Now that we here in the U.S. have survived the annual Thanksgiving feast, it’s time to wrap up the month of November and step into the first few days of December with new releases. As you might imagine, December won’t be quite as busy as the past few months. However, there are still some great books coming out.
What do you want to read 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.
Beneath an Oil-Dark Sea: The Best of Caitlin R. Kiernan, Volume 2, by Caitlin R. Kiernan, (November 30, Subterranean)
Collecting the finest of Kiernan’s stories from 2004 to 2012, selected by the author herself. The book includes twenty-five short stories and one poem, plus the short novel ”Black Helicopters”, over two hundred thousand words of fiction, including the World Fantasy Award-winning ”The Prayer of Ninety Cats.” In this volume you will find the full range of her work amply displayed. Her output to date has already placed her at the head of her field; she has nothing more to prove. Any subsequent work can only augment her achievement.” The collection includes the first complete bibliography of Kiernan’s writing (1985-2015). (collection)
Fender Lizards, by Joe R. Lansdale, (November 30, Subterranean)
The tale of the life and love and work of one Dot Sherman, who delivers on her promise that her story is “the real thing from beginning to end.” Dot waitresses on roller skates at the Dairy Bob, doesn’t care for smoking at least partly on account of her dad having never returned from a cigarette run, and carries on the family tradition of philosophizing. Life hasn’t done her any favors in her seventeen years so far. But if there was ever a heroine built for turning things upside down and seeing what shakes out, it’s Dot. Determined to find out who she is and why she’s the way she is, an opportunity presents itself when her heretofore-unknown uncle suddenly moves his camper into the front yard. Here is an overlooked world and a cast of real folks that prove unforgettable.
A Daughter of No Nation (Hidden Sea Tales #2), by A.M. Dellamonica, (December 1, Tor)
Sophie Hansa wanted to meet her birth parents. She and her stepbrother find themselves transported to a world made up of giant archipelagos and people who can magically alter themselves. It looked like Sophie had seen the last of the Fleet, until she finds the captain of her late aunt’s ship, Parrish Garland, waiting for her at her parents’ home. Sophie finds out that her birth mother has been imprisoned by her birth father for hiding their daughter. Sophie must return to Stormwrack to talk her father into releasing her mother. She must navigate the troubled social waters of her father’s home nation and finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy that could lead to civil war in the Fleet. Sophie, Bran, and Parrish must unravel a decades-old mystery to free Sophie’s mom and preserve the peace ensured by the nations united in the Fleet.
Alien in Chief (Katherine “Kitty” Katt #12), by Gini Koch, (December 1, DAW)
As Kitty can tell you, it’s not easy being the wife of the vice president, especially not when he’s an alien from the Alpha Centauri system. Kitty & Company have been savoring a few months of quiet since they got back from Beta Eight. Their peace is shattered by the arrival of a mysterious female assassin, who might be Jeff’s missing niece, Stephanie. When the most dangerous prisoners in the most secure supermax prison escape with ease, things look bad. When the Mastermind releases a virus that kills people in a week, things go to Defcon Worse fast. It’s up to Kitty to save everyone important in the U.S. government before the virus spreads through the rest of the country, and then the world. This time, the Mastermind’s made it very personal. Either he’s going down, or Kitty is.
Ash and Silver (The Sanctuary Duet #2), by Carol Berg, (December 1, Roc)
Ever since the Order of the Equites Cineré stole his memory, his name, and his heart, thinking about the past makes Greenshank’s head ache. After two years of training, he is almost ready to embrace the mission of the Order, to use selfless magic to heal the troubles of Navronne. But on his first assignment alone, the past comes racing back, threatening to drown him in conspiracy, grief, and murder. He is Lucian de Remeni, a sorcerer whose magical bents for portraiture and history threaten the safety of the earth and the future of the war-riven kingdom of Navronne. He just can’t remember how or why. Fighting to unravel the mysteries of his power, Lucian must trace threads of corruption that reach from the Pureblood Registry into the Order itself, the truth hidden two centuries in the past and beyond the boundaries of the world.
