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Interview with Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter

Please welcome Andrea Stewart to The Qwillery as part of the 2020 Debut Author Challenge Interviews. The Bone Shard Daughter was published on September 8, 2020 by Orbit.



Interview with Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter




TQWelcome to The Qwillery. What is the first fiction piece you remember writing? 

Andrea:  The first fiction piece I remember writing was in response to a creative writing prompt in fifth grade. The prompt was to choose an item made of clay and to write about it coming to life. I wrote about the statue of a peregrine falcon coming to life and flying me away to a magical land where I got to meet other clay creatures that had come to life. My teacher loved it and encouraged me to continue writing, and that's how I started down this whole road! 
 
 
 
TQ:  Are you a plotter, a pantser or a hybrid? 
 
Andrea:  I'm definitely a plotter. I like to have a road map of where I'm going, and it feels like I get there faster when I have one. I start with a pitch that outlines the main conflict, then I write a couple chapters to get a feel for the world and the voices, then I do a chapter-by-chapter outline. Once I have that nailed down to my satisfaction, I start drafting from beginning to end. That said, things often change a little while I write! 
 
 
 
TQ:  What is the most challenging thing for you about writing? 
 
Andrea:  my writing. I really want people to feel like they have that sense of place when they're reading. The news, history, my personal experiences—all are things that end up coloring my work. 
 
 
 
TQ:  Describe The Bone Shard Daughter using only 5 words. 
 
Andrea:  Revolution, identity, magic, islands, and keys. 
 
 
 
TQ:  Tell us something about The Bone Shard Daughter that is not found in the book description. 
 
Andrea:  I know this has surprised some people, so even though the description focuses on Lin's point of view, there are actually several point-of-view characters in the book. It follows Lin, Jovis, Ranami and Phalue, and Sand. Each character has their part to play in the overall story. 
 
 
 
TQ:  What inspired you to write The Bone Shard Daughter? What appeals to you about writing Epic Fantasy? 
 
Andrea:  The seed of inspiration started for me at the San Antonio WorldCon, when I went to lunch at the food court with my friends. My friend Marina Lostetter (who has since had a SF trilogy out and has a fantasy trilogy from Tor on the way) nearly choked on a piece of bone in her lunch. It started me thinking about using shards of bone as a source of magic. Of course, the idea evolved and grew a lot from there, and I added a lot of elements I enjoy seeing in books. It stewed in my brain for a while as I was working on other things. Once the ideas felt ready to me, I sat down and wrote the book! 

There's a lot that appeals to me about writing epic fantasy. I love the high stakes of it all—the clash of power and influence, the magic, the world-changing revelations. The scope allows for grand storytelling as well as allowing you to tie events to smaller, more intimate moments. And there's that sense of wonder that always seems to accompany epic fantasy. You can transport a reader to an utterly strange and new landscape, plus give them a sense of sweeping history, all from the comfort of their couch. 
 
 
 
TQ:  What sort of research did you do for The Bone Shard Daughter? 
 
Andrea:  I checked out a lot of books from the library and read a lot of Wikipedia articles. I don't take a lot of notes when I research. I'm generally not trying to capture a particular time period or a particular place, but reading about historical events and specific places does help me pick out threads and patterns of what I want to see in my world. I also like to read travel guides and sometimes to watch some travel videos. The little details are important to me, and just looking at the photos and the things in the background can sometimes provide me with inspiration on what things I should include when writing. 
 
 
 
TQ:  Please tell us about the cover for The Bone Shard Daughter.
 
Andrea:  The art was done by Sasha Vinogradova and the design by Lauren Panepinto. The cover is less a direct representation of a scene in the novel and more representative of the elements in the novel as a whole. I love it so much! It pulls together so many important elements—the city buildings, the waves, the ships, and the key. And if you look closely, you'll notice a little creature in the bow of the key... 
 
 
TQ:  In The Bone Shard Daughter who was the easiest character to write and why? The hardest and why? 
 
Andrea:  I think in some ways Jovis was the easiest to write. He's got my silly sense of humor, and often feels exasperated with himself—something I deeply relate to. He's a fair bit grumpier than I am, but I also found it fun to write in that aspect of his personality. Sand was probably the most difficult to write. She starts, in some ways, much like a blank slate. Her circumstances are the most mysterious of all the characters, and she's figuring out what they mean as the story progresses. It's difficult to write a character like that in an engaging way, I think!
 
