Thursday, January 22, 2009

Maze Runner on Audio and Kirkus Review

I wanted to wait until tomorrow, but you know how I am with good news. Can't ever show any patience. Well, it is MY blog, ya know? Plus, the whole point of this blog was for my readers to experience the day to day life of an author.

I received a very happy phone call today from Lauren Abramo from my agency, Dystel & Goderich. She's over subsidiary rights, and today we sold the audio rights for THE MAZE RUNNER to Listening Library, a division of Random House. It will be published for both the retail and the library market at the same time the book comes out (Christmas 2009), unabridged, on both CD and digital download.

To learn more about Listening Library, CLICK HERE. They are awesome, best of the best, and they do audio for much more than Random House. For example, they also do Percy Jackson, the Twilight books, and Harry Potter to name a few. I'm very excited, not only to be with them, and to stay with a division of Random House, the same company doing the book itself, but I'm also just ecstatic that MAZE will be on audio period. I had no clue until today.

Kudos go not only to Lauren for getting this deal, but also to Michael Bourret for originally keeping all the subrights to MAZE in the first place (audio, foreign, UK, movie, etc.). Otherwise it would've been a long time before I saw any money from this. So there's a little lesson on the business side of authoring.

I can't wait to hear it on audio. I think it could really work well, unless they hire that deep-voiced dude from American Idol's first week of auditions.

Okay, onto the second item. We got our first major review for THE HUNT FOR DARK INFINITY today, and it's from Kirkus. At first I didn't think it was really that glowing OR negative, just kind of neutral. But on further readings, I think it's very good. The only thing even slightly negative is really just a plot misunderstanding (when they say "no explanation"). In hindsight, I could've made that a little more clear.

Now, it's semi spoilerish. You know me. I'd hate to read a review like this before reading a book. I'll put up a warning both before and after the review. Read at your own risk.


Tick, Paul and Sophia were brought together to solve a set of clues that led them into other dimensions in The Journal of Curious Letters (2008), the first installment in this intriguing series. They’ve spent the summer relaxing with building anticipation for their next call to action. It isn’t long in coming. A message from Master George tells them to meet in the woods for transportation to headquarters and their next assignment. They’re whisked away into another reality…but was it Master George who did the whisking?

The Realities are crumbling around the edges, and it is up to the trio to save the day. They race across surrealistic landscapes drawn from an imagination that crosses Salvador DalĂ­ with Baum’s Land of Oz. Readers will be as puzzled as the characters, who tumble from one complex and outrageous situation to the next, rescued from each at the last minute—sometimes with no explanation. But it all holds together remarkably well, encouraging suspension of disbelief to make way for glorious flights of imagination. (Fantasy. 10 & up)


Now, if you didn't read it (yeah, right), here are my favorite, non-spoiler highlights:

"intriguing series" Yes, indeed, my good man.

"an imagination that crosses Salvador Dali with Baum's Land of Oz" Boo-yah!

"holds together remarkably well" Why, thank you.

"glorious flights of imagination" Ah, glorious. Simply glorious.

Not bad, huh? Kirkus has been known to be tough, so I'm more than thrilled with this review.

Finally, a very interesting article in Time Magazine about the future of the book industry. You can read it by CLICKING HERE.

Thanks, and have a great day!!!


Don said...

Hooray! We love listening library at our house. Er, I mean, in our car.

Can't wait to read Dark Infinity. I'll pick up a copy at Storymaker's so you can sign it.

Frank Cole said...

You're like... famous, dude! I mean like... famous!

L.T. Elliot said...

Congrats on both counts! I think it's a great review, myself!

Anonymous said...

I cannot wait for the maze runner! I think its gonna b an awesome book bcuz ur books usually r (considering that read the Journal of Curious Letters in a week. The maze runner is just an awesome title. Listening Library. Yeah, I've heard they've done a lot of books but the only one I know that they did was Inheritance (eragon, eldest, brisingr, etc.). Cool, they do Percy Jackson?! One of my favorite series'.

Q said...

My review is going to post on the publication date. It's not as prestigious as Kirkus, but it's still an opinion.

Irish said...

Congrats on the review...and the audio. I love audio books. If you need anyone to give a test then you just pop one in mail to have the address...unless you tossed it. That would be sad but i'd understand you're a big famous author now. Too good for us little people. ;-)

James Dashner said...

Irish, how could I ever be too good for you? Come on, now.

Heather Moore said...

I think the "no explanation" was referring to Tick, et al. having no explanation when they were transported from place to place (or why), until things started getting pieced together. I don't think it meant no explanation for the reader. Because as the reader we know more than Tick. So, I'd say that the review is 100% positive. Huge congrats!

LouMac said...

Congrats on the review and on selling the audio rights! I can't wait for your books. They are going to be awesome, knowing how awesome you are. Congrats again! I can't wait!

Luisa Perkins said...

Fantastic news!!!!

Karen Pellett said...

To be compared with the Wizard of Oz is pretty darn impressive. Way to go!!! Keep up the awesome work. We all look forward to reading more from you.

Anonymous said...

James, only you could fixate on two tepid words in a clear endorsement by Kirkus. Whiner. As always, I speak with a distinctive greenish tinge.


J.N. Future Author said...

yay! that is absolutly fantastic!!! I can't wait! I love audio books! and I will definatly pick on up as soon as it comes out!!!

(BTW, the J.F. audios are more than just a little strange....)

and I totally agree with Irish - if you need a tester, for anything, I'll be waiting!!!

Unknown said...

congratulations! Awesome news!

Mr Ripley's Enchanted Books said...

Hello James,

Are any of your books going to be released in the U.K.?

All the best.


James Dashner said...

Thanks for all the congrats!

Mr. Vincent, I think my UK rights will most definitely be sold in the near future, especially for THE MAZE RUNNER.

Thanks for asking, and go UK!