Sunday, August 16, 2009

SF Preview – “Chasing the Dragon” by Justina Robson

Chasing the Dragon is the fourth book in the Quantum Gravity series by Justina Robson. The series is one of those delightful hybrids, set in the future with a solid science fiction foundation but blended with parallel worlds containing demons, fairies, vampires and more. Lila Black the central character is half cyborg. I’ve read the first three books in the series, Keeping It Real (2006), Selling Out (2007), and Going Under (2008).

If you’d like to add some different spice to your urban fantasy reading you might like this series. As the blurb below says – “Chasing the Dragon is bright, fast moving and accessible SF that mixes in fantasy and a cool cult-lit sensibility to create a series that will appeal to all fans of Laurell K. Hamilton and Peter Hamilton alike.” The terrific covers strike a note not dissimilar to a lot of UF books – Jennifer Rardin’s Jaz Parks series comes to mind.

The book releases August 25. You can read more about Justina Robson on her website or at her Musapaloosa blog.

Justina Robson is the author of Keeping It Real, Selling Out, and Going Under (Books 1-3 of the Quantum Gravity series). Her first novel, Silver Screen, published in August 1999 in the UK and in 2005 by Pyr, was short-listed for the Arthur C. Clarke Award and the BSFA Award, and is currently nominated for the Philip K. Dick award. Her second novel, Mappa Mundi, together with Silver Screen, won the Writer's Bursary 2000 and was also short-listed for the Arthur C. Clarke Award in 2001. A third novel, Natural History, a far future novel, placed second in the 2004 John W. Campbell Award and was short-listed for the Best Novel of 2003 in the British Science Fiction Association Awards and the Philip K. Dick Award. A fourth novel, Living Next Door to the God of Love, was a finalist for the BSFA Award.

Lila Black returns in the fourth volume of high-octane, high-magic, high-tech adventures.

Ever since the Quantum Bomb of 2015 things have been different; the dimensions have fused and suddenly our world is accessible to elves, demons, ghosts and elementals and their worlds are open to us. Things have been different for Special Agent Lila Black too: tortured and magic-scarred by elves, rebuilt by humans into a half-robot, part-AI, nuclear-fueled walking arsenal, married to a demon and in love with a recently-deceased elf. It was confusing enough before she was catapulted fifty years into her own future.

Returning to the life of a guns-blazing secret agent, Lila finds herself having inherited all of her former boss's old offices and whatever mysteries they contain, as the elf has done a runner some fifty years previously. Appointed head of the new android division, she can see all too clearly what lies in store for her if the growth of the alien technologies in her cyborg body continue unchecked.

But there are more immediate concerns. Like resurrecting her lover, Zal. And her husband, the demon Teazle, is embroiled in a fatal plot in Demonia, and her magic sword is making itself happy as a pen whose writing has the power to affect other worlds. The world is off its rocker and most everyone is terrified of faeries.

And all the while, she hears the voices of the machine material projections of an immaterial form, The Signal. The Signal talks constantly if only she knew what it meant.

Chasing the Dragon is bright, fast moving and accessible SF that mixes in fantasy and a cool cult-lit sensibility to create a series that will appeal to all fans of Laurell K. Hamilton and Peter Hamilton alike.


  1. I haven't read anything by Justina Robson yet but this series sounds interesting... will be looking it up for possible future read...

  2. Doug,

    Another author I'm not familiar with - thanks for the information. :) I'm certainly going to look into this series.


  3. Sounds as if I need to check into this series. Thanks for the information. I'm glad I found this article. Check out my first and recently released novel, Long Journey to Rneadal. This exciting story is a romantic action adventure in space.

  4. Nice preview. This author is unknown to me, this series looks really interesting. Duly noted now. Thanks!

  5. I actually picked up the first book in the series while on holiday in the States a couple of weeks ago - drawn in my the great covers. I think I'll have to bump up its position in my reading pile.

  6. If you do get a chance to read it Cherry let me know what you think.

    Michelle I originally picked this series up because it had such an interesting premise and a kick-ass heroine :)

    Hope you get a chance to try it Donna.

    Cool coincidence Nicole. Hope you like it.


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