 
 
TQ:  Does The Bone Shard Daughter touch on any social issues?
 
Andrea:  I definitely tried to touch on some social issues. Ranami and Phalue's storyline is centered around their differences of privilege—they both love one another but are coming from two very different places in society. If they can't find a way to bridge that gap between them, their relationship falls apart and their whole island suffers for it. Lin is the daughter of the Emperor, trying to reclaim her place as heir. Although she focuses on this, she eventually has to decide if she wants to be the sort of leader her father has been or if she wants to take a different, less oppressive path. And Jovis is on a personal mission, one that ends up clashing with the greater purpose of the brewing revolution. He has to decide how much responsibility he has to others and to society, and whether that takes precedence over his personal needs. 
 
 
 
TQ:  Which question about The Bone Shard Daughter do you wish someone would ask? Ask it and answer it! 
 
Andrea:  “Did you think The Bone Shard Daughter would be published when you were writing it?” 
 
I did not! When it went out on submission, I immediately started working on a new, completely different book so I wouldn't feel as bad if no one wanted to buy it. I'd had two prior books go out on submission to publishers that didn't sell, so the realistic part of me thought I'd just keep on to the next thing—I hadn't the best track record! I did feel like it was the best thing I'd written so far, but I always felt that way. I do try to improve with each book. 
 
 
 
TQ:  Give us one or two of your favorite non-spoilery quotes from The Bone Shard Daughter. 
 
Andrea:  I think my favorite is: "I was Lin. I was the Emperor's daughter. And I would show him that even broken daughters could wield power." It just marks a big turning point for her and ties back to the very beginning. 
 
 
 
TQ:  What's next?
 
Andrea:  Next up are the next two books in The Drowning Empire trilogy, probably a sci-fi with time bubbles I've been fiddling with, and more epic fantasy in strange new worlds! I've got so many ideas and so many places I want to show people! 
 
 
 
TQ:  Thank you for joining us at The Qwillery!
 
 
 
 
 
 
The Bone Shard Daughter
The Drowning Empire 1
Orbit, September 8, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 448 pages

Interview with Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter
Introducing a major new voice in epic fantasy: in an empire controlled by bone shard magic, Lin, the former heir to the emperor, will fight to reclaim her magic and her place on the throne.

The emperor’s reign has lasted for decades, his mastery of bone shard magic powering the animal-like constructs that maintain law and order. But now his rule is failing, and revolution is sweeping across the Empire’s many islands.

Lin is the emperor’s daughter and spends her days trapped in a palace of locked doors and dark secrets. When her father refuses to recognise her as heir to the throne, she vows to prove her worth by mastering the forbidden art of bone shard magic.

Yet such power carries a great cost, and when the revolution reaches the gates of the palace, Lin must decide how far she is willing to go to claim her birthright – and save her people.






About Andrea 

Interview with Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter

Andrea Stewart is the daughter of immigrants, and was raised in a number of places across the United States. Her parents always emphasized science and education, so she spent her childhood immersed in Star Trek and odd-smelling library books. When her (admittedly ambitious) dreams of becoming a dragon slayer didn’t pan out, she instead turned to writing books. She now lives in sunny California, and in addition to writing, can be found herding cats, looking at birds, and falling down research rabbit holes. 






Website ~ Twitter @AndreaGStewart

2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts


2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts


Each month you will be able to vote for your favorite cover from that month's debut novels. At the end of the year the 12 monthly winners will be pitted against each other to choose the 2020 Debut Novel Cover of the Year. Please note that a debut novel cover is eligible in the month in which the novel is published in the US. Cover artist/illustrator/designer information is provided when we have it. 

I'm using PollCode for this vote. After you the check the circle next to your favorite, click "Vote" to record your vote. If you'd like to see the real-time results click "View". This will take you to the PollCode site where you may see the results. If you want to come back to The Qwillery click "Back" and you will return to this page. Voting will end sometime on September 30, 2020, unless the vote is extended. If the vote is extended the ending date will be updated.

Vote for your favorite September 2020 Debut Cover!
 
pollcode.com free polls




2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover design by Lauren Panepinto
Cover art by Sasha Vinogradova
Cover copyright © 2020 by Hachette Book Group, Inc.





