Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Eye on New Releases for September 20, 2016


 (Book three of the Three-Body Trilogy)

Synopsis:
"Now this epic trilogy concludes with Death's End. Half a century after the Doomsday Battle, the uneasy balance of Dark Forest Deterrence keeps the Trisolaran invaders at bay. Earth enjoys unprecedented prosperity due to the infusion of Trisolaran knowledge. With human science advancing daily and the Trisolarans adopting Earth culture, it seems that the two civilizations will soon be able to co-exist peacefully as equals without the terrible threat of mutually assured annihilation. But the peace has also made humanity complacent.

Cheng Xin, an aerospace engineer from the early 21st century, awakens from hibernation in this new age. She brings with her knowledge of a long-forgotten program dating from the beginning of the Trisolar Crisis, and her very presence may upset the delicate balance between two worlds. Will humanity reach for the stars or die in its cradle?"


Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Eye on New Releases for September 13, 2016

 (B&N, Amazon)

Synopsis:
"It was a typically unpleasant Puget Sound winter before the arrival of Lioness Lazos. An enigmatic young waitress with strange abilities, when the lovely Lioness comes to Gardner Island even the weather takes notice.

As an impossibly beautiful spring leads into a perfect summer, Lioness is drawn to a complicated family. She is taken in by two disenchanted lovers—dynamic Joanna Delvecchio and scholarly Abe Aronson — visited by Joanna’s previously unlucky-in-love daughter, Lily. With Lioness in their lives, they are suddenly compelled to explore their deepest dreams and desires.

Lioness grows more captivating as the days grow longer. Her new family thrives, even as they may be growing apart. But lingering in Lioness’s past is a dark secret — and even summer days must pass."


 (Tor.com novella)

Synopsis:
"At the beginning—no—at the end—she appears, full of fury and bound by chains of prophecy.
Setting off on an unexplained quest from which she is compelled to complete, and facing unnatural challenges in a land that doesn’t seem to exist, she will discover the secrets of herself, or die trying. But along the way, the obstacles will grow to a seemingly insurmountable point, and the final choice will be the biggest sacrifice yet.

This is the story of a woman’s struggle against her very existence, an epic tale of the adventure and emotional upheaval on the way to face an ancient enigmatic foe. This could only spun from the imagination of Marie Brennan, award-winning author and beloved fantasist, beginning a new series about the consequences of war—and of fate."



Synopsis:
"Ten years in the making, comes a literary work Like no other, from the legendary author of Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and From Hell.

In the half a square mile of decay and demolition that was England’s Saxon capital, eternity is loitering between the firetrap housing projects. Embedded in the grubby amber of the district’s narrative among its saints, kings, prostitutes, and derelicts a different kind of human time is happening, a soiled simultaneity that does not differentiate between the petrolcolored puddles and the fractured dreams of those who navigate them. Fiends last mentioned in the second-century Book of Tobit wait in urine-scented stairwells, the delinquent specters of unlucky children undermine a century with tunnels, and in upstairs parlors laborers with golden blood reduce fate to a snooker tournament.

An opulent mythology for those without a pot to piss in, through the labyrinthine streets and pages of Jerusalem tread ghosts that sing of wealth and poverty; of Africa, and hymns, and our threadbare millennium. They discuss English as a visionary language from John Bunyan to James Joyce, hold forth on the illusion of mortality post-Einstein, and insist upon the meanest slum as Blake’s eternal holy city."

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Eye on New Releases for September 6, 2016


(Companion novel)

Synopsis:
"Çeda is the youngest pit fighter in the history of Sharakhai. She’s made her name in the arena as the fearsome White Wolf. None but her closest friends and allies know her true identity. But this all changes when she crosses the path of Rümayesh, an ehrekh, a sadistic creature forged aeons ago by the god of chaos.

The ehrekh are desert dwellers, but for centuries Rümayesh has lurked in the dark corners of Sharakhai, combing the populace for human “jewels” that might interest her. Some she chooses to stand by her side, until she tires of them and discards them. Others she abducts to examine more closely, leaving them ruined, worn-out husks.

Çeda flees the ehrekh’s attentions, but that only makes Rümayesh covet her more. Rümayesh grows violent, threatening to unmask Çeda as the White Wolf—but the danger grows infinitely worse when she turns her attention to Çeda’s friends.

As Çeda fights to protect the people dearest to her, Rümayesh comes closer to attaining her prize, and the struggle becomes a battle for Çeda’s very soul."