Blood Kiss (Black Dagger Legacy #1), by J.R. Ward, (December 1, Signet)
Paradise, blooded daughter of the king’s First Advisor, is ready to break free from the life of an aristocratic female. Her strategy? Join the Black Dagger Brotherhood’s training center program and learn to fight for herself, think for herself, be herself. The schooling is difficult, the other recruits feel more like enemies than allies, and it’s very clear that the Brother in charge, Butch O’Neal, a.k.a. the Dhestroyer, is having serious problems in his own life. That’s before she falls in love with a fellow classmate. Craeg, a common civilian. As an act of violence threatens to tear apart the entire program, and the erotic pull between them grows irresistible, Paradise is tested in ways she never anticipated, and left wondering whether she’s strong enough to claim her own power, on the field, and off.
Blood Storm (The Books of Blood and Iron #2), by Steven Harper, (December 1, Roc)
Ages ago, those who had the ability to change their shape lost it, leading to endless bloody battles for supremacy between the races, until one reluctant hero stepped forth to restore peace to the world. Even though Danr the half troll ended centuries of fighting, he still is not living the quiet life he longs for. Rumors have arisen that certain people are once again wielding the power of the shape. If Danr could learn to use it, he could become fully human and spend his life with his beloved, Aisa. But he is not the only one who craves the gift of changing form. Slavers have taken Danr’s friends captive, demanding the power of the shape as ransom. To obtain it, Danr must cross paths with the Fates, Death, and a giant wyrm that lives at the bottom of the ocean, before other, more dangerous parties uncover the secrets of shape changing.
Challenging Saber (The Alliance #4), by S.E. Smith, (December 1, Montana Publishing)
Saber, a wounded Trivator, believes he is no longer a fit warrior, much less strong enough to claim a mate. He does everything in his power to push away the human female he has fallen in love with. Taylor Sampson may be human, but that doesn’t make her weak. She survived living on Earth for four years after the world went crazy. She has her eye on the one stubborn Trivator that captured her heart seven years before. Taylor has one last requirement in order to complete her schooling. Then, she plans to show Saber that he is the man she wants, but when the planet she is on erupts into a civil war, she is trapped behind enemy lines. When Saber discovers that Taylor has been left behind, the warrior inside him refuses to think of her as collateral damage in a battle for power. Journey to a lawless, alien world and discover what happens when the beast awakens inside a damaged Trivator warrior when the woman he loves is threatened. (ebook only)
Clockwork Samurai (The Gunpowder Chronicles #2), by Jeannie Lin, (December 1, InterMix)
Jin Soling can see that the Emperor is cracking, relying on Opium to drown his troubles. The Ch’ing Empire is failing, and war with the British is imminent, but the man to whom Soling was once engaged has a bold idea to save it. A leader within the Ministry of Engineering, Chang-wei suggests an alliance with Japan, whose scientists claim to have technical advancements that will turn the tide of the war. Japan has kept itself in isolation for the last two hundred years, cutting all diplomatic ties with the Ch’ing Empire. Chang-wei must enter the island nation in disguise to seek an alliance forbidden by the Japanese shogunate. Soling arranges her own passage on the airship to Japan. Once they land, they become targets of the shogunate’s armored assassins. Caught between two empires, in a land distrustful of foreigners, the deadly war machines are the least of their worries. (ebook only)
Come the Revolution (Sasha Naradnyo #2), by Frank Chadwick, (December 1, Baen)
Sasha Naradnyo had come a long way from the slums of Crack City on the planet Peezgtaan from Human gangster to head of security for Tweezaa e-Traak, the Varoki heiress to the largest fortune in the history of the Stellar Commonwealth. Then the largest nation on the Varoki home world collapsed into riots and civil war, a murderously anti-human Varoki fanatic made his bid for power, and the head of the Secret Police decided to take a personal interest in Sasha. Now Sasha must navigate the violence and anarchy of a growing revolution, come to grips with ghosts from his past who have suddenly turned up alive, make common cause with resistance fighters who want him dead, expose a conspiracy which will shake the Commonwealth to its foundations, and do it all without losing his soul.
