Thorn of Emberlain pushed back to undetermined release date

In an update published by Scott Lynch’s publisher Gollancz, the author informs his readers, who were eagerly awaiting the publication of The Thorn of Emberlain, tentatively slotted for September 22, 2016, in the UK, that the release date is pushed back to an undetermined date. Lynch explains:

I am incredibly sorry about this, and I want it to be understood that there’s nobody to blame but me. In addition to the expected obstacles, I severely complicated my life this year by moving. The process of seeking a mortgage, securing a house, and moving across half a continent (although it was necessary, and has been mostly joyful) has eaten months of my time and made it very difficult to recover lost ground on several projects. Oh– Elizabeth Bear and I are getting married, too. Another real joy, but it’s eating spare time like you wouldn’t believe.

Scott is still scheduled to appear in September at Fantasycon-by-the-Sea in the UK and in October at IceCon in Iceland.

We’ll get back to you when we hear more.

93 thoughts on “Thorn of Emberlain pushed back to undetermined release date”

  1. Well, I am so disappointed..I am giving up on this series. I realize that life happens, …. it happens to all of us. I wish you the best Mr. Lynch.

    1. Hi Carol. I do understand your disappointment. But I don’t think you should give up. The trick is to find something else to read/do in the meantime and then the time will come… We’ve been through this before. And this time we know the book is probably finished and at some stage of final editing. Hang in there! 😀

      1. Ha! What makes you think that? This is just classic lynch. If this next book gets published I pronounce she it will be the last for a long long time. Women ruin men and with upcoming nuptials he’ll never write again, unless they get divorced.

        1. she herself is a writer…thats idiotic.

          Scott will be done before 2017. which means the gap between ROT and thorn will be like..4 years. big deal. grow up babies. hes a YOUNG author, one who has life priorities and not as much success as some of you fantasize writers have.

    2. Like others have said, the easiest thing to do with a series is just check in once in a blue moon to see if there are new books. In the meantime, go find something great to read. If you like Lynch you’ll possibly also enjoy K. J Parker, Matthew Woodring Stover, Chris Wooding and so many many others.

      1. I agree, and it’s nice to see someone putting out recommendations aswell. It SUCKS that it’s been put back but this is the nature of writing.

      2. Could not agree more with Bryce and the other comments echoing this. I would be more than happy to devour a new book every week but I understand perfectly that Mr. Lynch had to delay. When you do publish the next entry I will be happy to pick it up.

        Also thank you to Bryce for the recommendations, discovering authors I haven’t previously read (new or otherwise) is always the most difficult so I will be sure to check the ones you’ve mentioned out.

        1. That’s not fair, Robert Jordan left ano EXTREMELY large number of notes so that Brandon sanderson’s basically just had to link them together.

          1. Uh.. no. The last WoT is clearly Sandersons style, not Jordan’s. Jordan may have left a few plot notes but you do Sanderson a great disservice as sn author to suggest he just had to ‘string them together’.

    3. Can’t wait a few months? Can’t fill your time reading any of a hundred thousand other books, watching tv, making new friends? Got to throw your hands up in frustration and write the whole thing off? Seriously?

      1. It’s not that people don’t have anything else to do! It’s that growing up, a book had a beginning and an end. Now all the writers hook you into buying numerous books of theirs by writing a series. I get it. But then don’t just hook people and leave them hanging. It’s simply rude!

    4. I remember gay time I got married, bought a house, and had a kid….. I went to work the next day. I’m in the Army. So I have no idea how tough writing is.

  2. I completely understand you’re struggles and you are way to good of an author for me to give up on waiting to see what you conjure from thin air your a great writer even if i have to wait I know it’ll be worth it

  3. I am so very disappointed. Not about the pushing back of the book, but for the feeling that something is gone wrong down the line because of all this. I just received an email from amazon cancelling my booking in advance since dicemeber 2015 for the kindle version of the book. And there is no waiting, just you cannot buy anymore the digital version. Now I can only buy the “physical copy” of the book!!!!! (of which I am not interested at all… because I don’t have anymore physical space for books and I live in spain…)

    I feel like a I just received a kick in my teeth for supporting the author, and getting nothing in return. I don’t know if it is amazon, or the publishing company or the author. I am just feeling of not supporting any more these practices.

