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Martha Wells

My Flying Lizard Circus

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Emilie and the Hollow World is out today!

Emilie and the Hollow World, my YA fantasy, is out today in paperback and ebook.

This is the third book I finished back in 2009, during my career crash that lasted from around 2006-2007 to 2010. A career crash for a writer is kind of like if you had a job where you've been going in to work every day and everything seems fine. But then gradually, over time, you realize you've been fired, and they don't want you there and they aren't going to pay you and everyone you work with knows this. It's just that no one has told you.

The only solution to a career crash is to keep writing no matter how depressed and broke you are, so during 2007-2008 I wrote The Cloud Roads. While it was making its two year round being rejected by all the publishers in the world, I wrote the sequel The Serpent Sea and then tried a completely different direction with Emilie and the Hollow World. So it really means a lot to finally see this last book from that period published, and thanks very much to Strange Chemistry/Angry Robot for taking a chance on me.


While running away from home for reasons that are eminently defensible, Emilie's plans to stow away on the steamship Merry Bell and reach her cousin in the big city go awry, landing her on the wrong ship and at the beginning of a fantastic adventure. Taken under the protection of Lady Marlende, Emilie learns that the crew hopes to use the aether currents and an experimental engine, and with the assistance of Lord Engal, journey to the interior of the planet in search of Marlende's missing father. With the ship damaged on arrival, they attempt to traverse the strange lands on their quest. But when evidence points to sabotage and they encounter the treacherous Lord Ivers, along with the strange races of the sea-lands, Emilie has to make some challenging decisions and take daring action if they are ever to reach the surface world again.


"A rollicking adventure yarn with plenty of heart - Emilie & the Hollow World shouldn't be missed."
-USA Today bestselling author Ann Aguirre

Emilie is the best kind of adventurer -- curious, courageous, stubborn, resourceful, and quick to make friends. I can't wait to see where she goes exploring next.
-Sharon Shinn

Martha Wells' Emilie and the Hollow World is a lovely little adventure story that brings a modern sensibility to a classic pulp trope, re-enlivening and re-envisioning it for a contemporary audience. The hollow world, the accidental stowaway, steamships, airships, the gentleman or gentlewoman adventurer--these are elements that would be at home in a story told in the thirties. The clever and competent young heroine on the other hand--well that's another story entirely, and one that Martha Wells handles beautifully. Unlike those thirties pulps, this a book you wouldn't be embarrassed to give a thirteen year old soccer player who can't see any reason she won't grow up to be a physicist and the next president of the United States. Deft writing and consummate storytelling make a classic story fresh again for a new audience. All in all, Emilie and the Hollow World is a ripping yarn for a modern audience.
-Kelly McCullough, author of the WebMage and Fallen Blade series as well as the forthcoming YA School For Sidekicks: The Totally Secret Origin of Foxman Jr.

The first chapter is online here, and it's available at:

Paperback: Barnes and Noble, Chapters Indigo, Powell's, Mysterious Galaxy, The Tattered Cover, Book Depository.com, Book Depository UK, Books-a-Million, Waterstones UK, Amazon.com, Amazon UK, Amazon.ca, Amazon.de, Amazon.fr.

eBook: Barnes and Noble NookBook, Kindle US, Kobo, Kindle Germany, Kindle France, Kindle Spain, Kindle Italy, and DRM-free at The Robot Trading Company

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A most timely post, for many reasons. Congratulations!

My online exchange with the manager of our local sci-fi bookstore:

Me: I'm looking for Martha Wells new book, Emilie and the Hollow World. Will you be getting that in soon?

Their reply was: I hope so: we ordered it a while back. I'm excited myself -- I love Martha Wells. I'll let you know as soon as it arrives.

Yay new book day :D Mine shipped last night, so it should be here tomorrow :D

Cool. :) Hope you enjoy it!

Wooo! Mine hasn't arrived yet, but will soon, I hope!

Just bought a kindle version for myself. Congratulations on the release, I'm so happy you kept going because all of your writing delights me ♥

Cool, thank you very much! :)

Congratulations! Your writing has been a huge inspiration for me as an aspiring writer and I'm glad you kept on going, even when all of the odds were against you.

Thank you very much, that's really nice to hear. :)

It's hard to believe that no one wanted to publish the Raksura books. I am just finishing The Siren Depths and I am sad to see the series coming to an end. It might not fit into the preconceived notion of what sells these days, but they are excellent and it seems like they are finding their audience. I've read nothing else like them.

Thank you! I'm still hoping I might be able to do something else in that world.

I have this preordered and am looking forward to it.

Did you know that Liz Bourke at tor.com plans to do some posts on your work later this month? Her outline of her upcoming discussions is here: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2013/04/sleeps-with-monsters-apologia-pro-consilia-mea

Thanks! And yes, I knew about that. She did a short interview with me for it a couple of weeks ago.

Ooh! Must order it right away! I've been looking forward to reading this one ever since you first mentioned it.

Congratulations! I've been looking forward to it since you first mentioned it, as it's right up my steampunky alley!

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I like the steam-punkish cover. However, I notice that the words on the banner reads "Quote to Go here, Quote to go here...". Is there a story behind that, or was it a deliberate choice on the part of the artist?

It's a temporary image. The final version would presumably have a quote there about what a good book it is.

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