Crucible: All-New Tales of Valdemar (Tales of Valdemar #9), edited by Mercedes Lackey, (December 1, DAW)
In 1987, Mercedes Lackey published her first novel, Arrows of the Queen. This modest book about a magical land called Valdemar would be the beginning of a fantasy masterwork series spanning decades and including more than two dozen titles. Now the voices of other authors add their own touches to the ancient land where Heralds “Chosen” from all walks of life by magical horse-like Companions patrol their ancient kingdom, dispensing justice, facing adversaries, and protecting their monarch and country from whatever threatens. Trained rigorously by the Herald’s Collegium, these protectors each have extraordinary Gifts: Mindspeaking, FarSeeing, FarSpeaking, Empathy, Firestarting and ForeSeeing, and are bonded for life with their mysterious Companions. Travel with these astounding adventurers in these original stories.
Enemy in the Dark (Far Star Trilogy #2), by Jay Allan, (December 1, Harper Voyager)
Successfully completing their mission to rescue Marshal Augustin Lucerne’s daughter, the crew of the Wolf’s Claw are enjoying some rest. Except Blackhawk. The space gun for hire cannot escape Lucerne’s pleas for help against growing imperial control in the Far Stars. His resistance crumbles when Lucerne presents evidence that the imperial governor has been manipulating the conflicts in the Far Stars. Convinced of the danger of imperial domination, Blackhawk and his crew board the Wolf’s Claw and set out to gather intelligence on the Empire’s movements. Deep in the territory of the Far Stars, he discovers that the imperial governor’s machinations are far reaching, and threaten the independence of every world this side of the Void. Blackhawk is beginning to realize he can no longer remain a prisoner to his own past while the future of the Far Stars is in jeopardy.
Forbidden, by Eve Bunting, (December 1, Clarion)
In early-nineteenth century Scotland, sixteen-year-old Josie, an orphan, is sent to live with an aunt and uncle on the rocky, stormy northwest coast. Everything and everyone in her new surroundings, including her relatives, is sinister, threatening, and mysterious. She’s told that Eli, the young man she’s attracted to, is forbidden to her, but not why. Spirited, curious, and determined, Josie sets out to learn the village’s secrets and discovers evil, fueled by heartless greed, as well as a ghostly presence eager for revenge. An author’s note gives the historical inspiration for this story.
Magic Gifts: A Kate Daniels Novella (Kate Daniels #5.4), by Ilona Andrews, (December 1 InterMix)
It isn’t often that Kate Daniels and the Beast Lord Curran get to take a break from protecting their pack and enjoy some time for themselves. So when Curran offers Kate a romantic dinner in town, there’s no way she’s going to pass. But their quiet night doesn’t stay quiet for long. The trouble starts with a necromancer dying at a nearby table, continues with bloodthirsty vampires crashing through the windows, and ends with more blood on the walls than any dining establishment needs. Pulled into a deadly game neither wants to play, Kate and Curran find themselves dealing with the vile undead and tolerating a clan of maniacal, hard partying Vikings while desperately trying to save the life of an innocent child. Novella is after Magic Slays, same time as Andrea in Gunmetal Magic, both intersect. Gunmetal Magic bonus. (ebook only)
Meeting Infinity (Infinity Project #4), edited by Jonathan Strahan, (December 1, Solaris)
Whether it’s climate change, inundated coastlines and drowned cities; the cramped confines of a tin can hurtling through space to the outer reaches of our Solar System; or the rush of being uploaded into some cyberspace, our minds and bodies are going to have to change and change a lot. Meeting Infinity will be one hundred thousand words of SF filled with action and adventure that attempts to answer the question: how much do we need to change to meet tomorrow and live in the future? The authors contributing tho this collection are: Gregory Benford, James S.A. Corey, Aliette de Bodard, Kameron Hurley, Simon Ings, Madeline Ashby, John Barnes, Gwyneth Jones, Nancy Kress, Yoon Ha Lee, Ian McDonald, Ramez Naam, An Owomoyela, Benjanun Sriduangkaew, Bruce Sterling and Sean Williams
Nevermore (Cal Leandros #10), by Rob Thurman, (December 1, Roc)
Caliban is a dead man. The Vigil, a group devoted to concealing the paranormal from humanity, has decided Cal has stepped out of the shadows once too often, and death is the only sentence. They plan to send a supernatural assassin into the past to take down the younger, less lethal Cal. But things change when The Vigil makes one last attempt on Caliban’s life in the present, and end up destroying everyone and everything he cares about. Now, Cal has to save himself, warn those closest to him, and kill every Vigil bastard who stole his world. But if he fails, he and everyone in his life will be history.
