Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Incoming Books: August 14, 2013

Transcendental

We have our Incoming Books feature for August 14, 2013.

Macmillan/Tor

Transcendental by James Gunn

Riley, a veteran of interstellar war, is one of many beings from many different worlds aboard a ship on a pilgrimage that spans the galaxy. However, he is not journeying to achieve transcendence, a vague mystical concept that has drawn everyone else on the ship to this journey into the unknown at the far edge of the galaxy. His mission is to find and kill the prophet who is reputed to help others transcend. While their ship speeds through space, the voyage is marred by violence and betrayal, making it clear that some of the ship’s passengers are not the spiritual seekers they claim to be.

Like the pilgrims in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, a number of those on the starship share their unique stories. But as tensions rise, Riley realizes that the ship is less like the Canterbury Tales and more like a harrowing, deadly ship of fools. When he becomes friendly with a mysterious passenger named Asha, he thinks she’s someone he can trust. However, like so many others on the ship, Asha is more than she appears. Uncovering her secrets could be the key to Riley’s personal quest, or make him question everything he thought he knew about Transcendentalism and his mission to stop it.

James Gunn's Transcendental is a space adventure filled with excitement and intrigue that explores the nature of what unifies all beings.

Tor Books | 8/27/2013 | Hardcover | 304 pages

Billy Moon

Billy Moon by Douglas Lain

In Douglas Lain's debut novel set during the turbulent year of 1968, Christopher Robin Milne, the inspiration for his father’s fictional creation, struggles to emerge from a manufactured life, in a story of hope and transcendence.

Billy Moon was Christopher Robin Milne, the son of A. A. Milne, the world-famous author of Winnie the Pooh and other beloved children's classics. Billy's life was no fairy-tale, though. Being the son of a famous author meant being ignored and even mistreated by famous parents; he had to make his own way in the world, define himself, and reconcile his self-image with the image of him known to millions of children. A veteran of World War II, a husband and father, he is jolted out of midlife ennui when a French college student revolutionary asks him to come to the chaos of Paris in revolt. Against a backdrop of the apocalyptic student protests and general strike that forced France to a standstill that spring, Milne's new French friend is a wild card, able to experience alternate realities of the past and present. Through him, Milne's life is illuminated and transformed, as are the world-altering events of that year.

In a time when the Occupy movement eerily mirrors the political turbulence of 1968, this magic realist novel is an especially relevant and important book.

Tor Books | 8/27/2013 | Hardcover |272 pages

Quick Fix

Quick Fix by Linda Grimes

QUICK FIX—the second installment of the original urban fantasy series by LINDA GRIMES.

Ciel Halligan, an aura adaptor with a chameleon-like ability to step into the lives of her clients and fix their problems for them—as them—is working a job at the National Zoo with her boyfriend, Billy, and his ten-year-old sister, Molly. It's supposed to be a quick fix, giving her time to decide if it's wise to pursue the romantic relationship her charming scoundrel of a best friend wants, or if she should give Mark, the CIA spook she's crushed on since hormones first rattled her pubescent brain, a chance to step up to the plate.

Molly has already begun to show signs of being an adaptor herself. She's young for it, but she's always been precocious, so it's not impossible. What is impossible is her taking on the form of the baby orangutan she touches—adaptors can only project human auras. Until now, apparently. Worse, Molly is stuck in ape form. She can't change herself back.

Escaping from the zoo with their new baby orang, Ciel and Billy head for New York City and the only person they know can help: Ciel's brother James, a non-adaptor scientist who's determined to crack the aura adaptor genetic code. But when Billy winds up in jail, accused of attempted murder, Ciel begins to suspect Molly's unusual adapting ability is more than just a fluke. Who's been experimenting on Molly, and what do they hope to gain? And will Ciel survive to find out?

Tor Books | 8/20/2013 | Trade Paperback | 352 pages

Elysian Fields

Elysian Fields Sentinels of New Orleans (Volume 3 of 5) by Suzanne Johnson

Elysian Fields by Suzanne Johnson is the fun, fast-paced third book in the Sentinels of New Orleans, a series of urban fantasy novels filled with wizards, mermen, and pirates. These novels are perfect for readers of paranormal fiction and “fans of Charlaine Harris and Cat Adams” (Booklist) and RT Bookreviews agrees that “for readers missing Sookie Stackhouse, this series may be right up your alley.”

The mer feud has been settled, but life in South Louisiana still has more twists and turns than the muddy Mississippi.

New Orleanians are under attack from a copycat killer mimicking the crimes of a 1918 serial murderer known as the Axeman of New Orleans. Thanks to a tip from the undead pirate Jean Lafitte, DJ Jaco knows the attacks aren’t random—an unknown necromancer has resurrected the original Axeman of New Orleans, and his ultimate target is a certain blonde wizard. Namely, DJ.

