Company Town - Tor/Forge Blog



New Releases: 7/18/17

Happy New Release Day! Here’s what went on sale today.

Arabella and the Battle of Venus by David D. Levine

Placeholder of  -68 Arabella’s wedding plans to marry Captain Singh of the Honorable Mars Trading Company are interrupted when her fiancé is captured by the French and sent to a prisoner-of-war camp on swampy Venus. Now, Arabella must find passage to an enemy-controlled planet in the middle of a war, bribe or fight her way past vicious guards, and rescue her Captain.

Graveyard Shift by Michael F. Haspil

Image Place holder  of - 56 Alex Menkaure, former pharaoh and mummy, and his vampire partner, Marcus, born in ancient Rome, are vice cops in a special Miami police unit. They fight to keep the streets safe from criminal vampires, shape-shifters, bootleg blood-dealers, and anti-vampire vigilantes.

When poisoned artificial blood drives vampires to murder, the city threatens to tear itself apart. Only an unlikely alliance with former opponents can give Alex and Marcus a fighting chance against an ancient vampire conspiracy.


Company Town by Madeline Ashby

Place holder  of - 30 Hwa is of the few people in her community to forgo bio-engineered enhancements. As such, she’s the last truly organic person left on the rig—making her doubly an outsider, as well as a neglected daughter and bodyguard extraordinaire. Still, her expertise in the arts of self-defense and her record as a fighter mean that her services are yet in high demand. When the youngest Lynch needs training and protection, the family turns to Hwa. But can even she protect against increasingly intense death threats seemingly coming from another timeline?

One Year After by William R. Forstchen

Image Placeholder of - 71 Months before publication, William R. Forstchen’s One Second After was cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read. This thrilling follow-up to that smash hit begins one year after One Second After ends, two years since nuclear weapons were detonated above the United States and brought America to its knees. After months of suffering starvation, war, and countless deaths, the survivors of Black Mountain, North Carolina, are beginning to recover technology and supplies they had once taken for granted. When a “federal administrator” arrives in a nearby city, they dare to hope that a new national government is finally emerging.



Hana & Hina After School Vol. 2 Story and art by Milk Morinaga

Lord Marksman and Vanadis Vol. 4 Story by Tsukasa Kawaguchi; Art by Nobuhiko Yanai

Magika Swordsman and Summoner Vol. 7 Story by Mitsuki Mihara; Art by MonRin


Tor Books Announces Programming for San Diego Comic-Con 2016


sdccTor-logoaTor Books is heading to San Diego Comic-Con!

Once again Tor (Booth #2707) continues our wildly popular *in-booth signings and giveaways, offering you a chance to meet your favorite authors up close and personal and pick up free books. We’ve got a great line up including appearances by: V. E. Schwab, Thomas Olde Heuvelt, Mary Robinette Kowal, and more!

For excerpts, a spotlight on our newest authors, panel schedules, giveaway times and much more, please visit And make sure to follow @TorBooks on Twitter for up to date information and last minute events.


  • 1:30pm – 2:30pm Nerd Trivia Challenge: Author Edition, Horton Grand Theatre
    Nerd Trivia Challenge is a one-hour game show featuring three teams of today’s biggest authors competing for the chance to be the champions of nerdy knowledge. Authors V. E. Schwab (A Gathering of Shadows), Patrick Rothfuss, Pierce Brown, and more test their knowledge of everything from Marvel Universe characters to Harry Potter. Moderated by Brandon T. Snider.
  • 2:00pm Tor Booth (#2707) Signing: Thomas Olde Heuvelt, HEX
  • 3:00pm – 4:00pm Fantasy Mixology: The Perfect Literary Cocktail, Horton Grand While the average happy hour involves a bit of gin, rum, or vodka, these authors mix things up with witches, demons, giants, ghosts, Celtic gods, and other magical beings. Top-shelf authors Paul Cornell (Witches of Lychford), Mary Robinette Kowal (Ghost Talkers and The Glamourist Histories), Kevin Hearne, and more discuss the ingredients that go into making your favorite fantasy cocktails. Moderated by Petra Mayer from NPR.


