Hello, hello and welcome to this week’s Robot Round-Up: a day earlier than usual, on the grounds that we’ve got a Long Weekend here in the UK due to the Easter double Bank Holiday. (Which is nice.)

Without further ado:

The Alchemist of Souls by Anne LyleAnne Lyle – whose debut fantasy novel of Elizabethan-era swashbuckling and intrigue, The Alchemist of Souls, is Out Now – has been interviewed by Sci-Fi Bulletin and I Will Read Books this week – plenty of great background info on the generation of the Night’s Masque series milieu and characters in both of those.

The Alchemist of Souls itself has been thoroughly examined and reviewed by Keith at Red Rook Reviews and warmly reviewed by pablocheesecake at The Eloquent Page. And Anne has been explaining How to Tell You’re Elizabethan, just in case you were wondering where that urge to wear doublet, hose and an enormous codpiece comes from…

Also Out Now, we have Costume Not Included by Matthew Hughes, which has been reviewed by Mieneke at A Fantastical Librarian, who said: “Costume Not Included is a funny, clever book”. (Mieneke also made the quite sensible point that you really ought to read the first part of the series, The Damned Busters to get the very utmost out of this one…)

Chuck Wendig‘s Blackbirds is almost upon us (a few short weeks to wait) and continues to attract attention and accolades, the latest being courtesy of J. C. at Just One More Page, who said: “Not only is it dark and brutal, but it’s also funny, and sweet in parts. It runs the gamut of human emotion, and Miriam will draw you in almost despite yourself.” and David Brzeski for the British Fantasy Society, who said: “Chuck Wendig is one of those rare authors with such masterful use of language, and such a good ear for dialogue, that he engages the reader from the first page and never lets go.”

Evil Dark, by Justin GustainisNext month (May) we’re also publishing Evil Dark by Justin Gustainis and by way of a refresher, we’ve seen a new review of series-opener Hard Spell from Paul Simpson at Sci-Fi Bulletin, who said: “If you enjoy hard-boiled cop stories, of the LA Confidential kind, you’ll get a kick out of the various ways in which the genre is subverted during this story.”

Chris F. Holm‘s Dead Harvest gets yet another rave in the Los Angeles Review of Books and another at The House of Crime and Mystery and another courtesy of Morpheus Tales Supplement, issue #16. Go, Chris!

Adam Christopher has been talking to The Geek Syndicate about that new book deal of his and to antipodean national newspaper The New Zealand Herald as well (you’ve got to love a fake-hysterical headline like that one, eh?) And Empire State has been reviewed by Benito at Betwixt Book Reviews, who said: “Empire State is so engrossing and so action packed a read, it is hard to believe this is Adam Christopher’s debut … You will be captivated, entertained, and before you know it, left wanting more”.

Adam also generously donated some space on his blog to newly-signed Strange Chemistry author Laura Lam and invited her to tell everyone about her debut novel, Pantomime.

Over at The Geek Syndicate, Dion took a look at David Tallerman‘s Giant Thief and got on really well with the book’s rogueish anti-hero: “David Tallerman has created a charming scoundrel in Easie Damasco; one whose company I would definitely seek out again.” (You’ll get an opportunity to do just that in October, Dion, when Crown Thief will be hitting the shelves…) And Morpheus Tales Supplement, issue #16 carried another great review: “Tallerman writes with a pace and style that makes the book impossible to put down. Fantasy adventure doesn’t get more exciting than this.”

Carpathia by Matt ForbeckMatt Forbeck‘s Dracula-Titanic mash-up Carpathia was reviewed by James Floyd Kelly for Wired.com’s Geek Dad blog, who drew the following conclusion: “Very dark. Seriously twisted. I enjoyed every bit of it.”

Livejournal blogger Gillian Polack has been running a Women’s History Month feature over on her site and several AR authors have contributed pieces: Jo Anderton on Ellis Rowan, Kaaren Warron, interviewed by Gillian and Trent Jamieson, on Krissy Kneen.

AR stalwart Andy Remic is making a special offer at his Anarchy Books website, where you can find details of how from April 6th – 11th you can grab a FREE download of the Vivisepulture anthology, featuring short fiction by a host of top-name authors (including our very own Lee Harris, no less!).

AR stalwart-in-waiting Lee Battersby, whose fantastical debut The Corpse-Rat King we’re publishing in September, has been in touch to say he’s set up a Facebook page, if anyone feels like liking it, maybe..? (For which, you should read: like it! Like it now, meat-suits!)

And finally, our Marco has been chatting to Conflux – the 52nd National Australian Science Fiction Convention – of which he is the Editor Guest of Honour.

That’s all for this week. Happy Long Weekend to all our UK-based readers and anyone else who’s got a couple of days booked off work. Commiserations to everyone else.

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