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US Books Received- 03/2014  Next Month / Last Month
In order to provide timely reviews, we prefer to receive Advance Reader Copies of books when possible. Send books to Gayle Surrette / Editor c/o SFRevu 16440 Baden Westwood Road Brandywine, MD 20613

Ace

Night Broken (Mercy Thompson) by Patricia Briggs (Ace 11 March 2014 / $26.95) - Product Description: Now, Mercy must deal with an unwanted guest--one that brings a threat unlike anything she's ever known.

An unexpected phone call heralds a new challenge for Mercy. Her mate Adam's ex-wife is in trouble, on the run from a stalker. Adam isn't the kind of man to turn away a person in need--and Mercy knows it. But with Christy holed up in Adam's house, Mercy can't shake the feeling that something about the situation isn't right.

Soon, her suspicions are confirmed when she learns that Christy has the farthest thing from good intentions. She wants Adam back and she's willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen, including turning Adam's pack against Mercy.

Mercy isn't about to step down without a fight, but there's a more dangerous threat circling. Christy's stalker is more than a bad man--in fact, he may not be human at all. As the bodies start piling up, Mercy must put her personal troubles aside to face a creature with the power to tear her whole world apart. (see review)

Anchor

The Folklore of Discworld: Legends, Myths, and Customs from the Discworld with Helpful Hints from Planet Earth by Terry Pratchett and Jacqueline Simpson (Anchor 25 March 2014 / $15.95) - Product Description: OFFERING INSIGHTS INTO ALL 40 DISCWORLD NOVELS
Find out. Why cheeses roll down hills. - The hazards of treacle mining. - What's so uncanny about the humble hare. - The origins of orcs (which are not the same as goblins!). - Why witches come in threes.

Legends, myths, fairytales, superstitions. Our world is full of the stories we have told ourselves about where we came from and how we got there. It is the same on Discworld, except that beings such as vampires, trolls, golems, witches and, possibly, gods, which on Earth are creatures of the imagination, are real, alive, and in some cases kicking on the Disc.

The Folklore of Discworld, coauthored by Terry Pratchett and leading British folklorist Jacqueline Simpson, is an invaluable reference for longtime Discworld fans and newcomers alike. An irreverent yet illuminating look at the living myths and folklore that are reflected, celebrated, and affectionately libeled in the uniquely imaginative universe of Discworld.

(Source: Anchor)

Angry Robot

Last God Standing by Michael Boatman (Angry Robot 25 March 2014 / $7.99) - Product Description: When God decides to quit and join the human race to see what all the fuss is about, all Hell breaks loose. Sensing his abdication, the other defunct gods of Earth's vanquished pantheons want a piece of the action He abandoned.

Meanwhile, the newly-humanised deity must discover the whereabouts and intentions of the similarly reincarnated Lucifer, and block the ascension of a murderous new God.
How is he ever going to make it as a stand-up comedian with all of this going on…? (Source: Angry Robot)

Baen

Children of the Gates by Andre Norton (Baen 25 March 2014 / $7.99) - Product Description: Two powerful science fiction adventure novels, Here Abide Monsters, and Yurth Burden, in one omni trade paperback volume from master storytelling legend, Andre Norton. Coming of age stories on fantastic and alien worlds.

Here Abide Monsters: On a world where parallel and alternate universes intersect, Celtic faery folk, modern humans, and inhabitants of a distant future share the planet's surface. There are also aliens in flying saucer which are capturing and enslaving new arrivals who fall through the "gates". One group of new arrivals meets a protector, a man who calls himself the Herald. He promises safety--but in exchange, he requires a piece of their souls in payment.

Yurth Burden: Two races share Zacar: the plains dwelling Raski and the mountain dwelling telepaths, the Yurth. The two are often in contention along their borders, and terrible war periodically breaks out between them. When a young Yurth woman goes on her coming-of-age vision quest, one young Raski warrior follows her--and together they discover a secret that will surely unbalance their world and may change Zacar forever. (Source: Baen)

Hope Rearmed (The General) by David Drake and S.M. Stirling (Baen 04 March 2014 / $14.00) - Product Description: Sequel omnibus edition to Hope Reborn. A young hero overcomes implacable foes to lead a planet fallen into a dark age back to the high point of its lost technological civilization. Contains The Anvil and The Steel in the General series.  Series relaunched in The Heretic and continuing in The Savior.

After the collapse of the galactic Web, civilizations crumbled and chaos reigned on thousands of planets. Only on planet Bellevue was there a difference. There, a Fleet Battle Computer named Center had survived from the old civilization. When it found Raj Whitehall, the man who could execute its plan for reviving human civilization, he and Center started Bellevue back on the road leading to the stars.

Now Raj Whitehall has come close to reuniting the entire planet of Bellevue. Because of his victories and because of the way he won them, Raj is loved by the people--and his army would follow him to Hell. Even those closest to him, his band of sworn companions and his wickedly subtle but utterly loyal wife, hold him in awe.

And that's the problem. For though Raj battles only in the name of his emperor and has proven his loyalty again and again, still the half-mad jealousy and fear of that emperor Clerett is about to give Raj no choice but to revolt or face death and the loss of all he has gained for freedom. (see review)

Liberty 1784: The Second War for Independence by Robert Conroy (Baen 04 March 2014 / $25.00) - Product Description: A compelling alternate history novel by the breakout author of WW II era alternate history Himmler's War and Rising Sun.