Combating an undead serial killer as troubles pile up around her isn’t easy. Jake Warin’s loup-garou nature is spiraling downward, enigmatic neighbor Quince Randolph is acting weirder than ever, the Elders are insisting on lessons in elven magic from the world’s most annoying wizard, and former partner Alex Warin just turned up on DJ’s to-do list. Not to mention big maneuvers are afoot in the halls of preternatural power.

Suddenly, moving to the Beyond as Jean Lafitte’s pirate wench could be DJ’s best option.

Tor Books | 8/13/2013 | Hardcover | 352 pages

Robert the Bruce

Robert the Bruce by Jack Whyte

From author Jack Whyte comes the true story of Robert the Bruce: a passionate man. An incredible warrior. And one of Scotland’s finest. 

Robert I, or as he is known to a grateful Scottish nation, Robert the Bruce, was one of Scotland’s greatest kings, as well as one of the most famous warriors of his generation.  He spearheaded the valiant Scots in their quest for freedom, leading his people during the Wars of Scottish Independence against the Kingdom of England during the middle ages. His reign saw the recognition of Scotland as an independent nation, and today Bruce is remembered in Scotland as a national hero.

It was by no means a fair and easy road for this indomitable fighter. As a young man he saw the English king Edward I award the vacant Crown of Scotland to John Balliol. The nation quickly splintered into factions and this spurred Robert and his father to at first side with Edward and then against John, whom many of the nobles did not feel was the correct person to guide the nation. Thus began a decades-long path for Scottish freedom. To achieve this goal, Robert sometimes had to delicately balance the power of the nobles against the might of the English. He was a tireless campaigner and after a full life of battle and diplomacy, in May 1328, King Edward III signed the Treaty of Edinburgh-Northampton, which recognized Scotland as an independent kingdom and Bruce as its king.

Forge Books | 8/6/2013 | Hardcover |592 pages

Mist

Mist (Midgard - Volume 1) by Susan Krinard

New York Times bestselling author SUSAN KRINARD launches her first urban fantasy series with MIST.

Mist lives a normal life. She has a normal job, a normal boyfriend, and a normal apartment in San Francisco. She never thinks about her past if she can help it.

She survived. That’s the end of it.

But then a snowy winter descends upon San Francisco. In June. And in quick succession, Mist is attacked by a frost giant in a public park and runs into an elf disguised as a homeless person on the streets…and then the man Mist believed was her mortal boyfriend reveals himself to be the trickster god, Loki, alive and well after all these years.

Mist’s normal world is falling apart. But thankfully, Mist isn’t quite so normal herself. She’s a Valkyrie, and she’s going to need all her skill to thwart Loki’s schemes and save modern Earth from the ravages of a battle of the gods.

Tor Books | July 2013 | Trade Paperback | 384 pages

Thieves' Quarry

Thieves' Quarry  (The Thieftaker Chronicles-Volume 2 of 4) by D. B. Jackson

Ethan Kaille isn’t the likeliest hero. A former sailor with a troubled past, Ethan is a thieftaker, using conjuring skills to hunt down those who steal from the good citizens of Boston. And while chasing down miscreants in 1768 makes his life a perilous one, the simmering political tensions between loyalists like himself and rabble-rousing revolutionaries like Samuel Adams and others of his ilk are perhaps even more dangerous to his health.

When one hundred sailors of King George III's Royal Navy are mysteriously killed on a ship in Boston Harbor, Ethan is thrust into dire peril. For he—and not Boston’s premier thieftaker, Sephira Pryce—is asked to find the truth behind their deaths. City Sheriff Edmund Greenleaf suspects conjuring was used in the dastardly crime, and even Pryce knows that Ethan is better equipped to contend with matters of what most of Boston considers dark arts. But even Ethan is daunted by magic powerful enough to fell so many in a single stroke. When he starts to investigate, he realizes that the mass murderer will stop at nothing to evade capture. And making his task more difficult is the British fleet's occupation of the city after the colonials' violent protests after the seizure of John Hancock's ship. Kaille will need all his own magic, street smarts, and a bit of luck to keep this Boston massacre from giving the hotheads of Colonial Boston an excuse for inciting a riot—or worse.

Thieves' Quarry is a stunning second novel in D. B. Jackson's Thieftaker Chronicles.

Tor Books | July 2013 | Hardcover | 320 pages

Night Pilgrims

Night Pilgrims (A Saint-Germain Novel St. Germain Volume 26 of 27) by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro

Chelsea Quinn Yarbro's first Saint-Germain novel, Hotel Transylvania, was recently nominated as Vampire Novel of the Century. Her Saint-Germain cycle, now comprised of more than twenty-five books, is a masterwork of historical horror fiction. The vampire Count Saint-Germain has crisscrossed the world many times, seeking love and the blood of life and seeing humanity at its best and worst.