    1. I do understand the disappointment, but the issue with the “physical copy” probably is an Amazon issue. I am sure that the moment Scott’s publisher announces a new date you’ll be able to place a pre-order for the digital version again.


    Actually though dude you’re my favorite author and I feel no disappointment hearing that you’re doing things that make you happy outside of books. Don’t get me wrong, I’m as ready to rob a noblemen of ToEmberlain’s prized first edition as the next guy, but this is the good type of bad news that I’m always glad to hear. As long as you’re writing I’m happy to wait, and in the mean time push the gospel of the Unnamed 13th on half the people I meet!

    1. Hear hear…I rave about the sequence. I can wait and look forward to thr next offering or in Lockes case act of devotion. I’m happy for SL that the delays are for positive reasons.

  5. Suck it up butter cup! This is your job! Write the book or don’t, but stop the pity party. Other authors seem to produce.

    I wish I had never started the series!

    1. Please don’t be a so unsympathetic. Yes, this is Mr. Lynch’s job, but he is a human being before he is an author. We all have times when life is busy and things we want to do needs to be pushed back. Have some patience for him. I’m certain that the new book will be worth the wait.

      1. Here Here and honestly “suck it up buttercup”, suck it up and grow the f up, complaining about release dates on epic fantasy of this scale is just part of the anticipation and eventual pay off, not to mention, I want the best possible product there can be, this ain’t some cookie cutter series…

    1. Abercrombie seems to put books out on a yearly basis, and they’re all just as good as Lynch’s.

      (Frankly, they’re spectacular.)

      And then there’s Charles Soule; not only does he write a wide variety of truly excellent comics, *he’s a practicing attorney*.

      It’s a part of life. People regularly buy houses and move into them while, y’know, *working*. They plan weddings, too. They aren’t given the luxury of putting things off.

      Scott, manage your time, and if something’s going to waste a lot of it, hire someone to do it for you. No writer should have to think twice about a mortgage. They should be hiring a lawyer to do it for them.

      (Maybe Charles Soule?)

    2. Definitely got a good chortle out of the robot comment! Bummed about the date being pushed back too. I have literally been counting down the days, since the original July (?) release date, which was pushed back to Sept to go with the UK con. Reread the entire series in July, and I’ve been trying to find something new to fill the void, but nothing seems to measure up. No point in getting pissed about it, I guess. It’ll now be a Rothfuss/Lynch race, to see who publishes first.

    3. I consider Sanderson more of a machine than a robot, the thing that he excels at, besides writing, is making sure he keeps regular progress updates, so situations like this don’t tend to happen. Fortunately for better or worse all authors are different, not only about what they write, but how they work in general and how the see deadlines is just part of the package.

  6. Really glad I made a point top re-read the current series in preparation for the new book! GRRM all over again… *smdh*

    In all seriousness, so much congratulations are in order, but learn to manage your time better, yeah?

  7. Nah. He probably just started writing it a week ago. Meanwhile we’re all stuck on the hype train. Oh boy, a map! Hrmm. Ok, hype car? He could at least feed us an excerpt or short story that sets up the new plot or introduces us to a new character. It couldn’t possibly take 6 years to write an excerpt/dossier. Could it?

  8. Yep, I’m also done with this series. This is just ridiculous. With all due respect to the arts and to Lynch’s incredible work, but this is just flakey beyond description. I wish Scott Lynch and the Gentleman Bastards the best of luck, but I’m out.

  9. Seems shady, editors would have had the book months ago for a 9/22 release date, and even with a chaotic move I’m sure the release could have gone forward with very little effort from Lynch unless there are other problems. Less than a month before we get this announcement? Oh well, plenty of other stuff to read and hopefully we’ll eventually get this book but my guess is it’s not really done. But if he’s doing better that’s all that matters, even if we have to wait or never get another book.