The British win the American Revolutionary War, and a desperate Washington and the American founders must make a last stand in an enclave called Liberty.

In 1781, George Washington's attempt to trap the British under Cornwallis at Yorktown ends catastrophically when the French fleet is destroyed in the Battle of the Capes. The revolution collapses, and the British begin a bloody reign of terror. A group of rebels flees westward and sets up a colony near what is now Chicago. They call it Liberty. The British, looking to finish what they started, send a very large force under Burgoyne to destroy them. Burgoyne is desperate for redemption and the Americans are equally desperate to survive.

Had the Battle of the Capes gone differently, a changed, darker, New World would have been forced into existence. But even under those dire circumstances, Liberty may still find a way! (see review)

Shadow of Freedom (Honor Harrington) by David Weber (Baen 04 March 2014 / $15.00) - Product Description: Wrong number? There are two sides to any quarrel ... unless there are more. Michelle Henke, Queen Elizabeth of Manticore's first cousin, Honor Harrington's best friend, and the commanding officer of Manticore's Tenth Fleet, is just a bit surprised when a messenger arrives from the Mobius System to inform her that the Mobius Liberation Front is prepared to rise in rebellion against the hated regime President Svein Lombroso. She can understand why anyone would want to rebel against someone like Lombroso, but why tell her about it? After all, she has problems of her own, like the minor matter of a life-or-death war against the Solarian League.

Michelle has just handed the "invincible" Solarian League Navy the most humiliating, one-sided defeat in its entire almost thousand-year history in defense of the people of the Star Empire's Talbott Quadrant. But the League is the most powerful star nation in the history of humanity. Its navy is going to be back – and this time with thousands of superdreadnoughts.

Yet she also knows scores of other star systems — some independent, some controlled by puppet regimes, and some simply conquered outright by the Solarian Office of Frontier Security — lie in the League's grip along its frontier with the Talbott Quadrant. As combat spreads from the initial confrontation, the entire frontier has begun to seethe with unrest, and Michelle sympathizes with the oppressed populations wanting only to be free of their hated masters.

And that puts her in something of a quandary when the messenger from Mobius arrives, because someone's obviously gotten a wrong number. According to him, the Mobians' uprising has been carefully planned to coordinate with a powerful outside ally: the Star Empire of Manticore. Only Manticore — and Mike Henke — have never even heard of the Mobius Liberation Front.

It's a set-up . . . and Michelle knows who's behind it. The shadowy Mesan Alignment has launched a bold move to destroy Manticore's reputation as the champion of freedom. And when the RMN doesn't arrive, when the MLF is brutally and bloodily crushed, no independent star system will ever trust Manticore again.

Mike Henke knows she has no orders from her government to assist any rebellions or liberation movements, that she has only so many ships, which can be in only so many places at a time . . . and that she can't possibly justify diverting any of her limited, outnumbered strength to missions of liberation the Star Empire never signed on for. She knows that ... and she doesn't care. No one is going to send thousands of patriots to their deaths, trusting in Manticoran help that will never come. Not on Mike Henke's watch.

Read our review of Shadow of Freedom in our March 2013 issue. (Source: Baen)

The Fall of Atlantis by Marion Zimmer Bradley (Baen 04 March 2014 / $15.00) - Product Description: A wounded Atlantean prince...a deadly battle between Dark and Light...and the sisters Deoris and Domaris, whose lives are changed utterly by the magic involving them. These are the elements of The Fall of Atlantis, Marion Zimmer Bradley's epic fantasy about that ancient and legendary realm.

On one side stand the Priests of the White Robe, guardians of powerful natural forces which could threaten the world if misused. Ranged against them are the Black Robes, sorcerers who secretly practice their dark arts in the labyrinthine caves beneath the very Temple of Light. Caught between are Domaris and Deoris, daughters of the Archpriest Talkannon, trapped in a web of deadly sorcery—the same forbidden sorcery that could bring about.

The Fall of Atlantis previously published separately as Web of Light and Web of Darkness. (Source: Baen)

The Heretic (The General) by Tony Daniel and David Drake (Baen 25 March 2014 / $7.99) - Product Description: David Drake's legendary Raj Whitehall/The General series, stunningly reborn! In a world of muskets, bows and arrows, and reptile riding nomads, a young warrior fights against a totalitarian computer devoted to stasis.

ABEL DASHIAN'S WORLD DOESN'T NEED A HERO: Duisberg is one of thousands of planets plunged into darkness and chaos by the collapse of the galactic republic, but where other worlds have begun to rebuild a star-travelling culture, Duisberg remains in an uneasy balance between mud-brick civilization and bloodthirsty barbarism.

The people of Duisberg have a god: Zentrum, a supercomputer from the ancient past. Zentrum has decided avoid another collapse by preventing civilization from rising from where it is. And because even a supercomputer and the powerful religion which it founded cannot block all progress, Zentrum has another tool: every few centuries the barbarians sweep in from the desert, slaughtering the educated classes and cowing the peasants back into submission. These are the Blood Winds, and the Blood Winds are about to blow again.

