Aces! Jokers! Once more into the breach… or close the wall up with our English dead.
Which is another way of saying that I’ve just finished editing and assembling our latest Wild Cards book, KNAVES OVER QUEENS, the twenty-seventh volume in the overall series (assuming the current projected publication schedule remains unchanged, which might not be the case), and our first in-depth visit to the British Isles.
Past Wild Cards books have taken our characters all over the world (once literally so, on the world tour that formed the spine of volume four, ACES ABROAD), and we’ve called a few times in England and Ireland for a scene or maybe a story, but we’ve never lingered there long enough to see how the virus affected Great Britain and Ireland… until now. KNAVES OVER QUEENS is, in a sense, a bookend book for our very first volume, WILD CARDS. Both books begin in 1946, with the release of the wild card, and both carry the story through the decades up to the present… 1986 for WILD CARDS, and 2017 for KNAVES OVER QUEENS. In the former, the focus is on New York City and the US; in the new book, it’s on the United Kingdom and Ireland.
The lineup this time around:
KEVIN ANDREW MURPHY: “A Flint Lies in the Mud” and “But a Flint Holds Fire,”
PEADAR O GUILIN: “The Coming of the Crow,” “Cracks in the City,” and “Feeding on the Entrails,”
CAROLINE SPECTOR: “Needles and Pins,”
PAUL CORNELL: “Night Orders,”
CHARLES STROSS: “Police On My Back,”
MARKO KLOOS: “Probationary,”
PETER NEWMAN: “Twisted Logic,”
MELINDA M. SNODGRASS: “Ceremony of Innocence,”
EMMA NEWMAN: “How to Turn a Girl to Stone,”
MARK LAWRENCE: “The Visitor.”
If you’ve ever wondered about the backstories of Captain Flint and Double Helix, this is the book for you… but most of the stories will be given over to brand new characters rather than established ones. I can’t wait for you to meet them. By the time you put the book down, I think you’ll be wanting more. I know that I certainly do. And as you’ve undoubtedly noticed, we’ve recruited a bunch of terrific new writers to the consortium ranks as well. Expect great things.
I know, I know, I am hardly objective, but I think we have some great tales in KNAVES, and I’m very proud of this one. I’ll confess, I was a wee bit disappointed when Wild Cards didn’t even get a whiff of a nomination in the Hugo Awards for Best Series, considering that we’ve been doing some great work IMNSHO for thirty years now. Only one thing to do about that: try to do EVEN BETTER books in the future. I think we will…
KNAVES OVER QUEENS will be published by Tor in the US and Voyager in the UK. No publication dates yet, but you’ll know when I know. While you wait, keep your eyes peeled for MISSISSIPPI ROLL, LOW CHICAGO, and TEXAS HOLD’ EM, the next three volumes in the pipeline..