Nexis (Tricksters #1), by A.L. Davroe, (December 1, Entangled Teen)
In the domed city of Evanescence, appearance is everything. A Natural Born amongst genetically-altered Aristocrats, all Ella ever wanted was to be like everyone else. Augmented, sparkling, and perfect. Then, the crash. Devastated by her father’s death and struggling with her new physical limitations, Ella is terrified to learn she is not just alone, but little more than a prisoner. Her only escape is to lose herself in Nexis, the hugely popular virtual reality game her father created. In Nexis she meets Guster, a senior player who guides Ella through the new world she now inhabits. He offers Ella guidance, friendship, and something more. Something that allows her to forget about the “real” world, and makes her feel whole again. But Nexis isn’t quite the game everyone thinks it is. And it’s been waiting for Ella.
Otherworld Protector (Otherworld #1), by Jane Godman, (December 1, Harlequin Nocturne)
When Stella Fallon journeys to Spain for a dream job, she never suspects that a cataclysmic confrontation is looming. Or that she is the last in an ancient line of dark sorcerers. For her new employer, an electronics billionaire, is actually a Faerie King desperate to harness Stella’s powers so he can rule the Otherworld. The only one who can protect Stella is a man she once thought her guardian angel. Cal becomes human, but his centuries-old secret could destroy her trust. Still, the pair cannot deny their white-hot attraction as they seek refuge in a cave to prepare for a battle of epic magnitude.
Pathfinder Tales: Bloodbound (Pathfinder Tales #30), by F. Wesley Schneider, (December 1, Tor)
Larsa is a dhampir, half vampire, half human. In the gritty streets and haunted moors of gothic Ustalav, she’s an agent for the royal spymaster, keeping peace between the capital’s secret vampire population and its huddled human masses. Yet when a noblewoman’s entire house is massacred by vampiric invaders, Larsa is drawn into a deadly game of cat-and-mouse that will reveal far more about her own heritage than she ever wanted to know. A dark fantasy adventure of murder, intrigue, and secrets best left buried, set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.
Rhythm of the Imperium (Imperium #3), by Jody Lynn Nye, (December 1, Baen)
The Zang, an elder race of the galaxy, are intelligent, curious, and powerful. They practice a most unusual art form: they bonsai star systems. Lieutenant Lord Thomas Kinago, accompanied as always by his personal assistant Parsons, sets out on a several-week jaunt to see the Zang destroy a moon to enhance the beauty of a star system. The trip is sidelined when Kinago’s uncle offers to take him to the seldom seen human homeworld, Earth. Kinago goes along, only to find on his return that the planet he’s just visited may be in danger of being eradicated. Earth lies within the protective sphere of the Zang, but enemies of the Imperium are lobbying to have Sol system turned over to them. It is up to Kinago and Parsons to save Earth. Kinago has the key, but will he be able to persuade the Zang to spare the human homeworld before it’s too late?