This time, however, there's a difference: Abel Dashian, son of a military officer, has received into his mind the spirit of Raj Whitehall, the most successful general in the history of the planet Bellevue--and of Center, the supercomputer which enabled Raj to shatter his planet's barbarians and permit the return of civilization.

One hero can't stop the tide of barbarians unless he has his own culture supporting him. To save Duisberg, Abel must break the power of Zentrum.

Read our review of The Heretic in our June 2013 issue. (Source: Baen)

Big Mouth House

Emma Tupper's Diary by Peter Dickinson (Big Mouth House 04 March 2014 / $12.00) - Product Description: Emma is spending the summer with her Scottish cousins--who are wonderful material for her attempt to win the School Prize for most interesting holiday diary. The cousins, lofty Andy, reserved Fiona, and fierce Roddy, are experimenting with their grandfather's dilapidated old mini-submarine to see if they can find a monster in the family loch.

Emma Tupper's Diary is a sometimes terrifying, sometimes broadly hilarious adventure novel in the spirit of From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler and I Capture the Castle. (see review)

Bundoran Press

Strange Bedfellows: An Anthology of Political Science Fiction by (Bundoran Press 11 March 2014 / $16.95) - Product Description: Science Fiction is our conversation with the future; politics are our conversation with each other. Strange Bedfellows - as in 'politics makes strange bedfellows' - contains short fiction from the best writers in the field including including Nebula Award-winner Eugie Foster; writers who are passionate about the importance of ideology and political action as a source of solutions as well as problems. (Source: Bundoran Press)

Chicken House

Where the Rock Splits the Sky by Philip Webb (Chicken House 25 March 2014 / $17.99) - Product Description: The moon has been split, and the Visitors have Earth in their alien grip. But the captive planet? That's not her problem. Megan just wants to track down her missing dad.

The world stopped turning long before Megan was born. Ever since the Visitors split the moon and stilled the Earth, permanent sunset is all anyone has known. But now, riding her trusty steed Cisco, joined by her posse, Kelly and Luis, Megan is on the run from her Texas hometown, journeying across the vast, dystopic American West to hunt down her father. To find him, she must face the Zone, a notorious landscape where the laws of nature do not apply. The desert can play deadly tricks on the mind, and the quest will push Megan past her limits. But to solve the mystery of not just her missing father but of the paralyzed planet itself, she must survive it--and an alien showdown. (Source: Chicken House)

DAW

Immortal Muse by Stephen Leigh (DAW 04 March 2014 / $24.95) - Product Description: An immortal Muse whose very survival depends on the creativity she nurtures within her lovers. Another immortal who feeds not on artistry but on pain and torment. A chase through time, with two people bound together in enmity and fury. Magic and science melded together into one, and an array of the famous and infamous, caught up unawares in an ages-long battle.

Immortal Muse is a tale that takes the reader on a fascinating journey from Paris of the late 1300s with the alchemists Perenelle and Nicolas Flamel, to contemporary New York City. Along the way, there are interludes with Bernini in Rome in 1635; with Vivaldi in Venice of 1737; with Antoine-Laurent de Lavoisier and Robespierre in the Paris of the French Revolution; with William Blake and John Polidori in 1814; with Gustav Klimt in fin de sičcle Vienna; with Charlotte Salomon in WWII France.  And in modern-day New York, a complicated dance of love and violence finally brings a resolution to the centuries-old deadly feud. (see review)

Doubleday

Raising Steam (Discworld) by Terry Pratchett (Doubleday 25 March 2014 / $26.95) - Product Description: Change is afoot in Ankh-Morpork - Discworld's first steam engine has arrived, and once again Moist von Lipwig finds himself with a new and challenging job.

To the consternation of the patrician, Lord Vetinari, a new invention has arrived in Ankh-Morpork – a great clanging monster of a machine that harnesses the power of all of the elements: earth, air, fire and water. This being Ankh-Morpork, it’s soon drawing astonished crowds, some of whom caught the zeitgeist early and arrive armed with notepads and very sensible rainwear. Moist von Lipwig is not a man who enjoys hard work – as master of the Post Office, the Mint and the Royal Bank his input is, of course, vital . . . but largely dependent on words, which are fortunately not very heavy and don’t always need greasing. However, he does enjoy being alive, which makes a new job offer from Vetinari hard to refuse.

Steam is rising over Discworld, driven by Mister Simnel, the man wi’ t’flat cap and sliding rule who has an interesting arrangement with the sine and cosine. Moist will have to grapple with gallons of grease, goblins, a fat controller with a history of throwing employees down the stairs and some very angry dwarfs if he’s going to stop it all going off the rails.

(see review)

Dybbuk Press

King David and the Spiders from Mars by (Dybbuk Press 04 March 2014 / $12.75) - Product Description: A ghost haunts King David's family. Brothers devour their enemies and each other. A rabbi opens a Chabad House in a sinister New England town. In this book, you will find seven stories as demented and horrifying as the Bible that inspired them.

Dark and enticing, the stories in King David & the Spiders from Mars explore Biblical themes with a paradoxical combination of religious irreverence and respect for the literary richness of the texts. Marked by lush prose, often disturbing at a gut level, these are stories that stay with you. -- Ilana Teitelbaum. (Source: Dybbuk Press)

Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing

Tesseracts Seventeen: Speculating Canada from Coast to Coast to Coast by (Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing 01 March 2014 / $16.95) - Product Description: A tesseract is a four-dimensional equivalent of a cube, or a hypercube, having sixteen corners. A tesseract was more than what it seemed, had more surfaces than you first thought, and had a depth that changed depending on how you looked at it.

