CROWNING GLORY: UNVEILING ZEN CHO'S PAPERBACK COVER
19 February 2016
By Phoebe Taylor
Hands up if you loved Zen Cho's debut novel, Sorcerer to the Crown? OK, hands down, I know it was all of you. A beleaguered sorcerer facing danger at every turn; a singularly determined young prodigy protecting a world-changing discovery; a cantankerous witch in pursuit of justice; not to mention a whole cast of society ladies, difficult aunts, magicians, schoolgirls, politicians, princes, fairies, vampires, dragons . . . what's not to love? Described variously as 'Jane Austen meets P. G. Wodehouse . . . plus magic' and 'Jonathan Strange meets Georgette Heyer', this hilarious and utterly charming novel has something for everyone. Fantasy fan? Check. Lover of Regency romance? Check. Comedy nerd? Check. Looking for action, plotting, intrigue and Really Wild Things? Check. I admit, if you're after spaceships, zombies or post-apocalyptic wastelands you might be disappointed, but frankly you should consider reading this anyway.
So it is with great delight that I present to you . . . *drumroll* . . . the PAPERBACK cover! Take a good look:
Seen it? Now look again. Did you immediately spot the faces in the centre? OK, you probably did. Most people are more observant than I am. But STILL. Pretty snazzy, don't you think? Our designer James Annal has done a stellar job on this, creating a look that both references the swirly foil perfection of the hardback jacket and brings something new and intriguing to the paperback. For those of you who gushed over the original gold foil - don't worry, this edition will also be be-foiled! But in an eye-catching RED, which should stand out on the shelves.
So if you already have the hardback and/or the ebook: congratulations! You are a person of excellent taste. Have you considered celebrating by buying the paperback, to complete your collection? And if you HAVEN'T yet encountered the joy that is Sorcerer to the Crown: congratulations! You have such a treat ahead of you. Try a free extract here. The paperback will be released on the 28th July.
* * *
ENGLISH MAGIC LIES IN THEIR HANDS
In Regency London, Zacharias Wythe is England's first African Sorcerer Royal. He leads the eminent Royal Society of Unnatural Philosophers, but a malicious faction seeks to remove him by fair means or foul. Meanwhile, the Society is failing its vital duty - to keep stable the levels of magic within His Majesty's lands. The Fairy Court is blocking its supply, straining England's dangerously declining magical stores. And now the government is demanding to use this scarce resource in its war with France.
Ambitious orphan Prunella Gentleman is desperate to escape the school where she's drudged all her life, and a visit by the beleaguered Sorcerer Royal seems the perfect opportunity. For Prunella has just stumbled upon English magic's greatest discovery in centuries - and she intends to make the most of it.
At his wits' end, the last thing Zachariah needs is a female magical prodigy! But together, they might just change the nature of sorcery, in Britain and beyond.
* * *
‘An enchanting cross between Georgette Heyer and Susannah Clarke, full of delights and surprises. Zen Cho unpins the edges of the canvas and throws them wide’
‘Fabulous! If you like Austen or Patrick O’Brian, or magic and humor like Susanna Clarke, or simply a very fun read, you will really, really, enjoy this!’
‘A warm, funny debut novel by a brilliant new talent'
‘Sorcerer to the Crown is a captivating debut that, aside from examining both gender and racial prejudice, tells an entertaining story with wit and consummate skill’
‘Sorcerer to the Crown combines magic and the Regency period in the manner of Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell, but adds an Austenian piquancy . . . Cho’s debut has much to recommend it, particularly its implicit critique of colonialism and its frothy good humour’
‘Witty, wise and wonderful, Sorcerer to the Crown is an admirable achievement and a deep delight’