10 Books I Can’t Wait to Read – 2020

It’s a new year and after completing the latest draft of the sequel to The End of the Line (more on that anon), my brain has turned to my TBR pile. There are so many good SFF books coming out this year, I thought I would share some of my top most anticipated books for 2020.

The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie

It’s so nice to have a Joe Abercrombie book to look forward to every year again. His return with A Little Hatred was a brilliant opener to his new trilogy set years after the original First Law books and it ended on such a cliffhanger I can’t wait to be able to dive back in and see what happens next. There were plenty of new characters to get to know, to love and to hate, (and some of the older characters in the wings) and it’s going to be an utter pleasure to get my hands on another delicious looking hardback.

For those inclined to join me in my excitement, you can pre-order Joe’s book here.

Goldilocks by Laura Lam

I already have this lined up on my Kindle. I’ve been a big fan of Laura’s prose since I read False Hearts a few years back. Goldilocks has such an excellent premise, I’m looking forward to seeing what Laura does with it. Mixing spaceship thriller with The Handmaid’s Tale,  this follows a mother and daughter who are part of an all-female crew on their way to a habitable planet in the ‘Goldilocks’ zone. The Earth is dying (and simultaneously restricting the freedoms of women) and their mission could be humanity’s last hope for survival. But things start going wrong – there’s a saboteur on the ship. Big themes and an excellent thriller concept. What’s not to love? 

Pre-order here.

Stormblood by Jeremy Szal

This sounds like a guns-out SF action-thriller with a DNA-enhanced Jason Bourne at the helm. Thanks to a shady ‘super soldier’ program, our hero Vakov is addicted to adrenalin and aggression but this is going to come in handy because now his ex-army buddies are being killed off one by one and it’s up to him to stop it. This is his first novel, but Jeremy already has form having published over forty short stories which bodes well for what sounds like a complete thrill-ride.

Pre-order here.

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I pulled out Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s previous book, Gods of Jade and Shadow as one of my top picks of 2019. Well, I’m continuing that fascination with her gorgeous blend of gothic aesthetic and Mexican folklore with her aptly titled Mexican Gothic. Set in the 1950s in a haunted Mexican mansion, Noemi arrives to investigate her cousin’s claims that she’s being poisoned by her new husband. Cue dark family secrets, menacing villains, violence and madness. Sign me up. 

Pre-order here.

The Book of Koli by M.R. Carey

I was lucky enough to hear Mike read an early sneak preview of this book at SRFC last year and I can’t wait to get my hands on it. Set in the far future where humanity has fucked up the planet and efforts by scientists to fix the problem have only made things worse (or at least more interesting), we follow Koli, a boy from a small village where life is hard, enlivened by scraps of old-tech that wait to be woken by the right touch. It’s all written in the character’s vernacular ala Knife of Never Letting Go, which Carey pulls off with aplomb. Carey has long been one of my favourite authors and so I’ll definitely be snapping this up first chance I get.

Pre-order here.

Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett

The sequel to 2018’s Foundryside, this is a must for those of you who, like me, are fans of the video game series Thief. I loved the introduction to this steam-punky world, run by runes and powerful guilds who are constantly battling for supremacy and Sancia, a gifted thief, is the perfect protagonist to sneak among all their goings-on. The first had great action, believable characters and some top-notch world building, the sequel, I’m sure, will be no different.

Pre-order here.

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

It seems like forever since Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell came out (oh, wait, it was!) so it’s very exciting that Susanna Clarke has a new book coming out this Autumn. No idea what it’s about! They’re keeping that underwraps, but I will be there for it.

Pre-order here.

The City We Became by N.K. Jemisin

I am always home for some Weird Fiction. N.K. Jemisin’s Broken Earth trilogy was one of the most lauded SFF series of the last decade with multiple wins and nominations for awards (and with good reason) so it’s exciting that she’s starting this decade with something new. The author reviews are looking good (Neil Gaiman has already chimed in) and this tale about New York seems right up my alley.

Pre-order here.

The Deep by Alma Katsu

Let’s be honest, when the first line of your pitch to me is ‘Someone, or something, is haunting the Titanic’ then you’ll get the Futurama ‘Take my money’ gif in response. Set during World War One, a survivor of the Titanic, working on the sister ship Brittanica, now a hospital ship, finds that whatever strange occurrences happened on Titanic haven’t finished with her yet. I am so here for this book I’ve already requested it on Netgalley and it has some amazing author reviews from the likes of Sarah Pinborough, Josh Malerman and Paul Tremblay.

Pre-order here.

The Devil and the Dark Water by Stu Turton

The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle was an amazing debut. Love it or loathe the concept (and I loved it), what Stu Turton did with it was undeniably a work of genius and I loved curling up with this book over a Christmas holiday in Donegal. Now Stu has a new book coming, it’s set at sea, there are detectives, demons, mystery… I feel that sofa in Donegal calling me again!

Pre-order here.

So that’s it. As I’ve said, I have my own new book coming out in ebook and audio this year. It’s currently slated for June and I’ll have more to tell you about it in the coming months. In the meantime, you can check out my debut, The End of the Line which is currently only £1.99 in ebook.

Get in touch with me on Twitter and let me know what other books I should be looking out for.

Big changes

It has been three months since the publication of The End of the Line. Where did the time go?! I always knew being published was going to be a life changing event but even three months ago I wouldn’t have been able to guess how life-changing it was going to be. For example…

I’ve quit my job!

Being published has been a life goal of mine since I was a teenager and once it was achieved it comes with the question ‘what next’? It prompted me to look at my life and consider what else I wanted to change, where did I see myself in the next few years? And after some thinking I came to a decision.

I went freelance!

I’ve been working in publishing for over twelve years. I’ve worked on some HUGE campaigns for AMAZING authors like Keith Richards, Linwood Barclay, Erica James and Anthony Horowitz to name but a few. I’ve run social media and newsletter campaigns, I’ve written great copy, helped make great advertising and pushed books up to No.1 in the Sunday Times bestsellers. And I want to keep doing that. Working with books and authors and taking on those challenges has long been something that’s made me happy and it’s something I want to keep doing and the only way to do that in an effective way was to head out on the road and become a gun for hire.

I made my own fancy freelance website (www.graemewilliamsmarketing.com), I’ve had business cards printed and now I’m having lots of meetings with lots of interesting people. I’m offering them campaign and project management, consultations, copywriting, web design, the lot and hopefully they’ll all start biting soon.

But I’m not only offering my services to publishers, I’m offering my services to individual authors as well. I’ll be advising on marketing strategies, running book promotions, helping authors with agent submissions and even offering author mentorships.

So wish me luck and if you need an extra pair of hands, then get in touch!