Yesterday I received some fantastic news about one of the authors who is with the Alexander Field Literary Agency (AFLA)! But I suppose I should start at the beginning.
I started working with author T.C. McCarthy a couple years ago, when his manuscript for a future war, military SF novel crossed my desk. I had been poring over stacks and stacks of manuscripts at the time, and while some were interesting and others were pretty well written, the large majority of what I slogged through was poor. Not much rattled me, got inside my head, or hit me at the core - and ultimately, that's what we look for, isn't it?
Then one morning, in the middle of my coffee, the third manuscript in a pile of manuscripts just grabbed hold of me with a bristling intensity and a sharp, often dark, wit. Sometimes this happens for a couple pages and then it subsides, and you must tamper down your excitement and move on. But this time, when I read T.C. McCarthy's first novel, a book called Germline, I tore through the first three chapters in one sitting and found myself hungry for more. The characters got into my head and stayed there; I thought about them the next day and wanted to continue reading.
Turns out, T.C. is a great guy, and a former CIA analyst who has experience working with complex weapons systems and biotechnology - perfect training for writing believable, scary, and rip-roaring military SF.
I asked for the whole manuscript and finished reading the novel a couple days later. Soon after I signed T.C., we took the book to every major SF publisher in New York, landing it finally with Orbit Books (www.orbitbooks.net). Orbit is a bold SF and Fantasy imprint that regularly publishes, not just the big names in this genre (although they publish many of those), but many of the best writers in the genre. I often see Orbit's books on best book lists or getting rave reviews in the trades, and they are breaking out some of the hot young voices in SF & F today. So we signed T.C. up for a three book deal, which required him to write like crazy, but off we went!
You can see the cover launch for Germline at Orbit's web site here.
A month ago the Publisher's Weekly write up came out, and Germline had earned a starred review - an accolade that frankly, is not very common. The review called the book a "compelling debut" that is "impossible to put down," an experience I certainly understood.
And yesterday, I found out that Germline was named one of Publisher's Weekly's Top Ten SF, Fantasy, & Horror Novels of the Fall Season (see the review in the June 27th issue of PW). This is great news, and well-earned praise for one of the best new SF writer's on the scene. Congratulations T.C.!
Germline, which is the first book in The Subterrene War trilogy, hits stores on July 26, 2011. And you can pre-order Germline on Amazon right now. I know you'll enjoy it as much as I did!