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Lizard Brain is a shared blog about Science Fiction and Fantasy from Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck.

How To Buy Cibola Burn

05.23.14
by Daniel Abraham

The early reviews of Cibola Burn are pretty decent.  Starred reviews in Publisher’s Weekly and Library Journal.  We’re being sent out on a book signing tour for the first time ever.  Interest is high, especially with the TV show taking shape.  But chances are good that the preorders are going to be low.  Why?  Because Amazon has decided to escalate its let’s-call-them-negotations with Hachette by pulling the preorder option.

Coming soon to a bookstore near you!

Coming soon to a bookstore near you!

Now to be perfectly honest, we’re going to be fine.  Our last book hit the NYT bestseller list, and this makes it less likely the next one will, but James SA Corey is a solid thing.  Some of our fellow authors at Orbit and Little Brown aren’t in as good a position.  Maybe they don’t have three books already out or the books they have have taken longer to grow the series.  Whatever.  My point is that there are damned good writers and people who are going to be hurt by this.  Hell, we’ll be hurt by this too.  It’s just we bought up to a 16 constitution and have enough hit points.

So let’s talk about how you can buy Cibola Burn.

I mentioned that we were going on a book tour, right?  Well, almost all those signings are going to be at independent bookstores!  Many of which will be happy to have us sign a book for you while we’re there!

TATTERED COVER in Denver

We’ll be at the Highland’s Ranch location on June 18th.

POWELL’S in Portland

We’ll be at the Cedar Hill store on June 19th.

MYSTERIOUS GALAXY in San Diego

We’ll be there on June 20th.

BORDERLANDS BOOK in San Francisco

We’ll be there on June 21st.

ELLIOT BAY BOOKS in Seattle

We’ll be there on June 22nd, our bodies broken and our lives in shambles.

Consider ordering from one of these stores.  We’re happy to sign and personalize the books, and most if not all of them will ship Cibola Burn (or any other books you’d care to pick up) straight to you afterward.

Failing that, Cibola Burn — like all Hachette titles — is still available shipping at no particular delay from Barnes & Noble, Books-a-Million, and a wide variety of critically important indie bookstores near you.

Just not Amazon. Please do feel free to mention this to your friends, your enemies, pretty much everyone you know.

78 Responses »

  1. Still miffed you guys aren’t coming to Minneapolis. I’d love to meet you, new book aside. :)

  2. So what happens to those that did pre-order it through Amazon? I am not the biggest fan of Amazon but when you get a little build up of gift cards from the holidays it is mighty nice to pre-order a bunch of books. So if this doesn’t get resolved and they decide to delay my order I will for sure be cancelling it and go one of the other options listed. Does this affect the “Pre-order CIBOLA BURN and receive a signed bookplate!” if you put in your Amazon receipt? I need to email people and tell them to buy me Powell’s gift cards in the future. Oh well look forward to Cibola Burn somehow in the future.

    • I assume Amazon will honor the orders it’s already taken, but that’s an assumption. I’m still hoping that the whole thing gets resolved before Cibola hits shelves, but I’d also like a pony.

      I can vouch for Orbit honoring the bookplate thing with Amazon receipts — this won’t affect that.

      • Thank you for confirming that.
        I also pre-ordered from Amazon, and I’ll wait and see if Amazon would still be able to fill that order or The Widow’s House for that matter.

      • Hachette has an extensive list of where Cibola Burn can be purchased right now. If you haven’t found the book yet, try http://www.hachettebookgroup.com

        You can also purchase the hardcover, ebook or audiobook now at Orbit:
        http://www.orbitbooks.net

        After a hearty effort to convince my mind to enjoy the audiobook no matter what, I finally tired of all the little mind-hacks required to go on with the verbal non-flow. The presentation of Avasarala was the last straw. I will read the book instead, and I suggest you all do the same. Nearly everyone dislikes the poor narrator intensely, except one reviewer who is fantastically unbelievable.

        I’ve seen Audible respond to this kind of wholesale outrage before- and redo the book. It can happen when, as now, everyone is bitterly complaining *because they love the book*. Goodreads ratings this morning are 4.28, and so on. So never mind. Basically a typical First World problem and we’ll all recover. Not a bad thing to shake up Audible once in a while either.

