New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for November

From this month’s selection from the new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels, Malka Older’s debut novel set in the not too distant future, titled Infomocracy comes highly recommend. Also included is the latest work from Wesley Chu and Eric Flint, along with many other great writers, all giving wonderful plot and character diversity to this genre.

Syndetics book coverNinth City burning / J. Patrick Black.
“Generations after Earth has been attacked by an unknown alien force, the world is a different place. Most cities were instantly destroyed by the invaders using an element known as “thelemity,” and human survival depends on a few who can wield this power as well. In the intervening centuries, those who use thelemity are sought and put into military service. But while the surviving cities lead the ongoing war efforts, the rural settlements resent being employed as a supply source of resources and soldiers. Two young sisters from the unincorporated wild country are dragged into the conflict.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverZero-G / Rob Boffard.
“Former space station courier Riley Hale is once again caught up in deadly plots complicated by competing loyalties. Six months after Riley saved the Outer Earth space station, the last refuge of humankind after eco-collapse on Earth, she’s now employed as a “stomper,” part of local law enforcement. But her past has made her a target for vigilante Morgan Knox, who wants Riley’s help in taking his revenge on jailed terrorist leader Janice Okwembu. To force Riley to help him, Knox has surgically implanted explosive charges in Riley’s knees. To complicate matters, a deadly virus is sweeping across the station. When Knox falls ill, Riley must find a cure to save herself as well as the rest of the station.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverA shadow all of light / Fred Chappell.
“Falco is the apprentice to Maestro Astolfo in the shadow trade in the Italianate fantasy city of Tardocco. Here, shadows are stolen, bought, and sold, and a person can surrender their shadow and don a different one for a special purpose. Astolfo is a master of the business, equal parts thief, scholar, magician, and detective, and under his tutelage and that of his henchman, Mutano, Falco grows from “a bumpkin, trying on the airs of a town bravo” to a shadow adept over the course of a series of episodic adventures.” (Adapted from Syndetic sunmmary)

Syndetics book coverThe rise of Io / Wesley Chu.
“The Prophus and the Genjix, two aspects of a stranded alien species, have secretly been guiding human evolution since the beginning and are now fighting a war intended to raise humans to the level where they can create the technological necessary to return the aliens to their home world. The aliens, who are immaterial and ride their human vessels, have instigated many of humans’ greatest triumphs and horrors. Now Io, a perennial incompetent, has chosen Ella to make her play for greatness, but Ella has her own agenda.” (Adapted from Syndetic summary)

Syndetics book coverCastaway odyssey / Eric Flint, Ryk E. Spoor.
“Sergeant Samuel Morgan Campbell had been in plenty of tight spots before, but nothing like this. It had happened in a few terrifying seconds: the starship he and his crew travelled on, the Outward Initiative, shattered to pieces before their eyes and disappeared, leaving them stranded in the endless night of deep space on Lifeboat LS-88 all systems dead, light-years from any known colony. Somehow, Sergeant Campbell and his crew of half-trained children ranging from freshly graduated Xander Bird down to eight-year-old Francisco have to repair systems with no tools, navigate with no computers, and if they could find a planet they could live on land a shuttle whose controls were more than half-destroyed. And if they manage all of that, then the real challenge begins; the only planet in range has secrets that even Sergeant Campbell cannot imagine.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe obelisk gate / N.K. Jemisin.
“In the world called the Stillness-which the first book hints may actually be our world, thousands of years in the future-orogenes are hated and feared for their ability to control the geological forces that shape the land. Powerful orogene Essun desperately searches for her eight-year-old daughter, Nassun, who was stolen away by her father. He hopes to find someone to “fix” the girl and excise her burgeoning orogene talent. But Essun’s search is interrupted by her old mentor, Alabaster. Alabaster is dying, and he hopes to use Essun’s powers to end the current “season,” a disastrous change in global climate that could destroy all life, by recapturing the planet’s long-lost moon, whose absence is the cause of the ironically named Stillness’s geological instability.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGhost talkers / Mary Robinette Kowal.
“In the summer of 1916, American heiress Ginger Stuyvesant is engaged to British intelligence officer Benjamin Hartshorne and working in France as a medium in the top secret Spirit Corps, a force that gathers intelligence from fallen soldiers at the moment of death. It is grisly, exhausting work that puts the souls of the mediums in danger of becoming permanently separated from their physical forms, and it is made more dangerous by the discovery that the German army is not only aware of the Spirit Corps but has a double agent assisting them. When Ben is murdered, it falls to Ginger to help him move on by finding his killer and discovering the traitor in the corps while keeping her soul intact.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSleeping giants / Sylvain Neuvel.Sleeping Giants
“When Dr. Rose Franklin was a little girl, she made a startling discovery in the woods near her home: the gigantic hand of a robot that appeared to be of alien manufacture. Now that she has grown up and become a prominent scientist, she has, perhaps by coincidence, been put in charge of secretly recovering other parts of the robot, which have apparently been hidden around the world for thousands of years, and returning the behemoth to working order. When the robot’s human pilots accidentally blow a hole in Denver, Colo., thus revealing the machine’s existence, other nations demand access and tensions mount.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverInfomocracy / Malka Older.
“In the (slightly implausible) future, most of the world is part of a massive democracy divided into “centenals” of 100,000 people. Governments are global and overlapping, and each centenal decides which government to belong to. A worldwide organization known as Information manages elections and attempts to keep governments’ campaign promises in check; the governments themselves range from corporate ones such as PhilipMorris to more traditional ones with names like Liberty and Policy1st. Ken, a Brazilian of Japanese descent who works for the Policy1st government, is attempting to research non-Policy1st centenals that might be willing to change governments in the upcoming election. After he learns of a potential conspiracy involving the election, he ends up working with (and falling for) Information agent Mishima.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe high ground / Melinda Snodgrass.
“A future interstellar empire is the setting of this military space opera, told from the perspective of two misfits in the prestigious military academy known as the High Ground. One is Thracius “Tracy” Belmanor, a tailor’s son and scholarship student treated with contempt by the sons of the nobility around him; the other is Mercedes de Arango, the first woman to attend the High Ground, from which she must graduate to succeed her father, the emperor of the Solar League. As Tracy and Mercedes struggle with classism, sexism, and the weight of familial expectations and dreams, alien and human conspiracies threaten to undermine Mercedes’s future and that of the empire itself.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for October

This month’s selection from our recently received new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels includes four alternative histories, set in Paris, Central Africa, Japan and San Francisco. There are also novels about zombies, space warfare, interplanetary voyages, robots and survival.

