Wednesday, 6 January 2010

'Watcher of the Dead' news and art

J. V. Jones, author of the Sword of Shadows series, has confirmed that the fourth instalment - Watcher of the Dead - is finished:
"Moving quickly along let’s talk about Watcher of the Dead. Yes, it’s finished and yes it will be published this year. April in fact. Not a very long wait at all. I hate to give anything away and spoil surprises but I will say that all those people who have been writing to me asking "What happens next with Angus Lok?" may well have their question answered. I’ll post more about the book in the coming weeks."
This is good news for fans of the series, given the seriously delayed release of the third book A Sword From Red Ice (which was published in paperback six years after A Fortress of Grey Ice). The reaction to the third book was mixed, with some fans feeling Jones had lost the thread of the story, so hopefully Watcher will return to the high standards of the first two books (which are two of the finest epic fantasy novels around). I've only read the first two novels, and am waiting for the series to be completed before reading it in its entirety - anyone know how many books Jones expects it to run to? I seem to recall five being mooted, but can't be sure.

While we're on the subject of Sword of Shadows, artist Marc Simonetti - whose excellent artwork for GRRM's A Song of Ice and Fire was recently revealed - has also been busy producing some art for Jones's series.

Here's my favourite picture, of Raif with the Forsworn Sword:

Love the colours and atmosphere of this piece. No wonder Simonetti is in demand...


Adam Whitehead said...

I believe it's now six books.

Interestingly, A SWORD FROM RED ICE was apparently intentionally delayed (by some 18 months after it was delivered) so that WATCHER OF THE DEAD could be published 'relatively' quickly after it, and this may also be why WATCHER OF THE DEAD is half the size of the previous three books in the series (about 400 pages or so). Hopefully the much shorter length is a sign of Jones re-focusing and tightening the narrative somewhat.

Dan Smyth said...

Six?? Ugh. I can't help but have mixed feelings about this one. I loved the first two books. The third, I felt, went absolutely nowhere. It was more like an exercise on character development and world building alone, which I didn't much care for. So, yeah, the next book is only 400 pages, but now there are six? :) Despite this, I am still interested in seeing where things go, and will be reading this one when it comes out. Thanks for the update. Been wondering about this one for some time now.

T.D. Newton said...

I'm very excited for Watcher but, yes, I completely agree that the third book went pretty much nowhere. Definitely sick of hearing about Effie riding around on a boat.