  3. Not sure if this is the appropriate venue to ask, but I was wondering if there was any possibility of printing a physical collection of THE EXPANSE novellas and short stories? … It would be great to have them all together and really great for those of us who don’t enjoy reading on our hand terminals :-)

    Thanks… And I can’t wait for CIBOLA BURN!!

  4. Hey mat, i’ve been dieing for a good sci-fi series to rival game of thrones and etc, so when I heard SyFy picked up your book i jumped to go read it. I’m half way through Leviathan wakes and loving it. I picked up Caliban’s war yesterday and I wanted to know how I can get the 4th in Sydney Australia.

  5. Hey mate, i’ve been dieing for a good sci-fi series to rival game of thrones and etc, so when I heard SyFy picked up your book i jumped to go read it. I’m half way through Leviathan wakes and loving it. I picked up Caliban’s war yesterday and I wanted to know how I can get the 4th in Sydney Australia.

    • First off, Thanks!

      I don’t actually know who the retailers in Australia are. But my general rule is buy the book from whatever retailer you like and that will actually sell it to you. Right now in the US, Amazon won’t sell you the book. That’s the problem.

      • Awesome! And another thing, the illustrations for the cover art are fantastic. I don’t know why but I feel proud cracking some sci-fi open on a train as opposed to hiding in a corner reading some nerd fiction.

  6. I pre-ordered Cibola with my Apple/Publishers ebook price fixing credit (from Barnes and Noble). Strange days indeed.

  7. Wish you were coming to Salt Lake, but nobody comes to Salt Lake. :(

  8. I could still could buy it from Kobo no? http://store.kobobooks.com/en-CA/ebook/cibola-burn-1

    I’ll be heading to East Asia for work for a good part of July and August and was hoping to use any free time I have to read Cibola Burn and The Widow’s House.

  9. Was about to buy several books from amazon including yours, switching over to order from Barnes and noble. Amazon is getting close to an anti trust suit with this….

    When is the next dragons path book out? You left us with quite a cliffhanger.

    • Widow’s House is, I think, slated to hit shelf in August.

      • both books pre-ordered on barnes and noble. I bought a few others also. As a customer it makes no sense for me to buy some on amazon and some on another site. First off its a hassle, second off they all give free shipping if you spend a certain amount of money, so when I buy, I buy several at once.

        Amazon is annoying me as a customer. Their attitude is one of a monopoly. I read their letter to customer and its basically, if you don’t like it go somewhere else. Only a company with monopolistic power can afford to do something like that. B&N would be crazy to issue a letter like that.

  10. Looking forward to reading your new book, but I can only find the hardcover so far, when will there be a paperback?

  11. Hey,

    got the book yesterday. Superstoked! Starting to read it tonight, have to finish “Republic of thieves” first. This series you´ve created is amazing. It was really hard to finish “Abaddon´s gate” back when I thought it was gonna be the last book in the series, and at the same time you of course wanted to know how it all played out. Keep ut the amazing work! Best regards,

    Janne from Sweden

  12. Hello gents:

    I found out about The Expanse Series from this article
    http://io9.com/syfy-is-turning-james-s-a-coreys-books-into-game-of-t-1562411885 and bought “Leviathan Wakes” through Kobo. The book was a wild ride with twists and turns I didn’t see coming. After reading “The Butcher of Anderson Station” I bought “Caliban’s War” and I can’t wait to see where the story goes next.

  13. As I prefer reading off my kindle, any place that offers kindle compatible electronic copies that you are aware of and can point me towards (like Baen Books has)?

  14. Well I canceled my Amazon preorder and since I won’t get to see you guys in person I’ve bought 2 copies through Tattered Cover, I doubt my little cancellation will even be noticed by Amazon but it is a good feeling when I can buy books through independent booksellers.

  15. The problem is that Amazon and Book Depository are pretty much the only way to get English books in Germany without paying a fortune for shipping. So I’ll have to wait it out or hope they do send it within a few days like it happened with another Orbit title this month. The perorder option is avaliable here.