Shadow’s End (Elder Races #9), by Thea Harrison, (December 1, Berkley)
For Beluviel, consort to the Elven High Lord, and Graydon, gryphon and First Sentinel of the Wyr, even the slightest desire for each other is forbidden. But two hundred years ago, after a desperate play to save Beluviel’s stepson left them indebted to the cruel Djinn Malphas, they found their fates inexorably linked together, and the hunger between them growing too strong to ignore. Two centuries later, with their debt to Malphas coming due, Beluviel and Graydon realize that, if they are to stand any chance of saving their souls, they must once again work together, this time more closely than ever before. But every moment they spend with each other brings them nearer to losing something even more vital, their hearts.
Slavemakers, by Joseph Wallace, (December 1, Ace)
Twenty years ago, venomous parasitic wasps known as “thieves” staged a massive, apocalyptic attack on another species, Homo sapiens, putting them on the brink of extinction. But some humans did survive. The colony called Refugia is home to a population of 281, including scientists, a pilot, and a tough young woman named Kait. In the African wilderness, there’s Aisha Rose, nearly feral, born at the end of the old world. And in the ruins of New York City, there’s a mysterious, powerful boy, a skilled hunter, isolated and living by his wits. As the survivors journey through the wastelands, they will find that they are not the only humans left on earth. Not by a long shot. But they may be the only ones left who are not under the thieves’ control.
Storm Front, by Robert Conroy, (December 1, Baen)
No one thought much about the storm. Not the National Weather Service and not the big-name meteorologists. Experienced local weatherman Wally Wellman thought there might be trouble, but even he couldn’t predict the natural disaster that was about to lay siege to the quiet suburb of Sheridan, Michigan. With resources stretched to their breaking point, Sheridan police officer Mike Stuart must try to keep the town safe. There’s something lurking in Sheridan. Something as cold as the snow and ice, and just as deadly. A pair of escaped convicts, on the run south, have been stranded in town. But they don’t plan on laying low. And as the death toll rises, Officer Stuart must face down enemies far more dangerous, and unpredictable, than any storm.
Sweet Ruin (Immortals after Dark #16), by Kresley Cole, (December 1, Gallery Books)
Growing up, Josephine didn’t know who or what she was, just that she was “bad,” an outcast with strange powers. Protecting her baby brother Thaddeus became her entire life. The day he was taken away began Jo’s transition from angry girl, to would-be superhero, to enchanting villain. Archer Rune the Baneblood never fails to eliminate his target. In his sights: the oldest living Valkyrie. Before he can strike, he encounters a vampiric creature whose beauty mesmerizes him. With one bite, she steals his forbidden blood, and jeopardizes the secrets of his brethren. Rune knows he must not trust Josephine, yet he’s unable to turn her away. When Jo betrays the identity of the one man she will die to protect, she and Rune become locked in a treacherous battle of wills that pits ultimate loyalty against unbridled lust.
Sword of Destiny (The Witcher #2), by Andrzej Sapkowski, (December 1, Orbit)
Geralt is a witcher, a man whose magic powers, enhanced by long training and a mysterious elixir, have made him a brilliant fighter and a merciless assassin. Yet he is no ordinary murderer: his targets are the multifarious monsters and vile fiends that ravage the land and attack the innocent. This is a collection of short stories, following the adventures of the collection The Last Wish. Join Geralt as he battles monsters, demons and prejudices alike. (U.S. Release)
Tales of the Time Scouts, by Robert Asprin and Linda Evans, (December 1, Baen) (omnibus)
Two novels of time-traveling adventure. Includes Time Scout and Wagers of Sin. When an experiment on an orbiting space station went wrong, bad wrong, ripples in time washed over the Earth bringing global disaster. The survivors, beginning to rebuild, learned that they were now able to travel into the past, utilizing the remnant time strings. But first, the time strings had to be mapped. That was the job of the brave pioneers known as time scouts. Their occupation was only slightly less dangerous than front line combat, and when it was discovered that a time traveler who wasn’t extremely careful could zap himself out of existence, elaborate rules to prevent that evolved, and it was the job of the time scouts to enforce them.
