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PREMIUM

The Cruel Stars

Continual space battle action, despicable enemies, tight corners, and plucky heroines enliven the story, though one-dimensional characters, improbable last-minute saves, and familiar tropes weaken it. For larger collections; space opera lovers will enjoy a fast and reasonably exciting read.
PREMIUM

Darkdawn

Readers who enjoyed the first two books will not be disappointed by this dark, addictive story that contains coarse language and plenty of sexual content. [See Prepub Alert, 3/17/19.]
PREMIUM

The Dark Above

Fans of Justin Cronin’s The Passage, TV’s Stranger Things, and all versions of Stephen King’s IT will want to sit under summertime stars to binge this quick read. Any teen or adult fan of sf thrillers will enjoy this story, although they may want to read the first installment before jumping in.

Jade War

The follow-up to Lee’s Jade City delves further into her Asia-inspired world, embracing topics of family, relocation, and relations between rival factions. The setup for the final book will leave readers breathless with anticipation.
PREMIUM

Dark Nights 2: Resurrection

Fans of space operas or sf assessing technological benevolence with lots of detail and point-of-view characters will enjoy.
PREMIUM

Rotherweird

Some readers may find playwright Caldecott’s debut worth reading for originality and inventiveness, but others might find it difficult or baffling.

The Soul of Power

An excellent and exciting conclusion to an outstanding romantic fantasy trilogy. Sophy is as intriguing and complex a hero as Elanna and Jahan (The Memory of Fire), while the secondary characters remain just as well drawn. Highly recommended. [See Prepub Alert, 12/6/18.]
PREMIUM

The Sum of All Shadows

Van Lustbader (The Testament) concludes his “Testament” series with this fast-paced supernatural thriller that is equal parts Indiana Jones, Robert Langdon, and Old Testament. Recommended for fans of Dan Brown and Clive Cussler.
PREMIUM

Alphabet Squadron

Freed (Rogue One; Battlefront Twilight Company) offers a traditional “Star Wars” story told from the point of view of the five recruits and a couple of Imperial holdouts. Fans of the political intrigue, pitched space battles, and interpersonal humor of the original movie trilogy will rush to consume this first of a new trilogy.

"Alien" Read-Alikes | Sf/Fantasy, June 2019

PREMIUM

The Border Keeper

For fans of occult-tinged speculative fiction.
PREMIUM

The Best Science Fiction of the Year. Vol. 4

Scrutinizing politics and personal journeys, artificial intelligence and human emotion, this anthology will give new sf readers a breadth of material to ponder, while showing established fans new writers to follow. Recommended for all libraries.
PREMIUM

Null Set

Huang’s sophomore novel brings us the same tight action, compelling characters, and mathematics magic as Zero Sum Game. Fans of the TV series Jessica Jones will enjoy meeting Cas.
PREMIUM

Dahlia Black

The documentary approach causes some emotional distance, and the sheer amount of footnotes slows reader engagement, but there is plenty of narrative tension to keep the pages turning. Recommended for fans of Sylvain Neuvel’s Sleeping Giants or Max Brooks’s World War Z.
PREMIUM

Bursts of Fire

This exciting new series will have fantasy fans eagerly awaiting the next installment.
PREMIUM

Dragonslayer

An entertaining, but not particularly groundbreaking, fantasy. Recommended for fans of dragons and medieval settings.

Gods of Jade and Shadow

Purchase where Naomi Novik, Nnedi Okorafor, and N.K. Jemisin are popular. [See Prepub Alert, 2/18/19.]

Wanderers

A powerful story about humanity, technology, and the survival of the world. Comparisons to Stephen King’s The Stand are warranted, as Wendig (Zeroes) shatters the boundaries of speculative and literary fiction in a saga that will touch every reader. [See Prepub Alert, 1/23/19.]

