Under Heaven

Bright Weavings: The Worlds of Guy Gavriel Kay – Under Heaven

canadian cover of YsabelGGK’s most recent book is Ysabel. To the right is the Canadian cover. To see the American cover as well, click through to the art gallery.

Order on Amazon.ca here
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Order on Amazon.uk here

I’m very happy to announce GGK’s ‘Ysabel journal’, on the forums of the website. This is similar to the Last Light of the Sun Tour journal that GGK did when his last book was published, but starts earlier in the process than that one did; it is added to less frequently, but includes GGK’s observations and experiences about the whole process of the run up to publication, as well as after publication. Read it here. The most recent entries are at the top of the page, as opposed to the bottom.

We have an introduction and an extract, and more! The introduction does contain spoilers, but not severe ones; it doesn’t give away any huge plot points but it is a thorough introduction to what the book is going to be about. So if you don’t want to read it all, I’m going to put a couple paragraphs here, and then link to the rest, and you can choose whether or not to click on the link.

“Everyone comes from somewhere else.”

Provence, in the south of France, is a part of the world that has been—and continues to be—called a paradise. But one of the lessons that history teaches is that paradise is coveted and fought over. Successive waves of invaders have claimed—or tried to claim—those vineyards, rivers, olive groves, and hills.

In Guy Gavriel Kay’s new novel, Ysabel, this duality—of exquisite beauty and violent history—is explored in a work that marks a departure from Kay’s historical fantasies set in various analogues of the past.

Ysabel takes place in the world of today: in a modern springtime, in and around the celebrated city of Aix-en-Provence near Marseilles. Dangerous, mythic figures from the Celtic and Roman conflicts of the past erupt into the present, claiming and changing lives.

The protagonist is Ned Marriner, the fifteen year-old son of a well-known photographer. Ned has accompanied his father, Edward Marriner, and a team of assistants to Provence for a six week “shoot.”

To read the rest of the introduction, click here.

And to read the prologue, click here!

GGK prepared, on request, a ‘Letter to the Reader’ to go out with early copies of Ysabel to the media, talking a little of how he came to write the book. Here it is, for you to read!

We also have a fascinating interview with GGK taken from the official Penguin Ysabel website, that discusses the process of his historical reserach for Ysabel. This does have spoilers in terms of broader themes of history and location, but not at all in terms of story or plot – the spoilerphobic need not be concerned with this one.

The forthcoming American paperback edition of Ysabel will include a Reader’s Guide (which Penguin Canada have up on their website, rather than in the book itself). To see and ponder the questions posed, click here.

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