Tarnished (Perfected #2), by Kate Jarvik Birch, (December 1, Entangled Teen)
Ella was genetically engineered to be the perfect pet, graceful, demure, and kept. In a daring move, she escaped her captivity and took refuge in Canada. But while she can think and act as she pleases, the life of a liberated pet is just as confining as the Congressman’s gilded cage. Her escape triggered a backlash, and now no one’s safe, least of all the other pets. She’s trapped, unable to get back to Penn, the boy she loves, or help the girls who need her. Back in the United States, pets are turning up dead. With help from a very unexpected source, Ella slips deep into the dangerous black market, posing as a tarnished pet available to buy or sell. If she’s lucky, she’ll be able to rescue Penn and expose the truth about the breeding program. If she fails, Ella will pay not only with her life, but the lives of everyone she’s tried to save.
The Angel of Highgate, by Vaughn Entwistle, (December 1, Titan)
It is October 1859, and notorious philanderer Lord Geoffrey Thraxton cares for nothing except his own amusement. After humiliating an odious literary critic and surviving the resulting duel, he boasts of his contempt for mortality, and insults the attending physician. It is a mistake he will come to regret. When Thraxton becomes obsessed with a mysterious woman who appears to him one fog-shrouded night in Highgate Cemetery, he unwittingly provides the doctor with the perfect means to punish a man with no fear of death.
The Curse of Jacob Tracy, by Holly Messinger, (December 1, Thomas Dunne)
St. Louis in 1880 is full of ghosts, and Jacob Tracy can see them all. Ever since he nearly died on the battlefield at Antietam, Trace has been haunted by the country’s restless dead. He stays out of ghost-populated areas as much as possible these days, guiding wagon trains West from St. Louis, with his partner, Boz. Trace gets an unusual job offer. Miss Fairweather needs someone to retrieve a dead friend’s legacy from a nearby town, Miss Fairweather admits to knowing about Trace’s curse, and suggests she might help him learn to control it. As she steers him into one macabre situation after another, his powers flourish, and Trace begins to realize some good might be done with this curse. Miss Fairweather is harboring some dark secrets of her own, and her meddling has brought Trace to the attention of something much older and more dangerous than any ghost.
The Devil’s Engine: Hellraisers (The Devil’s Engine #1), by Alexander Gordon Smith, (December 1, Farrar, Straus and Girous BYR)
There is a machine from the darkest parts of history, concealed in an impossible location, that can make any wish come true, and the only price you have to pay is your soul. Known as the Devil’s Engine, this device powers a brutal war between good and evil that will decide the fate of every living thing on Earth. When a 16-year-old asthmatic kid named Marlow Green unwittingly rescues an ass-kicking secret soldier from a demonic attack in the middle of his Staten Island neighborhood, he finds himself following her into a centuries-old conflict between a group of mysterious protectors and the legions of the Devil himself. Faced with superpowers, monsters, machine guns, and a lot worse, Marlow knows it’s going to be a breathless ride, and not just because he’s lost his inhaler along the way.
The Prison in Antares (Dead Enders #2), by Mike Resnick, (December 1, Pyr)
The Traanskei Coalition’s greatest weapon is the Q bomb, and after years of failure, the Democracy has come up with a defense against it. The problem is that they killed most of the team that created it. The sole survivor, Edgar Nmumba, was kidnapped by the Coalition. Only Nmumba can duplicate the work fast enough to prevent the loss of another dozen populated planets. Nathan Pretorius and his team of Dead Enders will require all their skills and cunning to rescue him, sane and in one piece, from the Coalition’s best-hidden and best-guarded prison, somewhere in the Antares sector. But in a game of cross and double-cross, can they find him before it’s too late?
