One of the coolest things about being a writer and having a lot of writer friends is the opportunity to read and critique great stories long before they ever sell to publishers. Stories like David Walton’s Quintessence, just released from Tor Books.
I got to read and critique this novel a few years back. I was not the least bit surprised when David later announced that it had sold to Tor. It seriously rocks.
Here’s the jacket blurb:
Imagine an Age of Exploration full of alchemy, human dissection, sea monsters, betrayal, torture, religious controversy, and magic. In Europe, the magic is thin, but at the edge of the world, where the stars reach down close to the Earth, wonders abound. This drives the bravest explorers to the alluring Western Ocean. Christopher Sinclair is an alchemist who cares only about one thing: quintessence, a substance he believes will grant magical powers and immortality. And he has a ship.
This is a wondrously imaginative world David has created. Do check it out.