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Neom is Published!

It was publication day yesterday, and Neom is now available in all good shops! The audio edition comes out next week, and the collectors’ edition from PS Publishing should be out by the end of the year. Japanese and Polish editions are also forthcoming. It was fun to go back to the wider world of Central Station for a little while! Do check it out if you’re that way inclined.

I will be signing copies of Neom at Forbidden Planet, London, on the 24th! 6pm-7pm Thursday.

Machines roam the desert in search of purpose; works of art can be deadlier than weapons, and improbable love transcends the sands of time. From the multiaward-winning universe of Central Station, a complex desert-city of the future’s inhabitants rediscover passion while at the brink of revolution.

The city known as Neom is many things to many beings, human or otherwise. Neom is a tech wonderland for the rich and beautiful; an urban sprawl along the Red Sea; and a port of call between Earth and the stars.

In the desert, young orphan Saleh has joined a caravan, hoping to earn his passage off-world from Central Station. But the desert is full of mechanical artefacts, some unexplained and some unexploded. Recently, a wry, unnamed robot has unearthed one of the region’s biggest mysteries: the vestiges of a golden man.

In Neom, childhood affection is rekindling between loyal shurta-officer Nasir and hardworking flower-seller Mariam. But Nasu, a deadly terrorartist, has come to the city with missing memories and unfinished business.

Just one robot can change a city’s destiny with a single rose—especially when that robot is in search of lost love.

BLURBS

“This is Tidhar at his best: the crazily proliferating imagination, the textures, the ideas, the dazzling storytelling. A brilliant portrait of community and its possibilities.”
—Adam Roberts, author of Purgatory Mount

“Yet again, Lavie Tidhar’s future world of Neom is exciting and distinctive, his characters complex and fascinating, and his themes powerful and thought-provoking. He is the best sort of science fiction.”
—Kij Johnson, author of The River Bank

“Always expect the unexpected with Lavie Tidhar, and this welcome return to the sprawling space-operatic world of Central Station delivers oodles of poetry, action, memorable characters, wonderfully bizarre landscapes and wild imagination. No two books by Tidhar are ever the same, but each is a revelation.”
—Maxim Jakubowski, author of The Piper’s Dance

Neom is a real place. A completely batshit crazy place. Nonetheless, Lavie Tidhar, standing on the shoulders of Vance, Smith, and Ballard and others, imagines stories set in that place, a city in a wasteland near the Gulf of Suez, in a future filled with robots and AI and terrorartists and young boys and talking jackals and a wonderful, terrible solar system packed with life.”
—Jonathan Strahan

“Vivid and techno-mythological, Neom infects you with something special that transcends all the incidents and terrors—a shimmering current of guarded optimism.”
—David Brin, author of Existence, Earth and The Postman

“Lavie Tidhar’s Neom is a deliciously inventive wild ride through a future Middle East full of unexpected wonders: dutiful jackals, traumatized robots, terrifying terrorartists, caravans of elephants and great slinkying robotic khans, preserves for wild mechas and monasteries that are also singularities. But more than that, the world of Neom is deeply, richly lived in: the past and the present and the future are not just unevenly distributed, they are marbled together—tiny slithering tadpole robots adapted to the fused-glass desert around an ancient crash site, okra and tomatoes frying in a pan, rogue sandworms and grandmothers doing Tai Chi in an urban park, the Oort cloud and milkshakes, Martian soap opera Bedouin actors, a Bazaar of Rare and Exotic Machines equally excited by Atari Pac-Man cartridges and city-obliterating superweapons. It is this eye for detail, this deft touch intermingling now and someday, that makes Neom’s future so vividly real: not just human or gritty or lived-in, but full to bursting with the variety and complexity that characterize life. It is a world anchored by its characters: the bright ambition and yearning of the orphan Saleh, the sensible pragmatism and inexhaustible humanity of the capable housecleaner/flower vendor/receptionist/Tamagotchi shelter volunteer Miriam de la Cruz . . . and the robot, who is obsolete and dangerous, full of grief and mystery and philosophy, and whose obstinate mission beckons us ever forward through Neom’s pages. . . .”
—Benjamin Rosenbaum, author of The Unraveling

WHAT THEY SAY

“Fans of literary sci-fi are sure to be enchanted by the imaginative worldbuilding and tenderly wrought characters.” – Publishers Weekly

“Tidhar is a unique voice in science fiction … [Neom is] an enrapturing conglomeration of philosophy, psychology, and storytelling… Old and new fans alike will adore this fascinating new addition to Tidhar’s future Earth universe, and science fiction buffs would do well to put Tidhar on their radar of must-read authors.” – Library Journal