  • 2:00pm Tor Booth (#2707) Signing: Madeline Ashby, Company Town
  • 2:30pm Spotlight on Seanan McGuire, Room 24ABC 
    This panel has traveled from Australia to Ireland, and now it’s coming to San Diego Comic-Con! Part Q&A, part stand-up comedy, part serious discussion, the only way to know what will be said is to show up and ask questions. For this one-hour period, Seanan McGuire (Every Heart a Doorway) will answer anything you care to ask her (although, as a warning, the answers will rarely be as simple as might be expected). There may be prizes for particularly good questions, depending on how much room she has in her suitcase.
  • 3:00pm – 4:00pm Sweet Dreams Aren’t Made of These: Horror and Thriller Authors Bring Your Nightmares to Life, Room 29AB
    Authors in the horror and thriller genres are more than just talented writers. They have to be masters of psychology, understanding what makes us most terrified and portraying worlds and scenarios that strike at the very core of our deepest and darkest fears. Thomas Olde Heuvelt (HEX), Del Howison, Amy Lukavics, and more as they discuss the best ways to scare you.
  • 4:30pm – 5:30pm Science Fiction/Future Now, Room 26AB
    Science fiction has ever been the muse of real-world advances, but now ideas can be achieved almost as soon as they are thought up. So how do writers, out-dream the dream makers? How do writers handle the truth of real science and the fiction that is needed for writing their stories? Is it a crisis for the writer’s imagination? Or does it serve to inspire? Join Madeline Ashby (Company Town), Javier Grillo-Marxuach, Sherri L Smith, and more in a roundtable discussion as they take this subject on.
  • 5:00pm Tor Booth (#2707) Signing: Mary Robinette Kowal, Ghost Talkers
  • 5:00pm Autographing Area, Table AA09 Signing: Thomas Olde Heuvelt (HEX)
  • 6:00pm – 7:00pm The Annual International Association of Media Tie-In Writers Awards Panel, Room 28DE
    Max Allan Collins, co-founder of the IAMTW, hosts this year’s Scribe Awards for excellence in tie-in writing, including honoring this year’s Grandmaster Award “Faust” winner, Timothy Zahn. Panelists Adam Christopher, Nancy HolderJonathan Maberry, and more engage in a freewheeling look at one of the most popular and yet underappreciated branches of the writing trade.


  • 12:00pm – 1:00pm The Female Geek: Women as Fans and Creators, Room 7AB 
    Featuring: Madeline Ashby (Company Town) There’s more to being a geek girl than meets the eye. From Princess Leia, to Katniss Everdeen, to Hermione Granger, fandom is full of awesome female characters-but what about the women who create these iconic individuals? Leigh Bardugo, Sabaa Tahir, Kiersten White, and more discuss feminism and fandom in a panel moderated by Madeline Ashby (Company Town).
  • 1:30pm – 2:30pm Autographing Area, Table AA09 Signing: Madeline Ashby (Company Town)
  • 2:00pm – 3:00pm Worldbuilding: Creating Realistic Fantasy Settings, Room 9
    Words are important. But how are they made? Claudia Christian (Wolf’s Empire: Gladiator)Seanan McGuire (, Every Heart a Doorway), and more discuss how they set the stage for their stories and explore the dos and don’ts of building a living, breathing world for their characters in a panel moderated by Cindy Pon (Serpentine).


  • 3:45pm – 4:45pm What’s Hot in Young Adult Fiction, Room 5AB
    Strong protagonists, engrossing romance, humor, action, and angst! Join us for this popular annual chat about the hottest new titles and trends in YA fiction. Moderated by Nathan Bransford and featuring Victoria Schwab (A Darker Shade of Magic), Renee Ahdieh, Victoria Aveyard, Michelle Hodkin, and more.

All Tor Booth signings are on a first come first serve basis and while supplies lasts. Limit one book per person.