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover by Daniel Strange





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover design by Elizabeth Story
Intial concepts by Francesca Myman





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover art by Sam Gretton





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Jacket design by Yeon Kim
Jacket Image © Chipmunk131 /Shutterstock (silhouette)





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover by Chris Panatier and Glen Wilkins





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts
Cover art by Anka Lavriv
Cover and interior design by Dana Li





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts





2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September Debuts

The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020


Happy Tuesday!

There are 5 debuts this week:

The Sentient by Nadia Afifi;

Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire by Dan Hanks;

Architects of Memory (The Memory War 1) by Karen Osborne;

The Phlebotomist by Chris Panatier;

and

The Bone Shard Daughter (Drowning Empire 1) by Andrea Stewart.

The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.



From formerly featured DAC Authors:

The Mythos War Trilogy: Red Right Hand, Black Goat Blues, Death Goddess Dance by Levi Black (eBook Bundle);

Little Darlings by Melanie Golding is out in Trade Paperback;

Cypher (The Violet Wars 2) by Rich Larson;

Prime Deceptions (Chilling Effect 2) by Valerie Valdes;

and

Shadows in Summerland by Adrian Van Young.

The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020
Clicking on a novel's cover will take you to its Amazon page.



The View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 2020



Debut novels are highlighted in blue. Novels, etc. by formerly featured DAC Authors are highlighted in green.

September 8, 2020
TITLEAUTHORSERIES
Apocalypse Yesterday Brock Adams SF/AP/PA/Dys/Occ/Sup
The Sentient (D) Nadia Afifi SF/GenEng - Fiction Without Frontiers
Second Chance Angel Griffin Barber
Kacey Ezell
SF - Last Stop Station 1
The Mythos War Trilogy: Red Right Hand, Black Goat Blues, Death Goddess Dance (e) Levi Black DF/H - The Mythos War
Checked Out for Murder Allison Brook PCM - A Haunted Library Mystery 4
Sunspot Jungle: Volume Two: The Ever Expanding Universe of Fantasy and Science Fiction Bill Campbell (Ed) SF/F/H - Anthology
Divergence C. J. Cherryh SF/AC/SO/SE - Foreigner Universe 21
Little Darlings (h2tp) Melanie Golding SupTh/FairyT/FolkT/LM/PP
Afterlife Crisis Randal Graham F/HU/SF - The Beforelife Stories 2
Master of Poisons Andrea Hairston F
Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire (D) Dan Hanks F/HistF
The Ghost Tree Christina Henry H/DF/HistF
Full Throttle: Stories (h2tp) Joe Hill SS
Sanctuary V. V. James Cr/Occ/Sup/SupTh/CW/STR
The Raven Jonathan Janz H - Fiction Without Frontiers
It Will Just Be Us Jo Kaplan H/SupTh
Cypher Rich Larson SF/AC/AP/PA - Violet Wars 2
Supernova Era (h2tp) Cixin Liu
Joel Martinsen (Tr)
SF/HSF
Architects of Memory (D) Karen Osborne SF/SO/AC - The Memory War 1
The Invention of Sound Chuck Palahniuk H/Occ/Sup/LF/Cr/Noir
The Phlebotomist (D) Chris Panatier SF/AP/PA/DF
Misfits Hunter Shea H - Fiction Without Frontiers
The Bone Shard Daughter (D) Andrea Stewart F/HistF - Drowning Empire 1
The Year's Best Science Fiction Vol. 1: The Saga Anthology of Science Fiction 2020 Jonathan Strahan SF - Anthology
Ghost Story (ri) Peter Straub H/Sus/LF
Fearless Allen Stroud SF - Fiction Without Frontiers
Prime Deceptions Valerie Valdes SF/SO - Chilling Effect 2
Shadows in Summerland (ri) Adrian Van Young Occ/HistTh/SupTh
A Snake Lies Waiting: The Definitive Edition Jin Yong
Anna Holmwood (Tr)
F/HistF - Legends of the Condor Heroes 3



D - Debut
e - eBook
Ed - Editor
h2mm - Hardcover to Mass Market Paperback
h2tp - Hardcover to Trade Paperback
Ke - Kindle eBook
ri - reissue or reprint
tp2mm - Trade Paperback to Mass Market Paperback
Tr - Translator