  16. Got my kindle pre-order in last November, still appears as being delivered on time.

    Any chance you guys will ever make it to the East Coast/Boston for signings?

  17. Elliot Bay books in Seattle…I am SO there! Bravo on books one thru three…and for re piquing my interest in sci fi with a story so original! I would love to have all in hardback, tho. Thoughts?

  18. No Texas visit? Come on ppl, everything’s big in Texas, just like Rociente :)

  19. I preordered the audiobook from the Audible/Amazon site the moment I laid eyes on it. Corporate Cannibal Capitalism is dismal- and we all still have to eat. Especially wonderful storytellers! Who come in importance right after farmers- and it is a close call. We do not live by bread alone, but by means of tall tales, true and otherwise. So please buy these exceptionally clever and enjoyable books sooner or later, in any form available.

    Thank you, writers and readers, for your service to the country of great stories.

  20. I know it’s probably not the popular position here, since the authors publish through the publisher in question, but from Amazon’s perspective:

    They aren’t allowed to sell a book without a distribution contract in place, thanks to the distribution model pushed on them by Apple and the major publishers, including Hachette.

    That contract is in negotiation and may not be renewed.

    They should not promise their customers preorders for books that they may not be allowed to sell.

    I love the books, and I’m thankful for the authors of the books, but Amazon is engaging in practices with its own website that will end up reducing prices to me, the consumer, while Hachette has engaged in practices that end up increasing prices to me.

    It may be selfish, but Hachette isn’t exactly on the side of the angels here.

    • Amazon reducing prices to leverage monopoly powers = not great, but how the business world works.

      Amazon reducing prices by cutting their own profit = fine, whatever.

      Amazon reducing prices by cutting what the publishers/authors get for their work = not fine.

      The cost of producing a book isn’t going down. What Amazon is angling to do is kill competition by undercutting them and then cut out any part of the process that is actually making money but Amazon.

      Not cool.

  21. I was wondering why the latest Expanse novel (AKA my #1 full on reading addiction) was suddenly listed as not available on Amazon. Because the last time I’d checked it had been listed as going on sale June 17.
    Then I heard a show on my local NPR station that described the ways that Amazon was playing hardball with Hachette. I opened up my copy of Abaddon and, sure enough, Hachette is your publisher.

    I’m certainly going to get my copy elsewhere! Will it be available in paperback?

    Thanks for all the great stories. I don’t know if you guys are making the world a better place but you’re certainly making my brain a happier place!

    Raelinda

  22. You can pre-order it from Google Books: http://goo.gl/L6vijL

    I like Google Books better than Amazon Kindle anyway.

  23. Do you know if the same person who narrated the first 3 books will be narrating Cibola Burn?

    He had an extremely good way of pulling you into the story.

    • I think there was a changeover, but they don’t really involve me at that level of production. :\

      • First of all, thank you for writing The Expanse. I have enjoyed this series immensely in both written and audio form. It is disappointing that Jefferson Mays is no longer narrating the books. He brought a natural depth to the characters that fit perfectly. Erik Davies’ flat cadence and tone never let you forget that he is merely reading. I want my old Amos back!

        Thanks again.

    • Jefferson Mays really was ideal for The Expanse…and he does not narrate Cibola Burns. The very thought of anyone else’s voice for this story was at first hard to imagine, because I didn’t even want to. I thought maybe I should just buy the whatchamacallit- you know: the thing that is not an audiobook. But then I reconsidered. Perhaps I ought to at least try like the new fellow, if I could. You never know.

      The good news is that the new guy, Erik Davies, has narrated several very highly rated books. I think he might be fine. The real problem is getting over the absence of Jefferson Mays. That takes an act of will, if you have identified with his voice as much as most of us did. So I suggest a short period of mourning, followed by a conscious effort to allow Erik Davies to do his best. Especially since he also narrates The Gods of Risk and The Churn. He has the hardest imaginable act to follow, but in my opinion he does have a nice voice and a decent style all his own. So I think audiobook lovers should give him a chance. Just forgive him before you start, once and for all, for not being Jefferson Mays. Then go from there.