Syndetics book coverObelisk / Stephen Baxter.
“This collection contains stories set in the worlds of the bestselling duology ULTIMA and PROXIMA, which expand on the characters and worlds of that series, including two brand new short stories. There is also a selection of alternate histories and possible futures, building on Baxter’s work with Terry Pratchett on the LONG EARTH series.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverImpact / Rob Boffard.
“This is the concluding volume in the Outer Earth Trilogy. A signal has been picked up from Earth, although the planet was supposed to be uninhabitable. But it seems there are survivors down there, with supplies, shelter and running water. Perhaps there could be a future for humanity on Earth after all. Riley Hale will find out soon enough. She’s stuck on a spaceship with the group of terrorists that is planning to brave the planet’s atmosphere and crash-land on the surface. But when the re-entry goes wrong, Riley ends up hundreds of miles from her companions Prakesh and Carver, alone in a barren wilderness. She’ll have to use everything she knows to survive. And all of them are about to find out that nothing on Earth is what it seems.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBreath of earth / Beth Cato.
“In an alternate 1906, the United States and Japan have forged a powerful confederation, the Unified Pacific, in an attempt to dominate the world. Their first target is a vulnerable China. In San Francisco, headstrong secretary Ingrid Carmichael is assisting a group of powerful geomancer wardens who have no idea of the depth of her own talent, or that she is the only woman to possess such skills. When assassins kill the wardens, Ingrid and her mentor are protected by her incredible magic. But the pair is far from safe. Without its full force of guardian geomancers, the city is on the brink of a cataclysmic earthquake that will expose the earth’s power to masterminds determined to control the energy for their own dark ends.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe span of empire / Eric Flint, David Carrico ; with K.D. Wentworth.
“A new novel in the Jao Empire series. It has become clear to both the Jao and their human and Lleix partners that if they are going to defeat the Ekhat who have been terrorizing the galaxy for eons, they need more allies. To that end, Preceptor Ronz, guardian of Earth and greatest living strategist of the Jao, has harnessed the energy of Earth’s humans to create and send out an exploration fleet under the command of Caitlin Kralik. But after a long search, all the expedition has found are dead worlds and now-extinct intelligent species slaughtered by the genocidal Ekhat. Do they continue to search down the galactic arm in which Earth and the Jao worlds lie, or do they make an astounding leap in another direction?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe emperor’s railroad / Guy Haley.
“Global war devastated the environment, a zombie-like plague wiped out much of humanity, and civilization as we once understood it came to a standstill. But that was a thousand years ago, and the world is now a very different place.Conflict between city states is constant, superstition is rife, and machine relics, mutant creatures and resurrected prehistoric beasts trouble the land. Watching over all are the silent Dreaming Cities, homes of the angels, bastion outposts of heaven on Earth. Or so the church claims. Very few go in, and nobody ever comes out.” (Adapted from Synedetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe ghoul king / Guy Haley.
“The Knight, Quinn, is down on his luck, and he travels to the very edge of the civilized world, whatever that means any more, to restock his small but essential inventory. After fighting a series of gladiatorial bouts against the dead, he finds himself in the employ of a woman on a quest to find the secret to repairing her semi-functional robot. But the technological secret it guards may be one truth too many.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary

Syndetics book coverLord of the Darkwood / Lian Hearn.
“Shikanoko, at what should be a warrior’s hour of greatest triumph, turns his back on those around him, in mourning for a secret love. The Spider Tribe, spurned by their guardian, explore the extent of their powers and ruthless ambitions. Hina, who alone knows the whereabouts of the true emperor, has to forge a new identity of her own. No one must ever know that she is Kiyoyori’s daughter. As the traditional powers navigate weakness and disarray, old spirits and new figures enter the epic battle for the Lotus Throne.”(Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDeep time / Anthony Nanson.
“Zoologist Dr Brendan Merlie has wasted his best years in futile pursuit of imaginary creatures. He’s now leading a survey of an ecological hotspot in a forgotten corner of Central Africa. Guided by the enigmatic Salome Boann, a woman strangely at ease in the rainforest, with her own reasons for being there, the team discovers a ‘refugium’ of prehistoric plant-life. Among the forest people they hear rumours of animals, too, unknown to science. Driven by civil war, and their own competing desires, Brendan and his companions enter a shifting world in which they must come to terms with the wildness within as well as the wildness around them. The deeper they travel, the more is revealed, beyond Brendan’s wildest dreams.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe long cosmos / Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter.
“2070-71. Nearly six decades after Step Day and in the Long Earth, the new Next post-human society continues to evolve. For Joshua Valienté, now in his late sixties, it is time to take one last solo journey into the High Meggers: an adventure that turns into a disaster. Alone and facing death, his only hope of salvation lies with a group of trolls. But as Joshua confronts his mortality, the Long Earth receives a signal from the stars, a signal that is picked up by radio astronomers but also in more abstract ways by the trolls and by the Great Traversers. Its message is simple but its implications are enormous.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels

As to be expected with this genre, the selected titles from the recently received Science Fiction and Fantasy additions to our collection contain a weird and wonderful range of characters. From angels to monsters, aliens to dragons, robots to ex-convicts, shapeshifters to hunters, all contained in the narratives of these novels, they will provide many hours of pure escapism.