In Night Pilgrims, Saint-Germain is living in a monastery in Egypt when he is hired to guide a group of pilgrims to underground churches in southern Egypt. The vampire finds a companion in a lovely widow who later fears that her dalliance with the Count will prevent her from reaching Heaven. 

The pilgrims begin to fall prey to the trials of travel in the Holy Lands; some see visions and hear the word of God; others are seduced by desires for riches and power. A visit to the Chapel of the Holy Grail brings many quarrels to a head; Saint-Germain must use all his diplomacy and a good deal of his strength to keep the pilgrims from slaughtering one another.

Tor Books | 7/30/2013 |Hardcover | 416 pages

Misc. Publishers

Vortex

VORTEX, Essays from a Sea of Nightmares by Robert Dunbar

Dark currents flow beneath the surface... powerful, deadly... ancient. Monsters churn the dark waters of the soul.

VORTEX explores the folklore that inspired many great works of dark literature.

From the Introduction: They say a basis in fact underlies most legends. They say it all the time, all those Wise Elders in all those old horror films, the high priests, the scientists, the gypsy fortune tellers. On this single issue they agree unanimously. More to the point (certainly to the point of this book), deep currents of tradition and superstition swirl through most classic works of horror fiction.

Paperback | 216 pages | May 1st 2013 | Uninvited Books

The Widows of Braxton County

The Widows of Braxton County by Jess McConkey.

Family secrets can bind and destroy.

Kate is ready to put her nomadic, city-dwelling past behind her when she marries Joe Krause and moves with him to the Iowa farm that has been in his family for more than 140 years. But life on the farm isn't quite as idyllic as she'd hoped. It's filled with chores, judgmental neighbors, and her mother-in-law, who—unbeknownst to Kate until after the wedding—will be living with them.

As Kate struggles to find her place in the small farming community, she begins to realize that her husband and his family are not who she thought they were. According to town gossip, the Krause family harbors a long-kept secret about a mysterious death that haunts Kate as a dangerous, unexplainable chain of events begins.

William Morrow Paperbacks | 7/23/2013 | Trade PB; Pages: 384

Of Blood and Brothers

Of Blood and Brothers: A Novel of the Civil War by E. Michael Helms

Of Blood and Brothers: Book One - A Novel of the Civil War is a page-turning novel inspired by two southern brothers who fought on opposite sides during America’s Civil War. There can be only one victor, on the field of battle and in the heart of the woman both love; and as the brothers discover, winning the peace can prove as costly as winning the war.

Book One follows the exploits of Daniel Malburn and the 6th FL Infantry through the battles of Chickamauga and Lookout Mountain/Missionary Ridge. While working at the salt works along St. Andrew Bay, younger brother Elijah is taken prisoner by Union Forces. Faced with imprisonment, he reluctantly chooses to join the 2nd US FL Cavalry as a scout, only to learn he must lead a destructive raid on his lifelong home.     

282 pages | Koehler Books | September 1, 2013  saving paradise

Saving Paradise by Mark Bond

When a beautiful journalist drowns mysteriously in Honolulu Bay, former Special Forces veteran Pono Hawkins, now a well-known Hawaii surfer and international correspondent for surfing magazines, soon gets embroiled in trying to find why she died. What he learns quickly makes him a target for murder or life in prison as a cabal of powerful corporations, foreign killers and crooked politicians turns the blame on him.

Haunted by memories of Afghanistan, and determined to protect the Hawaii he loves from dirty politics tied to huge destructive energy developments, Pono turns to Special Forces buddies and his own skills to fight his deadly enemies, trying both to save himself and find her killers.

Alive with the sights, sounds and history of Hawaii, Saving Paradise is also a deeply rich portrait of what Pono calls “the seamy side of paradise”, and an exciting thriller of politics, lies and remorseless murder.

Bestselling novelist, war and human rights journalist, international energy expert and award-winning poet, Mike Bond lives on the paradisiacal Hawaiian island of Molokai. Based on his experiences in dangerous, remote and war-torn regions of the world, his critically acclaimed novels depict the innate hunger of the human heart for good, the intense joys of love, the terror and fury of battle, the sinister vagaries of international politics and multinational corporations, and the vanishing beauty of the natural world.

302 pages | Mandevilla Press | November 20, 2012

glitter

Glitter & Mayhem edited by Lynne M. Thomas, John Klima and Michael Damian Thomas

Welcome to Glitter & Mayhem, the most glamorous party in the multiverse.

Step behind the velvet rope of these fabulous Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror tales of roller rinks, nightclubs, glam aliens, party monsters, drugs, sex, glitter, and debauchery.

