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#1 Common

Jeremy Szal



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09 June 2020
Series: Common
GALAXY BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Written by one of our long-time customers, this is a treat for Space Opera fans (and more). I'm reading an early copy now and it's like a dark Blade Runner (that grimy, worn over-populated, under-cared for, neon-punk noir) meets Full Metal Jacket (The horrors soldiers see and do, that taints them forever - and how they deal with that, during and after the fighting - there's some pretty dark stuff in there that adds a lot of substance). There are also some refreshing new ideas (alien DNA injected to make super-soldiers) that are well thought out and cleverly woven into this surprisingly human narrative. This one is worth a look. Craig Slater


Vakov Fukasawa used to be a Reaper: a bio-enhanced soldier fighting for the Harmony, against a brutal invading empire. He's still fighting now, on a different battlefield: taking on stormtech. To make him a perfect soldier, Harmony injected him with the DNA of an extinct alien race, altering his body chemistry and leaving him permanently addicted to adrenaline and aggression. But although they meant to create soldiers, at the same time Harmony created a new drug market that has millions hopelessly addicted to their own body chemistry.

Vakov may have walked away from Harmony, but they still know where to find him, and his former Reaper colleagues are being murdered by someone, or something - and Vakov is appalled to learn his estranged brother is involved. Suddenly it's an investigation he can't turn down . . . but the closer he comes to the truth, the more addicted to stormtech he becomes.

And it's possible the war isn't over, after all . . .

Imprint:   Gollancz
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 232mm,  Width: 154mm,  Spine: 50mm
Weight:   660g
ISBN:   9781473227422
ISBN 10:   1473227429
Series:   Common
Pages:   320
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Jeremy Szal's SF tales have been published 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 lives in Sydney, Australia, and 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.

Reviews for Stormblood (#1 Common)

The prose was visceral, the plot packed a punch and the emotional scenes aimed for the gut. Jeremy just burst through the door and blew away the competition with this powerful action sci-fi debut * Gray Williams, author of END OF THE LINE * STORMBLOOD is sci-fi with an edge. It's a gritty, action-packed story that fans of Richard Morgan will eat right up, but it's got a ton of heart as well. The characters - especially Vakov - are exceptional, and the future-noir setting is extremely well-crafted. You'll want two things when you're finished this book: a glass of gin and a sequel. * Nicholas Eames, author of KINGS OF THE WYLDE * The prose was visceral, the plot packed a punch and the emotional scenes aimed for the gut. Jeremy just burst through the door and blew away the competition with this powerful action sci-fi debut * Gray Williams, author of END OF THE LINE * Highly recommended, a visceral trip into the darker side of SF. . .a rich setting replete with many alien races and a constant undertone of threat * Jamie Sawyer, Author of THE LAZARUS WAR * Delivers visceral, bone-crunching fight sequences and a strong emotional core * SFX * An intriguing mix of rich worldbuilding, meaty twists and ballistic ultraviolence * SFX * Vakov Fukasawa is a former soldier, addicted to the biotech inside his own body that makes him constantly crave for action. And there is plenty of action in this fast moving novel, but not at the expense of ideas, or of humanity, or of vivid descriptions of Szal's carefully imagined war-torn galaxy * Chris Beckett * Razor sharp and vicious, Stormblood is an adrenaline-driven vision of a dark future. Highly recommended! * Michael R. Fletcher * Szal's world is an insane, twisted place, and STORMBLOOD is one of the best scifi stories you'll ever read * Rob Boffard * This frenetic, grisly sucker-punch of a book manages to be everything you could want from sci-fi, while also carving out its own niche with a rusty slingshiv. * Fantasy Book Review * Stormblood feels like a superb combination of the actions in Red Rising Saga and the world-building of Mass Effect. Exciting, thought-provoking, and full of incredibly intense moments. Military sci-fi readers would be treating themselves well by putting Stormblood on their radar * Novel Notions * A magnificent and explosive adrenaline-fest . . . Szal's debut is an absolute must read for fans of gritty, action-packed, detective and military SF * Grimdark Magazine * A captivating military sci-fi debut. Stormblood tells a splendid story about two brothers divided by war that is full of comradeship, actions, and conflict * Novel Notions * STORMBLOOD is a high stakes adrenaline filled adventure featuring two estranged brothers suddenly on opposite ends of an addict's war. And it's real damn good * Nick Martell, author of THE KINGDOM OF LIARS *

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