(Companion novel)

Synopsis:
"The fugitive slave Ghu has ended the assassin Ahjvar's century-long possession by a murderous and hungry ghost, but at great cost. Heir of the dying gods of Nabban, he is drawn back to the empire he fled as a boy, journeying east on the caravan road with Ahjvar at his side.

Haunted by memory of those he has slain, Ahjvar is ill in mind and body, a danger to those about him and to the man who loves him most of all. Tortured by violent nightmares, he believes himself mad. Only his determination not to leave Ghu to face his fate alone keeps Ahjvar from asking to be freed at last from his unnatural life.

Innocent and madman, god and assassin--two men to seize an empire from the tyrannical descendants of the devil Yeh-Lin. But in war-torn Nabban, enemies of gods and humans stir in the shadows. Yeh-Lin herself meddles with the heir of her enemies and his soul-shattered companion, as the fate of the empire rests on their shoulders."


 (Collection)

Synopsis:
"The inaugural volume of Library of America’s Ursula K. Le Guin edition gathers her complete Orsinian writings, enchanting, richly imagined historical fiction collected here for the first time. Written before Le Guin turned to science fiction, the novel Malafrena is a tale of love and duty set in the central european country of Orsinia in the early nineteenth century, when it is ruled by the Austrian empire. The stories originally published in Orsinian Tales (1976) offer brilliantly rendered episodes of personal drama set against a history that spans Orsinia’s emergence as an independent kingdom in the twelfth century to its absorption by the eastern Bloc after World War II. The volume is rounded out by two additional stories that bring the history of Orsinia up to 1989, the poem “Folksong from the Montayna Province,” Le Guin’s first published work, and two never before published songs in the Orisinian language."


 (Reprint Anthology)

Synopsis:
"ANTHOLOGY OF GREAT SF STORIES BY RENOWNED WOMEN SF AUTHORS! A collection of wonderful SF carefully selected by ground-breaking editor and author, Kristine Kathryn Rusch. Stories by Andre Norton, Anne McCaffrey, Lois McMaster Bujold, CJ Cherryh and more.

Meet the Women of Futures Past: from Grand Master Andre Norton and the beloved Anne McCaffrey to some of the most popular SF writers today, such as Lois McMaster Bujold and CJ Cherryh. The most influential writers of multiple generations are found in these pages, delivering lost classics and foundational touchstones that shaped the field.

You'll find Northwest Smith, C.L. Moore’s famous smuggler who predates (and maybe inspired) Han Solo by four decades. Read Leigh Brackett’s fiction and see why George Lucas chose her to write The Empire Strikes Back. Adventure tales, post-apocalyptic visions, space opera, aliens-among-us, time travel—these women have delivered all this and more, some of the best science fiction ever written!

Includes stories by Leigh Brackett, Lois McMaster Bujold, Pat Cadigan, CJ Cherryh, Zenna Henderson, Nancy Kress, Ursula K. Le Guin, Anne McCaffrey, C.L. Moore, Andre Norton, James Tiptree, Jr., and Connie Willis."


(Debut novel)

Synopsis:
"Everfair is a wonderful Neo-Victorian alternate history novel that explores the question of what might have come of Belgium's disastrous colonization of the Congo if the native populations had learned about steam technology a bit earlier. Fabian Socialists from Great Britian join forces with African-American missionaries to purchase land from the Belgian Congo's "owner," King Leopold II. This land, named Everfair, is set aside as a safe haven, an imaginary Utopia for native populations of the Congo as well as escaped slaves returning from America and other places where African natives were being mistreated.

Nisi Shawl's speculative masterpiece manages to turn one of the worst human rights disasters on record into a marvelous and exciting exploration of the possibilities inherent in a turn of history. Everfair is told from a multiplicity of voices: Africans, Europeans, East Asians, and African Americans in complex relationships with one another, in a compelling range of voices that have historically been silenced. Everfair is not only a beautiful book but an educational and inspiring one that will give the reader new insight into an often ignored period of history."

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Eye on New Releases for August 30, 2016



Synopsis:
"You have three minutes to save your life . . . THREE MINUTES You wake up alone in a horrible land. A horn sounds. The Call has begun. TWO MINUTES The Sidhe are close. They're the most beautiful and terrible people you've ever seen. And they've seen you. ONE MINUTE Nessa will be Called soon. No one thinks she has any chance to survive. But she's determined to prove them wrong. TIME'S UP Could you survive the Call?"