This Is How You Lose the Time War

This stunning, semi-epistolary tale by coauthors El-Mohtar (The Honey Month) and Gladstone (“Craft Sequence” series) is a seamless story of time travel, sparring opponents, and the revelations of serving a cause. To unlock the complexities of language and plot here, readers will want to return to this book, with each read revealing a little more of its near-limitless substance.
PREMIUM

The Ables

Recommended for adult as well as YA sf collections and fans of Ransom Riggs’s Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.

Winter's Debut of the Month, El-Mohtar/Gladstone, Forest, Hall, Huang, Thompson, Wendig, & More | SF/Fantasy, June 2019

PREMIUM

Longer

Blumlein (All I Ever Dreamed) gives us Waiting for Godot, set in space, in succinct and intelligent storytelling.

Snakeskins

Major (You Don’t Belong Here; Blighters) takes a unique concept and creates a compelling plot with engaging, multidimensional characters. Recommended for sf readers and mystery lovers who are willing to expand their horizons.
PREMIUM

The Fire Opal Mechanism

This engaging stand-alone sequel to The Jewel and Her Lapidary highlights Wilde’s deft prose and fantastical imagination. Readers will enjoy the intersection of knowledge and freedom to learn twisted into something darker.
PREMIUM

Pass of Fire

Libraries that do not have the entire series will be at a disadvantage, and new readers will have some catching up to do, but military sf enthusiasts, particularly fans of author Harry Turtledove, will be enthralled.
PREMIUM

Green Valley

Readers will appreciate the questions raised, but this is not for the squeamish. Green Valley is not a pretty place.

The Lesson

A compelling read of an invasive occupation and emotional uprising, Turnbull's debut is a must for all libraries. The author, who crafts speculative stories featuring black characters on par with Octavia Butler, is definitely one to watch.

Fall; or, Dodge in Hell

This sprawling, genre-hopping novel will thrill Stephenson's fans and engross newcomers. Epic is an overused adjective, but it fits here. [See Prepub Alert, 12/3/18.]

Empire of Grass

The second installment in this series (after The Witchwood Crown) has everything fans expect from Williams: rich descriptions; high fantasy with twists and turns; and expertly drawn characters forced to fight for their kingdoms, unaware that the fate of the world lies in their hands. Highly recommended.

Recursion

This latest technological thriller from Crouch (Dark Matter) is completely engrossing and should have wide appeal. Highly recommended, especially for readers who enjoy suspenseful, fast-moving, well-crafted, science-based sf. [See Prepub Alert, 12/6/18.]

A Brightness Long Ago

Readers of Jacqueline Carey's "Kushiel" series or Joe Abercrombie's "Half a King" books should enjoy this dramatic and lush title for its almost, but not quite, historical backdrop. Also a good potential crossover for historical fiction fans since, as is usual for Kay, magic and the supernatural play only the tiniest role. [See Prepub Alert, 11/19/18.]

The Sol Majestic

With this intersection of sf and culinary narrative, Steinmetz (The Uploaded) serves up a charming coming-of-age tale with an appealing cast of unforgettable characters.

Magic for Liars

Gailey's debut is an energetic modern fantasy that plays rough with relationships and personal beliefs, from youth to adulthood. Ivy's emotional investigation will strike a chord in anyone who has ever felt like they don't belong. Highly recommended for all collections.

Empress of Forever

Gladstone's (Ruin of Angels) epic space opera and fast-paced adventure will thrill readers.

Fried's Debut of the Month, plus Banker, Basu, Bear, Harrison, McGuire, Mehrota, & Many More | SF/Fantasy, March 2019

The Lesson

A compelling tale of invasive occupation and emotional uprising, Turnbull’s debut is complex and enthralling. It’s a must for all libraries, and the writer, who crafts speculative stories with black characters on par with Octavia Butler, is definitely one to watch.

LJ Reviews the 2019 Hugo Nominees

Marlon James's Dark Star Rises

Martine's Debut of the Month, Binder, Chakraborty, Le Guin, McGuire, Tarkoff, Townsend, White | SF/Fantasy Reviews, Dec. 2018

The Ruin of Kings

This stunning debut takes epic fantasy to a high level, portraying a world filled with magic, demons, gods, and dragons, in which politics and power plays are the laws of the land.

