It’s publication day! And in these social distancing times, we have just the thing to get you through it: books. Whether it’s the conclusion to a cracking epic fantasy series, or a sweeping standalone science fiction, we have you covered. Read on for the details, and then get reading!
The House of Sundering Flames, Aliette de Bodard
The multi-award-winning author of The House of Shattered Wings and The House of Binding Thorns concludes her Dominion of the Fallen saga, as the great Houses of Paris–headed by Fallen angels and magicians–vie with each other for control of a city devastated by a magical war.
The great magical Houses of Paris – headed by Fallen angels and magicians – were, however temporarily, at peace with each other. Until House Harrier was levelled by a powerful explosion. Now that peace has become chaos, tearing apart old alliances and setting off a race in which each House hoards magic and resources to protect itself against another such blast.
Thuan, the Dragon head of the divided House Hawthorn, is still consolidating his power when war comes to his doorstep. Aurore -exiled from and almost beaten to death by House Harrier – sees her moment to seek power in order to protect her family, even if she must venture back to her destroyed former home to get it. And Emmanuelle finds herself alone in the middle of it all, driven to protect others, trying to piece together what has happened, and hoping – eventually – to make sense of it all.
None of them know what destroyed House Harrier, though . . . and when they do uncover that fiery, destructive magic then divided Houses, old enemies and estranged friends will all have to make a decision: stand together, or burn alone . . .
Praise for Aliette de Bodard
‘Aliette de Bodard presents a gritty, otherworldly Paris in her fast-paced, fantastical thriller’ Washington Post
‘Elegantly written’ Guardian
‘A superb blend of intrigue, mystery and magic, and urban fantasy; brilliantly written’ Civilian Reader
Smoke in the Glass, Chris Humphreys
A thrilling new dark fantasy series about immortality, war and survival, from the bestselling historical author Chris (CC) Humphreys.
Three lands, peopled by humans and immortals. In Corinthium a decadent endlessly-lived elite run the world for profit and power. But when a poor, honest solider dies, and is reborn, everything changes. In wintry Midgarth, where immortals are revered as deities, one of them has realised that something – or someone – is killing the gods. And in Ometepe there is only one immortal, for he has murdered every other. Until one woman gives birth to a very special baby.
Yet there is a fourth, hidden land, where savage tribes have united under the prophecy of ‘the One’: a child who is neither boy nor girl. Now they plan to conquer the world. Unless a broken soldier, a desperate mother and a crippled god can stop them . . .
Praise for Chris Humphreys
‘An intriguing premise . . . an intricate, fast-paced story . . . Humphreys packs gods, deicide, warring tribes and some impressive world-building into just over 300 pages’ Guardian
‘A brilliant epic fantasy debut from a master storyteller’ Sebastien de Castell
‘Wonderful characters and great world-building, in Humphreys’ special brand of addictive storytelling’ Diana Gabaldon
‘Humphreys’ plot, prose, and characters give this book a sense of quality and gravity without skimping on fun and readability’ Grimdark Magazine
‘Brilliant: smoothly-written, engaging, fascinating. The kid can write. The world is wonderful – I wish I’d thought of it’ Conn Iggulden
Ancestral Night, Elizabeth Bear
A space salvager and her partner make the discovery of a lifetime that just might change the universe in this wild, big-ideas space opera from multi award-winning author Elizabeth Bear.
Haimey Dz thinks she knows what she wants.
She thinks she knows who she is.
She is wrong.
A routine salvage mission uncovers evidence of a terrible crime and relics of a powerful ancient technology, just as Haimey and her small crew run afoul of pirates at the outer limits of the Milky Way and find themselves both on the run, and in possession of ancient, universe-changing technology.
When the authorities prove corrupt, it becomes clear that Haimey is the only one who can protect her galaxy-spanning civilisation from its potential power – and from the revolutionaries who want to use it to seed terror and war. But doing so will take her from the event horizon of the super-massive black hole at the galaxy’s core to the infinite, empty spaces at its edge. Along the way, she’ll have to uncover the secrets of ancient intelligences lost to time as well as her own lost secrets, which she will wish had remained hidden from her forever . . .
Energetic and electrifying, Ancestral Night is a dazzling new space opera, sure to delight fans of Alastair Reynolds, Iain M. Banks, and Peter F. Hamilton.
Praise for Elizabeth Bear
‘Gripping, perfectly balanced, and highly recommended’ Kirkus
‘Like the best of speculative fiction, Bear has created a fascinating and complete universe that blends high-tech gadgetry with Old World adventure and political collusion’ Publishers Weekly
War of the Maps, Paul McAuley
Across a massive structure hanging in space, the lucidor hunts a criminal. The maps of the world are under attack from an unknown genetic invader, but nothing is more important than justice.
On a giant artificial world surrounding an artificial sun, one man – a lucidor, a keeper of the peace, a policeman – is on the hunt. His target was responsible for an atrocity, but is too valuable to the government to be truly punished. Instead he has been sent to the frontlines of the war, to use his unique talents on the enemy. So the lucidor has ignored orders, deserted from his job, left his home and thrown his life away, in order to finally claim justice.
Separated by massive seas, the various maps dotted on the surface of this world rarely contact each other. But something has begun to infiltrate the edges of the lucidor’s map, something that genetically alters animals and plants and turns them into killers. Only the lucidor knows the depths to which his quarry will sink in order to survive, only the lucidor can capture him. The way is long and dangerous. The lucidor’s government has set hunters after him. He has no friends, no resources, no plan.
But he does have a mission.
Praise for Paul McAuley
‘An exquisite human story set on an undiscovered continent of our near future. Austral may be McAuley’s best yet. And the best near-future novel yet written. Paul McAuley has quickened science fiction. The future has changed’ Stephen Baxter on Austral
‘A thrilling chase-cum-travelogue through a beautifully depicted Antarctic wonderland’ Guardian on Austral
‘McAuley is a nature poet of imaginary lands’ Locus