Latest JJLA news


Orbit editor James Long has pre-empted for world rights to Legacy of Ash by Matthew Ward, and two further books, from literary agent John Jarrold. Orbit UK will publish alongside sister imprint Orbit US in a co-ordinated international publication, with the first book scheduled for November 2019.


Long said: “Legacy of Ash is epic in every sense of the word, with its diverse cast of characters and intense, bone-crunching battles (which are some of the best I’ve ever read) – a grand, sweeping tale of warring empires and one generation’s struggle to repair the mistakes of the past. I’m thrilled to welcome Matthew to the Orbit list and can’t wait to work with him on what promises to be a spectacular trilogy.”


Ward said: “I’ve been blown away by Orbit’s passion for Legacy of Ash. It’s a great pleasure to be welcomed into their family, and I look forward to an exciting road ahead.”


Jarrold added: “I have known Orbit for decades and been impressed with their publishing on both sides of the Atlantic – not just the titles, but the way they get behind authors and think outside the box in sales, marketing and publicity terms. So I was delighted when both Tim Holman and James Long were in touch rapidly about this wonderful fantasy series – Legacy of Ash is one of the best and most sophisticated epic fantasy debuts I’ve read in fifteen years and more. It’s going to be an exciting ride!”


• November 29th, 2018 • Posted in News


John Jarrold has concluded a three-book World Rights deal for Australian debut science fiction novelist Jeremy Szal with Gillian Redfearn, Publishing Director of Gollancz.

The first book is Stormblood: Vakov Fukasawa used to be a Reaper, a bio-enhanced soldier fighting for the intergalactic governing body of Harmony against a brutal invading empire. Now, he fights against the stormtech: the DNA of an extinct alien race Harmony injected into him, altering his body chemistry and making him permanently addicted to adrenaline and aggression. It made him the perfect soldier, but it also opened a new drug market that has millions hopelessly addicted to their own body chemistry.

But when Harmony tells him that his former ally Reapers are being murdered, Vakov is appalled to discover his estranged brother is likely involved in the killings. They haven’t spoken in years, but Vakov can’t let his brother down, and investigates. But the deeper he goes, the more addicted to stormtech he becomes, and Vakov discovers that the war might not be over after all. It’ll take everything he has to unearth this terrible secret, although doing so might mean betraying his brother. If his own body doesn’t betray him first.

Stormblood is The Wire meets Mass Effect with a dash of David Cronenberg. It’s character-driven, packed with visceral action and will appeal to those who like a strong dose of body horror in their space opera. Gollancz are planning to publish early in 2020.

Jeremy Szal said: “Stormblood is an incredibly personal book to me, and is packed with themes I love exploring:  sibling relationships, human-alien interactions, the horrors of war, and facing personal trauma, all set in a wide-screen future setting. I had so much fun spending time with these characters and could not imagine a better way to introduce them to the world than with Gollancz, a publisher I’ve always admired. I would like to thank John, Gillian, and the entire team for making my dream come true and believing in me from day one.”

Gillian Redfearn said: “I’ve had my eye on Jeremy for almost a year now, thanks to John Jarrold’s remarkable eye for a talented writer, having been struck by the vividness and cinematic nature of his writing from his first submission. Stormblood was exactly the project I’d been looking for: action-packed, character-driven SF that really drives a story home, while still touching on issues of social exclusion, addiction and family. It’s a cracking read, and I’m so delighted to welcome Jeremy Szal to the Gollancz list.”

John Jarrold said: “As soon as I saw Jeremy’s writing I knew we had something special on our hands. Gillian Redfearn also saw that immediately and both Jeremy and I would like to thank her for work above and beyond the call of duty over several months on this project. Its successful acquisition by Gollancz owes a huge amount to her personal enthusiasm  and thoughtfulness.”

Jeremy Szal was born in 1995 and was raised by wild dingoes. He writes about galactic nightmares, little traumas, and broken characters fighting for hope in dark worlds. His science fiction stories have appeared in Nature, Abyss & Apex, Lightspeed, Strange Horizons,, The Drabblecast, and have been translated into multiple languages. He is the fiction editor for the Hugo-winning StarShipSofa and has a BA in Film Studies and Creative Writing from UNSW. He carves out a living in sun-bleached Sydney, Australia, but prefers snowy weather. He loves watching weird movies, collecting boutique gins, exploring cities, and dark humour. STORMBLOOD is his first novel. Find him at or on Twitter at @JeremySzal


• November 2nd, 2018 • Posted in News


Ashok Kumar Banker is the bestselling and critically acclaimed author of over 63 books, which have sold over 3.2 million copies in 21 languages and 61 countries. He has been credited (by The New York Times, The Economist, The Wall Street Journal, CNN, among others) with having pioneered English-language genre fiction as well as English-language television serials in India. His ground-breaking internationally acclaimed eight-book Ramayana Series was the first trilogy, series, and SFF genre fiction in English published in India. It revolutionised Indian publishing, sparking off a multi-billion dollar resurgence in Indian mythology across all media.