Syndetics book coverThe Swarm / Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston.
“Earth survived the attack of the first Formic scoutship. But can the heroes of that first invasion save humanity from the full fleet that’s on its way? The Swarm picks up a few years after the conclusion of the First Formic War series. Earth has begun preparing a desperate defense. The Hegemon, Polemarch, and Strategos are in place, and the newly minted International Fleet is working with corporate forces to build an armada and weapons as fast as possible. Will it be enough? And can humanity overcome the dangers posed by political machinations, careerism, international squabbles, and petty bureaucracy?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTime siege / Wesley Chu.
“A sequel to Time Salvager, a futuristic saga that pits fugitive time traveler James Griffin-Mars and his allies, who seek to rescue a ravaged Earth from utter destruction, against Valta, the megacorporation that rules the galaxies. While James and Grace Priestly, the Mother of Time, embark on an interplanetary search for a cure for James’s unwell sister, Sasha, scientist Elise Kim and the Elfreth tribe seek refuge from Valta’s ruthless Senior Securitate Kuo on “the dreaded Mist Isle,” formerly Manhattan.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGrunge / Larry Correia & John Ringo.
“When Marine Private Oliver Chadwick Gardenier is killed in the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut, somebody who might be Saint Peter gives him a choice: Go to Heaven or return to Earth. The Boss has a mission for him. He’s a Marine: he chooses the mission. Eventually, it appears that God’s will is for Chad to join a group called “Monster Hunters International” and protect people from things that go bump in the night. From there, everything tends to go downhill.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDark matter : a novel / by Blake Crouch.Dark Matter
“Brilliant scientist Jason Dessen was on the verge of a major breakthrough when his life took a different turn instead of completing his work on quantum superposition, he married his pregnant girlfriend and now lives a relatively happy life as husband to the gorgeous Daniela, father to teenage Charlie, and professor of undergrad physics at a small Chicago-area college. All is well if not very exciting until the night he is abducted and bludgeoned, and wakes up in a different time and place or, perhaps, it’s a different plane. It appears there is another world, one where Jason didn’t marry Daniela but went on to create a box that can transport someone into a parallel universe.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe sea without a shore / David Drake.
“Cinnabar’s chief spymaster is a mother also, and her son is determined to search for treasure in the midst of a civil war. Who better to watch over him then Captain Daniel Leary, Cinnabar’s troubleshooter, and his friend cyberspy Adele Mundy? The only thing certain in the struggle of the mining planet Corcyra is that the rival parties are more dangerous to their own allies than to their opponents. Daniel and Adele face kidnappers, hijackers, pirates and a death squad, even before they can get to their real business of ending the war and escorting the boy on his mission.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe perdition score : a Sandman Slim novel / Richard Kadrey.
“James Stark (aka Sandman Slim) is living the closest thing he can to a normal life: he works for the Sub Rosa, and he has a girlfriend and a social life (well, he’s part of an underground fight club). Then a dying angel gives him a vial of mysterious black milk and another angel tries to kill him for it. The Wormwood Corporation is up to no good, a kid goes missing, and too many coincidences start to pile up. His friends are in danger, Heaven is in revolt, and everyone’s soul hangs in the balance. Now Stark needs to find a way to get back to Hell.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDragonmark / Sherrilyn Kenyon.
“Centuries ago, Illarion was betrayed, a dragon made human against his will, then forced to serve humanity as a dragonmount in their army, and to fight for them in barbaric wars, even while he hated everything about them. Enslaved and separated from everyone he knew and from his own dragon brothers, he was forced into exile in a fey realm where he lost the only thing he ever really loved. Now he has a chance to regain what’s been lost, to have the one thing he covets most. But only if he gives up his brothers and forsakes the oaths he holds most dear. Yet what terrifies him most isn’t the cost his happiness might incur, it’s the fact that there is just enough human in his dragon’s heart that he might actually be willing to pay it and betray everything and everyone, to see the entire world burn in Dragonmark.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAlliance of equals : a new Liaden Universe novel / Sharon Lee, Steve Miller.
“The 19th installment of the long-running Liaden Universe space adventure series The members of Clan Korval and their allies still trying to solidify their economic position and regain their strength following their exile from their home planet. With the insidious Department of the Interior manipulating their public image and outright attacking their ships, the clan is hard-pressed to maintain and expand its trade routes. Meanwhile, Clan Korval member Padi yos’Galen is starting to manifest a power that could destroy her, and AI experts Tolly Jones and Hazenthull are dispatched to mentor a newborn computer intelligence, with orders to save or destroy it as necessary.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDissidence / Ken MacLeod.
“Carlos is dead. A soldier who died for his ideals a thousand years ago, he’s been reincarnated and conscripted to fight an A.I. revolution in deep space. And he’s not sure he’s fighting for the right side. Seba is alive. By a fluke of nature, a contractual overlap and a loop in its subroutines, this lunar mining robot has gained sentience. Gathering with other ‘freebots’, Seba is taking a stand against the corporations that want it and its kind gone. As their stories converge against a backdrop of warring companies and interstellar drone combat, Carlos and Seba must either find a way to rise above the games their masters are playing, or die, and even dying will not be the end of it.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverLegion / Jamie Sawyer.
“Conrad Harris is the legend known as Lazarus. Using simulant bodies, he runs suicide missions in the depths of space. But he always comes back. Having survived their last ordeal on Helios, Conrad and his Lazarus Legion are sent to recover an artefact that could help humanity win their brutal war against the alien Krell. What they discover is beyond their worst nightmares.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for August

Two alternative history narratives are included in this month’s selection of new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels. One is a debut novel by Nina Allan, who is joined in this selection by four other debut novelists. Another debut novelist is Curtis C. Chen whose novel, a satirical outer space thriller, titled Waypoint Kangaroo comes highly recommended.