“Extraordinary and compassionate.” – Foreword (starred review)

Neom is a treasure, and Tidhar says that there are so many more stories from this complicated world. Every new one is a compelling chapter in this future history that reflects so much about who we are and the basic things we yearn for.”
SciFi Mind

“Lavie Tidhar’s Neom is a stunning return to his world of Central Station, twinning the fates of humans and robots alike at a futuristic city on the edge of the Red Sea.”
Green Man Review

“This was superb and I’m in awe of Tidhar’s vision. He’s conjured up a futuristic city that feels simultaneously ultramodern and also run down. The rich histories of the region and its cultures are seamlessly interwoven into the fabric of this fully-realized world.”
The Speculative Shelf

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It’s Publication Day for The Best of World SF: Volume 2!

The second annual instalment to the ‘rare and wonderful’ (The TimesThe Best of World SF Volume 1, this collection of twenty-nine stories, including eight original and exclusive additions, represents the state of the art in international science fiction.

Navigating around the globe, The Best of World SF Volume 2 features writers from Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Czech Republic, Greece, Grenada, India, Iraq, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, The Philippines, Poland, Russia, Singapore, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

Each story has been selected by World SF expert and award-winning author Lavie Tidhar. Taking us into space – Mars at first, then the stars – and then back to a strange, transformed Earth via AI, gods, aliens and the undead, the collection traces the ever-changing meaning of the genre from some of the most exciting voices writing today.

This is not a retrospective of what science fiction around the world used to look like. This is a snapshot of what some of it looks like now. And it’s never been more exciting.

BUY IT FROM

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Forbidden Planet

Book Depository

Barnes and Noble

Waterstones

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It’s Maror’s Publication Day!

Published today in hardcover and e-book! Pick up a copy from Amazon, Waterstones, W.H. Smith or elsewhere!

600+ pages, 152,000 words, this historical epic sweeps over four decades of a nation’s dark underbelly. What can I say – I like it!

Hear me talk about the book on Radio 4’s Open Book.

LoveReading say:

“Radiant with all the brutally elegant atmosphere of crime noir, and the richly nuanced complexity and style of Marlon James’ A Brief History of Seven Killings, it’s a genre-busting novel that will catch your breath … At once illuminating, thrilling and thought-provoking, this tale of corruption, killings, sacrifice and the souls that make up a nation is a symphonic feat of fiction.” – Order from LoveReading

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Announcing The Best of World SF: Volume 2!

This has been a lot of hard work behind the scene, and today I’m delighted to share the cover and table of contents for The Best of World SF: Volume 2! Published by Head of Zeus in hardcover and e-book in September (UK and elsewhere) and November (US), this is big 175,000 words anthology! Cover design by Ben Prior. It makes a gorgeous set with the first volume!

Pre-order: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Best-World-SF-2-ebook/dp/B09KM9VBQP/

US: https://www.amazon.com/Best-World-SF-2-ebook/dp/B09KM9VBQP/

Table of Contents:

1 Nadia Afifi, The Bahrain Underground Bazaar (7700 words), Bahrain

2 Lavanya Lakshminarayan, The Ten-Percent Thief (1300 words), India

3 Frances Ogamba, At Desk 9501 (5000 words), Nigeria *Original

4 Isabel Yap, Milagroso (4300 words), The Philippines

5 Saad Z. Hossain, Bring Your Own Spoon (4700 words), Bangladesh

6 Yukimi Ogawa, Blue Grey Blue (5200 words), Japan

7 Xing He, Your Multicolored Life, (8300 words), trans. Andy Dudak, China

8 Nalo Hopkinson, The Easthound (5900 words), Jamaica

9 Pan Haitian, Dead Man, Awake, Sing to the Sun! (3300 words), trans. Joel Martinsen, China *Original

10 Jacques Barcia, Salvaging Gods (4000 words), Brazil

11 Edmundo Paz Soldán, The Next Move (5400 words), trans. Jessica Sequeira, Bolivia *Original

12 Dilman Dila, The Clay Child (5800 words), Uganda *Original

13 Natalia Theodoridou, To Set at Twilight In a Land of Reeds (3700 words), Greece

14 Bef, The Beast Has Died (5600 words), trans. Brian L. Price, Mexico

15 Alberto Chimal, Twenty About Robots (2900 words), trans. Fionn Petch, Mexico

16 Wole Talabi, The Regression Test (4000 words), Nigeria

17 William Tham Wai Liang, Kakak (4800 words), Malaysia

18 Usman T. Malik, Beyond These Stars Other Tribulations of Love (3200 words), Pakistan

19 Julie Novakova, A Flaw In The Works (8600 words), trans. by author. Czech Republic *Original

20 Cassandra Khaw, When We Die On Mars (3100 words), Malaysia

21 Karen Lord and Tobias S. Buckell, The Mighty Slinger (9700 words), Barbados/Grenada

22 T.L. Huchu, Corialis (7100 words), Zimbabwe

23 Clelia Farris, The Substance of Ideas (3100 words), trans. Rachel S. Cordasco, Italy

24 Agnieszka Hałas, Sleeping Beauties (6000 words), trans. by author, Poland *Original

25 Samit Basu, Waking Nydra (7400 words), India *Original

26 Neon Yang, Between The Firmaments (20300 words), Singapore

27 Bo-Young Kim, Whale Snows Down (3300 words), trans. Sophie Bowman, South Korea

28 Hassan Blasim, The Gardens of Babylon (8000 words), trans. Jonathan Wright, Iraq

29 K.A. Teryna, The Farctory (11350), trans.  Alex Shvartsman, Russia *Original

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Announcing Neom!

Neom

by Lavie Tidhar

ISBN: 978-1-61696-382-8 print; 978-1-61696-383-5 digital formats

Published: November 2022

Available Format(s): Trade Paperback and Digital Books

Machines roam the desert in search of purpose; works of art can be deadlier than weapons, and improbable love transcends the sands of time. From the multiaward-winning universe of Central Station, a complex desert-city of the future’s inhabitants rediscover passion while at the brink of revolution.

“Can we just all admit now that Lavie Tidhar’s a genius?”
—Daryl Gregory, award-winning author of Spoonbenders

The city known as Neom is many things to many beings, human or otherwise. Neom is a tech wonderland for the rich and beautiful; an urban sprawl along the Red Sea; and a port of call between Earth and the stars.

In the desert, young orphan Saleh has joined a caravan, hoping to earn his passage off-world from Central Station. But the desert is full of mechanical artefacts, some unexplained and some unexploded. Recently, a wry, unnamed robot has unearthed one of the region’s biggest mysteries: the vestiges of a golden man.

In Neom, childhood affection is rekindling between loyal shurta-officer Nasir and hardworking flower-seller Mariam. But Nasu, a deadly terrorartist, has come to the city with missing memories and unfinished business.

Just one robot can change a city’s destiny with a single rose—especially when that robot is in search of lost love.

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Announcing MAROR!

LAVIE TIDHAR’S STATE OF THE NATION NOVEL TO BE PUBLISHED BY HEAD OF ZEUS

Head of Zeus is delighted to be publishing Maror by Lavie Tidhar, an angry and moving novel that chronicles the creation of the state of Israel through the lives of its people.  

CEO and Publisher Nicolas Cheetham acquired UK & Commonwealth, excluding Canada, rights for Maror for Head of Zeus from John Berlyne at the Zeno Agency and will be published in hardback and ebook, under the Apollo fiction imprint, on 4th August 2022. 

Maror poses to the reader a central question – how do you build a nation?

Across four decades and three continents, Lavie Tidhar seeks to give an answer. It takes statesmen and soldiers, farmers and factory workers, of course. But it also takes thieves, prostitutes and policemen. 

Nation-building demands sacrifice. And one man knows exactly where those bodies are buried: Cohen, a man who loves his country. A reasonable man for unreasonable times. 

A car bomb in the back streets of Tel Aviv. A diamond robbery in Haifa. Civil war in Lebanon. Rebel fighters in the Colombian jungle. An assassination in Cancún. 

How do they all connect? Only Cohen knows. 

Lavie Tidhar draws on his own experience growing up in Israel and on the nation’s turbulent recent history to tell an authentic story about creating your own identity – on a personal and a universal level.

Lavie Tidhar said, ‘James Joyce once said he couldn’t write of Ireland until he was away from her, and perhaps this is true of anyone’s home – that to be seen clearly it must be viewed from afar, with a love no longer blinded to the flaws. My publisher Nicolas Cheetham told me to write the book I always wanted to write, and the result is Maror: a huge, painstaking fictional exploration of very real events. It led me like a historical detective from one hard-to-believe event to the next. Guided by a retired crime beat reporter, extensive newspaper archives and my father’s colourful stories, as well as my own recollections of growing up in Israel in the 80s and 90s, I began to piece together the true and secret story of a country I thought I knew but didn’t.