  10. People, chill. When you read the book doesn’t matter so much. We will get it soon enough. Let the man live his life as he sees fit. He isn’t required to live up to your standards in the slightest. The reason a few of you are so disappointed is because the books are that good. Would you rather this next installment come out prematurely and be of poor form? Please. Settle down and let the man be.

    And I bet that whenever the book does come out, every single one of you that is saying you’re “done” will read the book.

    Can’t wait for the book and congrats on the move, marriage, and shall I say mortgage? Probably not mortgage but still.

    1. Entitlement is indeed a thing amongst general readerships, but I don’t think that’s what is driving the majority of the comments in this thread. Speaking for myself, it’s the constant promising of release dates only to cancel and push it back at the last minute. What they did here with announcing an undetermined future date is what they should have done ages ago. It’s just discourteous to the readers that comprise your fan base.

      1. This.
        I do not mind the waiting, take your time Mr. Lynch and take care of all your things happening in your life, that is your and everyone elses main priority.

        I will be happy to read the book once it is finished, and yeah I would prefer it yesterday, but please stop giving us a new release date on a regular basis.
        Based on the “Release note” in May it sounded as if the book is done and that is what gets mine and prolly everyone elses knickers in a twist, as the new push back sounds like the book needs to written at this time.

        And to end this on a happy note, Congratulations! and all the best for your upcoming nuptials.

    2. Agree with almost everything said, but for anyone in this business a certain amount of catering to his fan base is all part of the game, even though I don’t agree with all the people going nuts over the delay, I can understand the sentiment even if I deplore the childish nature of the negative comments, but just imho…

    3. I believe people wanted the original deadline, not a second or third deadline. Luckily I have Brent Weenks out in 3 weeks. Have to laugh that the novella is still listed as having come out last year.

    4. You are wrong. I am in my 60s and if I wait a year to complete a series, especially if I’ve read numerous others in between, I have to go back through them all just to remember what the h… happened!

  11. The situation is what it is. There are so few series that really capture my imagination that I will continue to wait patiently for the next; I figure complaining will not make him write faster. At least Scott has been open about the entire thing and provides occasional updates; some authors do not extend that courtesy.

  12. Spider- since you seem to be in the know, what are we talking about here?

    If the release date was 9/22 as of May, it’s safe to say that this isn’t total vaporware. Does it just need polish in the editing process? Has Scott discovered significant flaws and needs to rework it substantially?

    I guess what I’m asking is, do you believe we’ll see this in the next 6mo? Is the book in the editing process or is he still writing?

    I think a small peek behind the curtain could help here to assuage fears.

    1. I am not really “in the know” on this issue. The manuscript for ToE isn’t vaporware. It is probably stuck somewhere in the final editing process (by August the book should have been sent to printers). Your guess is as good as mine as to why exactly. To be honest , I started to doubt the date a while back because the US publisher was mute.

      But here is the kicker. At this point, even if Scott only is a few weeks away from finishing what needs finishing, I doubt the book can be fitted in the schedule anytime soon. September had been picked by the UK publisher because Scott could promote the book there at various conferences and events. Gollancz has already released its schedule for Winter and Spring. I doubt we’ll see ToE before Spring 2017. But again this is my guess; nothing more.

  13. I’m excited for you, Mr. Lynch. Congratulations on the upcoming nuptials, you both deserve everything you set your hearts on together and both are amazing authors in your own right. I’ve never purchased property before but that along with planning a wedding seems like as good of an excuse as anything for not publishing as soon as promised. You are young and talented and I’m certain we are going to read wonderful things soon.
    That said, I’ve only just discovered this series last month, and have devoured them, and was just looking online today when I saw that there was even a fourth book upcoming, so I’m excited that it’s on the horizon. I can’t wait to read the next adventures in the storyline (whenever the publication happens).
    Best of luck. Thank you for writing. Keep up the good work.

  14. I was really looking forward to reading the book this month. So disappointed. GRRMartan and Lynch are my favorite authors, why must both have such delays? Sigh, oh well, the wait continues.

  15. I’m not mad, just disappointed. I’m kind of glad they stopped promising dates, but it seems odd. It feels like it’s nowhere close now, and I wanted to read it in ten days time. Moving the release date is okay, it happens, but for the love of god don’t do it several times and maybe, if you change it, do it earlier than a month in advance.
    I’m gonna go cry into my copy of Lies, now.

