John Scalzi’s new novel set in the Old Man’s War universe is going to be serialized starting in January 2013. Called The Human Division, the book will be weekly between January 15 and April 9. The 13 part series will be available electronically through Amazon.com, Apple, and Barnes & Noble. It looks like each story will cost $.99, which means the whole thing will run you about $13. That’s a little pricy for an ebook — most of the ones I buy go for $9.99 — but it’s not unreasonable.
Those who’d rather get the whole book at once can wait for the print edition, which is being published in Spring or Summer 2013.
I enjoyed the first two books this series (Old Man’s War, The Ghost Brigades), but the third book (The Last Colony) felt half-baked. I don’t know if it’s because he spun off some material for his young adult novel Zoe’s Tale, but it felt like there were gaping holes in the storyline, and the end fit together a little too nicely. That said, I enjoy Scalzi’s writing, and I’m willing to give the new book a chance.
There have been a number of attempts at serialized short fiction over the years; I remember Stephen King first giving it a go with “The Plant” back in 2000. That project failed, but we’ve come along way since then. I always liked the idea of serialized fiction, particularly science fiction, and it’s been a while since I’ve seen anything that really piqued my interest (for the curious, that would be J.C. Hutchin’s Seventh Son trilogy.