AB - Absurdist
AC - Alien Contact
AH - Alternative History
AP - Apocalyptic
CF - Contemporary Fantasy
CoA - Coming of Age
Cr - Crime
CW - Contemporary Women
CyP - CyberPunk
DF - Dark Fantasy
Dys - Dystopian
F - Fantasy
FairyT - Fairy Tales
FL - Family Life
FolkT - Folk Tales
FR - Fantasy Romance
GenEng - Genetic Engineering
GH - Ghost(s)
GothicR - Gothic Romance
H - Horror
HC - History and Criticism
Hist - Historical
HistF - Historical Fantasy
HistM - Historical Mystery
HistR - Historical Romance
HistTh - Historical Thriller
HSF - Hard Science Fiction
HU - Humorous
LC - Literary Criticism
LF - Literary Fiction
LM - Legend and Mythology
M - Mystery
Med - Medical
MR - Magical Realism
MTI - Media Tie-In
Occ - Occult
P - Paranormal
PA - Post Apocalyptic
PCM - Paranormal Cozy Mystery
PNR - Paranormal Romance
Pol - Political
PolTh - Political Thriller
PopCul - Popular Culture
Psy - Psychological
R - Romance
RF - Romantic Fantasy
ScF - Science Fantasy
SE - Space Exploration
SF - Science Fiction
SFR - Science Fiction Romance
SFTh - Science Fiction Thriller
SH - Superheroes
SO - Space Opera
SP - Steampunk
SpecFic - Speculative Fiction
SS - Short Stories
STR - Small Town and Rural
Sup - Supernatural
SupM - Supernatural Mystery
SupTh - Supernatural Thriller
Sus - Suspense
TechTh - Technological Thriller
Th - Thriller
TT - Time Travel
TTR - Time Travel Romance
UF - Urban Fantasy
VM - Visionary and Metaphysical

Note: Not all genres and formats are found in the books, etc. listed above.

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts



2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts


There are 14 debuts for September 2020.

Please note that we use the publisher's publication date in the United States, not copyright dates or non-US publication dates.

The September debut authors and their novels are listed in alphabetical order by author (not book title or publication date). Take a good look at the covers. Voting for your favorite September cover for the 2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars will take place starting on or about September 15, 2020.



Nadia Afifi

The Sentient
Flame Tree Publishing, September 8, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 304 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
"Afifi’s staggering and un-put-downable debut offers a fresh and feminist-forward take on cloning [...] This riveting debut is a must-have for any sci-fi fan."— Publishers Weekly starred review

Included in Library Journal's "Rise of the Monsters: Top Horror Titles and Trends Coming This Season

Amira Valdez is a brilliant neuroscientist trying to put her past on a religious compound behind her. But when she’s assigned to a controversial cloning project, her dreams of working in space are placed in jeopardy. Using her talents as a reader of memories, Amira uncovers a conspiracy to stop the creation of the first human clone – at all costs.
As she unravels the mystery, Amira navigates a dangerous world populated by anti-cloning militants, scientists with hidden agendas, and a mysterious New Age movement. In the process, Amira uncovers an even darker secret, one that forces her to confront her own past.





Natalka Burian

Daughters of the Wild
Park Row, September 22, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 304 pages
(D - Adult)

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
“A gorgeous, different, and completely engrossing book. Burian’s writing is transporting -- and exactly what I needed right now.”
— Jessica Valenti, author of
Sex Object: A Memoir

In rural West Virginia, Joanie and her foster siblings live on a farm tending a mysterious plant called the vine. The older girls are responsible for cultivating the vine, performing sacred rituals to make it grow. After Joanie’s arranged marriage goes horribly wrong, leaving her widowed and with a baby, she plots her escape with the help of her foster brother, Cello.

But before they can get away, her baby goes missing and Joanie, desperate to find him, turns to the vine, understanding it to be far more powerful than her siblings realize. She begins performing generations-old rituals to summon the vine’s power and goes on a perilous journey into the wild, pushing the boundaries of her strength and sanity to bring her son home.

Daughters of the Wild is an utterly absorbing debut that explores the female mind in captivity and the ways in which both nature and women fight domination. Like The Bell Jar set in rural Appalachia, Daughters of the Wild introduces a fierce new heroine and a striking new voice in fiction.





K-Ming Chang

Bestiary
One World, September 29, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 272 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Three generations of Taiwanese American women are haunted by the myths of their homeland in this spellbinding, visceral debut about one family’s queer desires, violent impulses, and buried secrets.