In reading the many submissions we found that there were tales of Wendigo, werewolves, vampires and a host of reanimated dead, though not all of them zombies. There were gentle tales of transformation and other terrors of madness and encountering the demons we know and fear. Character faced the trials of space and the spaces within.

And indeed, from Canada's inland border with the US, to the warmer Pacific waters, to the chilly depths of the Maritime Atlantic, and the mysterious tundra of the North, these are the reaches of Canada's geography. But the mindset of Canada's writers stretches farther. Tesseracts 17 is rich with tales about people: there are housewives and men who find themselves in unusual and terrifying circumstances, children who deal with the transformations of their lives and their worlds, potters, keepers of light, wine reviewers, out-of-work graduates, pilots, apprentice chefs, writers, yak herders, dead actors, game leaders, and those who just have a job to do. (Source: Edge Science Fiction and Fantasy Publishing)

Hades Publications

The Puzzle Box by Randy McCharles, Billie Milholland, Eileen Bell, and Ryan McFadden (Hades Publications 15 March 2014 / $14.95) - Product Description: An intriguing anthology where reality is transient and the puzzle box holds the key to the meaning of life.

Archeology Professor Albert Mallory understands reality. He knows the way the world works. When he steals an ancient puzzle box to pay off gambling debts, he thinks the only mysterious thing about the artifact is how to get it open. But when a stranger appears at Albert's door demanding to see the box, Albert is plunged into mysteries he never dreamt possible.

Through the tales of four others who succeeded in opening the puzzle box — a musician named Warlock with a weakness for witches; photographer Autumn Bailey, with a strange link to the past; video store clerk Angela Matterly with those unworldly eyes; and a comic book illustrator called Sam, on a quest for his life--Albert learns that reality is transient and the way the world works is not found in text books. (see review)

Urban Green Man: An Archetype of Renewal by (Hades Publications 15 March 2014 / $14.95) - Product Description: The stories in this anthology are ripe with magic of new beginnings and will change the way you look at life, forever.

Psychologist Carl Jung once suggested that an archetype will reappear in a new form to redress imbalances in society exactly when it is needed. Perhaps the Green Man is rising yet again just in time to help us cultivate a harmonious and sustainable relationship with Nature.

Your imagination will run wild. The vibrant stories presented in this anthology are all new and original. With an introduction by Charles de Lint. Urban Green Man is a large anthology of urban and contemporary short literature; from an international cast of authors.

Every story follows the theme of renewal surrounding the mythology of the Green Man. The mystical face of the Green Man can be found on churches and other buildings throughout northern Europe. It is believed that the the Green Man mythology developed independently in various cultures and is a remnant of ancient pagan beliefs. The human face, hidden in the green foliage, shows a longing for the natural world and reminds us that we are dependent on a healthy planet not only for physical sustenance, but for our mental health as well.

Today's Green Man is no longer a forgotten mythology relegated to garden statuary. It is as relevant today as it was in ancient times, and these stories will remind you of the myths' importance. (Source: Hades Publications)

Jo Fletcher Books

The Detainee by Peter Liney (Jo Fletcher Books 11 March 2014 / $26.99) - Product Description: The Island is a place of hopelessness. The Island is death. And it is to this place that all the elderly and infirm are shipped, the scapegoats for the collapse of society. There's no escape, not from the punishment satellites that deliver instant judgment for any crime--including escape attempts--and not from the demons that come on foggy nights, when the satellites are all but blind. But when one of the Island's inhabitants, the aging "Big Guy" Clancy, finds a network of tunnels beneath the waste, there is suddenly hope--for love, for escape, and for the chance to fight back. (Source: Jo Fletcher Books)

LucasBooks

Honor Among Thieves: Star Wars (Empire and Rebellion) by James S.A. Corey (LucasBooks 04 March 2014 / $25.00) - Product Description: Nebula and Hugo Award nominees Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck--writing as James S.A. Corey--make their Star Wars debut in this brand-new epic adventure featuring Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, and Princess Leia Organa. The action begins after the destruction of the Death Star in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope.

When the Empire threatens the galaxy's new hope, will Han, Luke, and Leia become its last chance? When the mission is to extract a high-level rebel spy from the very heart of the Empire, Leia Organa knows the best man for the job is Han Solo--something the princess and the smuggler can finally agree on. After all, for a guy who broke into an Imperial cell block and helped destroy the Death Star, the assignment sounds simple enough.

But when Han locates the brash rebel agent, Scarlet Hark, she's determined to stay behind enemy lines. A pirate plans to sell a cache of stolen secrets that the Empire would destroy entire worlds to protect--including the planet where Leia is currently meeting with rebel sympathizers. Scarlet wants to track down the thief and steal the bounty herself, and Han has no choice but to go along if he's to keep everyone involved from getting themselves killed. From teeming city streets to a lethal jungle to a trap--filled alien temple, Han, Chewbacca, Leia, and their daring new comrade confront one ambush, double cross, and firestorm after another as they try to keep crucial intel out of Imperial hands.

