MonkeyBrain Books

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MonkeyBrain Books
GenreScience fiction/fantasy
FounderChris Roberson
Allison Baker
WebsiteOfficial website

MonkeyBrain Books (MonkeyBrain, Inc.) is an independent American publishing house based in Austin, Texas, specialising in books comprising both new content and reprinting online, international, or out-of-print content, which show "an academic interest," but which "reach a popular audience as well."[1]


Founded by science-fiction author Chris Roberson with his business partner and spouse Allison Baker, MonkeyBrain Books specializes in "genre fiction and nonfiction genre studies" after two years focusing solely on non-fiction.[2]

After dabbling in self-publication and Print On Demand, Roberson said he wanted to ensure that his books were distributed widely.[3]

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen[edit]

The first project MonkeyBrain Books published was a collection of companion notes to Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill's 1999 comic book series The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume I compiled by Texas-native Jess Nevins.[4] Heroes & Monsters: The Unofficial Companion to the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen sold well[citation needed], and continues to be one of MonkeyBrains best-selling titles several years after its first publication.[citation needed] It was nominated for an International Horror Guild Award and favorably reviewed in both Locus and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, among other publications.[5] The companion to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Volume II followed in 2004, and in 2006, Titan Books published the UK versions of both titles. In 2008, the guide to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Black Dossier was released.

Other titles[edit]

Continuing its self-imposed remit to publish works of non-fiction genre studies, MonkeyBrain's debut titles (in December, 2003) also included a collection of short essays by Matthew Rossi, comprising a wide-ranging guide to numerous weird, odd, imaginary, and mythical places and things: Things That Never Were: Fantasies, Lunacies & Entertaining Lies, and a collection of articles/essays by Rick Klaw (many of which had appeared on his "Geeks with Books" column at SF Site) ruminating on everything from book-selling & signings, comics & science fiction and censorship: Geek Confidential: Echoes from the 21st Century. In 2004, MonkeyBrain's output included a substantially updated (around 25% new material[1]) printing of Michael Moorcock's guide to Epic Fantasy, and The Discontinuity Guide, author and writer Paul Cornell (with Martin Day & Keith Topping)'s attempt to form a coherent narrative from decades of Doctor Who continuity. In 2005, alongside Philip Jose Farmer commentator Win Scott Eckert's guide to the Wold Newton Universe, the Locus award-nominated Myths for the Modern Age (whose contributors include Philip Jose Farmer and Jess Nevins, among others), Chris Roberson edited the first volume in a projected annual series of Adventure anthologies, comprising "original fiction in the spirit of early twentieth-century pulp fiction magazines" across the genres, featuring contributions from (among others) Lou Anders, Paul Di Filippo, Mark Finn, Michael Moorcock and Kim Newman.

In 2005 MonkeyBrain also published Jess Nevins' World Fantasy Award-nominated Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana, the first comprehensive reference encyclopedia to the fantastic literature of the nineteenth century, while 2006 debuted MonkeyBrain's first art book, covering the work of John Picacio, MonkeyBrain's primary cover artist. Cementing MonkeyBrain's leap from non-fiction and reference genre works to include fiction, 2006 also saw publication of a collection of science fiction author Kim Newman's Richard Jeperson stories (a distillation of British spy-fi television) in The Man from the Diogenes Club, with a follow-up published the following year alongside Paul Cornell's imaginative science fiction novel British Summertime.

Robert E. Howard scholar Mark Finn's 2006 biography, Blood & Thunder: The Life & Art of Robert E. Howard, met with considerable critical praise, and not only won the 2007 Cimmerian Award, The Atlantean, but was also nominated for Locus and World Fantasy Awards.[6][7][8]

Published works[edit]

  • Things That Never Were: Fantasies, Lunacies & Entertaining Lies by Matthew Rossi (introduction by Paul Di Filippo) (Dec 25, 2003)
  • Heroes & Monsters: The Unofficial Companion to the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Jess Nevins (Introduction by Alan Moore) (Dec 25, 2003)
  • Geek Confidential: Echoes from the 21st Century by Rick Klaw (introduction by Michael Moorcock) (Dec 25, 2003)
  • Wizardry and Wild Romance: A Study of Epic Fantasy by Michael Moorcock (Introduction by China Miéville; Afterword by Jeff VanderMeer) (Oct 25, 2004)
  • Why Should I Cut Your Throat? by Jeff VanderMeer (Oct 25, 2004)
  • The DisContinuity Guide: The Unofficial Doctor Who Companion by Paul Cornell, Martin Day & Keith Topping (Foreword by Terrance Dicks) (Oct 25, 2004)
  • A Blazing World: The Unofficial Companion to the Second League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Jess Nevins (Introduction by Alan Moore) (Oct 25, 2004)
  • Projections: Science Fiction in Literature and Film by Lou Anders (Dec 25, 2004)
  • Myths for the Modern Age: Philip Jose Farmer's Wold Newton Universe by Win Scott Eckert (Nov 25, 2005)
  • Adventure by Chris Roberson (ed.) (Nov 25, 2005)
  • The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana by Jess Nevins (Introduction by Michael Moorcock) (Dec 25, 2005) - MonkeyBrain's first hardback
  • Cross Plains Universe - Texans Celebrate Robert E. Howard by Scott A. Cupp & Joe R. Lansdale (ed.s) (2006)
  • Cover Story: The Art of John Picacio by John Picacio (Introduction by Michael Moorcock) (May 25, 2006)
  • The Man from the Diogenes Club by Kim Newman (Jun 25, 2006)
  • Superhero: The Secret Origin of a Genre by Peter Coogan (Introduction by Denny O'Neil) (Jul 25, 2006)
  • The Hollow Earth by Rudy Rucker (Dec 25, 2006)
  • The Secret Files of the Diogenes Club by Kim Newman (Nov 25, 2007)
  • Blood & Thunder: The Life & Art of Robert E. Howard by Mark Finn (Introduction by Joe R. Lansdale) (Dec 25, 2006)
  • British Summertime by Paul Cornell (Paperback - Jul 25, 2007) - UK Hardback published by Gollancz, 2002
  • Cenotaxis by Sean Williams (Dec 25, 2007)
  • Impossible Territories: An Unofficial Companion to The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen by Jess Nevins
  • Escape From Hell! by Hal Duncan (Nov 2008)
  • Two Hawks from Earth by Philip José Farmer (May 2009)
  • Death of a Starship by Jay Lake (Dec 2009)
  • Mysteries of the Diogenes Club by Kim Newman (2010)


  1. ^ a b Chris Roberson, interviewed at Emerald City. Accessed on the 21st January, 2008
  2. ^ Chris Roberson's homepage. Accessed 21st January, 2008
  3. ^ MonkeyBrain Distribution Information. Accessed 21st January, 2008
  4. ^ Michael Colbert interviews Chris Roberson for Infinity Plus. Accessed 21st January, 2008
  5. ^ Jess Nevins' Annotations homepage. Accessed on the 21st January, 2008
  6. ^ The Robert E. Howard United Press Association. Accessed 21st January, 2008
  7. ^ 2007 Locus Award listings Archived 2012-07-02 at WebCite. Accessed 30 October 2014
  8. ^ World Fantasy Convention Award Winners & Nominees Archived 2012-08-29 at WebCite. Accessed 30 October 2014

External links[edit]