Vigilance

In a world where mass shootings are already a near-daily occurrence, this slim novel might be too grim and genuine for some, but Jackson's fast-paced, blistering look at how a nation's seductive myths about itself can lead to its downfall is an absolute must-read. Perfect for fans of Lauren Beukes, Richard K. Morgan, or the Netflix series Black Mirror.

The Chaos Function

Skillingstead's (Harbinger) sf thriller revolves around chaos theory, the power of choice, and the price of love. Highly recommended for readers of dystopian stories, time-travel scenarios, and endings that cause them to rethink the entire book.
PREMIUM

Gates of Stone

Epic worldbuilding with extensive Asian influences, especially Indonesian, meets bold characters and detailed battles across land and sea. Note that scenes of rape and gore may be traumatic for some readers.

The Very Best of Caitlin R. Kiernan

Bodies, relationships, and the world are all changeable, shifting, and unstable in this collection by a master of dark fiction. Though influenced by Lovecraftian mythos, the work stands on its own and will be essential for Kiernan devotees.
PREMIUM

The Smoke

Ings (Wolves) crafts smart alternate history that takes a deep look at belief systems and the judgment of others based on perception. The use of genetic manipulation to create superior and lesser human species speaks to the bias that exists in the real world.
PREMIUM

The Fever King

Adults and older teens who appreciate stories with close ties among magic, science, and political machinations will find this first novel appealing.

The Very Best of the Best: 35 Years of the Year's Best Science Fiction

This anthology is another illuminating look into some of the best current sf from the last decade and more, offering a glorious range of characters, plots, and themes as well as forgotten fiction from sf's favorite authors.
PREMIUM

A People's Future of the United States: Speculative Fiction from 25 Extraordinary Writers

A timely compilation that highlights the hope and anxiety of the current political climate.
PREMIUM

Early Riser

Fforde's masterly, real-world, and socially conscious prose is filled with running jokes, amusing footnotes, and smart wordplay in this stand-alone novel. [See Prepub Alert, 8/27/18.]

Your Favorite Band Cannot Save You

This debut novella is a lean, quick read with no fat. The clever, exciting story mixes weird fiction with an engaging and mysterious plot.

The City in the Middle of the Night

Anders (All the Birds in the Sky) weaves an intricate tale of colonialism and evolution on both physical and social levels. The harsh world and well-developed characters combine with stunning storytelling that will capture readers' minds and hearts.
PREMIUM

Today I Am Carey

This exploration of artificial life in the vein of Isaac Asimov's I, Robot provides fresh insight into the human experience. Recommended for all fans of sf and novels set in a near future.
PREMIUM

Famous Men Who Never Lived

The plight of refugees gets a sf twist in this enjoyable debut from award-winning short story writer Chess. While the side plots could have been tightened, those looking for character-driven, science-light sf should give this a try.
PREMIUM

The Test

This compact novella combines issues of immigration as well as a hostage story into a tale of incredible choices.

Witches, Psys, & Talking Goats: SF/Fantasy Previews, Jun. 2019, Pt. 2 | Prepub Alert

PREMIUM

A Memory Called Empire

Politics and personalities blend with an immersive setting and beautiful prose in a debut that weaves threads of identity, assimilation, technology, and culture to offer an exceedingly well-done sf political thriller.
PREMIUM

Polaris Rising

This fun debut frolics through the space opera setup with an exciting and brave new heroine.
PREMIUM

The Fall

This sequel to The Nine is a twisting tale of science, faith, and creatures beyond imagination. Townsend's worldbuilding is rich and complex, illuminating a captivating alternate Earth.
PREMIUM

Finders

Recommended for sf fans seeking a solid romp through a well-built universe with curious technology.
PREMIUM

The Books of Earthsea:

With solid YA crossover appeal but highly enjoyable for all ages, this is especially recommended for admirers of J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and J.K. Rowling.
PREMIUM

