Claire North - The Serpent - Little, Brown Book Group

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The Serpent

Gameshouse Novella 1

By Claire North

  • E-Book
  • £P.O.R.

From Claire North comes the first of three digital-only novellas set in the ingenious and thrilling world of the Gameshouse.

In seventeenth century Venice exists a mysterious establishment known only as the Gameshouse.

There, fortunes are made and fortunes are broken over games of chess, backgammon and every other game under the sun.

But those whom fortune favours may be invited to compete in the higher league . . . a league where the games played are of politics and empires, of economics and kings. It is a league where Capture the Castle involves real castles, where hide and seek takes place on a scale as big as the British Isles.

Not everyone proves worthy of competing in the higher league. But one woman who is about to play may just exceed everyone's expectations.

Though she must always remember: the higher the stakes, the more deadly the rules . . .

Biographical Notes

Claire North is a pseudonym for Catherine Webb, a Carnegie Medal-nominated author whose debut novel was written when she was just fourteen years old. She is fast establishing herself as one of the most powerful and imaginative voices in modern fiction. Her first book published under the Claire North pen name was The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August, which became a word-of-mouth bestseller and was shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award. The follow-up Touch received widespread critical acclaim and was described by the Independent as 'little short of a masterpiece'. Her next novel The Sudden Appearance of Hope won the 2017 World Fantasy Award for Best Novel, and her recent book The End of the Day has been shortlisted for the 2017 Sunday Times/PFD Young Writer of the Year Award. In addition to working on her next novel 84K, Claire is also one of three writers contributing to the upcoming Black Mirror book, which ties into Charlie Brooker's award-winning TV series. In between writing, Claire also works as a theatre lighting designer. She lives in London.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9780356504490
  • Publication date: 03 Nov 2015
  • Page count:
  • Imprint: Orbit
Simply brilliant. The trilogy is comprised of three novelettes... each with a different narrator, setting and - wonderfully - tense. All three feature players in the enigmatic Gameshouse - a location/organisation for those that gamble, and gamble to win...The Gameshouse, as a whole, is one of the best books of the year - a subtle masterpiece that deserves to sweep all the chips from the table. — Pornokitsch
Utterly readable, utterly believable and compelling . . . one of the fiction highlights of the decade — Judy Finnigan on THE FIRST FIFTEEN LIVES OF HARRY AUGUST
Beautiful and gripping — GUARDIAN on THE FIFST FIFTEEN LIVES OF HARRY AUGUST
An astonishing re-invention of the time-travel narrative. Bold, magical and masterful — M. R. Carey, author of THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS on THE FIRST FIFTEEN LIVES OF HARRY AUGUST
Beautifully written and structured . . . a remarkable book — BOOKLIST on THE FIRST FIFTEEN LIVES OF HARRY AUGUST
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Novella 1: The SerpentIn seventeenth century Venice exists a mysterious establishment known only as the Gameshouse. There, fortunes are made and fortunes are broken over games of chess, backgammon and every other game under the sun.But those whom fortune favours may be invited to compete in the higher league . . . a league where the games played are of politics and empires, of economics and kings. It is a league where Capture the Castle involves real castles, where hide and seek takes place on a scale as big as the British Isles.Not everyone proves worthy of competing in the higher league. But one woman who is about to play may just exceed everyone's expectations.Though she must always remember: the higher the stakes, the more deadly the rules . . .Novella 2: The ThiefThe Gameshouse is an unusual institution. Many know it as the place where fortunes can be made and lost though games of Chess, Backgammon - every game under the sun.But a select few, who are picked to compete in the higher league, know that some games are played for higher stakes - those of politics and empires, of economics and kings . . .In 1930s Bangkok, one higher league player has just been challenged to a game of hide and seek. The board is all of Thailand - and the seeker will use any means possible to hunt down his quarry - be it police, government, strangers or even spies . . .Novella 3: The MasterThe Gamehouse is an unusual institution. Many know it as the place where fortunes can be made and lost though games of Chess, Backgammon - every game under the sun.But a select few, who are picked to compete in the higher league, know that some games are played for higher stakes - those of politics and empires, of economics and kings . . .And now, the ultimate player is about to step forward.

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