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

Killing Rites Has Arrived

by Daniel Abraham

The Black Sun's Daughter

The Black Sun's Daughter


So whatcha doing Tuesday the 22nd?

by Daniel Abraham

For the record, I'm only half of James SA Corey


In which I am a geek. . .

by Ty Franck

So, Leviathan Wakes has gotten a lot of very flattering press.  A starred Publisher’s Weekly review, great reviews in Kirkus, and Locus, and the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the London Financial Times, and about a jillion blogs.  It’s all sort of surreal when I think about it.

But nothing made me squeal like the mention I got today over at my favorite webcomic, Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal.

If you aren’t already a fan, what the hell is wrong with you?  Go become one!


Best and Near Best of 2011? Cool!

by Daniel Abraham

Amazon is putting James SA Corey’s Leviathan Wakes among its Top Ten SF & Fantasy titles of 2011 along with books like A Dance with Dragons, Embassytown, and Among Others.

Publisher’s Weekly’s Genreville — in addition to celebrating Maureen McHugh’s earthshakingly cool short fiction — gave Daniel Abraham’s Dragon’s Path an honorable mention among the Best Books of 2011 (and incidentally did some truly lovely troll management in the comments).

(Also MLN Hanover’s new book Killing Rites comes out this month.  If you’re into it, there’s a giveaway of the whole first four-pack of The Black Sun’s Daughter at Only the Best.)

So, that’s pretty cool.




Goodreads Reader’s Choice Awards

by Ty Franck

Leviathan Wakes is up for one.  Vote, if the mood strikes.  If we win, Daniel will pose nude for a series  of tastefully erotic photos.

You can vote here.


My Wife Proves Her Sincerity

by Daniel Abraham

[EDIT:  Well, we made it to 5,000.  The widget’s a little slow updating, but someone came and made it rain.  So Kat’s shaving her head on the 4th.  Her eyebrows remain safe.  For now.]

Remember that post I did a while back about Rachel, the lady who’s trying to get to Sweden to get a breakthrough surgery to save her life?  Well, a few things have happened, and she’s gotten to the point where she’s actually really close to getting it done.  They need a little more to support them while they’re actually out of the country.  Meaning it’s push time for fundraising.

Including, apparently, my Darling Wife shaving her head.  If she can get $5000 pledged, she’ll shave her head.  If she can get $10,000, she’ll do the eyebrows too.  For $20,000, she’ll think about shaving her legs, but no promises.

Thus does she prove her sincerity.   Me?  I put in for $100 for something I’m not at all certain I want.  That’s how I prove mine.


Unclean Spirits Special Promotion

by Daniel Abraham

$3.99. Seriously, $3.99. But only for a few more week...

So if you’re wondering what I think about the strange new genre we’re all calling Urban Fantasy, your friends and mine at Pocket are saying the first one is, if not strictly free, at least seriously discounted.

Seriously, there’s a special offer on between now and November 14th that lets you pick up the ebook version of Unclean Spirits (and actually a metric assload of other fine titles) for $3.99.  Take a look.

And if you’d like to take a look at some of MLN’s short fiction, you’ve got some options too.  The most recent is the newly minted “The Difference Between a Puzzle and a Mystery” in the Down These Strange Streets anthology.  My personal favorite — Hurt Me — just came out in a couple of places.  The new mass market paperback of Songs of Love and Death and also The Year’s Best Dark fantasy & Horror 2011.

All of which makes it a great lead-up to the fourth — and IMHO best — of the Black Sun’s Daughter.  Killing Rites will be coming out in about a month.


Daniel, Interviewed about The Dragon’s Path

by Daniel Abraham

Helen: Do you agree that it’s fair to describe The Dagger’s Path as classic epic fantasy, with elements such as a medieval world, the legacy of a long ago past reawakening, a journey—the title reference to dragons even! What drew you to this very traditional, storytelling form?


Daniel: The first epic fantasy series I wrote – The Long Price Quartet – was built to be unlike anything else I’d seen in the genre. A different setting, an unfamiliar structure, and a story that wasn’t the usual at all. I’m very pleased with how those books came out. And having been there, I wanted to come back to the things that are the core strengths of epic fantasy and see how the lessons I learned out there on the borders of the genre could apply to those issues and concerns. That sounds a little pretentious now that I say it out loud. I was drawn to it because it’s what made me fall in love with the genre as a reader, and I wanted to come home to that.

