There is a lot to look forward to in 2012; it seems every year the range of genre on offer just gets stronger and stronger. So here is my list of what I’m looking forward to in the coming 12 months.

Books

The Wind Through The Keyhole by Stephen King – A new novel set during King’s Dark Tower sequence, said to cover events between Wizard And Glass and Wolves Of The Calla. I have some trepidation about this, for me the series went downhill after Wizard and lost its way. But King is still a fantastic writer and so this is on my list. Due out in April.

The Great North Road by Peter F Hamilton – A standalone epic set on a colony world. This is said to be Hamilton’s biggest book in a long while (an estimated 250,000+ words), and with it being nearly two years since Temporal Void it should be worth the wait. Comments he has made on his website hint that his next project is a return to the Void, with a new trilogy but set on a different planet and not including any previously seen characters. Due out in October.

Republic Of Thieves by Scott Lynch – The third title in The Gentlemen Bastard sequence. This book has been a long time coming – Red Seas Under Red Skies came out five years ago – due to Lynch’s health problems affecting his ability to write. At the end of the second book readers were left on a cliffhanger, with Locke Lamora having ingested a poison and the only antidote gone to the grave with its creator. Due out in October.

A Red Country by Joe Abercrombie – The third standalone set in the universe created with The First Law trilogy. According to posts on Abercrombie’s blog this novel will have the feel of the Old West, leading some commentators to speculate that this tale will be either set in the far south and feature Ferro – last seen at the end of Last Argument Of Kings demon possessed and bent on revenge against the Gurkish, or possibly set in the Old Empire with its frontier-like towns. No firm release date has been put out yet, Gollancz say late 2012.

The World Of Ice And Fire by George RR Martin, Elio Garcia and Linda Atonsson – Garcia and Atonsson run the popular Westeros.org website, and they have been working on this companion book the Martins A Song Of Ice And Fire series for some years. Martin himself has given a lot of input and time to this project; and the book is said to include extensive histories of the Seven Kingdoms, new maps – including a World Map, that may not include not yet seen regions around Asshai and the Jade Sea – and exclusive artwork by Ted Nasmith. Due out late 2012.

Dangerous Women edited by George RR Martin and Gardner Dozios – A new collection of short fantasy from some of the biggest names in the genre. Highlight for me will be the fourth Dunk & Egg story called The She-Wolves (or possibly The She-Wolves Of Winterfell), detailing Ser Duncan and Egg’s adventures in the Stark stronghold some eighty years before A Game Of Thrones. Due out late 2012.

 

TV

Supernatural S7 – The last half of season 7 started airing on January 6th in the US. The CW has ordered an additional episode making this season 23 episodes long. Whether the plan is to go out with a bang – there is as yet no news if there will be an 8th season – or they plan something extra special. This season has been a rough ride for fans, with the Winchester’s facing a threat that is seemingly unstoppable, the loss of Castiel and death of father-figure Bobby Singer.

The Walking Dead S2 – The second season is halfway through its run in the US and scheduled for Channel 5 in the UK during the summer. This was the breakout hit of 2011 with its premier breaking cable TV records.

Game of Thrones S2 – Due to be aired in April in the US – with a next day airing in the UK – the second season covers events in the second book of George RR Martin’s series, war has erupted in Westeros and five kings lay claim to the Iron Throne. Season 2 has an even bigger cast than the first and a lot more ground to cover for the writers in ten episodes. Highlight for me, episode nine called Blackwater written by Martin himself.

Downton Abbey S3 – Yes you’re reading that right, the third season of this brilliant period drama is scheduled for the autumn. Said to be set in the early 1920s – and said to be the last series as writer Julian Fellows only ever envisaged three – it will probably cover the slow demise of the aristocracy in England, and hopefully tie up what happens to Bates.

 

Films

John Carter – Pixar releases its first live action film. This is a lavish film version of Tarzan creators Edgar Rich Burroughs Barsoom books. The trailer looks great, with plenty of action and a heroic looking hero, stars Taylor Kitsch as John Carter. Due out in March.

Wrath Of The Titans – This sequel to Clash Of The Titans sees the hero Perseus embark on a quest to the underworld to rescue Zeus from his brother Hades. Sam Wothington stars as Perseus. Due out in March.

The Avengers – Joss Weadon writes and directs what must be the most ambitious project of the year. Bringing together the superhero team of Captain America, Thor, Iron Man, Hawkeye, Black Widow and the Hulk to do battle against Loki and an as yet un-known threat to Earth (though most people think it’s the Skrulls). Due out in May.

Snow White And The Huntsman – Based only on the trailer I’m giving this a go. It looks dark and moody, and has no singing animals. Due out in June.

Prometheus – Ridley Scott returns to the genre he defined with his Alien/not-Alien prequel. Due out in June.

The Dark Knight Rises – The third, and last, in Christopher Nolan’s re-booting of the Batman legend. Going on the trailer and teaser poster I’m hedging my bets that this will end with Bruce Wayne/Batman broken and in traction. Due out in July.

Expendables 2 – Stallone, Swarzenegger & Willis on screen together. What else does any red blooded man want? Due out in August.

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey – This needs no introduction, Peter Jackson back where he belongs in Middle Earth. Gandalf, Elrond and Golem return for this tale of lost treasure, a dragon, a battle between five armies, Oh… and a ring. Due out in December.

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