But even with the crack support of Luke Skywalker's x-wing squadron, the Alliance heroes may be hopelessly outgunned in their final battle for the highest of stakes: the power to liberate the galaxy from tyranny or ensure the Empire's reign of darkness forever. (Source: LucasBooks)

Orbit

The Fell Sword (The Traitor Son Cycle) by Miles Cameron (Orbit 11 March 2014 / $17.00) - Product Description: Miles Cameron weaves a tale of magic and depravity in the sequel to The Red Knight.

Loyalty costs money. Betrayal, on the other hand, is free.

When the Emperor is taken hostage, the Red Knight and his men find their services in high demand -- and themselves surrounded by enemies. The country is in revolt, the capital city is besieged and any victory will be hard won. But the Red Knight has a plan.

The question is, can he negotiate the political, magical, real and romantic battlefields at the same time -- especially when he intends to be victorious on them all? (Source: Orbit)

The Lascar's Dagger: The Forsaken Lands by Glenda Larke (Orbit 18 March 2014 / $15.00) - Product Description: Saker appears to be a simple priest, but in truth he's a spy for the head of his faith. Wounded in the line of duty by a Lascar sailor's blade, the weapon seems to follow him home. Unable to discard it, nor the sense of responsibility it brings, Saker can only follow its lead.

The dagger puts Saker on a journey to distant shores, on a path that will reveal terrible secrets about the empire, about the people he serves, and destroy the life he knows. The Lascar's dagger demands a price, and that price will be paid in blood. (Source: Orbit)

Truth and Fear (The Wolfhound Century) by Peter Higgins (Orbit 25 March 2014 / $26.00) - Product Description: Investigator Lom returns to Mirgorod and finds the city in the throes of a crisis. The war against the Archipelago is not going well. Enemy divisions are massing outside the city, air raids are a daily occurrence and the citizens are being conscripted into the desperate defense of the city.

But Lom has other concerns. The police are after him, the mystery of the otherworldly Pollandore remains and the vast Angel is moving, turning all of nature against the city. But will the horrors of war overtake all their plans? (Source: Orbit)

Pyr

Blood and Iron (The Book of the Black Earth) by Jon Sprunk (Pyr 11 March 2014 / $18.00) - Product Description: It starts with a shipwreck following a magical storm at sea. Horace, a soldier from the west, had joined the Great Crusade against the heathens of Akeshia after the deaths of his wife and son from plague. When he washes ashore, he finds himself at the mercy of the very people he was sent to kill, who speak a language and have a culture and customs he doesn't even begin to understand.

Not long after, Horace is pressed into service as a house slave. But this doesn't last. The Akeshians discover that Horace was a latent sorcerer, and he is catapulted from the chains of a slave to the halls of power in the queen's court. Together with Jirom, an ex-mercenary and gladiator, and Alyra, a spy in the court, he will seek a path to free himself and the empire's caste of slaves from a system where every man and woman must pay the price of blood or iron. Before the end, Horace will have paid dearly in both. (Source: Pyr)

The Barrow by Mark Smylie (Pyr 04 March 2014 / $18.00) - Product Description: When a small crew of scoundrels, would-be heroes, deviants, and ruffians discover a map that they believe will lead them to a fabled sword buried in the barrow of a long-dead wizard, they think they've struck it rich. But their hopes are dashed when the map turns out to be cursed and then is destroyed in a magical ritual. The loss of the map leaves them dreaming of what might have been, until they rediscover the map in a most unusual and unexpected place.

Stjepan Black-Heart, suspected murderer and renegade royal cartographer; Erim, a young woman masquerading as a man; Gilgwyr, brothel owner extraordinaire; Leigh, an exiled magus under an ignominious cloud; Godewyn Red-Hand, mercenary and troublemaker; Arduin Orwain, scion of a noble family brought low by scandal; and Arduin's sister Annwyn, the beautiful cause of that scandal: together they form a cross-section of the Middle Kingdoms of the Known World, brought together by accident and dark design, on a quest that will either get them all in the history books, or get them all killed. (Source: Pyr)

Scholastic Press

The Finisher by David Baldacci (Scholastic Press 04 March 2014 / $17.99) - Product Description: Why would Quentin Herms flee into the Quag? There was nothing in the Quag except certain death.

Vega Jane has never left the village of Wormwood. But this isn't unusual -- nobody has ever left the village of Wormwood. At least not until Quentin Herms vanishes into the unknown.

Vega knows Quentin didn't just leave -- he was chased. And he's left behind a very dangerous trail of clues that only she can decode.

The Quag is a dark forest filled with terrifying beasts and bloodthirsty Outliers. But just as deadly are the threats that exist within the walls of Wormwood. It is a place built on lies, where influential people are willing to kill to keep their secrets. Vega is determined to uncover the truth -- but the closer she gets, the more she risks her life. (see review)

Small Beer Press

Questionable Practices: Stories by Eileen Gunn (Small Beer Press 11 March 2014 / $16.00) - Product Description: Good intentions aren't everything. Sometimes things don't quite go the way you planned. And sometimes you don't plan.... This collection of sixteen stories (and one lonely poem) wittily chart the ways trouble can ensue. No actual human beings were harmed in the creation of this book.

