First, housekeeping….Check out my friend Pamela Mason’s “Part Deux” in our Louisiana Holiday Memories over at the Romance Magicians blog
today. You can comment for another chance to win a copy of “Christmas in Dogtown” (and scroll down if you haven’t already, on that same page, to read my post from Friday and another chance to win). Today’s entry made me soooo homesick!
Sorry for going todash this weekend (alert: Stephen King reference); I’ll announce two weeks’ worth of giveaway winners this next weekend. I had the fun of attending the Southern Magic RWA chapter’s annual Readers Luncheon on Saturday. Photos coming!
Now, take a deep breath, because there are some major TBR-additions this week. As always, leave a comment telling me the book you’d most like to win, and maybe random.org will make your wishes come true. Your choice of print or digital unless otherwise stated. International? Of course! As long as Book Depository delivers to your country, please enter. If you’d prefer the first book in a series listed here, that’s okay, too.
Twelve new stories of Christmas in very unusual circumstances, ranging from vampires to robots, from the hills of Appalachia to a high orbit space station, all celebrating the holiday in their own, off-beat ways. Features tales by Larry Correia, Sarah A. Hoyt, Wen Spencer, Joe Haldeman, Frederik Pohl, Tony Daniel, Connie Willis and many more.
It’s been five long years since the city learned to fear. The war between the thief guilds and the powerful allegiance known as the Trifect has slowly dwindled. Now only the mysterious Haern is left to wage his private battle against the guilds in the guise of the Watcher, a vicious killer who knows no limits. But when the son of Alyssa Gemcroft, one of the three leaders of the Trifect, is believed murdered, the slaughter begins anew. Mercenaries flood the streets with one goal in mind: find and kill the Watcher. Peace or destruction; every war must have its end. Atale of retribution and darkness, and an underworld reaching for ultimate power.
Born with the ability to communicate with the dead, few things take Mana by surprise. When a canis lopes into her life, announcing himself as the long-dead father of a childhood friend, she’s shocked. He has a dire message that she alone can deliver. Mana must face Vaughn, the male who inspired one too many girlish fantasies, and impart the spirit’s message so the soul can be laid to rest. The woman he remembers as an awkward girl refuses to leave his side until he’s heard her out. When they are both captured, they learn of an even greater threat. The plague devastating the southlands has come to his clan home. His best chance to keep his people alive is the female who walks among the dead.
Trouble is brewing. As the owner of Little Shop of Potions, a magic potion shop specializing in love potions, Carly Bell Hartwell finds her product more in demand than ever. A local soothsayer has predicted that a couple in town will soon divorce, and now it seems every married person in Hitching Post, Alabama, wants a little extra matrimonial magic to make sure they stay hitched. When Carly finds a dead man in her shop, clutching one of her potion bottles, she goes from most popular potion person to public enemy number one. The murder investigation becomes a witch hunt. Carly is going to need to brew up some serious sleuthing skills to clear her name and find the real killer, before the whole town becomes convinced her potions really are to die for.
The day Eden met Ryan changed her world forever. Actually, not just her world. Ryan has time traveled from the future to save theworld. In a few weeks, Eden’s best friend Connor will discover a new planet, one where human life is possible. The discovery will make him famous. It will also ruin the world as we know it. When Ryan asks Eden for help, she must choose between saving the world and saving her best friend’s greatest achievement. And a crush on Ryan complicates things more than she could have imagined. Because Connor is due to make the discovery after the girl he loves breaks his heart. That girl is Eden.
William Bellman, as a boy of 11, killed a shiny black rook with a catapult, and grew up to be someone, his neighbors think, “could go to the good or the bad.” William’s life at first seems blessed. He has a happy marriage to a beautiful woman, becomes father to a brood of bright children, and thrives in business, but one by one, people around him die. At each funeral, he is startled to see a strange man in black, smiling at him. At first, the dead are distant relatives, but eventually his own children die, and then his wife, leaving behind only one child, his favorite, Dora. William gets drunk and stumbles to his wife’s fresh grave, and who should be there waiting, but the smiling stranger in black. The stranger has a proposition for William, a mysterious business called “Bellman & Black”.
Cassie Klyne, nineteen years old, lives in the United States in the year 2015, but it’s not our United States, and it’s not our 2015. Cassie’s world has been at peace since the Great Armistice of 1918. Cassie knows the world isn’t what it seems. Her parents were part of a group who gradually discovered the awful truth: that for decades, back to the dawn of radio communications, human progress has been interfered with, made more peaceful and benign, by an extraterrestrial entity. Cassie’s parents were killed for this knowledge. Cassie and her younger brother Thomas now live with her aunt Nerissa. For eight years they have attempted to lead unexceptional lives in order to escape detection. The tactic has worked. Until now. Because the killers are back. And they’re not human.
