Books Read in May

Didn’t read that much this month – I had to edit my own work quite a bit and it took up most of my reading energy.

1. Golden Boy – Abigail Tarttelin. A contemporary novel about an intersex teen named Max. Excellently written and tugs at the heart strings. Very recommended (thanks Orion for the copy!)

foolsassassin2. Fool’s Assassin – Robin Hobb. MUAHAHA I GOT TO READ THIS BEFORE IT’S OUT. But now I have to wait until 2015 to find out what happens next. Noooo! This is a continuation of my favourite series by my favourite author. The last new Fitz & Fool book was released in 2003 (and I read it in 2004). It was surreal going back to these characters after so long. The last time I read them for the first time, I was a teenager and I’d just met my now-husband. I lived in California instead of Scotland. Fitz is older, but I’m older, too. I loved this book so much I can’t quite articulate it. I can’t wait to read it again. (thank you to HarperVoyager for the proof).

3. The Boy with the Porcelain Blade – Den Patrick. A member of Team Mushens and an excellent debut, out from Gollancz. It’s an intricate, atmospheric book set in a castle, slightly reminiscent of Gormenghast. There are houses, and the Orfano, people who are all slightly different in some way. It follows the story of Lucien, and time-jumps between his younger and older years. Recommended!

Total: 31 books

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The Robin Hobb Birthday Scavenger Hunt Clue – With Pictures

Last week, fantasy author Robin Hobb had a worldwide birthday scavenger hunt, and I was the hider in Aberdeen, Scotland. I came up with a poem for my clue, and while I hid it that morning, I took photos on my phone along the way, and thought that I’d share them now that all the presents have been found.

Before: Mowgli helped me wrap.

mowg

The present, a signed copy of Renegade’s Magic and Pantomime, were found by Louise Keating.

Location: Victoria Park, Rosemount, Aberdeen, Scotland, UK

I’m going to lead you down the rabbit hole.
The place you are meant to go is named after a queen.
She perhaps didn’t scream “Off with their heads!” but she
led an empire. That’s clear enough, isn’t it?
It’s a place of greenery and trees. Perhaps you played there as a child.
Got it? Start at the entrance.

20140305_075040On your right there will be a gatehouse, looking like something out of a fairy tale.
Perhaps smoke curls from the chimney. Perhaps you wonder who lives in it.

20140305_075121Continue down the promenade, under the trees, bare in the winter chill.
There may be people there, walking dogs, urging bundled children to run about.

20140305_075327 Stop at the fountain. It is made of fourteen different types of granite.
No water runs from it. It stands tall and imposing.

20140305_075353 Look to your left. There’s a little brick gate. Go through it.

20140305_075437
A little further along, there will be the remnants of a chess board on the asphalt,
nearly erased by time, its pieces long missing.
Around you are slumbering rose bushes.
When they bloom, no one paints the white blooms red.
They’re already crimson.
You’re almost there.

20140305_075516 There are two pillars of greenery right in front of you.
Between them is a black flower box.
Dig carefully.

20140305_075859 The treasure is against the wall closest to you, just hidden beneath the new soil.
There it is.
Take it home. Unwrap it. Read the letters.
Open the cover, run your fingertips along the pages.
Fall down the rabbit hole.

Bonus picture: Spring

20140305_080037

Robin Hobb’s Birthday Scavenger Hunt!

scavengerhunt

It’s Robin Hobb’s birthday! She is 62 today. One of my very favourite authors for over a decade now, it’s been lovely to be able to get to know her a bit better since I started my writing journey – I sent her Pantomime and she read it (and gave a blurb!) and I met her in person at WFC last year. I was very pleased when she approached me to help celebrate her birthday.

The post has gone live here. The shorter version here is that Robin Hobb and OfficeKat have been very sneaky the last few months, finding minions around the world to help plant gifts for readers all around the world, spanning from the UK, the US, New Zealand, Italy, and France. I hid my prize this morning, and I also added a little something of my own – a signed copy of Pantomime! I liked the idea of a book of mine and a book of Robin’s hiding out together. I’m not sure which book I had (it’s wrapped up), but if it’s a book with the Fitz and Fool, I can imagine Drystan and the Fool whispering ribald jokes to each other, with Micah and Fitz rolling their eyes at their antics.

Below is my clue. If you find it, take a photo! Also, please be a bit careful with the dirt and put it back in place, if you’d be so kind.

I’m going to lead you down the rabbit hole.
The place you are meant to go is named after a queen.
She perhaps didn’t scream “Off with their heads!” but she
led an empire. That’s clear enough, isn’t it?
It’s a place of greenery and trees. Perhaps you played there as a child.
Got it? Start at the entrance.
On your right there will be a gatehouse, looking like something out of a fairy tale.
Perhaps smoke curls from the chimney. Perhaps you wonder who lives in it.
Continue down the promenade, under the trees, bare in the winter chill.
There may be people there, walking dogs, urging bundled children to run about.
Stop at the fountain. It is made of fourteen different types of granite.
No water runs from it. It stands tall and imposing.
Look to your left. There’s a little brick gate. Go through it.
A little further along, there will be the remnants of a chess board on the asphalt,
nearly erased by time, its pieces long missing.
Around you are slumbering rose bushes.
When they bloom, no one paints the white blooms red.
They’re already crimson.
You’re almost there.
There are two pillars of greenery right in front of you.
Between them is a black flower box.
Dig carefully.
The treasure is against the wall closest to you, just hidden beneath the new soil.
There it is.
Take it home. Unwrap it. Read the letters.
Open the cover, run your fingertips along the pages.
Fall down the rabbit hole.

Happy hunting!

Shadowplay Edits Finished & New Blurb!

So…Shadowplay is back in my editor’s inbox! Hooray! It’s now more or less in the form it’ll be for ARCs, which is so very strange. It’s about to all start again.

Then the day became even better…in the evening I had a new blurb from Pantomime from none other than my favourite author for the past ten years. Slightly surreal to say the least!

“Pantomime by Laura Lam took me into a detailed and exotic world, peopled by characters that I’d love to be friends with . . . and some I’d never want to cross paths with.” – Robin Hobb

foolsfateRobin Hobb is the author of many fantasy novels, including the Farseer trilogy, Tawny Man trilogy, Live Ships trilogy, and the Rain Wild Chronicles. If you haven’t read them, you should change that as soon as you can.

Little teenage me would never have guessed my favourite author would ever read my book and like it enough to give it an endorsement. So yesterday was a very nice day 🙂