Syndetics book coverThe race / Nina Allan.
“In a future scarred by fracking and ecological collapse, Jenna Hoolman’s world is dominated by illegal smartdog racing: greyhounds genetically modified with human DNA. When her young niece goes missing that world implodes. Christy’s life is dominated by fear of her brother, a man she knows capable of monstrous acts and suspects of hiding even darker ones. Desperate to learn the truth she contacts Alex, who has his own demons to fight and Maree, a young woman undertaking a journey that will change her world forever.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWar factory / Neal Asher.
“The second book in the Transformation series. Thorvald Spear, resurrected from his death over a hundred years earlier, continues to hunt Penny Royal, the rogue AI and dangerous war criminal on the run from Polity forces. Beyond the Graveyard, a lawless and deadly area in deep space, Spear follows the trail of several enemy Prador, the crab-like alien species with a violent history of conflict with humanity. Blite, captain of a bounty hunting ship, hands over two prisoners and valuable memplants from Penny Royal to the Brockle, a dangerous forensics entity under strict confinement on a Polity spaceship that quickly takes a keen interest in the corrupted AI and its unclear motives. (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe book of Esther : a novel / Emily Barton.The Book of Esther: A Novel
“Eastern Europe, August 1942. The Khazar kaganate, an isolated nation of Turkic warrior Jews, lies between the Pontus Euxinus (the Black Sea) and the Khazar Sea (the Caspian). It also happens to lie between a belligerent nation to the west that the Khazars call Germania–and a city the rest of the world calls Stalingrad. Only Esther, the daughter of the nation’s chief policy adviser, sees the ominous implications of Germania’s disregard for Jewish lives. Only she realizes that this isn’t just another war but an existential threat. After witnessing the enemy warplanes’ first foray into sovereign Khazar territory, Esther knows she must fight for her country.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTracer / Rob Boffard.
“A huge space station orbits the Earth, holding the last of humanity. It’s broken, rusted, falling apart dirty, overcrowded and inescapable. What’s more, there’s a madman hiding on the station. He’s about to unleash chaos. And when he does, there’ll be nowhere left to run.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWaypoint Kangaroo / Curtis C. Chen.
“Kangaroo isn’t your typical spy. Sure, he has extensive agency training, access to bleeding-edge technology, and a ready supply of clever (to him) quips and retorts. But what sets him apart is “the pocket.” It’s a portal that opens into an empty, seemingly infinite, parallel universe, and Kangaroo is the only person in the world who can use it. But he’s pretty sure the agency only keeps him around to exploit his superpower. After he bungles yet another mission, Kangaroo gets sent away on a mandatory “vacation:” an interplanetary cruise to Mars. While he tries to make the most of his exile, two passengers are found dead, and Kangaroo has to risk blowing his cover. It turns out he isn’t the only spy on the ship-and he’s just starting to unravel a massive conspiracy which threatens the entire Solar System.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAdmiral / Sean Danker.Admiral
“He is the last to wake. The label on his sleeper pad identifies him as an admiral of the Evagardian Empir, a surprise as much to him as to the three recent recruits now under his command. He wears no uniform, and he is ignorant of military protocol, but the ship’s records confirm he is their superior officer. Whether he is an Evagardian admiral or a spy will be of little consequence if the crew members all end up dead. They are marooned on a strange world, their ship’s systems are failing one by one, and they are not alone.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe seascape tattoo / Larry Niven and Steven Barnes.
“Aros of Azteca and Neoloth-Pteor are the deadliest of enemies: Swordsman and Sorcerer, locked in mortal combat, who have tried to kill each other more times than either can count. But when the princess Neoloth loves is kidnapped, there is only one plan that offers any hope of rescueand that requires passing off the barbarian Aros as a lost princeling and infiltrating the deadliest cabal of necromancers the world has ever seen. They cannot trust each other. They will betray or kill each other the first chance they get. But they’re all each other has.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverToo like the lightning / by Ada Palmer.
“Mycroft Canner is a convict. For his crimes he is required, as is the custom of the 25th century, to wander the world being as useful as he can to all he meets. Carlyle Foster is a sensayer in a world that has outlawed the public practice of religion, but which also knows that the inner lives of humans cannot be wished away. The world into which Mycroft and Carlyle have been born is a hard-won utopia built on technologically-generated abundance, and also on complex and mandatory systems of labelling all public writing and speech. What seem to us normal gender distinctions are now distinctly taboo in most social situations. And most of the world’s population is affiliated with globe-girdling clans of the like-minded, whose endless economic and cultural completion is carefully managed by central planners of inestimable subtlety. And in this world, Mycroft and Carlyle have stumbled on the wild card that may destabilize the system: the boy Bridger, who can effortlessly make his wishes come true. Who can, it would seem, bring inanimate objects to life.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe raft / Fred Strydom.
“The day every person on earth lost his and her memory was not a day at all. In people’s minds there was no actual event and thus it could be followed by no period of shock or mourning. There could be no catharsis. Everyone was simply reset to zero.” On Day Zero, the collapse of civilization was as instantaneous as it was inevitable. A mysterious and oppressive movement rose to power in the aftermath, forcing people into isolated communes run like regimes. Kayle Jenner finds himself trapped on a remote beach, and all that remains of his life before is the vague and haunting vision of his son. Kayle finally escapes, only to find a broken world being put back together in strange ways. In his relentless search for his son, Kayle will discover more than just his lost past, he will discover the truth behind Day Zero, a truth that makes both fools and gods of men.’ (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAge of myth / Michael J. Sullivan.
“This is the first in a proposed five book series five-book series. Since time immemorial, humans have worshipped the gods they call Fhrey, truly a race apart: invincible in battle, masters of magic, and seemingly immortal. But when a god falls to a human blade, the balance of power between humans and those they thought were gods changes forever. Now only a few stand between humankind and annihilation: Raithe, reluctant to embrace his destiny as the God Killer; Suri, a young seer burdened by signs of impending doom; and Persephone, who must overcome personal tragedy to lead her people. The Age of Myth is over. The time of rebellion has begun.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

The best of the best: must reads from recent fiction selections

The following titles have been chosen from our monthly new fiction selections. They are all highly recommended for great reading.

Syndetics book coverCompany Town / Madeline Ashby.
“A brilliantly twisted science fiction mystery.”

Syndetics book coverWaking lions / Ayelet Gundar-Goshen ; translated from the Hebrew by Sondra Silverston.
“A thrilling novel from an award winning author that explores the boundaries between love and hate, guilt and forgiveness, good and evil.”

Syndetics book coverReader, I married him : stories inspired by Jane Eyre / edited by Tracy Chevalier.
“Twenty one short stories celebrating Charlotte Bronte, published in the year of her bicentenary and stemming from the now immortal words from her great work Jane Eyre. The stories are by many much acclaimed authors, original and very entertaining.”

Syndetics book coverThe crow girl / Erik Axl Sund ; translated by Neil Smith.The Crow Girl
“Another international sensation, this new Scandinavian murder mystery will not disappoint.”

Syndetics book coverGahan Wilson’s Out there / editor, Gary Groth.
“The joy of the science fiction and fantasy cartoons and writing of Gahan Wilson, guaranteed to make you laugh.”

New Science Fiction and Fantasy for July

The selected new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels, recently received into Wellington City Libraries collection this month, bring an imaginative array of theme, character, and situation, giving avid fans of this genre hours of reading pleasure. Highly recommended is Benjamin Warner’s survivalist novel titled, Thirst.