June and Day have sacrificed so much for the people of the Republic, and each other, and now their country is on the brink of a new existence. June is back in the good graces of the Republic, working within the government’s elite circles as Princeps Elect while Day has been assigned a high level military position. But neither could have predicted the circumstances that will reunite them once again. Just when a peace treaty is imminent, a plague outbreak causes panic in the Colonies, and war threatens the Republic’s border cities. This new strain of plague is deadlier than ever, and June is the only one who knows the key to her country’s defense. But saving the lives of thousands will mean asking the one she loves to give up everything he has.
Between brewing magically spiced treats at Honeybee Bakery and volunteering with a local conservation group, Katie Lightfoot barely has time to see her firefighter boyfriend, Declan McCarthy, much less delve further into her destiny as a witch. But avoiding her fate won’t be as easy as whipping up a new recipe, especially when Katie finds herself once again mixed up in murder. When a fellow volunteer for the conservation group is found dead, Katie’s mystical senses tell her that there’s more to the death than meets the eye. Her suspicions are confirmed when members of her coven are targeted next. Katie will have to embrace her powers quickly…or she may find herself chewed up and spit out by some serious black magic.
Kai and Ginny grew up together, best friends since they could toddle around their building’s rooftop rose garden. Now they’re seventeen, and their relationship has developed into something sweeter, complete with stolen kisses and plans to someday run away together. But one night, Kai disappears with a mysterious stranger named Mora, a beautiful girl with a dark past and a heart of ice. Refusing to be cast aside, Ginny goes after them and is thrust into a world she never imagined, one filled with monsters and thieves and the idea that love is not enough. If Ginny and Kai survive the journey, will she still be the girl he loved, and moreover, will she still be the girl who loved him?
On the colony planet of Terra Nova, soldier turned political leader Carrera has achieved his revenge, destroying those who killed his wife and children in a terrorist strike, and helping to establish a free country. War with the Tauran Union is inevitable. Carrera has been preparing his new country for this all-out conflict for years, intending to drive out the last vestige of foreign imperialism in Balboa, the Tauran Union Security Force. Then his own government calls a halt even as the commander of the United Earth Peace Fleet, High Admiral Marguerite Wallenstein, injects a dose of realism and spine into the Tauran Union. Carrera knows that sooner or later, he must fight, only now the task will be more difficult and more bloody. Carerra knows he will do whatever it takes to win.
Years ago, with the healing abilities afforded by her blend of Aztec and extraterrestrial blood, Liz was free to do as she wished. Now she is trapped in a blood feud, forced to heal one of her clan’s most dangerous rivals so they can exploit his gift of prophecy. Zeke Neekoma never expected to hunger for a woman he’s supposed to hate, but now that he’s tasted her, he has no intention of denying himself. Brought to Zeke’s stronghold to heal his brother, Jacob, Liz surrenders her body’s most traitorous needs to the unrestrained desires of two powerful men. And the brothers fill the lonely void she has too long endured. But her clan doesn’t intend to let her go without a fight, and the ecstasy that binds Liz to her lovers could be the thing that breaks them.
Jack and his friends are in a race to save the remaining inhabitants of a postapocalyptic London from a nuclear bomb. Two years after London is struck by a terrorist attack, it is cut off from the rest of the world, protected by a force of soldiers (known as Choppers) while the rest of Britain believe that their ex-capital is a toxic wasteland. The remaining survivors in London are changing; developing fantastic powers; evolving. Jack’s powers are growing. His friend Lucy-Anne’s powers are developing too. Nomad, the mysterious woman who started it all, is close by. The Choppers have initiated their final safeguard, a nuclear bomb that will wipe out London. Jack and his friends must spread the news of the bomb. Jack must face his father, the deadly Reaper, in their final showdown.
Meet Meda. She eats people. Well, technically, she eats their soul. But she promises to only go for people who deserve it. Her mother was killed and it’s not like there are any other “soul-eaters” around to show her how to be different. Until the three men in suits show up. They’re like her. Meda might finally have a chance to figure out what she is. They kind of want to kill her. Meda is rescued by crusaders, members of an elite group dedicated to wiping out Meda’s kind. Playing capture the flag with her mortal enemies, babysitting a teenage boy with a hero complex, and trying to keep one step ahead of a too-clever girl are bad enough. When Meda uncovers a shocking secret about her mother, her past, and her destiny, she may finally give into it.
