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Mark Chadbourn's The Scar-Crow Men sees Elizabethan spy Will Swyfte in a dark place. It's 1593, and the Black Plague has come to London. Spymaster Sit Francis Walsingham is dead, and English spies are being murdered all over the city. England's greatest enemy, the Unseelie Court, prepares to realize a scheme years in the making. With enemies on all sides, Swyfte may find that all his skills are no match for the forces arrayed against him.
Check out Chadbourn's posts at Pyr-o-mania on writing fantasy based in history- on writing in a specific era, and writing about historical figures.
Jasper Kent revisits Russia in Thirteen Years Later. In 1825, Europe- and Russia- are at peace, as is Colonel Aleksei Ivanovich Danilov. Not only have the French been defeated, but so have the monstrous creatures that once ravaged Moscow. Aleksei's duties are still to protect the Tsar, but against merely human threats. But now the one who was betrayed by the Romanovs has returned to exact revenge for what has been denied him. And for Aleksei, knowing this chills his very soul. For it seems the vile pestilence that once threatened all he believed in and all he held dear has returned, thirteen years later...
At Suvudu.com, Jasper Kent relates five historical facts you might not know about Russia to Thirteen Years Later.
The Raven return in James Barclay's Demonstorm, the third volume in the Legends of the Raven. The dragons have gone home, and the elves are safe, but fate isn't finished with The Raven. An old enemy sees an opportunity for revenge in the continuing war between the colleges. When the veil between the dimensions tears, demons catch the scent of countless souls in Balaia. Can even The Raven prevail against this predatory evil?
"Military fantasy, well-developed characters, and masterful storytelling make this an outstanding choice for fans of Glen Cook's "Black Company" novels."
-Library Journal starred review
In the world of Paul McAuley's Cowboy Angels, the first Turing gate was opened in 1963. Three years later, the first man steps into an alternate reality, and an empire is born. The version of America calling itself the real sees its manifest destiny to impose its ideology across all realities. Adam Stone, a Cowboy Angel- one of the CIA field agents who've done covert work in other realities- comes out of retirement when an old friend goes on a killing spree across alternate realities. His mission uncovers a startling secret about Turing gates, and leads him to an audacious conspiracy to change the history of every America in the multiverse- including our own.
You can read the first three chapters of Cowboy Angels online, kindly hosted by io9.com.
"If Christopher Nolan (director of Inception) wrote SF, it would be much like what McAuley gave us in Cowboy Angels. It's fast, gritty, terrifying and wonderful...Definitely recommended."
-Shiny Book Review
"...this gripping tale, which calls to mind both the Stargate TV series and any number of spy thrillers... provides nonstop action, a believably damaged hero, and a complex set of mysteries that will keep the reader breathlessly turning pages."