Thursday, July 8, 2010

UK Mass-market edition of ECHO - Sept. 30

Now, let me note that the UK readers are not left out of the paperback ECHO celebrations! True, British/Australian/New Zealand fans don’t get the famous Green Slime trade paperback, nor do they get the EXILE eight-page full-color excerpt. Nor do you get THE EXILE itself, unless you can convince Orion Books that there is indeed a market for graphic novels on your side the pond. [g] On the other hand…

September 30th heralds the publication of the UK mass-market paperback edition (that’s the smaller size) of AN ECHO IN THE BONE! Besides the very snazzy cover shown above (it’s actually covered with gold flakes, not just yellow; very eye-catching, though not green [g]), you also get a nice chunk of what the UK publisher tantalizingly describes as “end-matter.” [cough]

This is stuff they put at the end of the book, in hopes of providing new purchasers with something special. In this case, UK fans will get:
1) Potted biographies of a number of prominent characters,
2) An essay on the Life and Times of Scotland in the 18th century (not written by me, but a nice job by whoever did write it),
3) _Beautiful_ (and geographically correct!) maps, both of the Scottish Highlands, and of the American Colonies, circa 1776. Aaaannnnddd…

4) An excerpt from Book Eight, which tells you What Happened to Jem in the Tunnel. Which I will give you a small taste of here….

Copyright Diana Gabaldon 2010

He must be getting near the end of the tunnel. Jem could tell by the way the air pushed back against his face. All he could see was the little red light on the train's dashboard--did you call it a dashboard on a train? he wondered. He didn't want to stop, because that meant he'd have to get out of the train, into the dark. But the train was running out of track, so there wasn't much else he could do.

He pulled back a little bit on the lever that made the train go, and it slowed down. More. Just a little more, and the lever clicked into a kind of slot and the train stopped with a little jerk that made him stumble and grab the edge of the cab.

An electric train didn't make any engine noise, but the wheels rattled on the track and the train made squeaks and clunks as it moved. When it stopped, the noise stopped too. It was really quiet.

"Hey!" he said out loud, because he didn't want to listen to his heart beating. The sound echoed, and he looked up, startled. Mum had said the tunnel was really high, more than thirty feet, but he'd forgot that. The idea that there was a lot of empty space hanging over him that he couldn't see bothered him a lot. He swallowed, and stepped out of the tiny engine, holding on to the frame with one hand.

"Hey!" he shouted at the invisible ceiling. "Are there any bats up there?"

Silence. He'd kind of been hoping there were bats. He wasn't afraid of them--there were bats in the old broch, and he liked to sit and watch them come out to hunt in the summer evenings. But he was alone. Except for the dark.

His hands were sweating. He let go of the metal cab and scrubbed both hands on his jeans. Now he could hear himself breathing, too.

"Crap," he whispered under his breath. That made him feel better, so he said it again. Maybe he ought to be praying, instead, but he didn't feel like that, not yet.

There was a door, Mum said. At the end of the tunnel. It led into the service chamber, where the big turbines could be lifted up from the dam if they needed fixing. Would the door be locked?

Suddenly he realized that he'd stepped away from the train and he didn't know whether he was facing the end of the tunnel or back the way he'd come. In a panic, he blundered to and fro, hands out, looking for the train. He tripped over part of the track and fell sprawling. He lay there for a second saying "Crap-crap-crap-crap-crap!" because he'd skinned both knees and the palm of his hand, but he was OK, really, and now he knew where the track was, so he could follow it and not get lost.

He got up, wiped his nose, and shuffled slowly along, kicking the track every few steps to be sure he stayed with it. He thought he was in front of where the train had stopped, so it didn't really matter which way he was going--either he'd find the train or he'd find the end of the tunnel. And then the door. If it was locked, maybe--

Something like an electric shock ran right through him. He gasped and fell over backward. …

(You _were_ paying attention, weren’t you, when I told you I was really Black Jack Randall…?)

or or call them at 480-947-2974. Normally, they can get UK books without much trouble, and I’d be delighted to stop by the bookstore and sign them for you.



