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Archive for July, 2010

Harmony AND Happy Anniversary

Harmony by Project Itoh releases today! As I mentioned last month when editorial copies arrived, I am especially excited about this book, which presses all my buttons—it’s a satire, near-future SF with a darkly comic tinge to it.

It’s also Haikasoru’s anniversary—our first two titles released a year ago tomorrow. So far we’ve put out eleven books, and I think we’ve done pretty well. All You Need Is KILL is on the production fast-track at Warner Bros, ZOO was nominated for the Shirley Jackson award, and we’ve found plenty of enthusiastic readers for science fiction in translation—something many observers said simply couldn’t be done. Here’s hoping there’ll be many more years, and many more readers, to come.

It’s my anniversary, but buy yourselves a present: I recommend Harmony.

Doug Liman on All You Need Is KILL

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s movie night in America, so that brings to mind All You Need Is KILL, now in development at Warner Bros as a major motion picture. Here’s director Doug Liman on the project:

All You Need is Kill is a project that I’m developing at Warner Brothers. It’s an amazing script. It’s a wholly original piece of writing. It delivers all of the wiz-bang satisfaction of a big Hollywood effects movie, but it does it in a completely original way. You can find truly original pieces of writing, but they’re original because you go, “Who would have even have thought of that?,” or, “Why would anyone ever want to go see that?”

So be sure to pick up the book, so you can scoff at your nerdo friends and say, “Oh, I’ve known about All You Need Is KILL for YEARS!”

A whole bunch of reviews!

Let’s see, over at the popular science fiction blog Bibliophile Stalker, it must be Haikasoru Week, because there are three reviews up since Sunday.

On Loups-Garous: Kyogoku makes the reader question the dystopic elements of the setting; the characters feel mortal and just when you’ve left your guard down, a twist in the plot keeps you unsettled.

On Slum Online: …excels in conveying the virtue of humble accomplishment, of proving to yourself that you’re the best, even if the public isn’t necessarily aware of it.

On The Next Continent: It harkens to conventions of a certain genre of science fiction [hard SF] and yet is nonetheless infused with Japanese optimism and culture. (I think this is the first review of The Next Continent I’ve seen, so I’m especially happy.)

Meanwhile, over at Otaku USA, we have reviews of different titles.

On The Stories of Ibis: I firmly believe in the importance of fiction and mythopoeia in helping people understand themselves, others, and the world around them, and in providing a safer environment to come to grips with complex, troubling issues…

On Usurper of the Sun: This frequently fascinating debate on alternative forms of consciousness permeates the novel, twining with the time limit until the Builders arrive in the solar system to provide the main narrative thrust.

Well, what are you waiting for? Consume!

The Shirley Jackson Awards or, I Got A Rock

The winners of the 2009 Shirley Jackson Awards have been announced, and sadly for us, nominee ZOO by Otsuichi didn’t win in its category of Best Collection. Congrats to the winners Tunneling to the Center of the Earth by Kevin Wilson (Harper Perennial) and Love Songs for the Shy and Cynical by Robert Shearman (Big Finish Productions). I suppose a three-way tie out of a field of five finalists would have been too much to ask for.

Luckily, the Jacksons offer a little lagniappe for all the nominees, so soon we’ll be shipping Otsuichi his very own “The Lottery”—style throwing stone:

And now, just for kicks, here’s the brief speech that would have been read out at today’s ceremony, had Otsuichi won:

Hello, everybody. My name is Otsuichi, and I write novels in Japan. I
feel very honored to be receiving this award. Thank you so much for this
acknowledgment of my work. I’m going to tell my wife and parents about
this right away. I know they’ll all be happy for me. When I write, I
never have confidence in my stories. I write in fear of my anxiety, and
every time I think, “I’m going to quit being a writer after I finish
this novel.” However, receiving recognition like this gives me courage.
I feel I can continue writing a bit longer, and I’ll be so happy if more
people read my work as a result of this award. Thank you so much.

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