    And then I’ll google if there’s any updates regarding ASOIAF or Kingkiller (Spoiler: Probably not.)

  16. I typically do not comment on things like this, but I’d like to attempt to put my finger on my disappointment as well as those who have commented before me. I personally am comfortable with significant delays between books. What bothers me is the continual violation of published deadlines. As a homeowner and as a service provider, I can only imagine the reaction if I indefinitely postponed delivery to my clients because I was in the process of buying my house one month before an agreed upon date.

    I fully recognize that as an author, there is no obligation to any particular patron. However, I choose not to supply funds to an artist who continually fails to meet the expectations that they themselves set forth. I’ll get the book from the library when and if it ever comes out, but I won’t purchase another book by this author. I do however wish him well with all of his life endeavors.

  17. I really can’t believe so many people are flat out giving up on this series because of a pushed release date. It’s far, far, far too good to give up on for something silly like that. Stephen King took from 1982 to 2004 to finish the Dark Tower series (in my opinion his finest work, having read over 40 of his novels and story collections), and Robert Jordan’s Wheel Of Time series took from 1990 until 2013, 6 years after Jordan’s death! I don’t remember nearly the level of frustration and entitlement presented then as I see these days directed at authors. Yes, I wish I had a copy of The Thorn Of Emberlain sitting on my coffee table right next to my imaginary copy of The Winds of Winter, but thems the breaks. We can’t always get the things we want right away, and in the meantime there are SO SO MANY other writers out there who would love it if you’d pick up a copy of their book to read while you wait for Lynch to present us with what I’m sure will be a great read. Bottom line, be patient and you’ll be rewarded. Also, congrats to Scott and Elizabeth, I’m really happy for you both!!!

    1. Half of the reason you did not see so much whining and complaining with king or Jordan was simply because there was not such easy access to platforms like this to do the anonymous complaining, websites and things like social media where still relative infants, again just imho…

  18. This is getting ridiculous. It took 6 years to get the last book. Now there is no telling when this book will be out. If I do finish this series it will be after the last book is published and I can pick up the series at a used bookstore for a dollar each. You guys set the expectations then can’t meet them over and over again. You guys are right about 1 thing, there are millions of other books out there to read that are produced and published by a team that has their stuff together and values its fan base.

  19. This ruined my week. I was preparing to get this book this weekend. It’s by far my favorite series and I’ve been looking forward to this since last year.

    Fuck you, sincerely, for going back on the date you promised.

  20. Wow, I’m disappointed but will definitely wait, there are plenty of books to read in the mean time.
    I love the gentleman bastard series and if the writer is sporadic with his timings then that’s his bag.
    If it’s 2020 Scott I’ll still be buying it.

  21. For fucks sake isn’t the book written already? On August 30, with a Sep 21 release date, the book should be in printing and distribution already. There shouldn’t be more editing of any kind to do. And if there was, then giving us a September release date was a bald lie. I love this series and I’ll definitely read the new book if you guys ever manage to get your shit together, but no way am I paying for it now. I’m not even gonna try to follow this anymore, if I happen to see it at the library some time next year I’ll pick it up

  22. I have made a few replies to some of the comments I have seen so I will keep this brief. Yes I to am disappointed at the delay, however after listening to the first 3 books in anticipation of the next release, (something I do with all of the really great series I keep up with) I am more than willing to wait until the book gets released before I ever make a truly negative comment, because the only thing that would make me do such a thing would be if he rushed his process(whatever that is) and put out a substandard product, which I doubt will happen, so I to recommend everyone chill pick up another story or 10 to tide you over till this release…

  23. I have officially learned my lesson when it comes to starting series that are new and not complete. Between GOT and and now GB I’ve been waiting years for 2 of my favorites. The one and only exception is the Storm light Archives and anything Brandon Sanderson writes. He cranks books out at an astonishing rate and the quality of his work is second to none. So to everyone out there who is just sick of waiting years and even decades for the next book to come out I urge you to check out Brandon Sanderson, he will not disappoint. And just wait until these other series are finished. If these authors start to loose money maybe they might get a fire lit under them.