Syndetics book coverCompany Town / Madeline Ashby.
“New Arcadia is a city-sized oil rig off the coast of the Canadian Maritimes, now owned by one very wealthy, powerful, byzantine family: Lynch Ltd. Hwa is of the few people in her community (which constitutes the whole rig) to forgo bio-engineered enhancements. Still, her expertise in the arts of self-defense and her record as a fighter mean that her services are yet in high demand. When the youngest Lynch needs training and protection, the family turns to Hwa. But can even she protect against increasingly intense death threats seemingly coming from another timeline?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe sorcerer’s daughter : the defenders of Shannara / Terry Brooks.
“The mysterious, magic-wielding Druid order has existed for long ages, battling any evil that threatens the Four Lands and struggling to be understood and accepted by outsiders. But their hopes of building goodwill are dashed when a demon’s murderous rampage at a peace summit leaves their political opponents’ dead, casting new suspicions upon the Druids and forcing them to flee from enemies both mortal and monstrous. Paxon Leah, the order’s appointed protector, knows that blame lies with Arcannen Rai, the vile sorcerer he has battled and defeated before. But there’s no time to hunt his nemesis, if he is to lead the wrongfully accused Druids to their sanctuary.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverChildren of earth and sky / Guy Gavriel Kay.
“From the small coastal town of Senjan, notorious for its pirates, a young woman sets out to find vengeance for her lost family. From the wealthy city-state of Seressa, come two very different people: a young artist traveling east to paint the grand khalif at his request, and a fiercely intelligent, angry woman, sent by Seressa as a spy. The trading ship that carries them is commanded by the accomplished younger son of a merchant family, ambivalent about the life he’s been born to live. And farther east a boy trains to become a soldier in the elite infantry of the khalif. As these lives entwine, their fates, and those of many others, will hang in the balance, when the khalif sends out his massive army to take the great fortress that is the gateway to the western world.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverForest of memory / Mary Robinette Kowal.
“Katya deals in Authenticities and Captures, trading on nostalgia for a past long gone. Her clients are rich and they demand items and experiences with only the finest verifiable provenance. Other people’s lives have value, after all. But when her A.I. suddenly stops whispering in her ear she finds herself cut off from the grid and loses communication with the rest of the world. The man who stepped out of the trees while hunting deer cut her off from the cloud, took her A.I. and made her his unwilling guest. There are no Authenticities or Captures to prove Katya’s story of what happened in the forest. You’ll just have to believe her.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBattlestorm / Susan Krinard.
“Centuries ago, the Norse gods and goddesses fought their Last Battle with the trickster god Loki and his frost giants. All were believed lost, except for a few survivors, including the Valkyrie Mist, forgotten daughter of the goddess Freya. But the battle isn’t over, and Mist, living a mortal life in San Francisco, is at the center of a new war, with the fate of the Earth hanging in the balance. As old enemies and allies reappear around the city, Mist must determine who to trust, while learning to control her own growing power.It will take all of Mist’s courage, determination, and newfound magical abilities to stop Loki before history repeats itself.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe seer / Sonia Orin Lyris.
“The Arunkel Empire has stood a thousand years, forged by wealth and conquest, but now rebellion is stirring on the borders and treachery brews in the palace halls. In a remote mountain village, a young mother sells sister Amarta’s prophecies, in order to keep them and her infant child from starving. Such revelations draw suspicion and mistrust as often as they earn coin. Yet Amarta’s visions are true. Now in a tapestry of loyalty, intrigue, magic, and gold, Amarta has become the key to a ruler’s ambitions. But is she nothing beyond a tool? As Amarta comes into her own as a seer, she realizes she must do more than predict the future. She must create it.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe summer dragon / Todd Lockwood.
“Maia and her family raise dragons for the political war machine. As she comes of age, she hopes for a dragon of her own to add to the stable of breeding parents. But the war goes badly, and the needs of the Dragonry dash her hopes. Her peaceful life is shattered when the Summer Dragon, one of the rare and mythical High Dragons, makes an appearance in her quiet valley. The Summer Dragon is an omen of change, but no one knows for certain what kind of change he augurs. So Maia is swept into an adventure that pits her against the deathless Horrors, thralls of the enemy, and a faceless creature drawn from her fears.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe blood red city / Justin Richards.
“The alien Vril are waking, and the Never War is heating up. Colonel Brinkman and his team at Station Z desperately need answers; they have to discover exactly what they are facing and how the attack will come. But the information doesn’t come easily. With a major Vril offensive imminent, the Nazis step up their own project to exploit Vril weapons and technology. Major Guy Pentecross must travel to the ruined deathtrap of the most dangerous city in the world to track down the one man who can help. This the second book of the Never War series continues a secret history of the Second World War in which humanity itself is fighting for survival.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCentral Station / Lavie Tidhar.
“A worldwide diaspora has left a quarter of a million people at the foot of a space station. Life is cheap, and data is cheaper. When Boris Chong returns to Tel Aviv from Mars, much has changed. Boris’s ex-lover is raising a strangely familiar child who can tap into the data stream of a mind. His cousin is infatuated with a robotnik, a damaged cyborg soldier. His father is terminally-ill with a multigenerational mind-plague. And a hunted data-vampire has followed Boris to where she is forbidden to return. Rising above them is Central Station, the interplanetary hub between all things. Everything is connected by the Others, powerful alien entities who, through the Conversation, a shifting, flowing stream of consciousness, are just the beginning of irrevocable change.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThirst : a novel / Benjamin Warner.
“On a searing summer Friday, Eddie Chapman has been stuck for hours in a traffic jam. There are accidents along the highway, but ambulances and police are conspicuously absent. When he decides to abandon his car and run home, he sees that the trees along the edge of a stream have been burnt, and the water in the streambed is gone. Something is very wrong. Eddie and his wife, Laura, find themselves thrust together with their neighbors while a sense of unease thickens in the stifling night air. Thirst takes place in the immediate aftermath of a mysterious disaster, the Chapmans and their neighbors suffer the effects of the heat, their thirst, and the terrifying realization that no one is coming to help.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for June

All the new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels in this month’s selection showcase the brilliant imagination of each author. The reader will be transported to new worlds, populated by a wide range of diverse characters, placed in the most amazing situations. Barren Cove: a novel by Ariel S. Winter is classified as futuristic, but is recommend as being something slightly different.

