Three more exciting guests have been added to the ever-growing roster of talent for the SFX Weekender next February.
* Mark Millar – one of the biggest names in comics at the moment, Millar is the biggest-selling British comic writer working in the US. Starting off working for 2000AD, his best known works include The Authority (which he took over after Warren Ellis), The Ultimates (a brave new take on The Avengers mythology) and Wanted (recently made into a Hollywood blockbuster starring Angelina Jolie). He was also part of the think-tank of comic writers who contributed to the Iron Man movie and is creator of the Millarworld creator-owned line.
[Note: due to work commitments Mark Millar is no longer able to attend the SFX Weekender]
* Peter F Hamilton – The King of the Space Opera, Peter F Hamilton’s are the easiest books to spot in a book shop, because one trilogy can take up an entire shelf. He’s Britain’s biggest-selling SF author, and one with a breathtaking breadth of vision and imagination. It was the Night’s Dawn trilogy which secured Hamilton’s reputation as a writer of epic space operas in tomes with a thousand-plus pages, but he began his novel writing career with another trilogy of books, featuring psychic detective Greg Mandel, a vigorous mix of politics, SF and crime fiction. In 1996 came The Reality Dysfunction, the first of the Night’s Dawn trilogy. It introduced readers to the universe in which the dead (including Al Capone and Fletcher Christian) are returning to the world of the living to claim our bodies. Which all sounds a little whimsical for a book that’s actually massively complex and features a myriad hard SF ideas, from sentient cities to biotechnology. A future in which death has been eliminated is the main theme of his two-part Commonwealth Saga (2004-5) while his current series is the Void trilogy, set in the same universe some 1,500 years on.
* Joe Abercrombie – A relatively new name in fantasy (his first novel was published in 2006) Abercrombie has quickly made a name for himself by breathing new life into an old genre with his The First Law trilogy. SFX described his first book as, “a highly readable fantasy that won’t scare off mainstream readers or newcomers.” Abercrombie himself has this to say about his work: “In part it’s a reaction to some of the things I didn’t like in a lot of the epic fantasy I read as a kid – cardboard characters, cheesy heroes and villains with no reasons and no shades of grey between – and a fixation with world-building over storytelling. Ultimately, I suppose I’ve just tried to write the kind of books that I’d like to read. An epic sweep of love and war. Some torture and some intrigue. Some mystery and some magic. A bit of sex and an awful lot of adrenalin-pumping violence. Laughter, tears, and a little bit of nausea. And, above all, some strong characters with pithy, yet hilarious, dialogue. That’s not too much to ask for your tenner, is it?” We interviewed Abercrombie about his new book on the SFX site last week.