Things have calmed down a bit after two crazy release weeks. Still good stuff this week, though, so you might be able to find something you want to read. I’m strangely drawn to Year Zero, because it sounds so wackalicious. Wait…is wackalicious a word? It is now.
Now…Reader’s Choice… As always, leave a comment telling me the book here you’d most like to win, and maybe random.org will make your wishes come true. International? Of course!
Now, here we go….
Dark Water (Siren, Book 3), by Tricia Rayburn (July 10, Egmont)
When seventeen-year-old Vanessa reunites with her biological mother, she faces the dilemma of a siren’s existence, that in order to survive she must endanger the lives of those she loves most. Young adult.
No Peace for the Damned, by Megan Powell (July 10, 47North)
Magnolia Kelch is no stranger to pain. Beautiful and powerful, she’s spent her entire life at the mercy of her sadistic father and the rest of the Kelch clan, who have tortured her and tested the limits of her powers. After one particularly heinous night that leaves Magnolia nearly dead, she finally sees her chance for escape. But this first taste of freedom is short-lived when she collides with Thirteen, head of a secret organization dedicated to fighting supernatural criminals. Even as she’s coming to grips with her new life as a recruit in the group and the horrific memories that still haunt her, she’s conflicted by her growing attraction to fellow team member Theo and the emergence of new, untested abilities. After months of grueling training, her loyalty to the team is tested when she learns her target is the Network’s most wanted: the Kelch family.
Poison Tree, by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes (July 10, Delacorte)
Two twentysomething young women try to outrun their very different pasts, and figure out where they fit in and who they might become. Each has landed in a more “normal” place, and each wonders if, like a tattoo that can’t be covered up, they can ever really fit into “normal.” Young adult.
Shadow of Night (All Souls, Book 2), by Deborah Harkness (July 10, Viking)
Picking up from A Discovery of Witches’ cliffhanger ending, Shadow of Night plunges Diana and Matthew into Elizabethan London, a world of spies, subterfuge, and a coterie of Matthew’s old friends, the mysterious School of Night that includes Christopher Marlowe and Walter Raleigh. Here, Diana must locate a witch to tutor her in magic, Matthew is forced to confront a past he thought he had put to rest, and the mystery of Ashmole 782 deepens.
So Close to You, by Rachel Carter (July 10, HarperTeen)
All her life Lydia Bentley has heard stories about the strange things that took place at the abandoned military base near her home and the people who’ve disappeared over the years. Stories about people like her own great-grandfather. When Lydia stumbles into a portal that transports her to a dangerous and strange new reality, she discovers that all the stories she’s ever heard about the Montauk Project are true, and that she’s in the middle of one of the most dangerous experiments in history.
The Forsaken, by Lisa M. Stasse (July 10, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers)
As an obedient orphan of the U.N.A. (the super-country that was once Mexico, the U.S., and Canada), Alenna learned at an early age to blend in and be quiet—having your parents taken by the police will do that to a girl. But Alenna can’t help but stand out when she fails a test that all sixteen-year-olds have to take: The test says she has a high capacity for brutal violence, and so she is sent to The Wheel, an island where all would-be criminals end up. The life expectancy of prisoners on The Wheel is just two years, but with dirty, violent, and chaotic conditions, the time seems a lot longer as Alenna is forced to deal with civil wars for land ownership and machines that snatch kids out of their makeshift homes. Desperate, she and the other prisoners concoct a potentially fatal plan to flee the island. Young adult.
The Impeachment of Abraham Lincoln, by Stephen L. Carter (July 10, Knopf)
Stephen L. Carter’s novel takes as its starting point an alternate history: President Abraham Lincoln survives the assassination attempt at Ford’s Theatre on April 14, 1865. Two years later he is charged with overstepping his constitutional authority, both during and after the Civil War, and faces an impeachment trial . . .Twenty-one-year-old Abigail Canner is a young black woman with a degree from Oberlin, a letter of employment from the law firm that has undertaken Lincoln’s defense, and the iron-strong conviction, learned from her late mother, that “whatever limitations society might place on ordinary negroes, they would never apply to her.” And so Abigail embarks on a life that defies the norms of every stratum of Washington society: working side by side with a white clerk, meeting the great and powerful of the nation, including the president himself. But when Lincoln’s lead counsel is found brutally murdered on the eve of the trial, Abigail is plunged into a treacherous web of intrigue and conspiracy reaching the highest levels of the divided government.