      • I agree. The new narrator is fine on his own but it is always tough to switch mid-series. I would love to know why it happened. If I had to guess, I would wager it has to do with the series’ growing profile — perhaps Mays was unavailable to get the book ready in order to have the audio publish concurrently with print. In the past, there has been a lag of some months between the two.

        • Actually, it’s because a new company has the audio recording rights.

          • Also, Jefferson Mays is a Toni nominee for his performance in a Broadway show- as of June 5, 2014. So he is busy too. I’m bothered by the unfairly disgruntled reviews about the new narrator on Audible. I’ve listened for an hour so far, and Erik Davies is quite OK. As an audiobook fan/atic, I am all too familiar with *bad*- and this is far from it.

            It seems the problem boils down to extreme attachment to Mays, and an unwillingness to adjust to a few relatively minor imperfections. Davies reads more slowly, but the mind can be easily slowed to match it. And while he isn’t the great master of narration that Mays is: *neither is anyone else*. Personally, I think it was a better choice to have a relative unknown than most of the famous narrators, who are too distinctive. Davies basically comes close to matching Mays general tone, if not the perfection of pacing.

            We audiobook folk obviously veer into obsession now and again. But the worst that can happen is that the audience will buy more print and ebooks. No harm done.

            By the way, exactly as you expect–this is a terrific book. Every bit as good as the others. Cheers!

  24. Very excited about the SYFY series and the 6-days-and-counting-release of Cibola Burn (not to mention the August release of Widow’s House). As authors, the James SA Corey team has entertained me for hours at end and I can’t thank you enough. Enjoy your book tour… and accept my cordial invitation to visit New York, but especially Long Island. ;]

  25. You have fans in Florida! I’m looking forward to reading everything in this series. If you ever plan a book-signing visit to the Tampa Bay area, I’ll be here standing in line.

  26. I wonder how long it will be before publishers realize they can sell directly to consumers without Amazon’s overhead cutting into the profits. I know they couldn’t ever undercut Amazon in a meaningful way without undercutting their other outlets, but …

  27. My pre-ordered Amazon.com Kindle purchase came in on the 4th of June – finished reading yesterday. I left you a glowing 5 star review on Amazon… hope it helps!

  28. I wish you guys would come to the UK. I’m just over half way through Abaddon’s Gate, got Cibola Burn preordered at my local Waterstones (UK/Europe book store) and I absolutely cannot wait to get my hands on it. The series is unbelievable, the sheer level of detail you guys have gone into it is just mind-blowing. It’s really inspiring me to work on my own project. Good luck with the rest of the series!!!!

  29. I would also like to add that if you listen to the audio versions of these books that you preview the book before you hit buy. Previous entries were narrated by Jefferson Mays. Cibola burn is narrated by Erik Davies and his narration is, in a word, AWFUL. It’s not enough that the established voices of the characters thus far have been changed. No, Davies has one male and one female voice with no variation. Be ready to be confused when more than two people are in a scene. Combine that with his William Shatner pension to put odd pauses into the text and you are better off reading it yourself with the voices you remember. I really hope subsequent audio entries are given back to Jefferson Mays.

    • Tom’s comment could not be more accurate. The new narrator has completely ruined the audiobook version of Cibola Burn. I bought it without previewing it first and will be returning it to Audible. I was hoping I could get used to Davies’ style of reading, but its just too slow and stilted. And since the story has been top notch as usual, I wan’t to finish this novel the old fashioned way.

      Thanks to the authors for this post. I have never been so excited for the release of a novel, and Ty and Daniel have not disappointed. I want to support them the best I can, so I’ll be buying the print version from one of the retailers listed above.

    • I hate to agree, but I do, wholeheartedly. Jefferson Mays turned unique characters on the page into flesh and blood with his outstanding voice work. Davies does not do Mays’ earlier work justice. I know it is unfair to also complain that I prefer the voices for the characters I remember, but it cannot be helped. Switching narrators is often jarring, but here, it feels like the characters in book 4 are different people altogether.

