Paul McAuley won the PHILIP K. DICK AWARD for his first novel and has gone on to win the ARTHUR C. CLARKE, SIDEWISE, BRITISH FANTASY and JOHN W. CAMPBELL AWARDs. He gave up his position as a research biologist to write full time. He lives in London.
The excitement of a new country appearing right here on Earth, a real possibility that is quite fascinating in itself, is doubled down here by way of a thrilling kidnap-and-rescue plot that ranges across this beautiful new landscape, showing how we will soon be not only terraforming Earth, but finding new ways to take care of each other. It's a vivid example of science fiction at its best. - Kim Stanley RobinsonOh boy, it's a good one. A cracking setup; great writing; great pacing; a genuinely fresh narrative voice, and for once - hooray! - a male author writing a complex, first-person female narrator who is neither a broflake's wet-dream, nor a wooden stereotype. Austral is big, strong, powerful, and yet with real vulnerabilities; a flawed and relatable heroine with agency, feelings and spirit. And to cap it all, Austral is fat - genetically edited to be fat in a way that enhances her strength and endurance, and in the context of her race, is only ever mentioned as a positive. Halleluia. It can be done.Cli-fi transcendent.An exquisite human story set on an undiscovered continent of our near future.Austral may be McAuley's best yet. And the best near-future novel yet written.Paul McAuley has quickened science fiction. The future has changed. - Stephen BaxterBleakly beautiful, Austral is both a finely-honed character study and a powerful evocation of landscape and change, delivered with icy clarity. This is the kind of fiction we will need as the Anthropocene takes hold.Moving and beautiful. A true novel of the Anthropocene. - James Bradley, author of THE CLADE