  2. How would one go about getting this in Canada, I wonder?

  3. Dear Virgo--

    You could order it from you might get in touch with the Poisoned Pen and see if they can get it for you; they usually can get UK books, and they'll ship anywhere in the world.

  4. You are too much! Hope your knee is feeling better. Thanks for the fun cliff hanger, again!

  5. What the what?!? You know cliff hangers just make people bug you about the next book more right?

    Love it anyway

  6. Honest question, with nothing but curiosity behind it: you clearly felt, at least, strongly about the fanfic posts you made.

    Why delete them, then? Or, why delete them and at least not put up a note explaining why, or that you have been presented ideas you need to think on?

    After all, to be frank, once it's on the web, it's there--someone, somewhere, copied the text, or screencapped, and it ain't going away. But if you feel so strongly, why just delete it all with no explanation?

    Mind, you don't owe me one, nor an answer to this comment. But like I said, I'm honestly curious.

  7. You did this for me didn't you? I knew it. And yes, of course I knew you were Black Jack Randall at the end of the book.... mwahahahahaha

  8. Tempt me not! Swedish edition won't be out till August 4th, so I set a world record in scrolling by the excerpt...

    Now I will go to bed & try to forget that the text is there... ;)

  9. Rose--

    Because this blog is principally for the benefit of my fans, and having all that hoo-ha going on was distressing a lot of them.

    I left the discussion up long enough for everyone who had a say to say it, believe me. (And there was at the same time a sane, reasonable discussion of the issues involved, going on in my folder at the Compuserve Books and Writers Community. That's still there, if anyone _really_ wants to read it.) I figured--having been online for lo, these many years, and having a Really Good idea how things work--that if I left any capacity for comments up, we'd get endless repetitive guff, of no discernible benefit in terms of discussion, and it would drive away all the people who come here to get news and talk about things they're interested in about my work.

  10. arrrgggggggggghhhhhhh - I've just finished reading An Echo in the Bone (blue version) which I carefully saved for my Summer read and that ending was bad enough but Diana - poor wee Jem - what have you done to him? And your Irish readers - will we get the same treatment as the UK market

    your in agonized suspense


  11. Dear Siobhan--

    Well, yes, I imagine so. The UK edition does have the _whole_ Jem-in-the-tunnel excerpt, you understand, not just this teaser. [g]

  12. Diana, thank you so much for this little taste, you made my day! I got so excited when I saw it that I jumped up and felt the need to tell someone about it...but then I remembered that I cant talk any of my friends and family into reading my very favorite books, so they wouldnt understand my excitment. I wish I could find a stone circle that will take me two or three years into the future when book eight is out!

  13. I hear a wee bit of Claire here. She tends to curse in a crisis too.

  14. Virgo

    Not sure which book it is you are looking for in Canada but everything released so far is currently available online at or or in store at Chapters, and both are taking pre-orders for The Exile.

  15. re above post, only anonymous cause I don't have an 'name' here.

  16. AUGH! You couldn't have posted just a little bit more?!?!?!

    I should be used to this by now, after lo, these many years, of reading your excerpts and being tortured.

    Yeah, I see the BJR part of you coming out in the way you cut that exerpt.

  17. Dear Black Jack Randall,

    Holy Shit!


  18. HaHa...that was very funny Diana...thanks for the teaser, couldn't read it fast enough...well I know what I'll be asking my mum for when she goes to Scotland later this year :)

  19. Having lived through seven major cliffhangers thus far, this is just a wee tease. But that's alright... I'll just go back to my knitting and cogitate ~ sooner or later I will have the whole book in my hands and this will just be a mosquito bite. (Yeah, ok ~ it itches! I will not scratch!)

  20. Crap is right! *g* As others have said before, you really do have a way with a cliffhanger! Love the idea that the UK edition will have these little extras - may have to get it just for the maps.


  21. I don't usually read excerpts --swore off of them after FC but I am so worried about wee Jem I thought OK one less person to ponder about! HA! although for a minute I thought the parenthetical about BJR was what Jem was hearing...!