Stories from Eileen Gunn are always a cause for celebration. Where will she lead us? "Up the Fire Road" to a slightly alternate world. Four stories into steampunk's heart. Into the golem's heart. Yet never where we might expect. (see review)

Solaris

Age of Shiva (Pantheon) by James Lovegrove (Solaris 25 March 2014 / $8.99) - Product Description: A team of godlike super-powered beings based on the ten avatars of Vishnu from Hindu mythology is assembled, but are they in fact a harbinger of apocalypse? The latest standalone novel in the best selling Pantheon series.

Zachary Bramwell, better known as the comics artist Zak Zap, is pushing forty and wondering why his life isn't as exciting as the lives of the superheroes he draws. Then he's shanghaied by black-suited goons and flown to Mount Meru, a vast complex built atop an island in the Maldives. There, Zak meets a trio of billionaire businessmen who put him to work designing costumes for a team of godlike super-powered beings based on the ten avatars of Vishnu from Hindu mythology.

The Ten Avatars battle demons and aliens and seem to be the saviours of a world teetering on collapse. But their presence is itself a harbinger of apocalypse. The Vedic "fourth age" of civilisation, Kali Yuga, is coming to an end, and Zak has a ringside seat for the final, all-out war that threatens the destruction of Earth. (see review)

Talus and the Frozen King by Graham Edwards (Solaris 25 March 2014 / $7.99) - Product Description: Meet Talus – the world's first detective.

A dead warrior king frozen in winter ice. Six grieving sons, each with his own reason to kill. Two weary travellers caught up in a web of suspicion and deceit.


Meet Talus – the world's first detective.

A dead warrior king frozen in winter ice. Six grieving sons, each with his own reason to kill. Two weary travellers caught up in a web of suspicion and deceit.
In a distant time long before our own, wandering bard Talus and his companion Bran journey to the island realm of Creyak, where the king has been murdered. From clues scattered among the island's mysterious barrows and stone circles, they begin their search for his killer. But do the answers lie in this world or the next?
Nobody is above suspicion, from the king's heir to the tribal shaman, from the servant woman steeped in herb-lore to the visiting warlord whose unexpected arrival throws the whole tribe into confusion. And when death strikes again, Talus and Bran realise nothing is what it seems.
Creyak is place of secrets and spirits, mystery and myth. It will take a clever man indeed to unravel the truth. The kind of man this ancient world has not seen before. (see review)

St. Martin's Griffin

Code Zero (Joe Ledger) by Jonathan Maberry (St. Martin's Griffin 25 March 2014 / $15.99) - Product Description: For years the Department of Military Sciences has fought to stop terrorists from using radical bioweapons—designer plagues, weaponized pathogens, genetically modified viruses, and even the zombie plague that first brought Ledger into the DMS. These terrible weapons have been locked away in the world's most secure facility. Until now. Joe Ledger and Echo Team are scrambled when a highly elite team of killers breaks the unbreakable security and steals the world's most dangerous weapons. Within days there are outbreaks of mass slaughter and murderous insanity across the American heartland. Can Joe Ledger stop a brilliant and devious master criminal from turning the Land of the Free into a land of the dead? (Sequel to Patient Zero.) (see review)

Subterranean Press

Minding the Stars: The Early Jack Vance, Vol. 4 by Jack Vance (Subterranean Press 01 March 2014 / $350.00 / $45.0) - Book Description: Throughout his long and impressive career as a celebrated professional storyteller, Jack Vance showed a fascination not only with having characters solve mysteries in all sorts of dramatic and wondrous situations using their powers of observation, deduction and common sense, but also with the possibility of higher states of mind in play, other realms of existence, even spirit worlds.

Vance approached such things with a healthy, properly wary, scientific curiosity, even while embracing the liberties allowed any popular entertainer, and so made the exploration of such higher states part of his stock in trade.

Whether richly displayed in his Dying Earth stories with their wizardly spellcasting, eldritch beings and strange dimensions, or in his science fiction tales with the incredible mental powers afforded races like the Green Chasch, the Fwai-chi, the Meks of Etamin 9 besieging the final human strongholds in The Last Castle, even given to divergent human peoples on Koryphon, Maske and countless other worlds, or to the likes of his most extraordinary Demon Prince, Howard Alan Treesong, Vance was forever drawn to what else might comprise human (and other) natures in all their myriad forms.

Minding the Stars: The Early Jack Vance, Volume 4, reflects this beguiling blend of the practical and the otherworldly, combining tales that explore the workings of such mental powers with other stories selected from the earlier days of the Grandmaster’s illustrious career. (see review)

The Compleat Crow by Brian Lumley (Subterranean Press 31 March 2014 / $35.00) - Book Description: To many thousands of readers worldwide Titus Crow is the psychic sleuth--the cosmic voyager and investigator--of Brian Lumley's Cthulhu Mythos novels, from The Burrowers Beneath to Elysia.

But before The Burrowers and Crow's Transition, his exploits were chronicled in a series of short stories and novellas uncollected in the USA except in limited editions. Now these stories can be told again. From "Inception" which tells of Crow's origins, to "The Black Recalled", a tale of vengeance from beyond the grave, here in one volume, from the best-selling author of the epic Necroscope series, is The Compleat Crow. (see review)

Tor Books

Lockstep by Karl Schroeder (Tor Books 25 March 2014 / $26.99) - Product Description: When seventeen-year-old Toby McGonigal finds himself lost in space, separated from his family, he expects his next drift into cold sleep to be his last. After all, the planet he's orbiting is frozen and sunless, and the cities are dead. But when Toby wakes again, he's surprised to discover a thriving planet, a strange and prosperous galaxy, and something stranger still—that he's been asleep for 14,000 years.

