The author resides in Pismo Beach, California, with a thoroughly unpleasant parrot. Of her debut tale in Asimov’s she says, “ ‘Noble Mold’ is the first published story in a series about the immortal agents of a twenty-fourth-century salvage company run by an all-powerful cabal of scientists and investment bankers. There really was a Fr. Rubio living at Santa Barbara Mission at the time this story covers, and his portrait can be seen at the museum there, smirking out at the visitors with an expression that implies that he knows more than he’s telling…
A fantasy debut by the author of finds former assassin Smith of the Children of the Sun people looking forward to his retirement and overseeing an endangered sea caravan in the wake of those who would kill him for his past deeds.
All of the mortals referred to in Kage Baker’s latest Company story (her first, “Noble Mold,” appeared in our March 1997 issue), actually lived and worked in the last century at Fort Ross—Russia’s failed colony just north of San Francisco. “A Vasilii Kalugin was, in fact, stationed at the fort during the time mentioned in this story. The orchard and the fortress are still there, and well worth a visit; the ghosts are pleasant and courteous, and the holy water still flows free.” Ms. Baker’s first novel, will be out from Harcourt Brace in February.
His name is John James—at least, that’s the name he gives to anyone asking. He’s a former pirate just back in Port Royal from the sack of Panama, and he has every intention of settling down and leading a respectable life. First, though, he must honor a promise and deliver a letter to the mistress of one of his dead comrades.
But the lady is much more than she seems, and the letter turns out to contain detailed instructions for recovering a hidden fortune. It’s one thing to know where treasure may be found; finding it, and keeping it, is quite another. On his quest for a prince’s ransom John is joined by two unlikely allies: a black freedman named Sejanus Walker and a humble clerk named Winthrop Tudeley. Pirate attacks, hurricanes, shipwrecks, sharks, unearthly visitations and double-crosses follow. Especially double-crosses…
Kage Baker, celebrated creator of the Company novels and the standout collection now brings together pirates, primates, eldritch horrors, maritime ghosts, and much more in . This captivating new collection of fantastic short fiction is sure to cement her reputation as one of the most original storytellers working in the fantasy and speculative fiction genres today.
Whether spinning tales of the mysterious young woman and the dreadful pirate captain Henry Morgan in the original novella “The Maid on the Shore,” the tiny California beach community assaulted by Lovecraftian terrors in “Calamari Curls,” or the girl menaced by a haunting photograph and a trio of aspiring vampires at the heart of “Portrait, With Flames,” Kage Baker distinguishes herself throughout as a storyteller extraordinaire, crafting intricately-woven plots, compelling characters, and captivating settings filled with convincing detail.
As likely to shock and surprise as it is to fill you with a sense of weird wonder and delight, will entrance you with its inventive prose, astound you with its action, and seduce you with its style.