  22. Halloooo from NZ :-)
    I've bought the lovely gold leaf covered ECHO last week but am dismayed to find it may not be the exact some version of which you speak :-( It doesn't have any biographies, essay's, maps or excerpts at the rear. But I would have been none the wiser anyhow and am still virtually buzzing with excitement to read it.
    Dr Gabaldon, thank you. For your wonderful life enriching books and for your inspiration.
    N.B. Where can I write to these Orion Books people...we must have THE EXILE in New Zealand !!! There is a huge demand, momunmentous even :-)

  23. Crap is right! Thank you Diana for this taste, I have missed the Frasers and the MacKenzies so much that I have started reading Cross Stitch for about the 5th time. Can't wait for number eight!

  24. Why, oh why? I am now left wondering...what's next?
    I hate waiting, but I will gladly wait for book eight. Thank you for sharing this little bit.

  25. How IS Book Eight coming along by the way? Have you any ballpark when it will be finished?

  26. I've just tweeted Orion Books (@orionbooks) and told them I'm in NZ and I want The Exile.

  27. Dear Kiwi--

    I believe you have the Orion "export" edition; that has the same cover as the UK mass-market (and is the same size), but doesn't have the "endmatter" goodies. The UK edition _with_ the endmatter won't be out until Sept. 30th, as noted. (But the UK does send out these "export" editions--as does the US--to other countries. Those are non-exclusive, meaning any English-language publisher (who has a contract) can distribute them.)

  28. I hesitate to sic y'all on my nice editor at Orion [g], but if any of you _do_ feel impelled to write to the company about the desirability of their publishing THE EXILE, the company address is and the publisher's name is Malcolm Edwards (no secret; you could Google that and find out).

  29. Dear Maliha--

    Well, I'm a bit behindhand at the moment, owing to the knee surgery (feeling fine and the knee's limbering up nicely, but I get Really Tired Really Fast), but Book 8 is humming along in the pile of stuff I'm doing. (I'm just now finishing up the short piece--it turned into a novella--about Michael and Joan for an anthology, but should ship that off tomorrow. Then I have a short Lord John piece "Lord John and the Plague of Zombies" for a different anthology, THE SCOTTISH PRISONER, THE OUTLANDISH COMPANION, VOl. II, and...Book Eight, all in progress.)

  30. While I think this is by far the most attractive of the "symbol" front covers, I really love the "landscape" ones we have in the UK - so much that I bought the whole set even though I already had books up to Fiery Cross in other covers. Will Echo be released to match? (e.g. )
    Regardless, thanks for the updates, excerpts and tantalising lists of Work In Progress!

  31. Please, Please, O' please tell me when you think book 8 will be coming out? I have read 1 thru 7 in the last 2 months, I just can't get enough.

  32. Yay for excerpts!! I can't wait for book 8 to be finished and get my hands on it. I re-read the entire series before reading Echo. Maybe I need to start back at book 1 again to fill need for Jamie & Claire!

  33. (You _were_ paying attention, weren’t you, when I told you I was really Black Jack Randall…?)

    Oh yes, a truth I cannot forget and will always find most fascinating. I thank you for the teaser. Although the suspense (and the wait) is uncomfortable, at least you didn't follow it up with oil and a lashing in true BJR fashion. Is he not feeling well?

    BTW - I hope you're healing well from surgery!


  34. Dear Diana, thank you for the teaser! It just makes waiting so much more intense. But what about us Americans who have already bought bothe the hardcover and the paperback? Will we ever get to see the rest of the Jem spoiler? Won't you PLEEEEEEEAAAASSSE post it, at least once the UK version is out? Dying for spoilers here, Pat

  35. This is very exciting! I do have one question though. Upon viewing your website I read information about The Red Ant's Head that was suppose to be out in 2006, but can't find it for sale anywhere. Did this book get finished and published?

    Love your books!

  36. Dear Pat--

    Oh, yes, I will indeed post the excerpt to my website later this fall. Promised the UK they could publish the paperback with it first, though.

  37. Dear Jana--

    The website is HUGELY out of date, and in process of being redesigned, even as we speak. With luck [crossing fingers], it'll be reconstructed and up by mid-September, in time for THE EXILE's launch.

    Meantime, I put up news--tour dates, book releases, etc.--here, as well as on the website (when it's all finished, the blog will sort of become part of the website, or so I'm told by the web designer).

