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John Meaney

John MeaneyJohn Meaney has been short-listed three times for the British Science Fiction Award. He has a degree in physics and computer science and holds a black belt in Shotokan karate. He lives with his wife in Kent, England. Learn about his scifi novels at John Meaney’s website.

Click here for more stories by John Meaney.

Bone Song: Gritty futuristic noir with gothic fantasy

Bone Song by John Meaney

British author John Meaney is primarily known as a writer of hard science fiction. In his latest offering however, he changes tack a bit and delivers a novel in Bone Song that is described as blending “gritty futuristic noir with gothic fantasy.” A fairly accurate description, although personally I would categorize the book as urban fantasy because the backdrop is definitely present day, the main character is a police lieutenant, and the story is driven by a murder investigation that features plenty of familiar police procedural elements and subplots like a romance, a traitor, and obvious red herrings, not to mention the supernatural aspects.

But, Bone Song is not just your average urban fantasy novel right. The setting is actually quite unique. On the surface, Tristopolis may seem like any normal mega-city with its police force, hospitals, subways, t... Read More

Black Blood: In the mood for something different?

Black Blood by John Meaney

Creatively, I loved John Meaney’s Bone Song, especially the highly imaginative world. At the same time though, I was disappointed by the shallow characters, a formulaic plot, and the disjointed narrative. Because of the uneven experience, I was a bit apprehensive about reading the sequel, but my curiosity in knowing how the story continued prevailed. Fortunately, despite a few hiccups, Black Blood turned out to be an overall much stronger and much more enjoyable effort.

Like its predecessor, the best thing about Black Blood is the incredibly inventive world which blends the paranormal with technology and the familiar for a deliciously unique setting. If you read Bone Song, then you should already be familiar with the deathwolves, necrofusion power reactors, Bone Listeners, sentient furniture and vehi... Read More

The New Space Opera 2: All-New Tales of Science Fiction Adventure

The New Space Opera 2: All-New Tales of Science Fiction Adventure edited by Gardner Dozois & Jonathan Strahan

The New Space Opera 2: All-New Tales of Science Fiction Adventure is, as its name implies, the second of Gardner Dozois and Jonathan Strahan’s themed anthologies attempting to put a modern spin on space opera, a subgenre of science fiction which causes many of us to think of big metal spaceships crewed by handsome blaster-wielding men who protect us from evil aliens that want to destroy the Earth, or at least steal it’s shrieking scantily clad women. We laugh at these old stories now — the way they ignore the vacuum of space and the effects of relativity, the way their aliens seem a lot less alien than they should, and the way that they rarely seem to display the variety in specie... Read More

More speculative fiction from John Meaney

Nulapeiron — (2000-2005) Publisher: Centuries of self-imposed isolation have transformed Nulapeiron into a world unlike any other — a world of vast subterranean cities maintained by extraordinary organic technologies. For the majority of its peoples, however such wonders have little meaning. Denied their democratic rights and restricted to the impoverished lower levels, they are subjected to the brutal law of the Logic Lords and the Oracles, supra-human beings whose ability to truecast the future maintains the status quo. But all this is about to change. In a crowded marketplace a mysterious, beautiful woman is brutally cut down by a militia squad’s graser fire. Amongst the horrified onlookers is young Tom Corcorigan. He recognizes her. Only the previous day she had presented him with a small, seemingly insignificant info-crystal. And only now, as the fire in the dying stranger’s obsidian eyes fades, does he comprehend who — or what — she really was: a figure from legend, one of the fabled Pilots. What Tom has still to discover is that his crystal holds the key to understanding mu-space, and so to freedom itself. He doesn’t know it yet, but he has been given a destiny to fulfill — nothing less than the rewriting of his future, and that of his world. Spectacularly staged, thrillingly written and set in a visionary future, Paradox places John Meaney at the forefront of science fiction in this new century.

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Ragnarok — (2010-2014) Publisher: 600 years from now on the world of Fulgor Roger Blackstone, son of two Pilots (long-time alien spies, masquerading as ordinary humans) aches to see the mythical Pilot’s city of Labyrinth, in the fractal ur-continuum of mu-space. In 8th century Norseland, a young carl called Wulf kills a man, watched by a mysterious warrior who bears the mark of Loki the Trickster God. In 1920s Zurich, Gavriela Silberstein enters the long, baroque central hallway of the Eidgenossische Technische Hochschule where Einstein so recently studied. And on a nameless world, not knowing his human heritage, a silver-skinned youth tries to snatch back an Idea – but it floats away on gentle magnetic currents. There are others across the ages, all with three things in common: they glimpse shards of darkness moving at the edge of their vision; they hear echoes of a dark, disturbing musical chord; and they will dream of joining a group called the Ragnarok Council. ABSORPTION is the first novel of RAGNAROK, a new space opera trilogy of high-tech space warfare, unitary intelligences made up of millions of minds, the bizarre physics of dark energy, quantum mechanics and a mindblowing rationale for Norse mythology.

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John Meaney, To Hold InfinityTo Hold Infinity — (1998) Publisher: Devastated by her husband’s death, Earth-based biologist Yoshiko Sunadomari journeys to the paradise world of Fulgar to see her estranged son in the hope of bridging the gulf between them. But Tetsuo is in trouble. His expertise in mu-space technology and family links with the mysterious Pilots have ensured his survival — so far. Now he’s in way over his head — unwittingly caught up in a conspiracy of illegal tech-trafficking and corruption, and in the sinister machinations of one of Fulgar’s ruling elite: the charismatic Luculentus, Rafael Garcia de la Vega. When his home is attacked, Tetsuo flees to the planet’s unterraformed wastes, home to society’s outcasts and eco-terrorists. So Yoshiko arrives on Fulgar to discover Tetsuo gone…and wanted for murder. Ill at ease in this strange, stratified new world seething with social and political unrest but desperate to find her son and clear his name, she embarks on a course of action that will bring her face to face with the awesome, malevolent mind of Rafael.

John Meaney New JerusalemNew Jerusalem — (2010) Publisher: Half-American, half-English and belonging nowhere, David Wolf is an atheist Jewish spy, physicist and killer, driven by his need for life on the edge, drawn to the deadly clandestine world. The year is 1962, and this is the independent Jewish state founded after World War 2 — inside the borders of West Germany and Berlin. With the Middle East at peace, the western world faces both Soviet and neo-Nazi terrorist threats. Wolf’s hunt takes him through a different Germany, an oppressive Soviet Union and finally to New York, confronting enemies of the mind and physical mass destruction.