The Rising (The Alchemy Wars #2), by Ian Tregillis, (December 1, Orbit)
Jax, a rogue Clakker, has wreaked havoc upon the Clockmakers’ Guild by destroying the Grand Forge. Reborn in the flames, he must begin his life as a free Clakker, but liberation proves its own burden. Berenice, formerly the legendary spymaster of New France, mastermind behind her nation’s attempts to undermine the Dutch Hegemony, has been banished from her homeland and captured by the Clockmakers Guild’s draconian secret police force. Meanwhile, Captain Hugo Longchamp is faced with rallying the beleaguered and untested defenders of Marseilles-in-the-West for the inevitable onslaught from the Brasswork Throne and its army of mechanical soldiers.
The Rosemary Spell, by Virginia Zimmerman, (December 1, Clarion)
Part mystery, part literary puzzle, part life-and-death quest, and chillingly magical, this novel has plenty of suspense for adventure fans and is a treat for readers who love books, words, and clues. Best friends Rosie and Adam find an old book with blank pages that fill with handwriting before their eyes. Something about this magical book has the power to make people vanish, even from memory. The power lies in a poem, a spell. When Adam’s older sister, Shelby, disappears, they struggle to retain their memories of her as they race against time to bring her back from the void, risking their own lives in the process.
The Secret of the Nagas (The Shiva Trilogy #2), by Amish Tripathi, (December 1, Jo Fletcher Books)
Today, He is a God. 4000 years ago, He was just a man. The hunt is on. The sinister Naga warrior has killed his friend Brahaspati and now stalks his wife Sati. Shiva, the Tibetan immigrant who is the prophesied destroyer of evil, will not rest till he finds his demonic adversary. His vengeance and the path to evil will lead him to the door of the Nagas, the serpent people. A kingdom is dying as it is held to ransom for a miracle drug. A crown prince is murdered. The Vasudevs Shivas philosopher guides betray his unquestioning faith as they take the aid of the dark side. Even the perfect empire, Meluha is riddled with a terrible secret in Maika, the city of births. Unknown to Shiva, a master puppeteer is playing a grand game. In a journey that will take him across the length and breadth of ancient India, Shiva searches for the truth in a land of deadly mysteries only to find that nothing is what it seems. (U.S. Release)
The Warrior Vampire (Last True Vampire #2), by Kate Baxter, (December 1, St. Martin’s)
Naya Morales is no ordinary mortal. Born with a shaman’s power, she has devoted her life to tracking down stolen magic, and punishing those who take it. But one fateful night, she follows the alluring call of a sensual magic that is too glorious to be true, and finds herself face to face with a stunningly handsome thief who is too magnificent to resist. From the moment he sees her, Ronan knows Naya is his mate. Driven by a deep, almost mystical connection, he aches for her body, hungers for her blood, and swears their souls are anchored together. Naya refuses to believe the words of a vampire, or risk the wrath of her tribe. But when she tries to make Ronan her prisoner, neither chains of silver nor fires of hell can help her escape the truth: she is the one who’s been captured.
Their Fractured Light (Starbound #3), by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner, (December 1, Disney-Hyperion)
A year ago, Flynn Cormac and Jubilee Chase made the now infamous Avon Broadcast, calling on the galaxy to witness for their planet, and protect them from destruction. A year before that, Tarver Merendsen and Lilac LaRoux were rescued from a terrible shipwreck. In the center of the universe on the planet of Corinth, all four are about to collide with two new players, who will bring the fight against LaRoux Industries to a head. Gideon Marchant is an eighteen-year-old computer hacker. Sofia Quinn has a killer smile, and by the time you’re done noticing it, she’s got you offering up your wallet, your car, and anything else she desires. When a LaRoux Industries security breach interrupts Gideon and Sofia’s separate attempts to infiltrate their headquarters, they’re forced to work together to escape. Working together might be the best chance they have to expose the secrets LRI is so desperate to hide.