    RED ANT'S HEAD is about half finished, but I have several things ahead of it in the work queue!

  38. Dear All--

    No, I have no idea when Book Eight will be finished. It normally takes me about two and a half years to write one of the Big Books (the main OUTLANDER novels), what with the size, the research, and the increasing complexity of structure.

    Add to that, about a year for book-tours, promotion, and other travel and nuisance (I don't mean _you_ guys are a nuisance, but--for instance--this morning's email included a draft of a back-of-book ad for my approval, marketing information from Costco, a request from Barnes and Noble to do a "3 favorite books" feature, an invitation to guest-blog somewhere, and a discussion from my agent regarding a clause in the film option agreement (that's all OK, btw), and a boilerplate contract from the Random House Speakers Bureau. Oh--and the draft of an announcement regarding Something Interesting [g] that you'll hear about in the next few days. ALL this stuff has to be handled today--plus a few travel arrangements for the trip to Scotland and Ireland in August. This is necessary, but it sure does eat into the time available for work).

    That's three and a half years. Add six months (ideally) for production of the book--editing/revision/copy-editing/proof-reading/book design, etc.--and it's usually about four years between the major books of the series.

    That's one reason why I do occasional shorter pieces--shorter books, like the Lord John novels and the new graphic novel, or novellas and short-stories for anthologies. These don't detract from my main work (because I always work better when I have a number of projects going; and I've _always_ worked this way), but they do mean y'all get something in read in between. Hope you'll enjoy it all!

  39. Thanks for posting part of the excerpt! I loved it!! As always, you masterfully keep stoking my anticipation for book 8.


  40. 4 years? Gadzooks! I guess I'll have to wait on excerpts to help me get through.
    Thanks for writing-- I enjoy your style tremendously and have found that when I read other author's works I am constantly comparing them to your high level of prose. (Needless to say most are nowhere near your standards) Keep up the outstanding work!

  41. thanks Diana - I'll keep an eye out for the UK edition to see the rest of the teaser as I can't get that poor child out of my head. And one final question, as I don't want to distract you from your work/life but you're coming to Ireland? Will you do a reading? Or is it just a holiday?

    - Siobhán

  42. Dear Siobhan--

    Really quick holiday/research trip. [g] Ireland has something to do with LORD JOHN AND THE SCOTTISH PRISONER.

  43. Can you pleeeease post the rest of the excerpt? Or will it be in the US mass market edition? And when will that be out?

  44. You're right about the Black Jack Randall thing. The tension is steadily mounting, my eyes are plastered to the screen and my hands are balled into fists of anxiety as I'm fearing for poor Jem, and then the excerpt stops.

    Oh well, I'd rather have a good cliffhanger(or, you know, 3) to ponder until the next book than nothing. I hope you have a speedy recovery, and enjoy your trip overseas :)

  45. Diana,
    Thanks for the updates on Book Eight! I'm glad your knee is feeling better...that surgery sounded and looked horribly intense. I'm even gladder (if that's a word) & excited for the pieces you will be coming up with in meantime. I was wondering if you've heard of or read Juliet Marillier's Sevenwaters series? And if you have what you thought of it? It has the whole Celtic fantasy thing going on...I'm so desperate to find a new series to read!

  46. Just when I thought we would have a small reprieve from the tension of all these cliffhangers, you ramp it up again.
    Thankfully, not only do you have intelligent readers, we are resourceful as well. I'll call my mother-in-law when the paperback comes out. She is also enamoured with the Outlander series, and she happens to live in the U.K.!
    The jig is up, Black Jack! :)

    Also, noting that Lord John has been to Quebec and Ireland, will he be stopping by my home island of Newfoundland, which was a large part of shipping, piracy, and immigration, and owned by the English? Amazing location. Colourful people. Rich history.

  47. Dear malzination--

    No, I haven't come across the Sevenwaters series; I'll keep an eye out for it!

  48. Oh, crap - Jem! Now I have something to think about for the next while. Speedy recovery to you!

  49. Poor wee Jem. I'm worried for him but he is a very resourceful little boy and I think will find his way. You are Black Jack!