Sophronia’s first year at Mademoiselle Geraldine’s Finishing Academy for Young Ladies of Quality has certainly been rousing. Finishing school is training her to be a spy (won’t Mumsy be surprised?). Sophronia got mixed up in an intrigue over a stolen device and had a cheese pie thrown at her in a most horrid display of poor manners. Now, as she sneaks around the dirigible school, eavesdropping on the teachers’ quarters and making clandestine climbs to the ship’s boiler room, she learns that there may be more to a school trip to London than is apparent at first. A conspiracy is afoot, one with dire implications for both supernaturals and humans. Sophronia must rely on her training to discover who is behind the dangerous plot, and survive the London Season with a full dance card.
When Risa loses the second key to hell, she angers several powerful people, and she’s starting to feel the pressure from all sides. She gets a visit from her father, who gives her an ultimatum: Get back the key or he will kill her friends. Risa also finds herself under the scrutiny of the vampire council, some of whom consider her a monster who should be destroyed. But they offer her a bloody bargain: Take on the lethal head of the council, Madeline Hunter, and others will support her. As the search for the keys to hell heats up, Risa realizes that she has no choice. For the sake of the people she loves, she must find the keys, and get rid of Hunter, before the second gate is opened and brings the world closer to all hell breaking loose.
While Morganville, Texas, is often a troubled town, Claire Danvers and her friends are looking forward to coming home. The Morganville they return to isn’t the one they know. Something drastic has happened in Morganville while Claire and her friends were away. The town looks cleaner and happier, but when their incoming group is arrested and separated, vampires from humans, they realize that the changes aren’t for the better. An organization called the Daylight Foundation has offered the population of Morganville something they’ve never had: hope of a vampire-free future. The truth is far more sinister and deadly. Claire, Shane and Eve need to find a way to break their friends out of Daylighter custody, before the vampires of Morganville meet their untimely end.
Three years after solving the hundred-year-old murder case that brought them together, Greg Woodhall and Adrian Broussard have settled into life together in Chapel Hill. Adrian’s doctorate research and Greg’s two jobs keep them busy. Greg is offered the chance to help Bay City Paranormal scope out the historic PlayMakers Theater’s rumored spirits. As the protoplasmic trail shifts to DogOpolis, where Greg works part time, he senses something in the air besides the aroma of gourmet hot dogs. There’s an entity that the team can’t quite get a handle on. When the team finally uncovers the truth, no one is prepared for the danger, or what they’ll have to do to stop the thing plaguing DogO before it stops them. Permanently.
Darkness lies closer than you think. Newly divorced, estranged from grown sons who do not answer her calls, Liana Clymer leaves everything for a fuchsia cottage in the Florida swamps. With only a dog for companion, she heads to meet the only neighbors in sight, the blue house across the street. But minutes after teen Justin answers the door and wins her over with his shy kindness, his face appears on TV, a child kidnapped two years ago. Worse, Justin’s abductor has no intention of letting Liana go. Liana will fight tooth and nail to survive and save Justin. But can she thwart a wily, depraved psychopath for whom abuse is a way of life, and killing is routine?
Eamon Evernight has always lived in his older brother’s shadow. While his brother is fair of hair and lithe in body, Eamon sparks fear with his fiery locks and massive frame, and rumors of a mysterious power. When his brother has the good fortune to be betrothed to a beautiful stranger, it’s Eamon’s help, and quick wit and romantic heart, that he needs. Eamon agrees to write the noble lady, a generous offer that will forever leave him a changed man. Lady Luella Jane Moran has no interest in an arranged marriage and tries valiantly to dissuade her betrothed from afar. The words her husband-to-be writes her leave her aching for his touch. Will Lu give in to the desire the missives have kindled within her? Or will desire turn cold when she discovers their true author? (ebook only)
The violent attack left Synjon destroyed and his lover dead, at the will of the evil vampire Cruen. Syn’s passionate savior was Petra. When she became pregnant with his child, it should have been a blessing, until Syn vanished after discovering the truth: Petra was the daughter of the man he despised above all others. The daughter of Cruen. When Petra’s health begins to decline, she contacts Syn to help save their baby. He cannot turn his back on his own innocent child. As his feelings for Petra are rekindled, Syn becomes increasingly torn. Although everyone assumes that Cruen is dead, Syn is not convinced, and is still hell-bent on finding and destroying him once and for all. But will his thirst for vengeance keep him from seeing what is really worth living for before it is too late?
