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13 October 2009 @ 10:24 am

A few years ago, Laura Anne Gilman mentioned a high concept she’d come up with for a new series–a fantasy world in which wine was the carrying vessel for magics. I was *completely* taken with the idea, not in an “I want to write it” sense, but very much in an “I want to read it” sense, and I watched and waited with enthusiastic impatience while she pitched and sold the idea and began to write it. And because I Know People In High Places (ie, the writer), I got an advance copy of the manuscript earlier this year, and got to read the book months ago.

It was every bit as well executed as I’d hoped. The main character, Jerzy, is a slave in his master’s vineyards who proves to have an affinity for the vine. Through Jerzy, we learn the magic of the world (and root for him has he gets in over his head). Laura Anne has done an absolutely gorgeous job of creating a system that’s completely unique, totally fascinating, and wholly understandable. I don’t think I’ve ever come across a magic system I’ve liked more.

The pacing of the book is entirely different from her urban fantasy, as it should be. This is a single story unwinding over three novels, with a cast of many (if not quite thousands); the payoffs are in watching a boy and a world adapt and change, not in zingy one-liners and quick wit (though you get some of that as well). I was very, very pleased with FLESH & FIRE, and would like to give Laura Anne a little cheer (yay!) for Book Release Day today. :)

You can read an excerpt and buy it online at Laura Anne’s website, or, y’know, hit a local bookstore and snatch up your copy instantaneously. :)

(x-posted from the essential kit)
Current Mood: pleasedpleased
Janne: When I Was Your Age (rookie131)janne on October 13th, 2009 09:50 am (UTC)
Sounds fun, I'll definitely have a look at that. (Also, recently finished re-reading The Infinito Concerto/The Serpent Mage, in which one of the scarier mages also uses wine as a vessel for magic :)
pgwfolcpgwfolc on October 13th, 2009 11:17 am (UTC)
Sounds cool. I'll check it out. Thanks for the rec! :)
Bryantbryant on October 13th, 2009 12:18 pm (UTC)
Ooooh, thumbs up. (Green ones, of course.)
Laura Anne Gilmansuricattus on October 13th, 2009 12:39 pm (UTC)
Awww... *blushes*

(now where's my fudge, woman? *grin*)
kitmizkit on October 13th, 2009 03:22 pm (UTC)
Waiting for you to tell me the weather's cooled down enough to send it!
Laura Anne Gilmansuricattus on October 13th, 2009 03:29 pm (UTC)
Hey, they turned the heat on in my building last night, I think we're there... *blinks piteously*
kitmizkit on October 13th, 2009 03:30 pm (UTC)
And you leave for San Jose when?
Axisor: Krosp and Cubeaxisor on October 13th, 2009 01:18 pm (UTC)
Sounds great.... Will have to peruse it :)
Min: NL/CanYouReadphantomminuet on October 13th, 2009 04:29 pm (UTC)
I heard her read from the first book in the series at Dragon*con this year. It sounded fantastic.
allaboutm_eallaboutm_e on October 13th, 2009 04:42 pm (UTC)
Also finished my advanced copy and very much enjoyed it. But should've already written a review, so I don't sound too echoy of your comments... oh, well...
TuftEars: Writingtuftears on October 13th, 2009 07:34 pm (UTC)
It looks intriguing! Though I wonder why the title - wouldn't 'Flesh & Wine' have been more suitable?
kitmizkit on October 13th, 2009 08:01 pm (UTC)
No, but you'd have to read it to know why. :)