Synopsis:
"After a series of missions—some successful, others less so, and most nearly getting everyone killed—the Guardians of the Galaxy are at a breaking point when they crash-land on a strange planet. With no way to repair their ship, the frustrated Guardians go their separate ways, quickly discovering that the planet's inhabitants have never progressed past a medieval stage of development. Quill finds himself a favored member of a powerful duke's court (as well as a favorite of the duke's daughter), and life seems just fine under the circumstances . . . until the duchy comes under attack. When Quill reckons that their foe may be what's keeping the planet's civilization from advancing, he realizes that defeating it—with the Guardians' help—may be their only hope for getting off of that world. . . If he can find his friends in time."


 (Debut novel)

Synopsis:
"Welcome to the Five Isles, where war has come in the name of the invading army of Sør Sevier, a merciless host driven by the prophetic fervor of the Angel Prince, Aeros, toward the last unconquered kingdom of Gul Kana. Yet Gault, one of the elite Knights Archaic of Sør Sevier, is growing disillusioned by the crusade he is at the vanguard of just as it embarks on his Lord Aeros’ greatest triumph.

While the eldest son of the fallen king of Gul Kana now reigns in ever increasing paranoid isolationism, his two sisters seek their own paths. Jondralyn, the older sister, renowned for her beauty, only desires to prove her worth as a warrior, while Tala, the younger sister, has uncovered a secret that may not only destroy her family but the entire kingdom. Then there's Hawkwood, the assassin sent to kill Jondralyn who has instead fallen in love with her and trains her in his deadly art. All are led further into dangerous conspiracies within the court.

And hidden at the edge of Gul Kana is Nail, the orphan taken by the enigmatic Shawcroft to the remote whaling village of Gallows Haven, a young man who may hold the link to the salvation of the entire Five Isles."




(Wild Cards anthology #23)

Synopsis:
"After the concluding events of Lowball, Officer Francis Black of Fort Freak, vigilante joker Marcus "The Infamous Black Tongue" Morgan, and ace thief Mollie "Tesseract" Steunenberg get stuck in Talas, Kazakhstan. There, the coldblooded Baba Yaga forces jokers into an illegal fighting ring, but her hidden agenda is much darker: her fighters' deaths serve to placate a vicious monster from another dimension. When the last line of defense against this world weakens, all hell breaks loose, literally....
The Committee in New York sends a team of aces to investigate. One by one, each falls victim to evil forces--including the dark impulses within themselves. Only the perseverance of the most unlikely of heroes has a chance of saving the world before utter chaos erupts on Earth."

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Eye on New Releases for August 23, 2016


(Third and final book of the Spellwright Trilogy)

Synopsis:
"Leandra Weal has a bad habit of getting herself in dangerous situations. 
 
While hunting neodemons in her role as Warden of Ixos, Leandra obtains a prophetic spell that provides a glimpse one day into her future. She discovers that she is doomed to murder someone she loves, soon, but not who. That’s a pretty big problem for a woman who has a shark god for a lover, a hostile empress for an aunt, a rogue misspelling wizard for a father, and a mother who--especially when arguing with her daughter--can be a real dragon.

Leandra’s quest to unravel the mystery of the murder-she-will-commit becomes more urgent when her chronic disease flares up and the Ixonian Archipelago is plagued by natural disasters, demon worshiping cults, and fierce political infighting. Everywhere she turns, Leandra finds herself amid intrigue and conflict. It seems her bad habit for getting into dangerous situations is turning into a full blown addiction.

As chaos spreads across Ixos, Leandra and her troubled family must race to uncover the shocking truth about a prophesied demonic invasion, human language, and their own identities--if they don't kill each other first."
 
 

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Eye on New Releases for August 16, 2016


 (Book two of The Broken Earth)

Synopsis:
"This is the way the world ends, for the last time. 

The season of endings grows darker, as civilization fades into the long cold night. 

Essun -- once Damaya, once Syenite, now avenger -- has found shelter, but not her daughter. Instead there is Alabaster Tenring, destroyer of the world, with a request. But if Essun does what he asks, it would seal the fate of the Stillness forever.

Far away, her daughter Nassun is growing in power - and her choices will break the world."


 (Tor.com novella)

Synopsis:
"Professor Vellitt Boe teaches at the prestigious Ulthar Women’s College. When one of her most gifted students elopes with a dreamer from the waking world, Vellitt must retrieve her.