Devi Morris isn’t your average mercenary. She has plans. Big ones. And a ton of ambition. It’s a combination that’s going to get her killed one day – but not just yet. That is, until she just gets a job on a tiny trade ship with a nasty reputation for surprises. The Glorious Fool isn’t misnamed: it likes to get into trouble, so much so that one year of security work under its captain is equal to five years everywhere else. With odds like that, Devi knows she’s found the perfect way to get the jump on the next part of her Plan. But the Fool doesn’t give up its secrets without a fight, and one year on this ship might be more than even Devi can handle.
After losing her husband to a French agent, Charlotte Moncrieffe wants to make her mark in international espionage. What could be better for recovering long-lost documents from the Palais Garnier than her stealth dirigible, Gossamer Wing? Her spymaster father has one condition: He won’t send her to Paris without an ironclad cover. Dexter Hardison prefers inventing to politics, but his title as Makesmith Baron and his formidable skills make him an ideal husband-imposter. The undercover arrangement would help him in his own field of discovery. From Charlotte and Dexter’s marriage of convenience comes a passion that complicates a dangerous mission. For Charlotte, the thought of losing Dexter also opens her heart to a thrilling new future of love and adventure.
Instead of the deadly force it once was, magic is now a useless novelty. Not for Shame Flynn and Terric Conley, “breakers” who have the gift for reverting magic back to its full-throttle power. In the magic-dense city of Portland, Oregon, keeping a low profile means keeping their gifts quiet. Shame and Terric have had enough of politics, petty magic, and, frankly, each other. When the government discovers the breakers’ secret, and its potential as a weapon, Shame and Terric suddenly become wanted men, the only ones who can stop the deadly gift from landing in the wrong hands. If only a pair of those wrong hands didn’t belong to a drop-dead-gorgeous assassin Shame is falling for as if it were the end of the world. And if he gets too close to her, it very well could be.
It is 1315. And darkness is falling. Many generations ago the Wall was first built to hold back the sea. Northland has become a thriving civilization centered on the ancient home of the first builders, Etxelur. The whole of Europe, spanned by the Northlanders’ steam caravan lines, has been changed in ways that could never have been predicted. The weather is changing, growing colder, and in the wake of the long winters come famine, destruction and terror. It seems that even Northland may not be able to endure. There is one man who believes he can calculate why the world is cooling, and even salvage some scraps of Etxelur. As he embarks on his grand quest across the world, only one thing is certain. The Ice is coming. (U.S. Release)
The people of Russalka turn upon one another in a ruthless and unwavering civil war even while their world sickens and the ocean is stained red with their blood. As the young civilization weakens, the war drums beat louder and louder. Katya Kuriakova knows it cannot last. Both sides are exhausted, it can only be a matter of days or weeks before they finally call a truce and negotiate. The days and weeks pass, the death toll mounts, and still the enemy will not talk. A figure from the tainted past returns to make her an offer she cannot lightly refuse: a plan to stop the war. To do it she will have to turn her back on everything she has believed in, everything she has fought for, to make sacrifices greater than laying down her own life. To save Russalka, she must become its greatest enemy.
As a harpy, Sentinel Aryal is accustomed to dealing with hate, but Sentinel Quentin Caeravorn manages to inspire in her a burning ire unlike anything she’s known. Aryal believes the new Sentinel to be a criminal, and vows to take him out as soon as the opportunity arises. The harpy’s incessant wrath has pushed Quentin to the limit, and forces him to make a deadly vow of his own. Dragos, Lord of the Wyr, sends them on a reconnaissance mission to the Elven land of Numenlaur. Aryal and Quentin’s mutual antagonism escalates. Each fight draws forth more passion, culminating in an explosively sexual confrontation. But when their quest reveals real danger, Aryal and Quentin must resolve their differences in ways beyond the physical, before the entire Wyr is threatened.
It has been several months since Tate Eresby developed her new magical ability to bring whatever she creates to life, but she is still learning to control her power. She and Hexe can barely make ends meet, but they are happy. Until Golgotham’s criminal overlord Boss Marz is released from prison, bent on revenge against the couple responsible for putting him there. Hexe’s right hand is destroyed, leaving him unable to conjure his benign magic. Attempts to repair the hand only succeed in plunging Hexe into a darkness that can’t be lifted, even by news that Tate is carrying his child. With her pregnancy seeming to progress at an astonishing rate, Tate realizes that carrying a possible heir to the Kymeran throne will attract danger from all corners, even beyond the grave.
In Aygrima, magic is a Gift possessed from birth by a very small percentage of the population, with the Autarch the most powerful magic worker of all. Only Lady of Pain and Fire had been able to challenge his rule. At the age of fifteen, citizens must don the spell-infused Masks whenever they are in public. The Masks are magically crafted to reveal any treasonous thoughts or actions. Mara Holdfast, daughter of the Autarch’s Master Maskmaker, is approaching her fifteenth birthday and her Masking ceremony. On the day of her Masking something goes horribly wrong. Mara is torn away from her parents, imprisoned, and consigned to a wagon bound for the mines. Her Mask has labeled her a traitor. Not even her Gift can show Mara the future that awaits her.