The Kingdom of Copper

With a richly immersive setting and featuring complex familial, religious, and racial ties and divides, Chakraborty's second book in the trilogy wraps readers in a lush and magical story that takes over all the senses. [See Prepub Alert, 7/23/18.]
PREMIUM

The Haunting of Tram Car 015

This novella sequel to A Dead Djinn in Cairo keeps a tight hold through its well-crafted characters and absorbing alternate Egyptian landscape. Recommended for fans of the first book in this new series.
PREMIUM

Bayou Born

This paranormal fantasy/mystery/romance presents a compelling plot and likable characters, promising more to follow after an addictive beginning to this new series. Perfect for fans of Darynda Jones and Patricia Briggs.
PREMIUM

A Bad Deal for the Whole Galaxy

Compelling characters, clever plot points, and the whole of outer space to roam come together in this fast-paced, second book of the "Salvagers" series, offering a singular blend of sf and fantasy that will attract devoted genre fans.
PREMIUM

Fearless

While the plot is predictable and almost hackneyed, the social commentary of a person's looks being tied to sin is compelling. Tarkoff's (Arrow) screenwriter background may result in some interest from YA dystopian lovers in this title reminiscent of the "Divergent" series.
PREMIUM

In An Absent Dream

McGuire's fourth in the "Wayward Children" series takes the concepts of fairness and common sense and twists them through the doorways of a portal fantasy with an amazing landscape and characters. Lyrical prose cuts with an honesty of losing childhood innocence that eases the heartache that sometimes accompanies coming of age.
PREMIUM

Smoke and Summons

With scads of action, clear explanations of how supernatural elements function, and appealing characters with smart backstories, this first in a series will draw in fans of Cassandra Clare, Leigh Bardugo, or Brandon Sanderson.
PREMIUM

Miraculum

Night Circus fans will inevitably find this a cousin of their favorite, but readers of Katharine Dunn's Geek Love or Neil Gaiman's American Gods are more likely to enjoy it.
PREMIUM

The Absolved

An enjoyable, witty read that ponders where automation might actually take us, not just where we want it to go.
PREMIUM

Seize the Future | Spotlight on SF/Fantasy 2018

2

The Changeling, Jade City Tie for World Fantasy’s Best Novel

LJ Talks to Editor John Joseph Adams | Spotlight on SF/Fantasy 2018

Atlanta Libraries, Cosplay, and New Releases at Dragon Con 2018

PREMIUM

Rewrite: Loops in the Timescape

With a clever, twisting plot, this sequel to Timescape presents a smart sf tale of second chances. Benford takes on time travel using his own experience in physics, linking intriguing characters together through an important time in American history.
PREMIUM

Golden State

Highly recommended for fans of dystopian fiction, especially those who enjoy classics of the genre, such as George Orwell's 1984 and Aldous Huxley's Brave New World. [See Prepub Alert, 7/9/18.]
PREMIUM

Tomorrow Factory: Collected Fiction

Recommended for collections where works by William Gibson, Jeremy Robert Johnson, Nnedi Okorafor, and Dempow Torishima circulate.
PREMIUM

Black City Dragon

This fantastical follow-up to Black City Demon slides Prohibition Chicago into urban fantasy territory with a fast-paced plot and intelligent characters who keep the pages turning until the very end.
PREMIUM

Frostlands

This fast read picks up after the death of Julian, the protagonist of Splinterlands, and can be enjoyed as a stand-alone sequel to the first book in the series. Its sense of urgency inspires readers to keep going and a pale glimmer of hope at the end is welcome after the quick, harrowing ride.
PREMIUM

How To Fracture a Fairy Tale

With a glowing introduction by author Marissa Meyer, and an afterword with an author's note and poem for each story, this showcase of 28 tales highlights Yolen's delightful imagination and elegant writing in both poetry and short prose form. Her fans will be excited to see the well-crafted follow-up to The Emerald Circus.
PREMIUM

Static Ruin

This breezy, engaging read, though darker in tone, will appeal to fans of Martha Wells's "Murderbot Diaries" series.
PREMIUM

