Orbit acquires fantasy author Barker's dragon bone battleship trilogy

Orbit acquires fantasy author Barker's dragon bone battleship trilogy

Little, Brown Book Group imprint Orbit has acquired world English rights to a new fantasy trilogy from RJ Barker.

Rights were secured by Orbit senior commissioning editor Jenni Hill from Ed Wilson of Johnson & Alcock. Orbit will publish in the UK and US, with option publishers in Germany, France and Italy. The trilogy's first book, The Bone Ships, will be published in September 2019.

The Bone Ships is set in the Hundred Isles, where great battleships made from the bones of extinct dragons fight for supremacy on the high seas.

Barker previously wrote The Wounded Kingdom trilogy, with its first instalment Age of Assassins (Orbit) - his debut - shortlisted for the David Gemmell Morningstar Award, the Kitschies Golden Tentacle, and two British Fantasy Awards.

Barker said: “The last year and a bit with all my friends at Orbit has been a whirlwind, I never really expected to be up for one award, never mind so many, and now I get to call myself a multi-award losing author. I love the sea and I love dragons, so putting the two together seemed like a really obvious next step."

Wilson added: “RJ did something rare and special with his first trilogy, and this second trilogy will further cement his reputation at the forefront of the UK fantasy revival. Very soon his name will be spoken of alongside the Martins, Hobbs and Abercrombies of this world.”