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Listen to an Exclusive Audio Excerpt From Ellen Kushner’s Upcoming Serial Drama Tremontaine

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Ellen Kushner, author of the cult fantasy novel Swordspoint, returns us to the city of Riverside with Tremontaine—a serialized prequel of sex, scandal, and swordplay.

Tremontaine is set to be released on October 28th via Serial Box, an innovative publishing platform that is like the lovechild of a television series and a novel. Each week, a new episode of the Tremontaine saga will emerge in both audio and ebook format. Serials run for “seasons” of 10-16 weeks, meaning that when you subscribe, you’ll be signing up for months of literary adventure. And we’ve got the first audio excerpt.


Here’s what we know about Tremontaine, set in the world of Ellen Kushner’s Swordspoint:

A Duchess whose beauty is matched only by her cunning; her husband’s dangerous affair with a handsome scholar; a Foreigner in a playground of swordplay and secrets; and a mathematical genius on the brink of revolution—when long-buried lies threaten to come to light, betrayal and treachery know no bounds with stakes this high.


Tremontaine’s episodes ares written by Ellen Kushner, Alaya Dawn Johnson, Malinda Lo, Joel Derfner, Racheline Maltese, and Patty Bryant.

In this audio sneak peek of the premiere episode, written by Kushner and narrated by Sarah Mollo-Christensen, we meet Ixkaab Balam, “first daughter of a first daughter of the House of Balam of the Traders of Kinwiinik. You can call her Kaab.”

This is a chance to revisit Riverside, the city of intrigue from Kushner’s fantastical Swordspoint, The Privilege of the Sword and The Fall of Kings. First published in 1987, Swordspoint is now considered a “mannerpunk” classic, known for its rapier-sharp wit, queer-friendly themes and memorable cast of characters.


With Tremontaine, we return to Riverside with characters old and new, and a team of writers led by Kushner. Since the serial is a prequel to the books, you won’t need to have read them to get started, but we hear there are tasty easter eggs for those who are already fans.


You can also check out the Serial Box trailer for Tremontaine:

[Tremontaine via Serial Box]