Swiftly

Swiftly

5.0 4
by Adam Roberts
     
 

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From the Land of Lilliput to Jupiter Magnified In 2000, British author Adam Roberts published his first SF novel, Salt, to wide acclaim. Locus magazine described Salt as "... in the same vein as Frank Herbert's Dune." And in 2001, the beginning of a new millennium, Salt was named a finalist for the prestigious Arthur C. Clarke Award for best science fiction novel

Overview

From the Land of Lilliput to Jupiter Magnified In 2000, British author Adam Roberts published his first SF novel, Salt, to wide acclaim. Locus magazine described Salt as "... in the same vein as Frank Herbert's Dune." And in 2001, the beginning of a new millennium, Salt was named a finalist for the prestigious Arthur C. Clarke Award for best science fiction novel of the year. Now, five SF novels later, Adam Roberts presents us with Swiftly, his first short fiction collection. These twelve handpicked tales - eight published here for the first time - showcase Roberts's authorial expertise at interweaving world-building with style, tone, and image. Roberts, whom award-winning author Jon Courtenay Grimwood calls "the king of high concept," is the rare hard-sf writer who emphasizes character over construct. In "Swiftly," the title story to this collection, mid-1840s Europe is at the height of its manufacturing prowess, due in large part to the finely honed skills of the enslaved Lilliputian-like people. But the French Army threatens the English shore, and one British citizen dares to assist the French in order to free the enslaved.

Skyhorse Publishing, under our Night Shade and Talos imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of titles for readers interested in science fiction (space opera, time travel, hard SF, alien invasion, near-future dystopia), fantasy (grimdark, sword and sorcery, contemporary urban fantasy, steampunk, alternative history), and horror (zombies, vampires, and the occult and supernatural), and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller, a national bestseller, or a Hugo or Nebula award-winner, we are committed to publishing quality books from a diverse group of authors.

Editorial Reviews

bn.com
The Barnes & Noble Review
A bicycle race to the moon, invisible -- and blind -- assassins, a sojourn in heaven, worldwide mass hallucinations at the end of the world, and an homage to Jonathan Swift are all included in University of London professor Adam Roberts's collection of short stories. The title story, "Swiftly," and "Eleanor" are both set in a 19th-century England inhabited by diminutive Lilliputians and giant Brobdingnagians from Jonathan Swift's classic Gulliver's Travels. In "Swiftly," sympathizer Abraham Bates is desperately trying to free thousands of Lilliputians and Brobdingnagians from slavery in English factories and farms. After a war begins with France over the rights of the minuscule and super-sized Pacificans, Bates is approached with a quick way to end the potentially long and bloody war -- but it means he will be a traitor to his country. "Eleanor" focuses on the unhappy wife of an English factory owner. Dissatisfied with her marriage, Eleanor visits her husband late at night at his factory only to find him drunk and passed out at his desk. When she sets free his minions of enslaved Lilliputians, they take care of her marital problem once and for all.

In "Dantesque," Avis spends millennia climbing from the crowded depths of Hell into the serene realm of Heaven only to find it almost empty. Is Paradise too boring for humanity's twisted souls? Fans of Roberts's novels (Salt, On, Stone, et al.) will thoroughly enjoy this collection of short fiction, which is as diverse as it is cerebral. Paul Goat Allen

Gerald Jonas
… in a story, entitled ''Eleanor,'' Roberts shows where his true strength lies. Returning to the preinvasion England of the first tale, he focuses on the courtship and marriage between a slave-owning industrialist and a beautiful 16-year-old girl of scant means. By intertwining the personal tragedy of this mismatched couple with the tragic situation of the enslaved Lilliputians, Roberts redeems the promise of ''Swiftly'' in full. Instead of a surprise ending, we are left with a meditation on love and freedom and betrayal that is all the more powerful for reasserting conventional values in such an unconventional setting.
The New York Times
The Times
Darkly satirical . . . a dystopian vision in the tradition of Swift, Orwell, and Atwood.
Locus
A brilliant burlesque conceit, and Roberts exploits it in bravura fashion.
From the Publisher

"The king of high concept."  —The Guardian

"A brilliant burlesque conceit, and Roberts exploits it in bravura fashion."  — Locus

"An endlessly inventive writer . . . one of our most intelligent and versatile authors."  —SFRevu

"Darkly satirical . . . a dystopian vision in the tradition of Swift, Orwell, and Atwood."  —The Times

"A worthy science fictional successor to Swift's indispensable masterwork... equal parts adventure story and social commentary. Its philosophy is Swift's, but its success is all Roberts's own."  —Strange Horizons

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780575075894
Publisher:
Gollancz, Victor Limited
Publication date:
03/20/2008
Pages:
370
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.50(h) x 1.40(d)

Meet the Author

Adam Roberts is a novelist whose titles include Salt and Gradisil. His work has been nominated for the Arthur C. Clarke Award and the Philip K. Dick Award. He also writes parodies, including Doctor Whom: E.T. Shoots and Leaves, The Sellamillion, and The Va Dinci Cod.

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Swiftly 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Walks in with bella. Starts dancing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Theres a gymnastics floor too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Sweeps the dance floor and dusts everything so it looks nice and pretty