Dance through nightclubs, roller derby with cryptids and aliens, be seduced by otherworldly creatures, and ingest cocktails that will alter your existence forever.

Your hosts are the Hugo Award-winning editors John Klima (Electric Velocipede) and Lynne M. Thomas (Apex Magazine), and the Hugo-nominated editor Michael Damian Thomas (Apex Magazine).

Join glittery authors Christopher Barzak (One for Sorrow) and Daryl Gregory (Pandemonium) on the dance floor, drink cocktails with Maria Dahvana Headley (Queen of Kings: A Novel of Cleopatra, the Vampire) and Tim Pratt (Marla Mason series), and skate with Seanan McGuire (InCryptid series), Diana Rowland (Kara Gillian series), and Maurice Broaddus (The Knights of Breton Court series). The fantastic Amber Benson gets the party started with her floor-rattling introduction (Calliope Reaper-Jones series).

September 1, 2013 | Apex | Ebook

Alt Hist Issue 5

Alt Hist Issue 5 edited by Mark Lord

Alt Hist Issue 5 features stories covering a variety of historical periods from the 1800s to post-War USA.

This issue includes five new original works of fiction including stories about Al Capone and Italian Futurism, the aftermath of the American Civil War, the real Frankenstein, the Bridge that consumes the souls of men, and the latest installment in a series of stories about a successful Nazi invasion of Britain.

Alt Hist is the magazine of Historical Fiction and Alternate History, published twice a year by Alt Hist Press.

  • After Mary by Priya Sharma
  • AD 1929 by Douglas Texter
  • The Stiff Heart by Meredith Miller
  • The Bridge by Micah Hyatt
  • Battalion 202: Rotten Parchment Bonds by Jonathan Doering

96 pages | CreateSpace | May 8, 2013

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Appalachian Undead edited by Eugene Johnson and Jason Sizemore

Appalachian Undead takes a look at the dark side of Appalachia, where the Undead walk, driven by old magic and worse, their hunger for us.

Almost Heaven…or is it?

The mountain’s enduring beauty holds something dark. Something dreadful. Something hungry for our flesh, our brains. Something dead yet not quite dead, driven by magic as old as the coal seams and the hills.

Come see the dark side of the mountains where the undead walk. Appalachia stands against an ever-hungry, never-tiring army created by the region’s own mysteries and lore. Appalachian Undead collects intriguing zombie tales by some of the best names in horror, including John Skipp, Jonathan Maberry, Gary A. Braunbeck, Tim Lebbon, Elizabeth Massie, Lucy Snyder, Bev Vincent, Tim Waggoner and many more.

212 pages | Apex Book Company |Second Edition- July 27, 2013

84214936

Celestial Inventories by Steve Rasnic Tem

Celestial Inventories features twenty- two stories collected from rare chapbooks, anthologies, and obscure magazines, along with a new story written specifically for this volume. All represent the slipstream segment of Steve Rasnic Tem’s large body of tales: imaginative, difficult-to-pigeonhole works of the fantastic crossing conventional boundaries between science fiction, fantasy, horror, literary fiction, bizarro, magic realism, and the new weird. Several of these stories have previously appeared in Best of the Year compilations and have been the recipients of major F & SF nominations and awards.

ChiZine | 325 pages | August 15, 2013 | paperback

84214936

Tell My Sorrow to the Stones by Christopher Golden

A circus clown willing to give anything to be funny. A spectral gunslinger who must teach a young boy to defend the ones he loves. A lonely widower making a farewell tour of the places that meant the world to his late wife. A faded Hollywood actress out to deprive her ex-husband of his prize possession. A grieving mother who will wait by the railroad tracks for a ghostly train that always has room for one more. A young West Virginia miner whose only hope of survival is a bedtime story. These are just some of the characters to be found in Tell My Sorrows to the Stones.

ChiZine | 325 pages | August 15, 2013 | paperback

4 comments:

Sarah M said...

Looks like you got a great mix. Mist looks the best, followed by Glitter & Mayhem.

ediFanoB said...

I have had the pleasure to read and review Alt Hist Issue 5.

My review is available over at Edi#s Book Lighthouse

Shellie Nunn said...

Hi Sarah -
I started Mist - but it's one of those books for me that I know I am not going to enjoy. There's too much thrown at the reader in the first two chapters. It feels like complicated epic fantasy disguised as urban fantasy. But I will give it another go just to be sure.

I do recommend Glitter & Mayhem though (from the first 5 stories.) It's really fun especially if you like the 70's and so far most of the stories are LGBT which is also unusual.

Shellie Nunn said...

Hi Edi -
I just read your review. Comprehensive as usual. Thank you for the link.

I would like a recommendation from you.

John is going to give one story a try on my nook. He's never read anything on an ereader before so I want to make sure he likes it.

Which story from the collection would you recommend he read?

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