regions of the Triangle, there are events at Flyleaf Books and Davenport & Winkleperry to close out the month as well. See you out and about!

-Sam

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JUNE 2013

May 31 – June 2 (Friday to Sunday) — ConCarolinas in Charlotte, with writer guest of honor Timothy Zahn. More info: http://www.concarolinas.org/

NEW: 1 (Saturday) 2 pm — Piedmont Laureate John Claude Bemis hosts a four-author presentation at the Orange County Library in downtown Hillsborough: “A discussion with four of the Triangle’s most exciting children’s book authors: Frances O’Roark Dowell, Cate Tiernan, Clay Carmichael, and Kelly Starling Lyons.  We’ll be talking about our favorite books, how we became authors, stories from our childhoods, and generally sharing lots of inspiration to writers of all stripes.  Come and meet these wonderful local authors who write everything from young adult paranormal romance, to middle-grade mysteries, realistic fiction, and picture books. For more information visit Celebrating Children’s Literature with Local Authors.”

1 (Saturday) 7 to 9 pm — Chapel Hill Comics hosts a launch party for Durham author Mur Lafferty’s The Shambling Guide to New York City, forthcoming in late May from Orbit. More info: http://www.chapelhillcomics.com/content/?p=3107

2 (Sunday) 3:00 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts SUSANNA KEARSLEY, The Firebird. “With a simple touch, she can see an object’s past.  All who have wanted it.  All who have owned it.  All who have stolen it.“

5 (Wednesday) 7:30 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts mystery author WALTER MOSLEY – With Little Green. The book is the latest in Mosley’s Easy Rawlins series; Mosley is also an sf author, most recently with a series of “Crosstown to Oblivion” paired short novels from Tor.

7 (Friday) 8 pm — The NC Symphony hosts “Video Games Live” presenting symphonic performances of video game themes. More info: http://www.ncsymphony.org/events/index.cfm?view=details&viewref=calendar&detailid=1063&eid=1850

8 (Saturday) 2 to 4 pm — Chapel Hill Comics hosts Tom Batiuk on Saturday, June 8, from 2pm until 4pm, when he will sign The Complete Funky Winkerbean books one and two. More info: http://www.chapelhillcomics.com/content/?p=3120

NEW: 12 (Wednesday) 7 pm — Durham’s The Regulator Bookshop hosts Claude A. Piantadosi for his new non-fiction book on the past, present, and future of the U.S. space program, Mankind Beyond Earth: The History, Science, and Future of Human Space Exploration. More info: http://www.regulatorbookshop.com/event/claude-piantadosi

NEW: 14 (Friday) 7 pm — Durham’s The Regulator Bookshop hosts Merrie Haskell for new new middle-grade fantasy/adventure Handbook for Dragon Slayers, which “mixes magic, mythical creatures, thrilling action, and a wonderful cast of characters.” More info: http://www.regulatorbookshop.com/event/merrie-haskell

14 (Friday) 7:00 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts “Fierce Reads Tour” as “Five fantasy and sci-fi authors join us with their new books! ANNA BANKS, Of Poseidon and Of Triton; LEIGH BARDUGO, Shadow & Bone and Siege & Storm; JESSICA BRODY, Unremembered; EMMY LAYBOURNE, Monument 14 and Monument 14:Sky on Fire; and GENNIFER ALBIN,Crewel.” For ages 12+.

15 (Saturday) — Quail Ridge Books hosts fiction author KHALED HOSSEINI – With And The Mountains Echoed.

15 (Saturday) — Free RPG Day at gaming stores worldwide. “Established in 2007, Free RPG Day works with participating hobby game retailers and RPG publishers to bring new and exclusive RPG quickstart rules and adventure modules into the hands of gamers.” More info: http://www.freerpgday.com/

27 (Thursday) — A sf-themed even from the NC Symphony: ‘Join George Takei, “Mr. Sulu” of Star Trek fame, as he guides you through the galaxy accompanied by music from E.T., Star Wars, Close Encounters, and,of course, Star Trek.’ Go to http://ncsymphony.org/events/index.cfm?view=details&viewref=calendar&detailid=1019&eid=1752&sdate=6%2F1%2F2013 for tickets.

27-30 (Thursday to Sunday) — ConTemporal 2013 at the North Raleigh Hilton, beginning with the Thursday evening guest of honor dinner and continuing all weekend, as this Steampunk-themed convention is back for a second year. Guest of honor Ursula Vernon, along with Lee Martindale, Tom Smith, toastmaster Sal Sanfratello, and more. More info: http://contemporal.org/

NEW: 28 (Friday) 7 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts Jamil Nasir for his new sf novel Tunnel Out of Death (Tor Books), along with local writer Alex Wilson for the publication of the latest anthology from Writers of the Future, which includes Wilson’s prize-winning story.