Welcome to the Lockstep Empire, where civilization is kept alive by careful hibernation. Here cold sleeps can last decades and waking moments mere weeks. Its citizens survive for milennia, traveling asleep on long voyages between worlds. Not only is Lockstep the new center of the galaxy, but Toby is shocked to learn that the Empire is still ruled by its founding family: his own.

Toby's brother Peter has become a terrible tyrant. Suspicious of the return of his long-lost brother,  whose rightful inheritance also controls the lockstep hibernation cycles, Peter sees Toby as a threat to his regime. Now, with the help of a lockstep girl named Corva, Toby must survive the forces of this new Empire, outwit his siblings, and save human civilization. (see review)

Mentats of Dune by Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson (Tor Books 11 March 2014 / $27.99) - Product Description:

In Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson's Mentats of Dune, the thinking machines have been defeated but the struggle for humanity's future continues.

Gilbertus Albans has founded the Mentat School, a place where humans can learn the efficient techniques of thinking machines. But Gilbertus walks an uneasy line between his own convictions and compromises in order to survive the Butlerian fanatics, led by the madman Manford Torondo and his Swordmaster Anari Idaho. Mother Superior Raquella attempts to rebuild her Sisterhood School on Wallach IX, with her most talented and ambitious student, Valya Harkonnen, who also has another goal—to exact revenge on Vorian Atreides, the legendary hero of the Jihad, whom she blames for her family's downfall.

Meanwhile, Josef Venport conducts his own war against the Butlerians. VenHold Spacing Fleet controls nearly all commerce thanks to the superior mutated Navigators that Venport has created, and he places a ruthless embargo on any planet that accepts Manford Torondo's anti-technology pledge, hoping to starve them into submission. But fanatics rarely surrender easily . . .

The Mentats, the Navigators, and the Sisterhood all strive to improve the human race, but each group knows that as Butlerian fanaticism grows stronger, the battle will be to choose the path of humanity's future—whether to embrace civilization, or to plunge into an endless dark age.
(Source: Tor Books)

The Burning Dark (Spider War) by Adam Christopher (Tor Books 25 March 2014 / $25.99) - Product Description: Back in the day, Captain Abraham Idaho Cleveland had led the Fleet into battle against an implacable machine intelligence capable of devouring entire worlds. But after saving a planet, and getting a bum robot knee in the process, he finds himself relegated to one of the most remote backwaters in Fleetspace to oversee the decommissioning of a semi-deserted space station well past its use-by date.

But all is not well aboard the U-Star Coast City. The station's reclusive Commandant is nowhere to be seen, leaving Cleveland to deal with a hostile crew on his own. Persistent malfunctions plague the station's systems while interference from a toxic purple star makes even ordinary communications problematic. Alien shadows and whispers seem to haunt the lonely corridors and airlocks, fraying the nerves of everyone aboard.

Isolated and friendless, Cleveland reaches out to the universe via an old-fashioned space radio, only to tune in to a strange, enigmatic signal: a woman's voice that seems to echo across a thousand light-years of space. But is the transmission just a random bit of static from the past--or a warning of an undying menace beyond mortal comprehension? (Source: Tor Books)

The Pilgrims (The Pendulum Trilogy) by Will Elliott (Tor Books 18 March 2014 / $26.99) - Product Description: Eric Albright is a twenty-six-year-old journalist living in London. That is to say he would be a journalist if he got off his backside. But this luckless slacker isn't all bad—he has a soft spot for his sometimes friend Stuart Casey, the homeless old drunk who mostly lives under the railway bridge near his flat. Eric is willing to let his life just drift by…until the day a small red door appears on the graffiti-covered wall of the bridge, and a gang of strange-looking people--Eric's pretty sure one of them is a giant--dash out of the door and rob the nearby newsagent. From that day on Eric and Case haunt the arch, waiting for the door to reappear.

When it does, both Eric and Case choose to go through...to the land of Levaal. A place where a mountain-sized dragon with the powers of a god lies sleeping beneath a great white castle. In the castle the sinister Lord Vous rules with an iron fist, and the Project, designed to effect his transformation into an immortal spirit, nears completion. But Vous's growing madness is close to consuming him, together with his fear of an imaginary being named Shadow. And soon Eric may lend substance to that fear. An impossibly vast wall divides Levall, and no one has ever seen what lies beyond. Eric and Casey are called Pilgrims, and may have powers that no one in either world yet understands, and soon the wall may be broken. What will enter from the other side? (Source: Tor Books)

The Raven's Shadow (Wild Hunt) by Elspeth Cooper (Tor Books 11 March 2014 / $27.99) - Product Description: The Raven's Shadow, the third book of Elspeth Cooper's The Wild Hunt series finds war brewing on both sides of the Veil between the worlds.

The desert of Gimrael is aflame with violence, and in the far north an ancient hatred is about to spill over into the renewal of a war that, a thousand years ago, forged an empire. This time, it may shatter one.

