Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon – cover smackdown!















In the red corner… the cover to Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon’s UK edition, as designed by Snowbooks’ supremo Emma Barnes. In the… well, it’s the sort of red and gold corner, the US edition from Tor’s art and design team under the head honcho-ship of Irene Gallo, with a wonderful illustration by Nekro.

But which one’s best..? There’s only one way to find out! COVER SMACKDOWN!

(Psst. You don’t have to choose. In fact, you could go out and buy both if you wanted… US edition out September 16, UK edition September 17. Go fill your little brass boots)

Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon – UK cover art

imageHere it is, the cover art for the UK Snowbooks edition of Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon, out on September 17th! As you can see, it’s in a very similar style to the first book, and kudos to Snowbooks head honcho for pulling off a beauty once again!


Gideon Smith swag: Rowena Fanshawe T-shirts on sale!


I’d imagine that if you’re of sound mind that you’d probably want to get your hands on one of these rather wonderful T-shirts that UK publisher Snowbooks has made to celebrate Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl.


The T-shirt design is in the form of an advertisement for the business of Rowena Fanshawe, the “Belle of the Airways” and dirigible pilot extraordinaire who appears in all three of the Gideon Smith books.


The legend reads: “Fanshawe Aeronautical Endeavours – No job too large, too small… or too perilous! Enquiries: Highgate Aerodrome, London”

It’s somewhat spiffing and although I’ve known the shirts have been in the works, I just spotted that Snowbooks has relaunched its website and they’re on sale now – just GB£19.99 in a variety of sizes to suit all steampunk body-shapes.

Get one in for your summer jollies now. And send me a pic of you wearing one in some exotic locale (Grimsby, Morecambe, that sort of thing) and I’ll post a selection on the site.

Click here for the direct link to the T-shirt and the Snowbooks home page is here.

100 days of Gideon Smith

20130720-150015.jpg20130225-224610.jpgToday marks 100 days since the publication of Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl by Tor Books in the US and Snowbooks in the UK.

I had no real idea what to expect when the book was published. I’ve had other novels out through independent presses, of course, but this was the first release through big, mainstream, commercial publishers.

I tried to manage my expectations. I am an unknown writer, especially in the US, and with the huge number of books being published I was quietly preparing for Gideon Smith to simply disappear among the overwhelming flood of everything else.

To say I’ve been utterly delighted at the response would be a massive understatement.

Gideon Smith has had, by my rough estimate, about 50 positive reviews in newspapers, magazines and on websites – and that’s not counting the feedback on Goodreads and Amazon.

People have been overwhelmingly lovely about the book. Especially gratifying are the reviews or messages from people who said things like “this is the perfect book for people who think they don’t like steampunk”, “I didn’t think this was going to be my thing, but…” and “this book was so much fun!”

I’m grateful beyond words to everyone who made this book happen: my agent John Jarrold, the team at Tor – my editor Claire Eddy, Bess Cozby, Leah Withers, Patrick Nielsen Hayden, Irene Gallo and artist Nekro, to name just a handful – and also Emma Barnes at Snowbooks, who has taken on Gideon as a personal project and recently bought the rights in the next two books in the series. Also my family for their support, and friends who’ve been so pleased for this happening. Those people who didn’t know me from Adam and loved and reviewed the book, and most of all those people who went out and bought it or borrowed it from their local library. You’re all brilliant.

I was made incredibly welcome by the steampunk community at the Haworth Steampunk Weekend, and I hope to make a repeat appearance next year, along with other events and cons.

Thanks also to all the famous people I admire who have had a copy of Gideon Smith forced upon them by me or one of my mates – off the top of my head they include Neil Gaiman, Jeremy Dyson, Mitch Benn, Jonathan Ross, Cory Doctorow, Paul Cornell… probably many others. Sorry for being a self-promoting pain in the arse, and thanks for being so gracious about it.

It’s been a brilliant three months or so for Gideon Smith, and I’m looking forward to Tor and Snowbooks publishing book two, Gideon Smith and the Brass Dragon, in September 2014, with book three to follow in 2015. After that… well, there are more Gideon tales to tell, but we’ll just have to wait and see how sales are going.

And if you haven’t read Gideon Smith and the Mechanical Girl yet… what the hell are you waiting for? Christmas?

UK deal announced for Gideon Smith books two and three

SB logoDelighted to announce, via my agent John Jarrold, that Snowbooks, who published the UK edition of GIDEON SMITH and the MECHANICAL GIRL have bought rights for UK editions of books two and three – GIDEON SMITH and the BRASS DRAGON and GIDEON SMITH and the MASK OF THE RIPPER. Full press release from John Jarrold below:


Emma Barnes, Managing Director at Snowbooks, has acquired UK rights in the second and third Gideon Smith steampunk novels by David Barnett from the rights department at Tor Books in New York, having published the first, GIDEON SMITH AND THE MECHANICAL GIRL, in September 2013 to good sales and reviews.

Emma Barnes said: “Snowbooks is enjoying good times at the moment, not least because our recent publication of the first in the Gideon Smith series has been widely acclaimed. We’re so thrilled that we will continue to be David’s publisher in the UK and look forward to doing his writing proud.”

David Barnett is an author and award-winning journalist. He was born in Wigan in 1970 and has worked in regional newspapers since he was 19 years old. He is currently Assistant Editor (Content) at the Telegraph & Argus in Bradford, West Yorkshire, following a 24 year career in newspapers, predominantly as a writer/editorial manager for regional newspapers but which has also included work for publications as diverse as the Daily Star and the Guardian Online. He is the author of three published novels, HINTERLAND (2005) and ANGELGLASS (2007 – described by the Guardian as “stunning”), both published by Immanion Press, and popCULT! (2011), Pendragon Press. In 2009 Immanion Press brought out a collection comprising a novella and 13 short stories, THE JANUS HOUSE AND OTHER TWO-FACED TALES. He is married to Claire, also an award-winning journalist, and they have two children, Charlie and Alice.

Agent John Jarrold sold World English Language rights in all three titles to Claire Eddy at Tor. The second book, GIDEON SMITH AND THE BRASS DRAGON, is due for publication in September 2014 on both sides of the Atlantic, with the third to follow a year later.

Contact John Jarrold or Emma Barnes for further details.

John Jarrold – e-mail: phone: 01522 510544
Emma Barnes – e-mail:

5th December 2013