Thursday, 6 November 2014

YA A to Z: Kim Curran

I'm not planning on doing something about TLT's awesome YA A to Z feature EVERY day it runs, but a lot of my favourite authors seem to have surnames early in the alphabet, so it may feel that way for a few days!

18 months or so ago, just before I moved to London, I'd only met authors on a handful of occasions. I think Terry Pratchett and Adele Geras were perhaps the only two I'd met before becoming a blogger, while since then I'd been to Keris Stainton's book launch and the fabulous UKYA event organised by Keris, Keren David, and Susie Day, with a host of others present.

(I am cursed with a terrible memory; there's almost certainly an amazing event I've forgotten. So apologies in advance to anyone I've forgotten and offended!)

Anyway, I was in London for a few days, staying in LSE accommodation (which is completely besides the point, but I'd recommend it as fantastic value for money with great staff, by the way), when I noticed there was a launch for Kim Curran's Control and Bryony Pearce's The Weight Of Souls at Forbidden Planet. I'd read the Weight of Souls and liked it, but hadn't heard of Kim's book before, so picked up Shift, the first in the series, to see what it was like and whether it was worth going. Reading the first chapter, I enjoyed it, bought it, found a pub, and managed to race through it in a few hours, it did such a great job of capturing my attention!

I went to the launch itself and headed down the pub afterwards with people, and was EXTREMELY nervous (more so than I am these days!) to the point where I recognised Liz de Jager but was too shy to introduce myself and managed to be sat opposite Laura Lam, one of my very favourite authors, without recognising her! Thankfully Bryony and Kim both took the time to talk to me and were absolutely lovely and welcoming (as was Caroline Lambe of publishers Angry Robot.)

Since moving to London, I've met Kim on numerous occasions, at bookshop events, YALC, and at the awesome Super-Relaxed Fantasy Club, and she's always a great person to talk to, in person and on Twitter. As well, of course, she's a really great writer! Despite having raced through Shift so quickly, I held off Control until nearer the publication of Delete, concluding volume to her trilogy, which has unfortunately been delayed due to the Strange Chemistry imprint of Angry Robot closing. I've talked to a few bloggers I really respect, with similar tastes to me, who were lucky enough to read it prior to this news, and they've all told me that however long the wait is, it will be worth it! Planning on reading the pair of them back to back when Delete does come out.
Super-awesome Monday edit - Delete has a release date! It will be coming out in January 2015, released by Xist Publishing. Details are at Kim's site.

However Kim has released one book this year, and it's a fantastic one! I was intrigued by the plans for Glaze, which Kim self-published as an e-book and paperback, but which Jurassic London released a gorgeous limited edition hardback of as well. The actual synopsis originally interested me less simply because I'm not that big a fan of dystopians, but it took me by surprise by how much I enjoyed it, mainly due to excellent characters and a superb setting.

On that setting, from my review - "The Hunger Games and The Testing, 2 of my other 3 favourite dystopians, both feel like settings that could potentially exists many centuries into the future. Delirium, while it's probably my favourite dystopian series, doesn't really feel like one that could exist at all. But Glaze? Glaze feels like it's a society which could happen very, very soon - and one that, in some ways, already is. It's a totally believable extension of current social networking and of trends on the internet, which might make some people think twice about the amount of time they spend on Facebook and Twitter."

In addition to her fiction, Kim also produces some fantastic writing on the internet. I thought her piece 'Five Things I Learned When My Publisher Went Under', written for Chuck Wendig's excellent Terrible Minds blog just days after Strange Chemistry closed its doors, was superb. She was also kind enough to take part in a roundtable on being a 'hybrid' author which I ran, where I asked a few questions to her, Laura Lam, Keris Stainton and Siobhan Curham. (Check that out here and here if you missed it previously! Despite knowing the quality of her posts, I was still stunned by just how many amazing ones she came up with for the Glaze blog tour, organised by the fabulous Faye Rogers.

I loved her top 10 social media moments on this site, while a couple of other favourites include this awesome post on Adam Christopher's site about the importance of fiction when talking about issues,  and this one on Blog of Erised about the journey of Glaze from an idea to a novel.

Who's your favourite author whose surname starts with C? Hit me up in the comments, or tweet using the #YAAtoZ hashtag!


  1. Have you reopened your comments, then? Lovely! Well, Michelle Cooper and Kate Constable are two I like very much, off te top of my head. MC is the author f the wonderful FitzOsborne trilogy, about a royal family fleeing their tiny island kingdom when the Nazis invade. It shows a lot of the things going on in England during the war - real historical characters whom our heroes/heroines meet because, while they're poor, they are, after all, royals, living with their rich aunt(she married a rich commoner). KC writes lovely, gentle time slip fantasies, but also did a very good fantasy trilogy that entered Tamora Pierce territory in style.

  2. Oh, and Cath Crowley! How could I forget her? :-)