  50. Where in Ireland will you be Diana? I just returned from a 17 day trip with my sister and it was so wonderful. I just want to know if I was in a place that Lord John would have been, crazy I know, but you know how us fans are. :)

    By the way, thank you for the excerpt! OMG Jem!!

  51. Dear Lisa--

    I'm not actually sure, yet. A day in Dublin, but then I need to see a couple of places that would have been Jacobite hangouts in the mid-18th century, and not quite sure of those yet.

  52. This is all so exciting, Diana! Thank you for everything!


  53. Hello Diana,
    Thank you for all the information that you have provided us yesterday.
    I hope you have enough energy, and good health to handle all these commitments.
    Have a wondeful time in Scotland and Ireland.
    ...but 4 years of waiting for the eight book...that is a long time time. [sad]
    I discovered the series this year, and devoured the 7 books! I felt hanging, lonely, anxious and frustrated at the end.
    Still, I'll stick around, waiting...
    I hope there will be good news in the future about the movie and everything else interesting that you're 'cooking' over there.

  54. I absolutely loved the excerpt, Diana. My best friend began reading the Outlander series just after Voyager was published and, though she is an avid reader, this series remains her favorite. She had been trying to get me to read your books forever, but I was working, going to school and raising a family at the time. I had no time for any reading beyond required texts or kids' books. I finished with my degree last May, and immediately began reading the Outlander series. I immediately fell in love with your books and spent last summer (my first summer of freedom) with Jamie and Claire. I have since read the rest of your books and love them all. I have always loved to read, and desperately missed reading for enjoyment. Your books have re-awakened that part of me and I am truly thankful to you because of it.

  55. Thanks for the excerpt Diana. I had been worrying about wee Jem *g*

    In the meantime, I'm hurtling through Phil Rickman's Bones of Avalon (thanks for that recommendation!) and then next on the pile is a book by a Sam Sykes. I hear that's pretty good too. *g*

    Thanks so much for the book recommendations. Christopher Brookmeyer has turned out to be very enjoyable too.


  56. Dear Deanna--

    Thank you! I'm really glad the series has been your pathway back into 'real' reading! [g]

  57. Dear Helen--

    Great! I'm glad you've been enjoying Rickman (try his Merrily Watkins series, too--those are excellent) and Brookmyre; two of my favorites!

    I'll put up some more Methadone items in the next few days.

  58. I was so excited to see the new excerpt, can't wait to see the rest of it.

    I am recently sidelined also, with a broken ankle. Fortunately I enjoy rereading and your books are my favorite reread!

    Looking forward to the next installment!


  59. Why yes, you _are_ BJR! *g* You really are all the characters and all the characters are you, so just from idle curiosity - I remember from the Books that Jem knows how to pick locks, is this another skill of yours?

    Waiting patiently for the next Big Book, and the Exile!

    Maria in Jackson

  60. Thanks for the excerp, love it. Can not wait to see what else you have in store for us. :D I need to convince my 5 month old to sleep more and my 4 year old to make believe more so that I can have them trained to entertain themselves when your next book comes out. LOL!!

  61. I love the BJR comment! And HOW does your husband like _that_ aspect of your character when it surfaces?


  62. If I could cast Black Jack Randall into the outer darkness and the 9th circle of hell for this, I would! May festering demons peel the skin off of "him" until "he" gives up the goods! Dammit! Can anyone say Frustration?! I can wait another 3.5 years for resolution of the other threads of the story, but the thought of Jemmy trapped inside a mountain for time and eternity wakes me up at night in a cold sweat!!

    That said, awaiting patiently upon your pleasure, Milady. Ahem.

  63. Oh my goodness, I don't think I can wait for the full excerpt! And this followed by the news that you might read other tidbits at your next appearance which I have no hope of making! Truly evil! But seriously, really appreciate anything you give us, and the wait is always worth it in the end! :) Saving Lord John and the Hand of Devils for an extended weekend trip coming up, gotta extend my time in your universe as long as possible. :p

  64. I just read all 7 book for the first time, they are my favorite books and I will most defiantly read them all again. I don't know how I'll wait until book 8 gets here!

  65. Oooooohhhh Good Lord!!!! Awesome-ness!

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