      I do not know what I am going to do now. I really wanted to have book 4 in audio book for my commute to and from work but cannot purchase it as is. Is there any hope that another release might occur with Mays narrating? I doubt it but I needed to ask. Perhaps if enough people express interest in this…

      • I wrote an Audible review: “Bookwreck: How to Sink a Stellar Story”
        Because I tried my best to like the audiobook, then I tried to stand it, and then I tried to get the maddening sound of the narrator out of my poor shuddering head.

        At a certain point on the pain scale it is better to stop trying, and prosecute one’s case vigorously in the court of public opinion. Because whoever was responsible for this grotesque and inexcusable error in judgment, hidden though they are, will certainly get the drift.
        And yes, if enough people complain, Audible will sometimes record a book again with a decent narrator.

        I usually leave the outraged criticism in these matters to others. But not this time. Like many readers here, I’ve developed a personal and proprietary interest in this series. No one is allowed to chop up my beloved characters into gibbering little pieces and pretend they didn’t.

  30. What happened to Jefferson Mays?

    Erik Davies ruined this story. Ruined it. …

  31. Is there any way for us to purchase a paperback copy of Cibola? I’m a little “particular” (OCD) about my book collection, and have paperback of the first three so I’d like them to match….LOVE the series!!

  32. I found it very touching (and so quick I might add) to see the book dedicated to Elmore Leonard and Jay Lake, who was with us only a few weeks ago. May their stories live on!

    By the way…nice to see this in a hardcover release. And I dig the highlighter orange color on the inside flaps, which can probably been seen from space!

  33. Where can I purchase a dirst edition of the OrbitUK edition? This came out a few weeks before the American edition.

    Will Daniel and TY be planning to come to New York City in the near future?

  34. Just picked up Cibola Burn at my local B&N. I’m looking forward to reading it, but who in the hell decided that that retina-ripping orange was a good idea? Makes it almost impossible to read the dustjacket flaps.

    I’m sorry that you guys are caught up in this Amazon/Hachette madness. When I picked up your book, I also picked up the Martin/Dozois anthology Rogues, and an idle thought struck me. George isn’t a Hachette author, but I wondered if their author list had any 500-pound gorillas that Amazon wouldn’t want to screw around. They have a good selection of popular writers, but the only one I could think of that might be too popular to screw with would be James Patterson. So I’m curious whether Amazon is making certain exceptions on the sly.

  35. Had no idea there were any issues with Amazon at all. I pre-ordered as soon as I saw it listed there. Actually just got my confirmation email from them a couple of days ago, and my copy of Cibola Burn is supposed to finally get to me this Thursday. Hope it’s not bogus. Hope more that all the convoluted contract mess gets sorted out so this won’t be an issue for you guys and future books. Just can’t get enough. :)

    • Book arrived today. Perhaps this means Amazon worked everything out with Hachette? For the benefit of all involved, I hope so.

      So who made the executive decision to have white text on the neon orange inside book covers? :) I’m going to have to avoid those to keep my head from spinning. lol.

  36. Thank you for taking the time to see your fans at the Elliot Bay Bookstore in Seattle. I enjoyed hearing about your processes, and the thoughts that went into The Expanse.

    And good luck on the next phase of the LA experience.

    Cheers!
    Christopher Doll

  37. Hi,
    I have really enjoyed the audio version of all the expanse novels. They have become a commuting ritual for me. Thank you for writing them. That being said; the narration on Cibola Burn is lacking in all qualities that made Jefferson Mays’ version so enjoyable. I was wondering if you know of any plans to re-record a new version with a different author. I have purchased the print version and mimic Jefferson’s narration in my head while reading. This is sufficient, albeit unsafe while driving :)

  38. Guys -

    just a quick note to let you know how much I enjoyed the new book. Really well done. I think I enjoyed this one almost as much as Leviathan Wakes. The Expanse is a fantastic series.

    Looking forward to the next novella and, of course, the next full novel (2015 hopefully).

    Many thanks,

    Chris

  39. Is there an ETA for a paperback edition of Cibola Burn? Really looking forward to a new Expanse novel!

  40. I hope you will consider getting your agents to do SOMETHING about the incompetent narration Audible has for Cibola. Davies did an incredibly bad job, and the negative reviews at Audible consistently echo the same “affectless” “artless” “****poor” vocalization. It is a crime to see hack work at that level do real harm to your work.