Syndetics book coverThe cold between / Elizabeth Bonesteel.
“When her crewmate, Danny, is murdered on the colony of Volhynia, Central Corps chief engineer, Commander Elena Shaw, is shocked to learn the main suspect is her lover, Treiko Zajec. She knows Trey is innocent; he was with her when Danny was killed. So who is the real killer and why are the cops framing an innocent man? Retracing Danny’s last hours, they discover that his death may be tied to a mystery from the past: the explosion of a Central Corps starship at a wormhole near Volhynia. With the authorities closing in, Elena and Trey head to the wormhole, certain they’ll find answers on the other side.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTransgalactic / James Gunn.
“When Riley and Asha finally reached the planet Terminal and found the Transcendental Machine, a matter transmission device built by an ancient race, they chose to be “translated.” Now in possession of intellectual and physical powers that set them above human limitations, the machine has transported them to two, separate, unknown planets among a possibility of billions. Riley and Asha know that together they can change the galaxy, so they attempt to do the impossible, find each other.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe map of bones / Francesca Haig
“Four hundred years in the future, the Earth has turned primitive following a nuclear fire that has laid waste to civilization and nature. Though the radiation fallout has ended, for some unknowable reason every person is born with a twin. Of each pair, one is an Alpha, physically perfect in every way; and the other an Omega, burdened with deformity, small or large. With the Council ruling an apartheid-like society, Omegas are branded and ostracized while the Alphas have gathered the world’s sparse resources for themselves. Though proclaiming their superiority, for all their effort, Alphas cannot escape one harsh fact: whenever one twin dies so does the other.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe everything box / Richard Kadrey.
“A thief named Coop, a specialist in purloining magic objects, steals and delivers a small box to the mysterious client who engaged his services. Coop doesn’t know that his latest job could be the end of him and the rest of the world. Suddenly he finds himself in the company of The Department of Peculiar Science, a fearsome enforcement agency that polices the odd and strange. The box isn’t just a supernatural heirloom with quaint powers, they tell him. It’s a doomsday device. And suddenly, everyone is out to get it.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBlack City saint / by Richard A. Knaak.
“For more than sixteen hundred years, Nick Medea has followed and guarded the Gate that keeps the mortal realm and that of Feirie separate, seeking in vain absolution for the fatal errors he made when he slew the dragon. Yet in the fifty years since the Night the Dragon Breathed over the city of Chicago, the Gate has not only remained fixed, but open to the trespasses of the Wyld, the darkest of the Feiriefolk. Not only does that mean an evil resurrected from Nick’s own past, but the reincarnation of his lost Cleolinda, a reincarnation destined once more to die. He must turn to the monster residing in him, now a part of him, but ever seeking escape.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverArtefact / Jamie Sawyer.
“Mankind has spread to the stars, only to become locked in warfare with an insidious alien race. All that stands against the alien menace are the soldiers of the Simulant Operation Programme, an elite military team remotely operating avatars in the most dangerous theatres of war. Captain Conrad Harris has died hundreds of times, running suicide missions in simulant bodies. Known as Lazarus, he is a man addicted to death. So when a secret research station deep in alien territory suddenly goes dark, there is no other man who could possibly lead a rescue mission. But Harris hasn’t been trained for what he’s about to find. And this time, he may not be coming back.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverArkwright / Allen Steele.
“Nathan Arkwright is a seminal author of the twentieth century. At the end of his life he becomes reclusive and cantankerous, refusing to appear before or interact with his legion of fans. Little did anyone know, Nathan was putting into motion his true, timeless legacy. Convinced that humanity cannot survive on Earth, his Arkwright Foundation dedicates itself to creating a colony on an Earth-like planet several light years distant. Fueled by Nathan’s legacy, generations of Arkwrights are drawn together, and pulled apart, by the enormity of the task and weight of their name.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverJoin / Steve Toutonghi.
“A revolutionary technology Join, allows minds to unite their consciousness but may be blinding the world to its horrific reality. Chance and Leap are confronted by a remorseless killer who manipulates the networks that regulate life in the post-Join world. Join’s promise of living multiple lives, perfect companionship and immortality has hidden the reality of an environmentally-ravaged North America and an underground community of ‘ferals’ left behind by the rush of technology.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverWhen the heavens fall / Marc Turner.
“A book giving its wielder power over the dead has been stolen from a fellowship of mages that has kept the powerful relic dormant for centuries. The thief, a crafty, power-hungry necromancer, intends to use the Book of Lost Souls to resurrect an ancient race and challenge Shroud for dominion of the underworld. However, a host of other forces converge, drawn by the powerful magic that has been unleashed. Among them is a reluctant Guardian who is commissioned by the Emperor to find the stolen Book, a troubled prince who battles enemies both personal and political, and a young girl of great power, whose past uniquely prepares her for an encounter with Shroud.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverBarren Cove : a novel / Ariel S. Winter.
“The robot Sapien is a relic of a bygone age, searching for meaning in a world where his outdated allegiances to a time long past have left him isolated and hopeless. Seeking peace and quiet, he retires to a beach house at Barren Cove, a stately Victorian manor even more antiquated than he. He becomes increasingly fascinated with the family whose lives are entwined with the home, angry and rebellious Clark: flamboyant Kent: fragile, beautiful Mary; and most of all, Beachstone, the mysterious man whose history may hold all the answers Sapien has been searching for.” (Adapted from Syndetic summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for May

Highly recommended in this month’s selection of new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels is Graft by Matt Hill. The diversity of subject in the other novels selected this month range from brainwashing to dreams, mercenary troops to women generals, human trafficking to interstellar travel. All will provide many hours of reading entertainment.

Syndetics book coverThe Orion plan : a thriller / Mark Alpert.
“Scientists thought that Earth was safe from invasion. The distance between stars is so great that it seemed impossible for even the most advanced civilizations to send a large spaceship from one star system to another. But an alien species from a planet hundreds of light-years from Earth has found a way. A small spherical probe lands in an empty corner of New York City, preparing for alien colonization. When the government proves slow to react, NASA scientist Dr. Sarah Pooley realizes she must lead the effort to stop the probe before it becomes too powerful.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverStarbound / Dave Bara.
“The Lightship H.M.S. Impulse is gone, sacrificed in a battle against First Empire ships. And though the fragile galactic alliance has survived the unexpected invasion, the Union forces might not prove victorious against a full onslaught by this legendary enemy. Peter Cochrane, serving as an officer aboard his world’s flagship, H.M.S. Starbound, tasked with investigating a mysterious space station in a rediscovered star system. Peter and Starbound face a surprise attack by unknown forces and suffer terrible losses. But there is no time to grieve or even regroup as Peter is thrust into a new crisis, a potential civil war on the Union world of Carinthia.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCity of blades : a novel / Robert Jackson Bennett.
“A generation ago, the city of Voortyashtan was the stronghold of the god of war and death, the birthplace of fearsome supernatural sentinels who killed and subjugated millions. Now, the city’s god is dead. The city itself lies in ruins. So it makes perfect sense that General Turyin Mulaghesh, rumored war criminal, ally of an embattled Prime Minister, has been exiled there to count down the days until she can draw her pension and be forgotten. At least, it makes the perfect cover story. The truth is that the general has been pressed into service one last time, dispatched to investigate a discovery with the potential to change the world, or destroy it.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe last dream keeper / Amber Benson.
“Lyse MacAllister did not step into an easy role when she took over as master of the Echo Park coven of witches after her great-aunt Eleanora s death. As she begins to forge the bonds that will help her lead her sisters, she struggles to come to terms with her growing powers. And she soon faces a deadly new threat. A group of fanatics intent on bringing about the end of times has invaded the witches Council but the Council is turning a blind eye to the danger growing in its midst. Only one witch is prophesied to be able to stop the encroaching darkness. And if Lyse and her blood sisters are to have any chance at protecting all we know from being lost forever, they must keep her safe no matter what the cost.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe deep sea diver’s syndrome : a novel / Serge Brussolo ; translated by Edward Gauvin.
“In The Deep Sea Diver’s Syndrome, lucid dreamers called mediums dive into their dreams to retrieve ectoplasm, sticky blobs with curiously soothing properties that are the only form of art in the world. David Sarella is a medium whose dream identity is a professional thief. Only the dives require an extraordinary amount of physical effort, and as David ages, they become more difficult. David decides to go down one final time, in the deepest, most extravagant dive ever attempted.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverVisitor: A Foreigner Novel / C J Cherryh.
“The human and atevi inhabitants of Alpha Station have picked up a signal from an alien kyo ship. Five thousand of the inhabitants of Alpha are human refugees from the now derelict Reunion Station. They have seen this scenario before, when a single kyo ship swooped into the Reunion system and, without a word, melted a major section of Reunion Station with a single pass. Bren Cameron, brilliant human emissary of Tabini-aiji, the powerful atevi political leader on the mainland below, is the obvious choice of representative to be sent up to deal with both the panicked refugees and the incoming alien ship. But no one can predict what an alien race might do, or what their motivations could be.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverGraft / Matt Hill.
“Manchester, 2025. Local mechanic Sol steals old vehicles to meet the demand for spares. But when Sol’s partner impulsively jacks a luxury model, Sol finds himself caught up in a nightmarish trans-dimensional human trafficking conspiracy. Hidden in the stolen car is a voiceless, three-armed woman called Y. She’s had her memory removed and undertaken a harrowing journey into a world she only vaguely recognizes. And someone waiting in the UK expects her delivery at all costs. With the help of a dangerous triggerman and Sol’s ex, they must uncover the true, terrifying extent of the trafficking operation, or it’s all over.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe bands of mourning : a Mistborn novel / Brandon Sanderson.
“When a researcher returns to Elendel with images of a mythical Lord Ruler artifact, believed to grant wearers his power, Waxillium Ladrian conducts an investigation in the southern city of New Seran, where he makes unsettling discoveries about the true goals of The Set.”
(Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverSnakewood / Adrian Selby.
” Mercenaries who gave no quarter, they shook the pillars of the world through cunning, chemical brews, and cold steel. Whoever met their price won. Now, their glory days are behind them. Scattered to the wind and their genius leader in hiding, they are being hunted down and eliminated, one by one.” (Adapted from Syndetic summary)