Unholy Land

Shifting perspectives will keep readers trying to catch up with this fast-paced plot involving incredible twists on multiple realities and homecoming. This latest from Campbell and World Fantasy Award winner Tidhar (Central Station) is fascinating and powerful.
PREMIUM

Someone Like Me

This latest from Carey (The Girl with All the Gifts) offers a dark, supernatural thriller that blurs the edges of the world we know. [See Prepub Alert, 5/23/18.]
PREMIUM

City of Broken Magic

Described as The Hurt Locker with magic, this fascinating debut includes a handful of battles, and in between depicts the strange land and way of life Laura faces in Amicae. Readers will be antsy for the next installment.
PREMIUM

Vita Nostra

Recommended for readers who appreciate the intensity of student bonding in extreme situations, such as in Donna Tartt's The Secret History or Lev Grossman's The Magicians, and the magical realism of Neil Gaiman, Jorge Luis Borges, and Haruki Murakami.
PREMIUM

The Tiger Flu

The latest from Lai (When Fox Is a Thousand; Salt Fish Girl) takes on the extremes of gender, disease, and ecological devastation in a cautionary tale that readers will appreciate as fiction—for now.
PREMIUM

A Pocketful of Crows

Harris (Chocolat) beautifully weaves folklore and inspiration from the Child Ballads into a longer story with vivid prose, lush settings, and characters who win your heart. Will appeal to fans of Seanan McGuire's "Wayward Children" series.
PREMIUM

The Mortal Word

Cogman's witty follow-up to The Lost Plot once again provides a historical mashup of detectives, libraries, and fantasy characters revolving around time-traveling librarian spies. A delicious mix for a range of readers.
PREMIUM

There Before the Chaos

Fans of the "Indranan War" trilogy and lovers of interstellar intrigue will be pleased.
PREMIUM

House of Rose

Purchase where real world-meets-fantasy titles are in demand.

The Towers Still Stand

Fans of alternative history will appreciate this concept of a New York where the World Trade Center buildings still stand

The Fall of Gondolin

Every Tolkien aficionado, and they are legion, will want to read this book, both for the story it tells and as a final collaboration between this legendary father-and-son duo

"Sixth World" Series Sparks a Trailblazer's Beginning | Debut Spotlight

August Genre Reads | Wyatt's World

PREMIUM

Rosewater

Thompson's (The Murders of Molly Southbourne) intriguing Afrofuturistic tale features an incredible mashup of alien contact and human-centered power, delivering a stark and gritty story that will keep readers engaged.
PREMIUM

An Easy Death

Best-selling author Harris's ("Sookie Stackhouse" and "Midnight Crossroad" series) latest thriller combines the supernatural elements she's known for with a dose of Western flair. It's a slow starter but an intriguing genre blend resulting in a mostly seamless read. Her fans won't be disappointed.
PREMIUM

Rogue Protocol

This third outing featuring Wells's introverted Murderbot (after All Systems Red and Artificial Condition) highlights a unique protagonist in search of a way to live, while learning about the faults and foibles of humanity. Continuing the fast pace and enjoyable interactions of the series' previous books, this latest entry is a refreshing and clever addition.
PREMIUM

State Tectonics

Older concludes the "Centenal Cycle" trilogy with an entertaining trip into the near future while taking a sober look at the world's current state.
PREMIUM

The Seas of Distant Stars

Recommended for fans of sf new adult narratives with strong YA crossover appeal.
PREMIUM

I Am Behind You

Swedish sensation Lundqvist's (Let the Right One In) twisting journey into the dark corners of the mind is true psychological horror. It will keep entranced and shocked readers guessing until the very end.
PREMIUM

Kill the Queen

This epic fantasy launch brings all of the action, magic, and smart cast of characters whom fans have come to expect from Estep ("Elemental Assassin" series). Readers of Chloe Neill, Kim Harrison, and Ilona Andrews will welcome this bright new heroine.
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