Part travel log/journal and part atlas, Midkemia: The Chronicles of Pug brings the fictional world of Midkemia to vivid, illustrative life, and gives readers a completely new look at the creative genius of Raymond E. Feist. Written in first-person, a first for veteran bestseller Raymond Feist, the book details the life and times of Pug of Stardock, the hero of Feist’s The Chaoswar Trilogy. Beautiful hand-drawn maps illustrate the changes in Midkemia’s geography as war ravages the land and physically alters the landscape; dedicated readers and fans can literally trace the changes made by each battle. Complete with thirty pieces of specially commissioned artwork, this book is a totally immersive look into the world of Midkemia as never experienced before.
Tom Harding only wants the truth. As a reporter for his high school newspaper, Tom Harding was tracking the best story of his life, when, suddenly, his life turned very, very weird. He woke up one morning to find his house empty, his street empty, his whole town empty, empty except for an eerie, creeping fog, and whatever creatures were slowly moving toward him through the fog. Now Tom’s world has become something out of a horror movie. Tom is a good reporter, he knows how to look for answers. With the fog closing in and the hungry creatures of the fog surrounding him, he has only a few hours to find out how he lost the world he knew. In this bizarre universe nothing is what it seems and everything, including Tom’s life, hangs in the balance.
Six weeks after her arrival on the Surface, Evelyn Winters is no closer to unlocking the memories lost in her subconscious than she was when she first came. Evie has only Gavin Hunter to remind her of who she once was. Evie doesn’t fit in on the Surface. She can’t help but yearn for that place she doesn’t remember: the city hidden in the depths of the ocean. Elysium. She can’t tell Gavin what she’s feeling. He’s the one who helped her escape Elysium in the first place. Evie’s memories begin to collide with reality. People and images from her past appear in the most unlikely places. Evie and Gavin can’t wait around for her memories to return. They’ll have to journey across the Outlands of the Surface to find help, and their search may just lead them back to the place it all started.
Josetta is a princess of one of the Five Families. She is far from the throne, so she is free to spend her days working in the poorest sections of the city. Rafe Adova lives the life of a career gambler in those slums. He has no ambition until the night he decides to help a girl named Corene. She, too, is a princess, sister to Josetta, who finds her with Rafe. Josetta has never encountered anyone like him, someone seemingly devoid of elemental blessings. He is drawn to her, though he thinks they are unlikely to ever meet again, but their connection grows strong when she nurses him back to health after he is assaulted by foreign mercenaries. When they learn the reason he’s being hunted, they know that the truth about his history could endanger not only their love but also their very lives.
Shelly Connors’s worlds, on land and in the sea, are turned upside down when an evening swim turns into a nightmare. On a sweltering night deep in the bayou, the mystical mermaid witnesses a horrifying act. With a monstrous killer now hot on her trail, her life and the lives of her kin are in jeopardy. Terrified of becoming the next victim, Shelly has no choice but to turn to Sheriff Tillman Angier. Tillman has had his intense gray eyes on the sultry honey-haired beauty for a while. The feelings are mutual, and impossible to ignore. But he’s determined to solve the murders, and he knows Shelly’s hiding something. Can she trust him with her deepest secret?
Leader of the Faction of Humanity. It was a ridiculous title, but the Arena said that was what Captain Ariane Austin was since she’d led the crew of the Holy Grail in their discovery of the impossible, physics-violating place and their eventual return, and when the nigh-omnipotent Arena said something, it meant it. Ariane must discover what it means to be the Leader of Humanity, both for herself and for humanity, before her enemies, at home or in the Arena, depose her, kill her, or worse. It will take her luck, Marc DuQuesne’s will, Simon Sandrisson’s genius, and the skill of a living legend. Humanity’s fate in the galaxy will hinge on the choice of an uncertain ally who has nothing to gain, and everything to lose, by aiding those neophyte upstarts, the humans.
Priscilla “Hutch” Hutchins has realized her lifelong dream: She’s completed a nerve-bending qualification flight for a pilot’s license. Faster-than-light travel has only recently become a reality, and the World Space Authority is still learning how to manage long-range missions safely. Efforts to prepare two planets for colonization are killing off native life forms. Priscilla thinks her career may be over before it has begun. Her ambition won’t be denied, and soon she is on the bridge of an interstellar ship, working for the corporation that is responsible for the terraforming. Her working conditions include a mission to a world that harbors a life-form unlike anything humanity has seen. She will be part of a struggle that will test her capabilities and her character.