    Mays’ narration voice has become my internal voice (I listened Audible version for to the first two volumes, and read the 3rd), BUT it took quite a few chapters of reading Cibola to get the unbelievably bad voice of Davies out of my head. Really…. this young obscure actor is clueless and apparently talentless.

    You work creates image spaces, you invent scenarios with which your reader’s interact… and do so with wit, and a touch of humor. HOW CAN YOU LET THAT process be so ruined by amateur narration?

    Cynically, I must ask is the money proposition from Audible SO trivial, and the number of “readers” so low that it doesn’t matter to you? I see with trepidation that SyFy (or whatever it is this week) is going give the series a whirl… that contract I am sure will cover a few mortgage payments, and I pray they don’t rape the book and its imaginings.

    I have author clients who are SO particular about their work and its presentation on the websites I build for them. Please, go take a look at the Audible reviews again!!! If it were my intellectual property my next call would be my lawyer, then I would tear my agent a new one for letting this happen on his/her watch.

    • You and I have very different visions of how this works, because it seems to me that you have more actual power on the issue than I do at this point.

      The fact of the matter is, we sold those rights. We don’t own them anymore. Having sold them doesn’t give us any leverage on how the people who bought them run their company. The influence we have at this point is whether or not we choose to sell to them again. The fact of the matter is audio rights are tied up through book 9. Short of threatening to sue — a suit we would absolutely lose, btw — there’s no reason besides courtesy for those folks to take our opinions into account.

      You, on the other hand, are in a position where the money — and the power — are originating in you. You matter to them. The feedback from readers/listeners/consumers is something that the publishers and audiobook folks pay a *lot* of attention to. The comments on the audiobook site and letters to the company from dissatisfied consumers carry much more weight than anything I can do at this point. And by all means, do. If you can give your power and voice to making the next product better, it will improve things for *everyone*.

      • Hi Daniel: I love the books of The Expanse series. These books are works of art and great fun, great science fiction and great literature. I am so very pleased to find this venue as well as this excuse for letting you know how much I sincerely appreciate this thing that you made, are still making! OTOH I am in truth a bit shy and a little hesitant to admit what a close personal relationship I have with each member of the crew as well as with many other characters in the book linked with the crew in various ways, Fred being one random if extremely sublime example.

        The hue and cry resulting from the switch of narrators this deep into the series could not have been unexpected. This is exactly analogous to beginning the next season of Game of Thrones with all new actors in every single role, since this is exactly what occurs in this new audiobook — every single character suddenly is speaking with the wrong voice.

        So I would rather not pan the new reader and instead blame all of the hue as well as all of the cry simply on The Switch, and then ask what can be done about it at this stage. I do strongly feel that something should be done about it. This something is get the established narrator of The Expanse series back to continue as the reader of the new book, the fourth novel in the series (the sixth of seven stories counting also the novellas)

        There are many examples of audiobooks in Audible.com that are available with choices between two or more narrators, which give reader-listeners a clear albeit often not-so-simple choice to spend their money or a credit on the book in question with the narrator of their choosing. It is crucial to note that this directly addresses the company’s central issues: (1.) to make money and (2.) to not lose money.

        To achieve this happy outcome I am all for writing reviews and letters and very willing to do my part. But I especially like the idea of turning to crowd-sourcing such as KickStarter to republish the new audiobook with the narrator of all of the previous audiobooks. If raising money to give to the company or more directly to Mr. Jefferson Mays would lead to a happy solution to the problem, then I am ALL IN with open wallet, as many others would be I am quite certain. But a secondary function could be the more important reason for starting a crowd-sourcing — namely that this results in a supremely visible polling booth where those who feel strongly about these books and these characters can have their votes regarding the continuity of narration clearly seen and meticulously counted simply through the amount of money collected and even more significantly also the simple, straight count of the number of contributions. Without a doubt this will be seen and noted by the company and not inconceivably acted upon! And wouldn’t that be a fine thing!

  41. When will the paperback be released?

  42. I too am wondering when the paperback will be released so I can find out if Cibola Burn is related to a bad Taco Bell reaction or not! Hurry – I need my next Expanse fix!

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