Check out the rest.


Butchery Expanse Style

by Ty Franck


A new short story in the Expanse universe dropped today, “The Butcher of Anderson Station.”  For those what wants more Fred Johnson or Anderson Dawes backstory.  Or for them what likes military Sci Fi.  Or for those with a new e-reader and not enough stuff stored on it.

You can check it out at Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Reading this story is guaranteed to change your life forever.*


*Warning: this does not constitute a legal guarantee


Rachel Phillips

by Daniel Abraham

I’m about to break a rule.

So yesterday, I spent part of my day working up a draft press release for something called Help Rachel Breathe.  I don’t know Rachel or Steven Phillips.  They’re religious, I’m not.  She’s a former professional ballerina, I’m essentially dance-blind.  There are a lot of people in the world who are in trouble.  But much as I chose not to care about Charlie Sheen, I’ve chosen to care about Rachel.

Rachel Phillips

I don’t talk about my family on this blog.  I don’t talk about my personal life.  It’s a boundaries thing, and it’s a rule I feel comfortable with most of the time.  I’m making an exception here.  The thing that’s killing Rachel is called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.  It’s a problem with how her body builds connective tissue, and because of the way it’s expressing in her, her trachea’s collapsing.  There are a bunch of other ways that Ehlers-Danlos can present.  Some folks, their joints spontaneously dislocate.  Some folks scar badly from even very minor injuries.  Some people, their heart valves blow out.

For my wife, it presented as a particularly vicious gastric problem.  Basically, the bits of her esophagus that keep the food and acid in your gut didn’t work so well.  If she got a bad cough, it forced stomach acid out onto her vocal cords, which made her cough, and before long we were in the ER.  After the Darling Child showed up, things got worse.  For about a year and a half, my wife couldn’t eat without feeling profoundly ill.  She couldn’t eat breakfast or lunch because she’d be too sick to work, so she made it through the day on a witch’s brew of Ensure, esspresso, chocolate syrup and ice, then came home for a small, healthy meal and sat on the couch in misery until bedtime.  She dropped almost 40 pounds that she didn’t have to lose.  The gastroenterologists at the hospital where she works misdiagnosed what was going on — we didn’t know then that Ehlers-Danlos runs in her family.  We wound up at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, where a doctor named Michael Camilleri essentially saved her.  But for about a year, I was watching my three-year-old daughter watch her mother starve to death, and I couldn’t stop it.  It’s possible that my kid has it too.  If she does, we don’t have any way to know how it’ll present in her.

Ehlers-Danlos and things like it aren’t fatal.  That’s a fiction.  Rachel isn’t dying of Ehlers-Danlos, she’s dying of a collapsed trachea.  My wife wouldn’t have died of Ehlers-Danlos.  She’d have died of some other thing brought on by malnutrition.  But we got lucky.

Honestly, I don’t make Rachel’s chances as great.  The surgery she’s looking at has been done 11 times before, with ten successes and one that died from complications.  That’s actually pretty good odds.  But she can’t get it done in the US because it involves harvesting her own stem cells, and we don’t do that here.  Insurance also won’t help with it.  Getting her to Sweden and getting the money to cover it look bad to me unless someone with really deep pockets is moved to write a really big check or thousands of people decide it’s a better use of $10 than the morning latte and muffin.  I’m doing what I can.  A lot of other folks are taking on the burden.  We’re trying.  There’s not a lot of time, and it is a lot of money.

But she may get lucky too.  I hope she does.

If you feel the urge, go read about what Rachel’s up against.  Throw a couple bucks her way if you’ve got ’em to spare.  Tell your friends about it.  Tweet, post, talk about it over coffee at the office.  Whatever.

If you don’t, I get that too. There’s a lot of tragedy in the world, and we could all bankrupt ourselves trying to fix it. We all have to pick our battles, and if this isn’t yours, it isn’t yours.

It is mine, though. Doomed or not.

EDIT:  My Darling Wife is doing a fundraising gig for Rachel which makes it easier to both get funds to Rachel and also significantly alter my immediate aesthetic experiences in the morning.