The Sword-Edged Blonde When a childhood friend, now a king, asks Eddie’s help in clearing his queen of a murder charge, Eddie’s long-buried past refuses to stay hidden. Burn Me Deadly Someone will go to any lengths, including torture and murder, to locate the last remaining dragon eggs. But dragons aren’t real, are they? Dark Jenny A poisoned apple sets off political turmoil that threatens to destroy an entire Camelot-like kingdom, and take Eddie with it. Wake of the Bloody Angel Eddie searches for the vanished pirate Black Edward Tew and his legendary treasure, but even the help of a tough former pirate queen may not be enough to save him from what he finds. Also includes a sample of the fifth Eddie LaCrosse novel, He Drank, and Saw the Spider. (ebook only)
Dave Harris is a scientist living aboard the Alley, a military space station where he carries out hyperfield experiments. The technology to harvest energy from hyperspace saved humanity from extinction thirty years ago, and Dave’s research is at the cutting edge of hyperfield technology. An accident engulfs the Alley in a whirlwind of chaos and mysterious forces, leading Dave to a disturbing discovery: his work has uncovered the energy behind psychic powers. Crew members are going insane at a frightening pace and Dave’s mind becomes clouded by horrifying visions. Dave realizes that it wasn’t a singular event and if he can’t fight the impending madness, there is one certainty: the Alley will be destroyed, along with everyone in it.
A short story collection fleshing out the world of the Twilight Reign series. The history of the Land may remember the slaughter at Moorview or the horror of Scree’s fall, but there were other casualties of the secret war against Azaer, more tales surrounding those bloody years that went unrecorded. In the shadow of memorials to the glorious dead, these ghosts lie quiet and forgotten by all but a few. A companion collection to the Twilight Reign quintet, these eleven stories shine a rather different light on the Land. Look past the armies and politics of the Seven Tribes and you will find smaller moments that shaped the course of history in their own way. But even forgotten secrets can kill. Even shadows can have claws. (U.S. Release)
For two years, Oriana Paredes has been a spy among the social elite of the Golden City, reporting back to her people, the sereia, sea folk banned from the city’s shores. When her employer and only confidante decides to elope, Oriana agrees to accompany her to Paris. Before they can depart, the two women are abducted and left to drown. Oriana’s heritage allows her to survive while she is forced to watch her friend die. Oriana crosses paths with Duilio Ferreira, a police consultant who has been investigating the disappearance of a string of servants from the city’s wealthiest homes. Duilio also has a secret: He is a seer and his gifts have led him to Oriana. Oriana and Duilio must expose a twisted plot of magic so dark that it could cause the very fabric of history to come undone.
Abisina is ready to assume the role of Keeper that has been her destiny, leading the future of the Watersmeet community. The survival of the land depends on the north and south, the centaurs, dwarves, fairies, humans, and fauns, joining together to confront a gathering evil. The rift that opened in the Mountains Eternal has continued to spew forth terrible creatures: überwolves, leviathan-birds, minotaurs. Abisina knows the most challenging creature of all has arrived, though what shape it will take is still a mystery. She sets out to bring the folk together to confront this unknown evil. Abisina doubts if she has the strength to be the leader that everyone needs. Can Abisina’s faith in the power of love, acceptance, and unity she’s learned from her friends and family survive this final test?
This holiday season, armed with love and passion, can the Keepers stop the reign of Darkness? Christmas is coming to Salem, but so is an evil force that threatens all mankind. In this memorable collection led by New York Times bestselling author Heather Graham, four powerful Keepers must save their community as a strange, eternal night creeps over the town. Forced to choose between their time-honored responsibilities or the lovers their hearts desire, these four extraordinary women must risk their own happiness to save the holiday. But Christmas is a time for miracles, and as each Keeper’s greatest longing is met, the Season of Light returns. Don’t miss this magical holiday collection from Heather Graham, Deborah LeBlanc, Kathleen Pickering and Beth Ciotta.
In the battle against the vampiric Ticks, humanity was slowly but certainly headed for extinction. Twin sisters Lily and Mel had been “quarantined” with thousands of other young people being harvested for their blood, food for the Ticks. The twins are separated, and must continue the fight on their own. Making it to a resistance base camp in Utah, Lily learned to survive at all costs. When a Tick attack decimates the fighters, Lily and her pregnant friend, McKenna, decide to make the hard trek north to Canada, and safety. Mel is being taught how to survive by the very vampire that turned her. When a monstrous betrayal places Lily in mortal danger, Mel must set out to find her, save her, and begin to unravel the empire of destruction that the Ticks have built.