LONGLISTED FOR THE CENTER FOR FICTION FIRST NOVEL PRIZE • “Epic and intimate at once, Bestiary brings myth to visceral life. K-Ming Chang’s talent exposes what is hidden inside us. She makes magic on the page.”—Julia Philips, author of Disappearing Earth

One evening, Mother tells Daughter a story about a tiger spirit who lived in a woman’s body. She was called Hu Gu Po, and she hungered to eat children, especially their toes. Soon afterward, Daughter awakes with a tiger tail. And more mysterious events follow: Holes in the backyard spit up letters penned by her grandmother; a visiting aunt arrives with snakes in her belly; a brother tests the possibility of flight. All the while, Daughter is falling for Ben, a neighborhood girl with strange powers of her own. As the two young lovers translate the grandmother’s letters, Daughter begins to understand that each woman in her family embodies a myth—and that she will have to bring her family’s secrets to light in order to change their destiny.

With a poetic voice of crackling electricity, K-Ming Chang is an explosive young writer who combines the wit and fabulism of Helen Oyeyemi with the subversive storytelling of Maxine Hong Kingston. Tracing one family’s history from Taiwan to America, from Arkansas to California, Bestiary is a novel of migration, queer lineages, and girlhood.





Hannah Abigail Clarke

The Scapegracers
The Scapegracers 1
Erewhon, September 15, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 400 pages
(YA Crossover)

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Skulking near the bottom of West High’s social pyramid, Sideways Pike lurks under the bleachers doing magic tricks for bottles of Coke. 

As a witch, lesbian, and lifelong outsider, she’s had a hard time making friends. But when the three most popular girls pay her forty dollars to cast a spell at their Halloween party, Sideways gets swept into a new clique. The unholy trinity are dangerous angels, sugar-coated rattlesnakes, and now—unbelievably—Sideways’ best friends.

Together, the four bond to form a ferocious and powerful coven. They plan parties, cast curses on dudebros, try to find Sideways a girlfriend, and elude the fundamentalist witchfinders hell-bent on stealing their magic. But for Sideways, the hardest part is the whole “having friends” thing. Who knew that balancing human interaction with supernatural peril could be so complicated?

Rich with the urgency of feral youth, The Scapegracers is an atmospheric, voice-driven novel of the occult that explores magic, growing up, and complex female friendship with all the rage of a teenage girl.




Dan Hanks

Captain Moxley and the Embers of the Empire
Angry Robot, September 8, 2020
Mass Market Paperback and eBook, 394 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
An ex-Spitfire pilot is dragged into a race against a shadowy government agency to unlock the secrets of the lost empire of Atlantis…

In the post-war peace of 1952, ex-Spitfire pilot Captain Samantha Moxley should be done fighting bad guys. Instead, she finds herself dragged into a clash with a mysterious US government agency known as The Nine, when they take an interest in the work of Jess, her archaeologist sister.

Pursued by The Nine, former Nazis, and a host of otherworldly monsters, Sam must fight to protect her sister and uncover two hidden keys which promise to unlock the greatest archaeological find in history: the fabled Hall of Records.

From the skies over New York, to the catacombs of Paris, and finally to the ruins of Ancient Egypt, her quest takes her into the ashes of the past in search of the dying embers of an empire….and a discovery that could transform the world, or bring it to a terrible end.

File Under: Fantasy  [ Top Women | Riff-RAF | Pyramid Scheme | Bash the Fash ]





Alice James

Grave Secrets
The Lavington Windsor Mysteries 1
Solaris, September 1, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 300 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Agatha Raisin meets Sookie Stackhouse, with croquet and zombies.

"Fun, fast debut... Fans of Charlaine Harris’s Sookie Stackhouse will want to check out Toni." -- Publishers Weekly

Toni Windsor is trying to live a quiet life in the green and pleasant county of Staffordshire. She'd love to finally master the rules of croquet, acquire a decent boyfriend and make some commission as an estate agent.

All that might have to wait, though, because there are zombies rising from their graves, vampires sneaking out of their coffins and a murder to solve.

And it's all made rather more complicated by the fact that she's the one raising all the zombies. Oh, and she's dating one of the vampires too. Really, what's a girl meant to do?