Syndetics book coverThe trees / Ali Shaw.
“There came an elastic aftershock of creaks and groans and then, softly softly, a chinking shower of rubbled cement. Leaves calmed and trunks stood serene. Where, not a minute before, there had been a suburb, there was now only woodland standing amid ruins. There is no warning. No chance to prepare. They arrive in the night: thundering up through the ground, transforming streets and towns into shadowy forest. Buildings are destroyed. Broken bodies, still wrapped in tattered bed linen, hang among the twitching leaves. Adrien Thomas has never been much of a hero. But when he realises that no help is coming, he ventures out into this unrecognizable world, where he meets green-fingered Hannah and her teenage son Seb. Together, they set out to find Hannah’s forester brother and to discover just how deep the forest goes.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for April

Many favourite themes in the science fiction and fantasy genre are represented in this month’s selection from the collection’s new additions. With steampunk, the paranormal, futuristic, human-alien encounters, dystopias, space colonies and space warfare novels, the choice for reading is almost limitless.

Syndetics book coverThe diabolical Miss Hyde / Viola Carr.
“In an electric-powered Victorian London, Dr. Eliza Jekyll is a crime scene investigator, hunting killers with inventive new technological gadgets. Now, a new killer is splattering London with blood, drugging beautiful women and slicing off their limbs. Catching “the Chopper” could make Eliza’s career, or get her burned, because Eliza has a dark secret. A seductive second self, set free by her father’s forbidden magical elixir: wild, impulsive Lizzie Hyde.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverDark victory : a novel of the alien resistance / Brendan DuBois.
“A decade ago, the alien Creepers came to Earth, dropping asteroids to drown our coastal cities, detonating nuclear weapons overhead to destroy our communications, power and computer systems, and to set up their network of killer stealth satellites to kill anything on our planet that used modern technology. In a matter of days, Earth was driven back to a nineteenth century existence. Then the war really began, as the Creepers descended and set up domed bases that were impervious to everything save a nuclear bomb. For ten years then, the battered and surviving members of humanity have fought against the Creepers and their mechanized exoskeletons, until something unexpected has happened: a chance for victory.” (Adapted from Syndetic summary)

Syndetics book coverNot on fire, but burning : a novel / Greg Hrbek.
“Skyler saw it out of her window. A metallic object hovering over the Golden Gate Bridge, just before it collapsed and a mushroom cloud lifted above the city. Flash forward to a post-incident America, where the country has been broken up into two territories and Muslims have been herded onto the old Indian reservations in the west. 12-year-old Dorian dreams about killing Muslims and about his sister, who his parents insist never existed. Are they still shell-shocked, trying to put the past behind them? Or is there something more sinister happening?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe curse of Jacob Tracy / Holly Messinger.
“St. Louis in 1880 is full of ghosts, and Jacob Tracy can see them all. Miss Fairweather, a wealthy English bluestocking, needs someone to retrieve a dead friend’s legacy from a nearby town, and she specifically wants Trace to do it. However, the errand proves to be far more sinister than advertised. When confronted, Miss Fairweather admits to knowing about Trace’s curse, and suggests she might help him learn to control it, in exchange for a few more odd jobs. 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 of his. But 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.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThis census-taker : a novella / China Miéville.
“In a remote house on a hilltop, a lonely boy witnesses a profoundly traumatic event. He tries and fails to flee. Being left alone with his increasingly deranged parent, he dreams of safety with other children in the town below, of escape. When at last a stranger knocks at his door, the boy senses that his days of isolation might be over. But by what authority does this man keep the meticulous records he carries? What is the purpose behind his questions? Is he a friend or an enemy? Or something else altogether?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverTravelers rest : a novel / Keith Lee Morris.
“The Addisons–Julia and Tonio, ten-year-old Dewey, and derelict Uncle Robbie, are driving home, cross-country, after collecting Robbie from yet another trip to rehab. When a terrifying blizzard strikes outside the town of Good Night, Idaho, they seek refuge in the town at the Travelers Rest, a formerly opulent but now crumbling and eerie hotel where the physical laws of the universe are bent. Once inside the hotel, the family is separated. With each passing hour, dreams and memories blur, tearing a hole in the fabric of our perceived reality and leaving the Addisons in a ceaseless search for one another. Can this mother save her family from the fate of becoming Souvenirs, those citizens trapped forever in magnetic Good Night, or worse, from disappearing entirely?” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverPlanetfall / Emma Newman.
“In their search for a new and better life than the one that they had on the overpopulated Earth, Suh lead a group of 1000 people, including her partner and lover Ren, to another planet. Then Suh mysteriously vanished, and only Ren and the Ringleader know the truth behind her disappearance. Now, two decades later, a stranger who looks suspiciously like Suh wanders into the colony, flooding Ren with memories of the traumatic event she fought so hard to bury. If she reveals the secret she has kept for so long, it could ruin everything the colonists built.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverVersion control / Dexter Palmer.
“Rebecca Wright spends her days working in customer support for the internet dating site where she first met her husband. But she has a strange, persistent sense that everything around her is somewhat off-kilter: on TV, the President seems to be the wrong person in the wrong place; her dreams are full of disquiet. Meanwhile, her husband’s decade-long dedication to his invention, the causality violation device (which he would greatly prefer you not call a “time machine”) has effectively stalled his career and made him a laughingstock in the physics community. But he may be closer to success than either of them knows or can possibly imagine.” (Adapted from Syndetic summary)