  24. Shame. Shame. Shame. A book is a book and not our lives. Every artist is different and worthy. Mr. Lynch has nothing to apologize for. I suspect there are pressures from the publisher to set dates…..they want to make money. Live your lives, take a breath to source your anger…..these are tantrums from children upset because they didn’t get the candy they wanted. Disappointment is understandable, but we are adults. Walk a mile in his shoes… unto others…..whatever works, but rein yourselves in, people. Frankly, I am happy that Mr. Lynch is living his life. If he is happy and settled, then that is all that matters in his world. Look to your lives and find your own happiness.

    1. Yes, I shall look to my own life for happiness because I’m done. I cant reread these books each time we get close to the deadline only to have it pushed back.
      But good luck, I’m out.

  25. I’m guessing he needs to make a living. In his case, that means selling books. That means writing books.

    So get on with it and stop being so precious. You have a mortgage to pay for, right?

  26. The amount of whining and self entitlement in these comments is amusing yet also depressing. Aren’t there more mature ways to handle this delay than to proclaim that you’re essentially taking your ball and going home? I’m sure we’re all bummed the date was pushed back, but as adults, or anyone who’s not a toddler, let’s not overreact and throw a tantrum here.

    Scott, Congrats on your new adventures in life and looking forward to reading the fourth installment when it’s out. But if it’s not out by next year, I’m not only giving up reading your series, but I’m giving up reading stop signs, menus at Applebees, and warning labels on small electronics. Don’t ruin my life in pursuit of your career and life goals.

    Thanks for the stories!

    1. I think most of you have something on your nose. Be a man of your word. That’s all I ask. Yes I will read the book when it comes out. So everybody chill out. However turning into R R Martin is not cool.

  27. Hey man your series is Among the best I’ve ever read. Your audio books are really spectacular. Take however long you need to finish the book!! Some people dont appreciate that not only do you have to write a compelling story; you have to set up for the next one after that!

  28. Congrats Scott ! And take your time, nobody’s in a hurry.
    There are so many good books out there, and you know grown adults can wait and appreciate that you’re living your life.

  29. Quality crafting takes time and it is not often so easy to judge just how long.
    I rather you take the time you feel needed than rushing it out, anything else would be unfair to Locke.

    Ignore the knee jerk reactions, for that is what they are… jerks.

  30. Congratulations! But, oh good Scott Lynch, take all the time you need on condition that you actually release the book in our lifetime. 🙂

  31. I do not wish to take away from Lynch’s talent nor diminish his personal struggles and triumphs. But this book has been delayed on numerous occasions. To announce, yet again, that the novel was shelved without a clear expectation of a new publishing date is a disservice. It also casts both the publisher and Lynch in a negative light. By offering merely an “oops,” they are taking it on faith the readership will remain intact. I, for one, am out. This has nothing to do with entitlement but rather with disappointment. Yes, Mr. Lynch does not owe me anything, but his “bait and switch” antics over the last few years with deadlines has used up any intentions I had to purchase further releases. Simply put, do not promote a product you have no intentions to produce as it reeks of unprofessionalism and breeds distrust.

  32. From Scott Lynch’s blog, 5th August 2015:

    “With the utmost regret, we have been compelled to move The Thorn of Emberlain from its expected autumn 2015 release date to a 2016 date. I requested an opportunity to write this note so I could emphasize how little this is the fault of anyone but myself. My publishers around the world have, in fact, held the door open for a length of time that is somewhere between heroic and insane. The fault is mine; the severity of my ongoing anxiety attacks has simply made it impossible to turn the manuscript in and commit to the accelerated production process our original release date would have required.

    While this is not the outcome we’d hoped for, we have every expectation that this will ultimately do more good than harm. I will continue to try to keep you more closely informed of Thorn’s progress, and I don’t think it will be long before we’ll be able to announce that the manuscript is secure and the production process has begun. We’re very close.”