"Raises the zombie genre from the grave."- Jack Hayes

"Dead funny."- Mark Beech


Readers are loving the newest necromancer in town. Read advance praise for Grave Secrets from NetGalley:

"Heads up to all fans of True Blood and Buffy, our new favourite heroine is here, she's a necromancer, and she's kind of a hot mess!"- NetGalley review

"A thrilling five-star read."- NetGalley review

"A fun filled, laugh out loud page turner."- NetGalley review





R.B. Lemberg

The Four Profound Weaves
Tachyon Publications, September 1, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 192 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Two transgender elders must learn to weave from Death in order to defeat an evil ruler―in the debut full-length work set in R. B. Lemberg’s award-winning queer fantasy Birdverse universe

“The Four Profound Weaves is the anti-authoritarian, queer-mystical fairy tale we need right now.” ―Annalee Newitz, author of The Future of Another Timeline

“A beautiful, heartfelt story of change, family, identity, and courage.” ―Library Journal, starred review
The Surun’ nomads do not speak of the master weaver, Benesret, who creates the cloth of bone for assassins in the Great Burri Desert. But aged Uiziya must find her aunt in order to learn the final weave, although the price for knowledge may be far too dear to pay.

Among the Khana in the springflower city of Iyar, women travel in caravans to trade, while men remain in the inner quarter, as scholars. A nameless man struggles to embody Khana masculinity, after many years of performing the life of a woman, trader, wife, and grandmother.

As his past catches up, the nameless man must choose between the life he dreamed of and Uiziya―while Uiziya must discover how to challenge the evil Ruler of Iyar, and to weave from deaths that matter.

In this breathtaking debut set in R. B. Lemberg’s beloved Birdverse, The Four Profound Weaves offers a timeless chronicle of claiming one's identity in a hostile world.

About the Birdverse: The Birdverse is the creation of fantasy author R. B. Lemberg. It is a complex, culturally diverse world, with a range of LGBTQIA characters and different family configurations. Named after its deity, Bird, Birdverse shorter works have been nominated the Nebula, Hugo, Tiptree award, and Rhysling awards. The Four Profound Weaves is the first full-length work set in the Birdverse.





Özgür Mumcu
Mark David Myers (Tr)

The Peace Machine
Pushkin Press, September 22, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 224 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
We’ll create a machine. A peace machine that will put an end to all wars.

As the twentieth century dawns the world stands on the brink of yet another bloody war. But what if conflict were not inevitable? What if a machine could exploit the latest developments in electromagnetic science to influence people’s minds? And what if such a machine could put an end to violence for ever?

The search for the answer to these questions will lead our hero Celal away from his unassuming life as an Istanbul-based writer of erotic fiction, and on a quest across a continent stumbling headlong towards disaster, from Istanbul to Paris and Belgrade, as he struggles to uncover the mystery of The Peace Machine before time runs out for humanity.





Karen Osborne

Architects of Memory
The Memory War 1
Tor Books, September 8, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 352 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Millions died after the first contact. An alien weapon holds the key to redemption—or annihilation. Experience Karen Osborne's unforgettable science fiction debut, Architects of Memory.

Terminally ill salvage pilot Ash Jackson lost everything in the war with the alien Vai, but she'll be damned if she loses her future. Her plan: to buy, beg, or lie her way out of corporate indenture and find a cure. When her crew salvages a genocidal weapon from a ravaged starship above a dead colony, Ash uncovers a conspiracy of corporate intrigue and betrayal that threatens to turn her into a living weapon.




Chris Panatier

The Phlebotomist
Angry Robot, September 8, 2020
Trade Paperback and eBook, 344 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
In a near future where citizens are subject to the mandatory blood draw, government phlebotomist Willa Wallace witnesses an event that makes her question her whole world…

To recover from a cataclysmic war, the Harvest was instituted to pass blood to those affected by radiation. But this charitable act has led to a society segregated entirely by blood type. Government blood contractor, Patriot, rewards you generous gift based on the compatibility of your donation, meaning that whoever can give the most, gets the most in return.

While working as a reaper taking collections for the Harvest, Willa chances upon an idea to resurrect an obsolete technique that could rebalance the city. But in her quest to set things into motion, she uncovers a horrifying secret that cuts to the heart of everything.

File Under: Science Fiction [ Blood Will Out | This Might Hurt a Bit | Be positive | Bloody Nightmare ]





Christopher Paolini

To Sleep in a Sea of Stars
Tor Books, September 15, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 880 pages
(D - Adult)

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
To Sleep in a Sea of Stars is a brand new epic novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author of Eragon, Christopher Paolini.

Kira Navárez dreamed of life on new worlds.

Now she's awakened a nightmare.

During a routine survey mission on an uncolonized planet, Kira finds an alien relic. At first she's delighted, but elation turns to terror when the ancient dust around her begins to move.