It is a big book, in all senses of the word. It was exhilarating to write. And I can’t wait to share it.

Nicolas Cheetham said, ‘Maror is the book Lavie Tidhar was meant to write. It is the book only Lavie could write. Over 560 pages, Lavie channels all his award-winning, subversive brilliance (not to mention his encyclopaedic knowledge of Israeli pop music) into a mosaic of stories and characters. It’s a story of hope, and the many ways hope can die.’

Lavie Tidhar was born just ten miles from Armageddon and grew up on a kibbutz in northern Israel. He has since made his home in London. He won the Jerwood Fiction Uncovered Prize for Best British Fiction, was twice longlisted for the International Dublin Literary Award and was shortlisted for the CWA Dagger Award and the Rome Prize. He co-wrote Art and War: Poetry, Pulp and Politics in Israeli Fiction, and is a columnist for the Washington Post.

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The Candy Mafia nominated for the Magnolia Book Awards 2022!

I was delighted to discover the other day that The Candy Mafia (aka Candy, or in various translations as The City Without Chocolate; For A Fistful of Smarties; Secret Agent Candy and the Chocolate Mafia; etc) has been nominated for Mississippi’s Magnolia Book Awards in the 3rd-5th Grade category.

I’m honoured!

As a reminder, you can also download and play for free the Candy Mafia Tap ‘n Pop mobile game!

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The Escapement nominated for the Philip K. Dick Award!

Found out last night that The Escapement is on the shortlist for the Philip K. Dick Award!

As a Philip K. Dick fan this one is particularly joyful.

January 11, 2022

For Immediate Release

The judges of the 2022 Philip K. Dick Award and the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society, along with the Philip K. Dick Trust, are pleased to announce the six nominated works that comprise the final ballot for the award:

    DEFEKT by Nino Cipri (Tordotcom Publishing)

    PLAGUE BIRDS by Jason Sanford (Apex Book Company)

    BUG by Giacomo Sartori, translated by Frederika Randall (Restless Books)

    FAR FROM THE LIGHT OF HEAVEN by Tade Thompson (Orbit)

    THE ESCAPEMENT by Lavie Tidhar (Tachyon Publications)

    DEAD SPACE by Kali Wallace (Berkley Books)

First prize and any special citations will be announced on Friday, April 15, 2022 at Norwescon 44. Plans for the ceremony will be posted at https://www.norwescon.org.

The Philip K. Dick Award is presented annually with the support of the Philip K. Dick Trust for distinguished science fiction published in paperback original form in the United States during the previous calendar year. The award is sponsored by the Philadelphia Science Fiction Society and the Philip K. Dick Trust and the award ceremony is sponsored by the Northwest Science Fiction Society.    Last year’s winner was ROAD OUT OF WINTER by Alison Stine (Mira) with a special citation to THE BOOK OF KOLI by M. R. Carey (Orbit). The 2021 judges are John P. Murphy, Kelly Robson, David Sandner, Allen Steele, and Molly Tanzer (Chair).

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The Bookman released in Dramatic Audio edition!

GraphicAudio are in the process of releasing all three of my Bookman Histories novels in a full-cast audio production, beginning with The Bookman, released on December 31st, 2021! It is available as a digital download, and MP3-CDs will be available this month.

Cast and Crew

Director Steve Wannall

Starring Steve Wannall as narrator, Robb Moreira as Orphan, Terence Aselford as Gilgamesh, Yasmin Tuazon as Lucy

Also with John Kielty, Laura C Harris, Stephon Walker, Wyn Delano, Elias Khalil, Rob McFadyen, Steven Carpenter, Christopher Williams, Alejandro Ruiz, Zeke Alton, Mike Ciporkin, Marni Penning, Nanette Savard, Eric Messner, Chris Davenport, Matthew Pauli, Kaylee Eluvian, Colleen Delany, Rayner Gabriel, Nora Achrati, Scott McCormick, Keval Shah, and Bradley Foster Smith

Book Adapted for GraphicAudio by Steve Wannall

Dialogue Editors Abigail Rose Raetz and Robert McDonald

Sound Designers Abigail Rose Raetz and Robert McDonald

Cover artwork by David Frankland represented by Artist Partners Ltd

Producers Richard Rohan, Duane Beeman and Matt Webb

Executive Producer Anji Cornette

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End of Year: 2021

Previous posts: 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016

Well, it’s been another weird year. I’m pivoting out of genre and into general fiction next year so that’s much on my mind these days. I’m writing a graphic novel for my long-time artist at the moment while waiting for the year to end. I got into making small mobile games during the seemingly-never-ending pandemic, so there’s that too – a new addition to the annual “end of year” list. I managed to do one international gig in person this year – Imaginales in France, which was a lot of fun. It’s dark and grey outside. Or is it “gray”? Does anyone know?