'Kij Johnson's haunting novella The Dream-Quest of Vellitt Boe is both a commentary on a classic H.P. Lovecraft tale and a profound reflection on a woman's life. Vellitt's quest to find a former student who may be the only person who can save her community takes her through a world governed by a seemingly arbitrary dream logic in which she occasionally glimpses an underlying but mysterious order, a world ruled by capricious gods and populated by the creatures of dreams and nightmares. Those familiar with Lovecraft's work will travel through a fantasy landscape infused with Lovecraftian images viewed from another perspective, but even readers unfamiliar with his work will be enthralled by Vellitt's quest. A remarkable accomplishment that repays rereading.' —Pamela Sargent"



Synopsis:
"Ginger Stuyvesant, an American heiress living in London during World War I, is engaged to Captain Benjamin Hartshorne, an intelligence officer. Ginger is a medium for the Spirit Corps, a special Spiritualist force.

Each soldier heading for the front is conditioned to report to the mediums of the Spirit Corps when they die so the Corps can pass instant information about troop movements to military intelligence.

Ginger and her fellow mediums contribute a great deal to the war efforts, so long as they pass the information through appropriate channels. While Ben is away at the front, Ginger discovers the presence of a traitor. Without the presence of her fiance to validate her findings, the top brass thinks she's just imagining things. Even worse, it is clear that the Spirit Corps is now being directly targeted by the German war effort. Left to her own devices, Ginger has to find out how the Germans are targeting the Spirit Corps and stop them. This is a difficult and dangerous task for a woman of that era, but this time both the spirit and the flesh are willing…"

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Eye on New Releases for August 9, 2016


 (Anthology)

Table of Contents:
  • “The Citadel of Weeping Pearls” by Aliette de Bodard (Asimov’s Oct/Nov 2015)
  • “The Bone Swans of Amandale” by C.S.E. Cooney (Bone Swans, Mythic Delirium Books)
  • "Binti" by Nnedi Okorafor (Binti, Tor.com)
  • “The Last Witness” by K. J. Parker (The Last Witness, Tor.com)
  • “Johnny Rev” by Rachel Pollack (F&SF Jul/Aug 2015)
  • “Inhuman Garbage,” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch (Asimov’s March 2015)
  • “Gypsy,” by Carter Scholz (F&SF Nov/Dec 2015)
  • “The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn,” by Usman Malik (The Pauper Prince and the Eucalyptus Jinn, Tor.com)
  • “What Has Passed Shall in Kinder Light Appear” by Bao Shu, translated by Ken Liu (F&SF Mar/Apr 2015)


 (Book three of The Tale of Shikanoko)

Synopsis:
"Shikanoko, at what should be a warrior’s hour of greatest triumph, turns his back on those around him, in mourning for a secret love . . .

The Spider Tribe, spurned by their guardian, explore the extent of their powers and ruthless ambitions. . .

Hina, who alone knows the whereabouts of the true emperor, has to forge a new identity of her own. No one must ever know that she is Kiyoyori’s daughter . . .

As the traditional powers navigate weakness and disarray, old spirits and new figures enter the epic battle for the Lotus Throne . . ."



Synopsis:
"For fans of legendary pulp author H. P. Lovecraft, there is nothing bigger than the annual Providence-based convention the Summer Tentacular. Horror writer Colleen Danzig doesn’t know what to expect when she arrives, but is unsettled to find that among the hobnobbing between scholars and literary critics are a group of real freaks: book collectors looking for volumes bound in human skin, and true believers claiming the power to summon the Elder God Cthulhu, one of their idol’s most horrific fictional creations, before the weekend is out.

Colleen’s trip spirals into a nightmare when her roommate for the weekend, an obnoxious novelist known as Panossian, turns up dead, his face neatly removed. What’s more unsettling is that, in the aftermath of the murder, there is little concern among the convention goers. The Summer Tentacular continues uninterrupted, except by a few bumbling police.

Everyone at the convention is a possible suspect, but only Colleen seems to show any interest in solving the murder. So she delves deep into the darkness, where occult truths have been lurking since the beginning of time. A darkness where Panossian is waiting, spending a lot of time thinking about Colleen, narrating a new Lovecraftian tale that could very well spell her doom."


 (Novella)

Synopsis:
"1941. In the chaos of wartime Marseille, American engineer—and occult disciple—Jack Parsons stumbles onto a clandestine anti-Nazi group, including Surrealist theorist André Breton. In the strange games of the dissident diplomats, exiled revolutionaries, and avant-garde artists, Parsons finds and channels hope. But what he unwittingly unleashes is the power of dreams and nightmares, changing the war and the world forever.

1950. A lone Surrealist fighter, Thibaut, walks a new, hallucinogenic Paris, where Nazis and the Resistance are trapped in unending conflict, and the streets are stalked by living images and texts—and by the forces of Hell. To escape the city, he must join forces with Sam, an American photographer intent on recording the ruins, and make common cause with a powerful, enigmatic figure of chance and rebellion: the exquisite corpse.