He has also been credited as the author of the first Indian science fiction, fantasy, horror, crime, thriller stories and novels in English, creator and screenwriter of the first Indian TV series in English, co-creator and screenwriter of the first Malaysian TV series in English, the most watched historical TV series in India, the first Indian ebooks in English, the first Indian ebookstore, and several other firsts.


His epic fantasy The Burnt Empire series will be published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt under their John Joseph Adams imprint starting with Upon a Burning Throne, releasing in hardcover in April 2019.


John Jarrold said: ”I have been aware of Ashok for many years and I’m delighted to welcome him to the agency.  He is a wonderful writer, bursting with ideas and hugely prolific in many areas, and we are going to have exciting times together! The agency will be dealing with all of Ashok’s book rights outside the Indian subcontinent.”


• October 23rd, 2018 • Posted in News


Novelist Kareem Mahfouz is the latest client of the John Jarrold Literary Agency.

Kareem’s debut fantasy novel, first in a series titled Bonds of Blood, is Death’s Wake. What would you do if you burned alive and were reborn immune to fire’s touch? Or drowned and reawakened able to breathe under water? In Colnarmak death is not always the end, but that power comes at a price. Since the Wars of Balance, the Orphans have sent Guardians to hunt these godless men and women—these ‘Survivors’—with one purpose in mind: to deliver instant and irreversible death. As a small boy, Cole was forced to watch his mother’s brutal murder at the hands of a Survivor; after becoming a Guardian he committed his life to killing his way through his grief. For years he thought his pain was just that, pain. But there are worse things in the world than Survivors . . .

Death’s Wake is a story of revenge and redemption featuring multiple points of view. The novel explores themes of self-destructive human coping mechanisms, which can have dire and adverse effects on those closest to you.

This series sits somewhere between John Gwynne’s The Faithful and the Fallen series and Joe Abercrombie’s The First Law trilogy. Epic in scope, it is very much character driven, has strong grimdark elements, and plenty of dark humour. Recent comparison could be made with Godblind by Anna Stephens.

Kareem said: “Much to my regret I came to reading novels late in life (I believe I was twenty-five) but after picking up a fourth edition omnibus of The Lord of the Rings I have not been without a book since. The more I read the more I wondered if I could write an exciting book. I had an idea for a short story and after writing it decided there was a much bigger tale to tell. Four years later Death’s Wake, a marriage of my comic book/graphic novel love, and epic fantasy was written.  I fell in love with writing, with the craft as much as the story telling. As a result I enrolled in a Literature and Creative Writing degree with the Open University. I’m delighted to say I recently achieved a first class distinction for my second year CW module, and have been encouraged to submit two pieces I scored particularly high in. One, a historical fiction piece that takes place in Dark Age Britain, is called Faith and Sacrifice. The other is a horror/fantasy called To Grow a Monster that I hope to publish in the near future.”

John Jarrold said: “I see around thirty-five agency submissions every week and maybe four times a year something really leaps out at me.  The depth of characterisation and wonderful invention in Kareem’s novel gripped me and had me emotionally invested throughout.  It’s dark – and humorous – and quite fascinating. He’s special.”


Kareem is the Health and Fitness manager at a health centre in Lincolnshire. He is also the administrator of the Fantasy Writers Bar group on Facebook and a member of The Fantasy Hive team ( . He is on Twitter at: @OfWolfandMouse



• July 30th, 2018 • Posted in News


Long time SF and Fantasy novelist, and master of alternative history Harry Turtledove has joined the John Jarrold Literary Agency for UK and Commonwealth rights.


Publisher’s Weekly dubbed Turtledove “The Master of Alternate History”. Within that genre, he is known for creating original alternative history scenarios, such as survival of the Byzantine Empire or an alien invasion in the middle of the Second World War. In addition, he has been credited with giving original treatment to alternative themes previously dealt with by many others, such as the victory of the South in the American Civil War or the victory of Nazi Germany in the Second World War. His novels have been credited with bringing alternative history into the mainstream. He bases his alternative history on scenes of military combat and warfare.


John Jarrold said: “I am so delighted to be working again with Harry, having published his DARKNESS series at Earthlight. I first read his work with the Videssos novels and  he is both prolific and an outstanding writer. His knowledge of history and intensely involving writing make him a star who I’m proud to welcome to the John Jarrold Literary Agency – we have a number of projects to discuss with publishers.”

• June 14th, 2018 • Posted in News