I probably published too much in 2021. This isn’t going to change for 2022, it seems. Anyhow, this is what I had out this year.

Books

Where do I even start? The Escapement came out in paperback in the US from Tachyon, with a PS Publishing hardcover limited edition coming out in the UK any day now. The Hood was published in hardcover by Head of Zeus in the UK. And Adler was published in trade omnibus edition by Titan.

Head of Zeus also released Osama: The Tenth Anniversary Edition as well as a new edition of A Man Lies Dreaming, both in paperback, and the paperback edition of By Force Alone.

Tor released the paperback edition of By Force Alone in the US.

Peachtree released The Candy Mafia in the US in paperback, following last year’s hardcover edition.

The Best of World SF: Volume 1 was published by Head of Zeus in both the US and UK in hardcover.

I also had fun putting together my “Hitler: P.I.” stories into a collection, The Lunacy Commission, published in e-book and paperback by Jabberwocky. A bit of a vanity project, but fun. A Man Lies Dreaming also has a new paperback edition in the US from Jabberwocky, and they look nice as a set!

Jabberwocky also released The Big Blind in e-book, following the original hardcover edition from PS Publishing last year.

Unholy Land was published in France and Poland.

Awards

Central Station won the Chinese Nebula (Xingyin) Award for best translated fiction. There was a big ceremony/party in Hainan and I woke up to a flurry of WeChat messages – sadly I couldn’t be there!

Unholy Land won both the Prix Planete SF and the Prix ActuSF de l’uchronie in France. I got to pick up the first one in person!

“Judge Dee and the Limits of the Law” was nominated for a Stabby Award (from Reddit) and for a Eugie Award.

By Force Alone was nominated for the British Fantasy Award.

Oh, I also became Writer in Residence and Visiting Professor at Richmond, The American International University in London!

Short Stories

  • “The Lunacy Commission”. Published as the title story of The Lunacy Commission.
  • “The Eves: Notes on a Different Exhibition” was published by the Jewish Museum Berlin in an art book accompanying an exhibition by the artist Yael Bartana. It’s a massive volume, in German and English editions.
  • “The Wasted Chewing Gum Bacteriome: An Oral History” was published in Nature. Read online.
  • “The Egg Collectors” was published in Interzone.
  • “Wild Geese” was published in F&SF.
  • “The Green Caravanserai” was published in anthology Out of the Ruins.
  • “Rain Falling in the Pines” was published in Clarkesworld. Read online.
  • “Judge Dee and the Three Deaths of Count Werdenfels” came out from Tor.com. Read online.
  • “Judge Dee and the Poisoner of Montmartre” came out from Tor.com. Read online.

Mobile Games:

I wrote and released 5 mobile games this year under my new Candy Arcade Games label. You can also play them online on Itch.io.

  • Cornucopia: Catch Everything! is a little catching game where hundreds of unique objects fall from the skies. It was the first one I made and released.
  • Bitcoin Catcher! is another idle catching game but mostly done as a joke about bitcoin.
  • Candy Mafia Tap ‘n Pop is a tapping and popping game I made as a little tie-in to the paperback release of the novel.
  • The Escapement is by far my most complicated game to date, an endless side-scrolling shooter with some surrealist elements – a sort of tie-in to the novel. Pretty proud of this one – it was a leap forward in terms of what it does and how it looks.
  • Bullies Stole My Lunch! (aka Playground Simulator). A playground survival simulator. It’s a fun concept.

Next Year

I have the usual slew of short stories scheduled for publication – 11 or so, I think, so far. There will be a new Judge Dee story in 2022, and another in 2023 (I know people seem to like these). There’ll be some SF, some crime, and one story for the Royal Literary Fund. Things to expect: Balloon Noir, more Neo-Neanderthal Cyberpunk, a zombie story and something about donkeys. And I’ll be in the latest reboot of New Worlds, which is due to come out soon.

Maror, The big literary novel (all 153,000 words of it) is scheduled for August. I’ll be talking about it a lot more in the new year.

Neom will be out from Tachyon in the US in, I think, the autumn.

I have a few games I’m hoping to make in the new year. I’m in the early stages of a new novel. I’m doing this fun graphic novel, which is in the writing-and-conceptual-sketches stage. There’s another anthology coming, too.

You know, the usual.