New Releases: 5/17/16

Here’s what went on sale today!

Cape Hell by Loren D. Estleman

Cape Hell by Loren D. EstlemanU. S. Deputy Page Murdock is ordered by Federal Judge Harlan A. Blackthorne to Cape Hell, Mexico, to verify a report that former Confederate Captain Oscar Childress is raising an army to take over Mexico City—and then intends to turn north to rekindle the Civil War.

With only Hector Cansado, an engineer who can’t be trusted and Joseph, a Native American fireman with a few secrets of his own, Murdock hurtles through the murderous desert of a foreign land toward a man bent on wholesale massacre . . . unless Murdock can stop him.

Company Town by Madeline Ashby

Company Town by Madeline AshbyHwa is of the few people in her community (which constitutes the whole rig) to forgo bio-engineered enhancements. As such, she’s the last truly organic person left on the rig–making her doubly an outsider, as well as a neglected daughter and bodyguard extraordinaire. Still, her expertise in the arts of self-defense and her record as a fighter mean that her services are yet in high demand. When the youngest Lynch needs training and protection, the family turns to Hwa. But can even she protect against increasingly intense death threats seemingly coming from another timeline?

Zigzag by Bill Pronzini

Zigzag by Bill PronziniTwo novellas and two short stories featuring Mystery Writers of America Grandmaster Bill Pronzini’s iconic Nameless Detective!

Zigzag is an original novella, in which a safe and simple accident investigation becomes the unraveling of a twisted murder scheme.

Grapplin, which first appeared in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine, deals with the kind of missing person case that can end in only one of two ways, closure or heartbreak.


Runtime by S.B. Divya

Runtime by S.B. DivyaThe Minerva Sierra Challenge is a grueling spectacle, the cyborg’s Tour de France. Rich thrill-seekers with corporate sponsorships, extensive support teams, and top-of-the-line exoskeletal and internal augmentations pit themselves against the elements in a day-long race across the Sierra Nevada.

Marmeg Guinto doesn’t have funding, and she doesn’t have support. She cobbled her gear together from parts she found in rich people’s garbage and spent the money her mother wanted her to use for nursing school to enter the race. But the Minerva Challenge is the only chance she has at a better life for herself and her younger brothers, and she’s ready to risk it all.


Devils and Realist Vol. 9 Story by Madoka Takadono; Illustrated by Utako Yukihiro

Monster Musume: I Heart Monster Girls Vol. 1 by OKAYADO

Tomodachi x Monster Vol. 2 by Yoshihiko Inui

See upcoming releases.


The Privilege of Picking Your Pain

Company TownWritten by Madeline Ashby

I did not expect to be the kind of person who wakes up early for bootcamp. And really, I’m not that kind of person at all. Most mornings, the asthmatic bookworm in me riots in protest of my crawling out of bed and pulling on my leggings. She is my inner child and the most athletic thing she ever did was theater camp. She remains deeply suspicious of physical activity; she remembers asthma attacks, migraines, coughing so hard she threw up. She remembers being picked last for every team—except for dodgeball, because she was too short to be hit reliably and remained standing at the end of most rounds. “This wasn’t supposed to happen,” she says. “Adulthood wasn’t supposed to be like this. Why do we still have to go to gym?!”

She says it during burpees. She says it during mountain-climbers. She says it during push-ups and squats and lunges. She says it crunching through the snow and in the thick summer heat. She says it while we try on clothes. She says it when we see ourselves in the mirror.

I remind her that being an adult means choosing some of the pain that you’re in. In one of my favourite books, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, Haruki Murakami says: “An unhealthy soul requires a healthy body.” He was talking about his experience of being a novelist, of un-corking the “poison” within himself and letting it rise up and into his work. Writers draw on all life experiences, even (especially) the bad ones. To keep those poisonous memories and emotions from permeating him and his life, Murakami felt compelled to sweat them out, the way the body does any other toxin.

