Daniel Abraham, The Spider’s War
(Orbit Mar 2016)

The fifth and final book in the Dagger and the Coin series finds war spilling out across the world as nations fall to the mad priesthood, while in Carse a small group works to bring peace to the world with the help of traitors, the last dragon, and a revolutionary financial scheme. ‘‘The resolution of the series is quite satisfying… when I closed the book, I felt like I was saying goodbye to old friends.’’ [Tim Pratt]





Marie Brennan, In the Labyrinth of Drakes
(Tor Apr 2016)

The fourth Memoir by Lady Trent involves elements from tales of 19th-century explorers and archaeologists in the Middle East, mixing science and fantasy as Lady Trent continues in her efforts to breed dragons. ‘‘Once again, the work is a delight. Its most appealing aspect isn’t the genre-bending riffs on genuine events so much as the level-headed outlook that people like Lady Trent bring to both fantasy and romance.’’ [Faren Miller]





Zachary Brown, Titan’s Fall
(Simon & Schuster/Saga Press Mar 2016)

In this second book of The Icarus Corps series, the war between alien powers has moved to heavily fortified Titan, where soldiers from Earth fight for the Ac­cordance against the Conglomeration. ‘‘The novel’s title telegraphs the arc of the story, so it’s no spoiler to reveal that in addition to the expected scenes of combat on Titan’s exotic surface and in the tunnels of Accordance installations, loyalties are betrayed, coats are turned, mutinies raised and quelled, and lines – of battle and internal alliance – are drawn and redrawn.’’ [Russell Letson]





Stephanie Burgis, Masks and Shadows
(Pyr Apr 2016)

This historical fantasy, Burgis’s first adult novel, takes place in 1779 at Eszterháza Palace, where the renowned castrato singer, Carlo Morelli, has been invited as a guest – but other guests include spies, a notorious alchemist, and Charlotte von Steinbeck, the very proper sister of Prince Nikolaus’s mistress. Carlo and Charlotte team up to prevent a plot to assassinate the Habsburg Emperor and Empress in this lively, musical, and magical tale.





M. R. Carey, Fellside
(Orbit Apr 2016)

Jess Moulson, stuck in the maximum-security prison Fellside, possibly for life, starts hearing whispers in the walls, one with a message for her. An atmospheric and haunting tale.





James Gunn, Transgalactic
(Tor Mar 2016)

Gunn extends his exploration of classic SF tropes and pulp-style storytelling in this sequel to Transcendental, as Riley and Asha are teleported to separate locations by the Transcendental Machine, and struggle to get back home, in a tale with echoes of such writers as Olaf Stapledon, Jack Williamson, H.G. Wells, and Arthur C. Clarke. ‘‘I’m not sure that this kind of literary-historical backward glance is going to appeal to readers whose history does not extend to those sto­ries – but I think there’s plenty of life in the old stuff yet.’’ [Russell Letson]





Sandra Kasturi & Jerome Stueart, ed., Imaginarium 4: The Best Canadian Speculative Writing
(ChiZine Publications Sep 2015)

A solid selection of 31 stories and 15 poems showcases the best Canadian Speculative Writing of 2014. Authors include Kelley Armstrong, Nalo Hopkinson, Matthew Hughes, Gemma Files, Cory Doctorow, and Peter Watts.





Mary Robinette Kowal, Forest of Memory
(Tor.com Mar 2016)

In a future where human memories take second place to machines that record events, collectors want objects and recordings that can be authenticated. Katya is a dealer in Authenticities and Captures, but here tells a strange tale – without her cameras and other equip­ment – about getting captured herself by a strange man shooting deer. An intriguing look at the meaning and worth of memory.





Ken Liu, The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories
(Simon & Schuster/Saga Press Mar 2016)

A carefully selected collection of 15 stories – one original – including numerous award nominees, the title story alone a winner of the Nebula, Hugo, and World Fantasy Awards. ‘‘There’s a good deal of regret, sadness, and alienation in these tales, but it’s consistently the dignity – or efforts at dignity – of Liu’s characters that serve as the real engine of the often brilliant tales they inhabit.’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]





Jonathan Oliver & David Thomas Moore, eds., Monstrous Little Voices: New Tales from Shakespeare’s Fantasy World
(Abaddon Mar 2016)

The worlds and characters from Shakespeare’s plays get re-done in these five original tales by Johathan Barnes, Adrian Tchaikovsky, Emma Newman, Kate Heartfield, and Foz Meadows.





K. J. Parker, The Devil You Know
(Tor.com Mar 2016)

Parker presents his own take on the story of Faust with this tale of the philosopher/alchemist Saloninus, who makes a deal with a mid-level demon, trading his soul in exchange for 20 years of youth and health, with the demon as his servant. The demon, naturally, spends a lot of time trying to figure out Saloninus’s game. ‘‘It’s an accomplished performance of a familiar scenario, and has the added advantage of filling in yet another detail in Parker’s emerging tapestry of an alternate Europe that persistently seems to land somewhere between Renaissance Italy and the Marx Brothers’ Fredonia.’’ [Gary K. Wolfe]





Philip Reeve, Railhead
(Switch Press Apr 2016)

Sentient trains travel through gateways to any place in the galaxy in this exciting YA adventure. Petty thief and railhead Zen Starling takes a job stealing one small box from the Emperor’s train, but the job isn’t as simple as he thought. Originally published in the UK by Oxford University Press (10/15).





Brian Staveley, The Last Mortal Bond
(Tor Mar 2016)

The Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne trilogy wraps up with this volume, which finds war spreading through the An­nurian Empire – and three Imperial siblings who have come to realize that even if the throne is recovered, they may never agree on how the lands should be ruled. A powerful, epic, and grim fantasy.


 


 

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