Wrestling with his failing grip on the power of the Song, and still trying to come to terms with the horrifying events he witnessed in El Maqqam, Gair returns to the mainland with only one thing on his mind: vengeance. It may cost him his life, but when everything that he had to live for is being stripped away from him, that may be a fair price to pay.

Old friends and old foes converge in a battle of wills to stem the tide of the Nimrothi clans as they charge south to reclaim the lands lost in the Founding Wars. If they succeed, the rest of the empire may be their next target. And with the Wild Hunt at their head, the overstretched Imperial Army may not be enough to stop them. (see review)

The Tropic of Serpents: A Memoir by Lady Trent by Marie Brennan (Tor Books 04 March 2014 / $25.99) - Product Description: Attentive readers of Lady Trent's earlier memoir, A Natural History of Dragons, are already familiar with how a bookish and determined young woman named Isabella first set out on the historic course that would one day lead her to becoming the world's premier dragon naturalist. Now, in this remarkably candid second volume, Lady Trent looks back at the next stage of her illustrious (and occasionally scandalous) career.

Three years after her fateful journeys through the forbidding mountains of Vystrana, Mrs. Camherst defies family and convention to embark on an expedition to the war-torn continent of Eriga, home of such exotic draconian species as the grass-dwelling snakes of the savannah, arboreal tree snakes, and, most elusive of all, the legendary swamp-wyrms of the tropics.

The expedition is not an easy one. Accompanied by both an old associate and a runaway heiress, Isabella must brave oppressive heat, merciless fevers, palace intrigues, gossip, and other hazards in order to satisfy her boundless fascination with all things draconian, even if it means venturing deep into the forbidden jungle known as the Green Hell ... where her courage, resourcefulness, and scientific curiosity will be tested as never before. (Source: Tor Books)

Words of Radiance (Stormlight Archive, #2) by Brandon Sanderson (Tor Books 04 March 2014 / $28.99) - Product Description: The Stormlight Archive sequence began in 2010 with the New York Times bestseller The Way of Kings. Now, the eagerly anticipated Words of Radiance continues the epic story and answers many of your questions.

Six years ago, the Assassin in White, a hireling of the inscrutable Parshendi, assassinated the Alethi king on the very night a treaty between men and Parshendi was being celebrated. So began the Vengeance Pact among the highprinces of Alethkar and the War of Reckoning against the Parshendi.

Now the Assassin is active again, murdering rulers all over the world of Roshar, using his baffling powers to thwart every bodyguard and elude all pursuers. Among his prime targets is Highprince Dalinar, widely considered the power behind the Alethi throne. His leading role in the war would seem reason enough, but the Assassin's master has much deeper motives.

Expected by his enemies to die the miserable death of a military slave, Kaladin survived to be given command of the royal bodyguards, a controversial first for a low-status "darkeyes". Now he must protect the king and Dalinar from every common peril as well as the distinctly uncommon threat of the Assassin, all while secretly struggling to master remarkable new powers that are somehow linked to his honorspren, Syl.

Brilliant but troubled Shallan strives along a parallel path. Despite being broken in ways she refuses to acknowledge, she bears a terrible burden: to somehow prevent the return of the legendary Voidbringers and the civilization-ending Desolation that will follow. The secrets she needs can be found at the Shattered Plains, but just arriving there proves more difficult than she could have imagined.

Meanwhile, at the heart of the Shattered Plains, the Parshendi are making an epochal decision. Hard pressed by years of Alethi attacks, their numbers ever shrinking, they are convinced by their war leader, Eshonai, to risk everything on a desperate gamble with the very supernatural forces they once fled. The possible consequences for Parshendi and humans alike, indeed, for Roshar itself, are as dangerous as they are incalculable. (see review)

Working God's Mischief (Instrumentalities of the Night) by Glen Cook (Tor Books 11 March 2014 / $27.99) - Product Description: Arnhand, Castauriga, and Navaya lost their kings. The Grail Empire lost its empress. The Church lost its Patriarch, though he lives on as a fugitive. The Night lost Kharoulke the Windwalker, an emperor amongst the most primal and terrible gods. The Night goes on, in dread.  The world goes on, in dread.  The ice builds and slides southward.

New kings come. A new empress will rule. Another rump polishes the Patriarchal Throne.

But there is something new under the sun. The oldest and fiercest of the Instrumentalities has been destroyed--by a mortal. There is no new Windwalker, nor will there ever be.

The world, battered by savage change, limps toward its destiny. And the ice is coming. (Source: Tor Books)

Tor Teen

Resistance by Jenna Black (Tor Teen 11 March 2014 / $9.99) - Product Description: Resistance is the second installment in acclaimed author Jenna Black's YA SF romance series.

Nate Hayes is a Replica. The real Nate was viciously murdered, but thanks to Paxco's groundbreaking human replication technology, a duplicate was created that holds all of the personality and the memories of the original. Or ..almost all. Nate's backup didn't extend to the days preceding his murder, leaving him searching for answers about who would kill him, and why. Now, after weeks spent attempting to solve his own murder with the help of his best friend and betrothed, Nadia Lake, Nate has found the answers he was seeking...and he doesn't like what he's discovered.

The original Nate was killed because he knew a secret that could change everything. Thanks to Nadia's quick thinking, the two of them hold the cards now—or think they do.

Unfortunately, neither of them fully understands just how deep the conspiracy runs. (see review)

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