But Sam is being hunted. And new secrets will emerge that will test all their loyalties—to each other, to Paris old and new, and to reality itself."
 

(Collection)

Table of Contents:
"Steadfast Castle"
"The Man in Grey"
"The Dala Horse"
"The Woman Who Shook the World-Tree"
"Of Finest Scarlet Was Her Gown"
"3 A.M. in the Mesozoic Bar"
"Passage of Earth"
"From Babel’s Fall’n Glory We Fled . . ."
"For I Have Lain Me Down on the Stone of Loneliness and I’ll Not Be Back Again"
"Libertarian Russia"
"The Scarecrow’s Boy"
"The She-Wolf’s Hidden Grin"
"Goblin Lake"
"Pushkin the American"
"An Empty House with Many Doors"
"Tawny Petticoats"
"The House of Dreams"

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Eye on New Releases for August 2, 2016


(Novella)

Synopsis:
"In this emotionally gripping, genre-defying novella from Sarah Pinborough, a woman sits at her father's bedside, watching the clock tick away the last hours of his life. Her brothers and sisters--she is the middle child of five--have all turned up over the past week to pay their last respects. Each is traumatized in his or her own way, and the bonds that unite them to each other are fragile--as fragile perhaps as the old man's health.

With her siblings all gone, back to their self-obsessed lives, she is now alone with the faltering wreck of her father's cancer-ridden body. It is always at times like this when it--the dark and nameless, the impossible, presence that lingers along the fringes of the dark fields beyond the house--comes calling.

As the clock ticks away in the darkness, she can only wait for it to find her, a reunion she both dreads and aches for..."
 

(Tor.com novella)

Synopsis:
"The Church of Armes of the Light has battled the forces of Darkness for as long as anyone can remember. The great prophecy has foretold that a band of misfits, led by a high priestess will defeat the Dark Lord Darvezian, armed with their wits, the blessing of the Light and an artifact stolen from the merciless Spider Queen.

Their journey will be long, hard and fraught with danger. Allies will become enemies; enemies will become allies. And the Dark Lord will be waiting, always waiting…"

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Eye on New Releases for July 26, 2016


 (Book five of the Craft Sequence)

Synopsis:
"In Four Roads Cross, the great city of Alt Coulumb is in crisis. The moon goddess Seril, long thought dead, is back--and the people of Alt Coulumb aren't happy. Protests rock the city, and Kos Everburning's creditors attempt a hostile takeover of the fire god's church. Tara Abernathy, the god's in-house Craftswoman, must defend the church against the world's fiercest necromantic firm--and against her old classmate, a rising star in the Craftwork world.

As if that weren't enough, Cat and Raz, supporting characters from Three Parts Dead, are back too, fighting monster pirates; skeleton kings drink frozen cocktails, defying several principles of anatomy; jails, hospitals, and temples are broken into and out of; choirs of flame sing over Alt Coulumb; demons pose significant problems; a farmers' market proves more important to world affairs than seems likely; doctors of theology strike back; Monk-Technician Abelard performs several miracles; The Rats! play Walsh's Place; and dragons give almost-helpful counsel."


(Tor.com novella)

Synopsis:
"Alexander Drake, Investigator for Hire, doesn’t like working for the Nobility, and doesn’t prefer to take jobs from strange men who accost him in alleyways. A combination of hired muscle and ready silver have a way of changing a man’s mind.

A lord has been killed, his body found covered in bite marks. Even worse, the late lord’s will is missing, and not everyone wants Drake to find it. Solving the case might plunge Drake into deeper danger."

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Eye on New Releases for July 19, 2016


 (Debut novel)

Synopsis:
"A child is kidnapped with consequences that extend across worlds… A writer reaches into the past to discover the truth about a possible murder… Far away a young woman prepares for her mysterious future… 

In a future scarred by fracking and ecological collapse, Jenna Hoolman’s world is dominated by illegal smartdog racing: greyhounds genetically modified with human DNA. When her young niece goes missing that world implodes... Christy’s life is dominated by fear of her brother, a man she knows capable of monstrous acts and suspects of hiding even darker ones. Desperate to learn the truth she contacts Alex, who has his own demons to fight… And Maree, a young woman undertaking a journey that will change her world forever."


(Graphic novel)

Synopsis:
"Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900's Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection that will transform them both and make them the target of both human and otherworldly powers."