    As the regular readers of Mr Lynch know, he is not the most reliable when it comes to deadline. I understand that he suffers from anxiety. I understand that he has a life to lead, and things to do. What I don’t understand is why he would post that the production process has begun in August 2015, yet the book still doesn’t have a release date. If the problem is that Scott gets too anxious to let his manuscripts go (as he has stated on his blog, many times) then perhaps writing is not for him. His excellent books are of no earthly use to either him or his readers if they don’t get published.

    So I will twiddle my thumbs, hope to the heavens that Scott finally gets someone to prise his fingers off his manuscript long enough to get it published, read other, more reliable authors like Ben Aaronovitch, and await the next instalment of this series. I do hope Scott remembers that he won’t be able to afford that pesky mortgage if he doesn’t sell any books.

  33. Does anybody know if the audiobook will release with the book? With all three I’ve listened to it first (Michael Page is a phenomenal narrator) and then buy the book for reading again.

  34. Your books to date have given me enormous pleasure, thank you for that. As a reader a book is a pleasure, not an entitlement so it is a shame to hear of the delay but looking forward to it when it eventually lands.
    It’s funny that in the real world when people are not well or have significant issues, we give them the time to recover. Yet with an author it is different. I wish you the best in your new home, in your marriage and I hope you find the headspace to continue to write so well.

  35. You should be honest about what eats up your time. Didn’t I read that you spent more than 100+ hours playing some mind-numbing video game? It’s fine to change deadlines, but be honest with yourself. Life is so much better after you throw away your t.v. & gaming systems, & any other mind mushing junk that assists in wasting life away.

    1. So easy to judge isn’t it? I’m sure there’s no aspect of your life that might seem silly or wasteful to others right? Let the man live his life how he wants.

  36. Rome was not built in a day, and neither will this amazing series. Let the author do his work and enjoy his life at his leasure. After all, what is the point of an adventure if you don’t stop and see what’s out there.

  37. The problem isn’t SL living his life. THE PROBLEM stems from Lynch and his publisher advertising multiple release dates only to pull the football away when said date approaches. When this happens to movies and albums, it is a sign that the finished product is below standard. The criticism and negative attitudes are justified. If this was the first cancellation, yes, by all means I understand. But stringing along a readership is unprofessional and does nothing but erode a fan base.

  38. Writing is not easy, and I’d rather wait a few months more than to see a quickly and badly finished work. We are supporting you Mr. Lynch, and please: keep writing in that amazing style of yours!
    Regards from Italy

  39. Should I someday happen across ToE in a library then I will probably borrow it. I won’t buy any more of this author’s books, though. I am also going to have alarm bells ringing any time I see a Gollancz book, too.

    Sorry, it’s not personal, just a logical consequence.

  40. I just don’t understand why this is happening. I thought the book was finished? Why the need to push it back again? I honestly don’t care how long it takes to write the book, I’d rather wait and have the book be as good as it could possibly be, but at the same time I feel like our hopes keep getting raised just to keep dissapointing us. If it’s not done just say so…

  41. People keep talking about entitlement, when it is clear that most of the frustration displayed by people, stems from a string of broken promises. I would have absolutely no problem waiting as long as it takes for the book to be published, but please do not treat me like a fool by making promises that won’t be kept. I will opt to borrow this book from the library rather than purchasing it.

  42. With the latest news – an ending for TOE still has to be written – I feel kinda cheated and cancelled my preorder.
    You started great Scott, right before you lost it …
    Instead of publishing one fantasy release date after the other, you just should’ve said it isn’t done yet …

    As we say in german:
    Ehrlich währt am längsten!

  43. Cannot believe how negative some of the reviews are on here about the delays.

    Take your time Scott, I absolutely loved the others, get them right!!

    there should be an app, when you can put all your favourite authors in, and it’ll email you when they release a new one. In my case, when the audible is released. So far I’ve not found a better narration than the gentlemen bastards. And I’ve went through loads since the LoLL got me hooked.

  44. This sucks big time and I feel as let down as anyone. Authors do have an obligation to their fans. Now from experience, some level of stress and turmoil breeds great art or it can lead to localized anxiety and as Lynch has delt with this before, I imagine it’s a fine line to walk and I’d rather have a late book than no book.

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