Linky goodness!

The award-winning Starship Sofa podcast have worked their podcasty magic on another story from One Small Step – this time, Suzanne J Willis’ story “Number 73 Glad Avenue” has hit the airwaves – take a listen!

Marianne de Pierres’ novel Peacemaker is going to be made into an interactive game! The origins of the Peacemaker series are in the short story “Virgin Jackson”, which was reprinted in FableCroft’s Australis Imaginarium anthology in 2010!

Pozible have posted an interview with us about our Cranky Ladies crowdfunding campaign. Check it out here.

Guardian coverJo Anderton’s forthcoming book Guardian has been sent to the printer! Official launch will take place at Continuum in Melbourne during the June long weekend. It’s not too late to pre-order your copy (ebook or print) for special introductory price and get bonus exclusive Veiled Worlds content!

The voting for NAFF (National Australian Fan Fund) closes TODAY, and I’m running, with my fan hat on! The fund supports an Australian fan to attend the National Science Fiction and Fantasy convention in Australia (this year that’s Continuum), and I’m really looking forward to being able to attend in that capacity, should I be successful! I can hardly ever get to panels when I go to cons, and being there as NAFF delegate would mean I can do the full convention experience — I’ve also got lots of fun ideas for fundraising for NAFF (part of the delegate’s responsibility), which I’m looking forward to. You can find more information here, and once you’ve read about each candidate, if you’ve got $5 to spare for a vote, it would be appreciated (you don’t have to vote for me — the other candidate is also very worthy, or you can vote to hold over funds for the following year).

Speaking of Natcon, if you are a member of Continuum, or were a member of Conflux last year, you have Ditmar Awards voting rights! It’s a great ballot, so please exercise your democratic rights 🙂 We have posted some free fiction and discounts on our nominated books and stories, to help you make an informed choice 🙂

Book Review: Peacemaker by Marianne de Pierres

I don’t usually review books here on the FableCroft site, but like to periodically do so when it’s a book by one of the authors we have published in the past.

PeacemakerI first encountered Peacemaker protagonist Virgin Jackson in de Pierres’ story “Gin Jackson: Neophyte Ranger” (first published in the Agog! Smashing Stories anthology in 2004, and I liked it so much I reprinted in FableCroft’s Australis Imaginarium in 2010). I was delighted to read Peacemaker in graphic version in 2011, and was a bit sad when that format was unable to continue, so it was with huge anticipation I started on the novel version! And I have not been disappointed.

Virgin Jackson is a senior ranger in a themed conservation park; odd things have started to happen to her, and not just finding herself saddled with a US Marshall who is himself just a little strange. When she first finds a dead body where it’s almost impossible for anyone to be, she is essentially accused of the murder, and then is attacked in her home. Not one to stand idly by and let things happen, Virgin starts to investigate for herself, with the help of friends in useful places, and the odd Marshall Sixkiller. What she finds is not at all what she expects…

There are several changes that have occurred from the original short story to the novel-length edition. Focus is by necessity shifted for the longer form, and while the book is still (in my eyes) very Australian, I can also see where some elements have been altered to give the story a more international tone, and that both works very well on a plot level as well as being a sensible move in terms of audience.

In another incarnation, de Pierres writes crime fiction, and her experience in both a science fictional setting and a mystery one offer a deftness of touch here. Peacemaker rollicks along at a cracking pace, and I found myself holding my breath in anticipation at times, which is always a good sign! The character of Virgin is vivid and wonderfully acerbic, and I found both she and the supporting cast so well realised they really bounced off the page. With that combination, I got to the end of the book and flipped the last page in disappointment, because while the story ended well (albeit definitely set up for the next volume), I simply didn’t want it to stop. Bring on the next instalment!

Thank you to the publisher for my review copy of the book. It is available in ebook from your favourite e-tailer or ask your bookstore about the paperback.

Guest post: Marianne de Pierres on Jeanne d’Orléans

 

Peacemaker Tour Banner

We’re killing two birds with one stone with this post, as it not only celebrates the launch of Marianne’s fantastic new Angry Robot novel Peacemaker (you can see where Peacemaker started, in Marianne’s short story in Australis Imaginarium!) but it’s about one of history’s most famous cranky ladies! Enjoy!

joanJeanne d’Orléans

Maybe it’s my French ancestry that flagged Jeanne d’Orléans in my tweenage consciousness, but her story has always intrigued me. On reflection, I believe that it was her apparent fearlessness and single-mindedness that was so interesting. I find, more and more, I tend to write about characters that are committed to a purpose. I’m attracted to female fictional characters who fit the same mould: Sarah Lund, Grace Hanadarko, and Olivia Dunham.

Our lives are full of distractions, and intent is so easily diluted by demands on our time and energy. It has become important to me to know that there are people who can negotiate through the web of mediocrity to pursue their purpose in a pure and uncompromising manner. Women in my era (I’m fifty plus), were raised to be compromising and conciliatory caregivers. While admirable qualities, they can also affect our ability to remain faithful to our beliefs. We were a generation of placaters and second-guessers.

Wiki says this about Jeanne:

The extent of her actual military leadership is a subject of historical debate. Traditional historians, such as Édouard Perroy, conclude that she was a standard bearer whose primary effect was on morale.[33] This type of analysis usually relies on the condemnation trial testimony, where she stated that she preferred her standard to her sword. Recent scholarship that focuses on the nullification trial testimony asserts that the army’s commanders esteemed her as a skilled tactician and a successful strategist. Stephen W. Richey’s opinion is one example: “She proceeded to lead the army in an astounding series of victories that reversed the tide of the war.”[29] In either case, historians agree that the army enjoyed remarkable success during her brief career.[34]

Naturally, I chose to accept the latter interpretation because there is no reason why it should not be the case. In the end though, Jean fell victim to politics. Her executioner is quoted as saying “he feared damnation” for burning her alive.

So he should have.

GR author pic_webMarianne de Pierres is the author of the acclaimed Parrish Plessis, the award-winning Sentients of Orion science fiction series and the upcoming Peacemaker SF Western series. The Parrish Plessis series has been translated into eight languages and adapted into a roleplaying game. She’s also the author of a teen dark fantasy series.

Marianne is an active supporter of genre fiction and has mentored many writers. She lives in Brisbane, Australia, with her husband and three galahs. Marianne writes award-winning crime under the pseudonym Marianne Delacourt. Visit her websites at www.mariannedepierres.com and www.tarasharp.com.au and www.burnbright.com.au

Cranky Ladies logoThis post is part of the Women’s History Month Cranky Ladies of History blog tour. If  you would like to read more about cranky ladies from the past, you might like to support our Pozible campaign, crowd-funding an anthology of short stories about Cranky Ladies of History from all over the world.