Esther Diamond’s year gets off to a rocky start when NYPD’s Detective Connor Lopez shuts down her current place of employment and gets her arrested. Esther takes a small role in a grad student’s film project in Chinatown. Her friend, semi-retired hit man Lucky Battistuzzi, who escaped Lopez’s sweep at the Little Italy restaurant where Esther works between acting jobs, is hiding out. In Chinatown, beautifully handcrafted fortune cookies are inflicting deadly mystical curses on the hapless victims who receive them. Esther learns that Detective Lopez is one of the recipients. Esther and Lucky summon the help of their friend Max, a semi-immortal mage and semi-solvent bookseller, to help them save Chinatown and Lopez from a mystical murderer of maniacal menace.
After a senseless tragedy destroys his life, Will is obsessed with punishing those responsible, even if it means leaving the Ranger Corps. His worried friends must find a way to stop him taking such a dark path. It is Halt who suggests the solution: Will must take an apprentice. The candidate Halt has in mind surprises everyone, and it’s a request Will cannot refuse. Training a rebellious, unwilling apprentice is hard enough. But when a routine mission uncovers a shocking web of crime, Will must decide where his priorities lie: finishing his quest for revenge, or saving innocent lives? (U.S. Release)
Alison Kerby’s guesthouse is already crowded with spirits. The last thing she needs is a new batch of haunts settling in. As Alison’s reputation as “the ghost lady” grows, so does her business. Tourists may be flocking to her guesthouse for a chance to glimpse her resident spirits, but her special abilities are bringing unwanted private investigation cases to her door. She has no choice but to take a case when the local homeless man is found murdered under mysterious circumstances, just hours after asking for help in exorcising a specter. Alison’s other PI case soon turns fatal, as the mistress she was spying on for a jealous wife turns up dead as well. With a mountain of clues, motives and suspects, both living and dead, Alison will have to think fast before someone else checks out for good.
After barely escaping the Mission alive, Gene and Sissy face an impossible task: staying alive long enough to stop an entire world bent on their destruction. Bound on a train heading into the unknown with the surviving Mission girls, Gene, Sissy, David, and Epap must stick together and use everything they have to protect each other and their only hope: the cure that will turn the blood-thirsty creatures around them into humans again. Now that they know how to reverse the virus, Gene and Sissy have one final chance to save those they love and create a better life for themselves. But as they struggle to get there, Gene’s mission sets him on a crash course with Ashley June, his first love, and his deadliest enemy.
Celia Graves’s newest client is one of the last surviving members of a magical family that is trapped in a generations-old feud. She’s supposed to die at the next full moon unless Celia can broker peace between the clans or break the curse. Celia’s personal life is looking up. Her vampire abilities seem to be under control, her Siren abilities have gotten more reliable, and even though her office was blown up, her services are more in demand than ever. Her friends all seem to be finding love and her grandmother has, finally, agreed to go to family therapy. The only trouble spot is Celia’s love life. She had two boyfriends. Now, she barely has oneshe isn’t sure she wants. Bruno DeLuca is a powerful mage and Celia needs his help, especially after she’s attacked and her client is kidnapped.
Earth’s space forces, spearheaded by the United States, have been at war with the forces of the Palatine Empire, a neo-Roman culture that broke away from Earth’s control long ago. The pride of the U.S. space fleet is the battle-class starship, the U.S.S. Merrimack, commanded by Captain John Farragut. When the alien life-form known as the Hive, a biological force whose only imperative is to seek and devour, begins wreaking destruction across the galaxy, the Romans are forced to turn to Earth for help. Can these two longtime enemies keep from fighting each other long enough to destroy the Hive and save mankind? Tour of the Merrimack: Volume Two contains the third and fourth books, The Sagittarius Command and Strength and Honor, of the Tour of the Merrimack series.
Novice Terran trader Jethri Gobelyn, adopted by a Liaden clan after an ill-directed bow of honor insulted the scion of a major Liaden house, is alive and whole to tell the tale. Even as Jethri’s initiation into the mysteries and joys of Liaden Festival bring him to manhood he’s forced to face Necessity and the facts of life: his adoption has also invigorated a net of unfinished Balance more complex and potentially deadly than a simple Terran blood feud. He must embrace his Terran birthright as well as his Liaden connections while leaving behind the safety of the great Liaden trade ship Elthoria to defend his honor. Jethri’s convinced he’s already at wit’s end, when several familiar faces threaten all that he knows of himself, and all that he wishes to do.