As war erupts among the stars, Kira is launched into a galaxy-spanning odyssey of discovery and transformation. First contact isn't at all what she imagined, and events push her to the very limits of what it means to be human.

While Kira faces her own horrors, Earth and its colonies stand upon the brink of annihilation. Now, Kira might be humanity's greatest and final hope . . .





Simon Stephenson

Set My Heart to Five
Hanover Square Press, September 1, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 448 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
*SET TO BE A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE DIRECTED BY EDGAR WRIGHT (SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD)*

‘A beautiful, funny, heartfelt analysis of what it means to be human.’—Simon Pegg

‘One of the most unique books ever crafted.’—Mike Chen, author of
A Beginning at the End
Set in a 2054 where humans have locked themselves out of the internet and Elon Musk has incinerated the moon, Set My Heart to Five is the hilarious yet profoundly moving story of one android’s emotional awakening.

One day at a screening of a classic movie, Jared notices a strange sensation around his eyes. Bots are not permitted to have feelings, but as the theater lights come on, Jared discovers he is crying.

Soon overwhelmed by powerful emotions, Jared heads west, determined to find others like himself. But a bot with feelings is a dangerous proposition, and Jared’s new life could come to an end before it truly begins. Unless, that is, he can somehow change the world for himself and all of his kind.

Unlike anything you have ever read before, Set My Heart to Five is a love letter to outsiders everywhere. Plus it comes uniquely guaranteed to make its readers weep a minimum of 29mls of tears.*

*Book must be read in controlled laboratory conditions arranged at reader’s own expense. Other terms and conditions may apply to this offer.





Andrea Stewart

The Bone Shard Daughter
The Drowning Empire 1
Orbit, September 8, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 448 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
Introducing a major new voice in epic fantasy: in an empire controlled by bone shard magic, Lin, the former heir to the emperor, will fight to reclaim her magic and her place on the throne.

The emperor’s reign has lasted for decades, his mastery of bone shard magic powering the animal-like constructs that maintain law and order. But now his rule is failing, and revolution is sweeping across the Empire’s many islands.

Lin is the emperor’s daughter and spends her days trapped in a palace of locked doors and dark secrets. When her father refuses to recognise her as heir to the throne, she vows to prove her worth by mastering the forbidden art of bone shard magic.

Yet such power carries a great cost, and when the revolution reaches the gates of the palace, Lin must decide how far she is willing to go to claim her birthright – and save her people.





Natalie Zina Walschots

Hench
William Morrow, September 22, 2020
Hardcover and eBook, 416 pages

2020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts
“This book is fast, furious, compelling, and angry as hell." -- Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author

The Boys meets My Year of Rest and Relaxation in this smart, imaginative, and evocative novel of love, betrayal, revenge, and redemption, told with razor-sharp wit and affection, in which a young woman discovers the greatest superpower—for good or ill—is a properly executed spreadsheet.

Anna does boring things for terrible people because even criminals need office help and she needs a job. Working for a monster lurking beneath the surface of the world isn’t glamorous. But is it really worse than working for an oil conglomerate or an insurance company? In this economy?

As a temp, she’s just a cog in the machine. But when she finally gets a promising assignment, everything goes very wrong, and an encounter with the so-called “hero” leaves her badly injured.  And, to her horror, compared to the other bodies strewn about, she’s the lucky one.

So, of course, then she gets laid off.

With no money and no mobility, with only her anger and internet research acumen, she discovers her suffering at the hands of a hero is far from unique. When people start listening to the story that her data tells, she realizes she might not be as powerless as she thinks.

Because the key to everything is data: knowing how to collate it, how to manipulate it, and how to weaponize it. By tallying up the human cost these caped forces of nature wreak upon the world, she discovers that the line between good and evil is mostly marketing.  And with social media and viral videos, she can control that appearance.

It’s not too long before she’s employed once more, this time by one of the worst villains on earth. As she becomes an increasingly valuable lieutenant, she might just save the world.

A sharp, witty, modern debut, Hench explores the individual cost of justice through a fascinating mix of Millennial office politics, heroism measured through data science, body horror, and a profound misunderstanding of quantum mechanics.
Interview with Andrea Stewart, author of The Bone Shard Daughter2020 Debut Author Challenge Cover Wars - September DebutsThe View From Monday... on Tuesday - September 8, 20202020 Debut Author Challenge - September Debuts

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