Keep an eye out for this one. . .


Blake Charlton's Spellwright won't be released till February 2010, but I have it on good authority that this book will be in contention for best first fantasy novel ever. Understandably, I can't wait to get my hands on an Advance Reading Copy to find out if that's the case or not! For more info about this title: Canada, USA, Europe.

Spellwright has already garnered rave reviews from authors such as Robin Hobb, Tad Williams, Daniel Abraham, and more. Could this be the novel which will become the fantasy debut of 2010? We'll have to wait and see. . .

Here's the blurb:

Imagine a world in which the written word can leave a page to physically lift a man into the air, sharpen his pitchfork, or stop his beating heart.

Such a world is home to Nicodemus Weal, a young wizard with tremendous talent for forging the magical runes which can create spells. Indeed, throughout his adolescence, Nicodemus was thought to be the Halcyon, a powerful magic-user prophesized to save the land from a coming apocalypse known only as the Disjunction.

There was only one problem: runes must be placed in an exact order to create a spell. Any deviation results in a "misspell"--a flawed spell that behaves in an erratic, sometimes lethal, manner. It so happens that Nicodemus is a "cacographer," one unable to correctly reproduce even simple texts.

Now twenty-three, Nicodemus lives in the devastating aftermath of having failed to live up to prophecy. His magical talent is restricted to the kitchen, where he cleans pots and scrubs walls with childish language. Life slips by one aggravating day at a time until a visiting author identifies an ancient curse infesting the young wizard's mind. The malicious text has, in fact, stolen his ability to spell. Suddenly, the two wizards closest to Nicodemus are murdered violently and he is forced to flee his home in a desperate quest to recover the stolen part of his mind.

SPELLWRIGHT is the first volume of Nicodemus' journey across the kingdoms of Faragard, his encounters with monsters and gods who distort language to their own ends, and his internal struggle to accept himself as whole without his ability to spell.

For more information on the author and his work, visit Charlton's website. Click on the Samples link to read extracts covering the prologue and the first four chapters.

The cover art was done by Todd Lockwood. To peruse more of the artist's work, head on out to http://www.toddlockwood.com/.

26 commentaires:

isis said...

but I have it on good authority that this book will be in contention for best first fantasy novel ever.

What, even with that cover? ;)

The Mad Hatter said...

It sounds promising.

RobB said...

That cover is terrific!

Where'd you find out about this one, Pat?

Martin said...

Interesting.

Colin said...

I trust you, but I'm not to crazy about that blurb. It doesn't sound to be much of my style. Still a good book is a good book.

thelsdj said...

Best first Fantasy novel ever? That has already gone to Patrick Rothfuss for The Name of the Wind

Anonymous said...

This doesn't sound good at all. What is with all those puns(misspell, spellwright,)? Come on. Sounds dumb.

Jeff said...

The blurb sounds like a standard impoverished, beaten-down, menial boy goes on quest to discover great power/true knowledge of self story, complete with (as noted) dubious puns. It could be fun, but I'm not holding my breath on this one.

PeterWilliam said...

Interest piqued. With so many political, current events surrounded by politicians using terms and definitions to cast opponents in the darkest possible light, it might prove an interesting commentary on the partisan/biased handling of language as a weapon/tactic.

Memory said...

Sounds to me like it's got a real Robin Hobb vibe, which is right up my alley. I'm looking forward to this.

Luis said...

"Nicodemus was thought to be the Halcyon, a powerful magic-user prophesized to save the land from a coming apocalypse known only as the Disjunction."

How many hundreds of times have we seen THAT plot before? The farm boy / kitchen worker that is secretly a great wizard/warrior? The only thing I see going for it is a clever variation on the mechanics of magic.

Lowkey said...

It seems like every year there is a new "best Fantasy Novel Ever" and I'm getting sick of it. Examples: Name of the Wind (which was fantastic but not the "Best Fantasy Novel Ever"), The Lies of Locke Lamora (which was also good), Lamentation (which I want to read). All I'm saying is I'm sick of this Hype machine lets quit with the "Best Fantasy Novel Ever" title and just say this book may be good.

Anonymous said...

The prologue was quite nice...

Joe Sherry said...

The problem with that hype is that it makes me less inclined to want to read the book, not more. Not when the book isn't in readers hands.

Anonymous said...

The doubt and the Patrick Rothfuss bit have already been shed, so I'll use this comment to say that I'm curious. It seems to be a very philosophical work (and the chosen one with an impediment is an interesting twist) so it might be right on par with Patrick Rothfuss. Have to read these samples.

The Ring said...

If Robin Hobbs likes it, then I'm interested but the blurb doesn't inspire confidence.

Anonymous said...

On your word - I just pre-ordered mine!

Jamie said...

Pssibly the most cliche-ridden blurb ever, but if it's well written and the plot is good, it won't matter too much - it worked pretty well for the Painted Man.

simon_hyde said...

It's always good to get a 'heads up' so thanks Pat. I know what people mean with the gripes about the hype but at the end of the day it's Pat's relationship with the publishers that make his blog one of the more informative (and entertaining) so we have to take the rough with the smooth...

With regards to the Painted Man, I found it hugely dissapointing but each to there own!

Anonymous said...

Have to say the blurb doesn't excite me at all - neither the plot or the actual way it's written does anything for me.

Cecrow said...

I like the idea of a dyslexia curse; a creative way to put a wizard aside without the trouble of murdering him. I'll wait for the reader reviews, though.

Patrick said...

I just want to reiterate the fact that I haven't read and book yet, and thus I can't vouch for its quality. All I can say is that this one comes with the highest possible recommendation from a very trusted source.

For all I know it could be another David Bilsborough. Only time will tell. . .

Still, this one gets to the top of the pile as soon as I receive the ARC.:-)

Anonymous said...

Wow, sounds great to me! A whole new dimension of magic!

Anonymous said...

Well I tried to read it and failed to finish it. It is pretty standard stuff with your usual characters not that lively. I don't understand all the commotion !

The Guru of EVERYTHING said...

Meh, it will be total crap. "Best debut fantasy" is a title given by fans, not proclaimed pre-publication by marketing people.

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