An enormous anthology of short stories featuring recent stories from some of science fiction’s greatest up-and-coming authors. Twenty-First Century Science Fiction presents fans’ first opportunities to see what their considerable talents come up with together, and also to get a unique perspective on what’s coming next in the science fiction field. The anthology includes authors ranging from bestselling and established favorites to incandescent new talents including Paolo Bacigalupi, Cory Doctorow, Catherynne M. Valente, John Scalzi, Jo Walton, Charles Stross, Elizabeth Bear, and Peter Watts, and the stories selected include winners and nominees of all of the science fiction field’s major awards.
You can be Improved. In a near-future world in which technology can transport you anywhere instantly, can a coded note enable you to change your body, to become taller, stronger, more beautiful? Clair is pretty sure the offer is too good to be true. But her best friend, Libby, is determined to give it a try, longing for a new, improved version of herself. What starts as Libby’s dream turns into Clair’s nightmare when Libby falls foul of a deadly trap. With the help of Jesse, the school freak, and a mysterious, but powerful, stranger called Q, Clair’s attempt to protect Libby leads her to an unimagined world of conspiracies and cover-ups. Soon her own life is at risk, and Clair is chased across the world in a desperate race against time.
Featuring never-before-seen information about the warrior cats, Warriors: The Ultimate Guide is a necessary addition to every Warriors collection and is perfect for both longtime fans and those just getting to know the world. This full-color book includes: All of the content from Warriors: Cats of the Clans. Brand-new art and detailed descriptions for forty more cats An in-depth look at each of the five warrior Clans. Bonus: For the first printing only, receive a double-sided jacket that folds out into a full-color collector’s poster.
When Nick and Kris, the half-fae sons of human mothers, aren’t using Santa’s sleigh in the off-season to make deliveries, they’re setting off sensual fireworks in the bedroom. They dream of a feminine third to complete their lives. There’s only one woman they can picture filling that role. Lilly thought earning extra money stripping was a good plan, until she’s left battered, bruised, and stuffed in a back-alley trash can. He rescuers turn out to be the dark, brooding dom and the golden-haired sub whose faces are still the stuff of her fantasies. She questions whether anyone can break into Nick and Kris’s powerful bond. There’s someone who’s been waiting for this moment all Lilly’s life. An evil psychopath who holds the secrets of her past.
The bombing that almost killed Owen witch Molly Ryan has worsened the tensions between the humans and the Others. While the Others desperately campaign to prevent the passage of a law that would strip their people of all rights, the human separatists develop an agenda far worse than anyone imagined. Security head Helena Jaansen finds herself relying more and more heavily on her personal guard, Faine Leviathan. As Helena and Faine’s explosive passion grows, a deadly separatist plot is discovered, one which could bring ultimate destruction for the Others, and war breaks out between the two opposing factions. With the Others forced into hiding, Helena must overcome her fear of repeating past failures to save her people, and her heart, before it’s too late.
This is a double novella “flip book” pairing a modern corporate suspense story about the cover-up of a CEO’s illicit affair, with a 1970s-era science fiction thriller about an oil company’s environmental disaster. It is an exploration of the paranoia inherent in business and the thin line between competition and conspiracy.
The One-Eyed Jack and the Suicide King: personifications of the city of Las Vegas, its history, mystery, mystical power, and heart. When the Suicide King vanishes, possibly killed, in the middle of a magic-rights turf war started by the avatars of Los Angeles, a notorious fictional assassin, and the mutilated ghost of Benjamin “Bugsy” Siegel, his partner, the One-Eyed Jack, must seek the aid of a bizarre band of legendary and undead allies: the ghosts of Doc Holliday and John Henry the steel-driving man; the echoes of several imaginary super spies, decades displaced in time; and a vampire named Tribute, who bears a striking resemblance to a certain long-lost icon of popular music.
Space Opera spans a vast range of epic interstellar adventure stories told against a limitless cosmos filled with exotic aliens, heroic characters, and incredible settings. A truly stellar compilation of tales from one of the defining streams of science fiction, old and new, written by a supernova of genre talent. Contributing authors include: Kage Baker, Elizabeth Bear, Jay Lake, Robert Reed and Alastair Reynolds.
“The Oregon Trail Diary of Willa Porter” is a collection of diary entries from Willa Porter’s journey west with her family, into territory which gets stranger and stranger. (ebook only)
The small print: This contest is international to any place Book Depository ships. Contests end at midnight CDT U.S. on Saturday, and winners will be announced on Sunday’s blog. It’s the responsibility of the winner to contact me with their mailing info.
Now….go forth and tell me what you want to read!