I took up bootcamp while re-writing and editing my latest novel, Company Town. It tells the story of Go Jung-hwa, a half-Korean bodyguard for the United Sex Workers of Canada. She lives on a city-sized oil rig 500 km from St John’s, Newfoundland. Having once dreamed of re-patriating to Korea with her half-brother via the army, Hwa keeps up her fitness long after his death. She even becomes a fitness instructor, and part of her new job for the company who buys her town (see what I did, there?) is teaching adolescent genius Joel Lynch how to defend himself and how to keep himself healthy.

Writing about the body at work is uniquely difficult. There are certain things most readers will understand: the icy cold wash of fear through the stomach, the sweet hot ache of arousal, the empty grasping fist of hunger, the sting of sudden and shameful tears. But trying to describe what Pigeon Pose feels like, or how to execute a complicated hooking back-kick, that’s a lot tougher. One early reader of the novel had no idea what “navel to spine” meant, simply because he’d never done that type of core exercise before. But for Hwa, regular exercise is a necessary part of understanding her body and putting it to good use—whether that use is defending her friends or kicking some ass. Often those two overlap.

What I’m saying is, I felt like a jackass writing about this incredibly active person and not being active myself. Recently I went to my first boxing gym, and now I feel like a jackass about that, too. Why didn’t I visit one as I was writing the book? Was I really that scared? (I was really that scared.)

But as it turns out, I needn’t have been scared at all. Overwhelmingly, the people I’ve met at my gyms, both my regular and the boxing gym, have been kind and welcoming. Just as kind and just as welcoming as the SFF community, actually, albeit in a different way. In the end, both crowds are on a journey, and they understand others to be on a journey, too. And, crucially, they understand how hard that road can be. So in the gym or at the con, I find that most people are there to support each other.

So don’t be scared. If you have a goal—any goal, whether it’s to write a novel or to get strong or to live in Paris or to finally tell your bigoted relatives on Facebook exactly how you feel—don’t be afraid. Yes, it is going to hurt. Yes, it is going to suck. But pain is not the end. Pain is the beginning. And triumph is the end.

Pre-order Company Town today:
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Books-a-Million | iBooks | Indiebound | Powell’s

Don’t forget to follow Madeline Ashby on Twitter!


Sneak Peek: Company Town by Madeline Ashby

Company Town by Madeline AshbyIn Company Town by Madeline Ashby, New Arcadia is a city-sized oil rig off the coast of the Canadian Maritimes, now owned by one very wealthy, powerful, byzantine family: Lynch Ltd. But a series of interconnected murders threatens the city’s stability and heightens the unease of a rig turning over. Hwa is of the few people in her community to forgo bio-engineered enhancements. As such, she’s the last truly organic person left on the rig–making her doubly an outsider, as well as a neglected daughter and bodyguard extraordinaire.

In the end, will Hwa decide to save the people of a town that can’t be saved, or save herself?

Chapter 1

Broken Nose

Hwa wondered if today was the day she would finally get to finish that sorry son of a bitch once and for all. She checked her watch. Eileen was officially late. She pinged. Waited. No answer. The client had paid for another tier of service, one where a bodyguard would keep a discreet distance. That tier was only for clients with trusted status. In Hwa’s experience, that trust could be a mistake. If the tower had recognized her face, Belle du Jour would have pinged the client and told him to finish up because she was on her way. But the towers never saw her face. And neither did some of the clients’ filters. That was part of her value to the organization. They simply didn’t see her coming until it was too late.

She checked the hallway. Just a few stragglers: kids on their way to school, jostling each other at the elevators. No big guys. No roughnecks. No riggers. Nobody who would give her trouble if she was already in the process of making it for Eileen’s client. Ideal conditions.

Hwa spoke into her watch: “Belle, my safecall is late; proceeding to contact.”


The owner of this website has made a commitment to accessibility and inclusion, please report any problems that you encounter using the contact form on this website. This site uses the WP ADA Compliance Check plugin to enhance accessibility.