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Winter Song Kindle Edition

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Length: 432 pages
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Harsh, sometimes grotesque, strongly compelling - a classical journey told in a new, uncompromising voice." - John Meaney

"Harvey paints a grimly convincing portrait of a subsistence existence on the inhospitable world. Harvey's... novel depicts a fascinating universe of want and plenitude, to which he will hopefully return in future novels." - Eric Brown, The Guardian

"This is tough, traditional science fiction with plenty of “Hard SF” and world-building, intriguingly leavened by the spirit of the Norse myths that runs through it. Good entertainment by a thinking writer." - The Morning Star

"[Colin Harvey] deserves a place on your shelf along with Asher, Reynolds, Hamilton and Stross." - Deadwood Reviews

Praise for Colin Harvey's Previous Works:

"The novel is familiar in a haunting way, yet unique in its storytelling... Teens and adults who love science fiction will enjoy this thought-provoking work." - Armchair Interviews (reviewing Lightning Days)

"...a unique, rich, yet realistic and believable fantasy world excellently written" - entrepreneur.com (reviewing The Silk Palace)


From the Paperback edition.

About the Author

Colin Harvey lives in Bristol in the south-west of England with his wife Kate and spaniel Alice. His first fiction was published in 2001, since when he has written novels, short stories and reviews, edited anthologies and judged the Speculative Literature Foundation's annual Gulliver Travel Research Grant for five years. Colin's reviews appear regularly at Strange Horizons and he is the feature writer for speculative fiction at Suite101.

Product Details

  • File Size: 539 KB
  • Print Length: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Angry Robot; Reprint edition (August 31, 2010)
  • Publication Date: August 31, 2010
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B003Z9KFKI
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,316,205 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Colin Harvey was born in Cornwall in 1960, and now lives between Bristol and Bath. He worked on a kibbutz and in a night shelter in the Midlands before joining Unilever. Colin worked for Unilever for over 20 years, including launching Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream in Iceland, and as part of the project teams rolling out Sunsilk Colour Active Shampoo in Australia, and Vaseline Body Butter in North America.

Colin has been a freelance writer since 2007. He reviewed for Strange Horizons for six years, and served on the Management Committe of the Speculative Literature Foundation for five, during which time he co-judged the Travel Research Grant and the Older Writers Grant.

His short stories have appeared in Albedo One, Gothic.net, Song of the Siren and Speculations, as well as several original anthologies. His novels are all available on Amazon.

Colin's anthology Killers was nominated for the Black Quill Award and the British Fantasy Award.



Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on October 24, 2009
Format: Paperback
Although Winter Song still isn't the cutting-edge science fiction that the Angry Robot imprint promises, it is a genuinely solid effort that made my morning commute a lot shorter. Literature, it ain't - but Winter Song combines good storytelling and strong (but not overwhelming) world-building to make for an entertaining read. It doesn't push any boundaries - if anything, this is a throwback to the Ace or DAW era. But that's no bad thing.

Winter Song takes place on a desolate, icy world in the backwoods of space. After a brief kerfuffle with space pirates, Karl Allman crash-lands on this hillbilly snowball. Fortunately, he's not totally alone - the planet is home to Icelandic space colonists. These Nordic stragglers have been cut off for centuries and, although they're still keeping alive and using space-age technology, they've regressed quite badly from a social standpoint.

Karl begins his life with the settlers as a raving lunatic - his spaceship (now so much rubbish) managed to download its entire database into Karl's head. So not only does he have to survive space-age Viking culture and find a way home, he's got to do it while being the man-with-two-brains.

For a small paperback, this is a book with some big topics. Between the front and the back covers, Karl stumbles across a second tribe of lost colonists, conducts a detailed exploration of space-Viking culture, gets mauled by a wild bestiary of alien critters, hikes across a frozen wilderness and saves the world from magnetic mangling. Makes for a long day. And, in the breaks, Karl explains the rest of the universe to his Girl Friday.

To Harvey's credit, although this is a lot of world-building, it is never intrusive.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jess C. Horsley on August 31, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Harvey's latest sci-fi yarn explores a number of previously explored and popular themes within the sci-fi community: the internal struggle of right and wrong, isolation, societal regression, and mythology among others. That said, the story is more a character study than an actioner, with the narrative following the tragic adventure of pilot, space explorer and scientist Karl Allman on a doomed space mission. Finding himself marooned on the remote planet Isheimur, a cold, desolate place populated by the remnants of human settlers who've been cut off from their space-faring brethren for hundreds of years, Allman (whose name is an obvious tout to his "everyman" quality) faces everything from wild beasts and tribal societies to the harshest weather around...it's no wonder the guy just wants to get home.

With his only goal of getting off the barbaric rock, Allman is forced to endure the primitive lifestyles of his rescuers as well as face off against baddies who are simply products of their environments. One thing Harvey does well is create an atmosphere of intensity and struggle and then develop the characters within this environment.

While I'm personally more a fan of military sci-fi Harvey's Winter Song, while not military in origin, does a great job of remaining suspenseful and tense. Likewise, his world building, character development, and somewhat existential examination of specific human characteristics all lend themselves to solid storytelling.

Overall, Colin Harvey's Winter Song is a solid additions to the Angry Robot Books library. No doubt die-hard sci-fi and fantasy fans will find themselves a new favorite publisher with Angry Robot hitting shelves. Look for additional releases in the coming months and watch [...] for more information!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mark Chitty on May 17, 2010
Format: Paperback
Winter Song is another title in the strong list Angry Robot Books has released since it's inception earlier this year. The new imprint has had good reviews for its titles and when I saw this one coming up for an October release I was very interested - any sci-fi set in a future where humanity has expanded across the galaxy is something I want to hear more about. Winter Song was not quite what I expected, but it delivered an entertaining read in an unforgiving environment.

Following Karl Allman as he crash lands on a forgotten and primitive colony world where the terraforming looks like it's going backwards, Winter Song is a novel that has more than a few surprises up its sleeve. I was expecting to walk into this with a more typical human vs alien world theme where there were many strange and wonderful creatures. What I got was a story focused on human characters that developed and grew with each situation they face.

Isheimur is a cold planet whose colony was set up with Icelandic heritage, and with strong willed characters in the leadership roles within the village, Karl finds himself in a difficult and frustrating situation. Ragnar, the village leader, believes in a harsh rule. He is not an unfair person, but with stores low and an extra pair of hands needed, he forces Karl to stay and help the village. Bera, a young woman in the village, is unpopular due to an unwed pregnancy. What is worse is the fact that she won't reveal the father to Ragnar. For this she is treated with little courtesy and often outright scorn. So when Karl arrives, half starved and in need of help, Bera is tasked with his treatment, leading to a friendship and quest to find the mysterious Winter Song, a relic of a long forgotten seed ship.
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