Syndetics book coverBarsk : the elephants’ graveyard / Lawrence M. Schoen.
“In a distant future, no remnants of human beings remain, but their successors thrive throughout the galaxy. These are the offspring of humanity’s genius-animals uplifted into walking, talking, and sentient beings. The Fant are one such species: anthropomorphic elephants ostracized by other races, and long ago exiled to the rainy ghetto world of Barsk. There, they develop medicines upon which all species now depend. The most coveted of these drugs is koph, which allows a small number of users to interact with the recently deceased and learn their secrets.To break the Fant’s control of koph, an offworld shadow group attempts to force the Fant to surrender their knowledge.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverQuantum night / Robert J. Sawyer.
“Experimental psychologist Jim Marchuk has developed a flawless technique for identifying the previously undetected psychopaths lurking everywhere in society. But while being cross-examined about his breakthrough in court, Jim is shocked to discover that he has lost his memories of six months of his life from twenty years previously, a dark time during which he himself committed heinous acts. Jim is reunited with Kayla Huron, his forgotten girlfriend from his lost period and now a quantum physicist who has made a stunning discovery about the nature of human consciousness. As a rising tide of violence and hate sweeps across the globe, the psychologist and the physicist combine forces in a race against time to see if they can do the impossible, change human nature, before the entire world descends into darkness.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

New Science Fiction and Fantasy novels for March

Space warfare, human smuggling, artificial intelligence, time travel, dystopias, revenge, survival, life on other planets, and even rodents; this selection of new Science Fiction and Fantasy novels will provide some great reading for all fans of this genre.

Syndetics book coverGentleman Jole and the Red Queen / Lois McMaster Bujold.
“Three years after her famous husband’s death, Cordelia Vorkosigan, Vicereine of Sergyar, stands ready to spin her life in a new direction. Oliver Jole, Admiral, Sergyar Fleet, finds himself caught up in her web of plans in ways he’d never imagined. Meanwhile, Miles Vorkosigan, one of Emperor Gregor’s key investigators, this time dispatches himself on a mission, into a mystery he never anticipated, his own mother. Plans, wills, and expectations collide as the impact of galactic technology on the range of the possible changes all the old rules and Miles learns that not only is the future not what he expects, neither is the past.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverAn ancient peace / Tanya Huff.
“Gunnery Sergeant Torin Kerr had been the very model of a Confederation Marine. But when she learned the truth about the war the Confederation was fighting, she left the military for good. But Torin could not walk away from preserving and protecting everything the Confederation represented. Instead, she drew together an elite corps of friends and allies to take on covert missions that the Justice Department and the Corps could not, or would not, officially touch. Torin just hoped the one they were about to embark on would not be the death of them.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEurope in Autumn / Dave Hutchinson.
“Following multiple economic crises and a devastating flu pandemic, Europe has fractured into countless tiny nations, duchies, polities and republics. Recruited by the shadowy organisation ‘Les Coureurs des Bois’, Rudi is schooled in espionage, but when a training mission to The Line, a sovereign nation consisting of a trans-Europe railway line, goes wrong, he is arrested, beaten and Coureur Central must attempt a rescue. With so many nations to work in, and identities to assume, Rudi is kept busy travelling across Europe. But when he is sent to smuggle someone out of Berlin and finds a severed head inside a locker instead, a conspiracy begins to wind itself around him.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe detainee / Peter Liney.
“The Island is a place of hopelessness. The Island is death. And it is to this place that the entire elderly and infirm are shipped, the scapegoats for the collapse of society. There’s no escape, not from the punishment satellites that deliver instant judgment for any crime, including escape attempts, and not from the demons that come on foggy nights, when the satellites are all but blind. But when one of the Island’s inhabitants, the aging “Big Guy” Clancy, finds a network of tunnels beneath the waste, there is suddenly hope, for love, for escape, and for the chance to fight back.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThe builders / Daniel Polansky.
“A missing eye, a broken wing, a stolen country. The last job didn’t end well. Years go by, and scars fade, but memories only fester. For the animals of the Captain’s company, survival has meant keeping a low profile, building a new life, and trying to forget the war they lost. But now the Captain’s whiskers are twitching at the idea of evening the score.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverArcadia / Iain Pears.
“In 1960s Oxford, Professor Henry Lytten is attempting to write a fantasy novel that forgoes the magic of his predecessors, J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis. He finds an unlikely confidante in his quick-witted, inquisitive young neighbor Rosie. One day, while chasing Lytten’s cat, Rosie encounters a doorway in his cellar. She steps through and finds herself in an idyllic, pastoral land where Storytellers are revered above all others. There she meets a young man who is about to embark on a quest of his own and may be the one chance Rosie has of returning home. These breathtaking adventures ultimately intertwine with the story of an eccentric psychomathematician whose breakthrough discovery will affect all of these different lives and worlds.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverCrashing Heaven / Al Robertson.
“With Earth abandoned, humanity resides on Station, an industrialised asteroid run by the sentient corporations of the Pantheon. Under their leadership a war has been raging against the Totality, ex-Pantheon AIs gone rogue. With the war over, Jack Forster and his sidekick Hugo Fist, a virtual puppet tied to Jack’s mind and created to destroy the Totality, have returned home. Labelled a traitor for surrendering to the Totality, all Jack wants is to clear his name but when he discovers two old friends have died under suspicious circumstances he also wants answers. Soon he and Fist are embroiled in a conspiracy that threatens not only their future but all of humanity’s.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverThis is the night : a novel / Jonah C. Sirott.
“For more than twenty years, the Homeland has been immersed in a brutal, unwinnable war. Lance, two weeks shy of turning eighteen, has watched his older brothers leave and his mother fall apart when they fail to return. He’s never imagined a different future for himself until he meets an idealistic young woman named Lorrie and impulsively flees town with her. Lance and Lorrie move into the same building as Benny and Joe, two friends up for induction. Along with Alan, a young runaway, they frantically evade Registry agents intent on tracking down draft dodgers. With induction day looming and paranoia rampant, the only way for any of them to stay free is to uncover the truth about their uncertain world and the forces seeking to control it.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverEcko endgame / Danie Ware.
“Winter has come to the Varchinde and with it, the fatal spread of the blight. The grass is dead, the cities are falling and the Kas take their chance to rise from Rammouthe. Betrayed by his own forces, Rhan will abandon Fhaveon to lure the Kas into a final confrontation. As battle rages round him, Ecko realises that to save the Varchinde, he must face the greatest threat of al, the one that has come from his own world.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)

Syndetics book coverReign of iron / Angus Watson.
“The final book in the Iron Age trilogy. Caesar’s soldiers have murdered, massacred and pillaged their way through Gaul and loom on the far side of the sea, ready to descend upon Britain, with them are an unstoppable legion of men twisted by dark magic. Somehow Queen Lowa must repel the invasion, although her best general is dead and her young druid powerless. She faces impossible odds, but when the alternative is death or slavery, a warrior queen will do whatever it takes to save her people.” (Adapted from Syndetics summary)