Brandon Sanderson looks skyward with new books for young readers

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Even before he sold his first novel nearly two decades ago, epic fantasy and sci-fi titan Brandon Sanderson was a prolific and persistent writer, who took a job as a hotel night porter. from Utah so he could write in the peaceful pre-dawn hours. Today, after publishing dozens of best-selling adult, YA, and children’s novels in more than 30 languages, Sanderson is enjoying a banner year, with another one taking shape.

This week, Random House Children’s Books publisher Delacorte Press published Skyward Flight: The Collectiona compilation of three short stories—reach of the sun, RedDawnand Evershore– which were co-authored by Sanderson and Janci Patterson and previously only available as eBooks and audiobooks. Hardcover too features exclusive character art, commentary by Sanderson, and deleted scenes from his three-book Skyward series (encompassing Toward the sky, View of the starsand Cytonic), which Delacorte published between 2018 and 2021.

The three novels comprising Skyward Flight: The Collection, Sanderson said, were inspired by his wish to “expand the reach” of his original Skyward series. This trilogy centers on Spensa Nightshade, a girl who dreams of becoming a pilot in a dangerous world at war for the future of humanity.

“Since the Skyward novels are all told from the point of view of the main protagonist, I started to think that the supporting characters were being shortchanged and not getting enough attention,” the author said. TP. “I felt like I was letting down those fans that bonded with the other characters and decided I had to do something about it.”

Sanderson enlisted the help of Patterson, a longtime friend who wrote a number of YA novels (including the paranormal A Thousand Faces trilogy) and collaborated with other authors, including James Goldberg, Lauren Janes and Megan Walker.

“Janci and I spent quite a bit of time thinking and discussing writing the novels from the perspective of three different protagonists,” Sanderson explained. “Then I did the outline and she wrote the stories. I knew Janci was good at writing first-person stories from different points of view, and I knew she would do a great job. And she did it.

A busy year for rogue librarians

Sanderson has also collaborated with Patterson on another new book slated for release this year: Bastille against the wicked librarians. Due for Starscape’s September 20 printing, the sixth hardcover installment in Sanderson’s Alcatraz vs. The Evil Librarians series features artwork by Hayley Lazo. The cover art, first revealed here, was created by Justin Gerard.

The mid-level adventure continues the saga of Alcatraz Smedry, who is on a quest to retrieve his 13th birthday present from his parents, a sandbag that holds the power to rule the universe, which was stolen by a secret cult of Evil Librarians. In the final caper, Alcatraz is grieving after failing to save his father from Bilbioden, the former founder of the evil librarian, and the boy’s friend Bastille must step in to foil the villain’s plot to take over the world.

Tor will pave the way for the release of Bastille against the wicked librarians with the staggered release of repackaged paperback editions of previous books in the series over the summer months. The publishing schedule kicks off May 3 with the first title in the series, Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librariansfollowed by The Scrivener’s Bones and The Knights of Crystallia (July the 5th), The broken lens (August 20) and The Dark Talent (September 20).

Strong start to 2023

And there’s more in store for Sanderson’s Legion enthusiasts, though some details are still shrouded in secrecy. It’s no secret, however, that Sanderson’s Dragonsteel Entertainment launched a Kickstarter campaign in March to help fund the author’s mystery publishing project, conceived during the dark days of the Covid eclipse. Providing respondents with books in a variety of formats and gift boxes, the month-long venture broke the all-time record for Kickstarter’s most funded project, with over 185,000 backers pledging over 41,750 $000.

“I gave myself these four books as a gift, after my 2020 tour was canceled due to the pandemic,” Sanderson recalled. “I felt stressed and had extra time, and I thought about how Jane Austen wrote her stories to share with her family. I thought I’d write something to share with my wife. Some ideas forced their way into my brain, and I found I couldn’t let them go.

And the author is delighted that these four new books have already found an audience. “I’m very proud of these books, and I think each represents a new aspect of storytelling that forced me to grow in an interesting way,” he said. “It’s already been a year of surprises, and the success of the Kickstarter campaign was a huge surprise. I was blown away by the result – and I’m satisfied and humbled.


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