NEW: 29 (Saturday) 6 pm to 9 pm — Chapel Hill Comics will host Lisa Hanawalt on Saturday, June 29, from 6pm until 9pm, when she will sign her new book, My Dirty Dumb Eyes! More info: http://www.chapelhillcomics.com/content/?p=3158

NEW: 29 (Saturday) Late to Later — Pittsboro’s Davenport & Winkleperry hosts THE CLOCKWORK BALL: A Steampunk Party.

JULY 2013

10 (Wednesday) 7 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts Alex Bledsoe for Wisp of a Thing, book two after The Hum and the Shiver in his new contemporary fantasy series.

11 (Thursday) 7:30 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts STEPHEN KIERNAN for The Curiosity. “The Time Traveler’s Wife meets Michael Crichton in a powerful debut novel about a man frozen in ice for more than a century, who reawakens in the present day.”

28 (Sunday) — The annual NC Browncoats “Can’t Stop the Serenity” charity screening of Serenity at the Raleighwood Cinema Grill. Note that this is a ticketed event and tends to sell out completely in advance. More info: http://www.ncbrowncoats.com/2013/01/blog-post.html

AUGUST 2013

3 (Saturday) 7 to 9 pm — Quail Ridge Books hosts the annual Bull Spec summer speculative fiction event. This year it is an absolutely fantastic lineup with Karen Lord, Nathan Ballingrud, Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, Robert V.S. Redick, and Will Hindmarch all coming up from the Shared Worlds Teen Writing Camp at Wofford College, being joined locally by Durham author Mur Lafferty. We had a blast hosting Ann and Jeff back in 2011 and it’s sure to be another great evening. More info: http://bullspec.com/2013/03/29/announcement-the-third-annual-bull-spec-summer-speculative-fiction-event/

NEW: 24 (Saturday) 2 pm to 3 pm — Flyleaf Books hosts Marisha Pessl reads and signs her new novel Night Film. “An inventive–if brooding, strange and creepy–adventure in literary terror. Think Edgar Allan Poe and Stephen King meet Guillermo del Toro as channeled by Klaus Kinski.” (Kirkus) More info: http://www.flyleafbooks.com/event/marisha-pessl-reads-and-signs-her-new-novel-night-film

27 (Tuesday) 7 pm — The Regulator Bookshop hosts NCSU professor Wilton Barnhardt for his forthcoming historical fiction satire novel Lookaway, Lookaway (St. Martin’s and Macmillan Audio, August 20).

SEPTEMBER 2013

27 (Friday) Flyleaf Books hosts Robin Sloan for the paperback edition of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore. 7 pm.

OCTOBER 2013

4-6 (Friday to Sunday) — Second Escapist Expo at the Durham Convention Center. More info: http://www.escapistexpo.com/

NEW-NEW: 8 (Tuesday) 8 pm — Durham’s Carolina Theatre welcomes Chris Hardwick (The Nerdist, AMC’s Talking Dead) for a standup comedy show. Tickets in person at the Carolina Theatre or via Ticketmaster.

NOVEMBER 2013

9-10 (Saturday and Sunday) — NC Comicon will be returning to the Durham Convention Center. “Twice the space, four times the fun. It’s exponential.”

JANUARY 2014

10-12 (Friday to Sunday) — illogiCon iii: The Search for Schrödington’s Gold at the Embassy Suites Raleigh-Durham/Research Triangle, with author guests of honor Mary Robinette Kowal and Lawrence M. Shoen. More info: http://www.illogicon.com/

APRIL 2014

5-6 (Saturday and Sunday) — 2014 North Carolina Literary Festival hosted by the NCSU Libraries at NC State University; the primary venue for the Festival will be the James B. Hunt Jr. Library on Centennial Campus. “This free public event is presented on a rotating basis by the Duke University Libraries, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Libraries, the NCSU Libraries, and North Carolina Central University. The Festival is designed to attract people of all ages, from our surrounding communities and across the state. The program will be varied and will include author readings and discussions, book signings, activities, bookstore sales and more.”

JUNE 2014

(May 30) to June 1 (Friday to Sunday) — ConCarolinas in Charlotte, with guest of honor George R.R. Martin.

JULY 2014

NEW: 11-13 (Friday to Sunday) — ConGregate in downtown Winston-Salem. More info: http://www.con-gregate.com/

– END –


One Comment on “June Newsletter: Mur Lafferty, Walter Mosley, Merrie Haskell, Leigh Bardugo, Khaled Hosseini, Free RPG Day, George Takei, ConTemporal, and more”


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