Thunderbird (Ancient Shores #2), by Jack McDevitt, (December 1, Ace)
A working stargate dating back more than ten thousand years has been discovered in North Dakota, on a Sioux reservation near Devils Lake. Travel through the gate currently leads to three equally mysterious destinations: (1) an apparently empty garden world, quickly dubbed Eden; (2) a strange maze of underground passageways; or (3) a space station with a view of a galaxy that appears to be the Milky Way. The race to explore and claim the stargate quickly escalates, and those involved divide into opposing camps who view the teleportation technology either as an unprecedented opportunity for scientific research or a disastrous threat to national security. In the middle of the maelstrom stands Sioux chairman James Walker. Questions about what the stargate means for humanity’s role in the galaxy cannot be ignored. Especially since travel through the stargate isn’t necessarily only one way.
Wild Wolf Claiming (Bloodrunners #8), by Rhyannon Byrd, (December 1, Harlequin Nocturne)
Werewolf Elliot Connors had come to the sleepy town of Charity to stop a madman from claiming his next victims for his macabre collection of sex slaves. After saving Skye Hewitt from being kidnapped, Elliot desires the diner waitress more than his next breath. All his senses scream that Skye is his life-mate. But his past has taught him well that nothing worth having ever comes easy. Now things are about to get bloody, dangerous, and wild. (ebook only)
Your Brother’s Blood (The Walkin’ Trilogy #1), by David Towsey, (December 1, Jo Fletcher Books)
An unnamed event has wiped out most of humanity, scattering its remnants across vast and now barren lands. Small clusters of humans still cling to existence in a post-apocalyptic world that is increasingly overrun by those who have risen from the dead, or, as the living call them, the Walkin’. Thomas, homeward bound to the small frontier town of Barkley, is filled with hope at the thought of being reunited with his wife, Sarah, and daughter, Mary. He also happens to be among the Walkin’. Thomas soon realizes that the living, who are increasingly drawn to the followers of the Good Book, are not kindly disposed to the likes of him. When he learns what the good people of Barkley intend to do to him, he may just have to kidnap his daughter to save her from a fate worse than becoming a member of the undead. When the people of Barkley send out a posse in pursuit of father and daughter, the race for survival truly begins. (U.S. Release)
Croc’s Return (Bitten Point #1), by Eve Langlais, (December 3, CreateSpace)
Take one deadly bite and, bam, a man’s life is changed forever, or so Caleb discovers when a loss of control leads to him joining the military and leaving everything behind. Time goes by … years spent silent and alone. Until it’s time to come back, a scarred veteran. Perhaps it’s not too late to right some wrongs. Kiss a certain pair of sweet lips one more time. If only Renny would let him. It doesn’t take Caleb long to realize Renny’s just the thing this croc needs to bring him back to life. What if he loses control again? Too bad, he can’t stay away, especially not when he discovers her secret. Add in a strange creature stalking the townsfolk and there is no way he’s leaving her alone. Years ago it just about killed him to leave, but Caleb’s a changed man now. A darker kind of animal, and this retired soldier is ready to kill so he can stay. Welcome to Bitten Point, where the swamp doesn’t just keep its secrets, it sometimes eats them.
Experimental Film, by Gemma Files, (December 3, ChiZine)
Experimental Film is a contemporary ghost story in which former Canadian film history teacher Lois Cairns, jobless and depressed in the wake of her son’s autism diagnosis, accidentally discovers the existence of lost early 20th century Ontario filmmaker Mrs. A. Macalla Whitcomb. By deciding to investigate how Mrs. Whitcomb’s obsessions might have led to her mysterious disappearance, Lois unwittingly invites the forces which literally haunt Mrs. Whitcomb’s films into her life, eventually putting her son, her husband and herself in danger. Experimental Film mixes painful character detail with a creeping aura of dread to produce a fictionalized “memoir” designed to play on its readers’ narrative expectations and pack an existentialist punch.
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!