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Typo Hunt: The Trade of Queens

It's that time of year again, and Tor are getting ready to re-typeset "The Trade of Queens" for paperback release next March.

If you own the hardcover (Kindle edition doesn't count) and have spotted some typos, this is the thread for posting them on! It'd help if you can quote four or five words of verbatim text around the blooper, and a page number in the hardback. As Linus Torvalds observed, with enough eyeballs all bugs are easily spotted: so if any of you eagle-eyes spotted anything, now is the time to gloat in public about it!



I'm curious why electronic versions of the book wouldn't count. Are the two versions not generated from the same source? I know the page numbers won't match, but with enough context around the error it shouldn't be hard to find.


I'm curious why electronic versions of the book wouldn't count. Are the two versions not generated from the same source?

Not in all cases, no. In particular, Amazon have a bad habit of hand-rolling their own (or taking etext supplied by the publisher and re-typesetting it).


One thing Amazon appear to have got right is letting people know when an updated version is available.

I'm fairly sure that if I noticed any typos when I was reading ToQ I would have noted them down, the experience of reading a freshly-out HC being so unusual for me!


Surprised at you Charlie as a former Computer Shopper linux journalist misattributing your quote.

Linus' Law is named after Linus Torvalds but was actually written by Eric S Raymond and named after Linux in his honour. Pretty sure the first place it appeared was in "The Cathedral and the Bazaar"


Bite me.

(Just driven 300 miles over two days, including freezing fog and fatal accidents closing the A1. Not in the mood.)


"Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow", The Cathedral and the Bazaar, chap. 4 ("Release Early, Release Often"),

Guess I'll reread it while I'm at it.

Oh, and feel free to delete this comment once/if you fix the original post.


Wrong book. Haven't read ToQ yet--waiting for the paperback. I'll be sure to read "The Revolution Business" before March, to be ready.

I have a short list of items found in "The Fuller Memorandum", when will that typo hunt begin?


What's the deadline for this? I only ask because I'm still on volume 2, having started vol 1 over the weekend.


Not sure how tasty you would be ;)


Deadline is this Monday the 22nd -- UK time, not US time. After that, it's going to Production.


Ah, OK. I'm unlikely to be that far through the series by then.


p. 86: "the paperwork for the hire car in the parking lot, hired under a false name"

p. 87: "ending up in a motel in Providence with a newly hired car"

In American usage, only employees can be hired -- cars are rented. (As a noun, "rental car.")


P143, line 11:

' "Is it that bad?" She asked brightly...'

Should be 'she asked...'


That seems like a bit of a quibble. In the first few books there are similar things, like calling a cell phone a mobile, or saying someone is "in care" rather than "in foster care". I commented on them before, then I realized that Miriam's world isn't quite ours, so I'm not sure that sort of thing should count.


Agreed. This sort of thing are differences in use of language , not typos. Although its interesting how different the use is between the US and the UK - Cell v Mobile & Rented v Hired. Can't say I would have noticed the last one though, being a right pondian.


The last one is along the lines of "I was in Hospital." in the states we'd have 'the' in there.

Anyhow, thinking about the earlier comment, over here (at least in New York last time I was there) a hired car wouldn't refer to a rental, but to one called to take you somewhere, better than a taxi, not necessarily a limo.


Not a typo, but a mistake. In the third paragraph of p110 Hildegarde says "Helge and Creon are first cousins once removed", but in the last paragraph the relationship between Hildegarde and Creon is 'your sister's grandson' making Helge and Creon second cousins.

If a cousin is the same generation, there is no 'remove'(in this case, both are grandchildren of siblings), the remove, in this case Patricia is Creon's first cousin once removed Wikipedia has a handy chart.

Sorry if that wasn't the level of pedantry you were looking for.


"We were in [a] hospital."

FWIW in Australia we wouldn't say the "a". It's the same as "We were in bed." (I never know where the . goes after a sentence ends in a quote, before or after the closing double quote?).


I noticed the many British usages by Americans native to a U.S. not all that different from ours at the time (e.g., Boston, Cambridge, and New York City exist, many drugs illegal, nukes work, V.P. a soulless criminal with a bad heart), and just said to myself:

"It's Karma operating on a long history of the future where everyone was an American, Americans getting British usage wrong, and Dick van Dyke's cock's-egg of a Cockney accent."


Alternatively, an American copy-editor who is supposed to spot that stuff was not doing what they'd been specifically asked to do ...


This ought to be my last comment on this subject, since I'm useless for the topic at hand.

I think you once said that the US edition of "Halting State" was toned down for American readers. If so that's a shame, but I don't recall noticing it, which I guess means the editor did a decent job on it.


It was the Scottishisms. My agent and editor had a hard time with them, so they assumed the US readers would similarly find them hard. (Wimps!)As one of the jobs of the reader of a work of SF is to figure out how the world is put together, they ought to be able to work out the meaning of strange terms as long as they're used consistently -- whether the words are abstracted from another culture, or made up on the spot (shite or smeerp, in other words).


Hmm. This reminds me of my sophomore year feud with my English teacher. It started when she marked every incidence of "grey" in one of my papers as a mis-spelling. I had dictionaries, authorities and the word "greyhound" in my favor; she had the opinion that it was her class and she could run it any way she damned well pleased. I was monumentally unimpressed with authority, she was the legendary rock which would not move. The debate was not resolved by the time I graduated, mostly because I was enjoying it too much.

I say, leave the Britishisms (and/or Scottishisms) alone. Folks in the USA need more exposure to alternatives to our culture: we're parochial enough already!