Insignia, by S.J. Kincaid (July 10, Katherine Tegen)
More than anything, Tom Raines wants to be important, though his shadowy life is anything but that. For years, Tom’s drifted from casino to casino with his unlucky gambler of a dad, gaming for their survival. Keeping a roof over their heads depends on a careful combination of skill, luck, con artistry, and staying invisible. Then one day, Tom stops being invisible. Someone’s been watching his virtual-reality prowess, and he’s offered a place at the Pentagonal Spire, an elite military academy. There, Tom’s instincts for combat will be put to the test, and if he passes, he’ll become a member of the Intrasolar Forces, helping to lead his country to victory in World War Three. Finally, he’ll be someone important: a superhuman war machine with the tech skills that every virtual-reality warrior envies. Young adult.
The Last Policeman, by Ben H. Winters (July 10, Quirk)
What’s the point in solving murders if we’re all going to die soon, anyway?Detective Hank Palace has faced this question ever since asteroid 2011GV1 hovered into view. There’s no chance left. No hope. Just six precious months until impact. The Last Policeman presents a fascinating portrait of a pre-apocalyptic United States. The economy spirals downward while crops rot in the fields. Churches and synagogues are packed. People all over the world are walking off the job—but not Hank Palace. He’s investigating a death by hanging in a city that sees a dozen suicides every week—except this one feels suspicious, and Palace is the only cop who cares.
The Prankster, by James Polster (July 10, 47North)
Time-traveling alien Pom Trager has used the gullible denizens of Earth as fodder for his practical jokes throughout the ages, with the pyramids, Picasso, and several US presidents among his more modest pranks. Why does he do it? To boost the ratings of The Prankster, his home planet’s most popular reality show.But when a system snafu lands Trager in the wrong place, he finds himself at the mercy of the very species he’s made into a galactic laughingstock. His only allies are the hapless assistant he just fired and an Earth woman who lends a hand against her better judgment.
Year Zero, by Rob Reid (July 10, Del Rey)
Low-level entertainment lawyer Nick Carter thinks it’s a prank when a redheaded mullah and a curvaceous nun show up at his office. But Frampton and Carly are highly advanced, somewhat bumbling extraterrestrials, who have news. The entire cosmos has been hopelessly hooked on humanity’s music ever since “Year Zero” (1977 to us), when American pop songs first reached alien ears. This addiction has driven a vast intergalactic society to commit the biggest copyright violation ever. The resulting fines and penalties have bankrupted the whole universe and humans suddenly own everything. Nick, an unlikely galaxy-hopping hero, now has forty-eight hours to save humanity, while hopefully wowing the hot girl who lives down the hall.
House of Shadows, by Rachel Neumeier (July 10, Orbit)
Orphaned, two sisters are left to find their own fortunes. Sweet and proper, Karah’s future seems secure at a glamorous Flower House. She could be pampered for the rest of her life… if she agrees to play their game. Nemienne, neither sweet nor proper, has fewer choices. Left with no alternative, she accepts a mysterious mage’s offer of an apprenticeship. Agreeing means a home and survival, but can Nemienne trust the mage?
The Last Guardian (Artemis Fowl, Book 8), by Eoin Colfer (July 10, Hyperion)
Seemingly nothing in this world daunts the young criminal mastermind Artemis Fowl. In the fairy world, however, there is a small thing that has gotten under his skin on more than one occasion: Opal Koboi. The evil pixie is wreaking havoc yet again. This time his arch rival has somehow reanimated dead fairy warriors who were buried in the grounds of Fowl Manor. Their spirits have possessed Artemis’s little brothers, making his siblings even more annoying than usual. The warriors don’t seem to realize that the battle they were fighting against Artemis when they died is long over. Artemis has until sunrise to get the spirits to vacate his brothers and go back into the earth where they belong. Young adult.
Now…what do you want to read? Leave a comment and tell me, and I’ll draw one name to win his or her choice. International, as always. And if the book is in a series you haven’t started, you can always pick the first one in the series instead. If there’s a new release in another genre this week you’d like to read, leave that in your comment. If I’ve missed a speculative fiction release, leave it in the comments and I’ll add it in—it’s eligible for giveaway.
As always, four entries possible: +1 for comment to tell me what book (any book) you want, +1 for blog follow, +1 for Twitter follow @Suzanne_Johnson, and +1 for a Tweet or RT about the contest. This contest is international. Contests end at midnight CDT U.S. on Saturday, and winners are announced on Sunday’s blog. It’s the responsibility of the winner to contact me with their mailing info. Books unclaimed after a month will go into a general giveaway pile.