Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 12 November 2019

No sign of publication date for The Winds of Winter

Plus: new novel about Palestinian disapora Salt Houses eagerly awaites and Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone special editions for twentieth anniversary.
Author George R R Martin. Lucas Jackson / Reuters
Author George R R Martin. Lucas Jackson / Reuters

Game of Swords

Still eagerly awaiting news of The Winds of Winter, the long-delayed next book in George R R Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series? Well, you will have to hold on a little longer, as there is still no sign of a publication date. But there will definitely be new work in print from the 68-year-old fantasy author this year, after he revealed on his blog that he has written a new short story set in Westeros. The Sons of the Dragon is set 250 years before the start of the main Game of Thrones saga, and explores the rule of the second and third Targaryen kings, Aenys I and Maegor the Cruel. The story will be published on October 10 in an anthology called The Book of Swords, also featuring writing by Robin Hobb, Ken Liu, Garth Nix and Scott Lynch to “celebrate fantasy’s golden age of sword and sorcery”, according to its Amazon description.

House and home

One of the novels publishers Penguin Random House are most excited about this year is the debut from Palestinian-American Hala Alyan. In Salt Houses, the young Brooklyn resident, an award-winning poet, focuses on a family that moves from Palestine to Kuwait, Jordan, Lebanon and finally the United States. It looks like it could be an intriguing insight into the Palestinian diaspora, beginning in the period immediately preceding the Six-Day War in 1967, and continuing to the present day. You would expect Alyan, as a clinical psychologist, to be well placed to get inside the heads of her characters as they grapple with the notion of “home”. The book is due out in May.

Potter… more

Here is something to make you feel just a little bit more ancient: come June, it will be 20 years since the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, author J K Rowing’s book that kicked off the Harry Potter phenomenon. Unsurprisingly, Bloomsbury are planning to celebrate the birth of the all-conquering seven-book series – which is estimated to have sold more than 450million copies worldwide – with four new editions of the book with fresh covers themed to match each of the four Hogwarts houses: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Hufflepuff and Ravenclaw. They will also contain new illustrations and facts about the famous school of wizardry. There will also be an anniversary exhibition at the British Library, and plenty of additional celebratory events are said to be in the planning stage

Updated: February 7, 2017 04:00 AM