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Serial Box

January 22, 2016

Serial Box is a new form pf publishing that purports to take the concept of a television season and bring it to the book world. The serials are created by an author and then co-written with a team, much like a writers room for a tv show. The episodes come out weekly and the season has a definite end in sight. You can subscribe to a whole serial or just shop a la carte.
indexingThe model is not entirely new. Kindle serials have been doing this, with Indexing by Seanan McGuire being a delightful example. And, of course, Charles Dickens’ works, along with those of many other writers, were originally released serially in newspapers or periodicles. The digital age has opened up the option to bring serials back in a very big way. The Serial Box episodes can stand alone, but work better in the network of the whole season. And, which is delightful to me, they are available as print or audio from the start!

Currently, there are two serials running with a new one due to start in a few days.
tremontainetremontaineTremontaine is a prequel to Ellen Kushner’s Swordspoint, which is one of my favorite books ever. We return to Riverside, a fantasy world where the only thing more dangerous than the sword fights are the conversations. The pilot is available for free, so there’s nothing stopping you from picking it up. Also, the cover art by Kathleen Jennings is beautiful!

bookburners_serial_cover
Book Burners 
was created by Max Gladstone and can be summed up quickly as Warehouse 13 meets Jim Hines’s Libriomancer. The tagline is “Some books have teeth.”
The slightly more expanded premise is that dangerous magic is trapped in certain books. Very few people survive an encounter with these books, but one of the lucky few is Sal. She ends up joining a group of anti-magic operatives who work for the Vatican in an effort to find and contain the books before anything worse happens.

spy
The Witch Who Came In From the Cold
is the next story to get started. It debuts on January 27. It was created by Lindsay Smith and Max Gladstone. It sounds like it’s going to be a Cold War spy novel with magic. So, that sounds awesome. And it’s set in Prague, which is a beautiful city. I’ve already subscribed and I can’t wait for it to get started.

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