English usage has "in hospital" as being a patient in one as opposed to "in a hospital" being simply temorarily located in one. Another place where context is everything. Unfortunately my copy of Trade of Queens is not at hand right now as my son is reading it so I'll have to miss out on the hunt the typo game.


Kindle edition? (This title is not available for customers from your location in: Europe.) Ha bloody ha. It's like youtube for people that can read. Please complain bitterly to your publishers on my behalf.


There was inconsistent usage of capitalization of honorifics (Lady vs lady) and inconsistent usage of capitalization after colons. I gave up after a while; it likely only bothers the small minority of readers who are typographically sensitive.

The bigger inconsistency, Dr. ven Hjalmar's first name is not so easily fixed*. He was introduced in the series as Dr. Robard ven Hjalmar but subsequently (in previous, already published books in the series, and especially in pivotal scenes) called Dr. Griben ven Hjalmar. In this book, both names are used & I have indicated in my list the instances. There is also another character similarly named, a Baron Griben ven Hjalmar. I don't have a solution: the arrow of typo-fixing flies in one direction, especially in a multi-volume story published over several years.

The other naming convention that wasn't consistently followed is the ven/voh, male/female one. I have also indicated where I found these.

:The task of maintaining internal consistency over a multi-volume story is *hard.

List follows:

Pg 20 para 5 line 1: For Dr. Robard ven Hjalmar Pg 20 para 5 line 5: Robard had been quick-witted Pg 20 para 6 line15: Robard aimed higher, choosing medicine Pg 21 para 2 line 8: One day, Robard reasoned, it was likely Pg 43 para 1 line 9: pinned down by theodolites born -> borne Pg 43 para 5 line 1: “At T minus eight minutes, Erik -> Kurt (it’s Kurt & Jurgen who deliver the bomb to the Pentagon in following pages) Pg 59 para 2 line 2: Or, or Dr. Griben ven Hjalmar Pg 67 para 1 line 1: On the ninth floor of a department store ->eighth floor (It’s an eight floor building as stated in “The Revolution Business” and at the start of this book, pg 11 line 2: In a locked store room on the eighth – top –floor of a department store…) Pg 69 3rd last line: eleven-sixteen, on the ninth floor of a steel-framed concrete department store-> eighth floor Pg 140 para 1 line 4: in the words of my predecessor, Harry S Truman -> Harry S. Truman Pg 150 para 7 line 1: It wasn’t as if she’d wanted to have a baby: Griben ven Hjalmar Pg 166 para 4 line 2: Lady ven Thorold,” he started -> Lady voh Thorold Pg 169 2nd last line: “But is there a better alternative. My lady ven Thorold?” -> Lady voh Thorold Pg 180 para 2 line 4: first time in a week there’d been a new manilla envelope -> manila envelope Pg 230 11 lines from bottom: only where they’re going to surface. Griben ven Hjalmar Pg 245 para 5 line 1: Helena ven Wu -> Helena voh Wu Pg 261 para 5 line 7: “Tell me, Andrew.” He skewed Dr. James -> skewered Pg 272 last line: Robard ven Hjalmar Pg 273 line 2: over half a century of internicine -> internecine Pg 276 para 3 line 1:”But I-“ Helena ven Wu -> voh Wu Pg 287 last para line 4: …most part already left. Helena ven Wu -> voh Wu


para 1 line 4: in the words of my predecessor, Harry S Truman -> S. Truman

Absolutely incorrect, as Truman had no middle name to abbreviate. Both his grandfathers were alive when he was born and to avoid hard feelings his parents just used the S with no period. (It's 3:37 a.m. here--random phone calls are just lovely things to get this time of day--so I hope you'll excuse my not going downstairs into the library and seeing if "Truman" byMcCullough reproduces the birth certificate.)

29: 23 - Do you absolutely promise that no future work of yours will ever have a glossary containing entries like:-

Cartie (aka piler) - An unpowered single-seat 4-wheeled conveyance, normally made from a stout plank, a fruit crate, and the wheels from an old pram.

Please, pretty please, pretty please with a Flake, raspberry sauce, hundreds and thousands, and a cherry on top?


I suppose somebody has already done an SF story which is mostly glossary. Or hypertext links. Bit of a gimmick, really, and it would be a PITA to write.

(there's something I'm writing now that involves a very young Stephen Tennant, and I'm sure people are going to think of David Tennant.)

At least I don't have that trouble with Lady Helen.


There is, as it happens, a glossary in the Laundry books -- mostly because of the acronym soup of secret agencies that get mentioned. But no, I'm not gallus enow to put a gloss on Scots!


I wasn't that serious to start with, I'd forgotten the Laundry, but a glossary explaining alphabet soup is a different thing from using dialect (or made up) words that are adequately clear in context, and then explaining them.


That prompted some googling where I learned something new (thanks). Despite "S" being his whole middle name, including the period is the generally accepted version. One expects that the Truman Library is the authority on such matters.


In western central Scotland that "cartie" would be a "geggy". Just saying.


I'm just finishing my third reading of The Moon is a Harsh Mistress because it's our book for bookgroup tomorrow. The inside cover says "natural-seeming future dialect" but there's only some mathmatical/scientific terms (I thought I might have to define DIDO but then I remembered that another member just retired from the Navy Yards) and the protagonist who came from a Russian family and speaks English without the pronouns and so forth. I don't know who wrote that cover (from Tor), but they're sure wrong.


Page 270, third paragraph:

"The doctor, placidly munching on a desert platter..." should presumably be dessert.

(sorry, that's as far as I got so far)


Contributions checked against the paperback proofs, bundled up, and thrown back at an editor. Thanks, guys! (And I owe you a round of beers, Soon!)



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This page contains a single entry by Charlie Stross published on November 16, 2010 8:59 PM.

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